A friend of mine shared this heartbreakingly beautiful testimony of his life that resonated with me in that our parents tried to repress the parts of us they didn’t want, his was the boy or manly aspects whereas mine was the girl or feminine aspects. He has given me permission to share his story. Does any of it resonate with you? If you’re willing to talk about it please do because I believe it could be helpful to someone else to hear that they are not alone.
“Growing up in our house we followed the Lord’s Words as interpreted by my mom primarily.
She disliked traditional masculinity before “toxic masculinity” was even invented.
When I was a little kid I was fascinated by the drums, 80s hair band rock music, and motorcycles. I liked the ninja turtles and GI Joe and toy guns and war games and fast noisy cars. I wanted to hunt and fish and box.
But I wasn’t allowed a drum set and rock music was frowned on in our religious household because they weren’t praising Jesus all the time and the rocker lifestyle was too wild.
Motorcycles were too dumb and dangerous- “no one should have them!”
Ninja Turtles didn’t respect authority and GI Joes were violent.
Standing up to pee made a mess.
Why couldn’t I be more like my sisters, mom would gripe.
If there was a way to riff on this theme and squash boyish interests and behaviors, mom found a way to do it.
But drums weren’t just awesome- I knew deep down that given the chance to play them I could really do it and do it well.
One day I got a chance and played a full drum kit- naturally and competently enough to jam with friends the first time I sat behind them.
I snuck over to a friend’s house and learned to ride his big brother’s GSX-R 750 motorcycle in his front yard. Way too much bike for 14 year olds the first time out but we survived.
My interest in the military became an obsession with history. I signed up for the Marines my senior year and joined the military the next fall. There was a war on so I got my chance to play the big boy war games and finally bought my own motorcycles and pissed standing up.
I found happiness in my element with my male friends with whom I had lots in common except sports fanaticism which I never really understood.
All this to say that it seems to me I was born with certain natural inclinations to an ideal self-image that persisted despite my parents’ best efforts to raise a neutered Christian man.
Number one that’s not the point of religion.
Number two we all have themes that are intrinsic to our self expression.
I didn’t set out to become the man I became and I don’t spend time trying to prove myself to others. I just AM WHO I AM and I’m still plenty in touch with my feminine side thanks to mom.
So why doubt a trans person’s intuitions?
And why try to raise a child in your own image especially if you secretly hate yourself or your own dad or whatever.
Take a look at a few of the things you identify with and ask yourself how you’d feel if those qualities were derided, disparaged, or discouraged. Or outright forbidden.
What if you’re a musician who was never allowed to play music?
An athlete who wasn’t allowed to play any sports?
A student who wasn’t taught to read?
Imagine being trans and then maybe stop trying to make “being trans” fit your concept of reality for a little bit.
“But sexuality and gender aren’t hobbies!”
Really? I think hobbies are just as important as gender- how about that?
Being yourself is a perfectly fine hobby.
Just be courteous about how late you stay up banging the drum set.
Just be kind.”