Disconnection

I’ve never felt entirely at peace with myself or amongst the people around me. For years I didn’t know why, but now I do: they didn’t understand me and didn’t see me for who I was. I didn’t even know who I was myself.

I was always attracted to all sorts of people. I found a part of the answer in my sexual identity when I was fifteen and realised that I was bisexual. With that realisation I found a space within the queer community where I fitted reasonably well. From there I kept searching. Every time I heard a new term, such as genderqueer or demiboy, I looked it up: are they talking about me?

I finally realised about half a year ago that I was looking for my gender identity. Which I understand to be non-binary or genderflux. That insight has brought me closer to myself. Yet I can still feel estranged from myself if I think about my gender too much. I can get the feeling that I’m cheating, that I’m ‘not trans enough’. Some days I suddenly partially identify with my gender assigned at birth, other days I want nothing to do with it. This causes confusion.

These photographs of Roos Klijn express my feelings .

‘Stay soft. That’s what I tell myself with everything I do and create. Every day I follow the transition of my love Tijn up close – so fast and so slow at the same time. In the meantime, I’m changing inside; from always searching to slowly finding more. That’s why Rachel’s words move me. For me they are about feeling more and looking more mildly.’

Roos Klijn, photographer