WOW | Coffee Break

THE DIVERSITY OF BEING A TRANS WOMAN

Simran Sherchan
National Program Coordinator
Federation of Sexual and Gender Minorities

About yourself: I was born biologically male but I always found myself a female. Even before I got to understand about my gender I was treated differently. People called me names like hijara and so on. It wasn’t until I was 19 years of age that I understood who I really was – a transgender. As Nepal is a male dominant society, disclosing my true identity to my family was out of the question. I had to suffer in silence for many years. I had family pressure to get married and seeing there was no way out I told them who I really was. I told my family that their son is not what he seems and that my feelings are of a girl and those feelings are real.

You can’t imagine what the aftershock and response from them was. It was bigger in size compared to the past earthquake we all endured in Nepal. Instantly I was treated like a black sheep and was given the silent treatment. Those moments were painful and my life became chaotic.

Your Achievements: I have come to terms with who I am regardless of what society thinks of me. I am confident and independent, and on my own feet fighting for my identity.

Why is being a woman important: I am proud and happy to be a transgender. Though I am a woman from within I cannot be a woman completely and neither am I a man. The fact is that I am a transgender and I will always be one. I can relate to a women and I do respect their qualities. Women are emotionally stronger than men. They are patient, faithful and forgiving.

Difficulties yet to overcome: The biggest difficulties were what I had to overcome regarding my identity which I have now accepted as part of life. It doesn’t matter what others have to say. I am happy the way I am.

Happiness is: It could be anything; for instance when someone talks sincerely to me or is considerate, things like that. I find happiness in the small moments of life.

Message to women: In this 21st century, whether its women or transgender, we all need to be stronger, come forward without hesitation and remorse, and fight for our rights.