What Gender Dysphoria Taught Me About Looking Past Appearance
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You’re trapped inside a body that isn’t yours. Now, ever since you were little, you knew something wasn’t right; it has always felt like something was off, like you were different from the other kids your age. And they always made fun of you for it. It isn’t until one day you ask yourself, Why am I like this? You look down at your body, wondering what connection you must be missing with it, like everyone else feels at home in their body except you. Then there comes the disconnect from looking in the mirror at your body, like the body you’re seeing reflected back to you isn’t yours, like you’re looking at someone else’s. This doesn’t feel right to you so you start avoiding mirrors. Start avoiding places where you can see your reflection. Start avoiding bathrooms. Start avoiding places where the two genders are separate.
This is what Gender Dysphoria feels like. And this is my life on a daily basis. However, certain people in my life just don’t seem to understand.
“You’ll never be a real man” he says to me
His words stab me In the chest
But he doesn’t even notice me
“You’ll never be a real man”
The words pour out of his
Making their way through the
Thin dry air And into my ears
“You’ll never be a real man”
Waterfalls start to form at my eyes
Giving them a glassy look
And through all this,
He doesn’t notice.
But I do not cry
Because I love him.
I do not cry
Because I know that he loves me
Even when he has no filter
I know that he loves me
Even when he doesn’t support me
As a man But regardless I stand
With my head held high
Arms reaching towards the sky
A glint of happiness in my eyes
And he may try to hurt me With his
But he never even stopped to ask
Never even heard
That I am proud to be me.
Don’t you see?
But I am so much more than just a transgender male. However, some people refuse to see past this. To see past the high voice, feminine features, and short stature. They let it obscure their vision, so much so that that’s the only thing that they see about me; that I’m different from the average person. But even through all of this,
I rise. I rise for the
Because I have been there.
But here I stand today
With solid ground beneath my feet
And I will rise.
Imagine a world where everyone is accepting of each other. Where we look past someone’s identity, and see into the person, so we not only see the heart, but also the soul. So I challenge you to look past appearance. I challenge you to look past gender, sexuality, race, or anything else that might separate someone from the “norm”.
And when we one day can see past our differences, we will be free. Free of the harsh words that people have said to us, for they will mean nothing. Free of the prejudicial, artificial concept of who we think a person is, just judging by the outside. And as Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Free at last, free at last, thank God almighty we are free at last.”
Photo by kylewilliamurban on Unsplash