Transgender Life

I don’t want this site to be solely about being transgender. From my experiences so far, it’s not even something I could write about every week – being in the closet is far more intense and frustrating and writeable. However, there are moments when things happen, unique to trans people. I’d like to share those moments with you, and let you into the mystery.

The Sadness of Immaturity

Gods-own-country

The Sadness of Immaturity 10.09.17

Although I'm a T in the LGBTQI acronym, I was reminded yesterday at the cinema of some shared inter-acronym experiences when I watched the celebrated movie God's Own Country. Enough, in fact, to make this ostensible film review the basis of today's diary posting.

Briefly, first, a recap of the film: a guy in his early twenties spends his life in bleak Yorkshire working on his dad's farm and then getting drunk and sometimes laid. His is the kind of sex barely separable, emotionally speaking, from masturbation. This main character has settled into becoming a lost cause without really knowing or caring why. He is socially and emotionally stunted and, considering his age, prematurely embittered. Paradoxically, he is deeply immature.

Stop review. Start diary: I was not only a second-rate student in my youth but, when drunk, also quite destructive. Not in a violent sense, at least not against people. But I did use to do stupid stuff for no discernible reason. Example: in a bar once, on the way out, I took several pool balls with me from the pub's table, just to ruin everyone else's fun. When I was really young I would enter the school sports hall of my primary school and take a single object that I knew was needed for the after-school rehearsals of the school play, and hide it, just to fuck the rehearsals up. I sometimes wonder why; the detachment from education, the inability to behave appropriately. Why the weird paradox of fantastical dreams of success as I stared out of windows, and the inability to focus on anything constructive to a degree exceptional in comparison to my peers?

High school and university were similarly terrible experiences: everything related to education bored me in a way that, looking back, is difficult to comprehend. I seemed physically unable to do homework or stay focused in the classroom. I was a nightmare to teach, and probably even to sit next to, given I would invariably distract teachers, and make myself the centre of attention until I was asked to stand outside. One teacher, during my A-levels, even refused to teach me. At university, meanwhile, I simply stared out of residential windows, day-dreaming I know not what. Day-dreaming anything. I hated whatever came with obligation, to the point of mental shut down. I listened to Pink Floyd instead, and wished myself away.

I do wonder at the causes of the early malaise. Was it simply an extraordinary immaturity? Did I not want to grow up, because there was nothing to grow up into? Secret desires of gender transformation could not be shared, or realized. I could not become female. I therefore opted to become an arsehole.

These reflections re-emerge now, because I think it's important to highlight how off the rails we can go in our early life, before we start to work things out for ourselves, especially if what we are is so badly out of kilter with the thing we'd like to be, to the point of 'what's-the-point?' God's Own Country is a beautiful movie not just because it normalizes what it is to be gay, but because it reminds us of what it is to be young and a complete arsehole to everyone and everything. There can be reasons for the stroppy, ugly behaviour, and it's worth remembering how far off we are at times - including during our early decades (never mind early years)  - from being rational, mature individuals.

Conclusion: I watched the film and saw something of myself in the one who brought dismay to everyone who knew him. Like any great film, God's Own Country works specifically and generally, it's the tragedy of this young man's awfulness, but also mine and anyone's who has been or had to be around this awfulness. I really regret the way I was, not because I wasn't out as trans, but because in not being out, I ended up being just a waste of space to everyone, not least - in hindsight - to myself. 
Communities
Autumn Serenity
 

Comments

No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Guest
Friday, 25 September 2020

Captcha Image

What's On This Week

My Latest Posts

July 01, 2020

Silenced by The Scotsman

​ On 11 June, The Scotsman published a deeply hostile article against transgender rights and activism in an opinion piece about the JK Rowling furore by its deputy political editor Gina Davidson. After much distress, I wrote a counter article which The Scotsman quietly ignored, after they had offered to pass it on to their Comment Editor. I experie...
May 11, 2020

The Book of Queer Prophets, curated by Ruth Hunt

in Books

  The Book of Queer Prophets: 24 Writers on Sexuality and Religion The historically fraught relationship between Abrahamic religions and LGBT+ identities provides the backdrop to The Book of Queer Prophets , a collection of twenty-four meditations by public figures who identify as both religious and LGBT+. The book's curator, the for...
May 09, 2020

Queer/Transgender short film: Mesmeralda

Joshua Matteo's short film, Mesmeralda , merging horror with esoterica, is now out on youtube . As with his previous work Metanoia , we see youthful trans actors racing through the empty streets of a moonlit New York, haunted by symbols and stalked by a masked figure of violent intentions. Mesmeralda , as described by Matteo, is the companion ...
March 08, 2020

Sterile like the moon: the joys of transgender healthcare

Sterile like the moon: the joys of transgender healthcare Summer, 2016: Gina's Big Bang, as transitioning begins A bureaucratic question in a sun-lit room. My medical practitioner asks me if I intend to have children. The question lingers, but the self-loathing is instant. No, I won't be having children. The practitioner nods. She moves on to the n...
November 10, 2019

General Election

General Election 12 December 2019 I spent the last election in an office, alone but for the company of a colleague. We watched the BBC's coverage while I drank wine, downbeat and expecting austerity and the absence of hope to triumph. Then we saw the exit poll and hung around, disbelieving at the sight of the kindled embers and lukewarm glow of a f...
Joker
October 05, 2019

Joker

October 05, 2019

Joker

Joker The trailer did its work, flashing images of anomie and fury perfectly pitched for these unstable times of precarious working conditions, grievance and institutional indifference. For these same reasons, Joker , directed by Todd Phillips and starring Joaquin Phoenix as the protagonist, has attracted pre-release criticisms like few other recen...
September 29, 2019

Resisting Whiteness event 2019

Resisting Whiteness one-day event, Edinburgh Returning for the second consecutive year, Resisting Whiteness came yesterday to the Pleasance Theatre in Edinburgh, providing an intense and inspiring series of panels, as well as a wonderful spoken word section, and a final segment based around the documentary short Invisible by internationally-acclaim...
August 21, 2019

Hearty by Emma Frankland

Hearty by Emma Frankland Raw and dripping with punk aesthetic, this one-woman-show's one-woman emerges in ripped tights and a T-shirt that paraphrases loudly the words of anti-trans theorist Germaine Greer: Lop Your Dick Off. My first impression of Emma Frankland is edgily uncertain and in awe, her Lady-Gaga-looks combined with Heath Ledger's mesme...
August 21, 2019

Pronoun, Pass, & Amnesty International

Transgender drama: Pronoun To be clear at the outset, this was the production of a youth theatre group, not a highly resourced team of experienced, professional career actors – although some of the performances left a powerful impression, and the show as a whole achieved some remarkable moments. Pronoun , written by Evan Placey, follows the transit...