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Everyday Struggles Of A Trans Man

The situations some transgender men might find themselves in.

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Shopping for "grown up" clothes.


When it comes to shopping for clothes, nothing is more frustrating than attempting to find the perfect suit for professional and formal occasions. Tailoring is pretty much always a necessity, but most of the time it's hard to avoid standing in a fitting room feeling like you're trying on your dad's clothes. Not to mention the fact that no one ever actually told you the process for these kinds of things or what pieces were absolutely necessary for what occasion and you add quite the shopping adventure.

Having your ID checked.


If you haven't legally changed your name and/or gender marker this can be incredibly awkward. I can't tell you how many times people have looked at my ID confused. I was also recently at a bar where the bartender accused me of my ID being fake because I didn't look 21, despite me being nearly 30.

Using public restrooms.

This goes a little deeper than how well someone "passes" or who should be in which bathroom according to new "bathroom bills" that bar trans people from using the bathroom that matches their gender. There have been many times I've gone into the men's room only to find that the stalls don't have doors, or locks, or there is only one and it's occupied by someone who has been in there for 20 minutes going number 2.

Getting misgendered.


I have a friend who has a beautiful beard and still gets misgendered sometimes. My genetics give me softer features, so even though it isn't super common I still get misgendered. It's always an awkward situation having to tell someone you're actually a sir, not a ma'am. Sometimes people catch themselves misgendering and correct it, but it's still awkward for both people involved.

Filling out job applications.


Whether or not you've legally changed your name/gender marker, this can get complicated. If you have previous employers who don't know about your transition or responded negatively to your transition it can cause some struggles when you're applying for new jobs. Sometimes a potential employer will call your former employer to verify employment, and if they don't know you transitioned or their HR department only has your legal name on file it can create a problem. If you haven't legally changed your name you will also at some point likely need to out yourself to your manager, HR, and/or whoever is in charge of payroll.

Medical and insurance forms.


Depending on where you live and what doctor you go to, there is a good chance that they don't have a lot of experience with transgender people. I typically end up writing little notes on intake forms that I am a transgender man and prefer male pronouns, as well as my correct name. Insurance also tends to look at things in a way that can cause complications when you're trying to get certain benefits or medications. For example, it took months to get my Testosterone prescription approved.

Meeting people you're interested in dating or hooking up with.


This is one of those situations where you're going to be forced to have the conversation at some point, no matter where in your transition you are when you meet someone. You have to be prepared for someone to not be interested because you're trans or they might be unsure. Even though there is more visibility in the media and people talk about transgender people more freely it is still a new topic for most people. The majority of my interactions over the past two years have been surprisingly positive, so if you do face rejection don't get down on yourself!

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