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How would you describe your gender identity?

"My gender identity is non-binary and my expression is transmasculine."

How did you first discover you were nonbinary/transmasculine?

"In fifth grade, I wrote a short novel about a character who saved the world with their "clones." The clones were the same genetic make up of the protagonist except one was feminine and one was masculine. Although I didn't understand it at the time, I think this was when I first started to navigate what it felt like to feel fluid with gender."

How did you decide getting top surgery was for you?

"Top surgery was probably the first thing I knew that I wanted in my transition. Testosterone has always been something I go back and forth about but top surgery was a certainty for as long as I can remember. I never felt any attachment to my chest before top surgery. Now, it's probably my favorite body part."

How has your journey been taking testosterone? 

"I have started and stopped taking testosterone a few times but at the moment it feels really necessary for my mental health. It helps me pass when I need to pass and, most importantly, it helps me feel connected to my body."

What has it been like navigating your gender identity?

"There have been highs and lows truthfully. Coming out to my family was difficult at first and things have gotten better with them but it's been a long process. When I first got prescribed testosterone, I had insurance that was based in Alabama which made the entire process really difficult and expensive. In the last few years, I've been super fortunate in finding community so I always have support when I need it."

What is one piece of advice you would like to share with the younger generations?

"Don't do what everyone else is doing. Who you are and what you care about is always important, please don't ever limit or change yourself to have "more" friends or be "less" of an outcast."

What is an insecurity about yourself that you would like to share in hopes to help others not feel so alone?

"I've always been so insecure about my smile but I'm learning to love who I am in my most authentic/silly state."

Thank you for this amazing interview, Marley! You are a true inspiration and we celebrate your path to living your best authentic life!  

You can follow them on IG at @marleyormateo 

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