My First Transgender Experience

Israeli transgender activist Linor Bar-Gil writes about her first love, in the 6th grade, which she also sees as her first transgender experience.

The truth is that being a Transgender in 2014 in Israel is exactly the same as being a transgender in the 80’s in Israel. It was then that I fell in love with one of the boys in my 5th grade class. He played soccer, and I revolved around him like all of the other girls. I used to sit and watch my “boyfriend” in his game, make sure he had water and stay there to cheer him on. So what if in roll-call my name was called on the boys’ list?

Then one day he invited me to his house to do homework. We were alone, after he made ​​sure his younger brothers were out of the house. “We don’t need interruptions while we study,” he claimed. He closed the door behind us, went into his parents’ bedroom, and came back with a videocassette. This was to be my first experience with porn. Until then it was only in my imagination. I had never seen what people do. I had never seen a penis other than my own.

We watched the movie, but I found it difficult to concentrate on it. One thing I knew from that moment – that I’m not attracted to women, that the guy in the video was what mattered to me. I also remember the first thing I said to him was, “Wow, those shoes she is wearing are transparent, and such high heels!” That’s about as far as my interest in her could go.

We spent a lot of time together. By the 7th grade we had sexual experiences together. Sometimes just a touch, sometimes more, but I knew that I had a partner for my secret. My identity was not yet clear, but I knew the sex roles were clear – I was the woman and he was the man!

But then we grew up, and suddenly in the middle of 7th grade, he decided not to talk to me more. I didn’t understand why. That was it. He grew up, he wanted girls, and I felt that I was not good enough. I was crushed. I felt that my personality – my identity – was gone along with him. Suddenly I found myself needing to find my way alone. Do I have to follow along with everyone else? Find a girlfriend? A girlfriend?? I was constantly surrounded by girls, but these were not love interests. As a “feminine” and “funny” boy, these girls were my buddies and nothing more. I was happy for it to stay that way – and for my soccer-player to be my boyfriend, my partner. But things do not stay the same in life, and in a huge turning-point, I became a yeshiva student, left school, and became orthodox.

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