Speaker 1: My biggest insecurity about being trans is not being seen as a “real” man.
Speaker 2: Will my voice get deep? Will I get facial hair? Will I pass? Will all these things that seemed important to me at the time ever occur?
Speaker 3: I was insecure about not being feminine enough.
Speaker 4: I had insecurities about having masculine features.
Speaker 5: My biggest insecurity is as simple and as deep as walking down the street.
Speaker 6: I transitioned while taking public transportation in Chicago every day, and I got very attuned to kind of quietly watching and listening to all the other passengers to see who was gawking, who was laughing, and who was disgusted, because disgust can often lead to violence and so you have to always be aware of what everyone is thinking about you.
Speaker 5: I think I’m constantly paranoid over my safety.
Speaker 4: I’ve been the victim of a bashing before. Someone walked up behind me and knocked me to the ground, like sucker punch you from behind. In my mind, I was thinking, “What did I do to provoke such insanity or anger in this person?”
Speaker 7: Bathroom situations are really complicated and make me feel really insecure. I don’t use public bathrooms ever, and I haven’t since I was like sixteen.
Speaker 5: Sometimes I feel like I’m not trans enough because I can pass as a masculine woman.
Speaker 7: I’ve made a choice to not continue transitioning and to exist someplace in the middle.
Speaker 6: I’d say one of my other biggest insecurities is my impact on other people. I’m so terrified that I’ve hurt my family, or I’ve hurt my friends, that I’ve ruined certain social networks or certain events that all my friends used to attend together, and my transition is what changed all of that.
Speaker 4: Dating brings up a lot of insecurities for me, and I think it’s about getting our partners to feel good about their identity.
Speaker 5: Can we talk about sex?
Speaker 9: Yeah.
Speaker 10: Okay.
Speaker 5: I noticed that whenever I was dating somebody, I couldn’t be as sexually free with them as I would have liked. I felt like I could only give, and I couldn’t receive. I missed out on a lot of beautiful moments that could have helped me grow.
Speaker 1: Unfortunately, I do think that my insecurities around my trans identity will live with me forever.
Text: How do you deal with your insecurities?
Speaker 1: I think the only way that I have learned to deal with it is just to understand that I am a man, and I accept myself as a man and that other people’s opinions of me don’t really matter.
Speaker 6: When I first came out, my biggest coping mechanism for dealing with insecurity was fake it till you make it. I would just walk out of the door with such confidence and such excitement that I put on an air of like I knew exactly what I was doing. Of course, secretly, inside, I was terrified, but as long as I could put that front up it seemed to help mitigate some of the unwanted attention coming my way.
Speaker 3: When I walk down the street, I still look over my shoulder, but it did not prevent me from continuing walking down the street.
Speaker 4: Now I’ve really grown to love myself. I love who I am. I love the fact that I have masculine qualities about me; that’s what makes me the trans person that I am.
Text: Do you have advice for dealing with insecurities?
Speaker 4: For trans people who are insecure about coming out or about their trans-identity…
Speaker 3: It’s okay to be insecure. It’s okay to be uncomfortable. It’s okay to question yourself in this process.
Speaker 6: Befriend your insecurity. Get to know your fears. Come to live with them. They become kind of like roommates. You might not love them, but they’re there and you just kind of have to come to terms with them.
Speaker 5: This time in between that trans people kind of don’t feel like they’re either here or there, enjoy it. This is the time that when we look deep into ourselves and we work solidly to get right with ourselves, we end up coming out of all of this better human beings.
Speaker 3: And I’m quoting my girlfriend. She said, “Most people cannot get out of bad relationships, they cannot change their jobs, and here we are, we’re changing everything about ourselves and saying to the world, ‘Look! This is me!'” Surround yourself with people that validate you and that support you.
Speaker 1: The most important thing to focus on is that you’re happy and healthy and that you’re happy with yourself and that you don’t pay attention to what other people think about you, because ultimately they’re not in your skin, they’re not in your body, and they’re not living your life.
Speaker 4: Make every day a day that is meaningful for you, that feels good to you. Time is moving so quickly. Don’t waste it on negative energy and other people’s opinion. Find happiness within you.