Being transgender defines it’s own loneliness.
The pain of being transgender is almost indescribable.
The loneliness, the sadness, the guilt, the shame, the anger, the fear of discovery, the absolute human anguish, all trapped inside your head… and no one in your life has a clue.
It gets compounded by the lack of sympathy, compassion, understanding and comfort from others, the fear of anyone knowing, the fear of being seen as a freak, the fear of rejection.
What is wrong with you? Where did this come from? Why now?
Suddenly, late in your life this alien female identity suddenly explodes into your life. It creates a deep emotional pain that is inexplicable to you and to others, that you now live with every day, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, minute by painful minute.
Your wall of denial has come crashing down.
You started that wall when you were very young, around 5 years old. You had no clue you even started it.
You felt the natural you and you tried to simply live it but you were told it was wrong and you were regularly corrected. You were told by everyone what was a boy and what was a girl. Everyone and everything around you told you what you should be.
You learned that your feelings and sense of self were wrong. You learned to hide those feelings, those thoughts. They were bad. As a child what did you know? Mom, Dad, the older kids, they all knew better. You learned from them.
You just knew that you didn’t want to be bad. You didn’t want to be rejected by those you loved or the friends you had.
You had no way to explain what you felt. There were no words you learned in school or at home to help you with your internal puzzle. You were a boy, no emotions allowed. Just suck it up and move on.
You shoved those feelings into a corner somewhere in your head and you began to build your wall of denial.
Everyone around you drove you to improve your skill in hiding. They were not allowed to know your secret because you learned quickly that they hated what you were hiding.
They were the “enemy”. They proved it time and time again. They were your parents, friends, family, spouses and children. They were the media, religious and political groups and society around you, on a global scale. You had a “defect” that no one wanted to understand and everyone seemed to hate.
You let no one in.
You were perpetually behind enemy lines. You learned to cover your emotional tracks. No one saw you or knew you were there. They saw what you wanted them to see, knowing at all times they would never accept you.
You hid to prevent being an outcast. You wanted to just be accepted so you became what they wanted.
Over time you became so skilled that hiding became a second nature, an instinctive response that even you forgot that you were hiding anything.
You hid from yourself.
As you got older, you rationalized your feelings. There was just no way to explain it to yourself much less anyone else.
You built the wall of denial even thicker, so thick that you rarely felt or heard the “voice” behind the wall.
When that voice did escape periodically, you found safe ways to take care of your inner self but even then, you were mean and cruel to yourself. You rejected what you saw. You saw your own disgust reflected in the mirror every time you looked.
You hated being you.
Time passes. Your life follows the path that feels right for you: career, marriage, house, children. They all give you joy and you accept the happiness they all bring.
On and on this goes on for years. On and on you thicken that wall that excludes a part of your heart, a part of your soul.
But slowly as you get older, the wall starts to erode. You don’t notice it at first but you sense a growing weakness. You keep pushing back against the wall but you start to lose the strength to fight the denial that you thought you could carry to the grave. But you can’t weaken because you will lose everyone and everything in your life.
But you just can’t do it anymore. It is exhausting, draining, soul crushing.
The strain and the pain become enormous. You try to find a solution, a way to escape the growing pain that comes with the deep emotional fatigue.
You are constantly attacking yourself. You know exactly where your weaknesses are. You are mean and brutal to yourself.
As you heroically try to keep up the wall in your emotional realities, you begin to realize that you can’t. You see your failure coming… and you are all alone in your crowded life.
No one has your back.
You finally come to the point of a life altering moment offering two choices.
But you reject both.
You desperately struggle and push back again, again and again. You refuse to accept. You feel the deep, deep agony driving you forward to the choice:
Either open up you heart and soul to the world and accepted what will come or die.
I would rather open up my heart and soul.
The world will have to accept.
Emma Elizabeth Halliday