In the fight for equal rights, transgender issues have been left in the dust
by Christie Chisholm, Weekly Alibi, August 25, 2011
Sometimes it takes a while for people to figure out who they are. For Adrien Lawyer, that’s an understatement.
“I didn’t know there was such a thing as myself until I was 26,” he says, smiling and scruffy at the end of a long day. It wasn’t until he sat down with a copy of 1993’s Stone Butch Blues, a landmark novel, that he was introduced to the word “transgender.”
Born in a woman’s body and growing up in 1970s Mississippi, he believed he’d be stuck inside it for the rest of his life. “I had lived in the world long enough to know that I was going to have to accept my female body,” he says. Friends would tell him, You are a woman, so be one. Lawyer settled for being a lesbian.
It was through Stone Butch Blues that Lawyer discovered options were available, such as hormone replacement therapy. His fuse was lit. The path he planned for himself, however, was a difficult one—expensive and exhilarating and scary and absent of markers to guide him. Without a single friend who’d gone through something similar, he had to guess and stumble his way through his transition.