- (FTM) Trans-cendence -
Returning to his college dorm room after watching a bit of TV to empty his mind, Michael paused outside his door and listened. Silence. Telling himself that Jamie was sure to be okay without easing his nerves one bit, he slowly turned the handle and wrenched the door open harder than he had meant to.
He winced and offered a small smile when the door banged against the wall. Jamie looked up from his bed, twitched the corners of his lips out of politeness, and went back to staring at his phone.
Suppressing a sigh, Michael crossed the room and pushed himself up to his bed, which was across from Jamie's. He didn't even need to ask. "You haven't made the call, have you?"
Jamie shook his head. "No," he said, voice cracking though he appeared stoic.
Michael waited for him to say something further, but after an awkward moment realized that no explanation was coming. He fidgeted but then stopped when his bed creaked. "…Well," he said, unsure of what to say when he had given his best pep talk on the same exact issue to the same exact person an hour ago. "Didn't you say before that you were going to tell them today?"
"Yeah. Just… " Jamie vaguely waved his small hands in the air, frustrated. "I'm getting on it."
"Yeah. Yeah, sure you are. You've been getting on this since an hour ago at the earliest and three months ago at the latest. And today, you're going to push it back again and—"
"—Three months ago, there wasn't a need for this phone call," Jamie shot back, voice more scratchy than ever. He cleared his throat to no effect and started speaking again, his voice squeaking and then suddenly jumping down to a menacing tone. "It's just…I know what I'm going to say. I know, but the fuck lot of good it's going to do me when the first syllable outta my mouth is going to make all hell break loose!"
Michael gripped his thick hair for a moment before he let his arms fall. "You're just going to have to risk it, aren't you? Or, or, why don't you go with what I said? Tell them that you just caught this really bad cold. You sound like it, sure enough." He forced a smile and looked at Jamie hopefully, but nothing.
"Mike. I don't think you know that—" Jamie paused, touched his developing Adam's apple, and tried again. "—that this phone call," he continued, as husky as before, "determines whether my parents still cling to the stupid hope that I'm a girl; they accept me as their son; or they reject me and slash my funds for being a queer freaksh—"
"—Don't say that. Christ." Michael looked away, shocked and angry that Jamie had listed these points off so quickly. "L–look. No one gets this better than I do, okay? I'm the guy who's living with you as you're going through your, your second fucking puberty! And it's not like you can or you will de-transition. Just come out once and for all and… and… see what happens."
Silence. Jamie just continued staring at his phone.
"For fuck's sake!" Mike cried, letting his frustration get the better of him. "How could they have missed how a good chunk of money was being taken out of your bank account regularly? Taking T isn't like the cheapest thing in the world! They probably already figured out that you just decided to go ahead and start hormone therapy!"
Jamie still said nothing. Stroking his phone with his thumb, he appeared as though he was struggling for breath underneath his chest-compressing binder.
"Motherfuck," Michael swore, violently breaking the silence. "Stop being such a pussy and just—"
He fell suddenly silent, horrified, when Jamie raised his hand. The feminine curves of the unfortunate boy's lips flattened out as they were pressed together under his uplifted index finger. The blaring ring of the dial tone on speaker filled the dorm room as Jamie stared defiantly at his roommate with fire in his eyes as he finally made his call for all the wrong reasons.
Completely startled, Michael looked at Jamie's face and immediately thought two things: 'Shit!' and 'No!' But before he could speak to take back his words, there was a raspy clutter on the other side of the phone.
"H–hello?" The voice of an elderly woman came over the line, sounding hesitantly elated. "Jamie? I haven't heard from you in so—"
"Mom." Jamie's voice was as low as it would go. "Uhm. Yeah." There was nothing but a faint fizz of static on the other end. "See, mom. As- as you can tell, I decided to go to the gender dysphoria clinic and—"
"—Oh my god…" It was a horrified whimper. "Jamie no…No, you didn't…"
"Mom, I'm sorry, but… Actually no, I'm not sorry. It's just- It's happening, okay?"
"You said, you promised that you weren't going to- to…" The whimpers degenerated into sobs.
Jamie opened his mouth with a partly sorry, partly irritated expression. No sound came out. And after a while of listening to his mother's weeping, he blinked hard and shut his jaw with a sharp click.
Michael, fidgeting on the other bed, was busy avoiding Jamie's gaze, which he could feel on him. When he, in a brief moment of strange survivor's guilt, glanced at his frozen roommate, he met cool eyes and in that same moment, the escalating sniveling was cut off.
"…Right," Jamie said, throwing his phone away from him with a too casual flick of his hand. He cleared his throat. "So. Now they know."
Michael looked at the phone. The screen was black and glossy. Looking up to meet Jamie's eyes, all he could think was that though it had a certain tint of petty triumph, his roommate's glare wasn't quite proud.
"…Yeah," Michael said. He had been expecting angry screaming at the worst. "I guess they do. …L-Look, Jamie, I'm- I'm sorry that I said—"
"—And I guess that you won't have to listen to me bitching to you about this anymore," Jamie said bitterly. "Since you were obviously so tired of it."
"Jamie, you weren't…it was just that…" Mike suddenly felt very stupid. "I just- I didn't think, didn't know that—"
"—Yeah. I know," Jamie said, cutting him off unapologetically as he violently heaved himself off his bed with a loud squeal of the springs. "But you know, no one really knows if they're not trans. And, and, it's okay. I was…expecting it."
Michael thought again of how fast Jamie had listed off his three predictions of what would happen, how he had provoked the call due to his stupid, stupid slip, and vaguely wondered if he had ever witnessed his own mother cry for any reason, let alone for just being himself.
"…Jamie," he said, flinching, just as Jamie had slammed the door open. He looked at his roommate and said, "I'm sorry" in his head, but didn't dare break the silence again.
Jamie stood in the doorway with his head high, arranging his shirt to try to hide his hips. And after a tense moment, he made eye contact and nodded once—he knew—and left the room.
I [the writer; "TheLuciferPerson"] am FTM transgender, and this was just a little thought that I wrote down on how my family might react if/when I physically transition.
If anyone has any questions about being transgender or, I dunno, just wants to talk and/or share their own experiences, the Review option is below and PM-ing me is always welcome.