Gavin, from God Herself Could Not Sink This Ship, by Leanna Keyes

GAVIN. (trans man) Look: when you’re young and trans, you harbor this secret hope that there’s a cure. That you can take something or feel something and then you won’t be trans. For me and for her, that thing was love. If we could just fall in love and be a man and a woman, we’d be cured. We never said that to each other in words. But I was her girlfriend and she was my boyfriend. I was the first person she ever came out to. We’d been out at the mall all day and I jokingly suggested that she try on some girl clothes. She did. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone look so terrified with a grin on their face. That night she broke down into tears in my arms. She told me that she was trans and there was nothing she could do to change and she understood if I never wanted to see her again. And it was just so absurd. I came out to her too. The thing is, when you’re transitioning, you’re so wrapped up in your gender that you don’t even have time to think about an orientation. So I told her, “Amber, I’m bisexual, so wherever you end up is fine with me.” And I got her hormones through hell and high water. And here’s the thing they don’t tell you about hormones. Hormones make your gender shut up long enough to let you have an orientation more complicated than “somebody love me, please!” And somehow I ended up as a gay man she ended up as a lesbian woman. We stuck it out through high school, because what else were two closeted trans people going to do? But eventually we had to admit that our orientations and genders just didn’t match up anymore. No… that’s not right. We needed to prove that our genders didn’t match up. I needed to prove it. Because who’s ever heard a gay man that’s dating a woman? A real gay man? So I broke up with her. A year later, we’re both in college and we’re thick as thieves. We told ourselves that we were just bros. Just the two musketeers. And that’s what we were… all we were! Until we weren’t.

Context: This is spoken by a young trans man named Gavin. He and Amber grew up together and both ended up coming out as trans while in a relationship with each other. They have since broken up, and Gavin now identifies as gay and Amber now identifies as a lesbian. But Gavin has some complicated feelings left for her. This monologue is him speaking to Amber’s current girlfriend, trying to explain what it was like to be trans and in love.

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