‘I’ve come to understand that I am transgender. I’ve come to understand that I’m uncomfortable with my maleness, not my masculinity.’
YouTube blogger Stef Sanjati threw all her carefully made plans for a ‘poetic, cinematic’ coming out-video over board – in favor of having an honest and moving conversation about what being trans means with her nearly 70.000 followers.
‘When it comes down to it, you just have to speak and you just have to talk about it,’ she says.
‘Because that is what is important. You need to be heard, not to be shown.’
Acknowledging her being trans put a lot into perspective, the make up-artist says, including her childhood and the preference for two Disney movies: Mulan and The Little Mermaid.
‘The Little Mermaid fought tooth and nail to become who she knew she was meant to be,’ Sanjati says, explaining how the mermaid’s unwillingness to give up when everyone told her ‘no’ eventually led to her happiness.
‘What I’m going to do, and what a lot of trans people do, is they fight tooth and nail to become who they are supposed to be on the outside.
‘We’re already those people inside.’
But one of the biggest points Sanjati talks about is the subject of trans women, especially trans women of color, living in danger, calling the spike in murders ‘astronomical and just horrifying’ – and that she is aware of the privilege she has by being a white, passing person.
She also touches on the subject of trans people being seen as trapped in the wrong bodies – a notion she calls ‘old-fashioned’.
‘It’s not an illness, it’s a reality. It’s who we are as people, and saying we need to be fixed by transforming our bodies into the ideal feminine, you know, traditionally… it’s just not what it’s about,’ she says.
‘This is my girl body. When it has breasts on it, it will still be my girl body. It’s not going to be a different body – I’m not switching bodies. I’m not trapped. I am more free than I have ever been in my life.’
She adds: ‘I don’t feel trapped now, but I felt trapped then.’