According to the dictionary, an apologia is a  formal written defence of one’s opinions or conduct. An apology is a regretful acknowledgment of an offence or failure. This is designed to be a little of both. You decide how much is apologia, and how much apology. And don’t judge my terrible Latin…

I am sorry that sometimes I am selfish. Well, quite a lot of the time at the moment. Transitioning is a process that relies totally on self-knowledge, which means I have to prioritise myself and my own thoughts and feelings. I need to focus on myself and my own needs, which is not something I’ve always done, and I apologise if that means that I don’t give other people the time and attention that they need.

I am sorry that I am obsessed with my transition. This is the biggest, most far-reaching decision I have ever made, and it takes up my every waking hour. It gets into my dreams too. Whilst life undoubtedly goes on, the changes that I am experiencing are affecting every part of that life, and how I relate to it. I apologise if that means that I find it hard to disengage sometimes.

I am sorry that I get angry. I am generally very mild-mannered, but that does not mean that I am not entitled to lose my temper sometimes. It’s not pretty and I’m not proud of it, but sometimes these things happen. Bear in mind that I am often overheated, uncomfortable, awash with testosterone and misunderstood. At the same time, don’t just automatically blame my temper on those things. Ordinary people get angry at all sorts of things, whatever their hormone-mix. I don’t always have to be nice, and I apologise if that spoils the image some people may have of me.

I am sorry that I am not always happy. People often ask of my transition “But you ARE happy now, aren’t you?” And yes, I am. I feel more complete, grounded, comfortable and fulfilled than I ever have. But that doesn’t mean I’m going to have a permanent smile stuck on my face. If I’m having an off-day, it’s not fair to assume that this is down to some problem connected to my transition, or that “becoming a man” (sic) is making me unhappier or more moody. I apologise that I do not always reflect the success of my life-choices in the size of my smile.

I am sorry that I do not show more emotion. Taking testosterone has blessed me with a calmer attitude, and I am much less prone to big emotional flare-ups. I haven’t cried for nearly four months. That’s a good thing for me, as I feel better, more rational and in control. I still feel a range of emotions, still process things emotionally, just don’t really show them. I know that this is a big change in me, and I apologise if  my apparent lack of emotion seems scary or sad.

I am not sorry that I am transitioning. I know that there’s a lot of people out there who find what I’m doing weird, unnatural, unnecessary and repulsive. I know that there’s plenty of folk who would rather this wasn’t happening, and would prefer it if I just went back to being who they think I was. I will apologise for a lot of things that I do and have done in life, but I will never apologise for being who I am.

Advertisements