Wednesday, 25 April 2012

The Rush, Responsibilities And Tragedies Of Fame

Well, I guess it is slowly sinking in at this point... I'm now a well-known figure in the Netherlands. With the impending publication of my story and current issues in influential Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad there's no denial possible any more that this is turning into something huge and it all will have my name attached to it.

With this all I feel both an incredible lightness and a terrible heaviness descending upon me. On one hand institutions like those scary hospitals which made my life a living nightmare can no longer touch me, and my insurance company will soon realize that discriminating against intersex people was not the smartest thing they have done. It's an incredible feeling to so lightly brush away those concerns.

On the other hand you do get people pulling at you from all sides. It's essentially the same old story I have read over and over in the hundreds of books I have read in my life so far. A commoner rising out of nothing through fate into a situation where he or she is given command over a place, situation or group of people. In this particular case it's me becoming the singular face of so-called intersex people, but also humanity as a whole.

You get people who try to gain fame or wealth through you. You get people suggesting and manipulating. You get people trying to take advantage of you. You are constantly forced to remain vigil in order to filter out what is an honest suggestion and what isn't. Who can be trusted and who can't. Naivety has no place in this all. There's no room for softness either. I'm now a leader. It's expected of me that I know what I'm talking about and will take clear, decisive and correct decisions. It's an incredible responsibility.

The tragedy in the title of this post refers to all that which I had to surrender and now have to regain. I lost seven years of my life and 15 years before that due to this ignorance about intersex. It should never have become such a major part of my life. It's not relevant enough for that. I never wanted to become important or well-known in the world because of this. As a child I wanted to be that incredible scientist who makes life better for everyone. It's an ironic twist of fate that I'd end up in this situation now, where I will hopefully improve life for the better for millions, in a way which no one could have predicted.

I have put up a timeline of pivotal events in my life to this point at Even as a brief, succinct summary it expands into over two pages of text, indicating how much of a struggle it has been. Reading it, or worse, writing it makes me experience it all over again. The renewed hope every time with its flame crushed over and over again until the very dramatic year of 2011 when things reached a crescendo and culminated into the first few months of 2012 which were more akin to the final struggles in a long war with a triumphant yet weary return. All in all it took more years to win this initial war than it took for the Second World War to start and end in Europe. Quite a sad comparison point as you'd think that human rights would be a crucial point in Europe considering the atrocities committed in the name of righteousness in the past.

A tragedy can also be found in my exhausted financial resources and the horrendous effect it has had on my family, with my father having pretty much disowned me, contact cut off with the rest of the family, my mother who is stressed to the point where we regularly end up exchanging words, and a general feeling that I really should get my life back in order at this point.

Finding my own place to live and the financial resources to afford this is one of my top-priorities at this point. There are many reasons for this. The primary is simply that I can not get a family doctor here in the city of Rijssen, also known as one of the most conservative cities in the Netherlands, and thus can not get new medication and such without very unpleasant struggles at best. Another reason is that my mother doesn't pull it any more. Recently I had this girl over whom I had met through a recent TV broadcast and it nearly came to blows as while I wish to rapidly build up a social network this conflicts with the privacy and rest my mother desires.

As it's her home where I live now I can do nothing but try to move as soon as possible. Sadly it's the one thing where I'm still powerless and together with my depressing financial situation responsible for most of the stress, crying and suicidal thoughts I'm still experiencing. It tastes like failure that I'm poor, jobless, without income and technically homeless while stuck in a situation which makes me feel unhappy as my financial situation ever worsens.

It makes me wonder how the hell I'm supposed to get out of this nightmare.


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