TransEthics: Are you ready for the interview?
Sofia Clark: First I want to say that This Book (The She Male Experiment: I’m Transgender) is dedicated to every person going through a transition in their lives. Especially to all those trapped in the wrong body, those fighting to find their true identity in this world. Even though my story is extreme and not representative of what you may be going through, your pain, our pain¸ is the same. Know that I’ve been there. I made it and you will to. Be strong and find your “inner Sofia”. I also need to acknowledge my mother, because without her love and support I would never be the person I am.
TE: How did your mother react when you came out as trans to her?
SC: My mother has been very supportive all her life. I still remember when I came out as a gay man to her. The way she looked at me, I will never forget. I knew there was something wrong with me, I just thought every gay man felt the same way. Until I finally discovered I have always been a woman trapped in the wrong body. Her reaction I can’t describe because the book will tell you everything about that moment. (What if she still does not know Sofía?)
TE: When did you discover that you were transgender?
SC: I always knew I was a girl growing up. I was always playing with girls, being feminine, and thinking like one. [I was] always imagining myself with long hair, wearing dresses, and all that girly stuff. I always knew.
TE: Why did you then decide to come out as a gay man to your mother rather than as a trans woman?
SC: I thought it was normal to be gay and feminine. I grew up in a small town where the subject of homosexuality was never spoken. To me it was a normal thing. When I came out to her, I did it because I was in love for the first time. I had my first love and I had to come out in order to be with him, and be who I wanted to be at that moment. And I was not ready to tell anyone about me feeling like a woman.
I did not know what a transexual or transgender woman was. Did not know anything about the subject or even know anyone who was. I figured it was just that felt that way. I associated with being gay.
TE: Did your feelings change about that when you first began to transition?
SC: I don’t think anyone who is transitioning could explain that. There is not a perfect way to explain how your feelings when you transition. Some may say it’s liberating, some say they felt free. I would have to say that I felt like I was alive for the first time. That I existed that I was noticeable to the world. My feelings were a bit confused as well. I’m was angry but happy at the same time. I was ashamed and proud at the same time. But one thing I could tell you is that I was me.
TE: How would you describe gender dysphoria to someone who has never experienced it?
SC: First, I’m a graduate nurse and I have experience working with mental health. I would let them know that trans people don’t have a mental illness, that they are just having a problem with their birth gender. That they are not alone. That many people don’t identify with their birth gender and that it’s totally normal. Most people call it “gender identity disorder.” But the mismatch between body and internal sense of gender is not a mental illness. Instead, what needs to be addressed are the stress, anxiety, and depression that go along with it.
TE: The title of your book, The She Male Experiment: I’m Transgender, has created controversy among trans women. One follower of mine tweeted: “…maybe, but the title means I won’t buy it.” Why did you choose what many consider a slur as the title?
SC: The slur is used mostly in porn industry, escort webpages, and others. This book is part of a story that I’m telling. A story that many people know about but dare not to speak about. When Sofía came to life she did it not in the most common way. She came to life as a shemale, what men wanted at that time. A chick with a dick. The word was part of Sofia’s story. She was an experiment to her self and others. It was the only way she could come to life and be known. I mean, look up the hashtag #SheMale on Twitter and all you see is beautiful trans women. I know the word or the tittle may offend some, but I could not write something else because it’s my story, not anyone else’s. I’m a transgender woman. I was born a man. To some people I’m just a shemale; to me I’m a woman. The She Male Experiment is part of who I am. I was my own experiment, and as much as I would like to say it differently it would not feel real. And I wanted this book to feel real. I think that if someone gets offended by the tittle it’s because she or he is insecure. I’m not here to educate about how to become a transgender woman or man, or how to label someone. I’m here telling a story that felt right to me. I’m not an (LGBT) activist. I’m telling a story the story of Sofía.
TE: How did you get into the Sex Industries?
SC: I have never been in the porn industry if that’s what you’re asking. I don’t think they will pay me enough to do porn. No offense, I love porn but I don’t see myself doing it. And that’s the sad part about all this. Most transgender women have to do porn in order to survive in this so-called society, or have to become escorts to be who they want to be. Becoming the woman you always dreamed of becoming could be very expensive for some. That’s when most decide to become the price and pay the price. This is the subject none wants to talk about. That’s why I wrote this book. Because I have been there. I know how it feels and I know how hard it is to let go.
TE: Your twitter bio states that you’re an Adult Entertainer. Would you elaborate?
SC: Exactly. To become an adult entertainer you don’t have to make a movie or a sex scene. I would have to tell the readers to read to book to get the answer to this question. This is a very personal chapter on [this] and well explained in the book. I don’t want to give this very personal moment away.
TE: How do you respond to people who claim that sex work is “unethical”?
SC: Sex work is the oldest profession known. Unethical is not surviving and giving up. I think that people who judge have no right to do so. People do with their body what they feel it’s best. I’m no one to judge what people think. I think that answers your question.
TE: You mentioned on Twitter that this is the first of three books you’re writing. Do you have titles for the next two books yet?
SC: It’s part of my transition and story. When your follower thought negative about the tittle it is because she has not read the book and would not understand the meaning of the first book. Yes the titles are set and the second book is almost done, but first I want to focus on this one. The story of Sofía Clark could not be told in one book. It’s like when someone is transitioning: it’s baby steps one step at a time.
TE: Just one last question: Do you have any advice on how a trans woman could pitch her book to a publisher?
SC: The only way to pitch anything you believe in is by knocking on doors and never giving up. By believing in your work and making others fall in love with it.
TE: Thank you for taking time out to speak with us tonight.
SC: I loved every minute of it. I love the way you ask questions, so real and so professional. Thank you. I see a bright future.
TE: (blushes brightly)