I am a 21 year old transgender writer interested in politics, poetry and human relationships/sexuality. I do freelance journalistic work and am a journalism student at UEL.
It's nearing Christmas and I'm sat in a lecture room at University being given my next assignment. I have to investigate something and write a feature about what I find. I decided to investigate child exploitation in London, and along the way I found out that the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) is in special measures for the failings they have made in this area. I cannot show my submitted coursework, but here is a report on the issue that I feel needs to be known about:
September 2017 seems worlds away now. I was discharged from the mental health services up in Yorkshire and moving my stuff back down South to London. I was in a good place. I'd completed therapy and, armed with my medication, I felt like I could take on anything. I felt like the world was my oyster, and that I could now cope without the help of professionals.
I'm in quite a unique position to write this piece; as both a transgender woman and a budding journalist, I'm seeing two sides to a heated debate—and I'm seeing the reasonable points of both sides.
Being diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD) was both a relief and a living nightmare for me. On the one hand, I knew I had most of the symptoms of the mental illness, and it explained a heck of a lot for me. I knew deep down that now I had a diagnosis, I could get the much needed treatment. But on the other hand, I knew I'd be living with a stigma looming over my head. I knew that people would judge me once they found out about my diagnosis. I was to become the "crazy" one of my friends and family.
If I had a pound for each time I heard phrases such as, "Transgender is a mental illness" I'd be quite the rich woman by now. It's needless to say that being transgender is not a mental illness—but transgender people are more likely to experience mental illness than the general population, and this is a scary fact that can be ignored no longer.
Love - that one emotion that nobody truly understands. Sometimes it feels like the most amazing thing on earth, and others it feels like your heart is being stabbed by a thousand knives. It's a complicated mess most of the time, especially when you suffer from a personality disorder that makes all of your emotions even more intense.
It may come as no surprise that, as a transgender woman, I'm not always comfortable with my body. I hate my body. I hate what my body tells the world I am. I feel completely at odds with my body, and feel totally trapped by it.
What happened? The thoughts racing through your head are like a million knives being stabbed into your throat. Where did he touch you?