Dan Nicholas is a 46 year old trans man born in Malden, MA and raised in New Hampshire until the age of 16, when he graduated from high school and moved back to Massachusetts.
Dan describes himself as a nerd, someone who likes to play games, spend time with his cats and with his partner. He’s an accountant, does a lot of financial reporting and works on research.
Growing up in a small town (and I mean like 1500 people kind of small) in New Hampshire, where homosexuality was still treated like an urban and non acceptable problem, Dan didn’t consider himself anything but heterosexual until he was in college. His acknowledge about sexuality came early though, around the age of 5 or 6, but not regarding being attracted to boys or girls. That came later in grade school when he was exposed to the idea of homophobia by his classmates. At home, he was surrounded by queer people from his parents’ circle, so he learned early in life that the prejudice against the LGBTQIA+ community was not okay.
Dan came out as bisexual a few weeks after he had entered college. About four years later, he started flirting with the idea of his gender identity, but ended up not taking the jump until he was 25.
Even though this happened 21 years ago, when things were even harder for LGBTQIA+ people and especially transgender people, for Dan it was remarkably smooth to navigate through his transition, and he mainly attributes that to his background as someone who had a college degree and was already stablished with housing and a job position.
The university where Dan has worked throughout this whole process has also been supportive most of the time. And it’s also where he first heard of the Stonewall Sports, a project that brought an extra dose of fun and community to his life. Last spring, Dan joined the kickball league and found in his team a wonderful source of support and also a way of connecting with more queer people.
Looking at the plurality of the LGBTQIA+ community and having a sense of the multiple places where other trans folks speak from, Dan believes our main focus should be on racial justice. Most of the pride organizations that have been active for 20, 30, 40 years are still largely led by white middle or upper class people, whereas people who have been historically marginalized - in and out of the movement - should have their voices and their demands centered.
Along with that, Dan finds it crucial and urgent that our community and society in general gather around protecting and supporting trans youth, primarily trans youth of color, who are in a really vulnerable spot right now, often struggling to find affirming healthcare and housing. He points out that he’s trying to leverage how lucky he’s been to make things better moving forward, despite the terrifying point in human history we are currently living in.