For most of my life, I was happy with myself. I felt like I fit in. In middle school, I started having anxiety attacks. My body started changing too. I started to look like someone I didn't like.
While I was trying to figure the type of person I wanted to grow up to be, I would often look towards men. But when I thought more into it, I didn't want to be the female version. I wanted to be just as masculine.
My advice to any trans or queer kid is to be open about it, and always love yourself. There is a lot of bad out in the world, but we are all worth every bit of good.
My name's Jay and I'm a 15-year-old gay transgender guy. While I'm not very active in the church anymore, I was raised Mormon. For most of my life, I was happy with myself. I was happy with my skills and my body.
When I was younger, I felt normal. I felt like all the girls in my class. I felt like I fit in. But then, things started to change. In middle school, I started having anxiety attacks.
For so long, no one could figure out why. I didn't even know. All I knew was that they were awful and made me feel like I was dying. While I tried to figure all this out, my body started changing too. I had hit puberty and I started to look like someone I didn't like. I brushed it off for a while.
For a while before I realized who I was I would often say "I wish I were a guy," or "Life would be so much easier if I were a boy." For a long time I didn't think I actually meant it.
But as I became more involved with the LGBT+ community as an ally, and started learning about the way the world worked outside of my compulsory cisgender/heterosexual world, I thought it was incredible. I still couldn't fathom that I belonged there; I wouldn't accept it for a while.
High school is the time that you're really finding your identity and becoming yourself, and that's exactly what my freshman year was. It began with a lot of confusion. I had these feelings towards guys, feelings that just didn't feel normal. But you know, that's just how girls feel about guys, right? But, there was something about how I felt about guys that made me feel almost ashamed. I was struggling with a lot of internalized homophobia, but considering I still thought I was a girl, I brushed it off.
While I was trying to figure the type of person I wanted to grow up to be (which I often still do to this day), I would often look towards men. I would look up to these amazing musicians and artists and characters. But, like with everything else, I brushed it off, until one day, I didn't anymore. I was watching some videos of the singer Brendon Urie, my current role model, and I was thinking about how I wanted to be exactly like him when I grew up. But when I thought more into it, I didn't want to be the female version. I wanted to be just as masculine.
So, I started looking into gender identity more. At first I tried to convince myself that it was just for research and that I wasn't trans. I was only able to believe that lie for so long.
So I started out slow. At first I thought I was just non-binary. That started to feel too feminine as well, so I started to self-identify as a trans boy and use only he/him pronouns. It was so freeing. I felt like me.
However, I was still trapped in a world I knew would not understand me. So, I only told my best friend. It was our secret: I was a gay trans boy. It was hard to be in the closet. I fell into a depression that only ever got worse.
I started going to therapy and we decided that a lot of my anxiety and depression was because of staying in the closet. So, we made a plan to tell my mother.
My mother’s initial reaction was that of a performative ally, saying she loved and supported me but also being casually homophobic and transphobic. She said things like, "You're too beautiful to be a boy." It took a lot of patience and love to get her to really accept me. Now, she takes me to Pride, loves and supports me and my boyfriend, and is talking about starting my medical transition.
While I had a really rough start, I am in a place now where I am starting to truly love myself. My advice to any trans or queer kid is to be open about it, teach people how to teach themselves, and love yourself. Always love yourself. There is a lot of bad out in the world, but we are all worth every bit of good.