Clarion, Pa.- Students and faculty gathered in Hart Chapel to hear the success story and personal journey of Aiden James Kosciesza. The speaker explained the dynamics of transitioning, being transgender and coming out as yourself.
He said the terms used to describe transgender individuals are changing, and there is a line between current and dated terms for the community and its members. When talking about a transgender individual, the concepts of being transgender and being transsexual are different and cannot be related to one another. It is no longer accepted to relate the idea of sexuality and gender identity to one another when trying to determine terminology.
Also, calling someone who is transgender a cross-dresser is not only inaccurate, but insulting as Kosciesza pointed out. Accusing that person of “posing” as a member of the opposite sex when in reality they are just dressing to express their true identity is unwelcome. Some of the correct terms that are, for now, considered up-to-date are monochers like “transgender” or “gender non-conforming.”
There are articles about some people post-transition who regret their decision to change or miss their old self. Acknowledging these stories, Kosciesza said that this was not a very common problem for transgender people and is actually very rare. When someone changes, it is a decision that they make for themselves to better their life and fully live up to their true identity.
Kosciesza talked about the different difficulties associated with transgender teens and youth who know they want to make a change but do not know how to talk to their friends or family. Part of the difficulty faced is coming out to parents. When their child makes a life-changing and controversial decision like this, parents may often feel ashamed or ridiculed by their peers, which makes it harder to open up to parents about this issue for the trans individual.