- Leeth named UAB School of Medicine assistant dean for strategic planning
- Coping with holiday grief
- New water plan saves big money
- Campus police offer holiday safety tips
- Alys Stephen Center Screens Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago
- Hospital feeds underprivileged new moms
- UAB’s Alys Stephens Center presents Yo-Yo Ma Dec. 6
- Southern Miss tops Blazers, 62-27, in season ending game
- Henry Panion selected for 2014 Alabama African-American History Calendar
- Enjoy Christmas at the Alys Dec. 2, “The Season’s First Jingle”
- Engineering’s Ning wins ASTM International award
- Collat School of Business unveils sign at celebration
- Heudebert elected master by American College of Physicians
- Anti-aging strategies can improve more than looks
- On campus ‘blackout’ taken in stride
1-2-3-4 B-E Aggressive
There’s not much about my personality that embodies anger; I dislike drama, I play the peacekeeper, and I avoid anyone that may bring unwanted annoyance to my life. I surround myself with people that are not preoccupied with gossip or high-school-esque drama. The groups of people I surround myself with are designed so that I can have relaxing relationships. Of course, all of my friends are different, but I like to believe that I can mellow them out when they are stressed or angry over something. I honestly love being the stress-relief friend.
The issue, though, with not allowing myself to get angry is that I also don’t like to be assertive or aggressive. I don’t consider myself a pushover, but I am definitely more likely than others to let something go. I grew up around someone who constantly corrected my grammar, posture, table manners, etc., and I do not want to take on that trait. As I come out as transgender to more and more people, I find it hard to continuously correct name use and pronoun use. To be known as someone who corrects everybody would be fully against how I like to act as a person.
Without the strength to stand up for myself by letting people know they are using the wrong pronouns and names, I am allowing myself to be discouraged by being misgendered.
There was a cheer in high school that the cheerleaders always did at football games. Something like, “be aggressive, b-e aggressive!” I keep having to tell myself that being aggressive is okay. I keep telling myself it’s okay to correct my name and pronouns when they are misused by people I’m out to. But, for some reason, I’m having problems bringing myself to do it.
I’ve made a promise to myself that on the first day of classes, when teachers require everyone to introduce themselves, that I’m going to be very open with my gender identity. Tell the class upfront: this is me, you will address me accordingly. “B-E aggressive!” is going to be the new motto. However, from past experiences, I’ve noticed that I always get nervous after I do something. If I have to give a presentation, I’m really calm before and during, but the second after I sit down, my heart races, I get dizzy, my mouth gets dry, and my hands get sweaty. The feeling is nauseating, but I am preparing myself to face the feeling head-on.
I have two more years at UAB and I want to get every minute out of them as possible– as the transgendered man that I am. I’ve always felt that I’ve made a good place for myself here. I’m involved in Student Media, I’ve connected with some of the most amazing professors, and I’ve become part of the University Honors Program family. Forcing myself to be firm with how people address me, I hope, will allow myself to become more embed within UAB as my home and my university.