A Transgender Point of View

Alexis Smith, Writer

Transgender, also called Trans, is when people are born in a body different than the gender programmed into their brains. Their body is born one gender, but their minds are born with the opposite gender. It’s like taking a boy and putting a girl’s brain into his head and vice versa. 

It’s obviously very confusing, especially for transgenders themselves. They live a life where they are being told they’re a different gender than what their brain is telling them. 

Many people don’t understand this concept, including older people since they never grew up with anything like the gender identities we deal with today, and they think, “Why would a boy want to be a girl?” 

Due to people not understanding this switch at birth, people all across the globe are being mistreated for being transgender. Parents can’t understand their children, which causes frustration for both parties. This can lead to unkind words, verbal or physical abuse, and distance due to  misunderstandings. 

Central Hardin students Daniel Cunningham and Benjamin Wilde have had plenty of experiences with rude peers and family members. 

“People ran away from me in the bathroom once,” Cunningham said. “And the kids in Spanish were just like “Why is she saying “El””?

Bathrooms are extremely controversial in the trans community. There are people who agree with letting transgenders use bathrooms that match their gender identities, yet some businesses and companies only allow transgenders to use bathrooms assigned to their genders at birth. 

According to federal law, in government buildings, individuals (such as students at state-operated schools) may only use restrooms and changing facilities that correspond to the sex identified on their birth certificates.

At Central Hardin, students use bathrooms assigned to the gender on their birth certificate.

“People avoid me too,” Wilde said, “especially in the bathroom They’re like Woah, avoid eye contact, and quickly go somewhere else. And about the kids in Spanish, in Spanish class you pick your pronouns so you can be he or she, she doesn’t care. All the kids were like “Why would you use “El” because that’s the he pronoun.”

Because of these recurring instances, Cunningham and Wilde have learned to deal with the ignorance of others and turn the other cheek. 

“It’s kind of funny,” Cunningham said. “It’s like Oh, you’re so scared of me because I’m different?”

“I take it a lot lighter than I used to; I try to take things a lot light-heartedly,” Wilde said.

However, with as much hardship as each transgender faces, a lot of them are so much happier that they’ve come out. They each shared their stories on how each of them found out they were transgender. 

“I was watching a TV show called Big Brother a few years ago with my mom, and there was this woman on there and she said she was transgender,” Cunningham said. “I looked at my mom and asked what that meant and she said it means the woman used to look like a dude. So I asked her, Can that happen the other way? and she said yes. In my mind something clicked, and I was like I finally know. I mean, I knew for most of my life. When I was in 4th grade, we had a girls vsx boys war and I went to my friends, Brandon and Tristan, and I asked them if I could just be on their team. I felt accepted and that I belonged to the boys team. The girls would never let me sit with them at lunch either, but I never wanted to anyways. When I finally came out, at first my mom just kind of ignored it, but now we are more open about it. Some of my family still doesn’t know, but the important people in my life know.”

“So, I was online and I found out about gay people and I thought it was cool and didn’t really see a problem with it,” Wilde said. “No one influenced me to think that, I just didn’t care. And I thought maybe I was gay, so I went through that phase, but it didn’t feel right. Then, I thought about being bisexual because I knew that I didn’t like just girls, but then I realized it feels really bad to say that I’m a girl who likes men and women. I didn’t know why, I had nothing against that for other people at all, but it felt weird. I thought things over and told myself What if I was a bisexual dude? They’re really cool. I am and I’m really cool. But the same thing [as Cunningham], I kind of knew for a while, I just didn’t know what it was. After I came out to my parents, my mom was fine with it, but confused and my dad didn’t care. My dad looked at me and said, You always were, so I don’t care.” 

Transgenders also undergo thousands of dollars of surgery to finally feel like themselves; the body they were supposed to be in. Both say they are having top surgery, but are unsure about genital replacement, since it is a lengthy and expensive process. 

 

*Names have been changed for privacy reasons.