I Am Pleased To Announce That You Are Now Transgender
Hi there! Welcome to Pride 2022. I’m your assigned representative, here to deliver the good news: You’re transgender.
Let me guess: You got here by Googling “am I transgender.” Or “signs you might be transgender.” Or “illness make people believe they are transgender.” Or “hormonal disorder testosterone make woman believe man,” a Google search near and dear to my college self. I really did have a testosterone disorder, namely the fact that I needed to get a syringe of testosterone and inject it into my body, because I am transgender. And — if you Googled any of that and decided to read this blog post about it — so are you.
Look: It’s really scary to think you might be transgender. People are unmitigated shits to us on a daily basis. You can probably think of all sorts of reasons why being transgender would be hard: Maybe you’re afraid that you’ll lose friends or family, or that you won’t be hot, or that you’ll get fired, or that you’re too old, or that you can Do More Good As An Ally. (You’re just a really, really good ally.) You have a whole lot of reasons why transition might not work out.
Here’s the problem: The people who come up with complicated rationales for why they should not transition are transgender people. Cisgender people aren’t afraid of that stuff, because they don’t want to transition, because they’re cis. So, given that you already are transgender, and will be whether or not you ever transition, the question is not whether you want to be trans. It’s how to be trans in a way that minimizes suffering, and the closet is a very painful place.
Same thing applies if you’re cisgender, by the way. Nothing I can say or do will make you trans if you’re not. I could crouch outside your window whispering “JOIN USSSSSS” all night long, and all it would get me is a restraining order, because I cannot transmit queerness via rhetoric or argument. I cannot reason you into being anyone other than who you are.
Still: I remember what I wanted, when I was thinking about coming out. I followed every possible trans guy on Twitter. I hung around transmasculine colleagues, making nice. I wanted to be nice, but what I also wanted — fantasized…