Another Out October Project story that highlights being true to yourself. This one comes to us from a transgender man who lived his life in the wrong body from day one. He lost all hope and then found someone who had been there before, someone who helped him see himself for who he was, and helped accept himself.
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I came out as transgender when I was fifteen. I dropped out of school and started living full-time as the person I knew I really was inside when I was sixteen. When people give me hell for dropping out, I take it lightly. Because I know that my reasons are valid, and it wasn’t just a matter of “I’m too cool for school, so I’m dropping out.” People at my school were cruel about my being pretty androgynous and “mistaken” for male half the time. So obviously it would have been suicide to transition there.
When I left school I started working at a fast food place, but didn’t come out to my boss until after I’d worked there for awhile, because I got to a point where I couldn’t handle living a lie. I had to present myself as male, or ultimately, I would have wanted to die. There was no more living if I had to hear “she” one more time, or my birth name. Either of those things sparked a rage deep inside of me that I couldn’t comprehend. Those were my choices. And at that point, I chose to live.
There would soon be plenty of other times that I would have to make the same choice. My boss didn’t support my decision and wouldn’t allow me to wear a name tag with my chosen name, so I wore it in secret when she wasn’t there, or I wore no name tag at all. The thought of the customers seeing the wrong name on my name tag and not percieving me as male gave me chills. I’d try my best to hide in the back doing dishes all night instead of facing the world with a lie pinned to my shirt. Eventually I quit and got another job where I was allowed to wear a name tag with my chosen name and only the managers were aware I was trans.
I don’t remember exactly when, but I knew from a very early age that I wasn’t what everyone seemed to think I was. I knew I was a boy. It was that simple. It was everyone else that was crazy. As I got older, that got harder and harder to get through people’s heads. Puberty and the departure of childhood were like a slap in the face. I had a rude awakening. I wasn’t what people said I was, I wasn’t exactly like the other boys….so I felt like nothing at all. I didn’t understand it, and didn’t hear of the term transgender until I was fifteen. So at that point I learned to mask the pain that I didn’t have words to define.
I started cutting when I was thirteen. For some, it’s because they go numb and long to feel. For me, every twinge of pain was comfort and I longed to go numb. I wanted to make my body unrecognizable…because in my opinion, it wasn’t really mine. It wasn’t male. I was male inside. And the incongruency was driving me insane. When I was sixteen I was admitted to the psych ward three times, all for cutting and suicidal ideation.
Only once did I really attempt to kill myself. I took my grandmother’s blood pressure meds, thinking that I’d just pass out and die. Luckily, I didn’t know pharmacology back then and the pills I chose were only diuretics and didn’t hurt me. I figured that was a sign I should live, so I just mutilated myself a little more to stay alive. The pain kept me going. The self punishment of the body I didn’t want kept me sane. To this day I have scars up and down both arms and legs from that period of my life. To an extent I regret it because they’ll never go away, but I don’t bother hiding them with sleeves anymore. I get alot of questions and sneers about my arms, get called emo, but I quit caring after awhile. I have no shame in surviving.
My grandma passed away when I was seventeen. She was the only blood relative who believed in me, said she’d still love me no matter what I was. She was more of a mother to me than my biological mom and losing her was hard. I did the only thing I knew how to do to survive — I masked the pain by hurting myself. Shortly afterwards, I was finally diagnosed as ADHD which I know I’ve had all my life, just never could get to see a doctor. Things looked up for awhile once I was on meds.
But I still felt completely empty and alone in spite of living my life full time as male. I didn’t think that it was possible to get on hormones or get surgery living in my area because it’s not a big city, so I had no hope of that. I thought I’d be stuck only half of the time passing, never being fully perceived as male to the rest of the world. And I couldn’t handle that. Not a day went by that I didn’t think at least once of running my car off the road and joining the only person who ever loved or believed in me.
The day I turned eighteen, I moved out. I had a full-time job, my license and still no GED but at least I had money coming in, and I didn’t care where I went, I was just getting away from my abusive mother come hell or high water. Luckily, some friends took me in and allowed me to live with them for several months. While staying with them, I met my ex-girlfriend. All my life I’d questioned my sexuality and I still wasn’t sure, but being a naive lust-struck young man, I went along with dating the first person who ever confessed to see me as a guy regardless of my body.
I later found out that she was gay, and “didn’t know what she was having sex with,” and needed me to stop transitioning, or break up with me. Being the person I was back then I couldn’t lose her no matter what so I stopped transitioning for a brief period of time. I still regret that, because that’s the only reason that some people I know now, know that I’m trans. We ended up breaking up for other reasons and after some drama, I became homeless.
Being homeless was basically the make-or-break period of my life. In the end it made me stronger because it taught me how to survive and be grateful for what I had. I got kicked out in early December and was homeless until late January. Being homeless teaches you how to survive, and survive for you, or you simply don’t make it. I never really wanted to stop living as male, I only did it for my ex. And now I had to live for me.
I bounced around shelters, took a bus to the nearest big city to try to start over, came back home, and finally gave up, stayed put, and slept on couches or outside in my car. The reason I didn’t go back to a shelter is because that was when I decided to live full-time as male again and obviously a shelter wouldn’t allow me to stay with the men. Being the stubborn person that I am I refused to have that happen. Life became slightly more livable once I was presenting as male, but there wasn’t a day where I wasn’t relentlessly reminded by my own brain that my body still was developing into something I wasn’t, and I couldn’t stop it. That thought alone still made me want to die. But I never could get the guts to do anything about it.
It was at this point that I met the two best friends I could ever ask to know. I hung out at the gay bar downtown a lot, and they were entertainers there. I asked to perform on a talent night which they hosted. One of them happened to be a transman…and the other his wife. I got to know them by emails first, then we talked a lot in person. He started T that March. In May, he was reading up on my blog posts of anger and self destruction and suicidal thoughts due to dysphoria. He suggested that his T doctor might do informed consent..meaning that I didn’t need a letter from a therapist approving me to start T…all I needed was a letter saying that I was seeing a therapist, period. He was right and I started T that month.
That was five months ago. Since then I’ve got my life together. I found a job, got a car, got into my own apartment, am getting my GED, legally changed my name and gender and on top of it all….I finally like the man I see in the mirror. No, it wasn’t easy. It took a lot of relentless time and effort, but it paid off. At five months on T I pass 100% of the time and I’m stealth at work. I don’t have to hide anymore, because to the world at large, I’m just the name and gender they see on my ID, which is finally correct.
Oh, and a side note. I finally came out as gay. Like I said, I’d questioned my sexuality all my life and once I started T I became comfortable enough with my own body to figure out that I never admitted being gay to myself because pre-T I felt like I had to compensate for the masculinity my body lacked…so there was no way I could admit to be gay….because if I said I was gay, people might mistake me for a lesbian instead of a gay man. Now that I haven’t heard she in months…I’m confident enough to present myself as who I really am. I’m very open about being gay, but don’t really tell people I’m trans unless they need to know.
One of these days, I’ll have the money to pay for my top surgery. Until then, I’m living one day at a time and reminding myself that all things worth having take time. I won’t lie, alot of days go by where I still feel alot of dysphoria related to my chest and genitals and having to wear a binder, and I toy with the idea of suicide. But now I have a support system. I have two amazing best friends. They’re the reason I’m still alive right now, because if I hadn’t met them I wouldn’t have started T when I did and I would have more than likely been another gay and transgender suicide. I still don’t realize how much I mean to them or them to me. When I feel like shit, I talk to them. He’s been there himself, and his wife is the most supportive loving person I’ve ever met, who sees no gender in people.
All I have to say is you gotta live for you. You will have friends and family who reject you, call you a pervert, a freak. Don’t listen to them. They’re not living your life. In the end you gotta live for you, or you’ll always feel empty. Some people say it’s a choice to be gay or trans, but it’s not. As my best friend said, ultimately the only choice we’ve made is the choice to stop living a lie. It gets better. But for it to get better…you have to choose to keep living. That is the ultimate form of revenge, of getting back at people, of proving to people that you’re not just some faggot, some queer, some tranny. You’re human. We all deserve to be loved, and live.
Remember, there are always options.
The Trevor Project: a 24-hour hotline for gay and questioning youth: 866-4-U-TREVOR (488-7386)
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-TALK (8255)
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GOP Congresswoman Saying She Would ‘Do Anything’ to Protect Her Grandchildren, Even ‘Shooting Them’ Sets Internet on Fire
U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Lesko (R-AZ) in a speech denouncing a House bill on gun safety, appears to inadvertently have declared that to protect her five grandchildren, she would “do anything,” even shoot them.
“I rise in opposition to H.R. 2377,” Congresswoman Lesko says in the video. “I have five grandchildren. I would do anything, anything to protect my five grandchildren, including as a last resort shooting them if I had to, to protect the lives of my grandchildren.”
NCRM has verified the video is accurate. Congresswoman Lesko made the remarks on June 9, according to C-SPAN, while she was opposing a red flag law.
The Congresswoman presumably meant she would as a last resort shoot someone threatening her grandchildren.
One Twitter user, Ryan Shead, posted the previously ignored video to Twitter, where it has gone viral and is trending.
Lesko, who some social media users note is running for re-election unopposed, went on to say: “Democrat bills that we have heard this week want to take away my right, my right to protect my grandchildren. they want to take away the rights of law-abiding citizens to protect their own children and grandchildren. and wives and brothers and sisters,” which is false.
“This bill takes away due process from law-abiding citizens. Can you imagine if you had a disgruntled ex or somebody who hates you because of your political views and they go to a judge and say, ‘oh, this person is dangerous,’ and that judge would take away your guns?”
Lesko’s hypothetical claims are false. Red flag laws are designed to protect both gun owners and those around them.
Allow me to introduce you to Congresswoman Debbie Lesko of Arizona, who is currently running for office unopposed in her district.
She would like America to know she loves her grandchildren so much she would shoot them if necessary. 😳
But liberals are the problem, right? 😏 pic.twitter.com/qk5BT9FDLw
— Ryan Shead (@RyanShead) July 5, 2022
Some social media users noted that Congresswoman Lesko reportedly “attended meetings about overturning the election,” while others are having fun with the Arizona Republican’s remarks:
Anybody check on Debbie Lesko’s grandkids?
— Sam Youngman (@samyoungman) July 6, 2022
Or maybe one of Debbie Lesko’s grandchildren gets rabies and she has to put it down before it attacks the other four! All sorts of things can happen.
— Ron Hogan (@RonHogan) July 6, 2022
The most probable interpretation is that @DebbieLesko meant she would shoot someone to PROTECT her grandchildren and garbled it. However, it’s the GOP, and it’s 2022. So . . . /1 https://t.co/KVWir9t8te
— CyborgSlavesOfPopehat (@Popehat) July 6, 2022
/3 Anyway, bottom line, good luck and best wishes to Debbie Lesko’s (for now) five grandchildren.
— CyborgSlavesOfPopehat (@Popehat) July 6, 2022
/4 But seriously it’s VERY unlikely that a GOP member of Congress was casually advocating shooting her grandchildren. I mean they’re white.
— CyborgSlavesOfPopehat (@Popehat) July 6, 2022
Since Debbie Lesko is trending for threatening to ::checks notes:: shoot her grandkids, now is the perfect time to revisit this recent thread/story on her very shady past. https://t.co/90xkhzrWny
— TrumpsTaxes (@TrumpsTaxes) July 6, 2022
Lauren Boebert is crazy and unqualified
Louie Gohmert is an idiot and unqualified
Marjorie Taylor Greene is dangerous and unqualified
Trump is mentally ill and unqualified
Debbie Lesko = hold my beer
— Jimmy (@JimmyStreich) July 6, 2022
This is the same Debbie Lesko who would shoot her grandchildren to own the libs. 😬
Arizona has better to offer. 💯 https://t.co/oXd9o3ucbo
— Ryan Shead (@RyanShead) July 6, 2022
I don’t think she meant the thing she said. I think she’s just dumb. She was trying to make some overblown dramatic point and she screwed up the script. https://t.co/aKzzocabim
— Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) July 7, 2022
Watch Congresswoman Lesko’s remarks above or at this link.
Separation of Church and State Is a ‘Fabrication’ Says Far Right Activist Charlie Kirk: They Should Be ‘Mixed Together’
Far-right religious activist, conspiracy theorist, and founder of the right-wing organization Turning Point USA Charlie Kirk has falsely declared that separation of church and state, a bedrock principle on which American society is based, is a “fabrication” not in the Constitution.
Kirk is a member of the secretive theocratic Council for National Policy., a close friend of Donald Trump, Jr., and spent years promoting President Trump – even interviewing him at one point. Turning Point USA has had repeated challenges. The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer in 2017 write a piece about TPUSA titled, “A Conservative Nonprofit That Seeks to Transform College Campuses Faces Allegations of Racial Bias and Illegal Campaign Activity.”
Former TPUSA communications director Candace Owens has praised Hitler, saying “the problem” with him was that he wanted to “globalize.”
On Wednesday Kirk declared, “There is no separation of church and state. It’s a fabrication. It’s a fiction. It’s not in the Constitution. It’s made up by secular humanists.”
The claim separation of church and state is not in the Constitution is a religious right belief that has been debunked by countless legal experts.
“Of course we should have church and state mixed together,” Kirk continued. “Our Founding Fathers believed in that. We can go through the detail of that. They established – literally – a church in Congress.”
That too is false.
“It’s a good thing Charlie Kirk doesn’t go to Wheaton because he would fail my Constitutional Law class,” writes Dr. Miranda Yaver, PhD, a Wheaton College professor.
As most public school students know, Kirk’s claims are belied by the First Amendment to the U.S., Constitution, which states:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
It’s the Establishment Clause, legal experts say, that debunks Kirk’s falsehood.
In reviewing the Supreme Court’s recent rulings, Reuters last month noted: “It was President Thomas Jefferson who famously said in an 1802 letter that the establishment clause should represent a ‘wall of separation’ between church and state. The provision prevents the government from establishing a state religion and prohibits it from favoring one faith over another.”
Jefferson is also considered the principal author of the Declaration of Independence.
Watch Charlie Kirk below or at this link.
Charlie Kirk: “There is no separation of church and state. It’s a fabrication. It’s a fiction. It’s not in the Constitution. It’s made up by secular humanists” pic.twitter.com/R4dkUSxGwI
— Jason Campbell (@JasonSCampbell) July 6, 2022
Pat Cipollone Is ‘A Greatest Hits Package of Crazy Statements’ by Donald Trump: Legal Expert
Former White House Counsel Pat Cipollone has agreed to speak to the House Select Committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on Congress on Friday.
Former Assistant Deputy Attorney General Harry Litman told CNN that Cipollone has carefully negotiated the testimony and he will likely “steer around down the middle” of the attorney/client privilege. However, former President Donald Trump is not the client of a White House counsel, the White House is. President Joe Biden has waived executive privilege for anything involving Jan. 6 or the 2020 election.
“He is a greatest hits package of crazy statements by Donald Trump,” Litman said of Cipollone. “He is the one who says to Mark Meadows, ‘You know, if you do this, you’ll have blood on your effing hands.’ He’s the one who says to Mark Meadows about [Mike] Pence, ‘You’ve got to stop it’ and Meadows says, ‘You’ve heard him. He thinks the rioters are right.’ He’s the one who has to go to Cassidy Hutchinson, a 25-year-old, and plead with her because Meadows won’t speak to him. ‘Please try to keep him from going to the Capitol.’ He’s the one who says, ‘if I go to the Capitol, it will be every effing crime imaginable.'”
“Now, they’ve negotiated it up, and probably what he wants is to say he’s not piercing attorney/client privilege. But all these statements I’ve said to you, Trump’s nowhere around. So, attorney/client has to be with the client for the purpose of getting legal advice, so he’s got tons to say without that.”
As Litman explained, Cipollone is in “everything.”
See the discussion below.
Image: Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks via Flickr:
President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump talk with Supreme Court Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett, her husband Jesse Barrett, Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, his wife Virginia Thomas, White House Counsel Pat Cipollone, and Deputy White House Counsel Kate Comerford Todd in the Blue Room of the White House Monday, Oct. 26, 2020, after attending Barrett’s swearing-in ceremony as Supreme Court Associate Justice.
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