In October 2018, I became friends with a man I was dating.
I didn’t know him at the time, but I had met him through an online dating app.
At the time of our first encounter, we were both in the midst of our relationships.
I was a 20-something woman who wanted to get a PhD and pursue a career as a clinical research associate, while he was a 27-year-old man who was just starting out as a doctor.
The two of us got into the dating app in earnest and began messaging.
We exchanged emails and texts and, eventually, we started to chat.
I felt that we were close.
We had similar interests, and I was passionate about helping people.
He had a passion for music, and we both liked his work.
He was an excellent doctor and had helped me with my clinical practice.
He also had a doctorate in biomedicine from Northwestern University and was a highly respected medical researcher.
The more we talked, the more we felt like we were connected.
And then, one day, I had an epiphany.
I started to wonder, Why do people need to know about me?
Why do I have to tell other people about myself?
How can I be so transparent?
I had a couple of options.
I could pretend I didn.
Or I could say, I am a person who is open about myself, who is trying to be open about my gender identity, who has chosen to identify as female.
In a recent article for The Atlantic, Dr. Tania M. Alves and Dr. Joanna S. Stanczyk, both members of the American Academy of Family Physicians’ Gender Equity and Excellence Commission, explain how they came to the conclusion that men need to be more open about their experiences with gender dysphoria.
This article has been republished with permission from The Atlantic.