"Trans what?" you might be asking the screen currently in front of you. Allow me to explain. By definition, in the Cambridge Dictionary, transmogrification is "the act or process of changing or being changed completely." I'd also wager to guess that you noticed how 'trans' is separated with a hyphen from the rest of the word. "Is he using a word that begins with 'trans' that is relevant to his New Year's resolutions because it has something to do with being transgender?" You got me. Somehow I knew my brilliant, and totally not overused, play on words wouldn't pass over your heads. Now that you have easily deducted what my fresh start will be centered around, allow me to regale you with a story of how I got to this point.
It all started on a cold winter day thirty-five years ago... Hm? What's that? Oh, you don't need my entire back story? It's a pretty unique story, I promise y-... Okay, you got me. It's more depressing than anything else, so I shall spare you the details. I will keep moving on then and endeavor to get to the point.
This year I resolve to be a happier and healthier individual. However, my goal isn't the typical run of the mill resolution to get healthier. Just thinking about having to eat salad all the time makes my stomach cramp. No, seriously, too much salad ruins my tummy and my day thanks to Crohn's. I even like salad, but too much, and I regret it. Anyway, the road to my happier and healthier resolution will require a lot of non-food related changes. Like most people, I like change about as much as a cat likes being given a bath, but change is a good thing. That's what I keep telling myself. I know that change is truly the only way to have a fresh start in life in all seriousness. A person can't keep doing the same thing over and over again and expect anything different to happen. That's the definition of insanity and believe me when I say that I already have insanity in spades.
Circling back to that first paragraph, let me tell you my resolution for the year is to portray better the man I want to be. This is all relatively new to me still. A year and a half to maybe two years ago, I realized a significant portion of my depression was partly due because I lived life as a woman. At the time, it was only something I could nod my head at and continue. You see, my friends, I was dealing with something far more pressing at the time... an addiction. I was, and I suppose for all intents and purposes I still am, an alcoholic. It's not the proudest time of my life, and I'll always have guilt, but I've learned to stop being ashamed of it. It took me a while to want to seek help after hitting rock bottom, but I'm glad that I did, or I doubt I'd be here now to tell all you fine people my story.
To sum up, I'll give a quick rundown of when I was learning how to live sober again as it all happened fast. One moment I was in the ER for suicidal ideations, and the next, I was in detox. Straight after that, I was in rehab for a month. It was the best decision of my life. If any of you reading this is suffering from addiction... don't give up on yourself. You're beautiful and strong, and you deserve to be happy. Please don't forget to love yourself. Going to rehab not only helped me to learn how to manage to stay sober, it's been over a year now, it also helped me to realize why I had started drinking in the first place. Again I will spare you all the details of my painful childhood. You should know that I grew up in a super conservative Christian household. Before you go thinking that they're the sort to treat LGBTQ+ people badly, let me assure you they don't. They disapprove of their lifestyle, which is wrong, but they're not mean to them.
When I began to start questioning my gender, I didn't have hardly any knowledge or information regarding the LGBTQ+ community. Let me specify. I didn't know about gender identity or what it really meant. Sexuality I understood and had known I was bisexual years before this. I'm not proud to admit this, but I used to be one of those ignorant people that thought there were only two genders. "Gasp! How could you be so ignorant?" I understand that sentiment. I was raised strict Christian I had to learn I was wrong. Now that I know more, I try to help educate others about what gender identity really means.
Once I accepted that I did not feel comfortable being my assigned gender at birth, such a weight lifted off my shoulders. Finally! I was free! I knew who I was! If I could go back to talk to that Jack, I would have told him to enjoy that feeling as long as possible. Too soon, the joy of finding myself was quickly and rudely slapped across the face with a wet fish. It wasn't even a pretty fish. It was more like one of those blobfish. You know the ones. They're pink and have a nose big enough to rival Nixon. Now that I knew who I was, how was I ever going to become that person?
If it were me living the bachelor life, I would have no hesitation in starting to transition. I know my family would be confused and probably would have trouble with not misgendering or deadnaming me. I'll reiterate that my family does not treat people that are different with malice, but they are set in their beliefs. Please, my dear audience, don't get me wrong. I love my family more than anything, and they would never mistreat me or disown me for being trans. I think they would try to talk with me to change my mind about not being a female, but I could handle that. The thing that is holding me back is my husband.
My husband, whom I call Scoundrel, is the most amazing man in the world. I know every partner says that about each other, but this man... boy howdy. I'm not religious, but I believe in a higher power, and the fact I got lucky enough to win my Scoundrel's heart is proof enough He's real. My Scoundrel is the whole package. He's caring, damn sexy, intelligent, laid-back, and his humor is just the best. Granted, it is often an odd sense of humor, but merely because he has a comedy addiction. It is that sense of humor that keeps me going on rough days. He stayed by my side during the darkest part of my life when, honestly, I would not have blamed him if he'd left. I wanted to leave me, so the fact he stayed still bumfuzzles me. I don't know what I would do without him in my life.
Isn't there always a 'but' after talking about something that makes you incredibly happy? It's never fair, not that life is ever fair, but this time I'm taking it very personally. You see, good fellows, my husband, is cisgender and heterosexual. Well, he has a few exceptions. Like Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, but who can blame him for that one? I hope knowing this makes it a little more obvious what my hesitation in transitioning might be about. I am not so obviously a man since I look feminine. However, that's where the femininity stops. I've always been one of the guys. Several of my friends have even commented that I don't act like a normal woman. I really don't know how I didn't see I was a man sooner.
My husband and I have only talked a little bit about me being trans, but it hasn't been easy, to be honest. To be fair, when I first told him about not wanting to be a woman, I was pretty drunk. I doubt that was a good way to tell him, so the fact we didn't address it then is reasonable. He's very much like me because he doesn't know a lot about the LGBTQ+ community, but he is learning. Since the beginning of the year, I've been more open about what I'm thinking and feeling. I wear binders now and buy men's clothes, which I know my husband doesn't care about. Yet, the thing holding me back from starting hormone therapy is the fear that I will lose him completely.
Considering how he stood by me during my addiction (trust me when I say I would have dumped my own ass if I could have), this fear is baseless. He loves me and not my body. It's insulting to assume he's going to leave me for merely broaching the subject of transition—that's why this year, I will be more open and honest with him. Emotions have never been my strong suit. I'm not good with mine, I'm not good with others, and I'm not good with them in any compacity. I know how vital communication is, though, and as much as I do love him, I need to suck it up, be a man, and talk openly about the way I'm feeling.
If I can start being more honest and open with the person I love the most, then indeed, I will find the courage to come out to my family. I'm thirty-five years old, and I'm not getting any younger. I owe it to my husband and family, and myself to stick to this resolution this year.
About the author
I am a trans-man. Whatever I make here will go towards paying for things I need to transition. My goal is to look like the doctored photo of myself on my profile. I'm excited to get writing and to read y'alls amazing stories too.