A Change of Focus: Talking to a Female to Male Transgender Person

I recently had some interactions on Twitter with a couple, one of whom is Mason, a female to male transgender person. I am always the first person to admit that I know very little about the female to male  portion of the transgender community as most of my interactions (both virtual and real life have been with female to male transgender folk). I though it would be interesting to learn a little more about this side of things and hopefully gain more understanding. I thought you, my reader, would also be interested in this side of things. What follows is Mason’s account of his situation to date in his own words, slightly edited by me.

I am a straight male/female to male transgender person. Honestly, I just label myself as a guy. It makes me happier to call myself that so if it bothers other people then they aren’t people I want in my life. My preferred pronouns are he/him/his and my name is Mason Finley Williams which is now my legal name.

 I think the biggest challenge I face daily is first thing in the morning when I’ve just woken up and don’t have my binder on, it just messes with my head. Another thing is when I’m out in public, I’ve developed social anxiety because I’m constantly worried about whether I’m passing as a guy or not, I’ve had panic attacks in the past because of it.

 Sadly, both of these challenges have come from my being transgender.

I would say that I am completely out as a transgender person. My family and friends know, people I went to school with know as well. I came out on Facebook after I told my family and anyone that follows our (my fiance’s and my) Instagram page knows. I think the only people that don’t know are the elderly people I care for. 

To anyone that is thinking of coming out, I would say tell your closest family member first, my brother helped me work up to telling my parents. I know it can be terrifying but it can show who your true friends are.

I think my biggest fear is that I may never get any further with my transition than I am now, the doctors could say no and I’ll be stuck like this the rest of my life.

Right now my biggest hope is to start hormones/have my chest surgery in the next year. My chest is what I feel most dysphoric about so to get that sorted would be amazing. 

I would say I was doing alright with earning a living, I don’t make an amazing amount of money from my job but caring for the elderly is a very rewarding career and I earn enough to get by.

If anyone is thinking of transitioning, all I can say is its a painfully long process so you need to be prepared for tough times but it can be so rewarding in the end. You need to be sure about it.

The biggest problem I have with my transition is the waiting and the risk I’m causing to my health wearing my binder all the time. I feel the only way it could be easier is if the waiting lists just for appointments weren’t so long. I was referred to the adult clinic back in April and it’s now November and I have 71 people in front of me on the waiting list.

My family and friends have been amazing throughout my transition so far, it was my mum and my nan that took me to my appointments at the adolescent clinic. My dad is still struggling with the name but other than that he’s as supportive as he can be. My romantic relationship is amazing. I met Lauren after I came out but on the 7th of November it was our one year anniversary and we’ve been engaged for around 2 months

 I’ve never had any trouble buying clothes or when I’ve been out shopping. I just go to the guys section, find loads of cool stuff and leave again. The only issue I’ve ever really had is I can get kinda weird if I think a t-shirt is too tight and shows my body shape.

 My  personal  aspirations at just to transition, make an amazing family with my beautiful girlfriend and actually earn enough to support them. I’ve wanted a family ever since I was little, I just wanted to be the dad.

My being transgender hinders me as it can affect my confidence and if my dysphoria is bad I end up in a very dark place…luckily I’ve had my girlfriend here to keep me strong.

 If anybody out there is able and willing to help, the one thing people can do to help me right now is donate to the Go Fund Me account my fiance has set up to help me raise money for my chest surgery to be done privately or just share the link, anything of this kind of help would be immensely appreciated.

 

Daniella here again. I hope you found it interesting to read. I am struck by how supportive all Mason’s family and friends have been which is great. I am sure many of the male to female folk out there will be surprised at how easy it is for Mason to shop. So many of us feel so much fear shopping for clothes. Perhaps if we were just ‘cooler’ about it we would have less issues? Anyway I good luck to Mason with the transition it is a very brave thing to be doing and he seems to be on top of things.

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education, gender, interviews, transgender

One Comment

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  1. So much of this reminds me of my husband: the binding, the social anxiety, and the aspirations especially. I really hope Mason gets his wish granted within the year (and Cal too). I really relate to that fear of getting no further, but I have to remind myself I will find some way ahead even even the NHS decides not to be my salvation.

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