When My Body Was 16

Duck Dive

When my body was 16 for real I was good at looking innocent.

I’d widen my big brown eyes and get a little pout.

Girly expressions look good on guys that age, but not too much.

An’ sometimes innocence is sexier than looks.

I knew this one woman; she taught me the ropes.

She said she was my mom, but I never believed her.

She said, “beat off Bobby so’s you don’t fidget when men touch you!”

I ain’t never got used to bein’ touched and I don’t think not beatin’ off was why.

That was the Summer of 1969 when all the kids giggled when they said the date.

That was when I met my best friend, Carl, down by Colonial Lake.

It was a hot, muggy July day in 1969 an’ all the fish in the lake died.

Carl was blowin’ up the fish with cherry bombs.

I laughed an’ said hi an asked him where he got the black eye.

He said he got in a fight that morning at his school and decide to cut out.

I told him I almost got shot the night before ’cause I really did.

He knew the projects where I lived so he knew it was true.

“You almost got shot?” I could see I had his respect. “What did you do?”

“Scream.” I answered. Then we laughed an’ blew up some more fish and became best friends.

Carl was straight, but that July day we fell in love.



46 thoughts on “When My Body Was 16

  1. I have rarely seen such charming and disarming honesty. It is a very rare and precious gift that you still have the innocence (in a good way!) of a child. The only people in whom I have seen having this degree of straight forward honesty are transgender kids. You are very special Robert. I have felt it from the first time I laid eyes on one of your posts.

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    1. Thank you Tobe. I’m not transgender although many people think I am. The female alternate is a survival strategy. Quite simply my Mother was not as angry with females as she was with makes. Therefore, in my child’s mind, I believed that if I became female she would love me and stop hurting me. To some extent I was right. Between four and seven there was less battering and my Mother seemed to like me better. When I started school and whole new set of problems arose because the rest of the world saw an effeminate little boy and pounced on him. It is horrible that adults still feel free to torment children who don’t conform to gender roles….

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      1. Yes but this is not what I meant to say. If one day uo get to see a documentary about young transgender kids, kids who do it totally volumtarily and would prefer to die than to live the way they were born. It seems shocking and very unatural but when you see and hear those kidz, they are so innocwnt charming and disarming that it just seems totally natural and the right thing to do… I know this sounds vewry unorthodox… I shoudl have picked another exemple maybe but if one day you have a chance to see a doc on transgender kidz you will see I was making you a nice c ompliment :))

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      2. I used to work with Transgender people when I worked in mental health. I know that gender, as with many human qualities is fluid in all of us. I do understand that you were giving me a compliment…I’m aware of the fact that many people who only relate to me online are sometimes confused regarding my gender. Children are gender less and it may be that the kids are childlike because they have not yet completed a task that most children accomplish fairly early; that’s the task of knowing that they are either a girl or a boy. I often say that makes are an evolutionary afterthought. That’s why it is so much easier to turn a make body into a female body.

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      3. I so totally agree!!! It’s funny cuz very shortly I wrote that, I was talking to some people about transgender kids and they were all outraged by it!! I tried to make them understand, I used the very same argument you just used anout the fact that kids are genre less so it seems alot more natural but they still were just totally , and I mean totally, outraged by all this, and I ended up saying, if you have a chance just watch one documentary about it… We definitely are on the same page. BTW I never even asked myself questions abut your gender or sexual orientation before you brought the subject and even then TBH, it is kind of irrelevant to me when we are discussing ideas and I think it is one of the reason I love to excahnge ideas on the internet because some barriers disappear and only the idea and philsophy remains… Oh yes I almost forgot… Seeing the people so outraged by it and b the fact that parents were helping thier kids along the process and giving them hormones when puberty comes is why I thought it might be a good idea to make sure you took it as a compliment lol!!!! I realised some people could have taken it VERY differently!! I’m glad you got me right… My English isn’t perfect so sometimes I am misunderstood as well as sometimes I misunderstand what between the lines… For exemple I thought DID was a real disease at first… It took me awhile to figure out precisly what you meant. Brilliant post btw… Really brilliant..Alike I already told you.

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      4. DID is a real disease…as is schizophrenia.

        Most people live under the illusion that reality is fixed.

        It isn’t. It is a function of the mind.

        Someone who holds a dogmatic view of sexuality and gender is probably frightened of life.

        Dogma is like a tranquilizer for the intellectually skittish.

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      5. OOOhh.. I see.. I understand now… At first I thought it was a real disease than I thought that maybe it was a figure of speech. Now you truly see that English is a second langage to me…Certain things are between the lines (or not) and it is harder to detect if English is not your first lanagae. My Apologies. I was given a diagnosis of schizophrenia…I think DID is part of schizophrenia because I felt there was no me. It was as if everyone was a part of me and I was part of everyone. My heart and soul that keeps in place the different traits of character, my tastes and opinions just wasn’t there to hold my very own personality together. That was definitely a part of what I was living. So my friend I understand you totally..but correct me if I misunderstood… My words to describe are a little different. Of course there was more to it than just this part for me. I also had the feeling I had a ”third eye” but no filter, so I was ”engulfed” in everyone’s emotions. I could see and feel everything that was around me. I was seing symbols that were in accordance with certain constant codes I had with numbers, letters, names ans colors. God I wish we could talk face top face!!! I feel I have so much I want to talk to you about!!! I was in heavy crisis for almost a year and had more than 3 ”relapses” meaning I was ok and then relapsed. That is the difference between a crisis and being considered a schizo-paranoid for life which should have been my case. It all started in Nicaragua, 2 month before the huge catactlism that wiped out almso 1/3 of this very small contry, full of volcanoes.. I spent almost 2 years there and I started loosing it, as did some canadians that were there before me. doing humanitary help to help reconstruct the country after the civil war between the ”Contra War” . People thought I was american… To most of them Montreal was a place in the USA and Canada was a State… So yeah, it was hard. They just put me in a plane on the way back with 3 or 4 changing of planes and I was arrested in the aeroport by the FBI and put in a Asylum. I was treated and put back in a plane to Canada and they took away my medication when I arrived at the association I was working for in Canada. Erm.. I relapsed and went like a homeless around Montreal, sleeping on the couch of my friends and many didn’t even noticed I was not in my right mind… My mother and step father were doing everything they could to put me in a hospital but they couldn’t do it without my agreement. I finally surrendered and my mum cried the frist day she realised I was back. She noticed I was back cuz she wanted me to put some shoes and I didn,t want those, I wanted another pair…. She realised I was back and cried cuz she thought she would never see me back again… Never had any relapse since them even though I am categorised as shizo-paranoid. So one could say I am some kind of miracle… I justwant you to know how much I understand what you are going through…Didn’t mean to pull the blanket… Sorry if it seems I did. Do you feel you are on the way to be cured or is it a disease you will have to cope with all your life or do you feel you are in control 100%?? I’m so glad to finally meet someone who fully understands the concept of living under multiple realies!! It never happened to me before and I now feel maybe I was more DID than schizo-paranoid… I would so like this conversation to go on forever lol!!! I so can’t believe you totally get me!! And I think I totally get you now!! I should have read more carefuly but like I said my English sometimes makes it hard to make the difference between a person recounting a fact and someone doing a figure of speech… Do you see how I could see it as a figure of speech?? LOL cuz it is kind of interesting if you see it that way too.. . TBH i think you are just able to perceive more stuff than ”normal” people do.. But I wouldn,t want you to see this as an encouragment in yor illness.. It’s just, to me.. a way to see things from a different angle..(another one) …A dream within a dream kinda thing… exxcept they are separate realities that intersect and the intersection is..well..YOU! To me it is totally sane to see things that way. My God I must have DID too!! LOL!! ITS CONTAGIOUS!! LMAO!! It is funny to me cuz when I was at the worst of one of my severe ”episodes” I thought I couldn’t talk about what was happening and what I was seeing cuz people would be caught the same way I was in this inextriguable ”game” and I wouldn,t want this for my worst ennemies and in fact when Italked about stuff to people they saw I was right about some stuff they were thinking and seeing and it was veryscary to them… They would promptly make out an excuse to disapear from my sight and I felt I was just punished fro divulguing ”the game” and I had no right..It was like someone screaming…REF!!!! And I was punished by seeing this person excluded…. I so couldn’t explain myself lol!! If I didn’t say anything I was like everyone else…

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      6. Tobe, you’re describing something that sounds like a manic high. I certainly can’t diagnose you and it’s not my place to diagnose you…But what you are describing is not dissociative identity disorder.

        My illness is marked by memory loss and alternate personalities that become dominant — for instance, my memory ends with chat I had at 1 yesterday and doesn’t begin again until this morning.

        When I woke up to look at my email I began to respond to Facebook prompts and stumbled on a post made by one of my alternates at about 2am this morning. I have no clear memories of writing this post.

        My symptoms are responses to ‘triggers’ which is a trauma reaction.

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      7. OK. I just felt I had a little DID in my psychosis and it wasn,t just a manic episode. I was hearing voices and having hallucinations. Anyways. Let’s say I’m wrong. It’s fine by me. Sorry to have confused those 2 very diffferent illnesses.

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      1. Nah, she has her head up her ass. That’s the troll I was going to write a post using her comments as a jumping-off point. But in retrospect I think that would be putting too much energy into her fucked-up-ness. I’ll just let it stand. Whoever sees it will get the message, just as you did 🙂

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      1. There is a precedent for intercourse between slaves and their owners. There is even speculation that Moses was a product of intercourse between a member of the royal house and a Jewish slave.


      2. Nah. He was the son of Yocheved and Levi. Clearly stated in the Chumash. He was born during the time that Pharaoh decreed that all Jewish boys be killed, and the girls kept alive (he clearly knew nothing about Jewish laws of descendence). Yocheved, who was a midwife herself, nursed him for three months, and then he got too big to hide, so she put him in a cradle of rushes and set him in the reedy border of the Nile. Miriam, his sister, kept an eye on him “to see what would happen.” Pharaoh’s daughter went down to bathe with her women, and they heard the baby crying. They took him out and showed him to the princess, who named him Moshe, which is Egyptian for “pulled out of the water.” They tried to get him to nurse from an Egyptian wet nurse, but he would not take the milk of an Egyptian into his body (this is now coming from Oral Tradition), so Miriam piped up and said she knew of a Hebrew woman who had just lost her baby boy (her mother Yocheved), so Pharaoh’s daughter gave little Moshe back to his mommy for another nine months, then took him into the palace and raised him as her own child.

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