Wow. I gotta say I am not here much, but out of just about all the websites I'm on nowadays, this interface is so open, clean, and loaded with stuff. Usually "modernized" forums gets cluttered, but this is "clean" -- I really really like it.
Hey, I started taking spiro for three months before seeing the endo officially (he kept me on that and added estradiol).
Yes, I noticed lots of changes in the first few months before estrogen. The skin sensivity and boob/nipple sensitivity was one of the most obvious. Don't fret over it, it seems par for the course. I was amazed at how sensitive my body got.
And it gets even more intense on estro. btw, if you are doing electrolysis, it might not hurt while you're not on hormones, but it will probably hurt worse and worse with increased hormone dosages; if you can get painkillers and numbing creams prescribed by your doc, you should. It can be pretty brutal.
As far as the rest goes, I think we each make a choice for ourselves. We decide whether the risk and possible anxieties of transition outweigh not transitioning. We live with the results of our decisions.
If someone decides it's not worth the risk, then good: Enjoy your life.
If someone decides it is, then good as well: Enjoy your life.
The common denominator?
Enjoy your life.
When I started transition, I was 6'0 with a size 46-48 men's jacket, and I weighed 240 pounds. I am still 6' tall and weigh above 200 pounds, although my top has shrunk from a 2x woman's to sometimes a 1x. I do not look as big as I am, in some ways, people tell me I inhabit a "smaller" and skinnier space, most people would probably think me about 180lbs.
I am big enough, though, that I still have anxiety over going out. I hate being the tallest woman around, I feel like people stare at me sometimes... and yet I know most of the negativity is in my head. Probably much of the time they're looking at my height, not wondering about my gender. Still, it's a price I will have to pay because I made the choice to transition, and sometimes I can still get anxious in public, I *really* am self-conscious and can't stand the idea that people might be looking at me and judging (which sometimes makes me antsy at work)...
... but you know what? It was worth it.
Life before was utter misery and I was done living.
Now I like who I am and can look in the mirror, at last.
Conservative Christians don't really think God likes people to be born with deformities or to get cancer or for wars to occur or for people to be unhappy with their marriages or whatever else.
The basic gist is that they work backwards: They start with the belief that transition or trans behavior is an abomination, therefore God doesn't approve of it and it must be sinful, and therefore since God is a good God, he offers ways to change or will allow people to change if they repent, regardless of what their natural inclinations might be.
It's about controlling one's behavior and then hopefully evoking a change in the heart if "you just don't do it anymore" or via some miraculous transformation. It's not about whether it's fair for people to be born with trans inclinations. (And most of the time they opt for the environmental model of trans development anyway, which aligns better with their desire to believe it's a behavior and thus a choice, rather than inborn.)
If you want to find people who start with collecting evidence from life experience and the world and then build a perspective based on that, do not go to religiously minded folks: They start with their value/doctrinal statements, then fit the world and their experiences INTO it, not the other way around.
* * * *
My experiences with the church are getting interesting.
I never came full out in my church.
I left for religious reasons mostly (I realized I didn't believe much of what the outspoken people in my church believed and despite how much I did love them, I was too psychologically weak to be in that situation without withering).
About the time I left was also about the time I no longer felt shame before God in being trans. I felt released and accepted by God and I felt like he was accessible again.
So I don't know what furor would have arisen in that congregation, which was growing with families in their 30's and younger, from a mix of unchurched, discplaced Catholic, and evangelical background. Since I was very prominent (people still occasionally send me stuff to ask me to come back, if they don't know my situation; or they talk about how much they miss my musical gifts), I was very afraid it would rip the place apart... and that would be especially bad with my kids and spouse still going there and being involved.
I know some people have said stupid judgmental things to my wife; I chalk most of it up to ignorance. THe few people who really knew me, who I went to for friendship as well as trusted spiritually, didn't really blink an eye when I told them. They all basically said, "THis is bigger than us to be able to judge, we can't tell whether you're doing the right or wrong thing and it's none of our business anyway; we love you and know your heart and that it's good and how much you have fought to take care of the people in your life; we don't know what this means for the future; we will pray for you and your family; please don't stop talking to us." This past week I saw the one couple after months of missing each other, and they saw pics of me as Jen and said I was welcome in their house no matter what I looked like, they're very supportive.
So I don't know what people would ACTUALLY believe if it came out publicly and hard lines have to be drawn. I don't like being that much in the middle, though, or cause disrest.
My point also, I suppose, is that even in a religious congregation, the beliefs are not uniform. The more vocal people tend to dominate just because they have loud mouths and don't mind conflict; but I think even in the church itself people are not taking the hard conservative line as much as it seems, if it comes up in their personal lives. It's also easy to judge someone you don't know; once you know them, you realize how much more complicated it all is.
Hair systems are a (more expensive) option too but with better results. I will be looking more into them in the next few months. In-house consultations are good too, if you want hair that matches your face and skin coloration.
As far wig styles, there are a few places online that do "virtual makeup/hair" for you. I have an account at MakeoverSolutions.com, where you can upload a photo of your face and "try out" lots of wigs and TONS of actual brand names and shades of makeup. Short of doing it physically, I have found it very helpful for hair and cosmetics testing.
Human hair or a human hair / synthetic blend seem to be the better way to go. Purely synthetic wigs can sometimes look fake, the light hits them a different way... at least the longer ones. There are lots of different types of caps now too, that look like scalp through the part of the wig.
I talked to Clare at WigGoddess.com too some already, online. She's dealt with T people (has a few T friends) and seems very enthusiastic and warm even though I did not get quite as much information as I had hoped online from her. She might be able to give some good advice too.
LANSING, Mich. - Gov. Jennifer Granholm has issued an order that bars discrimination against state workers based on their "gender identity or expression," which protects the rights of those who behave, dress or identify as members of the opposite sex...
Have you ever had the experience of moving through a cool lake on the surface, and suddenly you'll feel a warm pocket of water, a place where the sun heated it up unexpectedly? And then once you move another few steps, you are back in a spot where the water turns chill again?
That's what this all feels like to me. I move in some circles and literally everyone I meet is decent about the whole thing, and supportive.
And then I go some other place (for example, the messages boards at Oprah.com) and find a bunch of complete transphobic clueless wonders who don't even realize how offensive and ignorant they truly are.
It's like "like" gravitates to "like"; all the lampreys and leeches and bottom-feeders group together, basking in their ignorance, and there is not much to do but swim to another location where they're vacated and only good fish are trundling about.
I think you are right to have concerns, and it is important for you to know what you might expect in the future, since you have children to look out for.
How long have you been dating this man? How much time have you both had to see if this is really what he desires?
And why did the other relationships not work out? Was it because he was a transsexual and just was not happy being a man; or were there marriages issues that are "normal" and he just cannot seem to get past them?
I think it can be dangerous to expect someone else to "fix" you -- in terms of being a transsexual, he cannot put the burden of that decision on you, because you are going to fail him. You are only human, you will make mistakes, you both will have some conflict in your relationship, and if you are the reason he is not transitioning, then every time you fight, he will want to change his sex. He needs to stay male because he thinks it is best for him, or things will fail.
And do you think he is truly marriage material for you? (aside from the transsexual thing?) What issues do you have aside from the TS stuff?
Well, this is also typical behavior for straight men looking at "normal porn." They don't want to, but they have an attraction for it. So they'll look, then get angry with themselves or want to hide it, and so they delete the history.
Because he was being treated as a female in the relationship? (?) What exactly was freeing about it?
He could be. I am not sure. More, he just sounds confused. I cannot really tell from just this information, but you have good concerns, considering that you might marry him.
I would love to share with you what I know. I will PM you my e-mail address, in case you want to talk more about it or feel uncomfortable posting details on the open forum. (Or you can just post here, if you are okay with that.)
Not that it matters, except for the sake of argument. I understand both viewpoints.
On one hand, fairness is important. Often it seems that neither person wanted the divorce to occur, and both entered the relationship on good faith -- they believed and tried to make it work. However, later, one person realized that they just couldn't do it any longer, without either the relationship being so false as to be a corpse or without one person ending their life altogether in a situation like this.
On the other hand, yes, it's still true that the problem is stemming from the one individual (even if they are not trying to be selfish or malignant), and the other one -- despite their faults -- is still feeling blind-sided by the whole thing and is losing everything they wanted in life as well, because of the other person's decision.
This is purely idealistic on my part, but I would hope that both sides would take responsibility to show love for the other. The TS person would feel terrible about what was happening and want to care for the spouse as much as possible. The spouse might be hurt but also would understand the intentions of the TS person and that they didn't mean for any of this to happen. Thus, a breakup could be amicable.
I totally understand what it is like to want to be fair, and retain "honor," and "pay" for the fact that it is sort of "my fault" things have happened; but at the same time, I understand that intense guilt, personal unforgiveness, and being unable to accept grace from my spouse if they want to offer it is a bad thing. I would offer everything I could in fairness, but I would also make room for the spouse to not take it all and to be kind in return.
I'm sorry about what you are going through. So many fears are wrapped up in rejection, and here you thought things were actually going well... and then this.
When I read your post, what I intuit is that your wife was okay *and* positive at first. Or, at the least, she might have been a little unsettled about things and decided the best way for her to get over it was to take charge and tackle it head-on by helping you dress. (Some people enjoy feeling in control of the situation and prefer not to resist or wait.)
And then what it seems to me is that, over time, she realized she was not liking what she was feeling and experiencing and how things were going. Just as you were learning how to be Candice and changing and feeling things out as you went, so was she... except that she was moving in the OTHER direction.
Dealing with the possibility of transition and with my wife's concerns, I keep telling myself that she is also in a hard position and that just as I am trying to "find" myself and decide what I can live with and what I cannot, she is also in exactly the same boat. And so I need to give her as much space to explore and decide, as much as I ask her to give me space.
It sounds like your wife decided that she could not live with you as a woman. It's not what she wanted. She just did not know until after she tried it and tried to be in control of the process.
This is all just imo (from your post), and I know this does not fix the pain either. I'm so sorry. I can tell it came as a huge shock and that you are really hurting (as I think she is too). I hope you can make it through today, and tomorrow... and onwards. Please continue to post and let us know what is going on, so we know how to encourage you.
I do not have a great deal of compassion (in the sense of "enabling") someone who commits a crime of this magnitude and then tries to force others to foot the bill for something the rest of us daily work (and save and sacrifice for) to achieve responsibly.
I think there's enough gray here that it's difficult to determine the true motivations for this person. Most likely, it's a jumbled mess and lots of confusion, resulting in their current situation...
Like some of the other people here, if someone offered to pay for part or all of transition costs for me (and was doing it out of compassion and their own free will, understanding what they were doing), yes, I would certainly consider accepting it. But I would not demand it from people.
(Still, I also would not begrudge my brothers and sisters who are in countries with national health care who are fortunate enough to have part or all of their transition covered by public funds... since that is what those countries have decided as a whole is proper and right.)
I don't know. Things always break down in situations such as this one. I understand what it's like to be dealing with this... but why should someone in effect be rewarded by committing a crime... especially one of this magnitude?
It is rather ironic, though, that the money being spent on arguing the case might eventually far exceed the cost of actually paying for gender-transition related surgeries.
(I would have used the "Sick" smiley, but I couldn't find one!)
Well, I was offering the most "positive" criticism I have heard. Of course some Christians are negative about it and take it into the gutter, of TG people purposefully choosing to "rebel against God" and buying into this awful perversion or something like that...
BTW, yes, I know who Crowley is too. We have quite an intellectually eclectic crowd here! :D
And besides all that... I just found the post(s) incoherent.
Maybe it's just me, though.
It is funny you mention the Christian reformers. Coming from a conservative Christian background, I spent many long years looking through those things, listening to the arguments, examining the experiences of others who have turned away from CD'ing and/or say they can deal with the GID. LeeAnn Payne, Jerry Leach, Theophostic Prayer, the whole thing...
I don't know. I am glad I did the searching and tried different things, just to be sure with myself, but the guilt has been sort of fading for me in being what I am, and those things just did not resolve my issues. If God is real and is God as defined by those Christian thoughts, then perhaps some people can find contentment where they are -- it is none of my business to tell someone else what they can or cannot live with in their lives. I just know that the solutions that worked for them do nothing for me, long-term, so I am on a different road...
[For what it is worth, I think the "traditional Christian answer" involves simply that the Fall happened (in the Garden of Eden) and so creation is "broken" in a sense, which is why disease exists and why people are born with muddled feelings about their gender and/or orientation and war happens and bad things generally happen to good people. This tends to be the typical answer I think Christians will provide, and is probably the best one that could be mustered...]