Tom has been dealing with gender dysphoria all of his life and is now going to begin living as a woman. She will go by the name Laura Jane Grace and begin taking hormones and undergoing electrolysis treatments. After a year living as a woman she will decide whether or not to undergo sexual-reassignment surgery.
My first thoughts were of a selfish nature, "What about Against Me!? Will this change his voice?!? or her voice?!? Will the band stay together? etc etc". I didn't need to worry. The band are staying together. Apparently her voice won't change all that much either, not yet anyway. Even if it does, it doesn't matter. In her own words "However fierce our band was in the past, imagine me, six-foot-two, in heels, fucking screaming into someone's face." - She can scream into my face any day.
I loved Tom Gabel before I read this news. Singers of punk bands are usually dicks, but Tom is not only an amazing songwriter but a genuinely nice person. And that voice. Fuck, that voice gets my blood pumping. I love Laura even more than I loved Tom. I can't begin to imagine how tough it must have been to tell your wife that you want to become a woman, let alone how she must have felt. The fucking brilliant thing is that they are staying together. She isn't attracted to men, it isn't about that, and she supports her decision fully. That's fucking love right there. To stand by someone no matter what, even a sex change. If only we could all be so lucky.
I can't get my head around the courage it must have taken to come out like this. I have nothing but admiration and respect for you, Laura. I tend to hero worship people for ridiculous reasons, but I feel justified in saying that you are my hero, you are an inspiration, and if I had even an ounce of the courage and strength that you possess I would be a happy man. You may not want them anymore but you've got bigger balls than any person I have known!
"There is an ocean in my soul,
where the waters do not curve."
- Laura Jane Grace, The Ocean