In June 2012, I came out to my friends and family as genderqueer. I asked everyone to use gender neutral pronouns and never refer to me as female/she/her again. I explained that this means I am not male or female and never have been.
In October 2012 I dressed up as a zombie police officer for Halloween. I gave the character a beard. In fact the beard was so affirming that I wore it the whole of the next day and really didn’t want to wash it off. I remember telling my best friend at the time that I thought I might need to transition. She was supportive, but I was too scared and buried it deep inside me like I had done my whole life.
Over time I watched my trans friends transition and I was secretly jealous of their ability to be who they were. I kept telling myself that I didn’t need to transition. That who I was, was perfectly valid. The dysphoria was eating me alive nonetheless.
Around 2014 I redefined my gender identity as nonbinary. It means basically the same thing as genderqueer and sits as an umbrella term for people for don’t conform to binary gender norms. I liked it better. Enby is also an epic colloquial term. I also decided that this identity was a transgender identity. I now told people I was trans as part of my nonbinary identity.
Frankie came to be in April 2016. I needed to move away from my overly feminine name given to me when I was born. This was tough at work and initially with my friends. My family, never really having got the hang of my gender neutral pronouns, have still not got the hang of my new name as of November 2017.
From April 2016 to April 2017 I was happy just to be Frankie. My gender identity was still nonbinary, but instead of presenting in a fluid way where I would drift between feminine and masculine, I presented as entirely masculine.
At the end of April 2017 I was drunk in Cardiff. I was sat on my own outside of Brewdog enjoying the spring sunshine and everything I had been suppressing about my gender identity came to the surface. I needed to transition. I needed to masculinise physically. I text my mum and then told Facebook.
How I identify now is Transmasculine Nonbinary and I will be beginning my physical transition in April/May 2018. Here are some things you need to know:
- The NHS has made this process very difficult. They have been messing around sending me to mental health units and demeaning my experience for the past seven months, when I should have been referred to the gender clinic and been on their two year waiting list by now. I am still pursuing this route because there is no way I can afford my whole transition privately. However, I was able to afford two private consultations which will allow me to begin transitioning in Spring next year.
- My transition will start with regular injections of testosterone. This will push my body into what is essentially “male” puberty. My shoulders will broaden. My muscle and fat distribution will change. My voice will deepen and hopefully I’ll get a decent amount of body hair, especially on my face. (There are other changes too but you don’t really need to know about them. :P) I will appear to society as a “man”, but I will still have boobs. They will be flattened by a binder, when I find one that doesn’t cause me sensory issues.
- Somewhere down the line I will have what is know as top surgery. I will have my boobs surgically removed and replaced with pecs. My boobs are a massive source of dysphoria. If I could have them taken off first, I would. People use my boobs to gender me and I hate it.
- I will not be having bottom surgery. My cunt does not cause me any dysphoria at all.
- This does not mean I am a man. I will never be a man. I am nonbinary. I do not fit in any binary boxes of gender nonsense. I will continue to use gender neutral pronouns.
I need you all to know that I have gone through a lot of emotional pain to get to this point. I NEED you to respect my pronouns and my name. Making mistakes was fine to start with, but it’s been a year and a half and mistakes are starting to look more and more like they are deliberate. If you continue to dead name and misgender me, I will have to remove you from my life.
This has been your final warning.
5 thoughts on “A Letter To My Friends & Family”
Its been & is still a long journey Frankie. I will do all I can to support you .
Hi Frankie, unfortunately I haven’t had the pleasure in meeting you buy have been friends on fb for a while now. I have admired from afar the way you have handles and coped with all the negativity from certain quarters and have nothing but respect and admiration for you being able to just be you. I have my own issues of which I have been fighting for years with my own sexuality but your openness and frank words do give me strength. I can only offer my support to you transition and hope you find happiness.
Thanks for the support Paul. I think I’m gonna need it. None of my family have been in touch since I posted this.
Thanks for sharing your story. I commend you for standing up for your right to be accepted and respected. Best of luck with your physical transition!