How would you describe your gender identity?

This question annoys me, I “identify” as Cree Dalene, in other words, me. A better question might be “what gender do you identify most with?” And the answer to that is simple, I identify with the women in my life much more than any men I’ve met.

How did you come to recognize that your experience of gender is different than most individuals?

As a child something just felt off. I couldn’t relate to any of the other boys. I’ve never not felt dysphoric. I just didn’t know the words to describe it until around age 17.

Were there any life events that you feel were significant in influencing your gender identity?

No. As I said, the concept of gender identity annoys me somewhat. It also gives the wrong impression to those who don’t understand Gender Dysphoria. It makes them think that I am trying to choose whether I’m a male or female. There just isn’t anything logical in that at all.

What do you remember feeling about your gender as a child?

The boys around me seemed weird and out of control as they explored the world around them. I felt the need to nurture and take care of animals, as well as people I perceived as more vulnerable than me. The need to nurture made it easier to relate to the girls in my life.

What was puberty/adolescence like?

Puberty sucks for everyone. In my case it sucked because I kept trying to go back and forth from acting manly and strong, to just being okay with myself. The struggle made it a lot harder to relate to people socially, so I didn’t.

How do you feel about your gender now?

Nothing’s really changed, I still feel distress, or depression, whenever I consider that I was born with an XY chromosome in a male body. There’s literally nothing modern medicine can do to change that.

How do those feelings affect your life?

At home, my wife and children treat me with love and respect. When I’m at work, my co-workers and team are extremely respectful, and protective. My Church treats me with love and respect, even allowing me to serve others that need my specific skills and talents. Overall, I’m in a good place now.