In this episode we’ll be having a look at the many different ways that it’s possible to feel within our gender identities.
It’s so common when TGD folks begin to understand that their gender identity is not necessarily aligned with the one they were assigned at birth, to look at making physical changes pretty quickly.
There is nothing wrong with this, but it can sometimes come before we necessarily take the time to embrace what we may be feeling.
This is totally ok. Finally finding language to verbalise our experiences is exciting and making changes can feel really good too. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this.
But, it is really important that we allow ourselves time to have the feelings that we are having.
If you don’t feel you can manage this on your own you may be able to reach out to a trusted friend. Or find one of the many peer support groups online.
Two transmasculine people sitting together and having a serious conversation
(If you find yourself in crisis, please reach out to a crisis helpline. For Aussies’s try Switchboard and Qlife. If you’re not in Australia here is a global list of emergency hotlines.)
The thing is, how we feel about our identities can be complicated. It takes time to understand ourselves and where we are at.
You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your gender identity.
It’s 100% ok to change within our identities. They don’t have to be a permanent choice.
And I know this from personal experience.
Because the way I feel about myself and my identity now, has changed over time.
But, depending on where we’re at in our self exploration, it may be hard to feel confident with how we’re expressing ourselves.
I see so many folks, particularly non binary, gender fluid and gender queer folks who are AMAB and AFAB that worry that their expression of themselves is not ok.
As a result, the label they have chosen or are trying out, may appear to not allow them to express their authentic selves.
Friends this is just not true.
The most beautiful and amazing thing about being non binary, gender fluid, genderqueer or gender diverse in general is that you are free to make that mean whatever you want it to.
There are no stereotypes that you need to fulfil. This is a trap. It comes from being raised in a binary society that pushes gendered stereotypes.
You can be an AFAB femme presenting person and still be non binary. Or you can be an AMAB masc person and still be non binary
You can be AFAB and butch and be non binary. Or AMAB and femme and be non binary.
The most important thing is that you do what helps you feel good because you want to.
And make your choices in your own time. So that you have time to think about a change you may want to make or try.
In addition to being clear on your choice, this also gives you enough time to understand whether or not it feels right for you.
So you could always start by writing a list. Put down anything that you think may help you feel more affirmed and then try them out.
But regardless of where you are at or how you are expressing yourself, there is one thing to remember.
There are always going to be people out there that will try to force their opinions onto you. The best thing to do is to not listen to them.
I’m sure they have their reasons for their views.
But their reasons can’t change who you are. And your choices don’t have to be made based off the way they see the world.
Just keep being you regardless. Because some people just aren’t worth your time or energy.
You know who you are and nothing anyone says can change that for you.
And this goes for family as well. Sometimes they are the biggest causes of harm in our lives if we let them be.
Because let’s be honest. It’s just not possible for someone who is cis, to understand what it’s like living outside the binary. And that’s ok.
So do your best to find folks sharing a similar experience to you for support. They are the people who will understand.
Find TGD peer support groups near you
If you live in a larger metro area, you may be lucky enough to have some local peer support groups that you can engage with. This could be a great place to start.
So check out socials like facebook and meet-up to see if there’s something close to you.
And even if you can’t do in person stuff right now, it can be good to know there are people close by.
You could also go to places like reddit to find peer support groups. If you go in and search non binary, genderfluid, gender queer or which identity/identities you use, you’ll find a heap of people that you can connect with for support.
What did you think of this podcast episode?