Watch: The first time I realised I was non-binary
From the first time holding hands in public, to the first time realising you were LGBTQ+, we all have a first time story.
First Times is a new PinkNews series, with each episode dedicated to a different identity under the LGBTQ+ umbrella.
In the first episode, bisexual women shared their first times.
Now the series returns with episode three, with six non-binary people sharing their first time experiences.
From the moment they experienced transphobia or anti-non-binary attitudes, to the first time they felt gender euphoria, these six people share their stories on camera.
In this episode, Krish, Lizzie, Jake, Jamie, Nneka and Roly open up about the first time they realised they were non-binary.
Krish explained: “It’s a bit of a complicated thing to realise because often you have feelings of realisation before you have the language to express.
“You learn that you’re not weird and that there is some language to explain what you feel.”
For Krish, Hinduism has been a reassuring guide to understanding their gender identity.
They explained: “I related a lot to that – there was no reason to abandon femininity when i wanted to highlight some masculinity.
“There was no strength or weakness, it was just two different types of strength.
“Within the Asian community, it’s been a bit more difficult for me because a lot of people don’t like that a lot of my gender expression and the way I chose to identify comes from Hinduism and how I relate to my culture.
“But the people who get angry at it, get angry because they only have surface level knowledge of what they think Hinduism is.”
Nneka Cummins realised they were non-binary after a conversation with a partner about the fluidity of gender.
“My ex-girlfriend at the time – mentioned non-binary, gender-fluid, and just that idea I started researching and it felt like pieces of a puzzle.
“I started looking back feelings that I’d felt in the past and I just knew it was a label I identified with.
“I went to an all girls school and actually it just made sense to me that that’s not where I should have been.”
For Lizzie Huxley-Jones, realising they were non-binary came happened around the time they found out they are autistic.
They said: “For me, it was very much tied up with finding out I was autistic, which I learned in the last four years.
“When I was growing up I always described myself as a tom boy because there wasn’t a word for not a boy and not a girl.”
Roly, who often vlogs about being non-binary, said they realised after becoming find their “LGBT family” and realising they didn’t have to be restricted to one particular expression of gender.
“I was able to be free to explore more and more and more – I realised actually maybe I don’t just identify as male, and I don’t have to just because I have a more masculine-looking face or whatever.”
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Jamie, who runs FRUITCAKE magazine, said they discovered the term non-binary via social media.
They said: “[I had] that moment of ‘Oh, okay, that feels good, let’s rock with that’.”
For Jake Edwards, realising they were non-binary came after identifying as female to male transgender, they explained.
They said: “I came out FTM transgender first and it wasn’t until I got really comfortable with myself on testosterone and more comfortable expressing things that I didn’t see as masculine on me, and it was through that self-expression and that exploration of what gender really means – and having the comfortability to do that – that I was like: ‘Hey, maybe I’m not 100 percent a man’.”
Watch previous episodes of First Times here.