Being a transman won’t stop me from carrying my babies
Testimony of Invisible V. published in the LGBT Bombastic Magazine (Uganda), n. 4, 2017, pages 8-9
My name is Invisible V. I am a transgender man, above 18 and I work with Tranz Network. I am a social, kind and loving person. Biologically, I was born the only female and I’m the last born after three boys. My siblings and I are orphans – I never saw my father and I lost my mother in 2006. I didn’t complete my education, I dropped out in Senior Four. From then till now, I have been struggling with life, but I thank God that I found another family in Tranz Network- they accept me as I am.
Growing up, I have always felt like a boy. I don’t wear dresses, ‘girlie’ outfits look funny on me. I grew up wearing sneakers, shorts, buggy pants and my hair was always chopped. It wasn’t just about the dressing, I really did feel like a boy but had no idea this was a natural occurrence.
Initially, I fought it and my brothers fought my boyish tendencies even more. They always told me that I am not supposed to be a boy but a girl and when it became clear that I would not be furthering my education, they quickly reasoned that I was now mature and ready for marriage.
Most transmen have identified as lesbians before. I was very aware of my attraction to women and identified as a stud – I didn’t know about transgender persons or non-gender conforming persons so I thought I was just gay and called myself as thus.
I met Olga in 2014 and she introduced me to the LGBTI community. For the first time in my life, I felt like I had met someone who got me and my woes. All this while, I’d thought I was alone. Olga introduced me to other people, and eventually I got introduced to Ram. I remember the first time I walked into Ram, the only thing that was ringing in my head was “OH MY GOD! I have a full family!”.
I got introduced to Williams but still I didn’t really understand what it meant to be trans. William started sensitizing and offering me several resources to help me understand what I was feeling and generally understand what it meant to be trans. Everything I read opened my eyes and mind, I felt like all the resources were describing me.
I didn’t go through your typical journey of self- acceptance like most people in the LGBTI community. First of all, since I was a little boy, my mother dressed me up in sneakers, shorts and t-shirts. Whenever the neighbours complained, she would tell them to go and dress their daughters whichever way they preferred but they most certainly wouldn’t be deciding how she dressed me.
After my mother’s death, I went to live with my brother in Tanzania. His wife is a very religious person and she made it her mission to ‘change me’. I was rebuked for indulging in boys’ games, which I strongly enjoyed and she did everything to femininise me with house chores or encouraging me to play more girlish games. All her attempts did not yield much result. I vividly remember when playing the “mummy and daddy game”, a number of times I opted to be the visitor since I never wanted the mother’s role and my playmates never allowed me to take the father’s role.
When I first heard about trans persons, I did all the research I could, read everything I got my hands on. Suddenly, I started to feel a sense of belonging. I have since grown in understanding and knowledge and finally, for the first time in my life, I fully appreciate myself.
As a straight transgender man, I have had numerous relationships that have been psychologically torturous. My ex-girlfriend, although she knew I identified as a transman, would sometimes point out the things that I hate the most about myself- the vagina and breasts. I already know I have them and I hate them, why would anyone who claims to love me throw these facts in my face every time we got into an argument? It is almost as though she was out to deliberately hurt me where she knew it would hurt the most.
That relationship ended and I moved on to someone else who was most probably sent by God to renew my faith in love and the human race as a whole. My girl understands me; could be because she is a doctor and it is easy for her to understand these things. Right now, I am focusing on keeping in this happy space and I’m very much looking forward to transitioning.
The one thing I know shocks people about me is the fact that I want to carry my own children. So, while I am thinking of transitioning, I will keep my uterus until I have had at least two children. Many people say I am confused when I share this desire with them, but I have seen a few trans men that have had children and I don’t see why I can’t either.