I have some great guy friends who, I have no reason to doubt, are guys. I also have a sensitive, kind, thoughtful friend who presents as a guy but … might be a trans girl. That’s for my friend to figure out; I am just making some benevolent observations.
I visited my friend today. My friend is perhaps 75 years of age, and on the walls are mini-posters with various witticisms, including one that’s maybe not funny at all: “This is not the life I ordered.”
My friend was encouraging and positive toward me while, over the years, seeing me transition from presenting as a guy to living openly as the girl I fundamentally am. Recently, my friend opened up conversationally about childhood, specifically about being ten years old or so, and socially preferring to avoid boys of that age, and playing with girls instead, and playing with dolls. My friend’s brother confronted the doll-playing with angry ridicule and scorn, and a lecture to the effect of “No! You’re a boy! Boys don’t play with dolls. Go play baseball!”
The story matched something in my own past. At a young age, I, too, enjoyed playing with dolls, and my mother recently told me that when my father found me doing so, my father furiously grabbed the doll out of my hands and scolded me.
My friend sounded sad, telling me the story, and on two occasions during my visit, made reference to it now being too late to start something new that, given enough time, would grow into something enjoyable.
Preferring to play with girls, and with dolls, and voicing fundamental regret about life, and being gentle and kind … that doesn’t mean someone is a trans girl. But those items do make for, at least, a tiny pile of circumstantial evidence in favor of that hypothesis.
What if the hypothesis were true? What if my friend really is a not-yet-out trans girl and wants to come out? The first few years of transitioning are the hardest, so it would perhaps mean my friend will be 80 years old before things start to integrate fairly well.
If I didn’t realize I’m trans until age 75, would I then still then have come out? Probably so, yes. But I’d certainly lament all the decades in which I lived a life that was fundamentally sub-optimal, for me.