Rough waters

I don’t know if being a victim is harder or watching someone else you care for be abused and being just as powerless to stop it as you were your own abuse. Neither is a great situation by any means, but I’m leaning on the latter of the two. As a healer type I would rather bare it all than watch someone else let alone someone I care about be abuse, broken, degraded, and disregarded.

I think what hurts the most is that everything I have done to protect myself and mine and have taken the time to learn is disregarded. Being treated like I dont know what I am talking about. Told that I’m being irrational or taking things out of context… All of those things just make everything worse.


Dsyphoria or Demon

Before we even begin: I’m not a medically trained professional, nor am I a licensed therapist. Today I’m all curled up in my duvet cover because I haven’t been able to sleep in two days, and maybe if I were a doctor I’d find the little parts of me that aren’t working and fix them so I could get out of bed.


I’m just a half grown kid with a binder and a lot of pronouns, and the world seems like a whole lotta sharp edges right now.

If you’ve never had body dysphoria, let me explain a little bit about how it makes me feel and why I have it. Body dysphoria the incongruity between what the brain expects the body to be versus how the body is actually configured. It feels like the worst-fitting outfit you’ve ever put together, but you can never take it off. Or sometimes it’s more like a pebble in your shoe, or a belt that digs into your side, or a tiny thing that is just noticeable enough to throw your day off. Some days I wake up, and it’s just there. Some days it’s because I tried to fit my not-so-masculine body into my masculine clothes, and the parts that didn’t fit made me want to scream and disappear and puke up all my guts at the same time. It can grow into a scary place where I don’t know if my body belongs to me, and I feel like I’ve been detached from something essential and am about to wash out to sea. Maybe a picture makes me hate and fear the body I don’t have because it’s not the body I wish I had. Perhaps I think that the someone I desire won’t desire me because I don’t look like all the handsome cisgendered men they probably grew up loving. Maybe it doesn’t make sense why I feel these things, but I still feel them, and they still hurt, darn it.

Early in my process, I was confused about who I was, and I didn’t think that I was trans “enough” because I couldn’t relate to the narratives I’d heard involving extreme cases of body dysphoria. I didn’t know that manifestations of body dysphoria were unique to each individual, that there are many different ways and degrees that people experience dysphoria (and for some, not at all), and I especially didn’t realize that I’d been feeling body dysphoria my entire post-adolescent life. It was such a constant part of my existence that I couldn’t dissect out the dysphoric feelings and recognize them.
It wasn’t until I compared notes with an articulate trans man who was willing to speak about his body dysphoria that I could understand, identify and name some of my own discomforts. I believe that’s one of the real benefits of these types of narratives — helping people understand themselves and their experiences, especially in context with others so they can know that they are not alone with these feelings.

Most of the time, my gender is cocky grins and loaded statements and the smell of bourbon. I’m usually wearing a binder. The strands of stuff that make me up decided to give me too much in the tits department, which has always been


. The same bits and pieces of DNA decided I’d get child-bearing hips, though, and then added a smack of irony by making me PCOS-rated infertile. Those hips have made me cry in menswear dressing rooms across the Northeast. And if you’ve read my earlier pieces, you know I’m a masculine-presenting survivor who has a soft spot for


and wrestles with all the complicated things that come with it.

On the days like today when I’m struggling under dysphoria and anxiety and a whole range of things that are tied to those words by tight red strings, it’s hard to remember that I am a person who deserves to take care of their fabulous self.

Dsyfunctional Relationships

When someone says that they are sick of being treated like a child, what comes to your mind? Recent events have caused me to think a lot about the meaning behind that statement. Such a familiar expression. What is being treated like a child like? What do we adults mean when we say that? Is it how a parent wipes your chin when you are eating a soft ice cream cone? Is it holding your hand when you cross the street? Is it being told to brush your teeth and get ready for bed? It would be pretty weird if our parents did that stuff when we were adults let alone anyone else. So when an adult says that they are sick of being treated like a child, I get a whole different idea about what this statement means.

In my experience, when adults use this expression it means that a parent, relatives, spouse, partner, or friends are treating an adult using voice infliction and innuendo, parents, relatives, a spouse, a partner, or even friends can make adult children feel like we are not capable or too stupid to make our own decisions.

Basically still having the mind of a child.

Consider some of the following statements; these are meant to make you wonder about your thoughts and decisions. They are meant to make you question yourself.

  • You are not really going to do that, are you?
  • You don’t really believe that, do you?
  • You aren’t really thinking that are you?
  • You are not really going to wear that, are you?
  • What were you thinking when you bought that?
  • What were you thinking when you said that?
  • What were you thinking when you did that?
  • What were you thinking when you agreed to that?

The unspoken message is “are you nuts” or “you must be stupid”.

These questions are not designed to get you to think about what you did or said, they are meant to degrade and make you feel stupid. They are intended to make you question yourself. When we were children, we depended on our parents, relatives, and even friends to help us decide, to make good choices. This is what I think some of us mean when we say they are sick of being treated like a child.

Other questions are designed to control but even these still indicate a suggestion that you couldn’t possibly know what is best. Here are a few:

  • You aren’t going to go there, are you?
  • You aren’t really interested in them, are you?
  • You aren’t really reading that are you?
  • You aren’t really watching that are you?
  • Why would you want to do that?
  • Why would you want to go there?
  • Why would you want to wear that?
  • You aren’t going to eat that are you?”

I am talking about when someone thinks they are helping you with your diet or insinuating that you need to lose weight.

If our adult/child relationships were conducted like this when we were children, we become accustomed to this kind of innuendo and control. It becomes part of how we do relationships. It is so familiar that we don’t really think about it. We don’t realize how devaluing, toxic, and abusive that it is. It has become part of our belief system, our false definition of relationship, respect, and love.When we fight this without really understanding what we are fighting, is it any wonder why we end up struggling with depression and other mental health issues?

Infantilizing is another form of control. Talking down to you, interacting with others in a way that is noticeably different from how they interact with you, treating you like you are incapable of doing anything right, not trusting your decisions, not trying to understand those harmful decisions they make also affect your life, etc.
To add one more…talking about you in a negative way to other relatives, friends, or people in general, and those people believing what is said.

Once, when I had moved back home after a failed marriage my Father told my sister that I wasn’t helping out with chores at home, which was a lie because I often did things without being asked. At this time I was around between 23-years-old and 25-years-old and my Mother’s health was declining, which is the only reason that I even moved back, to begin with. After that, my sister would call me on the phone and say things like: “are you making your bed every day? Are you doing the dishes? Are you sweeping the floor?”
It hurt and made me so angry because I was doing all of these things and more, yet I was being talked about and talked to like I was a naughty child who needed discipline. 

The mass majority of my family and old friends tend to treat me like this, and then they wonder why I don’t visit or call them anymore. It took me a long time, a handful of psychologists, attending a few workshops about recognizing the abuse of power and control in relationships as well as taking several psychology classes for myself that I began to recognize all the above as abusive tactics to control me. Abusers will point at minor issues going down trails leading nowhere designed to confuse the situation in order to discredit you along the way enabling them to be right and to defend their actions and position of power and entitlement.

During one of those workshops, something clicked. In that one moment, my entire life flashed in front of my eyes; I saw how my role in my family, marriage, and even some friendships was to be a servant; how I had been called a liar and the perpetrators had been protected and therefore proven to be more important than I was. I saw how I had been consistently disregarded and I felt the pain of continuously being unheard and discounted.

I was done with the ways that I had been regarded and disregarded. It was an accumulation of events that communicated to me that I was the last person “they” were concerned about and my courage to stop making excuses for them that eventually allowed me to have the moment that became “the final straw that broke the camels back.”

Remember that the final straw can often be what others would regard as a “little thing” and they will use that to discredit you by pointing out your sensitivities or calling your reaction ‘ridiculous’ or exaggerated; something that really helped me to sort all of that out was looking at the whole picture through the actual truth instead of looking at everything the way that they directed me to look at it. I became very aware that the way they wanted me to see things worked for them. They had no motivation to change because they had the relationship exactly the way they wanted it. I was the one that was struggling.

I finally decided that I was NOT going to be the “last person” in my own life.





This sucks the most

It still sucks in the end to know that some people you really care for dont really give a shit someone repeatedly hurt you in the worst way for years. Sure, I forgive em, but like have any of yall confronted him, put yourself in my shoes, knowing your supporting them but I havent seen some of yall in months?

I wouldnt care if yall were cool, if I knew that someone did that to you, i just wouldnt associate with them cause I know forgiveness doesnt equate to being okay with what happened or being fully healed.

Blink of Eternity


I know I have been away and not posted in awhile. I would apologize, but I’m honestly not sorry. I haven’t felt like talking much. I had too much to process. This decision was very difficult and still is. I’m not going away though but I’ll be switching all my social media around for my new adventures. I still need time but I’m getting there. Thank you all for reading and the support you show me. I appreciate all of you even when I’m too sick to be online. One day at a time. I’m still here.

I feel like an eternity has passed in the time that has passed since the last blog that I posted here. When in reality it hasn’t even been a year yet. Though, I guess for me it has been an eternity within the storm that has been my mind. It was during this time that I broke again. Any and all progress that I had made over the years was completely destroyed in what felt like a blink of an eye. The symptoms of my PTSD have become so intense that I started to spiral down again. Even though I am surviving I do not feel that I am improving at this point in time.

My hope is that by sharing my experiences with you and my healing journey, there is a better understanding in the world about what happens to people like me and what I go through. Maybe there will be some eyes opened, some minds broadened, and some empathy/understanding for other survivors. I hope that the survivors that read my blog can feel a sense of them not being alone or the only one that feels the way they do, they are not crazy, and someone cares about them. I care.

Please know that I am not speaking for all survivors and can only answer questions based on my own feelings and experiences. Each survivor is unique as well as their experience and how they are doing. Everyone handles things in their own time and that’s ok. I welcome respectful questions and am happy to answer them.


What hurts the most

This is what hurts the most. My children have fur, scales, and hearts of gold. Charlie has not left my side all night. She doesn’t want to sleep in her crate that she loves. No she knows full well that her home is broken and being torn apart. She knows that I am going to have to leave, and that she is going to be alone. She has never known anything other then her life with her brother and Cinder. I don’t want to leave her here but I know that I don’t have a choice.

I know he won’t take care of her. He only wants her as a possession. She will end up either locked in her crate or outside for hours on end. She will probably stop eating and become depressed, lethargic, and sick. He won’t notice he will just see her as being less rambunctious. That or he will leave spoiled food put for her to eat and poison her.

Vader my precious sweet baby boy kitty is also staying with him. His litter box will be filled with maggots, because he never cleans it. He probably won’t feed him regularly and he will waste away.

At least they will both have toilet water when their bowls run dry.

Cinder is going to stay with Dad because she loves him. Ty will be as well. Castiel is going with Ashley Mae and Alexis because he loves and protects her. Snappy is probably going to Dads or coming with me. We have had her 23 years and she still has a long life a head of her.

I’m looking to rehome my scale dragon babies Eros & Molly. It wouldn’t be fair to bring them with me for only another year. They are still young and they can live 20+ years as well.

My ratties are coming with me. Two of them are coming towards the end of their life. They don’t tend to live very long, but they give so much love with their little hearts.

This is what toxicity and abuse looks like. He never loved me I was simply a tool. He knew full well that I would protect them at all costs. Even if that cost is losing most of them so they can be safe. He knew that I wouldn’t leave them. They are why I came back. He knew it would shatter me, but that was all apart of the game that I didn’t even know I was in much less that was losing.

Even this is just one more piece of the puzzle. Simply another way to break my spirit and my heart.

Update & Annoucement

Good morning Everyone,

I’m sorry that I haven’t been in touch as much lately and more withdrawn. Nick Marino is not currently getting better. They discovered an unknown 3cm mass in his right kidney. We won’t know till the 12th if they will be doing a biopsy.

The 2 month before that was spent between MUSC IOP, Doctors, Specialist, Emergency Care, and the Emergency room. Usually screaming in gut-wrenching pain. I think he has dropped like 50lbs? In the last 2 months….

He is barely eating, drinking, in extreme pain, nauseated continuously, setting off migraines lasting days at best up to weeks, and has no motivation. There is an extremely high chance that it is cancer as he has lost 3 blood family members in 3 years to cancer. Let alone the 2 more not blood-related.

Him being in and out of the hospital has been really hard on me. As well as the likelihood that he may have cancer. The long nights have given me time to think though, and have decided that I want to talk about something serious, but my anxiety prevents me from being as articulate as I would like about this subject on the phone or in person. I know I’ve tried to have this conversation with a number of you over the years more times than I can count in the past.

So most of you will read this here, and I’m sure to share it with the rest which is fine. Due to the nature of the subject, I will not be proofing for grammar, mistakes, or spelling.

As you know It was a year a couple days ago that Momma died. It was also over a year ago that I came out to Momma the last night that she could talk when she was in the hospital. Nate slipped me in through the Drs corridor so that I could talk to her.

I was worried that she would die and that I would never know if she would ever accept and love me for me. So I went and sat down and talked to her for hours. I told her that no matter what anyone else may believe that first and foremost that I am a Christian. Also that I do not have to prove my relationship with God to anyone except him and me.

Though, I did explain that I am not an Evangelical Christian and do not agree with what a lot of the mainly southern Churches idolize. I’m a progressive Christian which the definition can is quickly looked up, but the most significant difference is that I believe LGBT people are gifts from God. Next, that the 6 verses in the Bible 3 old testament and 3 new testaments that reference gays have been ripped out of context. In reality, it is toward it being about gay rape, not healthy loving marriages.

So back on track, I revealed to her that I have been living two different lives and that I have felt like an underground Jewish person during the Holocaust I am terrified to be myself, but I am burnt out and exhausted from keeping up the facade. So I decided that today on October 11th, 2017 which is National Coming Out Day. I would be informing the family in its entirety who I am. This is already set in motion and short of the world ending before everyone wakes.

I have known since the furthest memory in my mind that I was born a boy, not a girl. I remember trying to tell everyone when I was little. You would just laugh for the longest time and shake your head and say to me that I’m just a tomboy or that it was a phase.

I hated wearing dresses, and I hated pink so much. The only reason I said it was my favorite color is that a boy at school said I looked like a boy and that if I were a boy, I would have a penis. He got angry when I disagreed, so he reached under my shirk grabbed by crotch gut checked me and then stomped my crotch repeatedly.

No one saw, and he was one of the assistant pastor’s kid. So I climbed to the top of the monkey bars and truth fell off backward. I landed on my tailbone and if you remember my ass and crotch were black and blue. Dr. Bird said it was because of bruising my tailbone. No one suspected anything else.

This moment is the first time I remember being suicidal and I don’t even think I was 8 yet….
After that, I tried to be girlie for a while or at least pretend to be. I still wouldn’t wear dresses, but I professed to love pink even though I genuinely hated it so much.

This patterned has continued my whole life. I spend week after week in church listening to how much God hated me from the first moment I can remember. A puppet show after a little boy wanted to wear a dress to church, but the pastor told him that was sinful. So then it turned into a Sunday school puppet show lesson. I remember getting so sick that I puked. I was maybe 5… It was at Dorchester Waylon.

Everything about my true authentic self-growing up has been deeply shamed, condemned, and degraded before I was even fully potty trained. So I began to hate myself. I started cutting and hurting myself before the 6th grade. I considered suicide on multiple occasions. I fought so hard to be the daughter, niece, sister, and aunt that I was supposed to be.

I tried to hide my deepest secret from everyone, but most of all myself. In the end, though I couldn’t ignore my soul forever.

I remember when RJ told me that he liked boys because I’m pretty sure we were in the 2nd grade. Gay this meant happy to us if we knew it at all. We were completely untouched by the evil of the world. I remember Kayla and me telling him not to tell Ashley because we knew she would tell. Well you know how that went he said it to her, she told Aunt Margret, and the rest is history.

Though the piece of the story your missing is that Kayla and me also “came out” out to him. He liked boys and wanted to kiss them. She enjoyed holding girls and boys hands.

Me? I hated skirts, but I could tolerate them. Dresses though I loathed with every cell in my body. I was furious that boys got to wear pants and I couldn’t. Worst of all? I hated myself the most. How I couldn’t style my own hair. That my body was wrong is all I could articulate at that age.

I expected her to hate me, but she didn’t. She said that she loved me and that no matter what I was still her baby. She said that she knew and that she wrestled with it for many years. That she prayed to God so many times to “fix” me, but that being in the hospital had made her realize that her prayers had been answered when I came out to her. She said that she understood the only fixing that I needed was to stop living a half-life in the shadows. I was beside myself and crying so hard. I was so relieved and happy that she accepted me.

She apologies for how she treated me as a child, and I told her that I wanted to become an ordained minister through the Universal Church. That I wanted to help other Christians to accept LGBT people like me.

I talked about my fears about coming out to the family. She told me that she would help me and that she would speak to all of you. Of course, she never spoke again after that night, but she would squeeze my hand and tell me she loved me before she couldn’t anymore.

So after she passed away before the start of the new year, I began transitioning after a year and a half long battle with Tricare to cover hormone replacement therapy. I jumped through 2 million hoops and red tape before on Oct 11th of last year Tricare rolled out its trans-inclusive policy.

It took me another 3 months to get in to see an endocrinologist and get prescribed Testosterone after having to see a psychologist for over 6 months. So I have been seeing a Christian psychologist for over a year and a half now.

His name is Dr. Randal Smies and is practice is in West Ashley. I have an appointment every Wednesday at 5pm to 6pm. Anyone that needs help wrapping their head around is welcome to come as my guest.

So just to recap and also clear up so things. I’m a transgender transman, and I am almost a year into my transition from female to male.

I asked Dad a week after starting hrt if he would be angry if I changed my name and you told me no because Momma picked it anyhow. I was hoping he would inform me of a male name that I would be if I were born with the “correct parts”… but he didn’t.

So instead of Rachel Annesley Marino, I am now Raidyn Lee Marino. I have been using the middle name Lee as a shorting of Annesley. My name is legally still Rachel, but that will not be the case for long. I plan to have my name and gender marker changed by this time next year. So instead of she/her, I use he/him, or they/them both are acceptable.

Female pronouns and calling me Rachel or Rache will no longer be acceptable. Accidents are okay I know it is an adjustment, but I will not be misgendered and disrespected. I love you all and do not want to lose you, but I know that I need to be me.

So in conclusion in by the new year, I will no longer be using my Facebook account. I made a new one last January that I have added those who know I’m trans, respect, love, and accept me for who I am. So those who choose to do so will be added to that account.

Last but not least I have made exciting new changes with my business that you can see if you go to and check out my Etsy shop which will soon have my original canvas artwork available. As well as my RagnOn shop where you can get high-quality fashion art print clothing, home decor, canvas prints, and more.

If you would like to help support me then, please help me reach my goal of 500.00 gross sales on RageOn this month. Your continued support helps me pay my bills and eat, which I can not do without the support of my friends, family, and followers.

So in close. I have been awake all night typing this, and I’m hoping you’re all still sleeping. I am going to turn off my phone take my sleeping meds and go to sleep. Please comment here, text me, send an email, contact me through my business page, Facebook message, or snail mail if you must.
((((((((((((((((((DO NOT CALL!!!!!!!))))))))))))))))

If I don’t hear anything, I will understand and will still love you forever.

– 💖 Your Son, Nephew, Uncle, Brother,
Raidyn Lee Marino