I identify as a non-transitioning, male to female Transgender person.
This means that I was born male and spend part of my life as a man (it’s my legal status & name, at work and in some of my social life).
However, there is a strong need in me to present, experience the world and for the world to experience me as a woman.
If I can do this frequently enough, I can control my need and not slip into poor mental wellbeing. With the help and support of my wife we have reached a balance of my need to be female vs her need for a man. I am very lucky.
Of course not every TG person can find that balance. For some the need is so overwhelming that transition (social or medical) is the only way to remain mentally well.
Personally I am reasonably ‘out’ to some family, to friends and neighbours and I am happy out in public areas such as pubs, restaurants, shops or even hill walking/mountaineering. I try to ‘pass’ as best I can but I’m aware that I am often ‘read’ as being TG. That’s fine because I am just trying to be like any other woman in those situations and dress appropriately for the type of activity I am doing and most people treat me like any other female customer or woman they meet in the street or on the hillside.
Many like me are not out although more and more are going out in public spaces as acceptance levels rise but we don’t necessarily have the same protections as transitioning/transitioned TG people, except by ‘perception’.
Recently media coverage of TG people and issues has been generally more positive. I am also involved in a few working groups on LGBT or TG issues. However, it seems that the vast majority of the articles/programmes or discussions are concerned with those undergoing transition or who have transitioned. The Equality Act is also really set up for transitioning/transitioned TG people.
This is all good but I have met many TG people over the years and as far as I can tell, those who are not planning to transition (even though we’ve all considered or fantasised about it) probably outnumber those who are transitioning/transitioned by a good 5 to 1 (or even 10 to 1).
I want to raise awareness that not all TG people need to transition, but all TG people should have equal protection and respect.
Thanks for reading,