Inspired by the first Norwegian king, Harald Fairhair, and provoked by the authorities who deny me the right of bodily autonomy, I started to let my beard grow on the first of June 2011.
I am a Norwegian transman and author. I changed my name officially to Tarald in 2006, and have lived in a male gender role since then. My body was originally female, but has changed due testosterone supplements since 2008. The Norwegian gender clinic, a monopoly, refused to treat my transsexualism, after keeping me under evaluation for two years. There is no posibility of second opinion.This means that I have to pay for all of my treatment and that it is hard to find doctors and surgeons who have the courage to treat me. I am not rich and can not afford to travel abroad for gender reassignment surgery. In 2010 I was fortunately able to pay for a mastectomy. Because I still have my ovaries, I was unable to change my legal gender, until the new law came i 2016.
One would think that gaining autonomy over my own body would take less than the ten years it took Harald Fairhair to gain autonomy over Norway. It took 5 years from this project was started to the law of legal gender change passed in june 2016. I asked supportes to admitt a picture of them with a beard. You can see all of them here.
I am determined to let my beard grow until I get my ovaries removed or get my legal gender changed, may it take two or fourty years. I want to use my beard as a statement. It is a beard of protest. It is a symbol of the discrimination transgender people face, and our fight for basic human rights.
Although this is a private project, I believe that the personal is political, and I know that I am not the only one in this situation. I just happen to have more resources than most. What happens to my ovaries will probably have consequences for other trans people as well.
I ended this project when the legal gender law came into effect and I changed my gender. I still have my ovaries, and hope to get rid of them at some point, but they no longer influence my passport. My legal gender is now male, and I don’t think I need the beard as a gender marker any more. I may regrow some kind of beard in the future, but then for purely aesthetic reasons.
I’d like to thank all my supporters from around the world: Thank you!