Identifies as: Genderqueer
Pronouns: Masculine and gender-neutral
Neighborhood: Originally from North Lawndale, currently resides in Albany Park
"I'm a struggling artist. Whether it's acting, play/screenwriting, filmmaking, photography, sketching, making collages, poetry, or directing films and plays, I feel the arts should not explain what gender is. Art is like the elements flown together. When it comes to injustices and oppressions surrounding gender, sexuality, disability, ethnicity, I use art as a way to express my emotions towards these injustices."
Life's work II:
"If I'm not making art, then I'm also a struggling organizer, since the arts and direct-actions actually help rile people to get up and make a difference."
When did you start questioning gender?
"When I was about five or seven years old, so, mostly growing up."
What is the best thing about being trans/ gender-variant?
"That I can grow my hair long like the other metalheads and get away with it."
Do you have a coming out story?
"It wasn't until I went to Detroit for the US Social Forum in June, 2010. When I saw the riverfront facing Windsor, Ontario, I noticed how beautiful the water flowed and how pinkish red the full moon was rising over, and I knew then they didn't have a gender identity and that I had it in me all along. I knew then, I didn't belong to those gender binaries like the water or moon did, and why the f**k should I? It wasn't until two years later ( a few weeks ago ) that I came out to my partner that I've been with since 2009. I was so scared to tell her I was genderqueer because I feared she would leave me. But, she was cool with it, and a weight lifted off my shoulders."
What issues outside of the queer community do you care about?
"Mostly on issues surrounding disability, being that I have a learning disability as well as suffering from depression/anxiety. It saddens me that mental disabilities such as mental illness are being ignored these days, especially in the city of Chicago where mental health clinics and vital social services that handle mental illness are becoming critically endangered."
What do you think are the most important issues facing the trans/ gender-variant community?
"I think safe spaces, like public restrooms, as well as dealing with the public school and community college system here are/should be extremely important. I also think that the entire health community, not just mental health, should be held accountable in making their clinics and services affirming and friendly for the trans/gender-variant community."
To nominate a person for T in the life, email: Kate Sosin email@example.com