Teenagers in transition

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A transgender couple from Tulsa, OK, finds resolve and strength through each other. Katie, now a transgender girl, was born a boy named Luke. Arin, a transgender boy, was born a girl called Emerald.

Arin, 17, and Katie, 19, now live fully as their true genders, rather than the sex to which they were born. In addition to hormone therapy, Katie underwent gender affirmation surgery a little over a year ago and her boyfriend, Arin, a high school student, had his breasts removed last month.

Arin expressed “hatred” for his breasts, and is overjoyed to be able to enjoy his usual activities, such as swimming and lifting weights at the gym, without worrying what others may perceive him as.

“When you’re transgender you learn that your outside doesn’t matter, it’s what’s on the inside, when I look in the mirror now, I just see what I’ve always seen. It was just a guy,” Arin said in a video posted by The Sun.

“I have some manly features, but none that I don’t think anyone can pick out,” Katie said.

“Being transgender myself I probably understand Arin better than anybody else. And how good he feels, how complete he feels. I think that, that bond that we have is unbreakable,” Katie said in the video.

The relationship survives (among other things) through their shared experience. Although their mutual support has carried them along way, many of their peers pulled them down. Both victims of bullying, Arin received so much scrutiny that he had to change schools once he came out to as transgender. Katie, who had a good group of friends in college, lost them all one day, when they caught wind of her past through the grapevine.

“I had a lot of friends in college that were really close to me. Then, all of a sudden, they just stopped talking to me,” Katie said, according to The Sun.

Arin’s mother, Denise, said that allowing her son to be who he is has resulted in some people who “questioned” her as a parent, and that there are people from their past that they simply avoid now.

429Magazine

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