I want to share my story. It must’ve been around 2001, I was about 5, and I fell in love with a girl in my kindergarten class. I recall clearly the times when we slept together during the naptime or kissed behind things, hiding. Having been raised by my grandparents, I never really was close with my parents. My grandma used to clothe me in dresses and pull my hair back into a neat and tight ponytail. I did not like that at all. I used to secretly pack my shorts and T-shirt in my school backpack with a teddy bear design. In retrospect, I was like a boy from an early age. When girls were playing with dolls and Barbies, I grew up playing with cars or playing soccer with my friends.

By the time I was in school, everything began to change. I had gone through my school years with internal conflict, doubts and questions about my internal feelings. I was confused. To live a life with a constant internal conflict brought a lot of stress. I started to discard anything that was feminine. To the point, when I had my first period, I had the ugliest feeling ever. My mom’s comment Now you’ve become a woman rankled me because I perceived and felt myself a boy. To live a life where I constantly repressed my inner self. lied and confirmed to the assigned gender norm to be someone else was hellish. I often thought to myself, Why can’t I be like everyone else? I started to hate myself.

My life remained in that hell until I turned 15 years old. That’s when I fell in love with a girl who was a grade younger than me. I was terrified. I was desperate thinking that she would ever take an interest in someone like me. My whole world changed, and I took it as an opportunity to be myself at last. We began dating. Dating her was great while it lasted. We hid our relationship from our friends and classmates, but eventually, her parents found out about us. They attacked me with all the heinous swear words in the book. Have mercy on me! Then her mom called my mom to out me to my parents. And we had no choice but to break up.

My classmates and schoolmates all thought that I was a lesbian, but it was at that time that I really accepted myself as a trans man. My parents scolded me, beat me, and grounded me. To be damned and hated that much made me want to die. I left home because of their transphobia and our constant arguments. They disowned me. They said that they didn’t need a daughter like me and told me to get lost. No matter what happened, I stood strong. Perhaps that’s why I am still here, alive. I am 19l now. I’ve become a student in a university. I’m open-minded and don’t want to hide who I am. I don’t hesitate to let people know that I am a trans man. Some understand and some don’t. As time went by, my mom softened. We talk and she’s more understanding now. As for my dad, he knows. His attitude is It’s your life, you probably know it better.There are not a lot of trans people in Mongolia, and there are many more trans women than trans men like me, which is why people don’t understand people like me.