Overcoming Adversity and Finding True Self

Heather McCoy, a member of the transgender community and an employee at KUCI, has had one beautiful and exhausting journey becoming who she is today.

McCoy had always felt more comfortable as a woman, but coming out was more difficult than most of us could ever imagine.  Though she came out at the age of 29 as a woman, Heather had always known that this was the path she should have taken.

“I would watch Velma from Scooby Doo, and wonder why I couldn’t be like her,” McCoy says. High School was rough, and she reminisced on the idea that “football players could dress like cheerleaders on Halloween as if it was completely fine on such a day, but completely taboo on any other day.”

If members of society didn’t possess so much animosity and judgment toward the transgender, the journey of coming out would be easier for a person experiencing such discomfort in his or her own skin.

It is difficult, especially in the city of Irvine, to go out and feel comfortable in your skin as a transgender without receiving stares from people that do not understand this journey.We often forget how easy our own lives and we can take things for granted at times. For instance, the trouble of using a public restroom for a transgender is an ordeal. Hoping to accomplish the goal without offending a person in the same bathroom is difficult, because people within our city are conditioned to view the transgender as “weird” or “not normal.”

McCoy mentioned her concerns with the LGBT community as well, and stated that even within the community, the “T” is silent. The voice of the transgender is lost, making the journey unnecessarily difficult.

The process and operations to undergo the switch is “expensive” and “tedious.” However, McCoy leaves us with a positive and inspiring note.

She voices her support for those that want to come out, and expresses her belief that coming out at an earlier age is simpler than doing so at an older one.

It is better to go through this struggle than to live your whole life as a heterosexual male living a lie. After keeping a façade for so long, the truth begins to eat away at one’s very core. McCoy explained that she did not lose friends when she came out.

In fact, her friends were very supportive. As for her parents, McCoy’s mother showed some support, while her father did not whatsoever. However, this did not intimidate McCoy, nor did it sway her decision to come out and be honest with herself.

By becoming more accepting and understanding, we will lift a large amount of stress from someone who is trying to feel comfortable in his or her own skin.