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Becoming Alex

A Trans Story

When I first met Alex, he was Allison. We went to the same school, and my only thought whenever I would see him was, “She is just like me.” Being an open lesbian in a small town has more than its trials and tribulations. The constant mockery, the bullying, the coming home in tears was nothing new to me. But at the time, I had no idea what Alex was going through. I thought I had it bad, being called “you dyke” or “faggot” as I made my way to English class. Alex was refusing to use the girl’s bathroom and holding it in all day. He was bullied for the way he looked and the way he dressed from elementary school all the way through college. He was jeeringly asked frequently whether he was a girl or a boy, and was ridiculed more when he was found to be a girl. He hated himself. Alex identifies as Trans. Though I cannot relate, being that I was born a girl; I know I am a girl, and I love being a girl. The idea of not being comfortable in your own skin is a concept I cannot even begin to comprehend.

Rewind to five-year-old Alex: He was obsessed with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles; he wanted to be one when he grew up. Somewhere in the back of his mind, while he was battling Shredder, he was also battling the fact that he was a boy, trapped in a girl’s body.

Now, let’s fast forward 12 years: 12 years of mockery, confusion, and not knowing what he was feeling. He liked girls…was he a lesbian? Was he just confused and gay? Throughout high school, he pretended to be a straight, manloving woman. This could push anyone over the edge. And then one evening, his life drastically changed. Alex was watching a show on TLC, and a trans man was talking about his transition. All of a sudden, Alex didn’t feel alone anymore. He could relate to wanting a top surgery, not shaving, and feeling like a boy. His ah-ha moment had happened. Alex is transgender. He started going to therapy, talking to his counselor, and after all of those years of struggling, bullying, name calling, a broken heart, Alex was becoming himself.

Today, Alex is working on his masters degree in social work; he wants to work with other LGBTQ youth who are in his shoes. He wants to help them discover who they are so that maybe they won’t have to go through the turmoil he went through. He has been on “T,” or testosterone, for the past seven months. He calls it his miracle drug. Alex says that he has never felt this alive, never felt more like himself.

Plus he looks really cute with his mustache.

Alicia Fennell wanted to be a writer since she was 8 years old. She has lived in 5 states in 10 years, she loves coffee, and her socks never match.