Digital Transgender Archive

Interview with Rebecca Kling

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Rebecca Kling identifies as a white woman and sometimes as a trans woman. She was assigned male at birth. She grew up on the north side of Chicago, Illinois in the 1990s and has an older brother. She experienced bullying for being different in fourth and fifth grade. Her parents decided to move her to a private school. She always knew being a boy was wrong and uncomfortable for her, but it took her longer to figure out what would be right for her. She didn’t have any idea about trans identity at the time until late adolescence when she began reading about trans identity online. It was hard for her to identify with others online, however, since she mainly encountered white trans women hating their body and genitalia, which wasn’t part of Kling’s own experiences. She experienced dysphoria but not to the point of hating her body. Kling began to describe herself as trans as early as 15 or 16 but it wasn’t until her early 20s that she began transitioning by going to counseling and starting hormones. She also had laser hair removal and gender reassignment surgery. Her attractions lie mostly with women or femme-presenting folks. Since transitioning she also had sexual experiences with men. She is a storyteller and performer. It took some time for her parents to get onboard with her transition, but they now have strong relationships. She went to college at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. She’s experienced street harassment and people using slurs against her. She was also fired from a teaching job in 2010 for being trans. She pursued legal action from the EEOC, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, but they couldn’t produce evidence, so the case was dropped. She’s active in trans advocacy and has been involved with Creating Change. She also works with Camp Aranu’tiq, a camp for trans and gender-variant youth. She also worked with About Face Theatre in Chicago and is part of the board with the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance, which is an organization working for LGBT youth safety, particularly in schools.

Item Information:

Identifier
j098zb306
Collection
Audio and Video Clips and Transcripts
Institution
Jean-Nickolaus Tretter Collection, University of Minnesota
Creator(s)
Kling, Rebecca
Contributor(s)
Jenkins, Andrea
Publisher
University of Minnesota Minneapolis Libraries
Date Created
Jan. 25, 2016
Genre
Oral Histories
Transcriptions
Subject(s)
Caitlyn Jenner
Creating Change
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Philadelphia Trans Health Conference
Places
Pennsylvania > Bucks County > Borough of New Hope > New Hope
Illinois > Cook County > Evanston Township > Evanston
Topic(s)
Acceptance
Bullying
Coming out
Dating
Discrimination
Employment discrimination
Gender dysphoria
Gender realignment surgery
Hair--Removal
Hormones
Mental health
Partners (LGBTQ)
Passing (gender)
Schools
Self-acceptance
Sexual orientation
Surgery
Theatre
Therapies
Transgender identity
Resource Type
Moving image
Text
Language
English
Related URL
https://umedia.lib.umn.edu/
Rights
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