“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
Our sense of identity provides the foundation for who we are and how we interact with others. However, what happens when we do not have the opportunity to examine ourselves, and we experience difficulty with answering the question, “Who am I at my core?” And in particular, “Who am I regardless of what everyone else is trying to tell me that I am?”
It can be challenging to stay true to ourselves while also wanting to conform to familial and societal expectations. Children and teens strive to find a sense of belonging and love from their peers and family. Often, this may mean hiding certain parts of themselves to be accepted, such as their gender identity.
As an adult, you may have worn different masks in an attempt to fit in. Perhaps you are starting to question who you are without the various masks. Or maybe you have reached a point where you are tired of wearing a mask but are fearful of taking it off.
This is where I come in. Together we begin to unravel the messages we have received from society, culture, and our families about who we should be, how we should act, and what we can or cannot do.
I am a gender-affirming provider and follow the APA and WPATH Standards of Care. I understand that gender identity and expression is on a continuum. My goal is not to question who you are (aka gate-keeper model) but to help you gain further understanding of your gender identity, expression, and potentially internalized transphobia due to unfortunate messages from society.