A One TWU member shares his story:
“Transgender Remembrance Day is unsettling to me for various reasons. It’s a day I reflect on the lives of brave individuals who paved the way for me, it’s a day I’m thankful for being perceived as a heterosexual cis male, and it’s a day I realize more than ever that the fight for our rights is not over by any means.
With the way the world is, we need to move beyond tokenizing, stereotyping, and reducing “transgender awareness” to singular days or weeks.
The reality is that I come out on almost a daily basis. I come out to friends, colleagues, authority figures, doctors, sports therapists, professors, other queer people, teammates, and I do so in diverse ways for a range of reasons.
Coming out is repetitive, performative and sometimes an emotionally exhaustive process. I choose to come out in a variety of ways, depths, and truths depending on the situation. As a queer transmasculine person with a heavily male gender presentation who is married to a cis female, I have the immense privilege of being perceived as both cisgender and heterosexual.
But this is not my truth.
My journey of self-discovery began during my first attempt at TWU in the fall of 2009 which ended quite abruptly. I was a transphobic lesbian whose world was turned upside down when a fellow student was openly being transphobic. That was the catalyst to my self-acceptance.
It has taken me nearly 10 years to not only find, but also to appreciate and accept myself thus why I was able to return to TWU as proud, confident man.
There has been many high peaks and valleys in my journey: it’s difficult at the beginning to be a beacon for other trans people if you can’t love yourself. How are we supposed to spread love and acceptance when we lack it within ourselves? Be patient and kind. Not only with yourself but others as well. It’s through love that our message is best perceived.
So I will continue to be visible, and I will continue to come out on a daily basis. I encourage and support all of my friends to do the same until we no longer have to justify our way of being, feeling, thinking and loving.” 🖤