#IAmMe I.Am.Jay

“My family believes anyone who is anything other than straight or cis is just following a trend.”

I’m a pre-T trans guy, who’s only recently come out to himself. As a kid, my family was extremely religious. Of course, I presented as a female, and our church didn’t allow girls to wear pants. I wore only skirts (and dresses, blouses, etc.) until the end of 6th grade. I didn’t have many friends growing up, and those I was friends with were just church members or cousins (who were actually really mean to me). I had two older brothers, though they had little to no influence on me. Still, I was quite the “tomboy.”

“My mom was actually really upset that I wasn’t girly like she wanted.”

When I first started wearing pants, I discovered the “edgy” side of myself as well, which no one in my family really likes. Up until the 9th grade, I was extremely homophobic. I was pretty isolated from the world and had only heard of trans people as more of a fetish for people. I was disgusted by it. I had the early Facebook rants against gays and everything. Homophobic trash, honestly. Despite this, I felt more comfortable when referred to as a guy. For example, my cousins and I would play store and I always ran the register. I pretended to be a boy and always go by Toby or Victor.

It was around the 8th grade when self-esteem issues became a big deal.
I hated myself.

I self-harmed, starved myself, planned suicide (Fear kept me from doing it, though). When I reached out to my parents, they believed it was me trying to be more “emo” to “fit in.” Or that I should just pray more.

I never considered me being trans, mainly because I still had next to no knowledge that people like that existed and lived normal lives.

I slowly left my homophobic stage when I discovered yaoi, but I found that when looking at guys, whether anime or real, I wanted to BE them instead of BE WITH them. I started fantasizing myself in those situations, and not in a sexual way. In the 9th grade, I wore a pretty boyish outfit and someone called me a dyke. Instead of being offended, I was flattered that they thought I looked boyish. When I met my boyfriend, I opened up about my feelings.

I remember the moment it really hit me like it was yesterday.

I was in the 11th grade, and up until then, I had all but flat out ignored my feelings of gender confusion from fear of my family rejecting me, despite how happy I knew I’d feel. I was outside, after school, waiting for my dad to pick me up. I was leaning against the wall reading a book, and imagined myself as a sort of grunge looking boy leaning there. I instantly fell in love with that image. I felt so cocky, so at peace with myself. Reality dragged me back, but those feelings stayed.

A few months later, I bought a wig to cosplay 2D from Gorillaz. The color and style was completely wrong, but I found out I looked like a 13 year old emo boy when I wore it. Now, I had dressed as a boy with a wig with my friend before and loved it. Even went on Omegle and pretended to be a cis guy. So, I started taking pictures in my new wig and made a fake Facebook.

The idea was to get people to like me and then reveal that I was a girl, as a joke. At least, that’s what I told people. Thus, Alexander Jason was born.

I got super into it. I even bought a newer, better wig and became super Facebook famous. I averaged about 600 likes a picture. The idea of revealing myself as a girl was long gone, of course. I kept that up for about 2 years. During this time, I went through a really tough time with my anxiety and depression. I had depersonalization really bad, and at times had to write down “I am here,” over and over to keep myself grounded in reality. What always made me feel better that, without makeup or a binder, people still saw me as a boy, and actually really liked me.

I can’t count how many times I’ve come out to myself and my boyfriend but then shrink back into the closet in fear. I came out to my mom about my crossdressing and she, of course, flipped out.

“She thought I identified with the LGBT community because I had the desire to rebel against the family and who I really am.”

When she compared me being bisexual to being a pedophile, I knew then that coming out would mean losing them. 

From there, life constantly kicked me and my boyfriend in the face. We lost our jobs, got our home taken from us, things just kept coming.

What kept me sane was being Jason. 

I bought my first binder, and even my first cologne. I felt so good when I’d smell that. I eventually ditched the wig and got my hair cut, which I’d always kept long. I also finally got my lip pierced (before then I’d use fake snakebites).

Finally, after nearly 3 years from the birth of my “guy persona,” I decided that I would make a new Jason Facebook, a real one.

I figured maybe having people I knew in real life seeing me as a boy would make me see if it felt better or not. I can’t describe how freeing and wonderful it feels. I want to come out to my family, even though it would mean losing them. I know my mom suspects it, but hasn’t said anything yet (my hair has been the biggest giveaway). I want to start T, to get rid of these damn boobs, to be who I am on the inside, but it’s hard. I’m financially stuck between a rock and a hard place, and rely on my parents to get by at all times.

Though I’m pulling and scratching to get out of it, with time, I know I’ll start T, come out, and live as who I am, 24/7.

Until then, I occasionally wear a mask of the girl I was once forced to be.