Avery Dickerson deconstructing thoughts on gender

by Rebecca Harrelson


There is a clothing company here in Greensboro that’s a game changer for gender norms. DECON- STRUCT is built around the idea that clothes do not have to be for only a man or only a woman, but for anyone and everyone. Clothing is an expression of art and personal style. Why limit your clothing to a specific gender?

Avery Dickerson, a 24-year-old UNCG graduate, had the idea to start DECONSTRUCT around May of last year. He started producing clothes in August, with determination at its finest. Starting the business completely out of pocket, DECONSTRUCT is now getting its own bank account, filling out LLC paperwork and singing on Tinker Clayton as a business partner.

You may have seen DECONSTRUCT around Greensboro, it is one simplistic hard hitting image, half a “male” outline and half a “female” outline placed together.

The Green Bean downtown has taken DECON- STRUCT’s gender-neutral bathroom signs and placed them on both bathrooms. DECONSTRUCT has a pop up store on Elm Street in Downtown Greensboro and is hoping to shed light on a community that is much larger than it may seem.

“I think there are a lot of hidden parts of the queer community here. There is a larger queer audience than what most people see on a day-to-day basis. The queer population here is pretty big, but they are hidden,” Dickerson said.

This business endeavor hits home for Avery, who has just started the transitioning processes.

“Sometimes it’s really difficult to find clothes that fit me and my personal style.” He started seriously considering transitioning female to male two years ago. I was fortunate to be one of the first people Avery told, and being able to see him come into who he truly is, even from afar, is an inspiration. Dickerson was uncertain of who to tell and how to go about this change. “I was afraid of my family, and I just was kind of mad at myself honestly; that I couldn’t just be who everyone else wanted me to be”¦a girl.”

Realizing that holding in his truth was more detrimental than actually starting the conversation, Dickerson took a huge step forward, to his own personal identity. Finding the support from friends and family to be overwhelmingly positive, Dickerson started the transitioning process.

“Everyone in the LGBTQIA has been so awesome, trying to help me with telling me what’s happening, and what to expect. My therapist, which is mandatory to have when transitioning, has been great. The internet and the community have been really helpful.”

Tree Of Life is where Dickerson went for her mandated therapy appointment. “I’ve only been once but I’ll be back to see Shana Cole. She’s really cool. She has a huge mirror along her wall, and a bar with makeup, I asked her why she had that there if she got ready at work? She told me she teaches Trans clients how to do their makeup. How cool is it that a cisgendered, middle-aged mom is such a great ally? It’s just refreshing to know those allies and support systems exist in our community.” !