Finding+their+true+colors

December Tling

Finding their true colors

Two students continue their transitioning journey

March 17, 2023

 

 

When Senior Parker Large first wanted to transition, he had some negative ideas on what it meant to transition.

“I thought it had to be a strict set of things to do in order to be valid, that I have since been able to break down and open my mind up a bit more,” Large said.

After a friend introduced him to the concept of being transgender, Large started questioning his own identity. He says he began to wonder if the path he was going down was what he really wanted,
or if he wanted to transition.

In middle school, Large recalled that he was often beat up due to his identity. And contrary to Whitaker’s experience with transitioning, Large faced sexual assault and dealt with family members who refused to accept his identity.

“It kind of hurts when they say mean things about it and I get a lot of ‘you confuse me’ comments,” Large said.

He has not started medically transitioning because of his financial situation. But he plans on star  ng testosterone in the next couple of months and then, eventually, in the next couple of years, getting the surgeries he wants.

Starting his transition has largely helped him understand who he is and has even helped him take care of himself. He says he feels more confident and secure in himself than ever.

Many people at SHS have been able to support him and his identity. Especially people from the theater department, both students and teachers, have helped him feel valid in his identity.

“People have tried their hardest to remember my pronouns, defend me when people are wondering about what my deadname is, or they’ll cover against me when people are trying to be mean,” Large said.

One of his biggest supporters Andrysiak. The couple has been together for three and a half years.

Andrysiak often tries to help show his support for his boyfriend by giving him compliments relating to masculinity since feeling masculine helps Large.

Throughout their entire relationship, Large has identified as trans and so Andrysiak has never seen his boyfriend as anything other than male.

“There will always be people out there to support who you are,” Andrysiak said.

For those who are striving to be an ally or have more trans representation, Large recommends looking into bills, looking into if they are harmful to trans people and to try and fi ght against them while providing as much support as one can.

He wants other trans youth to know that it’s okay to be themselves, but to also be wary.

“While you do have to be careful of your surrounding environment,” Large said, ”don’t let people tell you how you should or shouldn’t present yourself.”

Kayden Whitaker

Kayden+Whitaker

Senior Kayden Whitaker first started realizing that he might be different around the summer of his sixth grade year. He had felt more comfortablewearing typical boy clothing to
swim in and preferred cutting his hair short.

But during this time, Whitaker didn’t know what the term transgender meant. He only learned what it was while talking to a friend.

“(Coming out) wasn’t as dramatic as I thought it would be,” Whitaker said. ”All my parents were supportive of it.”

Whitaker’s mother, Crystal Cathey, said it was a bit of an adjustment when her son first came out, but now it feels like this is the way he was born.

“Nothing changed. He’s my kid,” Cathey said. “I loved him then, and I love him now.”

Whitaker had some doubts during his route to self-discovery. These doubts about his identity caused him to spiral into a depression.
He was at the height of puberty and had just been diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome, also known as PCOS, which affects hormones.

“I don’t know how I’d be coping with [being transgender] if I weren’t on testosterone,” Whitaker said.

He has been on testosterone for a couple of years, but originally, he was on a medication on called Depo Provera that stopped his periods. Before he started taking this medication, his appearance was very feminine.

Younger Kayden Whitaker (Contributed by Kayden Whitaker)

But after his body started to change, he began to feel more like himself. Initially he began with a very low dose. Over time, the dosage has gone up, but

he learned through his doctor that starting with a high dosage can be dangerous.

Recently though, he has been able to stop taking it because his testosterone levels are high enough.
He also had to go through counseling and hours of questioning to make sure that he was completely sure that he wanted to start testosterone a year and a half after coming out.

He says he was blessed with a community full of support for who he is. All of the friends he came out to supported him fully and so did both of his parents and step dad.

They were there for him when he first started taking testosterone and changed his name legally in 2019. While his parents have always been on board with his transition, it took some of his other family members time to understand the situation. Whitaker knew they were not transphobic, just confused, but they got used to it after some time.

But, his journey has not always been filled with positivity and support. Sometimes he’s surrounded by negativity about his identity, but he doesn’t let that get to him because he knows it’s all rooted from ignorance.

“I’ve gotten lucky so far in my transition of not having that bad of an experience with others,” Whitaker said.

 

Parker Large

Parker+Large

When Senior Parker Large first wanted to transition, he had some negative ideas on what it meant to transition.

“I thought it had to be a strict set of things to do in order to be valid, that I have since been able to break down and open my mind up a bit more,” Large said.

After a friend introduced him to the concept of being transgender, Large started questioning his own identity. He says he began to wonder if the path he was going down was what he really wanted,
or if he wanted to transition.

In middle school, Large recalled that he was often beat up due to his identity. And contrary to Whitaker’s experience with transitioning, Large faced sexual assault and dealt with family members who refused to accept his identity.

“It kind of hurts when they say mean things about it and I get a lot of ‘you confuse me’ comments,” Large said.

He has not started medically transitioning because of his financial situation. But he plans on star  ng testosterone in the next couple of months and then, eventually, in the next couple of years, getting the surgeries he wants.

Starting his transition has largely helped him understand who he is and has even helped him take care of himself. He says he feels more confident and secure in himself than ever.

Many people at SHS have been able to support him and his identity. Especially people from the theater department, both students and teachers, have helped him feel valid in his identity.

“People have tried their hardest to remember my pronouns, defend me when people are wondering about what my deadname is, or they’ll cover against me when people are trying to be mean,” Large said.

Younger Parker large (Contributed by Parker Large)

One of his biggest supporters Andrysiak. The couple has been together for three and a half years.

Andrysiak often tries to help show his support for his boyfriend by giving him compliments relating to masculinity since feeling masculine helps Large.

Throughout their entire relationship, Large has identified as trans and so Andrysiak has never seen his boyfriend as anything other than male.

“There will always be people out there to support who you are,” Andrysiak said.

For those who are striving to be an ally or have more trans representation, Large recommends looking into bills, looking into if they are harmful to trans people and to try and fi ght against them while providing as much support as one can.

He wants other trans youth to know that it’s okay to be themselves, but to also be wary.

“While you do have to be careful of your surrounding environment,” Large said, ”don’t let people tell you how you should or shouldn’t present yourself.”

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Meet The Writer:
Photo of Elisabeth Pointer
Elisabeth Pointer, Culture Reporter

My name is Elisabeth Pointer. I am a sophomore and a Culture writer for the Journal. I am a competitive gymnast at The Dance Refinery. I have been doing...

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    !!! GOOBERMar 17, 2023 at 3:31 pm

    NICE!!! If you ever want to do one on nonbinary students HMU!!!

    Reply