for Transsexuals, Transgendered and Crossdressers
by Laura Amato
In honor of coming out week I decided to write about a highly charged Transgendered topic, Coming Out.
Just speaking the title makes most of cringe with fear. We live in a Homophobic society and reality justifies our fear. What do we fear? We're afraid of being shunned, ridiculed and the possibility of violence against us as well as loosing those close to us. Since we are more emotional then the average bear this makes us particularly sensitive to rejection. In many cases this can lead to suicide.
It should be simple. The cure to our ills is being ourselves and all that that entails. Yet being ourselves is not something that society as a whole accepts. A recent study suggests that homophobia is inborn and the norm. Normal society rejects us. Even Senator Edward Kennedy, a liberal and advocate of gay rights is against us being ourselves and granted protection even though our list of dead is lengthy. He's more afraid of what bathroom we'll use. Lets face it if someone that liberal is against us what chance do we have to be accepted?
Even as a minority we have a right to our lives as ourselves instead of hiding in the closet. Even the American Constitution says that we have a right to the Pursuit of Happiness. There's no clause that says "Except the Transgendered". So you have a right to be you.
Just as Homophobia is inborn so too is being Transgendered, Indeed Transsexuals have been shown to have a smaller hypothalamus in the brain. It is a medically accepted condition that many consider to be a birth defect. Who can blame US for that? Its not a lifestyle choice. There are treatments, For some its a simple matter of being yourself, for others it includes surgery to make the mind and body one.
Assume at the start that everyone will reject you. Of course its unlikely that everyone will. In my case Coming out was mostly positive. I lost my two closest friends but kept everyone else. My family mumbled about it but accepted me. Strangely the ones I thought would accept it didn't and the ones I thought wouldn't, did.
Tell everyone that your condition is a medical one. You didn't choose to be this way. Who wpuld choose this? It is not a religious or moral issue but a medical one. Yet the suicide rate for pre-ops is estimated as high as 50%. Tell them you have a right to be happy and will do so but you'd still love their support. Some family members will try to bribe you with love. "If you love me you won't do this". Don't fall victim to this. State that your life hangs in the balance. It probably does.
Think about what could happen if you don't come out. At worst you could become a victim of suicide. If not you may live an unfulfilled life. No one in this world has a right to sentence you to this. Tell them that too. If you are rejected it is they that are being selfish, not you. After all you are only trying to be yourself. Who would deny you that? If they do they are not on your side.