Archive for the life Category

Hiatus

Posted in life, reference on 12.12.10 by Maalik

As you can probably tell, this blog is on hiatus and will continue to be for the forseeable future. This is partially because I’ve been feeling uncreative/not in the mood to write recently, and partially as a consequence of my evolving identity. If you’re still interested in hearing from me, I’m pretty active on tumblr.

Until then…

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Reflection?

Posted in about me, life, transition, Uncategorized on 05.14.10 by Maalik

Today was supposed to be my T-day. I had an appointment for the 13th, but had to reschedule because of class. I’m obviously pretty bummed about it, but I’ve come so far since this time last year I can’t be upset. My new T-day is in less than a month and by the time it gets here I should have my petition for name change filed. When I see my doctor for T, I’ll also have her fill out a form to get that damned F on my ID changed to an M. With any luck, I’ll have a swanky “Maalik/M” ID by the end of August. And I’ll be a Massachusetts resident.

I’ve decided to start on a low dose of T for my voice. I come from a family of baritones and I think I’ve got a good shot at getting there if I go through my second puberty like most boys. That’s my theory, anyway. God knows if it will work. It will also give my family and acquaintances some time to adjust.

On Coming Out

Posted in coming out, life, Uncategorized on 05.14.10 by Maalik

I have a confession to make– I never really came out.

I wrote my three closest, queerest friends a letter saying that I wanted to be called “Maalik” and was going to use “he” from then on, but at that point it was pretty much assumed that I was trans. And I never bothered to tell my other friends, I let them read Facebook and figure it out.

It worked the same way with my family. I never had the ‘sit down, I have to tell you something’ discussion. They just assumed and I eventually clarified that I am, indeed, a boy. I’m on a LGBT speaker’s bureau at my school, so anyone who sees a panel knows I’m trans and in class I just accept whatever label people put on me; by the end of the semester, they seem to figure it out, too. Now, however, I am confronted with my first real need to come out. And it’s terrifying.

I am living in apartment-style housing for the summer and I’ve got four roommates. They’re all really cool women, but they think I am also a woman. Between living with them and starting T in the next month (woohoo!), I think I need to tell them the truth. I have no idea how to go about it, though– I’ve never done this before! Should I sit them all down? Say it casually in passing? Come out to them one at a time? Ah…

I feel closest to one of my roommates and I think she’s more likely to be an ally, so I’m thinking about coming out to her first and working my way around. But even with this plan, I don’t know what I should say or how I should say it. I’ll keep you updated, hopefully I do it without going crazy!

Quick Update

Posted in life, quick hit on 02.16.10 by Maalik

I’m still around. I’ve been pretty busy with school lately, but I have a few drafts that I’m going to try and finish by the end of the week. I’ll be more prolific once I get through these next few weeks, promise.

On the more personal side of things, I’ve got an appointment next week to see if I can skip therapy and go on hormones. If everything goes well I should be starting T in the beginning of March.

Eliminating my Past

Posted in history, life, transition on 12.15.09 by Maalik

Recently, I’ve begun to identify pretty solidly as male; for me, this identification involves moving away from qualifying my maleness with “trans.” While I feel it is important, especially as a person of color, to speak out about being transgendered, at times I want to be just another guy. Right now it isn’t within my means to live stealth, but I no longer want this fact to stop me from living as a man. Even though I recognize that I won’t always pass, I still introduce myself as “Maalik,” use male pronouns, and behave as I would if I passed all of the time.

As part of my transition from “trans man” to “man,” I went through my Facebook page and purged it of all references to my legal name, sex, etc. I expected the process to be uplifting– my profile would finally reflect exactly who I saw myself to be– but instead I found it somewhat depressing. My past is inextricably linked to the years of it I lived as a girl and to delete references to my “girlhood” was to delete that past.

While this only involved a Facebook profile, it says a lot about my life as a whole. If I want to live as a male without the specter of my past as a girl, I have to eliminate that past all together– awards won, photos taken, etc. And if I want to be able to have and share that past, I’ll always worry about whether I’m seen as a man or a transman or a girl.

I know that living completely stealth and completely out aren’t the only options; eventually I’ll find a balance that works for me. But finding that balance is something I don’t necessarily want to do; certainly, it’s something I wish I didn’t have to do.

10 Things I’m Looking Forward to As I Transition

Posted in about me, life, transition on 12.12.09 by Maalik

I haven’t posted anything in over a month. I have a couple of drafts I would like to post, but I haven’t finished them and I don’t think I will anytime soon because it is finals week. I’ve had a pretty rough week, trans-wise, so I made a list of things I’m looking forward to as I transition. Feel free to add your own.

1. Showing a license with the correct name on it.
2. Not having to choose between not talking or looking wierd while I talk because I’m dropping my voice.
3. Putting on just one shirt when I leave my room.
4. Getting dressed with the blinds open.
5. Facial hair.
6. Going to/from the shower without a shirt on.
7. Meeting someone new and not having to amp up the masculinity so that ze uses masculine pronouns.
8. Writing “Maalik [last name]” on school assignments.
9. Going out without having people say “Thank you sir; I mean ma’am? I’m sorry! I’m so sorry!”
10. Building muscle.

Staying Alive

Posted in about me, life, quick hit, Uncategorized on 11.04.09 by Maalik

My three years in high school were the worst in my life. I was battling dysthymia, coming to terms with being gay (and later trans), and dealing with all of the typical troubles of being a high school kid. My friends were my lifeline during that time. One guy, in particular, would stay up and talk with me whenever I needed him. Sometimes my friends weren’t enough, though. At least once a month I went through a major depressive episode and turned to alcohol to cope; I would sit in my closet and drink until I didn’t care about the pain I was in.

I’ve always been good at stopping a habit before it becomes a problem. In eleventh grade, I realized that monthly drinking as a way to deal would only serve to create more problems. When I moved to college, I stopped drinking and moved towards smoking and sleeping as a coping strategy. It wasn’t as dangerous as drinking, but it wasn’t the smartest way of coping. Fortunately, life got better in college and I rarely smoked more than a pack a month.

When I transferred to college, I resolved to leave my vices behind. I quit smoking in August and don’t keep alcohol or cigarettes in my room (with the exception of my unfinished pack). The problem is that I still have bouts of double depression and now I don’t have any sure-fire coping mechanisms. I blast music, I watch tv, I sleep, I read… but nothing works for long and sometimes nothing works at all.

So I’m turning it over to you. Are there any activities that keep you sane? People to talk to? Words of encouragement? What do you do to stay alive when the world is telling you to not bother?