“And so was he.”

Casper Sullivan

I was twelve and he was thirteen. I was a she and so was he. We knew each other for two years before we dated for the first time, and in that time we spoke all day, every day.

I was fourteen and he was fifteen. We were girlfriends and reluctant to use the term, because we knew we weren’t lesbians. We had no interest in women, or in being women. We understood womanhood perfectly well; it was something to be proud of, and the women around us wore it beautifully, but with us, it was as fitting and exciting as a pinchy old bowling shoe. Seeing the need for a change, we broke up, and in quick succession the videos started to appear in our internet history: How Do You Know You’re Transgender?

It would be six more years before we dated again, and in that time we spoke all day, every day.

I was sixteen and he was seventeen. I was a he and so was he. I went to Disney with him and his family. We wandered through the park from morning until night, until finally we split off from the rest of the group and decided we’d had enough of the excitement. We sat on the curb and talked until midnight, and more than the dazzling lights and novelties, I remember how easy it was to talk to him, to share the moment.

I was nineteen and he was twenty. I was taking care of my brother’s children full time and trying to remember what I wanted from my life. I realized it was him, but I didn’t want to use him as an escape from what were profoundly unhappy times. I decided to finally finish high school, then moved on to college. In that time we spoke all day, every day.

I am twenty-two and he is twenty-three. We’re boyfriends, and quite happy with the term. For a long time, we were waiting for each other to be ready. A decade is a very short amount of time for a relationship, as it turns out. There’s so little you can learn someone else in a single year. There’s so little you can learn about yourself.