Also, a small intro: Adam. 17. HS senior. FTMgenderqueer. Pansexual. I came out over a year ago, but just retyped this so I could read it at Gendercrash.
I have read your note. Mom shared it with me this morning. She is devastated. Here are my thoughts.
The note is extremely thoughtful and well-written. It truly expresses what I believe is in your head and your heart right now. I am impressed with the level of maturity that you have demonstrated.
However, as your father, it is my responsibility to point out to you that at 16, you do not have a complete perspective on your own life let alone life in today’s world. As a young adult, you are behaving as in a somewhat predictable way believe it or not! Young adults are always passionate about their beliefs about themselves, their friends and the world around them. They are almost always completely convinced that their thoughts and feelings in the present will be permanent in their lives. It is never so. In some ways this extreme, myopic passion is what drives human existence forward through the sheer determination of youth. However, with age come some wisdom and you must accept that what I am about to tell you is my perspective on you and your life from 50 years of my own experiences in a complex world with more mistakes, wrong decisions and misjudgments about myself and others than can be counted.
My sense about you is very strong as your father. Remember, I have known you all your life and you have only known me for 16 years… I have experienced most of your life with you and that is a perspective that cannot deny. I think that you ware extremely, extremely intelligent and very, very sensitive about people and the world around you. In my experience this is a difficult mix of attributes to handle- even as an adult. In some ways, you are very much like your mother. I think you are very aware of your body image and you are more than aware that your weight and body shape as a woman, is a major challenge. Again, this is difficult even as and adult woman, let alone an adolescent woman. I think that you are also extremely sensitive about rejection and if you even dared to “like a boy”, you couldn’t face the possibility of rejection. Again, a difficult thing at any age and moreso when you are as sensitive a person as I know you are. I remember specifically as a young little girl how sensitive you were over expressing your “girlish admiration” for boys in your class or even Jeff- remember…Cause I sure do! I used to say, Oh boy…this is going to be trouble. Little did I know then how these feelings would manifest themselves…So, even at age 40, I was still wrong.
As a young woman at 16, your challenges are great. Being overweight and an overly sensitive and loving person can be overwhelming. I think that you like all people use what they have to get through life and let’s face it, all people build a protective shell around themselves and their lives to get by. So, let’s see what extreme intelligence, with extreme sensitivity coupled to a physical weight challenge could bring about in your and your protective shell.
Well, I guess I would start with the answer…You could easily figure out that it is easier (less hurtful) to be an overweight boy than a girl and that also by the way serves as a reason not to have to engage with young males on a female to male basis. What a great protective shell! It’s almost perfect. It for sure has it’s own set of challenges. Claiming yourself to be openly gay can’t be easy; but in today’s world where being gay is equivalent to being a hippie in my time…it a’int such a bad choice. At this point you think I am nuts and totally not connected to reality; but I hope you keep this letter and measure its “truth and wisdom” over time, cause that’s what matters.
Oh yeah…one other thing- there’s Data! The world today is filled with it. TV, on-line, newspapers, magazines…all filled with Data…Interestingly however, there is actually very little useful information. People get confused about the difference between data and information; but the difference is huge. As a intelligent person you will be fine here over time but you also must realize that at 16 you haven’t figured out some of the more subtle points I am making here. Basically don’t believe the data…use it to deduce information. That only comes with experience and some wisdom which I believe you will have if you keep and open mind and do not set irreversible positions for yourself in life at too young and age. With you intelligence and strong sense of conviction (youth), you must be careful on this point.
As a young adult, struggle to navigate, I think you have discovered (perhaps even without realizing it consciously) a path that appears to be clear for you. I think you have not chosen wisely. I think you have been immersed in an openly gay world with all of the exposure to theatre people- too much. That is my mistake and your mothers. Your talent is what we supported; but ultimately the culture we immersed you in has had a biasing affect on your. You can’t deny it. It’s like the young boy raised by wolves. How can he not behave in some ways like a wolf…
In short, I love you more than my own life. I do not support your thinking as a “transgender” person. I think the stuff you hear, look-up and talk with others about is poisoning your thinking and plays into your current feelings. You must realize that almost every feeling you have today will change. As impossible as that sounds it is absolutely true and I hope you trust me on that one. In some ways, like myself, you can convince yourself that you are (or aren’t) many things…This can and will be a great asset to you in your life. However, you have to learn not to commit too soon to a pace at which your head and your heart lead you my love. A cautionary tale…….