About Me

My name is Maalik and I’m a queer trans brother from Maryland and living in Boston. I am an eighteen year old college sophomore studying political science and economics. Music is a big part of my life and I play guitar and bass in a pseudo alt.indie band. I’m a big (American) history nerd and I’m fascinated by the military. I’m also a bit of a political geek. I’m addicted to love, the past, and Red Bull. My favorite hobby is sitting in Barnes & Noble with coffee and a good book. The rest of my life is spent reading blogs and listening to the Savage Love Podcast.

I guess I’m a bit of an anomaly among trans guys. As I kid, I never identified as a boy and I was perfectly content to play with dolls. That said, most of my friends growing up were guys and always identified as a tomboy rather than a girl. Binary gender wasn’t drilled into me so I felt somewhere in between and that worked. Being a kid was easy because a few inches of hair was pretty much the difference between boys and girls. When I was around nine I saw a documentary about intersexed people that really opened my eyes. I wasn’t old enough to fully comprehend the physical aspects of being intersex, but the idea that one person could exhibit both male and female characteristics was empowering to me. From that point on, I identified as intersexed. I didn’t tell anyone, though; by that point I understood that gender variance was looked down upon.

Puberty hit at eleven and everything changed. I hated what was happening to my body, but it never occurred to me that I could do anything to change it. I thought I would eventually come to accept my body, especially since women around me talked about how they had gone through a  “tomboy phase.” My preteen years were tolerable because I covered myself with baggy menswear and passed with ease. My parents hated it, but I secretly loved whenever someone talked about their “son.” As I got older my female body became more obvious and I lost my ability to pass; the discomfort I felt when I was addressed as “miss” told me that I didn’t want to be seen as female.

At around this time I started coming out to myself as a lesbian (I hated that word even then) and was introduced to the queer community. I identified as a butch dyke and that was okay because my masculinity was accepted. It fit for a while, but the body issues didn’t go away. Still exploring my butch identity, I joined a LiveJournal community called “birls” that was for gender non-conforming individuals who were female assigned at birth. It allowed me to connect with trans guys and see that trans people weren’t the “freaks” mainstream society made them out to be. When I first joined the community I identified as a butch dyke, then I learned about being genderqueer and that was me, and eventually I realized that even genderqueer wasn’t right– I was a trans guy.

The relationship I have with my trans status is still evolving. For a while, I felt that my female upbringing made me categorically different from cis men and expressed this by identifying not as a man  but as a transman. Then I came to realize that while my female upbringing influenced my experience as a man, it was no more connected to my manhood than my experience as a person of color or as an economically privileged person. I began to use trans as an adjective to describe the type of man I was, but still felt it necessary to mention my trans status when identifying myself as male– I was a trans man.

Right now I’m moving towards identifying simply as male. While I acknowledge my status as a transgendered person, I don’t feel that it is necessary to do so in all elements of life. Where I once thought of myself as a girl who grew into a man, I am now beginning to embrace the “born into the wrong body” narrative. I still consider myself gender-variant, but that is because of my behavior and not my body.

At the end of the day I’m just trying to be myself. I was feeling mopey one day, thinking about how if I were a cis guy I’d be a queer boy into fashion and food who could flirt up the ladies and the fellas (and everyone else). Somewhere between planning my “what if” apartment and my “what if” partner, I decided that I could better spend my energy making it happen. I am a queer boy into fashion and food. And if I spent less time focusing on what I don’t have and more time flaunting what I do, I could flirt up the ladies and the fellas (and everyone else). Factory original equipment or not, I am a real boy. Right now I’m chasing some testosterone and a surgeon so that everyone else will see I’m a boy too.


One Response to “About Me”

  1. Hey, I’m at Boston University and have been looking for more trans people to talk to. I have one more semester left until I graduate. If you’re interested in some friendly email chat or something, email me at [deleted]

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