did you ever walk down the street
in the dead of night
the sidewalk lit only
by the dull, buzzing streetlamp?

you walk with purpose
and fear
and as you trip on the uneven surface
the light above you flickers
and your heart stops

the buzz stops
the light goes out
and you hurry in the dark
with that feeling
of being followed




We live in a society where being different is offensive, and people expect apologies.

I started binding 2 years ago.
I changed my name last year.
I started packing about 6 months ago.

Around my peers at school, I am comfortable being who I am. And mostly, people accept me and appreciate me too. Since coming out, I have gained more friends and felt happier than ever before.

However, I still find myself thinking, for those who knew me pre-transition process; that it is offensive and inconvenient to ask them to call me by my name.

I find myself scared to talk to my family about my true needs because their disapproval is strong and hurtful.

When I first mentioned top surgery to my parent, he called me the next day to say that I could not pursue it under his insurance and that he did not support it.

I recently have started looking into HRT (hormone replacement therapy) and plan to pursue it through planned parenthood. I want to start Low-Dose Testosterone.

I know that this will decrease my dysphoria.
I will feel at home in my body, and once I get top surgery – I know I will be comfortable.

Because I am not quite male nor am I female. I am genderqueer, however I am most comfortable presenting “male” to society.

I talked with a family member about this possibility.
She said to me: I don’t understand how taking hormones can make you feel better.
To which I replied: It will eliminate the dysphoria that I feel.
She asked me: How would you pay for it?

Well, I said, Testosterone is not so expensive and insurance actually covers a lot of the costs.

She was audibly annoyed at this point, “I can’t believe that is covered and things I need are not.”

And I said, I get that and both yours and my needs are medically necessary.

At this point in the conversation, she stated, “I am not privy to my children hearing this conversation. Can I talk to you this weekend.”

Originally I said yes, but upon further thought I decided no.

No because my identity is not something she wants her children to know.
My name is not something she wants to tell her children.

It is the most hurtful thing knowing that my family is not accepting of who I am.

Nobody should ever have to apologize for their comfort and existence.

I feel ashamed for who I am around them.

Today, knowing I will be seeing family this weekend, I shaved off all of my body hair. It was the worst feeling ever. Knowing that I have to censor my body, my life to make other people comfortable.


Why I Talk Openly about my Mental Illness

Most people say talking about my mental illness is oversharing – it puts me in a position to be judged and discriminated.

But I think it is so important. If I didn’t talk to others about my experience then someone in a similar position might still feel alone.

A mother of a struggling child may have someone to speak to.

People may see that people with illnesses can go on to leave productive lives.

If I talk about mental illness as I have seen it, people who are afraid to speak of it because of stigma may feel comfort and relief.

I speak about my experience to remind the world that  very few of us are dangerous. Very few of us will shoot up a school.

I speak about it because nobody talked to me about feeling sad or suicidal.

I tell people about my two years of hospitals because it was an important part of my life.

I speak about mental illness because language is our first step to change. I want to eliminate crazy and embrace our struggles.

I want to talk about it because it is still a huge part of my life that I will live with forever.

I talk about it because I am still recovering.

I still struggle.

I am not my illness

and I am not my circumstance. Shattered and glued. I am me.




Everytime I introduce myself,
I stumble over my name.
Not because the name I chose is wrong
But because it does not encompass all of us.
I look at this mirror and the people in the reflection are not recognizable.
I don’t know who I am.
Or who I was.
And I stumble over my name every fucking time
Because I truly do not know it
-cdk ea


We are built up from stories and cards
and just like a house of cards
we will come crashing down.
With disbelief you will see all of our faces
they will blur together
because every card in our deck
was the same

-cdk et al