When I hit puberty at the age of 10, I displayed behaviours that would now be considered signs of being trans, but it was the late 2000s so I didn't make the connection and neither did anyone else around me. I started to viciously hate sexually mature females and femaleness, openly talk about wanting to change my name to be gender neutral, dread the thought of having breasts, dread the thought of starting my period, dissociated from my body, blocked out the reality that I had breasts and my period would come soon, switched to gender neutral body covering clothes, openly and explicitly protested at being called "she" and "girl". But I didn't really identify with males either, I hated them too. I had no idea what I wanted. I liked beardless, skinny, long-haired, androgynous male characters and created an alter-ego OC but didn't really connect with anyone on social media about it.
Then the next year I started starving myself and switched to a sort of forced, caricatured femininity, like I was playing out a misogynistic autist's resentful, bitter caricature of what it was to be a preteen girl. I can tell that since puberty I had a subconscious desire to be "like a man" rather than "like a woman" in the way I think and socialize, but I never thought of it in those terms. These desires usually coexisted with a desire to present in a feminine, but desexualized way. I never had the thought that I'm not a female, I just hated it and then made peace fairly quickly. I am lucky I could.
By the time I was a teenager & trans stuff started to enter public discourse it was like I forgot about all this. When my HS best friend came out as non-binary I was disappointed and resisted the name/pronoun change. When all the conversations about trans started happening, I never really made the connection to myself or thought of it as something I might pursue. When I started making all sorts of friends who were trans identified or later came out as trans, none of them really commented on my own status. I never got close to TiFs because, in the back of my mind, I knew I hated what they were doing and I hated the thought of having to pretend we were different "genders". I got on the best with autistic TiMs who were relatively self-assured and didn't impose horniness on me. When I was about 20 I experimented a bit with wearing thrifted men's clothes and I bought a cheap binder to see if it would look good, but never wore it again after the first try.
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