Coming Out as Non-Binary

Coming Out as Non-Binary

Up until recently, I identified strictly as a binary transgender man.

When I first started out, my knowledge was relatively limited and I thought that when you transition, you go all the way to other end of the gender binary. Whatever testosterone brought, I thought I had to just embrace it whether or not I liked them or not. I had to be subjected to whatever was expected of me in my new gender and magically rise up to the occasion.

Cut my hair short? Got it.
Do the heavy lifting? Okay!
Get used to being called a bro? I guess…

Despite being comfortable presenting as masculine, I wouldn’t go out on a limb and call myself a man. There have been incidents where, at the time, I would cringe at people calling me “sir”, “dude” and “bro” and never really know why. For a while, I thought it was just a phase of getting used to passing as male after getting misgendered left and right up until my voice dropped.

Figured it would pass eventually…except it didn’t.

If anything, it persisted for several months and I couldn’t shake off the feeling that I was inauthentic. I would involuntarily cringe at being seen as unmistakably male so often and would get very annoyed when my parents would try to push me toward hobbies and interests typically seen as masculine that I did not like. After a while, I started thinking to myself…what’s going on? Did I jump the gun on transition too soon? Was taking hormones the wrong choice? Am I not trans enough for feeling this way? The hormones were doing wonders on my mental health and I feel comfortable in my skin. Am I…dare I say…REGRETTING MY TRANSITION?! I didn’t want to think about that. I worked so hard to get to where I was and for that to be a possibility filled me with dread.

If it wasn’t the hormones or anything, what was it?

Desperate for answers, I took myself to where my journey began – online research. I scoured Google for answers, reading through articles and forums about whether or not there were people out there feeling the same way. At some point during my search, I stumbled upon a word that called out to me: non-binary. Due to my Latino culture and language, I was puzzled by the word and its definition. How could someone not fit inside the gender binary?

After reading through some more on Wikipedia, I’ve read that non-binary was an umbrella for many different types of identities that don’t fit into neat boxes. As I read on, I felt more at peace. This is who I am. And best of all, I am not alone.

I didn’t want to be either a man or a woman: I wanted to be gender neutral. Why confine myself to the gender binary where neither felt right for the sake of others? I have the freedom to choose how I present. I still acknowledge myself as a transgender man but I also identify as non-binary, genderqueer, neutrois, etc.

And the beauty of it is that non-binary can look like anything…or nothing at all.

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4 thoughts on “Coming Out as Non-Binary

  1. I came out as non-binary to a number of people in my life. For the most part it didn’t change anything, however there were some reactions I wasn’t expecting. I was expecting some people to be like, ‘okay, whatever, you are still you.’ I was expecting certain individuals to ignore my request to have gender-neutral pronouns. I even expected a few to openly embrace the idea since I’ve always complained about being thought of as my gender-at-birth. The one response I did not anticipate, from a close friend, was to be told that she was tired of people trying to get treated ‘special’ for wanting to have identifiers state ‘non-binary’ rather than male or female. I was shocked. I couldn’t even react for a week, which was okay since we live in different countries, so I was able to think about my answer without responding to her, what I consider rudeness. I eventually ended up pointing out that I was tired of CIS people getting special treatment just because they fit into that little box you mentioned. When Oregon came out with the ‘third gender’ I sent this person the article. She has yet to respond. The minute I can, meaning my state follows, I will have my identifiers changed. Those of us who are non-binary don’t want ‘special’ treatment, we want equal treatment.

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  2. This is so much me! I can totally relate to that! When I was a kid, I got often asked if I was a boy or a girl, and I was like “Meh, if this are my only options I don’t want to choose”. That’s why I needed 30 years to understand that I was non-binary, because all I saw were binary trans men, who were super masculine and had hobbies seen as male typically. But I always felt neutral about my gender. When I started my transition, I thought maybe the testosterone will make me feel more male, like if I have to grow into being a man. But now after a year on T, and some research about non-binary I feel even more genderneutral. I understood that I can live as me, as genderneutral. I’m very pleased with the changes from T. My body is just perfect now; like I always had imagined it. Also without surgery. So you see, you are not alone in this. Similiar story and we have same gender! πŸ˜€

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    1. I am exploring and wondered if you could elaborate at all about how T has helped you achieve that “just right” state that you have without surgery. This sounds great to me.

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      1. Well, there plays a lot of things in it. You should check out my own blog here to see what I mean πŸ˜‰ My therapist thinks it’s because of what I’ve been through. But I’ve always have seen my body as genderneutral and not female *shrugs*

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