On May 12nd 2001 was born Léonie. 16 years later, she becomes Alexander. She becomes a He, belonging to these many teenagers born in the wrong body.
In the botanic garden of Tourcoing, he explains his change, how he feels about himself but also how his family, friends and society feel about him and people like him. He identifies himself as transgender, after a few phases of gender fluid. These days, he’s about to announce it to his parents so he can start treatments. He explains to me how these treatments work and that an heavy psychiatric treatment is needed as well for several months. For minors, a parental authorization is needed to do so. While we’re discussing, Alex and his two friends who came for the occasion, explain to me their parents’ opinion on the LGBT community. One of them (former lesbian, now transgender), Josh, already did his lesbian coming out a few years ago but has yet to do the one to start trans-identity treatments. The other one (bisexual), Hughes, already did his coming out to his entourage. His family and his friends are tolerant.
Alexander hopes he can start the treatment quickly and then do a mastectomy. Changing his sex isn’t for sure at this time, representing a more important step in this evolution. He explains that sometimes some teachers already had some remarks during the year. Other students also tried to know more about it, but he says that it is none of their business and that, apart from social networks, he avoids talking about it because it is his own business. Alex unfortunately had a dysphoric disorder during a few moths, and the way people saw him was complicated, linked to the idea that “I look too much like a girl, they will think that I am a girl”. These both things mixed with other problems created an awful feeling.
Change and difference are mostly seen during his first year of high school and the year before, as he wavers between androgynous periods and gender fluid to finally conclude on trans-identity. Yet, when he talks about his childhood, it seems like some signs already hit him, such as wearing clothes qualified as male clothes. “For example, I remember that I took a Diesel hoodie from one of my boy cousins and I was very happy when I was wearing it”. He then decides to explain to me his name’s origin: Alexander. “It comes from the All Time Low’s singer (an american pop rock band) Alex Gaskarth. It’s a name that I always loved, and I like that man a lot”.
Since we met, Alex did his coming out to his parents, by sending a letter two weeks ago. They met a few days ago when Alex came back from his vacations: “it’s not very clear yet, they aren’t used to it, they want to talk about it again, anyway I wait for this saga’s continuation”. But when we speak about the actual situation, he seems sure about one thing: he’s on the good way. He tells me that everything is going much better, he has more self-confidence and the idea of being a boy is a lot more embedded in his brain.