The LGBTQ community has been gaining visibility in recent years, even in Malaysia. We surely have friends or at least acquaintances who are part of this group. However, not many are willing to share their stories as they are terrified of the consequences.
Earlier this month, a transgender Chinese bravely shared her story of growing up in Malaysia. Netizens praised her courage for embracing her identity and living her life as she wants to.
On 3rd September, Bigo Live released a video interview with Jenny MS, a transgender Chinese. Jenny shared that she was born a male, however, she knew she wanted to be a girl when she was in primary school. “I felt shy when I saw boys, I liked Sailor Moon and its characters’ hairstyles, makeup, pedicure, manicure and body,” she shared. “I wanted to be like them and I started to be conscious of it.” She eventually realised she had the “soul of a female”. “The only differences are my appearance and my lower body,” she said.
Her realisation did not make things easy for her during secondary school. “Some of my male classmates could not accept me and bullied me,” Jenny stated. “They could not understand why I would want to be a female when I am a male.” Jenny shared that they would often hit and bully her in front of other girls. “They knew I didn’t like to get in trouble, so they treated this as my weakness and continued to bully me,” she said.
However, not everyone was opposed to her gender identity. “My biggest comfort was that my female and male friends could accept me as I was,” she shared. “This gave me the courage to pursue my dreams and (be) brave enough to be myself.” As soon as she had completed Form 3, Jenny dropped out of school to start working. She decided to join the beauty industry which she had been interested in since she was a child. “I like this industry very much as I can dress up and be myself,” she said.
Her parents initially weren’t happy about her decision to join the beauty industry. They thought she was changing herself completely. Jenny compromised with her parents and was finally allowed to do as she wished. She started growing her hair out and switched from gender neutral clothes to more feminine ones. She also started participating in beauty pageants and performances. “The kind of life I really wanted had finally begun,” she said happily. Her parents too started accepting her as she was and continued to love her.
Alongside her job as a makeup artist and hair stylist, she began live streaming. Jenny shares her makeup tips and sings on her streams in Bigo Live. As she gradually gained more viewers, she got more comfortable with live streaming. Comfortable enough to answer a somewhat invasive question from an audience about a scar on her neck. “I generously admitted that I am a transgender person,” she recalled. “The audience was willing to accept me and even sent me gifts.” Their acceptance surprised and encouraged her to be more honest about her identity.
Jenny hopes more people will be brave to live their truth. “Everyone is unique,” she said. “(What’s more important) is that you should take charge of your own life. Live the best out of your life and face yourself bravely.”
The video has since gained over 118,000 views. Her bravery to share her story may become encouragement for others to do the same.
Check out her interview here: