I’m not always a huge fan of the Huffington Post, but much props to them for this article about transgender people struggling to gain respect in Romania.
Patrick’s good friend Sasha founded TRANSform, the first NGO to serve the needs of Romania’s transgender community, in 2013 (the same year they both started their HRT), with Patrick taking on the role of executive director. It was an unofficial support group at first, picking up, in a way, where Robyn McCutcheon, the first American diplomat in the history of the U.S. who transitioned while serving with the DOS [while serving at the Bucharest embassy in 2011], had left off.
For the record, I know a lot of people in Romania (and RM) are unsettled by homosexuality and especially transgender issues. Hey, I understand the feeling. But if you get to know people you find out that hey, they’re just ordinary people who have an unusual (to you) story. Some gay/transgender/queer/lesbian people are awesome, some are assholes, and some are boring. It’s only weird and strange until you get used to it and then it’s no big deal.
And even if you loathe Patrick and the concept of being transgender, just think about how much courage it took for him to face his family, his friends, and society in general in order to be true to himself. Respecting yourself, even if you’re a heterosexual cisgendered individual, is HARD WORK, so bravo Patrick, and bravo to everyone else out there who is unafraid to be who they are :)