I remember when I was four or five years old, people would often mistake me to be a girl, and while it was different for others to understand, I always felt like I was a girl on the inside. While growing up, I was a victim of different kinds of abuse and harassment in my school and other peer groups as well. The bullying made me question my identity and I always lived in a dilemma for a very long time.
Took Years To Accept That I Am A Woman
That phase of my life, as I recall, was the darkest phase I have ever experienced. I was in depression and constantly had suicidal thoughts. While studying in the higher secondary, I was a science student and hardly had any time for myself. I thought that maybe I should end my life. At that time, my mother gave me courage and I came out of depression. It took me so many years to come to terms with the fact that I am a woman and I should not fear anyone.
I knew I was a transwoman when I saw people celebrate their identity in pride parades. When I was 18 years old, one of my cross-dressing pictures got leaked to my brother's friend. My brother then confronted my mother, who was very emotional at that time. I could not even explain to them what I felt and all I could say was "I am not your son. I do not identify myself as a boy". It was very hard for my mother to comprehend the same because she had raised me for 18 years as her son.
At that time, I was doing engineering and my mother knew that I was doing because of family pressure. So, all she asked me was that if I was not liking it, I could just leave it. She said that one cannot choose what they are as a person, but can definitely choose their career. That was the turning point of my life because I did not have to look back anymore.
Came Out In Second Year Of My College
I took admission for my undergraduate course and came out as a transwoman in the second year. I participated in beauty pageants and won two best titles of my college. Even though I consider my privileged because my family educated me and gave me a house to live in, the situation was not very easy.
Trans-people live in very toxic environments and it is very difficult for them to be themselves. Till today, my family does not acknowledge me as Anjali, but they know that I identify myself as feminine. I guess that is what I need as person. The process of coming out to the family is a very emotional process. Even though I feel that coming out is essential, but it is not the only thing. One can come out whenever they feel comfortable, and sooner or later, one becomes a part of the world.
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