I decided to start crafting a coming out letter. It has been a long time coming. I've read a lot about coming out to friends, family, children, coworkers, etc. Each is a unique audience. I wrote this first letter primarily to read to my pastor. If you could review and provide comments I would appreciate it. The one thing that I did not do in the letter, that so many other letters attempt to do is explain gender dysphoria or what transgender is or means. I consciously decided not to do that. First, if anyone has any questions I want them to approach me and ask. Second, what I've noticed in coming out letters, particularly ones that try to explain gender issues in a way that justifies transition, it is a slippery slope. In many letters, it is almost like the writer is giving the reader authority to weigh in or to disagree. So, I've tried to intentionally limit discussions of "Why" and "What I am". They can ask if they have questions and they can accept me. There is not a lot of middle ground here. Thank you for your help!
"There is something that only very few friends and family know about me. Something that I have struggled with since I was a very young child. I have gender dysphoria. I have had therapy and attended support groups off and on for over the last 28 years or so to seek understanding and to cope with this. Over the last six months I have started attending therapy and support groups on a regular basis to gain support, knowledge and acceptance. Over the past month I have started to be treated medically based on the recommendation of my therapist and doctor.
What does this mean? Over the next two to three years I will transition to living as a female. This will be an adjustment for everyone, particularly friends and loved ones who have always known me as Scott. There have been and will continue to be people who accept me unconditionally without any understanding. But I know there will be those who struggle with this, seeking some sort of logical argument or explanation prior to acceptance. I do not have a logical explanation for why I am this way or why I now feel that it is critical for me to live as a female after living as the gender that I was assigned at birth for 42 years.
Why now? I have prayed about this since I was a child. I have asked for many things and made many promises to the Lord. I have asked the Lord to change me, to help me cope and to accept me. Each time I've prayed I have felt a love that is strong and accepting. I am female in mind and in spirit, but male biologically. There a many people in this world who face serious challenges. It just so happens that this is the life challenge that I was meant to face. I was made this way for a reason. I don't completely understand why yet or fully appreciate or comprehend. But I do know and have known for years that the Lord made me and he accepts me for who I am. What has been the most difficult for me is that even though I am accepted by Jesus, I have never fully accepted myself. Though I still do not fully accept myself, transitioning to living as female is a step towards this self acceptance. It is a very painful step for many involved, yet it is a necessary step for me to emerge from the shadows and to live an open, healthy life.
I fully expect some anger, rejection directed towards me. No matter, I will always love those who have known me and supported me as Scott. However, for sanity sake I will step away and out of the lives of those who act out in destructive ways or are abusive. I will hope and pray that anyone who rejects me based on this will find the peace and joy that comes with acceptance. And my door will always be open to anyone who genuinely loves me and seeks understanding.
One more thing, many transgender individuals who have gender dysphoria transition to their perceived gender or they commit suicide. My hope is that I can help others avoid this pain, isolation and rejection by setting a positive example and helping create an environment of acceptance and understanding. For people who are transgender, there is a lot of confusion mostly due to lack of support, misinformation and / or rejection by friends, family or society in general. In some way, I hope that I can help and "pay forward" much of the love and support that I have received over the years to others in need.
In closing, if you have any questions about issues related to gender identity or gender dysphoria, please approach me and ask me those questions. I am looking forward to discussing as well as providing resources to those who genuinely seek understanding.
Thank you for your love and support."
I have been really feeling vulnerable and as a result emotional. I cried several times today.
I've been having a two-fold problem in Facebook. One I have guys constantly wanting me to add them. And then guys messaging me for sex, sex cams, etc. It is ridiculous. Then I have had a few non-trans people make negative comments, either on Facebook or in person. I've been called a freak, man-in-a-dress, dude.
It used to never bother me, but I think because I am close to transitioning, it is really bothering me. Also, I've read a lot of articles and I see how a few spoken words by someone prominent in the media can ruin many people's lives. Language can be a powerful thing and we all know that it is easier to tear someone down instead of building them up. An example was Pat Robertson telling his followers not to go to their sons or daughters same sex wedding. Who does something like that? Surely not a man of God. Yet, his followers will hear this as if it came from the heavens themselves. Can you imagine what kind of impact those words will have. I'll bet that hundreds if not thousands of people's lives will be negatively affected because it. It is horrible. And the same thing is true about non-trans folks and their name calling of trans folks. Freak, fag, dude, tranny ... even drag queen. I've been called all of those things (I don't mind drag queen as much though ... but I still correct people). But say that to a 15 year old who is thinking of coming out or transitioning. Think of how horrible that is. Or threats of violence towards trans people. This is the real world that we live in and the consequences.
I digress. I've been feeling absolutely terrible to the point of tears because I feel totally wrong right now. And changing it is not going to be easy. Though all of you know that!
I also want to mention that a dear friend of the community, Lauren Tenent passed away yesterday. She was the president of TGEA and had an extremely positive impact on everyone. I did not know Lauren very well because I just started engaging again in the community over the last couple of years. However, I remember talking with her back in July at a party for two hours, just getting to know her. She made everyone feel like they mattered and was a wonderful, loving person.
Anyways, everyone have a good weekend. Take care.
I had a little bit of an odyssey this weekend filing my prescription. So even though I received the script on Wednesday, I was not able to fill it until today (wow). It's amazing, but it hardly cost me a thing. 2 months of Estradiol and 1 month of Spironolactone for $25 through Costco. So I took Estradiol for the first time today. Just a 1 MG pill, but felt a little different immediately after for about 15 to 20 mins. Not sure what that was about. I had an empty stomach. Also, the Dr. asked that I let the pill dissolve under my tongue for maximum effect. I don't know if that was what did it. For the first 30 days, I am to take 1 Mg twice per day and then it doubles after that. I will have follow up bloodwork in August just to check my levels again. Should be interesting!!
Which is amazing. Insurance is covering the bloodwork and appointments. The biggest short term expensive is electrolysis and laser. I had to delay the laser two weeks, because I had very little growth after 7 weeks. I don't know if it will come screaming back at 8 weeks. I hope not.
Yesterday, my wife had a meeting with our pastor, where my pastor made disparaging remarks about local trans* issues in the area. I somewhat expected being trans may be a problem at my current church. Anyways, my wife was mad and upset and told me to put off telling our pastor that I am trans*. I told her that I may look at other churches. I grew up Presbyterian and did not realize that they are trans* friendly. I am not going to say what denomination that I currently go to, but I will seriously consider going back to the Presbytery. Methodists, Episcopals, UU's and other churches are accepting and won't be a problem for me. I will plan on visiting different ones, one per month, until I can decide what I want to do.
I was so proud of my wife. Her momma bear instincts kicked in big time. I am so thankful for that!
Life is full of surprises. I have always considered myself a fairly self aware person, but I've been surprising myself lately.
About three months ago, I told my wife that I thought that I would need to transition. Well, about two weeks ago at my appointment with my therapist, I reminded her of something that I had said at my very first appointment back in November which was wanting to develop new ways to cope with being trans but not having to transition. I was in "crisis" mode at the time, not sure what to do. I was unable to cope with being male, yet was hoping that I could develop other ways to cope. At this last appointment, I started to realize that I have been coping with this for 38 years. I've tried everything to cope and did very successfully for a number of years. But now that is not working.
Later that weekend, I read, "True Selves: Understanding Transsexualism". About 99% of it applied to me. It spoke to me in ways that helped me understand that I am fighting something that is who I am. So, here is the interesting thing. After I read that book, a flood of memories came back to me, about experiences I had repressed or long ago buried. This caused a flood of emotions over the last two weeks, making it even more difficult to cope. I noticed that dressing no longer helps. I need to transition to living as a female.
That weekend, I told my mom and she had a lot of questions and concerns, but she supported me. I told my wife that I needed to get on hormones and start laser / electrolysis. She, understandably, is very upset. Not just by the transition and the change to me and our lives, but she knows that I've been struggling with this and that I've been doing everything that I can do and she is really worried about me.
I made appointments to obtain hormones and laser. I had my first laser appointment on April 2 and a follow up appointment on the 23rd. My appointment to obtain hormones is on April 7th at Whitman-Walker. We will see how that goes. Another transwoman I know recommended them and she was able to get in and get on HRT quickly.
I started letting my hair grow out, because I thought this would happen. We will see how that goes. I will need to take finasteride as well because my hair is thin on top.
Anyways, it looks as though I am beginning a new journey. I will try to post more frequently with updates.
I hope that everyone has had a good week and a Good Friday. Thank you for your feedback and continued support.
Love and Blessings,
I went to my therapist today. Scheduled an appointment for June 18th in five weeks. I told her how things were going and the progress that I've made. It was more of an update and encouragement. She did provide me a signed copy of a safety letter. I am going to scan it and make copies.
One thing we talked about is my wife. Saturday night, she asked me what I was doing, that me transitioning was affecting her psychologically and that she was having difficulty focusing and burying herself in her volunteer work. Gave her an update and she said that this is a rollercoaster ride she doesn't want to be on. That she didn't signup for this. I told her that I know, that I didn't expect her to stay with me and that I loved her. She said that she doesn't want to be married to a woman. I totally understand that. But it doesn't sound good. Later she said that she wants me to be happy and that we will figure it out. I also approached her about dressing in front of her. She called it a nail in the coffin of our marriage. I glad she is honest with me and speaks her mind. But I walked away thinking that we are pretty much done. At this point, I will move forward but it will be about not making her angry so that we can work together.
"My Love, My Life" were the words I had inscribed inside my wife's wedding band. I really meant it. She was and is everything to me. I love her so much.
A few weeks ago, my wife told me she did not want to be with me anymore. She explained that she is not a lesbian. That she tried, but needs to be with a man and wants to start dating. I knew that she was struggling with my transition and our relationship. Many times in the past, she has said that if I transition, that she would not stay with me. Last year she had a change of heart, yet our relationship has changed. We are still loving with each other. She is my best friend. Yet she is not attracted to be anymore. We haven't had sex in 2.5 years. There are a lot of couples that stop having sex. But obviously this was something my wife needs.
She started to cry. I felt so bad for her. I was so sweet with her, I hugged her and told her that it was okay. I told her that I loved her, totally understood why she felt that way and supported her. That she was brave for saying what she said and that I am proud of her. I smiled and showed her so much love, the kind of unconditional love that I promised to give her when I married her. She is really an awesome person and woman. I am so fortunate to have had her in my life and shared so much of my life with her (the last 18 years). I've told her many times, that our marriage was "it" for me. I never want to be married to anyone else. But, there are no guarantees in life. She needs more than what I have to give. And honestly, we have grown apart. I am not the best and smartest spouse in the world. But I am the most kind and loving that she will ever meet. That does count for a lot and is very important. But that is not enough in our marriage. My attraction to her is still really strong and I told her that, not to make her feel bad but to let her know that I still find her desirable.
Last week, she suggested that I start dating guys. I have never been with or dated a man before. Mostly because I have not been physically attracted to guys and much more attracted to females, my wife specifically. It was a strange conversation. I don't know where it was coming from. Honestly, these next two or three months, I have a lot of things I am trying to tackle and dating is not in my forethought. But realistically, that is what I face in my future. Finding someone else who wants to share their life with me. Being a transwoman, this may be a difficult task. But I am not stressed out about it, because I have a lot of really awesome new friends that I can rely on who are very special and dear to me. I am very thankful for them and everyone who has stuck by me through all of this, especially my wonderful wife who I love and respect dearly.
It is so important to find love and happiness in life. I hope that all of us find what we seek.
Love and Blessings to All on this Special Day!!
Talked to the HR Director at HQ today (finally) and disclosed that I plan to transition within 6 months. I had typed up a long letter to give to her or read (it was the easiest letter to write ...). But instead of reading it, I decided that she and I would benefit more from a two-way conversation. It went really well. It turned out that a close friend of hers and her family just went full-time (MTF), so she was really, really excited for me, which surprised me. LOL. Anyways, I wanted to feel her out and see if she wanted to drive this or if I could. Basically she told me to do what I thought was right for me. Which was really great. So, I have a meeting scheduled with one of the project leads and am meeting with my VP this week after that. I have a follow-up with her tentatively planned for Tuesday to talk detailed timelines at which point we will approach the president.
I am really excited about this. Hell, I was excited before the call. It was LONG overdue. So, I know that this is going to "rock" some worlds. But anyone who has known me for a long time, I am pretty fearless when I commit to a decision. So it will be interesting how this will affect the dynamics of the office and my primary customer. It should be interesting and a great learning experience for me. And honestly, I see a much, much better life for myself, better relationships due to do me being able to be fully open with others and being true to myself. I will be able to connect at a much deeper level, more than I ever have my entire life. Also, I won't be wasting my life anymore trying to be someone else. Or by meeting someone else's expectations. I am truly free of the burdens, bonds and boundaries that I have placed around myself. It really is a "good thing". :-)
So, my wife's family now knows. And they have been super kind to me, which has caught me off guard and totally by surprise, because my wife and I are not staying together. There are more people that I need to tell over the next couple of weeks, but I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.
I am testing my wings. They are strong and they are beautiful. This is going to be an awesome ride!!
***I thought that I posted this earlier, but it did not come through (luckily I saved it!)
Coming off of Christmas, I was really busy going back to work after being out for 2 weeks. Things are becoming more clear for me and I think that I am going to start exploring what needs to be done to transition so that I can go into it with my eyes wide open.
On Friday I was supposed to have a therapy session but rescheduled, however I did go to the second friday support group. One of the topics was friendship and when sharing how my friendships have been affected by being trans, it became crystal clear for me. Though I've had periods early in life where I've made good lasting friendships, I have been unable to do that the last 25 years. It has been a challenge for me because I think people could tell that I was not being 100% open with them. It's not like it is anyone's business whether I am TG or not. However, most people can sense these things. And I think that I have been holding back somewhat because of what was going on with me. Plus, I've been leading a double life somewhat, friends on both sides, not being able to merge the lives and sets of friends. Unable to invest in strong, long-term relationships. I've been in a gray area. Limbo.
Regarding the crystallizing moment, that's when I realized that I've been wasting a lot of energy on being two people. It has affected my relationships, it has affected work and my business because so much of my energy has gone towards this and not something else. It's been distracting, particularly these last few months. I think about being "me" constantly.
Returning to work this week, the feelings of not being who I should be are still there. They have not gone away and never will. This isn't like quitting smoking, or drinking. This isn't a mind over matter thing.
So anyways, at that support meeting I finally realized that I have to transition. It won't be for a while, because I want to get my affairs and finances in order. However, I realized that I have been wasting so much energy, time, etc. that it has affected all of my relationships in one way or another, that I have felt terrible at different points of my life (even though I should not have). Wasting time in repression, purging, depression that have taken away from everything else I could be in life.
I started this blog for myself and to share based on a FB posting. I am glad that I did. I tend to keep things inside and tend not to share for a variety of reasons (mostly I am extremely introverted). Writing has helped me vent and to get it out. It's helped me think things through so that I can be confident about my decisions. But most importantly, I have received a lot of support from everyone who is reading. Thank you so much! Everyone who has contacted me to offer support and share, I really appreciate your support and your friendship. It has been so hard for me to get the support that I need, because I never took the time to reach out. I'm glad that I did and thank you. And if there is anyone reading these words who needs support and friendship, please do so. You can contact me or start a blog just like I have.
I would also like to apologize to taking several days in some cases to get back. It usually not until the weekends that I get a chance to reflect on the week and have the time to write about it.
Please have a good weekend and week. And thank you again!
My gender dysphoria has been really bad again this week. I did outline roadmap for myself, still working on it. But I need to get started with hormones and hair removal.
I don't know what else to do!
Last weekend I visited my mom for four days in Ohio. I have been trying to visit her at least once a month or every other month since my father passed away. It had been over two months since my last visit, so it was somewhat overdue.
During my last visit, I told her that I thought that I would need to transition. This last visit I told her that I am planning on taking hormones soon and hair removal. She was a little surprised, accepting but trying to understand why I was doing this. One of her first questions was, "are you sure that you really want to do this?" and "have you thought this through?". I told her that I've been thinking about it for my entire life. The other question she asked was "why now?". I told her that I've been coping with this since I was 4 years old, but a lot of the techniques that I use to cope are not working any more or not working well. She also asked me if it was possible that this has something to do with my dad dying, and I told her that it was possible, though I didn't start having a crisis until about 6 months after he passed away.
Anyways, it was a good visit. She and my sister both support me. That helps so much! I still need to discuss this with my wife though. I really have not had a chance to talk since I returned home. I hope that I will get a chance today or tomorrow.
I think that I am going to schedule my appointment this Monday for the endocrinologist and to start the laser removal. My therapist will send a letter to recommend me for hormones. I am fair skinned, have mostly black hair, so I should do okay. I'll have to get electrolysis to remove the remaining white hairs. I am hopeful that insurance will pay for the endo appointment and the blood tests.
I hope that everyone has had a good week.
I haven't posted in a while. I don't know why exactly. I've been in a rut this summer.
The intense anxiety that I experienced in April came back on Tuesday. I had it all day into Wednesday morning. Almost went to the ER. I cried all day long. I did get Xanax and Zoloft. It will take a couple of months to get my levels right, I'm sure. I feel better at the moment, but it comes and goes. I had problems on Thursday, Friday and today.
I know what the reason is. Gender Dysphoria. I don't know exactly what triggered it. However, I did spend time out this weekend, had a great time but had to go back to guy mode in order to go to work. So the reason is clear. I need to transition to full-time at some point.. The meds are just bandaid.
So I had a long talk with my wife. I told her that I will need to transition earlier. She cried. But I told her that eventually this will kill me. The meds are just a bandaid to get by. She agreed. We talked about telling her family, our children, my work, about her getting a job, neighbors, me possibly moving out, surgery, finances. It was a tough, tough conversation. She did so well though. She is so calm, understanding an smart which is amazing considering what we discussed.
Well I need to get to bed. I'll post more later.
Love you all!
A lot has happened since I last posted. On Friday, I set my full-time date with HR ... 12/19/2016. No significance to the date. It's just a good time to ease into my new routine, because there will be a lot of down-time in the office.. I have decided on my name, but will not disclose my new full name here until I am near my FT date. Lisa will (continue to) be my first name. I've had it for over 25 years and am used to it.
- I met with my VP who was really shocked, but supportive. There will be more follow-up with him and HR. I told him, that from a personal perspective the decision was not taken lightly and that to get to a decision was gut-wrenching. He said that he couldn't imagine anyone going through this unless it was absolutely necessary.
- I met with my project lead and a couple of coworkers. My project lead was so happy and excited for me and just glad that I wasn't leaving because he relies on me. The two coworkers I told, I was a little worried about, but those meetings went well.
I have been giving people that I disclose to the option of seeing pictures of me. I had some prints made at Walgreens to show people if they are ready for it. Once people see me as Lisa ... they totally get it.
I am excited and am very ready for this. I just hope that with me finally being open and honest with others that it will encourage more people to come out. My hope is that I can increase awareness and visibility by my presence in the workplace. I did talk with HR and there are some people in the office who do not know someone who is transgender and I will be the first in the company. So it will be interesting, I'm sure. And speaking of visibility, I fully intend on looking fabulous. I am sure that some worlds will be "rocked". Hopefully, not too many heads will explode. But if they do, I will deal with it like I always have, with grace, love and kindness. <3
So out of the last two months, Monday had to be the worst gender - identity day for me. It was a crisis. Very distracting at work. I was sick to my stomach all day. Did not sleep well. All and all, not a good day to be a guy for me.
I did ride the metro in. I am a big people watcher, so looking at all of the girls dressed to go to work made me think that I should be them. So, for me (just to let you know) this is no fantasy. I am extremely realistic about what I will encounter the first time I would ever go to work as a woman. However, it is to the point that I just can't take it anymore. My skin was crawling.
I called a therapist that another girl had used when she transitioned, but they did not get back to me.
Today went much better. I was not so obsessed about it being a guy as I was on Monday. However, the feelings definitely persisted. I am a fighter. I am sure that I will continue to fight this (mind over matter). However, today I had no fight left after yesterday.
However, I had a more productive day at work. And that is really another reason why transition is something that has to be on-the-table for me. Because these last two months it has been so bad, I have been in a daze. And even when, I don't have gender-identity issues, guess what? I still have a part of my day where I think about dressing and presenting as female. If I transitioned to female, I might have a ton of regrets. But I know I wouldn't dream about dressing or being a guy. That for me, has been wasted effort and bandwidth all of these years. Not having to think about being a different gender (though I am still me after all!), would not be a weight off of my shoulders but at least I wouldn't think about it all of the time.
However, I have been dressing for years. Can do makeup and get read pretty quick. But it still is a pain in the ass. The expectations for women and how they dress are so high. I can't stand it. Anyways, that's the tradeoff.
The therapist that I called on Monday did get back to me. Turns out she had just closed her practice but referred me to two other therapists. I was hoping to maybe get in this week, because I will be out next week visiting my mom. Needless to say, I was a little disappointed. But it has been how many years. I am super patient!
Week of 2015-01-26
So I thought I posted this, but did not. Don't know what happened.
I did talk with my wife last week about having difficultly in not transitioning and being transgender and that I think that I need to transition. I told her that I talked to my therapist about and that she would recommend me, just based on the few sessions I had. She cried and reminded me that she wanted to be married to a man. I cried as well. She said that this would be so hard and how do you plan on doing this without creating tons of problems. And I said that I did not know. But I was planning on resigning from the church vestry if I did transition. And even though I know the church would support and accept me, that I would probably leave because I would not want to rip the church apart.
Another question she asked was, "why now?" And I told her I did not know why, but that I think it has to do with me tying my identity to my career / job. My dad dying may have something else to do with it as well. I also told her that, if I did transition, it would not be for 2 to 3 years. I told her that she was all that I have ever wanted that I would continue to work and fight for this family through my transition. And continue to do whatever I had to, in order to support my family.
I told her again that I've felt like this my whole life, since being 3 or 4 years old. That there are so many ways that we sin or behave badly, and that in most cases when we are young those things are put on us as youth. But this is the one of those things that society or family did not put on me... it was always there. I didn't know anything about being gender-variant until I was in 5th grade.
The next day driving to work in the morning she called me, which she never does. She told me that no matter what I do, that I will support you. For me, that means the whole difference in the world. It is not a promise, because nothing in life is guaranteed. But what it means to me is that she will stand by me and support me through this if I decide to transition or not. Which will make the difference between those who are on the fence or will attack me based on this decision.
On Tuesday, I went to my appointment to obtain hormones to start HRT at Whitman-Walker based on a recommendation from another trans friend. Thankfully, Whitman-Walker is located in Washington DC, not far from one of the offices where I work. WW provides specialized Transgender healthcare and also provide legal services, which is why I am so glad I live here. I dressed at work and went to my appointment as Lisa. It was my first time on the metro (which is a rail system primarily underground) as me and my first time at WW. But I thought that it was important for me to present as myself and I felt like I shouldn't be getting hormones and transitioning if I didn't do that. Also, they carefully screen everyone seeking hormones to make sure that they are a candidate. They require a letter from a therapist as well.
Anyways, everything went well. It was a long appointment, about 2 hours. I filled out several forms before the appointment but they had more screening forms for me to fill out as well. The doctor asked me a lot of questions and said that I was a candidate and prescribed labwork that day. My followup were I get my results (and prescription, hopefully) is scheduled April 21, but I am going to see if I can have that moved up to the 16th to be coincident with my therapy appointment. All in all, the appointment went well, everyone was nice.
I had laser on April 2, which went well. I have a followup appointment for electrolysis to address my gray hairs. She is also going to do a "touch up" laser treatment on the hairs that did not release. That appointment is on the 23rd.
I am happy to get started. My future is uncertain. But at least I am on a path forward. I still have a lot of anxiety and my blood pressure is elevated, much higher than normal. I lost the ability to cope with this and it's been 3 weeks of feeling like this. I am going to talk to the doctor about some sort of anti-anxiety medication because it is starting to impact not just my well being but also my health.
I have been getting a lot of support from several others asking if I wanted someone to come with me to my appointment, etc. It has been nice to know that there are others out there thinking about me. Everyone's support has been wonderful. I hope to pay it forward in the future.
Needless to say, with my inability to cope with being a transwoman living a male life, I feel very vulnerable like I am walking on a tightrope with out a net. It feels daunting thinking about what I faced in the past and what I face looking forward. I often feel overwhelmed by anxiety. I hope, at least, I can find a medication to keep this at bay until I can cope again and / or transition.
I hope that everyone has had a good week and thank you everyone for your support.
So, I had a follow-up appointment this week at Whitman-Walker. My blood tests came back normal, they received my recommendation letter from my therapist. I was prescribed T-blockers will get blood work again in three weeks and then if all goes well, start Estrogen two weeks after that (May 13th).
So I have my script and I will pick it up tomorrow. I can't wait to get moving on this!
All of the dark hairs did fall out two weeks after the laser. In the meantime, I don't need to wear so much makeup, which is awesome and makes me feel so much better.
I had my therapy appointment. A lot of things happened this month that we covered. I am also going to start carrying recommendation and safety letters with me. Recommendation letters are for medical appointments, as needed. The safety letter if I get into a jam, particularly with law enforcement, for some other authority, should I need it (like getting pulled over).
We also talked about coming out to my children, my pastor. After two years, my wife still hasn't seen me dressed. That is something I need to work on to set up a time with her to see me. I may just need to surprise her, but that is a last resort. I would rather not do that.
I hope that everyone has had a good week. I love all of you!
This past week was interesting. I just started an upped dosage of Spiro today. It seems to be agreeing well with me. No side affects and it seemed to calm me.
I went to a service on Saturday. On my way home, much like I usually do, I'll stop in Target, etc. to get food, wine, whatever. I was a bit overdressed but looked presentable and classy. Anyways I had someone say to me, "hey beautiful" and I, being a bit flustered said "Thank you". I am always polite, but I was a little mad at myself. If he had told me that I looked nice or beautiful, I would have been okay. But "hey beautiful" just seemed derogatory towards women. I've had guys say so many things to me before, I am surprised I was surprised. I think that my mind was in a different place due to the service. It was beautiful, but I felt bad after the service.
This week at work, I found out three people are leaving. One was fired after he gave his two weeks. So, I am picking up the pieces. I thought that my head would explode on Monday.
I have a touch up laser and electrolysis this Thursday. Nothing next week, but then a baseline blood test the week after that. Hopefully I can get on estrogen sooner than later. We'll see. It won't happen for at least another 4 weeks though. But I've been waiting for 38 years to live as myself. What's a couple more months or years.
Oh and there is one more thing. Anxiety is creeping back. My ability to cope was gone after all of the repression was stripped away. I though that may be that was in my past but I will need something.
Hopefully, everyone's week is going well so far. Tomorrow is humpday!!
I had blood work done on Wednesday to make sure that my potassium levels were not too high on the Spiro. Those tests came out normal, which was good. I am hoping that means that I will get a prescription for Estrogen at my followup appt on May 13.
I had a one hour electrolysis appointment on Thurs. It went really well. The electrologist flew and was able to clear a significant amount of hairs around my lips and chin.
My blood pressure is normal, I still have bouts of anxiety so I need to start to take something for that soon.
I had long conversations with my wife, mom and sister this week. My mom is having a hard time understanding why I need to do this. It certainly was not my first option, lol! The way I described it to my mom is that I had developed ways to cope with my male gender over the years. This included repressing a lot of things. Once I stop repressing memories and feelings, and the repression was stripped away, I could no longer cope. Everything that I had tried in the past which used to work, does not work anymore. I told my mom not to worry about me, that I have really good survival instincts.
I am under no illusion about how tough this road is that I will travel. Yet, I will not let people treat me poorly or be disrespectful. Changing gender is taboo and challenges cultural norms. But, really, when you think about it, why is changing one's gender such a big deal? It is a personal choice that impacts no one, except those who are sensitive and/or judgmental. But there is nothing that can be done about this.
I hope everyone has had a good week. Be happy, be well and be safe!!
I've been doing better this last week, however had a pretty pivotal conversation with my wife. She hasn't wanted to talk about what I'm doing, doctor's appt, electrolysis, etc. But on Saturday night, she told me that she wanted to talk about it. So I told her what I was doing (even though I had told her what I was doing before) and she basically told me she felt like she was on a rollercoaster ride that she did not sign up for. That going on hormones and seeing me dressed were nails in the coffin of our marriage. In other words, we are done and it is just a matter of time. I told her that I totally understood, that I do not blame her for her feelings and that I love her. She basically told me that she was having a difficult time dealing with this psychologically, that she was burying herself in the kids, activities, television, Internet, etc. to avoid thinking about it. The next morning, mother's day, I woke up and just cried. It's amazing. She is a special, special person. Lately, I've been having a lot of sex dreams with her, but she wants nothing to do with me. But, that is okay. This stuff is really, really hard. I've been dealing with it my entire life, and now everyone else gets to deal with it, along side me.
My immediate concern is that I don't make her angry. I'm not going to walk around on eggshells round her, however I am going to respect where she is at and the boundaries. I did tell her that I needed to start hormones soon, because it will take 2 - 3 years for the changes to happen (like I really know). She was supportive of that. That is really all that I can ask. Keep the hair removal and hormones going.
My follow up appointment is this Wednesday at 5pm to find out if I can start estrogen. My blood tests came back normal after starting the Spiro, so I'm hoping that is an affirmative and I walk away with a prescription for estrogen. Hopefully, in two months or so, i can start finasteride to address the hair loss. But he said that he'll most likely cut back on the spiro to do that. Whatever.
I am hopeful for the future, but know that there is a much higher chance that this will not go well, at least initially, and that I will not get the support that I need. But there is nothing that I can do about how people act or feel. But there is much more uncertainty now in my future.
I still have not had that talk with my pastor. In fact, I had to skip the vestry meeting tonight because today was a rough day for me. So I still need to do that. Still need to tell my kids. My wife wants me to hold off. Because she feels that my daughter is having a rough time. But I feel like the time is now before she gets older.
I love all of you and hope that you had a good week. Please send me an email or comment. I love hearing from everyone.
My dosage of Estradiol has been increased. I am looking forward to the changes that come with that. So far I've noticed the following changes:
- Overall, I am much more calm and patient. Though, because I haven't transitioned yet and feel kind of trapped I get impatient and angry.
- I am much more focused. More than I have been my whole life!
- Overall, I sleep much better at night. I can sleep 12, 13, 14 hours straight if I really need it. I was totally unable to do that before. Though, lately I have woken up in the middle of the night anxious (like I used to). I have brief periods of fear and anxiety that I am going to lose everything and everyone due to transition.
- My sex drive is less. Actually, when I started HRT, the first four weeks, my sex drive dropped to zero, but has bounced back. Still lower.
- Physically, the only thing I've noticed is some shrinkage below and my breasts are swollen and a little sore if I press on the nipple.
- My appetite is about the same but I get the munchies much less, which has been the killer for me!
Hopefully, not TMI. But I wanted to share. I've only been on HRT for two months, but have noticed changes. Mentally, it has been dramatic. Physically, not as much. I would imagine with the increase in estrogen, the pace of change will pick up.
I took some time off of work. It was wonderful. 11 days off. Spent a lot of time with my family and my children. So as with everything, it is just a fleeting moment, a "snapshot in time". I had to go back to work and my wife took the kids to her parents to FL to visit.
Right off the bat, I MISS ALL OF THEM!! They left Sat morning, but I found myself in full meltdown mode on Sunday night. And I found myself seriously questioning transition. I cannot remember the last time I called "home" in tears. Nothing is stronger than the human bond.
Anyways, I mentioned in previous blog posts that I've had these minor panics in the middle of the night. Mostly based on transition.
I called my mom last night, because I knew that I needed it. She and I had the most frank conversation about being trans*, what it means, how "I feel". She still does not understand, but is very supportive, which I am so thankful for.
Anyways, I told her that she, my sister and my family (my wife, kids and silly dog) are the most important people in my life. That when I started to take Estradiol, I started to think more clearly than I have for many, many years. And that I wish I wasn't this way, was having second thoughts of transition and that the death of my dad may have something to do with a lot of what I've been going through over the last 9 months. There are other things like losing my business of 8 years, working in DC and having to deal with a terrible commute and the stress of the job.
Anyways, she encouraged me to talk with my wife and to think about what I want to do. I told her that my desire to transition was extremely strong, until HRT but that a cloud was lifted when I started HRT and that the Testosterone was causing me to be super aggressive and driven to transition, was gone. Make no mistake. I have been TG my whole life, but this is an adjustment not having T in my system.
So, what I told her was that in a perfect world, I would have transitioned when I was child, but that did not happen. Instead, I learned to be male. Being male, versus female, has been such a big part of my life that it has screwed me up. I have learned to socialize as male versus female. This is a huge uphill climb for me.
Anyways, there is a saying that, "getting old is not for sissies". Neither is transition. I will find my way at some point.
On an up note, I talked to my mom about moving closer to me. She asked me if that is what I wanted and I said absolutely yes! Anyways, my hope is that by the end of next year, we can make it happen. She is one source of my panic. I am afraid of losing her and my sister. So I am hoping that the both of them will be able to move down.
Sorry for the fatalistic, crazy diva dump, which is what I've felt like recently. This is hard stuff, it can be situational and very different for everyone. I am just thankful for my family and for the support that I've received here.
I love you all and thank you for your love and support.
Love and Blessings,
I feel much better. It took me a couple of days to emerge from the mental crater left behind from my meltdown a week ago. Work and a business trip, took my mind off of things for a while. It was the perfect medicine for what ailed me which I knew would be the case.
I had to buy sports bras because running has become painful. 2 for $20 from Costco. Breasts are a pain in the a$$, but I'll take them. Lol! I am almost a size B which is crazy. My left breast is growing faster than my right. I don't want them to get too big. I like to exercise quite a bit, so they just get in the way. Plus being big breasted makes it harder to find dresses. I can always add padding if i need to.
Work is getting better. I finally feel like I am starting to fit in after 2.5 years at my current job, lol!
My wife did tell two close family friends, who go to our church and are the godparents to our kids, that I am trans*. My wife said that they were supportive, which is good news. Not sure other members will feel the same.
Thank you for all of your love and support! I cannot do it without you all.
I hope that you have a glorious week.
Love and Blessings,
Warning - this is a boring post. Thank goodness, lol!
I am doing better since my last post. Things have stabilized. I talked with my wife today and she was warm and reaffirming. I've been biking a lot. I rode 50 miles yesterday and almost 80 miles today with a friend from my support group. I am getting ready for the Reston Century in two weeks. Still have more work to do, if I am going to make it. But I feel better about my chances.
I did go to my therapist appt two weeks ago, but have missed a couple support group meetings as well as "going out" events. Part of it is that I've been out of town quite a bit, on vacation or travel. Things should settle down bit after my kids go to school. This summer has been much busier than I expected overall. In fact, I missed three weeks of electrolysis appts. I'll miss again next week as well.
I went to an appt to get blood work this week, for the first time since starting Estradiol. Everything came out normal, however I don't know what my levels are yet. I have a follow-up appt scheduled next week, but will need to reschedule to the following week.
I hope that all is well with everyone. I am feeling much better. Hope that will continue and hope that all is well with all of you.
I had a good week last week and this one is turning out to be just as good. First, I finally feel stabilized on my meds over a week ago.
This past weekend I met up will a large group of ladies for a Christmas party at the Marriott. That was nice. I posted one of my pictures.
My job is going well. I am feeling good and in good shape. Everything seems to be better. I am mentally strong again.
I hope that all is well with everyone.
This week I had to work, but I was able to reflect a bit on what was a difficult last three years or so. It's seems as though just in the last three weeks as I have stabilized, I have been able to focus, be more task-oriented, yet be able to look forward, plan and conceptualize what my future might look like or what may be possible. It is always difficult to say what will happen. Yet I won't let that deter me from making sound plans for myself that are achievable. I have a few focus areas for next year: my family and friends ... work continuously to strengthen many of the life-long relationships that I've had with my friends and strengthen ties with family. Seek out allies. People who I think will support me as I transition. Make new friends and network. Spend more time with not only trans* folks but cigender folks as well so that I can start to socialize in my new role. Come up with a more solid transition plan. But at the same time, not rush into anything or put undue pressure on myself to meet a deadline.
The holidays can be painful for many people. I am thankful that I was able to spend this time with my family. I've lost many people I have loved over the last couple years. And otherwise things were extremely difficult for me for several other reasons. But I am thankful. We all are happy, healthy. We have a wonderful life and home together. I am getting what I need to transition and take care of myself. And most importantly, I have the loving support of my family. Life is a struggle. Eventually, we all lose this struggle. It's what we do during the struggle, which defines who we are. And as bad as things can be, we need to look for the little things to enjoy in life. For me it is my children, the outdoors and riding my bike. And focus on the positives and what is good in a given situation. And invest in the relationships we do have. And create new lasting friendships. It costs nothing to be kind and loving to others. Don't harbor anger. Forgive and love others. Even when they seem beyond loving. It's all tough stuff. And transition is tough stuff.
If anyone is struggling, please feel free to send me a message. I am here for anyone who needs it. I can be a friend if you need a friend or someone to talk to. Just let me know.
I hope that everyone is having a good Christmas and has a wonderful New Year in 2016. I think that it will be a good one! (I hope ... LOL!)
Love and Blessings,