Shared Stories

This is a page where we will post stories from other people that are submitted to us. Feel free to submit a story on our contact page or you can send them via email.

Lindsay, Texas, 21

I have a complicated story that in all reality still is simple. I was born in Florida and was about seven or eight when my parents got divorced. I never understood why my mom and dad no longer wanted to be together until later in life. That is when my mom finally came out to the world and I knew my mom was a lesbian. I was raised by her and my step mother karen in my later years. I ended up moving to Maine when I was twelve and I never hid who my mom was from anyone which led to a lot of bullying and teasing from the other kids. Which sadly sometimes still continues to this day. I always felt like I had to warn people before they came over because the times I didn’t my family would get horrible reactions. No one was allowed over except for one friend.

My personal story with sexuality is fairly simple I always considered myself straight, then confused then straight. The only time I ever felt confused is when I fell in love with a trans man. That love taught me that sexuality is a lot more complicated and fluid and open then what I had thought as a kid. People knew and some people where very hateful towards me and others questioned my sexuality. I know I did too because of the pressure to know but the lesson I learned is that love has no boundaries and gender has no limits. I still love this person and know that they will have forever had an impact on how I look at others and my relationships. I learned a lot and now try to participate as an active advocate for those around me no matter who they are, who they love, or how they see the world. I have done a lot of standing up for others along with myself. That is really my story and I just encourage everyone to be who they are and let your heart take you where you dream of going and brush off the hateful confusing ideas people try to spread in your mind.
These lessons are what led me to Psychology and I have a huge desire in helping people through what life has thrown at them. If anything I want to help people realize that is is okay to be who you are and sometimes there doesn’t need to be a label for something. Things are things people are people and we are all beautiful. I hope some day I can make an impact in saving people from the pain of the world and over coming the bullies. I also just want to add positivity to every life I touch because I have been touched my negativity and so many other people have and will. I’m hoping this helps another person know they aren’t alone and that you can also be an ally to those who are different from you.

Red, Maine, 25

I grew up not really knowing what was different about me….. and why. I was what everyone called a “tomboy”. I was never interested in girly things growing up and didn’t put on a dress until my 8th grade graduation, which in a way I was strongly encouraged to do.

My high school years were when I was beginning to struggle with my sexuality and tried to attempt to express my gender… but still not knowing I was trans at the time… I thought being transgender ment that you could only “think” you were supposed to be a man/women. I have always felt that I was born in the wrong body and that I should have been a man…. and well… just never felt like or wanted to be called a girl or a women. Being called a women never felt right. I’ve always had body issues. .. especially with my chest…it always felt weird having breasts…. I delt with having them for 25 years. Now that I have had top surgery its no longer an issue.

In conclusion, I will say that my journey has been a long and hard one and while my body may not be where I want it to be today…. I wouldn’t change a thing…. this is who I am…. I am and always will be a man.

Alex, Maine, 18

I was raised in a Christian conservative family, where the term gay or transgender never came up. We didn’t have any gay relatives or friends so I never knew anything about the topic. My whole life I was a tomboy who would play rough and tumble with the boys but then have to dress up to go to church with my mom in a dress or some other form of girly clothing. I knew something wasn’t right in my life; something was missing.

So, when I was around the age of thirteen I was at my aunts house watching a TV show called Degrassi and they had an Female to Male transgender guy and that sent me on a 1-2 year search on what it meant to be transgender. After over a year of knowing that was the right thing and knowing that was who I was. I came out to my mom at the age of 14, I can remember that day so clearly, it was mid February. We both had tears in our eyes when I told her the truth. “Mom, I’m not who I think I am, I think I’m suppose to be a boy” she couldn’t have been more supportive. The topic wasn’t exactly brought up for a couple months.

I got my first binder in May and started Testosterone on July 15, 2013, one month after my 15th birthday. That next February still 15 I had top surgery, I was known to be one of his youngest patients to have that surgery. It’s been a long journey and I could sit here for hours talking about my coming out story going into grave detail. But now I’m happy, loving life and living it the way it was meant to be.

Matthew, Maine, 20

I probably started fully realizing I was gay in the eighth grade. For the very few times I ever had a girlfriend, I would get into a relationship with them and nothing about it felt right to me. For a long time I thought it was just because I was scared to be with a girl, because of hormones I guess? (I was a really weird kid), so after eighth grade, I just wouldn’t date anybody, and I sort of just put it on the back burner for awhile, sort of just focusing on school.

My sophomore year I joined this college preparation program and met this guy who quickly became one of my best friends, and I felt really weird about him, like I had feelings, but at the time I didn’t know what they were. So skip forward to the summer before my junior year of high school, and after being around this amazing group of people I met at this program, I realize that I’m gay. There was just one holy shit moment when it all hit me, but I didn’t know what to do with it?

At the time I wasn’t even sure who I could tell. (I come from a pretty conservative area), I started by telling my best friend and when she took it really well, I told more and more people, and luckily they were all positive reactions. As for my family, I told them a few months later, I told my sister first only because she saw me crying and I think I was crying over a boy (lame) so I just told her. My brother, I told on New Years Eve because we were playing video games and I was winning and he wouldn’t stop calling me a faggot and gay and I was like “dude, I actually am”. He didn’t exactly believe me at first.

I told my parents a few days later, on January 2nd. We were having a family meeting about picking up the slack on chores and I had just been dumped for the first time and I was tired of hearing my dad’s voice, and I sort of just started crying, but I tried to hide it. When that didn’t work they asked me what was wrong and I just lost it. I was crying so hard I was shaking, and somehow in between sobs I managed to say I was gay. My parents took it really well and were actually pretty supportive. The only person in my life who has ever objected was a coworker at my first job, but to be honest, by then, I had so much love and support from everybody else in my life that it really didn’t matter.

Chase, Maine, 24

I was born and raised on the coast of Maine. My mother was just 15 years old when she had myself and my twin brother. My mother ran off with my father and my brother and I where put up for adoption. Fortunately I was adopted by my maternal grandmother, however my brother was tossed around from home to home. My grandmother felt she was unable to take him because “boys are too hard”. I always felt a very strong sense of insecurity and enjoyed my visits with my brother because I saw something in him that I wished to see in myself. We would often trade toys and clothes and I never remember identifying as a girl.

As time went on my internal struggle got harder. I used athletics as my outlet both emotionally and physically. I put my heart into everything I did. By the time I was in high school I knew exactly who I was and what I needed to do in order to feel right, but my grandmothers words “boys are too hard” always scared me. I did not want to be disowned like my brother simply for being a boy so I continued the internal battle.

After graduating I went to college on a full paid tennis scholarship. I had always taken athletics seriously, but college athletics was the real deal. I struggled my first semester of college because I spent so much time in my tennis uniform (skirt and a tanktop) that I felt very dysphoric. I almost quit the team because I just felt so awful. I knew I had to come out to my teammates before I quit, I had worked so hard to get where I was. Surprisingly my team was supportive. They helped me with educating others, and taking necessary steps to be more comfortable. They even took a vote to change our uniforms to shorts. We went on to win a national championship that season. I had never experienced a win so empowering. I realized I can love what I do AND be who I feel I am.

The summer after freshman year was devestating. I was diagnosed with an aggressive muscular cancer, of all places it was in my tennis serving arm. The treatment and surgeries left me unable to play tennis at a national champion level and subsiquently I had to transfer to another college. I took the time away from athletics to focus on my transition as well as my cancer treatment.

By my junior year of college I had been on testosterone for nearly three years, I had gender re-assignment surgery and my cancer was in remission. I felt better than ever but just one thing was missing, sports. I was going to the University of Maine (Augusta) and decided to try out for the men’s soccer team. I made the team as the starting goal keeper. The day I signed my NCAA contract to play on the team I was surprised to find protesters at the college. People had found out about my transition and did not want a “girl” playing on the men’s soccer team. I knew at that moment that I had a lot to prove. I signed my contract along with all of my teammates. I explained to them who I was and why people cared so much. I figured they would either accept it or protest it. My team did not judge me, nor did they even care. In fact, it brought us closer. From that moment on we united as one team with one goal. We all walked out of the school together, contacts in hand, and walked past the protesters without comment. We went on to have a successful and historic season as a team. I was even inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame at the school for the most goals saved in a season. I had become the first college athlete to sign an NCAA contract on both a women and men’s varsity team.

When I learned that I was the first I was really angry. I quickly learned that the gender stereotypes in sports are very strong and intimidating. Many trans* athletes end up quitting sports because they fear backlash, or do not know the rules associated with the leagues they play with. I took that realization as a personal pledge to continue to advocate and educate other LGBTQ athletes so they could have the freedom to keep playing the games they love.

Since that season I have graduated with my Masters degree in Social Work and am enrolled in a Ph.D program in psychology. I have a son with my beautiful girlfriend and am looking forward to opening my own private practice focusing on child psychopathology. I feel like transition is never easy, and new adventures can be scary, but paving the path for others to do what they love is the most rewarding feeling of all. While I am no longer playing college sports, I have participated in an adult softball league, and coached my local middle school basketball team to back-to-back championships. My journey is unique and it has taught me to focus on the good, and push through obstacles to achieve dreams, as nothing is impossible.

 

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