My name is Emi Louise and I'm a proud member of the LGBT community. I would like to share my story with you all, because I like to think that it's an empowering one! I'm so lucky in several ways. I am finally the woman I was meant to be. As a trans woman, I have also self-published my own LGBT novel. The Butterfly on Fire: Mind, Body and Soul really shows what it's like for a trans woman in the world today.
As a young boy, I tried to get by in life by pretending to be a gay man. That in itself meant that I got very badly bullied throughout my entire school life. Yes, that is the sad element of my story, but just as important. It made me strong, and taught me to defend myself. I look back on those memories with a fondness in a way. Now that I am myself and happy, it no longer matters.
And I am myself. I am happy. I am a woman now. However, there is no denying the issues that being transgender in modern day life causes. I remember the 'awkward' phase when I wasn't quite passing, and getting abuse on the streets on a daily basis. When I first told my boss at the time that I was going to start transitioning, they told me openly on the spot that I was not going to have my contract renewed there because they couldn't have someone like me working there. (Yes, that was illegal... but it happened.) I've been turned down for other jobs that I was given, but when they saw my passport details were not up to date they refused me the job. Again, openly. I've been attacked. I've been laughed at. There is still a long way to go in the fight for freedom and even safety in the trans community.
But it's really not all bad news. Everyday it feels like I am finally living my life in colour, after barely surviving in a forever monochrome world. Now I pass as a woman, it's so much easier to blend in with society and be myself. I have my memories of living as a gay guy, and being bullied for both that and after transitioning. However, I also have the hundreds of people that are happy for me. I have a book out with my story, that is getting some great reviews on amazon. I have a family that support me (which I am very lucky for) and food, shelter and warmth.
I hope my story is one that empowers, and brings people forward to the fight for equality! We are born how we are, and we deserve nothing less than acceptance. Ignorance is not an excuse.
Be yourself, love yourself and be proud to be you every single day of your beautiful life.
E. L. Croucher
Author of The Butterfly on Fire: Mind, Body and Soul
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Real stories from the World - LGBTQ+Non-Fiction
This collection of stories is an attempt to share stories of how it is to live as a member of the LGBTQ+ community in different parts of the world. The first stories will post the 17th of May, the International day against homophobia and transphobia...