Video Transcript: What it's like growing up transgender and Deaf.
BLAKE: Hi, what's up? My name is Blake Culley. This is my name sign. Around 7 or 8 months ago, I started posting vlogs on my Instagram. I talked about my transgender journey. Yep, I am transgender! I identify as AFAB, which means Assigned Female at Birth.
So imagine this, when I was born, the doctors congratulated my parents that they have a baby girl. That doctor assigned my gender as a girl and I don’t identify as a girl now. So, I am an AFAB and I am non-binary. It means that I do not identify with either gender - man or woman. Sometimes, I am one or the other, both or neither of them. I realized that I am transgender at a late age - at 28 years old. Why so late? I had no access to that kind of information and that kind of information is limited. Only hearing people can understand and relate, because there are so many, many, many, many - I'm not kidding! - many vlogs in spoken English. Hearing transgender people explain their transgender journey in-depth and the situations they faced and much more. I would have loved to know more about it, but I couldn't understand and most of the time I was limited to automatic captioning and automatic captions are really not ideal. I became very frustrated. That’s why I did not realize I was transgender until a later age.
I’ve decided to start my own vlogs and become open with the Deaf community. I talk about my transgender journey, what kind of struggles I’ve faced as trans, situations I’ve encountered that I’ve never imagined before as a trans person. The same goes for cisgender people. Cisgender means when you are born, and remember I am AFAB, so if I grew up and I realized that I am a woman now, then that means I am cisgender. However, I am not, because I was born and assigned as female and I identify differently, I am non-binary and that means I am transgender. That’s the difference between cisgender and transgender. I hope that it's clear for you all!
Anyway, the point is that many deaf people find it difficult to have that access, and that kind of information is vital! The only downfall is that I can only share about my personal experiences and I can’t share about other deaf trans’ experiences. Those experiences are their stories and I can only share about mine.
So far, I have gotten tremendous support from the Deaf community and some hearing people, who read my transcripts, those who don't know ASL. Many people have contacted me, saying that they have learned so much from me and learned about different perspectives. There are some deaf trans people that thought they were the only ones out there and have reached out to me asking for support and advice on what to do next in their trans journey. Such as how to talk to their parents and family, etc. So many people have contacted me with overwhelming support... And I've learned so much from them too about things I’d never thought of before. I had an amazing opportunity to do this and share my vlogs about my personal transgender journey with you all.
Thank you for following me and I hope those who haven’t, will follow me, too! Thank you and have a great day! Bye!