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Digital Subscriptions > Psychologies > No.130 Healthy Happy Body > Finding your self

Finding your self

Our sense of self underpins confidence and wellbeing – who we are, what we do, where we belong. But what if these things are not clear or if life undermines them? Three people talk to us about their struggle with identity

AGENDER CHOICE

Half of all millennials believe gender shouldn’t be limited to the categories of male and female*. Raised as a girl, and now identifying as agender, Tyler Ford is a 25-year-old writer, speaker and campaigner for transgender awareness.

I grew up confused about my gender. No one around me ever talked about gender in a way that I related to. There was never any room for ambiguity, just, ‘You’re either a man or a woman.’ I never had the words to describe myself or how I felt.

My mum loved me for me, and let me wear what I wanted, but you can only experiment so much when you lack a fundamental understanding of who you are. At secondary school, I started wearing skirts and make-up to look hot for the boys, because that’s what seemed to matter, but I soon became depressed and began hiding my body. I was trying to figure out my identity and sexuality, but I didn’t even know that my gender could be questioned. Then at college, people started to misgender me. Dinner ladies would say, ‘What would you like, sir?’ and I would think: ‘Wait, what?’ It would happen so often that I began to think: ‘What are these people seeing that I’m not?’

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Psychologies July 2016- Healthy Happy Body
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