Guest post – Kale
Posted: December 14, 2015 Filed under: coming out, Testosterone | Tags: gender, gender identity, genderqueer, guest post, hormone replacement therapy, non-binary, queer, testosterone, trans, transgender
I’ve been emailing with a fellow genderqueer individual. Here’s their story!
Howdy. My name is Kale. I’m a 26 year old genderqueer, non-binary FT? person who generally lives in St. John’s, Newfoundland. Last Wednesday I got 100 mg of testosterone injected into my butt by a doctor who doesn’t know me or my journey at all. Last week I also found out a friend of a friend (who I had an unusual online relationship with) committed suicide and my 2 year old nephew has leukaemia. Needless to say I’ve got a lot going on right now mentally and emotionally but writing this blog post is something I deem really worthwhile, so here I am.
As much as I want to have all this stuff to say about my experience of being on testosterone, to be honest I’ve really noticed very little in that time. I know it’s super early but it feels like nothing happened at all. Well, I’m pretty positive my pubic hair feels more coarse now but I’m not even sure if that’s possible! So since I’m not experiencing any noticeable changes of any kind yet I thought I would write about my experiences leading up until this moment in time and choosing to take T.
This is Kale with their partner, and a pitcher plant. Kale is the one wearing the hat.
And I guess I should start by saying that though I’m not experiencing any noticeable changes specifically from T, I have definitely noticed changes in my overall well-being from the moment I decided that I was ready to start taking T. It was kinda like this relief that, well, things might start to make more sense soon. So, I’m genderqueer, I have started calling my gender “confusion”, the act of feeling comfortable when people do not see me as male or female but instead are confused by my gender presentations. In my dream world children always ask me if I’m a boy or a girl and adults give me weird looks and avoid using pronouns for me. For the past two years I’ve gone by Kale and have used they/them pronouns when I feel like I can express that desire to others (I have a really hard time with coming out as GQ). In those two years I have increasingly struggled with who I am.
Some of hardest struggles I’ve had to face are:
1. Being constantly she’d when, though I feel close to my identity as a female-born individual, do not feel like a woman.
2. Wanting to take testosterone but feeling like I don’t NEED it and because I don’t want to transition to male, is this possible? (I’ve since learned it is!)
3. Living in a binary world where I’ve felt like there is never going to be a place for me.
4. Feeling like what other people think shouldn’t bother me, but it did and it does. Being misgendered hurts and it’s pretty much always when you’re non-binary.
Though I’m still struggling with these things it’s starting to feel like there’s some answers forming, slowly, that indicate that maybe one day I will have a little more internal peace. I often think that meeting and talking to other like minded people is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a curse because they open my eyes to parts of my reality that I had been previously closed off to. Parts that are too scary and often really fuck me up for a while. But of course they are a blessing because they remind me I am not alone, I am not the only one, and there are infinite possibilities for being. And this always brings me back to a sane place once I’m done freaking out about how unprepared I am for my reality. This is the journey I am on, learning about myself, freaking out about myself and then coming to terms with myself and really loving me for being so strange and wonderful.
So I was seeing a sexologist (around May of this year) to talk about these scary thoughts and feelings (I suck at talking to friends and family about these things and it was so important to be able to talk about them) and I decided though I was very interested in taking T I wasn’t ready and really scared of it. It felt like I was so drawn to it but so not ready that I couldn’t even think about it. I decided that if I was to continue living the way I had been I had to refuse myself to think about T. Looking back on this I realize maybe that was unhealthy. Over the summer I had several bouts of intense dysphoria where I basically just didn’t want to exist. I was feeling very disassociated from my sexual self and realized that something had to change.
Despite still being scared I decided I would try to get a prescription for T. I was terrified and before I went to a doctor that I knew did informed consent, I did some hardcore research. This has literally changed my life. This is the blessing. It seems so strange to me now, the power of feeling a part of something. It’s truly incredible. I read Kameron’s and Micah’s (neutrois.me
) blogs for hours on end. And afterwards I felt liberated. I didn’t feel afraid anymore. I realized I could always stop if it didn’t feel right. I realized I could take as small a dose as I wanted. I realized I had the power to ask for what I wanted now that I knew just what I wanted. That what I want is attainable and real.
I’ve asked fellow GQ folks how they deal with some of the struggles that I’ve faced and continue to face and most of the answers I get revolve around making compromises and doing things, even small things, to make themselves feel like they are who they feel they are and they get read the way they want to, at least sometimes. This feels important to me. I don’t feel like testosterone is the end all be all for me, but it’s one thing I can do to make me feel more comfortable in this body and in this world. I don’t know where on the spectrum of feminine/masculine I want to be and I don’t think I will know until I get there. There’s no end goal. I look forward to being able to embrace the more feminine aspects of myself because I might be more obviously masculine. Being able to wear dresses with my patchy weird beard and confuse the hell out of people.
So why did I write this? Why did I want to share my experience? I believe the more voices out there, even if they’re saying the same things (and I’ve watched peoples videos and just nodded my head along to them sadly), makes it easier for those out there wondering and scared. It’s always gonna be terrifying and it’s never gonna be easy but if we support one another it feels a little less terrifying and a little bit easier.
I hope I can be another voice in the world for those lost and scared that need it. To meet that end, here’s my email: firstname.lastname@example.org
. I’d love to talk about anything.
If you are not sure you want to start a blog, but you want to tell your story, get in touch with me! Just click on “ask me something” in the upper right hand corner of my page…