How do you think the queer aspect of your identity has evolved with you along the years?
I knew pretty early in my life that I was on the bisexual spectrum, however regarding my trans identity, I pushed that away as hard as I could at the beginning. I had so much internalized trans hostility and even though I was comfortable sharing my bisexuality and claiming that ‘everyone can love whoever they want’, I think, in retrospect, that I really didn’t connect to it due to all the internalized queer and transphobia I had.
It was actually during the Covid lockdown in 2020 that I saw for the first time non-binary people and trans people in social media that were proud of being themselves and talking about their personal stories and feelings. It was then when something clicked. I felt so inspired with all this positive representation I found on the internet. I honestly never thought I was going to be living in the way I live now, and I am very thankful for it.
Did those people inspire you to take your next steps?
In a big part, yes. There were things I always wanted to do, but I pushed them away as I was somehow used to fitting into all the stereotypes expected of me and too afraid of the thought of being trans. However, finding all these people online gave me the courage to move forward, it was definitely life-saving. For example, cutting my hair was something I always wanted, and a very important step for me. I finally did it during that year and that was actually one of my first viral videos. It felt so good that the joy I was feeling encouraged me to go public with it, and then I had hundreds of comments of people opening up and talking about how they were feeling. That was the first time I found a community on social media. It was not only me, we were many.
Looking backwards, why do you think cutting your hair represented a big step in your journey?
Well… I grew up in a small village in Bavaria, in the south of Germany, which is quite conservative. I didn’t really know what was or even if a queer community existed back then, and I was naturally afraid. I was kind of aware of my bisexuality and open about it with my family and friends but I was still ‘fitting in the role of a stereotypical woman’. I had my hyper feminine side, having long hair, wearing makeup, etc, and people would consider me ‘beautiful’, so I thought that by changing, I was going to lose all the approval. While I was growing up it was not something easy to let go because I was afraid of being alone, being bullied and/or to disappoint my family if I came out as trans.
I always thought as a teenager that I was going to move away one day, cut all contact with everyone I knew, and leave everything behind, to then finally cut my hair and be whoever I wanted to be. Almost a decade later, quite the opposite is happening: I proudly displayed my whole life online and most of the people that were with me back then are still around and interested in learning, supporting, and becoming an ally, not only because of me, but because it is something they didn’t know before.