Hey, it’s Kai. I know you guys have probably been sitting on the edge of your seats waiting for another one of my amazing, comedic, grand blog posts. Here it is, but it isn’t a funny one this time. I’m going to talk about some pretty serious stuff in this post. This is one I was looking forward to writing though, and you will see why at the end. Happy Pride!
So, correct me if I’m wrong, but there was always some sort of pride related something during the month of June in Colorado. Whether it was learning about different sexualities at school, or seeing flags on the streets, you knew people were cool with it. Last year, we didn’t have school in person during June, so, obviously, I didn’t expect them to do anything. This year, I had absolutely no clue what would happen.
A lot of kids and teachers at my school are not exactly in favor of the LGBTQ community. There’s a lot of homophobia coming from lots of the kids, and sometimes even the teachers. I have heard, and been told some pretty bad stuff. Even so, I expected people to at least mention the fact that it was pride month. I thought maybe they would use it as a learning opportunity or something.
A week of June went by and nothing happened, so a few of my friends and I made little pride flags and decided to tape them around the school. We kept seeing videos and pictures of people doing the same thing at their own schools, and because it was pride month, we figured people would be okay with it.
One second after we had finished taping up the first one, a group of teachers ran over to us yelling and screaming, telling us to take them down. They told us we would get in huge trouble for doing stuff like that, but we didn’t want to give up there. Instead of putting flags around the school, we went around to some of the classes and asked if any of the students wanted to tape one onto their shirts. Most of the seventh grade loved the idea, took pride flags, and were super awesome about it. Most of the eighth grade was not.
We had people taking handfuls of mini flags and throwing them into the trash. We had people ripping flags off of other people’s shirts. We had people ripping flags in half and throwing each piece into the water fountain. No teachers stepped in to tell them it wasn’t okay. In fact, most of the teachers also refused to wear pride flags. They said, “We aren’t allowed to share our political beliefs with the students”
The first and only school provided mention of anything LGBTQ related was yesterday. The whole grade went on a hiking field trip to the Carmel mountains. Nearby, there is this memorial for people who died in the 2010 Mt. Carmel forest fire. Our guide told us that on the bus of police and firefighters going to save people from the fire, there were three women. Each of them had families of their own, and they were told to get off the bus so they wouldn’t die and leave their family without a mother.
He said that two out of the three women got off the bus and were able to get home safely, while the third woman insisted on staying. “She had a wife and kids at home,” the guide told us. “I wanted to give her an honorable mention because of pride month and everything.” That was it. That’s the only thing we’ve heard in school about the LGBTQ community this pride month.
Anyway, aside from that crazy drama, I’ve been having a pretty good couple months. I made some good friends. Those friends and I have taken the train to Tel Aviv a couple times on our own. We hang out a lot. The first time in Tel Aviv was incredibly fun until I fell down on an escalator. The metal teeth things went into my knee, and I had to go to the hospital at midnight. It healed fine. I’m completely okay now.
I also signed up for this overnight seminar for trans youth in Israel through IGY. I had to get a corona test in order to attend, but the results kept not coming in and my mom and I spent the entire day at a mall waiting for the results. Finally, at about 5pm, we decided to just leave and go home. It sucked, but since the results didn’t come in, I wasn’t allowed to go to the seminar. But the minute we walked through the door, after driving all the way home, the results came, and we turned around and went back. I arrived at the seminar seven hours late, but in the end, I was so glad I went. There were more than 75 trans kids from all over Israel together at the seminar, and it was the first time I ever felt like I didn’t have to explain myself to others.
Here’s the main point of this blog post. I hear (from my mom) that a lot of you are confused about my pronouns. If you weren’t, you probably are now, so you’re welcome. The truth is that I am actually not non-binary. Truthfully, I’ve always had a problem with inconveniencing people. I don’t like it when someone has to go out of their way to do something for me. I’ve known I was transgender for a while, but I thought coming out as non-binary would be easier for others. Then they wouldn’t have to deal with hormones and paperwork and maybe even surgery.
So instead, I came out as somebody who just didn’t want to be put in a box, and someone who wasn’t really a girl or a boy, but that wasn’t true. It hurt because I knew everyone was trying really hard to respect my new pronouns and name, while at the same time, they/them was still not correct. It sucks because I’m always scared people won’t take me seriously for coming out again so soon after coming out the first time, but I was wrong the first time. Non-binary is a super valid identity, just not for me.
My pronouns are he/him. I identify as FTM (female to male) transgender.
If anybody has any questions about me or the different topics in the blog post, ask them. I think people should be more educated than ignorant, and if you’re unclear about something, feel free to ask me about it.