GreenShade

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Everything posted by GreenShade

  1. GreenShade added a post in a topic Invitation for Significant Others   

    Hi K!  Welcome to TG Guide.   You are not alone - and this is a good place to share...I'm sorry you haven't found the 'right' person yet...but I do believe that with the advent of better understanding which is going to come, and I can attest to how quickly information is spreading, possibilities are out there for you finding that 'someone to love'. Don't give up hope --- be your beautiful self, and someone is going to see your light and gravitate towards it.  
    GreenShade
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  2. GreenShade added a post in a topic Questions From Spouses/Significant Others Of A Person Who Identifies As A Transgender Person Or Is A Transitioning Transsexual   

    Thank you for your comments above (Emma's post) --- from 'the other side' of it I have to say, looking back, and thinking of the assurances J gave me, you cannot totally know how transition is going to affect your life. you might know initially your sexual preference/interest/curiosities -- or maybe not. SRS seems to be a very individual need also. Your transition most likely will change the construct of your existence, and to a lesser degree it changes the construct of your partner's existence. Neither of you will be the same people you were when you began the journey. Will you grow together or apart? I do know that many couples DO stay together. So it can work. Start with honesty and communication --
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  3. GreenShade added a post in a topic Hetero Cisgender Man asks, "If I stay with _____(F2M) does it mean I am 'gay'?"   

    I think there is a lot more to sexuality than 'parts" --- though definitely 'parts' can be large part of it. The gender 'switch' plays on not only physicality but emotional and psychological aspects of the individuals involved. Most cisgender women I have spoken to find it a 'mind warp' initially. Some experience more than others, less than others, but it's a lot of 'mind adjustment' -- change...human's seem to 'resist change' sooner than they 'accept change' --- HA!!! But it can and does happen with support, communication and honesty. Particularly between individuals that love and care for each other. For me, it was never so much about the 'parts' as it was 'not understanding the phenomena' (this was in the mid-1990's) and having no one to ask questions of or to give me support or acknowledgement for my own feelings. So I had to find out for myself what it all meant. It required me to be willing to change my perceptions about J and about my self -- ...
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  4. GreenShade added a post in a topic Welcome New Forum Moderator GreenShade   

    Thank you, Monica! I do think that TGGuide provides a great service to the transgender community at large. I am very fortunate to be able to contribute whatever I can by my experience. Sharing brings its own reward for which I am grateful -

    I look forward to your contributions to others on this site, ALSO!

    GreenShade
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  5. GreenShade added a post in a topic Questions From Spouses/Significant Others Of A Person Who Identifies As A Transgender Person Or Is A Transitioning Transsexual   

    Bonnie and Usernameoptional - Thank you for your responses. I so wish that I had the information then that I have now! "Yes" to each person wanting to be his or her authentic self. So sad that so many of us have have had to suffer through the confusion and unhappiness over things we did not know, felt we could not change, desperately wanting different, feeling out all was out of our control -- unable to communicate our deepest needs, fearing loss - all of us in a state of unspeakable pain with our particular circumstance. It's a sense of gratitude that I have at this point, knowing that FINALLY information to support understanding and to promote the individual's need to live their authentic life, is beginning to be communicated. While there is much yet to be done on that front, we all know that change is happening. (TGGuide and its use of the internet is a great platform for informational exchange!) For myself, as I see the dialogue occur, I have begun to feel that now there is hope.
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  6. GreenShade added a post in a topic TG m2f partners support on here is there one?   

    When I began my journey as a significant other to J who transitioned from M>F, I could not find information or support for what I was experiencing. I was overwhelmed with feelings, fears, loneliness, and questions! So many questions! I am happy to be able to say that more and more support is available for the significant other.because of sites like TG Guide, Facebook groups and on-line blogs.

    Each allows open conversation in which shared experiences and feelings can be expressed. My blog at jackanddianestories.blogspot just reached over 5000 views! (I started it to share information and to gauge public interest in the subject matter. ) By the feedback I am receiving, I see how many people are sharing a similar journey. I am not an isolated experience. I have also found that being there for others, reaching out, and sharing experiences is helping others.

    Sharing experiences makes a difference. Thank you for what you share with me.

    GreenShade
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  7. GreenShade added a post in a topic Shoes   

    If you care to, check my blog at jackanddianestories.blogspot - I have a couple of posts that might be helpful, and a video on how to size your foot! Also bit.ly/HSeZaP
    GreenShade
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  8. GreenShade added a post in a topic HRC Corporate Equality Index 2014   

    Thanks for posting this Lori! I have to agree with MonicaPz! We are living in an ever-changing world. We have to hope it changes for the better.
    GreenShade
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  9. GreenShade added a post in a topic Questions Some Significant Others Have...Comments?   

    Thank you, Bonnie! Well said - helpful perspective towards understanding - Your responses show the insight that a partner needs to know to be able to balance what may be happening for them.... TU! again -

    GreenShade
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  10. GreenShade added a post in a topic Invitation for Significant Others   

    Hi, LOLwithWendy!! Welcome to TG Guide. It is a great forum for asking questions and finding support. Always willing to share information with other SO's. Again, welcome.
    GreenShade
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  11. GreenShade added a topic in Significant Others   

    Questions Some Significant Others Have...Comments?
    I thought it might be helpful to post some of the types of questions that female partners of TS individuals (M>F or F>M) going through transition may have. I hope it might add to awareness -

    1. "Since coming out as TS M>F my husband spends a lot of time on line looking at half-naked photos. He>She did not do this before. What does this mean?"

    2. "Have you noticed increased aggressive behavior from your TS spouse since starting hormonal therapy?"

    3. "He says he loves me and wants to be with me for the rest of our lives but he has asked me if we can have an open relationship. I want to be with him, but I do not want to have an open relationship and told him so. What do you think this means?"

    4. "He has come out to me, and to his family, but he says I cannot tell my family or my friends, yet. We all live in the same town. I don't know how to handle this, and worry about when and how my family might find out. What do I do?"

    As a significant other, if these questions came up, how did you handle them? TS, can you shed light on thoughts regarding any of the situations above? THANK YOU!
    • 2 replies
    • 45 views
  12. GreenShade added a post in a topic Share where you found support in your community   

    I am finding that on-line groups are few and far between...TG Guide is a great platform for asking questions and finding answers. I encourage the TS with cisgender partners to check out this site. While on FB there are a couple of groups which are very supportive, I often think when I hear questions there, that having the question asked HERE would elicit so many great responses from TS individuals that could help answer questions a cisgender might have.
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  13. GreenShade added a post in a topic TG m2f partners support on here is there one?   

    As I continue to search for support groups for the cisgender involved in a relationship (marital or otherwise) with a TS are few and far between -- still. I wish I could say otherwise.

    TG Guide is a great platform for the significant other to ask questions and possibly find relevant answers.

    I encourage the TS who has come out to their partners to introduce them to this site for support.

    I have discovered a couple of cisgender support groups on Facebook. The questions are often similar but overwhelmingly express the desire to be supportive to their TS mate whether it is a M>F or F>M and to make their relationships work. To me, I feel knowing this should be hugely encouraging to the transitioning TS.

    The cisgender coming onto these sites are often confused by the 'coming out' of their partner, and express they do not always know what their partner needs from them, but they want to understand and be supportive. The cisgender individuals I have spoken to, have not stopped loving their partner because they have come out as TS. Rather, they express their love for the individual.

    Open communication with the TS is extremely important to the cisgender. Too often, however, the cisgender does not know how to ask the questions without feeling they may offend their TS partner. As the TS, being as clear as you can be, in expressing your needs to your partner, could be helpful in the process of your transition for your cisgender who desires to support you. Be ready for the hard questions. Be open and honest.

    I am hearing the complaint of the cisgender partner of a general feeling of exclusion in the processes. "I feel invisible." A partner can begin to feel 'invisible" to the TS and friends and family once the TS comes 'out' and transition begins because so much attention is on you and your change. This can add to the cisgender's feeling of isolation in your process, it can create sense of abandonment by you, by others, and adds to the cisgender's sense of loss. For the cisgender, your transition toys with the sense of mortality. They are loosing you as you were and there is perceptual, psychological and physical loss that comes with your transition. A 'death' of sorts.

    Keep in mind that your TS transition creates many questions in the mind of the cisgender. Not just about you, but also about themselves. Many have children either with the TS, or extended family. Other questions come up.

    Primary question -- it isn't about 'how will our sex life change?', or 'how do I tell my family.?'...it is more personal, internal and encompasses adaptation and understanding. More often than not, what I see is selfless love of you.

    You are not alone, and neither is your partner. Support is here for you both.
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  14. GreenShade added a post in a topic What's It Like Growing Up With A Transgender Dad? Sharon Shattuck Knows.   

    For Sharon - That must have been very difficult for you. My wish for you is that now, with time, and community, and generally more information out there, that it has become easier for you.. Thank you for sharing.
    GreenShade
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  15. GreenShade added a post in a topic What in the World Were You thinking ?????   

    When I met J I was attracted to "his" wit, sense of humor, and intelligence. I really wanted companionship, and a "good relationship" One that was fun and on a different level than I had experienced as a divorced single mom with young children...and the muscle-contained by leather, 'testosterone driven' guys I had been meeting. J was different. I wasn't physically attracted to him, I will say. I was physically attracted to 'the other type' of guy. J, was 'different'. A professional, he was well educated, smart, active, energetic, and fun to be with. I did not see him as gay or effeminate, but I did think of him as erudite and eccentric. We had a lot of interests in common, and intellectually thought much the same. We became friends. I enjoyed him for him. He wasn't looking for a one-night-stand. He seemed to want a relationship. To me that was the initial draw. His inner unhappiness presented on and off over time, but his inner truth did not come out or show until six years into the relationship. While I had no 'clue' he felt the way he did, when he did come out, it never occurred to me that it was 'wrong' or 'taboo'... rather, I just didn't understand the phenomena...its meaning, its origin, etc. The only TS I had ever seen was walking in the Tenderloin, too much makeup, big hair, and on the prowl. But that wasn't the J I knew. So I was very confused for quite awhile. J's transition became a journey of discovery for both of us.
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  16. GreenShade added a post in a topic What about the family   

    i can only speak from my own experience. When J came out, of course 'he' wanted to tell everyone. If J could have dressed in drag and shown up at the door in full female dress and said "Whola!!" when the door opened, he wouldn't have been happier. But I knew it couldn't happen that way. I did not know how my children would take it. So I sat down (without J there) with the kids and told them what he wanted to do. Then we had a family talk about what it all meant, and what changes may be coming over the next months. As a family, our experience was several years ago, when little was known and less was seen when it came to being trans. I was very concerned that the kids would not understand, particularly the little ones. As for the older boys, I did not know how they would respond, and was concerned. The younger ones saw J as a father figure, the older ones, as a fun friend. There was that 'awkward' period of time, it wasn't a moment, or an hour, or a week... probably a few weeks went by before they all accepted J's change, and as J came out, and the persona morphed, there were awkward moments, missed pronouns, giggles and comments. But, I was surprised. My oldest, then about 21 immediately said, ""I am not surprised, that would explain....." Another just looked in disbelief, and squirmed. I don't know that he really fully accepted J after the transition, but he did show J respect, while keeping his distance. The youngest son said, "Really? and went into a fit of giggles as a 8 year old might, and my daughter said, "That's why he didn't care if I painted his fingernails pink. He's a girl!" Breaking into smiles and laughter. Each initially had a look of wide-eyed surprise on their faces, but quite truthfully, they all handled the news much better than I did. The surprise of it seemed to quiet down a lot just as soon as they realized that J hadn't left, still joked with them and made efforts to engage them in conversation and activities, just as 'he' always had. Kids, are very resilient.
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  17. GreenShade added a post in a topic Hetero Cisgender Man asks, "If I stay with _____(F2M) does it mean I am 'gay'?"   

    Thank you. While I write my posts as a hetero cisgender female about my own experience with J, M2F, I realize that there is another view, that of the man's experience as husband or partner with a woman transitioning F2M. I hope by posting this topic it will encourage their voices to be heard. Again, I feel so much of acceptance is in understanding. Yes, FB has some groups for hetero cisgender significant others. To me, it shows people want to discuss. I hope my sharing here helps start the discussion here and provides support to the TS and their loved ones.
    GreenShade
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  18. GreenShade added a topic in Significant Others   

    Hetero Cisgender Man asks, "If I stay with _____(F2M) does it mean I am 'gay'?"
    I remembered questioning my relationship with J. I am a hetero cisgender female, sharing my story with TG Guide members, and hope that you might find some support in your own situation from my post.

    Partner to J, a man who transitioned M2F,I found his coming out and then his transition caused me to question my own sexual preference. I struggled with societal views and judgments, and wondered how I would be perceived in the relationship if I stayed. I wondered what our sexual relationship would be like on the other side of J's transition M2F.

    If you are a heterosexual cisgender male, and "she" becomes "he" (F2M) your sex life will change. You may find yourself in a a homosexual/gay sexual relationship. Do you wonder, if you stay, and you still find pleasure and satisfaction in your relationship with your partner that it means you are a homosexual, gay, or, bisexual? In my own situation, I wondered, will that mean I am a lesbian? After much thought and angst, I concluded, maybe, I am simply, "bicapable".

    "Bicapable" is a term I coined to describe the relationship between an SO and "A PARTICULAR person (husband/wife/partner) who transitions M2F or F2M. THIS partner whom you have established a sexual relationship with as a "he or, as a she", and with whom you have a "HISTORY". I believe it is possible to have a gratifying sexual intimate relationship to each others mutual satisfaction, after "he transitions to female, or, she transitions to male" because you know and understand each others emotional and physical needs. At the same time, you know in yourself, that in any other circumstance, presented with a homosexual/gay sexual encounter or relationship, that you would have no sexual interest. This is what I mean by "bicapable".

    So many variables make up one's own ability to enjoy being with another person in an intimate way.
    It is no one's business but that of the two of you with regard to how you express your sexual nature when together. In any relationship, it is the couple that defines what that is. Self-exploration, curiosity, and experimentation can go a long way to contributing to personal growth. And, I believe a relationship can grow and flourish if done with mutual respect, self-awareness, consent, and care for another person.

    My suggestion is to talk to your partner about your needs, likes, dislikes, fears, and to be honest, and sensitive to your partners needs as well. You might be surprised at what you discover about yourself, and your partner. Could you discover you are a gay? Maybe. But you may come to realize that by nature, you are not gay, but with THIS person, in THIS relationship, you are bicapable. Thoughts?
    • 5 replies
    • 75 views
  19. GreenShade added a post in a topic Hetero Cisgender asks, "If I stay with ___(M2F), does it mean I am a lesbian?"   

    Thanks! It worked "for me"....
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  20. GreenShade added a topic in Significant Others   

    Hetero Cisgender asks, "If I stay with ___(M2F), does it mean I am a lesbian?"
    Recently, a hetero cisgender asked me the above question. I remembered questioning my relationship with J. As a hetero cisgender partner to a man who transitioned M2F, his transition caused me to question my own sexual preference. I struggled with societal views and judgments, and wondered how I would be perceived in the relationship if I stayed. I wondered what our sexual relationship would be like on the other side of J's transition. My comment to her question follows based on my own experience.

    If you are a heterosexual female, and "he" becomes "she" your sex life will change. You may find yourself in a lesbian sexual relationship. Do you wonder, like I did, that if you stay, and you find pleasure and satisfaction in your relationship with your partner if that means you are a lesbian? or, bisexual? I thought, maybe, I am simply, "bicapable".

    "Bicapable" is a term I coined to describe the relationship between an SO and "A PARTICULAR person (husband/partner) who transitions M2F. THIS partner whom you have established a sexual relationship with as a "he", and with whom you have a "HISTORY". I believe it is possible to have a gratifying sexual intimate relationship to each others mutual satisfaction, after "he" becomes "she" because you know and understand each others needs. At the same time, you know in yourself, that in any other circumstance, presented with a lesbian sexual encounter or relationship, that you would have no sexual interest. This is what I mean by "bicapable".

    So many variables make up one's own ability to enjoy being with another person in an intimate way.
    It is no one's business but that of the two of you with regard to how you express your sexual nature when together. In any relationship, it is the couple that defines what that is. Self-exploration, curiosity, and experimentation can go a long way to contributing to personal growth. And, I believe a relationship can grow and flourish if done with mutual respect, self-awareness, consent, and care for another person.

    My suggestion was to talk to her partner about her needs, likes, dislikes, fears, and to be honest, and sensitive to her partners needs as well. I said, "You might be surprised at what you discover about yourself, and your partner. Could you discover you are a lesbian? Maybe. But you may come to realize that by nature, you are not a lesbian, but with THIS person, in THIS relationship, you are bicapable. Thoughts?
    • 6 replies
    • 91 views
  21. GreenShade added a post in a topic Questions From Spouses/Significant Others Of A Person Who Identifies As A Transgender Person Or Is A Transitioning Transsexual   

    My first reaction to learning J's desire to be M2F - J's responses:

    "What?" A look of apprehension and sadness.

    Then came, a flurry of questions -
    "Are you gay?" " No."
    "Have you had sex with men?" A look of unease.
    "Have you told anyone else?" A look of unease.
    "What does this mean?" A look of anger at my questions.
    "Are you interested in men?" "No!" he begins to pace.
    "Why are you with me?" No answer.
    "You have lied to me all of this time?" "I didn't mean to."
    "Does anyone else know?" Head nods 'yes'.
    "Do you know how this makes me feel?" A look of exasperation.
    "Have you gone out in public dressed as female? Where?" Head shake, 'yes', "private events".

    Then, J tore the wig from his head, and threw the 3 inch heels across the room, saying...."You should have known!"

    When I look back at that evening, when J told me, and remember the confusion I felt, as my mind went in a shocked, whirlpool spin. Coulda, shoulda, --- but I had no clue!!

    If J gave any words of reassurance, I didn't hear them. When I look back, I only remember his anger at my questions and non-acceptance. I realized later, that telling me was the hardest thing he had ever had to do.

    I cried until there were no tears left -- Then, I decided I had to try to understand what it was he was saying. What did this mean? Why did he want to do this? Ultimately, I needed to know where I stood in it all. Did I mean anything to him? What did this mean to our relationship? Could I stay? Should I stay? I know many women would have left. I felt our relationship was too important to give up that easy.

    I embarked on my own journey and asked questions that ultimately only I could answer.

    For many significant others, it is an arduous journey. It was for me. Wanting to be here for others, is why I am here on this site...to lend support, answer questions, and share what I discovered...and, to let you know, that while it may not feel like it at this moment, you will be ok -- conquering your fears, and reaching out, can be the hardest part of all of it....

    You are not alone,
    GreenShade
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  22. GreenShade added a post in a topic HIV - unwitting exposure   

    Living in SF HIV has, since the epidemic began, it has always been a heartfelt concern. Working in hospitals I remember when I saw report, after report cross my desk, and realized that 'something was going on" . ....but it was a few more months before enough information came together that HIV was identified, and seen for what it was.

    As a het significant other of someone I believed was also het and being in a committed relationship, I had a sense of safety, and gratitude that it "couldn't happen to me". At the time of his admission, we had been having unprotected sex for approximately four years. I had been tested and was negative before I entered into the relationship. What did his disclosure mean to my future?

    Some statistics report that in the US, 84% of women who contract HIV have done so through heterosexual sex exposure.

    My experience may or may not resonate with others. It has left an indelible mark on me, and sad memories of friends who were taken too soon--male and female.

    Knowing that tests are available to determine status, and that medications are available which while not a cure, can extend quality of life for someone who contracts the disease still needs to be "put out there"....What distresses me is I can remember when there was more media attention given to prevention and cure...I don't see as much anymore, and I feel that more attention and continued awareness is needed. Being able to talk about this on the forum I feel may be a helpful reminder to others.

    GreenShade
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  23. GreenShade added a topic in Significant Others   

    HIV - unwitting exposure
    No one wants to contract HIV. I am somewhat unsure how to post this, but thought it important to share my own experience. I will depend on our moderators to determine its appropriateness.

    As a heterosexual female in what I believed to be an exclusive committed relationship, I would never have expected that J had been involved in 'risky sexual behavior". However, as I eventually discover, while trying to determine his sexual identity, a few years before meeting me, he had.

    He did not tell me because he was afraid to out himself. Because of fear, he had not been tested.

    There is a good chance that when you tell your SO/wife/partner that you want to become female, that her first reaction is going to be "Are you gay?" Maybe you are, maybe you have experimented along the way...and maybe you are not. However, one of her next logical thoughts (and they come in rapid succession!) will be "what if?" "Have you had sex with men?" and then, "have I been exposed to HIV and not known it?"

    You know for yourself what your sexual behaviors have been. But if in doubt about your HIV status, if you have had ANY sexual contact male or female outside of your relationship with your SO, and for your OWN health and safety, protected sex or not...

    When you come out. Be ready for this question. Get a test, have the results in hand to show her.

    When J came out ...I couldn't get the test fast enough....and I had to wait for two weeks for a result. Where my mind went in that two weeks you can guess...fear, helplessness, anger, betrayal....and I live in a city and worked in a system where I saw the result of HIV/AIDS every day..... I have children...what would happen to them ....?

    As a het female, in an exclusive, committed relationship, I thought I was safe .... I discovered that we can have a false sense of safety....

    Be careful. Be honest. Get tested if you need to. Fortunately, there are medications now that can be helpful if you catch it....but get tested. Do that for your partner/significant other. Do that for yourself.

    Thanks for listening,
    GreenShade
    • 8 replies
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  24. GreenShade added a post in a topic HIV - unwitting exposure   

    Recently saw an interview with Mathew McConaughey who is starring in a new movie to soon be relased in which he plays a hetero male who finds he has HIV/AIDS. While I don't know the story line, I have interest in the fact that it will bring HIV into discussions again, and the spotlight may shine brightly, if only for a little while, on a disease that needs a true cure.

    Greenshade
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  25. GreenShade added a post in a topic Welcome New Forum Moderator GreenShade   

    Thank you, Gennee!!
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