A chat with Beck: what I learned this year

A+chat+with+Beck%3A+what+I+learned+this+year

Beck Iannucci

The most important thing I learned this year is that I should hold my head high. I dealt with a lot of backlash from my peers at school, but their ignorance isn’t my fault and that trans students don’t deserve to be treated this way. We don’t deserve to have a teacher glaring at us with crossed arms because we used the gender neutral bathroom. We don’t deserve laughter when correcting a teacher on our names or pronouns. We don’t deserve to have our own names corrected, as if we don´t know that they are. We don’t deserve stares at Starbucks when the barista calls our name or the ¨oh¨ that can be heard after the barista, who had looked at everyone but you, hands over the drink. You deserve to go about your day as your cis peers do. To not have the awkwardness of correcting people all the time and not have eyes on you or angry body language directed at you. 

I finally learned this thanks to two teachers, a school psychologist, and a guidance counselor that showed me by constantly being an ally. By sticking up for me when I couldn´t and advocating for things I needed to make my school life and the lives of other trans and nonbinary students comfortable. They helped show me that we were actually making a difference by speaking up. I´ve watched things change for the better right in front of my eyes and it made me unbelievably proud of all of us.

It proved to me that you can and should speak up when someone is treating you like garbage. This goes along with knowing your self worth. You matter and you need to remind yourself that. People should not be singling you out and making fun of your identity. Regardless of what they say, you are valid, your name is valid, and your pronouns are valid. You don’t need to force yourself to fit the expectations of others — whether they’re your family, friends or peers. And they most certainly don’t have the right to humiliate you in public. You are not the punchline of a mediocre joke. You´re alive for more than that. You can make a difference. You have passions and goals. You´re a human being that deserves respect. If anyone disagrees, they aren’t worth your time. You don’t need to keep making excuses for them.

I´m so glad I have these amazing people in my life that made me feel valued and that they´re here as a resource for other students that need them.