Sorted: Growing Up, Coming Out, and Finding My Place Summary & Study Guide

Jackson Bird
This Study Guide consists of approximately 45 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Sorted.
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Sorted: Growing Up, Coming Out, and Finding My Place Summary & Study Guide Description

Sorted: Growing Up, Coming Out, and Finding My Place Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion on Sorted: Growing Up, Coming Out, and Finding My Place by Jackson Bird.

The following version of the book was used to create this study guide: Bird, Jackson. Sorted: Growing Up, Coming Out, and Finding My Place. Tiller Press, 2019. Amazon Kindle eBook.

After beginning with a glossary of relevant terminology which will appear throughout the book and explaining some of the story's background in the introduction, Jackson dives into his life narrative from an early age when he was assigned female at birth. As a child, Jackson enjoyed dressing according to what would traditionally be considered masculine gender norms. However, as he grew up, he often went back and forth in his presentation, sometimes presenting himself more masculine, sometimes more feminine, and sometimes androgynously. Growing up in suburban Texas, Jackson lacked education or role models on LGBTQ+ topics and struggled to reconcile his internal world with external gender norms and his misconceptions around sex, gender, and sexuality. Jackson never felt truly comfortable in his body and thought of himself as one of the guys. However, in order to fit in, he eventually adopted a more stereotypically female presentation in high school.

At Southwestern University in Texas, Jackson begins to be introduced to the LGBTQ+ community and many of his misconceptions around sex, gender, and sexuality begin to be corrected, particularly as he starts doing his own research and eventually finds an online transgender community. However, Jackson's first year of university is marred by a negative and manipulative relationship that compromises his mental health. He decides to transfer to NYU but does a semester abroad in Amsterdam first. There, Jackson builds up the courage to come out to two friends and not long after comes out to his mother. He is still unsure about when he will transition, and remains closeted to everyone else in his life. In New York, Jackson privately begins to take steps toward transitioning. He begins binding his chest, which helps with his gender dysphoria. Despite this improvement, Jackson is still in a period of questioning and secrecy, unsure about when or how he will come out and transition.

After graduating, Jackson gets work with the Harry Potter Alliance (HPA), a charity with which he had been volunteering. He loves his job; it provides him with a community and helps him start his YouTube channel where he begins to build a following. He makes the big decision to cut his hair short and dresses in progressively more masculine fashions. At a formal HPA event, Jackson's gender dysphoria finally becomes overwhelming when he feels he has to wear a dress instead of a suit and he realizes that transitioning is now a necessity. Jackson makes a plan to come out to his friends and family, who are all supportive, accepting, and loving. He then films and schedules a coming out video to post to his YouTube channel in order to come out to his followers. Again, the response is overwhelmingly supportive and positive. During this process, he also starts hormone replacement therapy and gets shots of testosterone. Eventually, Jackson decides to get top surgery to remove his breasts and begins to find a network and community of fellow trans people.

His transition and coming out relatively complete, Jackson no longer struggles with gender dysphoria as he used to and is in good mental health. He starts working as a trans educator and activist, primarily through his YouTube channel, and several amazing career opportunities come his way, including the chance to give a TED Talk. At the end of the book, gender and transitioning are no longer at the front of Jackson's mind or consuming his everyday thoughts. He attends his ten-year high school reunion and is not misgendered once. He is happy and ready for the next phase of his life, whatever that may be.

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This section contains 626 words
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