People tend to be rather ignorant when it comes to the issues of trans people. For the most part this ignorance is not deliberate or born of any hatred, trans people are simply not very visible in society and there is little to no discussion of us. This needs to change. We are real, and we need the world to acknowledge our existence and accept who we are.
My name is Þór Matthías Theódórsson and I am transgender. It took me a long time to get to the point where I was able to really accept this about myself, and feel strong enough to come out and share this with the people in my life. To be honest I had reached a point in my life where I felt that something needed to change, or I wouldn’t be able to live with myself much longer.
This process has been very difficult for me, because the image most people have of transgender people didn’t fit me at all. I haven’t been insisting that I’m a boy since I was a child. I didn’t fight against wearing skirts and dresses or playing with dolls. I did pretty much what was excepted of me and I didn’t question it much. I don’t feel like a “man trapped in a woman’s body”. This body is mine and I’ve lived in it for 28 years, I don’t hate it, it just doesn’t fit me very well.
It didn’t even occurr to me that I was trans until my early twenties. Looking back I can see that most of my life I was confused, I felt left out and I didn’t understand why people did what they did. The girls didn’t make sense to me, the boys didn’t either. I tried on all sorts of identities and styles and never felt comfortable or settled. It wasn’t until I was about 21 or 22 that I started realising that something wasn’t quite right. Maybe it wasn’t that I was just a failure as a human being, but that what was excepted of me simply wasn’t right for me. At first I thought maybe I was gay, I tried that on a bit, but it didn’t fit. I am much more attracted to men than women and I realised quickly that I definitely wasn’t a lesbian. I knew I wasn’t a straight woman, I knew I belonged somewhere in the LGBT community, I just wasn’t sure where.
Eventually I came to the realisation that things didn’t feel right because the way people saw me didn’t fit with who I was on the inside. I realised that while I was in fact attracted to men, I didn’t want to be with them as a woman, I wanted to be with them as a man. For the first time in my life something made sense.
I’d heard of trans women before. Men who wanted to be women, who had known since they were children, who were “trapped in the wrong body”, who had hormone therapy and surgery to be as feminine as possible, who wanted to be with men. But the trans experience is so much more varied than that. For a long time I hadn’t even realised that it could work in the other direction, that sometimes trans people were men who had been born female.
I tried to come out of the closet several years ago. I told my family, I bought some men’s clothing, I saw a psychiatrist. But I realised soon that I wasn’t ready, I didn’t understand myself and what I was doing well enough, and there wasn’t much of a support network to rely on. I crawled back into the closet and spent years trying to convince the world and myself that I was in fact a woman. I just skipped the whole dating game, it was too painful to navigate.
About a year ago I started allowing myself to look at this again. I started reading and getting in touch with people online. Finally I realised that there is no one way to be trans. I don’t have to be über-man. I don’t have to change my personality to fit into some kind of transgender mold. I could be trans…and still be me.
So here I am. My name is Þór Matthías Theódórsson and I am transgender. I am not very masculine, I never have been, I am in fact quite feminine. I still like nail polish and fancy earrings. I still have a weakness for bags. I still think high heals make my legs look hot. But I am not a woman. I don’t want to have breasts, I don’t want to have a woman’s voice, I don’t want to live my life as something I am not.
I am going to go through the process of transition, get hormore replacement therapy and the surgeries I feel I need to to be comfortable in my body. But I will still be the same person, with the same interests. I will still be silly, a bit girly, wear make up sometimes. But I will be a man.
Think about this for a second. A man who was born male, who is attracted to other men, who wears make up sometimes, who is very feminine, is still a man if he says he is. A woman can be very “butch”, never wear dresses or shave her legs or wear make up, but she is still a woman. I am a man, and just like every other man, I can be exactly the kind of man I want to be.