Wednesday, December 21, 2011

When I Knew I Was Different

These stories begin, as they almost always do, at a very early age.  I think I was probably six or seven years old playing some sort of typical boy game with a friend of the family's son who was a year or two younger than me.  I don't much remember the specifics, other than that it was summer and we were shirtless, but I remember getting hard.  At least I think I remember that.

Around that same time, (at the peak of my Ninja Turtles fandom) I started getting into bondage, though I hardly knew it.  Those shows inevitably involve the heroes rescuing some damsel in distress, usually bound to a chair and dangling over a pit of hellfire.  My fantasies then involved imagining myself being tied up, rolling around in bed with my arms pinned to my sides struggling to get free.

As if that wasn't enough for my naive young brain to be blissfully unaware of, it was at that same time that my lack of manliness started to poke through.  That defining memory would have to be when I was about eight or nine.  I was told that I could get a poster from the bin at Wal-Mart.  Eventually I narrowed things down to two, one a picture of all (then) twenty-eight NFL teams and another of a cat doing something ridiculous with a pink background.  My mom told me I could decide between them on our way to the register.  I chose the kitty.  We got the football poster.

So it was all there, long before I even knew what sex was, or anything about its infinite intricacies.  I had as much choice in the matter as I did to grow up white.  The realization was somewhat more rocky since I hit puberty probably later than virtually everyone in my middle school.  There was an incident in 6th grade when another student asked me if I liked girls.  The question baffled me.  I can probably blame growing up in an overprotective household where my parents wanted to trap me in a sort of Neverland for that.  Defiant statements from my mother that I would "not have a girlfriend until I was in my 20s" come to mind.  (Like I needed the help.)

I probably shouldn't write this next part, lest it provide fodder for every bigoted, dogmatic, helicopter parent out there.  My introduction to realizing my own homosexuality came on the internet, specifically in chatrooms.  I frequented AIM chats for no other reason than the joys of talking to random people.  One evening I was asked if I wanted some hard fireman cock (or something like that).  I was probably fifteen or sixteen at the time, and while that frightened me at first, it eventually didn't sound like too terrible a proposition.

I talked to a variety of men online about just about everything, though the topics seemed to center mainly on dick sucking and bondage.  Which leads me to the second of the three parts of myself.  (I feel like I'm braiding with words here.)  One fateful day (about the same time I started experimenting on myself with rope and clothespins), I googled "girls being tied up."  I found bondage.

The early nights were tough as I sifted through image after image, entranced, and yet suffering through immensely painful headaches brought on by the guilt that only a religious upbringing can provide.  Luckily (as Sean Connery would say), the penis mightier and my libido always prevailed.  It would take several more years before I found the comfort of ditching the religion entirely and started living my life as my own.

I cannot impress enough how shrouded people like my partner and myself have to be in our lives.  Even now I'm not out to my parents (though my mother isn't stupid) or any other relatives save for a bisexual cousin whose acquisition of a girlfriend did a lot to take the attention off my weirdness.  (Thanks cuz!)  Most of my friends know that I am what I am, though it's not something I'm terribly overt about in public, especially the third part of myself.  A lot of people don't have a good grasp of how all-encompassing transgenderism is and I'd rather not have to explain that even though I say I'm trans, I do not, in fact, have a vagina.

There was always a struggle between my desire to embrace my feminine side, and my desire to avoid being something I shouldn't be.  The predilection for female clothing (the androgynous type) has not been a recent phenomenon, though the purchase of said clothing has.  There is a lot in our society that pushes people into preconceived molds of what other people think they should be, whether it's a Maybeline commercial telling girls they have to be pretty, or a Miller Lite commercial telling the guys to "Man Up."  (Seriously, fuck you guys.  I've put 47 clothespins on my cock and balls at a time, I am tougher than the dinks that drink your shitty beer.)

It is perhaps not the best to still be figuring out what I am exactly at this age, but it is at least interesting.  And I think that will evolve with time anyways.  As we continue to break down gender stereotypes, the things that make me lean towards transgendered, or gender-whatever will start to fade because they'll no longer be associated specifically with men or women.  I won't be a he, or a she, or a ze, or a te (god even as LGBT, that shit annoys me), I'll just be a person, with interests and sensibilities that other people share and it won't matter what's below the belt.

I've come a long way from the kid that used to lose sleep at night because he looked at porn and was afraid to change in the locker rooms in high school.  Now probably close to a thousand people have seen my dick and I don't just look at porn, I converse with its creators, stars, and distributors.  Sex has gone from being taboo to one of the primary interests in my life, one I can discuss with virtually anyone.  I'm not the dumb kid that thought sex involved penis in butt (hey what do you know, some does!), or the scared kid weirded out by the sexual company of men.  (My first homosexual experience will probably be a topic in itself.)

The sooner we can get some of these things into the mainstream, the better.  The sooner more folks can become comfortable being around us the better.  My hope is that every day fewer and fewer people have to hide what they are because of the contributions of my partner and I, and the millions others like us.

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