Saturday 10 December 2016

Irish college student on the moment he told his parents he was transgender - 'I was prepared to stay in England if they didn't accept me'

Anna Hackett

Published 22/02/2016 | 11:19

Oscar O'Leary Fitzpatrick opened up about telling his parents he was transgender. Photo via Facebook (Humans of Dublin)
Oscar O'Leary Fitzpatrick opened up about telling his parents he was transgender. Photo via Facebook (Humans of Dublin)

Coming out as transgender can be extremely scary and it can be particularly frightening when it comes to opening up to family members.

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Oscar O’Leary Fitzpatrick from Dublin has opened up about the weekend he told his parents he was transgender and said he was fully prepared to begin a new life in England if they did not accept him for who he truly was. 

"When I was about 18 I felt it was time to tell my parents I'm transgender.

 “I was so afraid of their reaction that I actually wrote a letter, left it on top of my pillow and went to England for three days. I didn't think it would happen, but I was prepared to stay if they didn't accept me,” the  Trinity College student told photography project ‘Humans of Dublin’.

The teen then left the letter in his bedroom ahead of a weekend trip to England.  The Trinity college student revealed that a written letter was the only way he could open up to his mum and dad and believed that by being away he would allow his parents to comprehend and react to the news.

“I'm very close to my family so I think giving them some breathing room was the best thing to do. They could get their first reactions and all of their initial feelings out there without saying it and maybe regretting it in the future,” he said.

"When I was about 18 I felt it was time to tell my parents I'm transgender. I was so afraid of their reaction that I...

Posted by Humans of Dublin on Saturday, 20 February 2016

Fortunately for Oscar, his parents have been completely supportive of his transition and he admitted that he has never been more comfortable in himself.

“I’m very lucky because they're supporting me in every way possible ever since. I would never have imagined three years ago that I could be as happy and comfortable in myself as I am now. It's weird growing up and not being able to imagine what your future will be like. I wish there was someone when I was younger who'd be able to tell me I can and will be happy,” he said.

Oscar believes that many Irish people underestimate the difficulty of transitioning, and that there is little medical support available to transgender people.

 I don't think as many people know how logistically difficult it is to transition and to seek support because there are so few doctors that would treat transgender people. I'm lucky to be in a college where I have free support, and as I was the first one to get it, other people can follow my path now. It's still difficult, but you can get there."

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