Jim Ambrose

August 22, 2012  /  Santa Rosa, California, USA

(Transcript)

  

Hi … nope. (Laughter).

Hi, my name is Jim Bruce (Ambrose) and in 2006 when I was 29 years old I started taking testosterone which makes my voice deep and gives me this hair on my face and is killing my hairline and I have chest hair and I have much bigger muscles than I did before. Because before I was living as female and I was living as female because when I was born I was born with a very small penis and internal testes and XY chromosomes and my parents were very upset.

My doctor was very upset and the only information that they had out there to treat a problem like me was to remove my penis and take out my reproductive organs because they didn’t like the way it looked. And this isn’t easy, what I’m doing by the way.

Parents, if you want your kid to be sitting here in 20 years, telling this story, just remember your kid is going to want his genitals. Your kid is going to want her genitals. I’ll say it again: This stuff is really hard to say. And I’m 35. I’m 35, and I’m just beginning to put my life together. My mother regrets having my penis cut off and my testicles cut out so much that she can barely bear to talk about it.

It’s like I told a parent two years ago who had a kid who was 15 in a situation similar to mine. I told her: 'Your comfort level is less important, in the grand scheme of things, than your kid’s right to choose for himself his life path, what he wants to do with his body.'

Your kids aren’t alone, and neither are you. That doctor isn’t alone. There are communities of support all over the world. There are organizations that will advocate for you, on your behalf, and will help your young person, your kid meet other people like them, meet other kids, share their stories because the isolation will kill them, and it will kill you, and the togetherness and the bonding and the shared experience and the support will save them, and they’ll save you. ©