Blog|Finding acceptance as a transgender Scout
After months of internal turmoil, Jayden finally came out to the world as male instead of female. Here, he tells his story.
To me, being transgender is who I am. It’s everything I am; every breath, every cell, every thought. I am a male trapped inside a female’s body.
I came to the conclusion that I was transgender on 3 January 2015, which I now consider my second birthday. This was after months of confusion and sleepless nights. After reading the term transgender for the first time, the word sort of became ‘home’. It just fit everything I was thinking and feeling and I loved the word for that.
The first people I came out to were my two great friends, Felix and Sam. They both knew something had been wrong for a while and were so supportive. Soon afterwards, I told my English teacher, who is gay. She is also a good friend of my Mom’s. I knew she’d be very accepting and give me some advice on how to tell my family.
To say my Mom was shocked is an understatement. I think her jaw hit the floor before I even finished explaining. But she was and still is very supportive, despite it taking a while for her and the rest of my family to get used to it.
There have been a few times when people haven’t been so nice about my transition. I’ve been told it’s just a phase, but I know that’s completely wrong. Most of the time it’s just a lack of understanding and knowledge about transgender people. A lot of my problems come from the use of the wrong pronouns: people calling me ‘she’ when I wish to be called ‘he’. And a few of the younger kids at my old school used to tease me a lot for it; they’d tell me it was unnatural and call me by my old name. Yes, that hurt, but I know who I am and no one can tell me otherwise. People calling me Jayden and referring to me as ‘he’ are the best kinds of acceptance, especially from complete strangers, because it proves to me that people see me as male. And that makes me incredibly happy.
I’ve been part of Scouting for almost 10 years. I did Brownies when I was younger, and then moved on to Scouts and I’m now in Explorers. When I told my Explorer Unit that I was transgender, I just remember them clapping. They were all genuinely happy for me. A lot of them have said that they don’t remember who I even was before I became Jayden, and that (very cheesily) warms my heart.
One of my favourite things about Scouting is the Gang Show. I’ve done the St Albans one for six years now. The first five were before my transition. I wasn’t sure if they’d let me come back and do the show as Jayden. But they did! They accepted me with open arms. And I was even given my own changing room to ensure that I was comfortable. I have to say that was probably one of the happiest moments of my life; doing the thing I love to do the most, as myself, a guy, as Jayden.
Everyone has been incredibly supportive in Scouting. I know that with any issue that I have or any other Scout I know has, everyone is willing to adapt and help with it. And that’s what makes me so happy to be a part of this big ol’ Scouting family.