Challenges Faced by Transgender Yong Adults

Challenges Faced by Transgender Yong Adults

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Identity crisis is a common problem among young adults, especially transgender people who experience changes later in their lives. Gender dysphoria is phycological distress that results from an incongruence between an individual’s sex that is assigned at birth and one’s gender identity which they developed later in life. Young adults are at a stage in life that poses a major psychological problem in which a person fails to relate to either socially acceptable gender – male and female. While a person may be born female, and transform later in life to be a male, they may undergo psychological and hormonal changes that they previously not experienced. As a result, most transgender people are vulnerable to symptoms of depression and anxiety as they are not sure whether they will be fully adopted by society for what they have chosen to be and what they were previously. For this assignment, I will analyze the poem, “A letter to the girl I used to be” by Ethan Smith to help understand the challenges that young adults pass through especially those experiencing gender changes.

The text, “A letter to the girl I used to be,” highlights the story of a young man in his early 20’s narrating the changes and challenges that he faced when transforming from a female to a male. According to the poem, Ethan describes how it feels to be trapped inside the wrong body. He writes to a young girl, a female version of his younger self named Emily. Previously, he was a girl, but presently, he is a male. In the poem, Ethan goes back to the days when he was Emily, and here he experiences numerous challenges. For example, he states that every time she goes to watch baseball, a voice he no longer recognizes whispers “Ethan, do you remember? When you were gonna be the first girl in the major leagues-Seattle Mariners. Rally Cap.” By this, Ethan is referring to him as a young girl who reminds him of the time, he was young and wanted to be the first girl baseball league player. When Ethan was Emily, he wanted to be a baseball player, but maybe his ambitions have changed since transforming from a female to a male, and this is why he is conflicted about his past and present interests.


Ethan Smith. “A Letter to the Girl I Used to Be.” Retrieved from: