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What Does It Mean To Be Transgender? ft. MrLewzer & Fox Fisher | Voice Box | Childline

What Does It Mean To Be Transgender? ft. MrLewzer & Fox Fisher | Voice Box | Childline

Amy: Hi, I’m Amy
Fox: Hi I’m Fox Lewis: I’m Lewis
Amy: And today we are talking about what it means to be transgender Amy: What does it mean when someone says they’re transgender?
Fox: So somebody that says that they’re transgender, they don’t feel connected to the gender that
they were asigned at birth Lewis: It could be that somebody identifies
as the opposite or it could be that somebody feels that they don’t fit either of the boxes
Amy: So being transgender can take many forms. Some people want to change their body, but
a lot of people don’t, they just want to be treated in a different way
Lewis: I always say there’s two sides to transitioning. There’s the social aspect and then there’s
the physical body aspect Fox: Some people might want to go down the
full route for a medical transition, you know hormones and surgery, that’s what that would
mean, but other people feel that they just want to be acknowledged as maybe non-binary
and they don’t want to do any physical changes Lewis: It is a misconception to say that hormones
and surgery make you a man or make you a woman Fox: Yeah, you should be acknowledged as the
gender that you are regardless of how far you are on with your transition
Amy: I know it can be quite daunting, and there’s all this confusing terminology that
someone who’s just kind of exploring might not understand, so can we talk through a little
bit of that? Fox:Trans* with the asterisk or the star is
an umbrella term for all things trans Lewis: Non-binary or genderqueer
Fox: A trans woman, a trans guy. If you identify as something other than the gender that you
were assigned at birth, then you are in the trans* spectrum.
Amy: And you mentioned two more words there, so that’s non-binary and genderqueer
Lewis: Generally it means that you don’t fit the boxes of male or female, that you are
perhaps somewhere in between or you don’t feel like either, and it’s really down to
the person. If you imagine male at one side and female at the other, where they are on
that spectrum is down to the individual. I identify just as male, right at the very end
this side, and I think you’re sort of a bit more non-binary aren’t you? You’re a bit more
along the spectrum Fox: That’s right, I identify as non-binary
Amy: So there’s cisgender, which means they’re someone who’s kind of happy with the gender
they’re assigned at birth, then there’s passing, what does passing mean?
Fox: If someone’s passing, it means that they are not being recognised as being trans, and
that’s problematic language in some ways, because the ultimate goal might be for nobody
to know their trans history. Not everyone has that privilege
Lewis: You might think ooh that person’s not passing, how do you even know that they’re
trans, do you know what I mean? Amy: So there’s a lot of acronyms that you
use as well, and we’re thinking particularly of MTF and FTM which mean male to female,
female to male Fox: I no longer use the term female to male
because for me it implies that I was female, and I think a lot of people find that problematic
Lewis: I actually do use the term FTM just kind of for simplicity, just because a lot
of people out there know what it means but I do completely understand where you’re coming
from. I think the only reason I’m okay with using it is just because it’s like an acronym
FTM. A lot of people say to me oh so you used to be a woman then, and I’m like no, I’ve
always been a guy but just my body didn’t match up to that
Amy: Using this language in these communities is all about just being considerate of what
other people feel Fox: And language is changing so quickly.
It’s evolving and so perhaps 4 or 5 years ago we were using the word transexual, and
we wouldn’t really use that anymore. Your own personal identification might not be what
someone else’s is, so just choose wording that feels comfortable to you
Amy: And that’s the most important thing again, just being comfortable. I think it’s quite
normal as well for people to question their gender as they’re growing up, and that might
settle down, and that’s completely okay, or you might kind of feel actually no I do want
to make some changes. So for someone in that position, what do you think kind of the first
things you should do? Fox: Clothing is something that they can do
quite easily. You can put something on and really feel different about yourself
Lewis: Guys and girls clothing. It’s not really a thing, it’s something we’ve been told that
girls should dress this way and guys should dress this way. With girls when they dress
in boys clothes they’re just labelled as a tomboy, not a big deal, but if a little boy
wants to wear a dress there’s a lot of stigma attached to that and it doesn’t necessarily
mean that they’re going to be transgender, it doesn’t mean that they’re going to be gay
Fox: Another thing is the name change as well. Even if you don’t change your name legally
yet, you can decide upon a new name for yourself and maybe say I just want to try out this
name for now, and maybe just this week, let’s see how it goes. The same with the pronouns
as well, maybe consider calling me he or they obviously if you’re a non-binary person
Amy: It can be quite difficult I think for young people to say to their parents you know
what you’ve been referring to me as my entire life that’s not what I feel is right
Fox: The first thing somebody needs to recognise is that you’re not doing anything wrong and
it’s okay to tell someone that actually that name doesn’t really suit me or I’m having
problems when I look in the mirror and I don’t really see a reflection of myself. Perhaps
a letter would be helpful, to try and write something down
Lewis: Something that really helped me was showing my mum videos of people that have
transitioned, because I think a lot of parents are scared. I wanted to show my mum positive
stories of people that have transitioned. You know, they look good, they are happy and
healthy and have relationships. You have to be over 16 to be on hormones and make permanent
changes. You don’t have to jump straight into surgeries and things, there’s no harm in trying
out and letting that kid explore their gender. Nothing’s permanent, there’s no harm in it
and it just helps them discover who they are Amy: It’s okay, whatever transitioning or
being transgender means to you as long as you are happy and comfortable
Fox: That’s the most important thing Lewis: Definitely, yeah. And I guess people
in your life just have to respect that even if people don’t quite understand it to begin
with Amy: It can be very difficult to take that
first step and I just want to say that you know ChildLine counsellors are always there
Fox: I felt like I couldn’t talk about it for such a long time and when I finally did
I did find a lot of shame about it and it took a lot to get those words out. Throughout
my teenage years I was very, I had no respect for myself, for my body or anything like that
and I’d hate for any other young person to go through that you know it doesn’t have to
be like that and not be waiting like oh when I’ve got this then I’m going to be happy.
Don’t wait to be happy, you can kind of take small steps to feel better about yourself
today Amy: Now we want to hear from you guys. How
do you think we can make sure that society is better educated about trans issues? Make sure you let us know in the comments below Thank
you so much for coming in and talking to us, and we’ll see you next week.
All: Bye!

15 comments on “What Does It Mean To Be Transgender? ft. MrLewzer & Fox Fisher | Voice Box | Childline

  1. I am a trans guy and this stuff should be taught in schools! The Internet can only be reached if you search for trans things in particular, whereas school, everyone learns

  2. I'm a trans guy myself and I believe that one way that society could be better educated; is to teach/have lessons about transgender, non-binary, genderqueer people and the whole of the LGBT community in general, within the education system. As then, if someone is questioning their gender (or even sexuality) whilst at school, they can learn about various 'terms' and what that entails, and it may then make it easier for them to identify and to also provide them with support.

  3. Love this video! It's a really good simple explanation of what trans can mean. As a non-binary/genderqueer person it felt really good to have my identity acknowledged, especially as a lot of the tim, people think of "trans" as only including FTMs and MTFs. Also Mr Lewzer is awesome 😀

  4. Hey, another trans guy here. Whilst I think it's important to acknowledge how far we've come, with transgender figures such as Caitlyn Jenner and non-binary individuals like Ruby Rose coming to the forefront, we still lack a basic foundation of understanding which could easily be established in schools and as part as PSHE or Life Skills lessons. Tools like YouTube and the Internet have helped visibility a great deal but there's still more work to be done! Thanks again for the informative video ChildLine

  5. Nooooo!! The asterisk is bad. It implies that anything other than "trans man" and "trans woman" are not trans. Just use…… Trans. No asterisk.

  6. I always wanted to be transgender (I am teen for now, but younger), but none of my people understand it. They think it's stupid, it's crazy. But I don't know why everyone else can make them who they want? Are they gay? Are they lesbians? I am none of them.

  7. There defiantly needs to be stuff on tg stuff as some ppl use offensive terms because of them being used so much and not knowing they are offensive and also you dont need a sex change to have the right pronouns used and have the name you want used

  8. Hi everyone.

    The ChildLine helpline is there to support anyone under the age of 19 who needs support. As this channel is not private of confidential we can't provide direct help here but you can talk confidentially to a ChildLine counsellor on our free 24-hr helpline 0800 1111 or visit to talk to us online.

    Most calls to ChildLine are confidential, but if you need to know more about what we can't keep confidential, have a look here.

    Take care,

    ChildLine Youtube team.

  9. I'm still confused I don't know what I am and I can't explain this to my parents they said I should see a doctor about it my head hurts the more i think about it

  10. As a trans individual I don't think there's much we can do for the people who are in their twenties and up who already have strong opinions on what is male or female. I don't really think that the new generations with those parents would be okay with kids learning trans issues in school.

    For now all we can really do is wait for the older generation to "die out" (for lack of better terms) and educate the younger people as best we can. It's incredibly difficult to even begin at this point in time. Many people are not open minded and even lesbians, bis, gays, ect don't believe that trans people are even a thing. I've seen transphobia that compares it with a mental illness, which I can understand their perspective. But what people forget is how fluid gender can be. No I'm not talking about things like otherkin, which is believing to be a wolf, cat, demon ect. I'm talking about how people don't feel like they fit into the binary at all.

    I personally am lucky that though I have transphobia parents I do have the internet to help with the biggest issues such as dysphoria and working on choosing a name. (Which I have not done yet.) I've become really comfortable with my curves and body and honestly though I identify as male the only thing I might change would be getting top surgery one day because in general I am more feminine.

    What I wish for especially is that we could clear up the misconception that being trans is a mental illness. Most people seem to think that trans people are having delusions, believing that they already have the bits of the gender they want, and other things like that. However, trans people are fully aware of their reality. For me I think dysphoria is an illness because it causes distress, anxiety, and other issues. But because we can't treat the dysphoria which causes being trans directly what we can do is help an individual feel more comfortable in their own body. And why should we avoid helping someone become trans and be more comfortable if it will help them be a happier more comfortable person?

    tl;dr Being trans is a complicated topic and transphobia, like homophobia, will likely prevail until society changes to become more adaptive to trans people and their needs.

  11. i dont think genders are completely arbitrary, i think theres probably some objective standards that can classify people as male or female with, like the x and y chromosones. i also dont think its necessarily a good thing to let people transition.

  12. Help. I am a transgender male. I believe that a lot more can be done to educate teachers on how to accept transgender students and accomodate them in their classes. Especially in pe. I also think they should strongly avoid having gender Hungary seating plans when they don't know the gender their students identify as.

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