My Rage

Recently I’ve felt rage inside of me and I mostly attribute it to the upcoming election and politics being in the forefront of everybody’s mind. In a training I recently attended, queer suicide rates were discussed and one of the tipping points for a lot of folks is election time. All of the issues the queer community faces are discussed, lots of opinions (hurtful and uninformed) are pushed onto everybody, and in general, marginalized groups are in the spotlight. When this happens, a lot of ugliness comes to the surface. As of late, I have found myself avoiding comment sections and news in general. I have strayed further and further away from the presidential election due to fear. Fear for me, fear for you, fear for the United States, our priorities, our morality, our livelihood. I’ve asked many people this question throughout the last few months: Does growing up mean finally being aware of just how terrible our society is, or is our society just extremely messed up at this specific time? Or am I only choosing to see the bad in everything? Do I view the world through shit colored glasses? I don’t know and I’ve been attempting to change my view but with each passing day, I am only disheartened more by things I hear and things I see. I would describe myself as a very positive person, but that positivity is rapidly turning into negativity.

Something that has especially been bringing me a lot of stress and displeasure is the privilege and entitlement of (straight) cis men. Am I projecting my own insecurities onto a large group of people? Probably. Am I wrong to do that? Possibly. Do I have sources and life experiences to back up every single thing that irritates me about this huge group of people? Yup. Please hear me when I say that I do have plenty of cis men in my life who I respect, who inspire me, who I find great value in and feel have influenced many parts of me. I have deep love and admiration for these individuals, and part of my adoration for them is the fact that they were able to break through my shield of judgement and my bad attitude. I’ll be the first to admit that this is one of my biggest flaws, and I’m looking for ways to change a lot of my views of cis men.

I reflect back on my life and feel it’s quite possible that I’ve always been triggered by cis men and the “societal norms” of masculinity. This has been something that I have been coming to terms with and I’ve been delving deep in regards to how it makes me feel about my own transition and life in general. In a patriarchal and misogynistic society, these feelings do not make life any easier. This contention has become exponentially more prominent in my life once I transitioned and especially once my last relationship ended a year and a half ago for reasons that I won’t discuss in this segment. Although these feelings have reared their ugly head in recent years, I’ve always felt uncomfortable around straight cis men. Even growing up, I had a lot of irrational fear, stress, and anxiety revolving around my relationship with my own father and more importantly his role (in my eyes) as head of the household. If any of you know my father or have read a single Facebook post I have made about him, you know that he is kind, he is accepting, he is diplomatic all of the time, he is thoughtful he is respectful, and in no way feels it important to assert dominance over anybody. So why, even as a young child was I so nervous? I’ll chalk it up to some type of trauma that I experienced long before being in his care. I couldn’t tell you what that trauma would be, as I literally have no idea, but I bring it up because it’s the only thing in my mind that makes sense for this trigger to be so real even in my preadolescent years.

Fast forwarding a bit, I feel like my wariness around cis men was also heightened by jealousy. They had what I wanted, but (at the time) I could never have it, so resentment grew for what I’m guessing is decades. For a long time I felt like all I knew was jealousy. I was jealous of people’s authenticity, people’s joy, people’s lives. Luckily, the feeling of jealousy has subsided but unluckily it has been filled with more or less the feeling of disdain. Looking back, I have always had privilege and a lot of it. I may have never known or understood what that meant because of the affluent neighborhood in which I was raised and never having to see or understand what it truly meant to be underprivileged, but my eyes have been opened and I can see clearly now.

Even as a post transition AFAB person, I have a lot of privilege. I’m white. I have passing privilege. And now, I’m seen as male. I can’t remember if I’ve discussed all of my privilege epiphanies in this blog, and I definitely do not have the time, space, or energy to get into that now, but really seeing and living the differences in privilege has changed me the absolute most during my transition. Bringing this all back to the point, I feel disdain because I feel like I see the privilege that these cis men have and that they can’t quite grasp. Honestly, I shouldn’t be so upset by the fact that they don’t understand it as genuinely as me because it’s so engrained in society. A lot of cis men in my age range have started to discuss this, acknowledge this, and try to change this. For that I am forever happy and thankful. Still, this disdain is ever present.

Hyper masculinity scares me. Rape culture scares me. Aggression scares me. Apathy scares me. Sexism SCARES me. The fact that marginalized groups are begging white cis men in power to make the right choice in decisions regarding morality, and that our cries for justice are met with more aggression, more defensiveness, more skewed perception of reality is pitiful to me. I am absolutely disgusted by the entitlement and the ignorance.

To reel it in, I am unhappy with the way our society was created to put and keep straight cis men in power positions. I’m unhappy with our societies underlying xenophobia. Again, I understand that I’m generalizing a hell of a lot and maybe most of this is some deep rooted personal issues that desperately need to be sorted out, but with everything going on right now from the North Dakota Oil Pipeline battle, The Stanford Rapist and his ridiculous slap on the wrist, POC and especially trans women of color STILL being murdered regularly, trans people still not having adequate representation, blatant racism at every turn, white cis men actually believing that women are treated equally, and basically everything Trump, it’s so fucking hard.


A few months ago something happened to me that I haven’t talked much about. To make a long and drawn out story short, I found my birth mother. Throughout my entire life, I have always had this curiosity to know about her, which is probably normal for all children who were adopted. I started looking from time to time on social media for names that sounded familiar from my adoption file, and finally I found a match that just so happened to be my older half brother. I added him on Facebook but never made an outreach because I wasn’t positive we were related.

I wanted to know more about my history before the adoption, but once I started transitioning I considered this something that could never happen. For one, I felt like nobody would believe me, and secondly, if she did believe me, how would she respond? Would I even want to know? I knew I wasn’t placed for adoption out of love, it was a rocky start and I was already informed that I was removed by the state. With that information in hand, I wasn’t sure if she could be accepting of who I am. Up until this point I have been accepted by most people in my life and have had positive experiences with people in my family. My adoptive family have been so supportive, I had a fear that if I were to ever find my birth mother, she would pass judgement and possible hatred onto me, and although I have so many positive supports, this type of pain would cut me deep.

They day I found her was actually the day she passed away. My half brother, who I had no clue was actually related to me at the time, posted something about his mother passing away and when he used her name everything clicked for me. I had found him a year prior to this status, and little did I know I had a direct connection to my birth mother that entire time. When I finally realized this, I was upset because I felt I had missed an opportunity. Unfortunately she passed away and there was no funeral.

Through all of his though, I have gained biological family. I have a cousin and a half brother who keep in touch with me now. I was worried they wouldn’t believe my story as well or what they would be put off by who I am, but to my surprise they were not. They accepted me immediately and were very open about answering all of my questions. They have asked to meet, and I don’t think I am ready yet, but this may change soon.

I can’t believe the irony of finding my birth mother on her death day, but I view it as a sign that it was never meant to be. I sleep well knowing that I have contact with my biological family now, and that they want what’s best for me, as they always have. I was even able to see a picture of my birth mother and me as a baby. The whole experience was very moving, scary, and brought me a sense of closure. I realized I need to stop assuming people will react negatively to me and take chances, or else I might miss opportunities of a lifetime, such as this one. Rest in Peace Neva, you brought me life, and this life is one for the books!

Fear of Failure

I have come to a realization over the past few weeks that has really upset me but also motivated me. I’ve realized that I have very little confidence in myself. In the past I was a pretty good athlete without working too incredibly hard and that brought me confidence. Once I stopped playing sports, I stopped taking care of myself but I had other things preoccupying my time. I was in college and spending time with my friends and wasn’t very focused on myself. Once I came out, my attention was aimed towards my changes and all of the learning and growing that comes from that time in a trans man’s life. Now that I’m basically post transition, I have circled back around and started focusing on myself and my body again.

Without sports, I feel like I’m missing something, and I’ve been depressed for a while about my current state of physical being. In January I started running and working out at the gym, and I started feeling great. I completed 2 of the 3 races that I set a goal to complete, I lost weight, and I started feeling confidence but it soon faded. I still feel like I’m missing something. Because I want to find that missing link, I decided to sign up for an on-ramp session at a crossfit gym near my house scheduled for tomorrow.

I spent all weekend thinking about it. At first I was excited because it’s something that will push me harder than I have ever been pushed, but as time went on a sense of dread and anxiety fell over me. I wasn’t excited anymore, instead I started thinking of reasons why I should quit before I even started. This morning I woke up bummed out. I came to terms with the fact that I’m a quitter. I was never a quitter before, so why is this happening now? It all boils down to my confidence. Why am I so scared? Clearly it’s a fear of failure. My logic was, “why start things when I could fail, I’m chill just the way I am.” Well this is stupid, and I’m honestly embarrassed that I even think this way. The way I see myself has changed and I’m unhappy with it.

I spent this entire day trying to process this loser attitude. It took literally saying the words out loud, ” I don’t think I’ll be good enough compared to the other men there.” I’ve already started comparing myself to others, something that I have tried to stop doing. I feel like I’m not fit enough, not big enough, not strong enough, not motivated enough, and not good enough to compare to these men. How pitiful. I’m scared to start something new and be the worst at it, and I’m scared that I will never match up to other people there. This attitude has absolutely spread to other aspects of my life. This thought process has ruined many chances to explore relationships (friendly and romantic) with others. I don’t feel smart enough or good enough to do well in grad school. I don’t advocate for myself in any way, outside of transition related matters.

It’s a hard pill to swallow and I feel weaker mentally than I ever have. I’m so cripplingly anxious about working on myself and working on my discipline that I feel miserable. This only means one thing to me: I need to get the hell over myself. I need to push myself and not give a shit about what happens. I need to stop comparing myself to others. I need to stop thinking that I am less-than. So tomorrow at 7pm, I am going to go to the gym and make a fool of myself, but I’m going to start learning how to push myself and to accept failure. And most importantly, I’m going to learn self confidence. I’m really scared that I will give up, but I can’t keep doing that. I won’t.

Identity and attempting to find one?

The past few months I’ve started really delving deep and analyzing my behavior, my mannerism, things that I find normal and how they effect others, and general differences in the way I interact with others versus cisgender males. I’ve started to feel anxiety about this crazy notion that I can’t make a connection with others because I feel disconnected. I’ve spent so many years in my own head and I’m slowly learning that breaking that habit is much harder than anticipated. Before I started medically transitioning I assumed that once I was post transition (for the most part) I would be able to socialize, communicate, and just BE me. The only issue with that now is, I don’t necessarily know who I am. My entire identity revolved around feeling like I couldn’t express one and I think that I might have forgotten to create one for myself. My whole life I spent much of my time just watching others, attempting to read them and listen to theirs stories and so now that it’s time for me to branch out and start to look outside of others and into myself.

At the end of April I started working a second job at a boy’s group home. I work in the agencies two locations, and both houses are very different. It has been the first time in my life that I’m completely surrounded by cisgender males. It’s already been such a learning experience. Growing up I surrounded myself with women. I played zero coed sports, had very few male friends, and the only real strong male role model in my life was my dad (thank GOD). Sidebar: My dad’s guidance by modeling has really helped shape how I view masculinity and how I present my masculinity. I find his presence demands respect and because of this he doesn’t feel the need to constantly seek validation from others.

Unlike my dad, the boys at the group homes act the opposite of that. Young men (especially these young men who have been a product of the system and who have experience unfortunate traumas throughout their lives) are hyper sensitive about their masculine identity and feel the need to assert dominance in most situations. I’ve already seen so many verbal altercations, physical acts of aggression, and downright disrespectful behavior towards staff as well as each other. This is what I anticipated. I have also seen thoughtfulness, young men just trying to make the best of their situations, and lots of drive. Whenever I see their tempers flare and their interactions with one another, I am reminded about how differently I was raised and socialized.

I’ve also noticed that when immediately in testosterone only setting, I fall directly into a maternal role and react to situation in a more nurturing way. This might have to do with growing up in a very nurturing home, being socialized as female, or just personality. I can’t be sure but there is a huge difference in how I react, how I handle, and how I conclude any type of situation with the boys versus other male staff in the homes. I could probably go on and on about all of the differences I notice, (polite laughter, empathetic looks, etc.) that I can contribute to being socialized as female versus being socialized as a cisgender male, but I think the key is to stop analyzing and picking apart every little thing and just being present.

The road to my hysterectomy 

Today I saw my nurse practitioner at the trans clinic for the last time. Fortunately, I can still go to the clinic I just have to see an MD due to insurance. We ran some blood tests and I go back in next month to go over my levels. My hidden agenda for the appointment was to begin discussing the road to my hysto.

For the past year or so, every few months I’ve suffered from cataclysmic cramping. Fortunately it’s been about 6 months I haven’t had a severe bout, but I have been cramping regularly but the pain isn’t as severe. I’ve also been bleeding on and off for the past two months. I think it’s time for my last surgery.
She referred me to a trans friendly OBGYN. My NP is retiring in a few months and so she wants me to get a move on so that she can oversee this while she is still running the clinic. I’m nervous to have another surgery but knowing this is my last and most routine surgery gives me hope.
The idea that I will be post transition (minus administering hormones FOREVER) brings me a sense of relief. No more ‘to do’ lists, and no more (hopefully) large medical bills related to this transition.
I’m planning to document the process so other trans men in my area can have some sort of clue what will be coming their way in their form of appointment, paperwork, insurance, surgeons, and of course recovery.

Back at it again with the overthinking.

I haven’t written a post for this blog in a very long time. I deleted it temporarily because I started working with kids who understand how to use google and knew my name. I didn’t want to be outed in a way that would make my job terrible, but now I realize that I need to keep writing and sharing because even after years of my transition, I look to other brothers for advice and thoughts. I’m apologizing to myself for being scared.

My thoughts today revolve around the idea of being stealth, where I fit in, and what I miss most about being pre-T.

Honestly, I don’t know how I’m seen by people. I don’t know if they see beaming masculinity, insecurities, confusion, or just me. I guess I don’t even know how I feel about myself, so this might be the reason why I’m so lost.

I work in an agency with a majority of cis gender straight women. I love working with women, being surrounded by women, and everything that has to do with women and femininity, and for a while I was stealth. Actually, I’m still living stealth with a few of my colleagues who I don’t know well or who I don’t think would be “cool” about it. Anyway, I’m 50% stealth, and I’m trying to figure out what that means to me.

I go back and forth about whether or not it’s important to tell somebody about my journey. I don’t want to over share, but as time goes on, I would like people to understand me. At work, I’m seen mostly as a cis gender straight male and I just can’t get on board with that. I take pride in my queerness, and I feel like it has shaped me. Sometimes I want it to be acknowledged and sometimes I want it to remain a secret. The problem with coming out is that you can not undo it. Much like the written word, it’s concrete and it stays. The fact that my mind changes daily about how I want to present myself is absolutely the reason why I feel so wishy washy about living stealth or living out.

The truth is, I’m jealous of people who appear queer at first glance. I feel like when I was younger I came off that way. I didn’t fit any mold, didn’t fit in any box, and even though I felt dreadfully unhappy, I see now that I was able to find peace in others like me without even having to say a word. When you see another queer person you’re able to connect with them on spot in a unique way. You are able to appreciate their story without even opening the book.

Now, as a post transition bear, I don’t feel like I have the luxury of people being able to read me and feeling that they can connect with me on a queer level. I could easily live a 100% stealth lifestyle, and for most that’s “goals” and for me it was too, but now that I’m living my dream, I feel beige. I feel like I’ve almost lost part of my identity. I never identified as female, but I never identified as 100% male either, and through the years of being perceived as one, I am able to see that I fall somewhere in between. I know a lot of people also live like this. Maybe this is just the cross that trans people have to bear. Being queer, I went from female to male, one end of the spectrum to the other, but my heart is somewhere in the middle. Now of course I’m not saying that I’m not much happier, healthier, whole, and free, because I am. This transition saved me in many ways.

I’m grateful, grateful, grateful for where I am, and this entire journey. I’m just attempting to understand who I am. I’m sure this is a life long battle. Stealth or not stealth, I’m happy where I am and the idea that I have so many more chapters and transitions and surprises and existential bullshit in my life is exciting and refreshing. My entire adult life I’ve been working so hard to change, counting down the days until this happens and that happens, maybe the fact that I’ve stopped changing scares me because the idea of slowing down and being done sounds so stagnant. It’s apparent to me now that I haven’t written in a while because my thought process is scattered and I’m probably more confused post entry than pre, but I’ll get the hang of it again soon. I have a lot to say.