Every day I read a new story about a young trans* person and it warms my heart. We are finally winning our battles. Even with the douchey bumps in the road, (Hi, NOM! See you in California again!) we seem to be progressing as a society for more acceptance and love of who we are. This really inspires me to be a better person and to create a better, loving world for everyone. This letter is for trans* youth.
When I was a teenager, I never thought that I would be able to transition at 30, let alone at 15 like some of you amazing young people. It warms my heart to see trans* teens winning homecoming kings and queens. I always harbored a dream of being a homecoming queen. Now I feel like I vicariously get to experience the happiness of that win. I am sure I am not the only one of your older brothers and sisters who have this feeling.
To know that you get to play on the sports team of your actual gender in California and some other places warms my heart. I can’t imagine the relief you must feel being able to just be yourself and kick some major ass on the field or in the swimming pool. Being mobbed by your teammates after you hit the winning home run must feel awesome. For too long, many of your older brothers and sisters felt constrained to the sidelines or sometimes we internalized our own issues and played sports that we hated just so we could fit in. I couldn’t tell you how much I hated playing football, but I did it because I felt it was a way to cover up my innate femaleness and not get picked on.
The big one. The Bathroom. Everyone needs one. Now there are options that don’t involve getting bullied when you use the wrong bathroom. Feeling safe is so important. I am glad us stupid adults are finally realizing we need to protect you and that it’s getting better (thanks, Dan Savage). I love that we are moving towards gender neutral bathrooms. I don’t understand the fascination with how we go or what we use. We are all fundamentally the same, ya know? Do gendered bathrooms necessarily matter all the time? Especially if they are single stalls? At least we are progressing!
I look up to you youngin’s. You are kicking ass. Some of you are being outspoken like we need and some of you are being quiet, exactly what you need to survive. We are all in this together. Us adults, we will help you as much as we can, but I believe we learn more from you. I am still in shock after meeting the most adorable trans* child. She is five and there is no doubt in my mind she is who she is supposed to be. Children know a shit ton more than we give them credit for.
Trans* kids. Thank you so much. From the bottom of my 31 year old heart. You guys are a national treasure and are teaching me new things every day. I am so happy to be able to continue to help make it better for trans* people. I know you are opening peoples’ hearts and minds every day. Have a great rest of your life,
Your older sister, Alyson, loves you all!