by Khane Taylor
My dad is Australian, and my mom Filipino. They were still together when I was young, but after a while they lived in separate houses. I lived with my mom, with her new husband that my dad didn't know about. She had a child with her new husband, who was also with us.
Even though we were living in a separate house, my dad was still supporting us. (He didn't know that he was also supporting my mom's new guy.) He was always a good father to me, even if we were not together. He always made sure that we always had the things that we needed.
I can say that my stepfather was so lucky, because he didn't need to work hard to provide our needs, because my father was doing it already. If he was lucky, I was not. My stepfather hurt me physically, whenever he was drunk and sometimes even if not.
My stepfather was always drinking. Sometimes he was also playing cards or gambling. My mom tolerated him, even though she could see that my stepfather was hurting me. He used different things to hurt me – he used sticks, wood, belts, sometimes the metal of his belt, and other things. One time he hurt me so bad that it made a lot of marks all over my body, and the neighbors were the ones who took care of me, because they saw the marks on my body. Also, one thing that he did to me that I can't forget, was, one time when he was so mad at me, he lifted me on the top of the bed and threw me to the floor. I was so shocked that time, I couldn't cry, I couldn't speak, and I couldn't even move. It was really hard for me to breath, until mom arrived; when she opened the door, she saw me on the floor, and she was shocked and she grabbed me right away, she cried and she was shouting at my stepfather, until I could breathe finally. I was crying while my mom was hugging me.
Every time I remember those things, I cry, even up to this moment (I'm really crying now). I was just around five or six years old at the time that I experienced all of those things. My dad didn't have any idea of those things that were happening to me. What could I do? I was just too young, I couldn't even talk to my dad about it because I couldn't speak English well yet.
There's still a lot of things that I experienced from my mom and my stepfather that I can't remember anymore.
Finally, my grandmother found out about it. She came all the way from Samar (our province) to Manila. She brought me and my two siblings back to Samar.
My grandmother has taken care of me since then until now. She supports me, loves me, and accepts me, even though she found out that I'm a transgender. She never lets me feel that I am different. Instead, she always makes me feel that I am special.
Despite what I have experienced in my past, I can still say that I am lucky, because I have wonderful people around me, especially my family, who are always there for me, to support, respect, accept, and love me for who and what I am.