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Trans Sister Radio is a podcast that explores the real-life stories of two trans women, Athena and Erin. Every week, they give advice based on their experiences and cover topics and questions they see frequently asked by new and questioning trans folk. Athena came out as trans back in December ofand has been going through transition ever since. She's been full-time since March of She loves video games, board games, Magic: the Gathering, and way You can also find Athena in Still Inspired By.

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I have always been a soccer player, and I know now that I will forever remain a soccer player. My issues began when, as a junior in high school, I started to secretly seek out any source of over-the-counter and black-market swap-meet medication I could find to treat my gender dysphoria. Off the field, I became a target for some of the boys and girls at school. It was normal day-to-day life to be a target of harassment and threats of violence. Soccer became my escape. Unfortunately, the medications began to affect my ability to develop muscle and compete at the same level as my male teammates, and it began to show in my performance on the field.

This transgender ncaa goalie has competed the last two years and is now coming out

By my senior year in high school, I was a pound, 5-foot-8 goalkeeper. Despite soccer being my escape, it also presented struggles. After being bullied and assaulted by a new addition to the team after one particular soccer practice, I decided to switch high schools. That stopped the bullying. I was the new kid at school.

Nobody knew me at my new school, and I tried my hardest to fit in with the few friends I made. I was relegated to the junior varsity team. So for that last year in high school I sucked it up and played on the boys junior varsity team. When I graduated high school and played my final boys high school soccer game, I found every photograph, every old jersey, every medal, trophy, and award I had ever received as an athlete I never wanted to hear about the sport of soccer -- or any other sport for that matter -- ever again.

It gave me a place to fit in and forget about the fact that I live in a world that hates my existence.

The day I purged every bit of soccer and my history with the sport, I purged a part of my self — a part of me that I thought I would never get back. When I graduated from high school, I skipped college. I had no ambition. I got a boring job working at an insurance company and then behind a computer in IT to help pay for my transition and tried to fit in the best that I could.

I also met a partner who loved and supported me. My life changed in the spring of when my partner convinced me that I should go to school.

They agreed: I needed to make a change in the direction of my life. As a transwoman, I was expected to be within normal female hormone level ranges for at least a year.

A letter to the women of athena from a former male (now transwoman) ceo

I had been transitioned for a much longer time than one year by the time the handbook was released. Perhaps I would have not lost all motivation and hope to continue my education after having my dream of playing college soccer ripped from my heart. The team had a poor record and the school had recently hired a completely new coaching staff.

I had nothing to lose by trying out. I ed coach Greg Venger, who replied with a date for me to try out for the team. I was so nervous as I approached the stadium on the first day of tryouts. Would they notice right away and treat me differently? Would the coach give me a fair chance to try out? Would the other girls on the team be nice to me? I walked through the stadium gates and approached the coach.

I introduced myself to the players on the team, and everyone was so welcoming and happy to have me there. I put on my cleats and shin guards and got to work warming up with the rest of the team. I felt like I was at home again out there on the field with goalie gloves on my hands. The two days of tryouts came and went by fast. At the end of the second day the coach asked to talk to me after practice.

ing the team brought new concerns.

For one, I was out of shape. The coaches told me not to worry about it and they would help me get back into playing shape. But the strangest thing happened: It never did. So I never said anything. Two years came and went fast and, before I knew it, my two years of eligibility at the community college level were coming to an end. During my final year of playing at Los Angeles Valley College, I began to think about what would come after it.

I had put in so much work getting into playing shape and training on my own.

Helen Carroll, from the National Center for Lesbian Rightshelped see to it that I had opportunities beyond community college. I looked into transferring to play at a higher level. With the help of an assistant coach and private goalkeeper trainer, I put together some video of me playing and reached out to some schools. I had to make some tough decisions. When the opportunity came up for an official visit to meet the team at the Univ. As soon as I arrived on the U. Santa Cruz campus I had this feeling in my stomach that told me this place was right for me. I knew this was going to be my new home before I knew it was going to be my new home.

I got to the beautiful UCSC soccer field that rests on a cliff overlooking the Monterey Bay where the team was holding a camp. By the end of the camp, everyone made me feel so genuinely welcome. This was where I had to be. I let coach Emily Scheese know how much I was interested in playing for her and submitted my intent to register at U.

Santa Cruz. It was my new home. The first day that I reported to summer athlete housing, I went straight to Cliff Dochterman, the athletic director, and informed him of my trans-status and intent to play. I also submitted to him the necessary medical documentation as required by the NCAA.

I wanted to retain my privacy in regards to being transgender, and we agreed to keep the information between only people who needed to know. Coach Scheese was one of those few people. When the athletic director told my coach, her only questions were how she could be most supportive of me.

Coach Scheese decided that she would respect my privacy and left any discussion of my status as a transgender athlete up to me. I decided that focusing on soccer was best for the team as a whole.

At times I did avoid certain situations that made me uncomfortable, such as the required showers after games before long road trips. Washing in the sink as teammates took to the showers became a normal way of life for me. It separated me from the team in those moments, but it was what I had to do. I was thankful for those times when we had private shower stalls.

Then I could do what I needed to do in my own privacy -- It was always a welcome opportunity. The topic of me being transgender never came up. I played for U. Santa Cruz for two years and no one ever asked.

Being out: trans athlete athena del rosario hopes to be an olympian

At the end of this school year, I decided it was time to share my gender identity with them. I was scared. Despite the fear, something inside me also knew that this would never happen.