Not a phase

by Allison Blaylock
Transgender Advice Columnist

Dear Alli,

Lately, I have heard of several people who state they “are no longer trans,” like they were going through a phase. As a trans woman, this concerns me. I am afraid many people will get the idea all trans people are just “going through a phase” in their life.

It is not a phase. I was born in the wrong body and have lived authentically and happy for nearly 15 years. Please let me know if this is something you are also hearing at support groups or otherwise and let us know how to let people know trans is not a phase.

Annie for real; Arkansan for life!

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Dear Annie,

I completely understand where you are coming from; transgender people are who we are. We fought for years to be authentic to ourselves and live a truthful life. Society is starting to say things like, “Oh, so even the transgender people are saying they are not transgender anymore, so this must be a fad or a mental issue.”

I am learning many transgender people find they are tired of lifting and carrying around this kind of label. When some get through their surgical changes, work, family and most friends accept them as the person they are. At this point, for the most part, the label is dropped. Then they are simply referred to as men or women, not transgender.

I have friends who say, “why do I need any label if everyone sees me as me?” The truth is if we don’t keep the word circulating, we lose our momentum.

With the current climate of politics in our country, which I don’t care to debate as it is very touchy, people are now finding themselves scared even to admit they are trans. In the media we see more hate crimes being committed against transgender people. These occurrences take us back to the question of, “If I am passing or blending into society, then why should I put a target on my back?”

I don’t see or hear much about people who are detransitioning, but for their safety, they may go stealth regardless of their place in the journey.

We are living in a time where we have momentum, and we see people like you who have been living authentically for 10+ years. I think at this point, some are tired of the fight, and some want just to live and be happy.

I am not sure what the cards will hold for me, though I have honestly felt that my voice as an openly out transgender individual is one that has helped many. In my social media circles, people are seeing what it’s like to go through the ups and downs of being transgender.

I also see compassion from many of these people, which gives me hope that people will be able to deal with labels better. Many in this younger generation are not wanting to live with the labels, which is why so many are considering themselves non-binary or gender non-conforming.

As for you letting people know trans is not a phase; just be your authentic self, and people will see your confidence and know you are truly living the way you were always meant to live.

I wish you the best on your journey. Always remember we transition differently. Even to the point of dropping the identity of trans and just calling ourselves just as we are; men or women.

The only thing stronger than being you is being the authentic you.


Copyright The Gayly – April 22, 2018 @ 10:25 a.m. CDT.