Margaret Berg

Interviewed By Rafaela Anshel

Margaret Berg discusses growing up in quiet farm country in Ohio with a large family in the 1980s. She then moving to New York as a means of embracing her own sexual identity while also having an adventure with her friend. Margret talks about her struggles of being an alcoholic for over 10 years while also coming to terms with her sexuality and gender identity.

Tags By Users + Add Tags

New York City (00:10)
Trans Oral Project (00:13)
New York Public Library (00:15)
Margret Berg (00:30)
46 (00:54)
she/her (01:02)
female pronouns (01:07)
transsexual (01:08)
Ohio (01:33)
farm country (01:36)
Appalachian Mountains (01:40)
1970 (01:58)
woods (02:18)
vegetables (02:19)
farm animals (02:21)
backwards (02:34)
open minded (02:43)
different (02:48)
large family (02:58)
four sisters (03:02)
cisgender (03:08)
Irish twins (03:13)
boy (03:32)
pregnant (03:38)
surprise (03:46)
pressure (04:06)
"only boy" (04:10)
family name (04:13)
didnt feel right (04:31)
dissapoint (04:49)
playing dress up (05:14)
stuffed animals (05:22)
tea party (05:26)
board meeting (05:33)
apron (05:38)
dress (05:43)
wig (05:46)
high school drama production (05:52)
sunglasses (05:55)
mowing the fields (06:06)
August (06:16)
new name (06:30)
Kimberly (06:37)
screamed (06:43)
shameful (06:58)
punished (07:00)
hormonally (07:37)
intersex (07:44)
feminine (07:47)
girly girl (07:54)
barbie dolls (07:57)
sterotypical (08:22)
climb trees (08:28)
halloween party (09:17)
costume (09:19)
alcoholic (09:36)
angry (09:47)
chaotic (09:56)
isolated (10:16)
generational trauma (10:33)
suicide (10:39)
fake interest (11:18)
pocket knives (11:23)
early life (11:56)
high school (12:07)
cross dressed (12:19)
keep quiet (13:12)
feminine (13:19)
fireman (13:39)
army (13:41)
football team (13:42)
little league (13:53)
afraid (14:18)
puberty (14:37)
suit (15:00)
dress (15:04)
books (15:23)
Christine Jorgensen (15:52)
14 (16:02)
transsexual (16:36)
spectrum (16:45)
medical condition (16:57)
medical intervention (17:10)
genderqueer (17:17)
horrifying (17:50)
liberating (18:02)
frustrating (18:05)
bullied (18:19)
nerd (18:28)
gay (18:40)
friend (18:53)
come out (19:14)
transvestite (19:26)
support network (19:50)
transgender (20:24)
ugly (20:37)
sex change (20:56)
senior year (21:35)
kill myself (21:38)
gender issues (21:41)
abusive (21:52)
transition (22:07)
outed (22:32)
18 (22:35)
therapy (22:46)
therapist (22:48)
psychological tests (22:53)
Columbus Medical center's gender clinic (22:59)
transitioning (23:07)
1980s (23:19)
insurance (23:30)
dead inside (24:29)
college (24:40)
trans (25:07)
Harry Benjamin model (25:15)
genitals (25:21)
transsexualism (25:55)
transition (26:09)
transgender (26:52)
crazy (27:00)
gay men (27:30)
LGB (27:35)
ohio (27:38)
support group (27:47)
in the closet (28:01)
date (28:20)
have sex (28:51)
anesthetized (29:04)
dissociating (29:13)
guilt betrayed (29:43)
alcoholic (29:50)
12 years (30:06)
30 (30:17)
crossdress (30:47)
wardrobe (31:24)
gay bars (31:37)
happy (32:20)
natural (32:24)
identity (32:38)
raped (32:48)
New Years Eve (33:02)
transgender (33:12)
cis girl (33:23)
Im gonna die (34:05)
apartment (34:42)
roommate (34:52)
makeup, dress, blouses, shoes (35:05)
crossdressing (35:27)
vicki (35:39)
alchohol (36:05)
obsession (36:46)
gay male (37:23)
misogyny (38:42)
politically incorrect (39:08)
transgender feelings (39:47)
internet (39:53)
email chat rooms (39:58)
Joyce (40:24)
marketing research (40:27)
male name (41:04)
ghosts (41:35)
2 gay men (41:56)
cincinatti (41:57)
womens formula vitamins (42:06)
operation (42:41)
clocking (43:32)
cross dressing (44:12)
drag queens (44:21)
drag (44:22)
quit drinking (45:03)
vaginas (45:22)
grindr (45:58)
celibate (46:13)
relationship (46:38)
straight male friends (47:07)
new york (48:02)
30 (48:08)
columbus ohio (48:19)
adventure (48:38)
roommates (49:00)
pickeled (49:27)
rehab (49:32)
recovery (49:40)
bars (50:07)
2000 (50:26)
dumb luck (51:04)
snowing (51:42)
blizard (51:43)
New Jersey (51:48)
chelsea (51:59)
shame (53:11)
tipping point (53:17)
humiliated (54:01)
substance abuse (55:03)
psychological problems (55:04)
self exploration (55:21)
therapy (55:53)
religion (56:11)
athiest (56:34)
pentecostal holiness church (56:51)
catholic school (57:14)
fundamentalists (57:19)
inside feelings (58:07)
eastern kentucky (58:21)
family history (58:33)
abomination (58:45)
god (59:07)
church (59:17)
Donald Trump (01:00:03)
transitioned (01:00:52)
acceptance (01:01:05)
cut hair short (01:04:16)
grew beard (01:04:17)
started to bluk up (01:04:19)
prostate infection (01:04:56)
stress (01:06:33)
womens glasses (01:07:09)
quit job (01:08:15)
legal secretary (01:08:27)
writing a book (01:08:39)
yoga class (01:09:14)
barrette (01:09:26)
COGIATI test (01:10:40)
trans (01:10:55)
probable transsexual (01:11:31)
transsexual (01:12:20)
Gender Identity project at the center (01:12:33)
LGBT CENTER (01:12:38)
13th street (01:12:39)
42 (01:13:12)
pain (01:14:15)
apicha (01:15:46)
hormones (01:15:48)
clinic (01:15:50)
manhatten (01:15:52)
female hormones (01:16:41)
2013 (01:16:42)
43 (01:16:43)
4 years (01:17:06)
Margret (01:17:18)
hippie (01:17:52)
facial feminization surgery (01:18:43)
barbie (01:19:31)
physical (01:21:33)
fashion sense (01:21:48)
stereotypically female (01:26:02)
lesbian (01:26:23)
friends (01:26:45)
straight (01:26:54)
community (01:28:13)
Inwood washington heights (01:28:42)
accepted (01:28:49)
testosterone (01:29:00)
lewd comments (01:30:33)
cat-called (01:30:47)
sport (01:31:42)
male dominated (01:31:53)
harassed (01:32:25)
victimize (01:33:53)
opression (01:34:14)
dating (01:35:16)
married (01:37:35)
settle down (01:37:49)
confidence (01:40:27)
feminist movement (01:42:36)
government (01:43:33)
database (01:43:39)
Trump (01:43:51)
health care (01:47:56)
music (01:49:52)

Transcript

Read transcript.

Interview Data

Date of Interview
September 5, 2018
Place of birth
Zanesville, Ohio
Occupations
Writer, Producer
Birth Year
1970
Rights Statement
The New York Public Library has dedicated this work to the public domain under the terms of a Creative Commons CC0 Dedication by waiving all of its rights to the work worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law. Though not required, if you want to credit us as the source, please use the following statement, "From The New York Public Library." Doing so helps us track how the work is used and helps justify freely releasing even more content in the future.

About This Collection

NYC Trans Oral History Project

NYPL's Community Oral History Project is teaming up with the NYC Trans Oral History Project to collect, preserve, and share oral histories from our city's transgender and gender non-conforming communities. 

We'll be training a community corps of interviewers to collect these largely undocumented oral histories in order to build a lasting and expansive archive on NYC transgender experiences.

About the NYC Trans Oral History Project:

We are a collective, community archive working to document transgender resistance and resilience in New York City. We work to confront the erasure of trans lives and to record diverse histories of gender as intersecting with race and racism, poverty, dis/ability, aging, housing migration, sexism, and the AIDS crisis. 

We are inspired by the public history activism of the ACT UP oral history project to build knowledge as a part of our anti-oppression work. We believe oral history is a powerful part of social justice work, and that building an alternative archive of transgender histories can transform our organizing for transgender liberation. 

You can listen to interviews, search interviews tags (like #genderfluidity #self-knowledge #gentrification and #queerfamily), and soon read transcripts. We hope the interviews and tags will preserve and proliferate new knowledges about trans and gender non-conforming experiences.

Content warning: Many of the interviews here include personal accounts of violence, sexual assault, abuse as children, or trauma.