It’s a colour I know all too well.

A colour I was drowned in as a child.

There would always be something pink about me.

My clips, my shoes, my tights.

Or even my shirt or my shorts or my dress.

Pink was always a part of me.

I like the colour pink.

When I got to the age where I could dress myself and choose my own clothes.

I began to stray from the colour.

But I could only get so far before someone (a relative or a friend) would reel me back in and put on the pink chains that held me at bay.

As my freedom of expression got bigger I began hovering around the boy’s section.

All the rugby shirts and hoodies and the football boots and baseball hats.

I could have them, under one condition:

They had to be in pink.

I began to grow self-conscious, by this age I knew I wasn’t a girl but I didn’t know what I was.

Something inside warned me not to speak up about my insecurities, somehow deep within my seven-year-old, I self-knew talk of my real gender was taboo.

So I kept quiet.

I wore the pink dresses with the frilly fringes and I kept pink clips in my long hair.

But no matter how much pink blush I layered my face in, I couldn’t cover up the fact I hated every part of myself.

Skip past the years of suppressing my true self in order to fit in to when I am 11.

I’ve finally come to terms with who I am but there’s a downside. I go to an all girl’s school now. I’ve gone from being addressed to as ‘pupil’ and ‘student’ to ‘young lady’.

I completely cut pink out from my life. The wallpaper, the bedsheets, the wardrobe.

It’s gone. I can’t tolerate it. Boys like blue and girls like pink.

‘I’m not a girl’ I remember telling myself, ‘I cannot like pink.’

I hate the colour pink.

But now, things have changed.

I’m 14 now, and as I write this my hair is cut short. I’m wearing a black and white football top and some sweats from the men’s section. Yet I as the words appear on the screen before me my feet sway back and forth. Being warmed by a pair of pink fluffy socks. Beside me a pink candle making the room smell of lilies and blossom.

I’ve learned that I don’t have to fit in with gender roles. I can be a boy and still like my fluffy socks no matter what colour they are. I can walk down the street in a pink t-shirt and not be a faggot.

I can be who I am and I can wear whatever I want.

And no matter what society will say, it will not make any less of the man I am.

I love the colour pink.

Sincerely,

Benji.

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