Today brigitte.de, a german women´s online magazine published a video and article about me.
Here is the translation of the film: (might be not the best english….perhaps later I can improve it)
“When I was 22, hair started to grow on my chin. It was after giving birth to my son and from then on I started plucking these hairs but more and more grew, so that one day I found myself spending half an hour every day, plucking out the hair on my chin. The chin was always red and inflammed, was swollen and brown colored. The result were scars on my chin. I don´t quite remember why, but one day I went to an ILP Institute and had three treatments done. ILP is a kind of laser treatment. After each treatment my chin was red, inflammed and swollen….the effect was to have less hair for about one year, but then they all came back. Then I visited a workshop, which changed it all. One part of the workshop was about accepting the own body as it is. And the moment I saw myself in the mirror, I realized that the beard has to be there. It is part of my nature and belongs to me so why should I fight against it?
In the beginning I was scared that my friends would not like me anymore. But it wasn´t like this. I feel it´s important for me to do this at the moment: I feel stronger because of it. My friend Ute said that I do not make the impression anymore, that my eyes ask for approval and appreciation. This was interesting to hear. For me, the beard is a symbol of freedom, individualism, beeing myself and letting things be the way they are. I want to be in peace with my facial hair and not to fight against the outer appearance of the body. This also means to be in peace with the inside, which reflects on the outside.
(2.33Min) There are days when I feel strong and then I enjoy to provoke the people. There are days when I wake up and feel somehow weak. Perhaps I feel sad or hurt because someone said something to me. Perhaps some hope was not fulfilled and then I feel down and then it is difficult to deal with the reactions.(2.58)
I did not tell it my mother, as she has a different view about life, than me. If I told her now about my beard, I am scared that she would react in an extreme way, that would touch me and make me feel uncertain. – It is perhaps to be compared like a pregnancy. You would protect the unborn child.
(3.29) All my life it was a fight between what mum and dad wanted and to make them happy and to satisfy them. They told me to study, so I did. Become a teacher, and I did. I wanted to do something else. I wanted to become a carpenter, or to be an actor. But I did what they wanted because I wanted them to be happy. And this is total nonsens in the end. ‘(3.57)
In my past, my parents liked to watch me, especially my father. He liked to stare at me and play his games that I did not like and that bothered me. So from this I think I have an unrealistic fear, when I use the metro. I project then on the other people, – oh they look at me something is wrong with me. I am not ok. (4.19)
And now I give them a reason – now I am not ok – now there is really something different in the way I look. And now I can train to deal with this. They are looking at me and what happens?! I do not fall down, they don´t bite me or scream at me. They are just looking, so what! Let them have a look.
To learn to feel well with myself, even when they are looking. Most of the times people do not dare to talk to me about the beard. They are looking and looking away. But the kids they have no fear and ask me: Why do you have a beard? Why don´t you take it off? There is a creme you can use, my mami is shaving and so on …The kids are very open and sometimes people are open too, but it takes quite a while.
It happens that someone talks about half an hour with me about something and then at the end, when the person is already standing in the door, they ask me why do you have a bear?! Are you taking hormons, do you want to be a man? They are afraid to tell me right in the face that it is difficult for them to deal with a woman with a beard.
Fifth minute until end:
I think some of the thoughts are about sexuality perhaps they think this is a person that is not normal, might be a hermaphrodite, something between gender. Then the fear about homosexuality that might be interpreted….and other thoughts that are difficult to deal with. (5.41)
In Irland people told me this would be a perfect goatee and other men would like to have such a beard. There was a young man in the hostel about 19 or 20 years old, who asked me: how is it with a beard? I told something and he answered, that he is a bit jealous, as he cannot have a beard and showed me the few hairs in his face. This was somehow sweet.”
End of the film.