On the Transgender Community

Letters from a Lesbian/Cartas  de una Lesbiana

Dear World,

Marriage equality has been in the forefront of everyone’s minds lately. Now that we have won that battle, it is time to turn our attention to the most underrepresented and misunderstood people in our community: transgenders.

My ex-fiancée is transgender. When we met, she was just coming out as a lesbian. Now, he is a transgender man living his life the way he wants to. We’re still in touch, and I have learned a lot from him and our relationship.

Many of us, myself included, have struggled with some degree of gender dysphoria. I don’t mean that in a way to belittle the transgender community, but rather as a bridge – a way for us all to connect. So, they are not alone in their experiences, nor should they be.

Watching my ex evolve and transform has been an amazing experience. From shock – and even some judgment – to understanding and support, I’ve run the gamut of emotions.

At first, I dismissed it. I thought it was ridiculous. I questioned the authenticity and sincerity of it. He came from a familial situation that greatly disproved of being gay, let alone being trans. I thought it might have been an act of rebellion. Time went on, though, and I watched him grow as a man and as a human being.

Watching his experience, asking him questions, and building up a friendship based on respect taught me so much. I was given the opportunity to fully see and understand what real gender dysphoria is. I was able to gain insight into the humanity of being transgender, as well as the process. I was able to learn that transitioning is freeing. I was reminded that our humanity is far greater than our gender.

Now as a friend, I am able to support him and the trans community in ways I never imagined before. I see the discrimination and hatred he and other transgender people experience, and I want to reach out. I want to push for full equality for every member of the LGBT community. I feel blessed to have the rights and the life that I do, and I want to be able to bestow that to all people. I am using my voice and my writing to help him, and the transgender community, as a way to pay him back for the ignorance I had first expressed when he initially came out to me. Now, I support GENDA, and will do whatever I can politically (and otherwise) in order to help the transgender community.

The transgender community currently suffers the greatest inequality and bigotry of our generation. It is time that I – we, all of us bring equality to every member of the LGBT community. As a united front, we can give every member of the LGBT community – every single citizen true freedom and equality.

Live life in your own special way,

Lauren

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