Saturday, December 18, 2010

Quick Rant on introductions

Recently I have been getting really annoyed with the need to say how many months your on T or state that your pre-T or surgery whenever the need to introduce yourself to people on the transgender spectrum or other FTM identified people arises. I don't understand why it has to be mentioned, do I have to prove that I belong here? Is it a way for me to rank myself among others? Is it a way to deduce where I belong? I don't understand it. I hate saying my name is and I am pre-everything. Then at the same time I hate it when I say I am pre-everything and I am instantly placed in this "child" like view and I know nothing about life or anything else. It is rather frustrating. Why is there this masculinity check based off the length in time a person has been on T? In my experience it seems like a person's masculinity, manliness and rating of who is a better man is based off T and surgery and how long a person has been on T or how much surgery a person has. It infuriates me because there is so much more to what makes a man, and it also leaves out so many men that can't take T for medical reasons, or whatever reasons they have. It sucks having to introduce yourself in a FTM forum and then being asked how long on T or something else like that, then being honest and getting treated like a second-class citizen after that.

Friday, December 10, 2010

updates

So I know it has been a while since I had really posted something. This is in part has been me being a bit weary about posting something that wasn't positive or at least hopefully or productive I guess. Things recently have been really rough and a lot of stuff has not been positive. I have been trying to work on stuff and figure stuff out and try to adjust to a new job and new place. In my efforts of trying not to be a gloomy Gus I began to realize that I started this blog to give another perspective of being trans, the stages of transitioning, and the complication of being a competitive athlete and transgender at the same time, and in that I started hiding more because of the fear that my negativity about somethings would put a damper on things and also deter people away. At the same time these negative experiences are what I go through have been the main aspect of my life right now and how to navigate through them and deal with them.
I wanted to start by addressing some emails I have received recently on whether or not I am going to join in the "It gets better" campaign. I am not, for the main reason being I am still waiting for it to get better. I can't say it does when I just haven't experienced it yet, I would feel like I am lying and I can't do that. I know it gets better for a lot of people, and I know and believe that Kids NEED to believe that and that it is important for them to have something to believe in, but that isn't my experience and I can't lie about that. I have dealt for years with negativity of being a part of the LGBT community and I am still waiting for it to improve. I have lost jobs, had to leave jobs, lost family, and friends and had the shit beaten out of me. This is real and it is painful and it is something I continue to navigate on a regular basis. I know it can get better but it is a lot more complicated than that and sometimes being told that is just as a blow as the negativity getting thrown at you. I say that because I know when things were really tough which really were only a matter of months ago that last thing I wanted to hear was It gets better; because to me that is like "oh well, I know this sucks but just deal and someday it will get better" When will it? And it is nice that it does but what do I do until then, how do I get through all this, how do I convince myself that this is worth the future of better? I think tools should be given to help people get through what they are getting through not just words. For these reasons I can not add to it, I don't think I am the right person.
But it is for these reasons, it is for these negativities and for all the shit that LGBT youth go through that things need to change. So that brings into the next update. I have the honor to be a part of an advisory group for the GLSEN Sports Project being headed by Pat Griffin. This project is attempting to make sports and PE classes safe spaces and equally available to all LGBT youth. I am so happy to be a part of this advisory group and it was great to be able to go to NY and meet all the amazing people involved in it. I am really pleased with all the different perspectives and ideas that were brought up and really excited by what this is going to bring about. This is truely important and very necessary in a day and age where we are as a society waking up to the very real reality of being Queer in schools and the fact the bullying is out of control and taking the lives of kids. Sports are a place of socialization but at the same time they are also one scariest places for LGBT youth and adults for that matter, and they can also be one of the most unsafe places for LGBT people. It shouldn't be that way, people shouldn't be afraid of being who they because they are athletes or enjoy sports. Kids shouldn't be terrified to go into a locker room to change for gym class. Kids shouldn't be treating people the way they are because they are not gender normative or heteronormative. This is a very real and serious issue. I am happy that GLSEN and Pat are putting this together and grabbing the bull by the balls and addressing these issues and others, so that kids can be themselves and feel safe doing it in their home away from home, school.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Another trans-athlete

This is a very well written article about a young man playing division 1 college basketball. He is very brave and I am glad his university has been handling as well as it appears. I hope that he doesn't need to deal any negativity and he can focus on excelling at his sport.
http://www.outsports.com/os/index.php/component/content/article/24-people/338-transgender-man-to-play-for-womens-basketball-team

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

In Memory of Coach Joe Woodhead

Yesterday my coach Joe Woodhead past away. This is a huge loss for track and field, Bates College, throwing, division III athletics and to his family, me and all the people that had the honor of having him in our lives. He dedicated his life to coaching and made his athletes feel like family. He was a great coach, teacher and man. If it wasn't for him I would have never thrown, and acquired all successes I have had in my career as a thrower, and in my life outside of throwing. He was like a grandfather to me and taught me more about being a good human being and to be the best in life than anyone else has.
Thank you Coach for everything you have done, for your dedication, your passion and belief and in all your athletes. If it wasn't for you I don't think I would have finished college, Thank you. You are and were loved very much and will be greatly missed.
RIP Coach Woodhead <3

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

NCLR Report Part 2

I haven't had a chance to really talk about how much this report that the NCLR and It takes a team wrote up. I have the link in the last post, and once again I want to thank Pat and Helen for all their work and advocacy to create this.
Why is this important? This is important because as a transgender athlete no matter where you are in the spectrum of transitioning and coming out, sports currently are not conducive to our identities and do not support differences in gender identities and presentations. There are many talented and passionate athletes that can not and will not reach their full potential because of the barriers innately in place because of current sport doctorine. When I came out in college I was terrified not so much of being out but of losing my opportunity to compete and be an athlete. There were no guidelines, or resources for me at all. This report is an excellent resource for athletes, coaches, teammates, athletic director, and competitors. It allows for a safer environment for trans-athletes to come out, compete, and be themselves fully. The stress will still be there, the fear will probably still be there, because I don't think it is possible to come out and begin living as that person without fear and stress. But Now we can come out knowing there are people there to help us, there are reccommended guidelines, and there are resources to help.
There are athletes that hide who they are until the.y finally can't take it anymore and leave the sports or worse because sports don't allow us to be who we are. We are not able to compete at our fullest, because we have to deal with the stress of either hiding who we are to everyone else, including ourselves sometimes. Or we are who we are and we are dealing with the discrimination, hate, and misunderstanding of everyone. We are often times not competing to the best of our abilities since as everyone knows ya can't be at the top of your game if you are being pulled in a thousand different directions. This report allows us some relief, something to refer people to, something to use as a guide so it isn't up to us solely.
I hope that more and more people are able to find themselves in a place to be able to come out and be more comfortable to be who they are so that we are not seen as taboos anymore.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Trans athletes rights

This is the report the NCLR, and it takes a team, and the women's sports foundation created. It helps make competitive sports more accessible and inclusive to transgender athletes. This is an amazing document that can really change a lot of lives and help all of trans athletes be ourselves and still be able to compete!!!
http://nclrights.wordpress.com/2010/10/04/groundbreaking-report-urges-high-school-and-college-athletics-to-establish-standard-national-policies-for-transgender-student-athletes/

Friday, September 10, 2010

Taking gender away from athlete

I was having a discussion with some people most of whom are on the trans-spectrum and I was asked how can I compete as woman and not have that innately bother me and destroy my self-image anymore. I never really thought of it as that. For me I am not a female athlete, I am just an athlete, a thrower. I never really thought of myself as a female or a male thrower only as a thrower. When I enter that circle it is the only time I can be completely gender-free and be completely free of the gender stigmatizations. While I may compete in the female division, most of us aren't there trying to prove our femininism or our status as a woman we are trying to be great athletes. I have had to prove my "femaleness" at meets but even with that the circle and the competition are my forms of heaven. I am free to be what I want to be, I control everything in that space, I can be me without any worry of what is "it".
For me sports were always my way of getting away. I had trouble dealing with my identity because I didn't know what was "wrong" with me until I was much older and until then I felt alone, helpless and completely lost and disgusted with what I saw myself as. No matter what the sport I was competing in I was able to escape during those moments, because I could be seen as an athlete and nothing else. I am an athlete, and when i am seen as such I feel whole. Being an athlete is gender-less to me, it is my way is stepping away from the constraints of being male or female or being lost in translation somewhere in between. An athlete is so much more then male or female it is character description, a sign of passion, a way of life, a religon, a cult it is so much more than male or female.
An Athlete is an athlete simply put and for me that is freedom.

Turmoil

So the last few months has been crazy. I have been dealing with a lot of inner and outer turmoil all around my identity. I am still at this PT clinic, I still hate my job. I love you my patients and working with them but working with my boss is what I imagine working for Stalin would be like. I need to take control of this, grab a bull by the balls and stand up for myself and leave this job. I just afraid to be jobless no matter the time period. My job has been really testing me psychologically, being called she all day long, having it over emphasized so that the patients have no doubt "what I am", being called a cold hard person and told I need to let go. Well what am I supposed to let go of when I can't be myself in this environment? I am tired of being told I eat too much, I am athlete we eat!
My inner turmoil I feel like has in-part been fueled by how hard work has drained me, and in part due to how much pain my body has been experiencing recently. I have been fighting a lot with myself on what to do with the rest of my life. I have been doing a lot of thinking about transitioning and I have started therapy which has helped a lot. I have been struggling with the fear of leaving everything (at least that is what it feels like) behind and transition which I am more and more wanting and needing. I started to realize that I have been putting my life on hold for 6-8 meets a year, that I am miserable every other day of the year. But I am also torn because I really want to be a trans activist a trans-athlete activist, but at the same time I am wondering if I may make a bigger impact as a transitioned man competing in the men's field. It is scary though sports is my safe place. I also started to realize that I am driving 2 hours once a week to go to Therapy, I don't know if I would be willing to do that if there wasn't something that needs to change.
I want to make it last my dreams in track, but I am wondering if it is really starting to hurt me both physically and mentally.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Invictus

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley

I think this poem says it all

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My recent vacation

I recently went on vacation to Provincetown, Ma; the cape's version of gay town USA. I went there with my fiance and my best friend and her wife, it was great except for a whole week I was a lesbian. I thought being in ptown I would more accepted for myself, but it was harder for me to be a man there than it was anywhere else other than work. It was really unnerving. I would go out and only be seen as a woman, a butch dyke out in Ptown. I thought this place was friendly but I really never felt it. At one point I was getting ready to drop about 300$ in MG Leather and the owner was feeling my arms and grabbed my ass thinking I was some hot dyke, but the minute I said I was not a dyke I am a trans guy I got instantly treated like a disgusting It. First of all don't touch me I have a personal bubble stay the fuck in it. Second of all why am I hot as a dyke but the minute I am something else I am disgusting? I walked out after she said she could tell a tranny from a mile a way. Well this tranny walked the fuck out of that. It was like that every where I went. It was really hard. I don't talk generally when I am out in public, and I bound every day all day and so I was really hurt by this. I thought I passed better as long as I didn't talk than I apparently do. I had a lot trouble dealing with this. I never identified as a lesbian, it never worked for me. I am not expecting people to know my sexuality and quite frankly it isn't their business unless I am sleeping with you. I just wish that I passed better.

Monday, August 9, 2010

how do you know

How do you know it is time to put up the gloves and just transition? How the hell do you figure it out. Is it when it is all you can think about, or when is consumes all your thoughts. How do people know? How do people decide when it is time to just do it?

Monday, July 19, 2010

Season's best

I hit a season's best yesterday of 65.16m which is about 213ft. I am very pleased with this since I had to take a couple of weeks off of throwing and focus in the weight room to really focus on studying for the boards.

On a non-track note, I am beginning to contact therapists with a specialty in gender identity so i can start to talk with someone about what's going on my head and try to figure out what I need to do to be happy.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Choices

I am getting to a point in my life where I need to really think about whether or not I want to continue throwing or hang up my hammers and start transitioning. I am starting to realize that my involvement in track and field is really hindering my ability to function at an equal level to my peers. I am trying to really hard to not let this one bad work situation be the make it or break it of the rest of my life, but I wish I could say that this attitude, this treatment, and transphobia is what I deal with on an everyday basis whether or not I am at work or not. I want to be seen as an equal and right now because I don't fit anyones standards of appropriate gender norms it is preventing that. I love being a physical therapist. It was never what I imagined myself doing but I am so happy I am doing it. I know I am able to be a great physical therapist but I don't think I can do it or be given the opportunity to do in the current state I am in. I don't know if I am ready to leave track though, I really feel like I have begun to sing and that I could really do a lot in the next two years. I just don't know if it is worth it and honestly I don't know if I will ever know. I think part of it is me not being ready to leave throwing. Throwing is my whole life, I have sacrificed everything for throwing and now I don't really know what to do without it. I don't have any other hobbies, I throw and lift weights as my hobby, I can still do all those things it is just without the competition which is what makes it so enjoyable. I am also worried that throwing is my form of stress relief and it is a large part of what helped me stop cutting. I am afraid that if I leave track then I won't have the stress relief that I need, and I don't know what I will do without it. I have worked really hard to continue not cutting and I afraid leaving track will open that door open again. I feel ridiculous that I am in this stiuation, I pride myself on being stronger and more adjusted than this, but I really am at a loss as to what to do without track. What is making it harder, is I really define a lot of myself as a thrower. The first time I really found happiness was in the throwing circle, about the only place I still feel happiness is in the throwing circle. I don't know what is going to fill that void.
On the flip side though I wonder if I would be happier and not need throwing to define myself if I started living my life as the person I know I can be and I started looking and becoming physically and in turn more emotionally that person. I also think part of it is that I am so afraid of the unknown and disappointing people. I guess I feel like if I leave track I will really disappoint people and that I gave up on doing what I said I wanted to try and do, and I will just let people down if I leave track. I understand that my decision to live my life has nothing to do with anyone else, but I wish I could see that as reality.
I don't really know what to do, I wish there was a magic button that I could push that would tell me what to do and that would be that. I will be honest I am leaning towards leaving track. I have a lot of goals I want to achieve as a physical therapist. I want to get myself out there for the trans community to have someone to go to, I want to run camps and sports teams for the severely disabled and I want to be seen as a professional and for the talented PT I could become. Right now it is not as I am right now. My field is very homophobic and transphobic and heteronormative so I think I need to re-work my life plan.
I am going to get started with a therapist so I can get some help with this and really get the ball rolling if transitioning the way I chose to go.
I just have remember it is my choice and only mine.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Updates

Writing has been really hard recently. Not hard to find time or anything but more emotionally hard, so I have found myself avoiding it. I don't want to relive shit, I don't want to be reminded of anything because I am already having trouble dealing with what is currently going on. I am stuck in limbo right now at a job where my requests of respecting my identity is ignored and I am stuck as a female employee that at every possible chance is identified as female so no one questions it. I can' leave, but I don't have anything else to fall on and staying is really testing my strength. It has been hard for me to handle, I was really optimistic (something I am often not) that I would be treated as a professional and instead I am finding out otherwise. It makes me really nervous about the future and how I am going to be taken seriously as a practitioner and as nothing else. I love doing my job, I love helping people and helping them live with less pain, and do things again, but the field is very heteronormative, homophobic, transphobic. How does a non-gender normative, certainly not straight, trans guy succeed? The double edged sword about it all is that my patients don't seem to have any issues with me, most of them call me he too. I say it is a double edged sword because while my identity is recongized by patients it is either "corrected" by the other employees or is used later to get me in trouble because I didn't correct them. I don't know if I need to educate the owner more which is something I am more than willing to do, I just actually don't think it is going to make a difference.
I have changed myself a lot to be more professional for work. I don't talk about anything especially anything to do with me. I have a conventional hair cut now, my tattoos are hiden, I have removed most of my piercings, I dress really conservatively for a guy. All of that isn't important though because it didn't work. I wish I could understand what is so offensive about my gender presentation, my gender identity, my gender that offends people so much. I wish I could say this is the first time this has happen to me but I can't. It makes me so angry I get so angry at other trans people then to because I feel like I can't find solice with that community either. I feel like an outsider every where I am. I don't belong anywhere. I get so angry because I have been through so much and as childish as this sounds how much more do I have to deal with. Life is hard I know, and everything happens for a reason, but it is exhausting to be strong all the time, to fight and fight just for a glimpse of hope of being treated fairly. I really just don't know what to do.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

video





I threw 61.98m here, not a great throw for me but it won the meet. I will post more video soon of nationals.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Interview

I am starting the job interview process again, since I am having a lot of issues with my current job. (will explain more in a later post). I am really nervous, i am beginning to realize how much my gender identity is starting to conflict with ability to work in a safe and equal work space where I can be the good physical therapist I know I can be and am starting to develop into. I want interviewers to see me as non-gendered not because I am gender queer but because I want to be treated professionally. I want people to see me as a physical therapist not as a male or female physical therapist. My gender identity and sex and gender do not effect my abilities to treat patients, and don't make me any more or less of a physical therapist. I am sitting here, making sure I don't leave obscenely early and end up sitting in my car thinking of all the worst case scenarios that can happen. I am sitting here in a suit and a tie, and bound, and I have never felt more like a woman. I am thinking about that right now because I am trying to convince myself right now that I am a strong, handsome, talented man so I can go into this interview with confidence. But even though I identify as male, when I put a suit and tie on I feel like I am in drag because 90% of the time that is how I am perceived. I feel like I am hiding dreadfully what I am, and gender misfit. I want to be seen as male, but when I put a suit and tie on I feel like I am amplifying the fact that I am not technically. I don't want to wear anything else, I just wish I felt differently.

USATF Nationals

I got 5th!!! I was seeded 10th, and I placed. That is the highest place I have ever gotten at this meet, it was great. I didn't have my best throw, but I held my own. I made some money and got a medal YAY!!!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

away

Howdy,
Sorry for the lull in posting, I just moved, and having trouble at work. I will be going to track nationals this week too. I will try to post soon.

Corbyn

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Discussions

I was talking with my partner the other day about sports and my continuation in sports. She was asking me why I was still competing because she doesn't see me being happy doing it. And she was wondering why I would continue throwing with all it requires me to sacrifice and hating myself everyday because of it. I was little thrown off by her asking since she never really asks about sports. She always called sports my mistress, but at the same time she is my number one fan and comes to support me all the time. I was also thrown off by the questions because it is something I have thought about at length but never really had an opportunity to talk about it out loud. In way she was right I wasn't happy for a long time. I wasn't happy throwing because I wasn't me, because I wasn't able to really enjoy it. I was doing for so many reasons but I wasn't doing it for myself.
When I took time off for knee surgery in November, it was in a weird way exactly what I needed. I was able to take a step back and look at where I was and where I wanted to go. I was able to start finding a way to throw for me and stop worrying about what everyone thought, and the disappointment that would occur if I didn't throw.
Since I have to returned to throwing, I am still trying to find myself. I love throwing for 2-3 hours a day I feel like an unbeatable god that can't be touched. It isn't about being the best because I am not. It is about for those few hours I am no longer a gendered being, I am no longer being judged for appearance, I am free and I am me. I think what is keeping me in throwing right now is I want to be the trans-athlete now. I want to help others by doing it myself and showing that being a man or being a woman is what is between your legs or the hormones in your blood, or whether or not you have breasts. Being a Man or a woman is being who you are which for me is trying to become one the the best American Female hammer throwers, and that is the only way I know how to be a man.
My Partner also made a good point: "You can do it once you transition too"
It's a convincing thought

Monday, May 24, 2010

USATF Nationals

I have qualified for USATF nationals. I did it this weekend. I am .8m short of the automatic mark but I am pretty sure my mark will be good enough to go. I am thrilled since I didn't know if I would be able to go this year due to my recent knee surgery. I can't wait for more meets to come.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Silently Screaming for a Voice

More recently I have been throwing myself into the trans community at least the online version of the community. I have given information on FTM groups that are supposed to be all encompassing and showing all sides and variations of FTMs out there. Except I never really feel like I find me, or any sort of person or group anything like me. I want to meet more FTM athletes I want there to be more of a voice. I have tried to widen the voice at various "all-inclusive" FTM groups and sites being rejected, being informed that the trans-guys don't need anything to do about athletics because there isn't a big enough or significant amount of trans men that do it or participate in athletics. I find this ridiculous, it shouldn't matter if it is 1 or 1,000; I understand logistically that not often can anything be all encompassing, but to blantantly shoot down a member of the community because they are an athlete and being so misinformed on the amount of FTM athletes there are is appalling. There needs to be a larger voice. The trans community can not just throw us away because we are athletes. Too often I feel like the same trans guy is shown but never do I see the guy trying to be an athlete in whatever fashion, working out trying to accomplish a physical feat. I feel like this lack of voice makes it sound like trans men shouldn't be athletes or want to work out. I have been from other trans men in heated discussions I have had that to be an athlete especially me is trying to have the best of both worlds. Or trans men that want to be athletes are reinforcing the binary and further emphasizing that men are only men when muscular and doing manly shit like working out. These arguments are not only ridiculous but completely hateful. Men are men in their own right. There is no right or wrong way to be a man, only the man you are talking to can tell you how being a man is for them. Working out and being an athlete does not reinforce the binary it is close-minded thinking like that that reinforces the binary. Not all men athletes are "manly", or act like the "brawny" paper towel man. I coach men who read poetry and paint and actually do a lot of stereotypical unmanly things. I am athlete who loves project runway and the opera. I write poetry and love working with my hands but none of those things make me any more or less a man. I wish the voice of trans men athletes was not tainted with disdain from our own community. I hope that more people will be able to to be out as trans-men athletes in any stage of transition. We FTM athletes deserve a voice and be a part of community and see ourselves represented within our community.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Graduating

Today was part 1 of 2 of graduating. I am graduating with my Doctor of physical therapy degree. I had my hooding/pinning ceremony today and have graduate procession tomorrow. I am not going to lie, I am really really excited and extremely proud of myself. I graduated with a doctorate after 4 years of graduate and 4 years of undergraduate schooling. I did it while competing at a high level of athletics and juggling with life and drama. I have the highest degree out of my whole entire family which is pretty cool. I think what the best is and it isn't something I talk about very much, but I am now, is the fact that I did it, I earned it by myself with everyone else telling me I was going to fail. When I was ending high school I was told I wasn't going to finish college, I wasn't smart enough after going through ECT and extensive pharmacological psycho-therapy. I was asked to re-consider college once I was there. When I applied for PT school I was told I wasn't smart enough, I would never get in, graduate schools told me not to apply I wasn't smart enough I was too much of a jock, I wasn't what they were looking for. Needless to say I got into NorthEastern University and once there not many people thought it was going to work, but it did and those who supported me and helped me THANK YOU!!!
Today and tomorrow is like a big fuck you to everyone who told me what I could and couldn't do, who tried to put a limit on what I could accomplish. This is a fuck you for those who couldn't get past my learning disabilities and told me I was stupid my whole life. I did it I got my Doctorate.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

1st track meet of the season

Today is my first track meet of the season, my 1st one since my knee surgery, and I can not wait. I don't really know how my knee is going to hold up, but I don't really care right now. I can't wait to get in the circle and feel like a god again, feel invincible, powerful and just plain happy. I am in a way happy my 1st track meet is going to be in 41 degree and rainy weather since I feel like that is where I can excel. I will be throwing at MIT with my athletes and I can't wait. Competition is my love as my partner says throwing is my mistress and today is the beginning of all the fun.

Friday, April 9, 2010

lack of resources

I wish there was more help and resources available to people who aren't transitioned medically and still present as the gender opposite of their sex. I have three interviews next week for really big boy jobs. I am interviewing at three Physical therapy clinics to vie for being a full-time physical therapist. I am terrified about these interviews. I am really concerned about going on these job interviews. I don't know how to do it. I present as male, I live as male as much as I can except when I am competing, but my voice is very feminine and they have all talked to me over the phone and has assumed that I am a woman. I don't know how I go about it. I am going to show up, bound in a suit and tie looking pimping ;-) but I am so afraid of what is going to happen. Even though I am a new grad I am very qualified for these jobs and I am terrified that I am going to be judged based off of my gender presentation and assumed sexuality. I am trying not to assume that these employers are going to judge me based off of that but based off of my previous experiences I won't hold my breath. I wish there were more resources available on how you handle this kind of situation. How do handle meeting an employer who is under the impression you are female, then you show up and you are dressed like a man, trying your damndest to look like a man without raising eyebrows, bringing out peoples' insecurities and being judged because they either think I am the biggest dyke ever or some gender it. I don't know how to walk into that situation especially since the moment I talk I give myself up and interviews involve talking. I don't know if I say I am trans, I won't be medically transitioning for another couple years probably, so I know I don't really pass as I guy when I talk which is all the time i would really appreciate it if you used male pronouns. How the hell is that done without that affecting my possibility of getting a job. I am starting to wonder if I have doomed myself into a rock and a hard place by not transitioning and the effects it has on my day to day life. If anyone has any advice I would love to hear it. Thank you

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Moving from Transgender and an athlete to a trans-athlete

One of the hardest identity shifts for me was making the change to being a trans-athlete from being a transgender person and an athlete. I know they sound like the same thing but for me they were two very different things. Being a transgender person and an athlete were two seperate identities I held onto. When I was being the athlete I was no longer transgender and vice versa. It was a lot harder living within and in-between these two identities while never being able to be both only one or the other. For a long time I couldn't be both. I was so unsure of my identity as a transgender man for a long time that couldn't embrace being an trans-athlete. When I was busy being an athlete either practicing, competing and lifting I tried so hard to deny and hide my identity and all parts of it. I would try to be anything but trans, I would try to be the butchest butch dyke that ever stone butched. For a long time it was easier for me to be a stone butch dyke than it ever was being a FTM. It was in part due to the reactions of other people and in part due to my shame, disgrace and fear I felt with being trans. I still was entering new ground, I wasn't meant to be a trans athlete, it was taboo and not "allowed". Being trans especially while trying to be an athlete at the same time for a very long time wasn't about my comfort or ease with trying to find myself. It was all about how my gender identity and gender presentation affects how every one else's comfort and morals, and ability to feel like they were in a safe and equitable competing environment. It was virtually impossible to be that while being trans at the same time. When I left the sporting arena I became the "tranny" The queer to be the poster child of diversity for, the one selling out in order to make an AD look good. It took me a long time to start to converge the two identities.
I was starting to hate throwing, and wondering why I was working so hard and sacrificing so much when I couldn't be me and I was starting to not be me in any aspect of my life because of sports. I wasn't welcome in the trans community because of my personal decisions to not transition and not be considered gender queer, and because I was an athlete. I have been alienated from the athletic community because I came out, because I am so "out there" and non-gender conforming. A switch went off in my head and I decided to stop living as two completely different individuals. I began trying to compete as a trans-athlete. Now these aren't changes that anyone could see, they were internal and psychological. I started to love throwing again and I began throwing better than ever once I because a trans thrower. I was happier in my outside life too. Becoming a trans-athlete for me and allowing myself to let go of people's wants and needs and comfortability with who I am I just was. I said fuck it and competed as me. It was very important transition for me to make in order to be happy with what I am doing. It allowed me to strive for even more because for me I want to show the world that Transgender people can be athletes and damn successful. I want to be a person and break through the bullshit so that others can do it to. Transitioning into a trans-athlete helped reach that point in my life.

Relocation

I am going to be relocating to the springfield, Ma, Northhampton area, I was wondering if anyone could tell me how Trans friendly that area is. I know Noho is the lesbian capital of Ma but it doesn't mean it is necessarily trans friendly.
Thank you for anyone's help

Saturday, March 13, 2010

~The clothes don’t make the man, the man makes the clothes~

I don’t understand the big deal about working out in a tank top. Everyone can do it all the “pretty” skinny woman do it, all the “big beefy boys” do it why can’t I do this. Every now and then it is more comfortable to wear a tank top then a t-shirt, or every now and then I want to show off the body I have worked so hard to get. I do not and will not feel bad for it, guilty for it, like a freak for doing it, nor do I or will I care about whether or not my tank top is offending anyone around me. I mean I know my tattoos are really offensive black and red tribal that are of a bull and a bird and a phoenix are very offensive. I understand that I don’t look “normal” or “pretty” when I where them but really who is it bothering. I find it very amusing that something as simple as a tank top can offend so many people. I know I look like a man with tits or some scary bull dyke but lets be real here I am a man with tits. I know this it took me a long time to deal with this and accept this in my life and I have to accept this until I can have top surgery. I don’t understand why others have to accept that too. My gender presentation doesn’t affect everyone else nor does it involve anyone else, it is only about me. I am at the gym I don’t care if people see me as him or her, when I go to the gym I throw my gender out the door. I actually have always felt very androgynous when I go to the gym. I become genderless because for me the gym is my escape from everything including the pressures of having to pass as one gender or the other and all the implications of my gender presentation throughout the day. I love throwing away gender when I enter the gym it is very liberating. It is one of the few times I feel confident enough to say fuck off to all those who have issues with how I look. I am there to be an athlete and only an athlete, throw some weight around then when I walk out of the gym I am a gendered person again. It is really sad that gender is involved in everything that we do. It is something that consumes us and overwhelms us even if we don’t know it. A lot of judgement is made entirely on how some presents their gender and how that skews from what is perceived as normal or appropriate. As pre-transitioned trans man it is keeping up these gender presentations at all times that becomes increasingly exhausting. It is really frustrating to not be guy enough because of what I wear. I know that when I wear a tank top I need to be more lenient with people since it is showy but all I can this of is SO WHAT? What if I called a man that only works out his chest a woman because his pecs look like tits that wouldn’t be cool but how is that different. Myself and anyone else should not have to spend their lives dressing in a manner that would be traditionally hetero and gender normative attractive. The world has so much more to offer, the world comes in so many various forms and so doesn’t the human race and all of those forms are beautiful in their own right. I noticed that once I stopped dressing for everyone else and starting dressing for me I was happier with my appearance but I also met a lot of animosity and disgust. I am only the one that has to look at me in the mirror I am the only that has to be ok and happy with how I look; I just wish I was able to take a step back and actually practice that. I wish I was as strong as I pretend to be and I didn’t care that people care that I wear a tank top. To be free from the restraints of judgment for me is freedom in its truest form.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

On and off

Hi,
I just wanted to let people know that I am still writing and still have a lot to write about but I am in and out of internet service since I am blocked from my own blog where I am living currently. I am hoping to have more new stuff up soon
Enjoy the Olympics!!

corbyn

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Excuse me Sir, I mean Ma'am I mean...

I quite often find myself wishing that it was socially acceptable to ask people their preferred pronouns, without hearing Ms. Manners screaming in the background on the audacity to even think to ask such a vile and rude question. But seriously what is the big deal about asking people their preferred pronouns? It is not asking what is between their legs it is just asking pronouns. Now I know there are probably more people who fit ever so nice and neat in their sex, gender, gender expression and gender identity all at the same time. And I am sure those people would be insulted if asked what pronouns they used since it would be seen as "are you stupid can't you tell". But I would rather ask and get it right then assume I am looking at someone who's pronouns match their gender expression it isn't always that easy. There are people who LOOK like their gender, sex, gender expression and gender identity matched had pronouns that didn't match what you thought you perceived?
Also Queer, trans, gender queer, gender variant, gay, lesbian people are not the only people who look androgynous. There are plenty of Non-queer (excuse the umbrella term) that would not fit in what has been decided as the appropriate gender-expression for their gender and it is just as hurtful to them to perceived as the wrong pronoun. Just as it is for all of us queers. Except the big difference is the non-queer wouldn't be held responsible or judged differently for the mistake. Where as in my experience it is the queer's fault for the wrongly used pronoun and that we should deal with it and adjust not the other people

So I get back to where I got started, why can't asking a person's pronouns be as simple as asking them how there day is or saying good morning or saying my name is Corbyn and I go by he, him, his. I hope someday the fear of being insulting by asking such things will go away and more people will be more comfortable asking and answering the question what pronouns do you prefer? Since the person asking must respect you enough to care to make sure to get your pronouns right.

Monday, January 25, 2010

A must read

http://www.insidehighered.com/views/2010/01/25/griffin

This is written by Pat Griffin and Helen Carroll. These women are amazing Advocates for the Trans-Athlete and we are very lucky to have their support and activism.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

What I like to call the big itch

I can't get the thought of transitioning out of my head. Now that is not to say that I have never not thought about it till now, but now it is incessantly. Ever since I came out I thought about transitioning but my feelings towards it have greatly changed. At first I thought about transition as something that was really far away in the future, it was something I wanted eventually but not at that time, partly because of sports but partly because I was still figuring out who I was, what I wanted to become, how I saw myself and what would help achieve that vision. I then saw transition as something I wanted very much but I was not yet ready to sacrifice my participation in sports. So transition became almost a reward for my hopeful success and accomplishments in sports.
But more recently I can't stop thinking about transitioning and sports and trying to get this perfect plan on how I can have them both. Or I have been thinking about transition as the primary goal right now and sports becoming more of the distant future after transition instead of the reverse. I've been reading non-stop about other transmen and their transitions, listening to their stories on you-tube, reading up on resources, how to start the whole processes, doctors, therapists, legal requirements, surgery prices, etc... It has been addiction doing all of this, I hide when I am doing this, I pretend I am not as if I was doing something illegal making sure people don't really know how crazy I am going about this. My fiance barely knows I hide it from her because I know how much she worries about me and she knows how much reading and watching all the stuff kills me so I hide my new come obsession. I also hide it because I can pretend I am not this obsessed with transitioning and that I am still the athlete I know I am. I also hide because I am ashamed of how cowardly I am because all I did was come out and I haven't really done anything since then. I know everyone's path to their identity and through their transition is different; but I so often at times find myself wondering what good coming out did me if I have nothing to show for it. I am not trying to diminish the importance coming out and being out and open about who you are can have. But coming out has had done so much negative things for me that I can not help but feel that way.
With all I have accomplished in school and in sports, and having learned to dress more masculine and look more masculine; I still can not look into a mirror. I can't stomach what I see in the mirror. I want to resume bad habits in order to forget about transitioning for 2 more years or at least numb the pain of not, and subdue all of the self-hate and disgust that is bottled up inside of me. I've found that I have become increasingly jealous of those around me who can transition shortly after coming out, of the younger people able to transition and of those who have seemingly found solace in not transitioning. I hate myself for being jealous of them because I know it is a case of the grass is always greener on the other side.
I still love to throw, I live and breathe the hammer throw; but at the same time I can still throw after I transition. I have also come to realize that I don't want to leave track yet because of this preconceived belief that I will always regret not seeing how far I could go in athletics and that my whole career would have been a coulda, woulda, shoulda. I have accomplished a lot in sports thus far but I have always had two dreams in my life one: to figure out and become the real me, and two: to go to the Olympics. I know a lot of people dream about going to the Olympics and never go and I may be one of the people but how I will know if I don't try. But at the same time I wish I could try as a man so I could at least mention my sports accomplishments and not feel like I am lying about what I have done, or not talk about it because it would out me as trans. I already now can barely talk about it since I compete as a female, I want to compete as a man but I fear that once I do my shot at getting to the Olympics is gone.
I have also been thinking about how part of the reason I haven't transitioned is because I care way too much about what people think about me. I was at first concerned about my parents which I have now gotten over. But more so than that I have been terrified that once I choose to transition people won't see me as an athlete anymore and being an athlete is as much of my identity as being trans is. I fear people will see my transition as also my failure in sport. People may never think any of that. But in a way think all of that.
THe debate of starting to transition as soon as I return to Boston in April or waiting two more years has consumed my entire life, it is all I can think about. I am starting to wonder if anything not just a sport if anything is worth the sacrifices I have made and the potential many more to come

*sorry for the long post**
~Corbyn

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Another internship

So I am in Wisconsin for another internship. This is my last one and then it graduation and looking for a job woohoo! But another internship means yet another time when it feels like my my gender is a the butcher's block and getting spliced in every which way. I go to work bound, and wearing men's clothes that do the best to hide my hips and what is left of my chest and frankly I think I do a good job. I am seen as every pronoun hear I have been called, he, she, she-he, he-she, etc... and when I say he after the wrong pronouns they are not received and I can't tell if it is because they are focused on the patient or what. I have fears about having a conversation with my clinical instructor (CI) about my gender. The last time I had that conversation I almost failed my internship because of it. I know not everyone is the same but I am in an even smaller town and I live at the hospital I work at and so I don't want to ruin my living space as well. I wish there was a way right now that I could walk in with a neon sign across my chest that said "got dick" but alas there is not. I want to know what I am doing wrong to not pass, so that I can fix it. My inability to pass and the effect it is having on in the workplace has been making me consider starting to transition after school which is not what I want to do since I still feel like I need track to exist, like it is a huge part of my identity. I think one of the worst things about being trans is this unspoken obligation to explain who or what you are especially if you don't pass. I wish cisgendered people had to go around for a whole day and correct people all day on their pronoun and get called the wrong pronoun so that they can understand the importance and effect it can have on a person. I don't like to wear my identity on my sleeve, I like people to see me for my character and personality not my gender and sexual identity and I am making an assumption but I feel like most people want to be seen for who they are not what they identify as no matter what that it is. As a trans person it is always out there. When you compete your identity is out there to reassure people that you are competing in the right division and what not, and to reassure people you are not cheating. Your identity is out there in day to day life when you don't pass and have the anxiety of having to chose which bathroom to go into. Our identity is out there when we are at work, school, practice, or anywhere and we are called the wrong pronoun and in a situation in which we have to correct them. As a trans person my identity is always out there whether I want it out there or not. My identity is always what scares and confuses people the most. I know I have said this before but I am going to say it again; if I had any advice to give to any Trans people it is: We have to be better at what we do than anyone else, we have more stacked up against us and we have more to prove. We have to be better to get anywhere in life.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Intermittent Postings

I am currently living in the middle of nowhere Wisconsin and I have very patchy internet service. I am still going to be posting and have much to write about I just can not very frequently.

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!