Last Tuesday Evening I Joined the 41%

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Posted

TRIGGER ALERT: this post talks a lot about depression and suicide, so please don’t read it if it will disturb you.

 

I have had depression since pretty much forever.  I think it is largely centered on my transgender feelings and gender dysphoria but it’s hard to be certain.  And although I have come a long way in the last two years in understanding and accepting myself as you'll read here I clearly have a ways to go.  

My wife has come to a level of acceptance of me, but it falls short. For example she says it’s okay for me to dress “in my room” (if she’s at home) but that feels like I’m being isolated in a cell, like don’t ask don’t tell.  But she does occasionally see me, like last Saturday morning when she joined me in my bed as I was wearing a cotton nightgown that I sleep in. We snuggled and it felt great to hold each other. 

On Sunday mornings we typically go out for breakfast and while eating I told her how much I appreciated our togetherness the previous morning.  I meant it but I also hoped that my expressing this might help her acceptance of me.  She said she liked it too but I could tell that it was a little half-hearted.  I was hurt.  But I didn't say anything because I don't want to push her into a corner.  I'm always afraid of outright rejection.

Later that morning I was working on our annual tax preparations which is always a huge hassle because most of the work involves building up an accounting of her business – which she just doesn't do during the year.  It’s hours of work on my part. We can’t get a CPA to do it because her records and paperwork are incomplete. I do the best I can with what we have, and come up with what I think is a fair and defensible estimate.  We exchanged some angry words that morning about something silly and I was hurt even more as I considered how I am spending hours over several weekends just trying to do the annual tax work.  Shouldn't she appreciate my efforts for her and us?  But later, as I thought about it more I really came down hard on myself, as it seemed like my anger undermined - yet again - whatever progress we had made regarding my transgender nature so, once again, I was back at Square One, which is always a very depressing place to be.  So I was depressed about being depressed and for standing up for myself. Talk about a no win situation.  

Later that evening we talked a little. I told her that I was in a lot of pain. She said she is in a lot of pain too.  I told her that I understood, but I was pretty sure my pain was more than hers. Kind of stupid sounding I know but I knew what I was contemplating but I didn't want to try to one-up her.  We all know that's not useful. 

Now, “they” say that suicide ideation is something that most people don’t do. Trans people do it lots more.  Me?  I do it a lot.  If not daily then certainly every week or two. And over the years I’ve done a fair amount of investigation about how I might do it. I have the book “Final Exit” for example, which has a method that I’m sure would work well but it’s a lot of stuff to acquire.  I find suicide very scary.  I don't want pain of course, and I also don’t want to experience some sort of last second regret right after jumping or pulling a trigger.  Nor do I want to hurt anyone else. 

So in the end I figured out a way that I thought would work for me.  I’d take some pretty strong sleeping pills, lay propped up in bed, and when I was about to go to sleep, I’d stand, put a noose around my neck, and then if I fell so asleep that I didn’t feel anything, fine. It would be over and done with.  And if I had a change of heart I could simply take it all off, sleep it off in bed, and act as if it never happened.  

So two days later, still feeling the same level of pain and hurt and no way out, I started the process.  Taking the pills was lots easier than I expected.  Gee, they just went down.  I had the noose all ready, propped myself up on a pair of pillows in bed, and waited to get sleepy.  Well, I just fell asleep before I realized I needed to stand and get ready. I woke up the next morning so groggy and unsteady I could hardly get dressed for work.  I went to work, attended a conference call, spoke coherently (I guess) to the customer, but fell asleep during the call after my portion was over.  I realized I was useless that day so I went back home to sleep it off. My wife found me like that and, worried, called my therapist, who saw me later that afternoon one-on-one, and that evening also, adding my wife.  I can’t express how hard it was to hear my wife sob when she learned how close I came to not being here any longer.

Now, I’m looking at setting up an appointment with a psychiatrist for depression drugs, and having more frequent meetings with my therapist. Last night my wife and I watched TV and had dinner. It’s as if none of this happened.  But it did, and there’s nothing that undoes what I did. And it’s not as if I can tell anyone. Like at work, when certain jerks there pull my chain I can’t explain that I’ve been in a bad place lately and would they just cut me some slack?  And I can’t take time off of work either.  

So why am I writing this?  It’s not to say to readers that I feel your pain because I can't really know. Nor do I want your pity.  I guess it’s just to say that indeed, these feelings can happen where the pain feels so great that it just doesn’t feel worth it any more. But then those feelings can pass and we get to watch TV, have dinner, and enjoy a nice glass of Petite Syrah.  

Lots of people come and go to TGGuide. When they disappear we never know what happened.  Well, if you find yourself in a similar situation to mine I add my voice to the plea that you reach out for help. Call a suicide hotline – there’s lots of them. Call a therapist. Or 911.  There are no easy answers, I know that. But together we are a community and I find a lot of solace in that.  

The fact is that we are – all of us – beautiful people in our own right. Okay, we don’t fit into the binary that the general population is used to. So what?  We are gradually coming into our own in society. We’ve come a long way, still have a long way to go, but it’s a heck of a lot better now than it’s been in decades. So let's step into the sunshine together. I'll stay around if you will.

Love,

Emma

P.S. Please let me know if you think post isn’t helpful. I’m happy to delete or edit it. 

 

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Hiya Emma. Darling, Please Do Not delete any of Your Post. Sweetheart, I have Personally made 3 Serious Suicide Attempt's, in the Past. This was between Mid-August 1988, and Late-February 1996. This was because I wanted to " Come-Out ", but, there was Not the Acceptance. Well having " Come-Out ", on 30th. April, 2015, as a Male-to-Female; Transitioning; Transsexual; which was like having a " Massive-Weight ", " Lifted-Off "  Both of My Shoulder's. Now My Own Wife, has been cheating on Me, for over 1 1/2 Year's, with other Male's, and other Female's. She is Not Accepting of Me being Transsexual, although She was the Person whom I "Came-Out " to. I started to buy Undies and Clothes, and wearing them, and being " Out ', in Public, the Day after " Coming-Out ".  The thing is though Emma, that Gender Dysphoria, is Not understood by a lot of People. You and I, and so many " Trans' People "  do Struggle so much with this. Emma, want I Am going to ask of You is, Please Honey Please Seek Help, if You feel Suicidal, Either Now, or Any Time in the Future. Emma, Being a " Trans' Female " Myself, I Am here for You Love. Any time that You would like to talk, let Me Know, and if You would like to talk with Me by Phone, I will give You My Mobile Number, Privately, if You ask Me for it. Emma, Please Take Special Care Honey, because I Care. With My Very Best Wishes, Love Stephanie. xx. 

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I spent my Junior High years thinking about suicide.  Trying to figure out a foolproof way to do it quick and painlessly.  So yeah, I believe we think of it a LOT.  Sadly too many of us do it.  Thankfully, some of us don't succeed.  I hope one day, none of us succeed.  I hope one day, none of us will be trying or even thinking about it.

Allegedly, we are all supposed to have control of our own destinies.  I think that only works for the few, the lucky and/or the privileged.  Whether anyone wants to admit it or not, for most people, society plays a large part in what we do or don't do - whether a gender issue is involved or not.  But if it is, society seems to play an even larger part in what we do or don't do.

When it comes to trans people, I believe society in general is directly responsible for so many of us considering, trying or succeeding in committing suicide.  I also believe that most of the depression and other emotional/mental issues we suffer are  directly related to how we are treated for being trans, not because we are trans.  I believe that for many, depression and emotional issues are exacerbated by substance abuse and self-harm.  I think for many, these coping mechanism are an attempt to blot out the fact that we are trans and/or the conditions to which we're relegated for being trans.

Until society changes, all we can do is try to be supportive of each other, and seek out those who support us.  Suicide is not something that's been discussed too much here, despite the fact that suicide rates among TGBL people, and especially trans people, are disproportionately high compared to other groups.  It's sort of like, we know about it, but we don't talk about it.

Though it deeply pains my heart as to what caused this thread to be created, I hope this thread can be the "go-to" thread when someone is feeling like they are teetering on the edge of some bottomless pit, where people can shed the hurt they were feeling at the time and pound it out on the keyboard, and make that other thread just for stand-by, just in case, a last resort.

David Michael

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Dear Stephanie and Michael,

Thank you both, so much. We are a community. I wish we could be a closer group but I thank goodness we have what we have. 

Love,

Emma

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Hiya Emma, and Michael. I think that ignorance in Society, about Trans' People, is what is the Problem, or even ignorant People like My Wife, who says that " If You Were Born Male ; You Should Remain Male ; or If You Were Born Female ; You Should Remain Female ! "  She then thinks that it is Okay for Her to Cheat on Me, with Both Male's, and Female's. She also thinks that it is Okay for Her to attack Me, Physically, because I Am a MtoF; Transitioning; Female !  Emma, I do mean it, that if You would like to ring Me, if You need to talk, that the offer is there. Emma, and Michael, You are Both A Great Support, to So Many of Us. Thank You Both Very Much. Take Care, And My Very Best Wishes to Both of You. Hugs, Love Stephanie. xxxx 

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Dear Stephanie,

Thank you for your kind offer but for now, no, I have so much support, I'm overwhelmed! I'm feeling much better and will write a follow up later that I hope might help others who read this in the future.

But for you: I'm very sorry to read about your wife's behavior and hurtful comments and beliefs about you. That is a rejection I don't know how I could deal with. Maybe you could write about it more in another thread? We can then talk about rejection, and especially, ways we might overcome it. Extremely important topic. 

I hope you're well, Stephanie. You're a good friend.

Love,

Emma

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Hiya Emma. You My Lovely, are also a Good Friend. I Am Well Thank You Sweetheart, and I hope that You are Well too. I have an Appointment, at the End of this Week, with Our local Women's Aid, and They have already hinted, that They may even put Me in a Women''s Refuge, because of the violence, metred out to Me, by My Wife, and My 2 Oldest Son's. Emma. You and I should do a Joint Blog, sometime soon. We have Both My Darling, been through some Nightmare's.Fortunately, My Best Mate, and My other close Mate, know and understand what I have been going through, and They are sticking by Me, with My Transitioning. Emma, We have Both got vastly important knowledge to pass on. Emma, Thank You for being there, and You know that I Am here for You also Honey. Emma, Speak Soon, Take Care, And My Love, And My Very Best Wishes, Hugs, Love Stephanie. xxxx 

 

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I'm not good with this subject, I never was.  Experience with it isn't making me better with what to say.  But...if you give up, you'll miss all the laughter, all the ah-ha moments of learning something new, all the new things that happen in the world.  I honestly don't know if that is worth it to someone who doesn't want to live anymore, but I would greatly regret missing any of those moments that I could, so it's worth talking about. 

As for your wife, you've often pointed out that you don't get a say in your feelings.  Perhaps you have to accept that she also feels what she feels and can't control it anymore than you can?  You've seen me adapt to Nikki (like I do to everything, I have a highly adaptive fluid personality) but you haven't seen the prices I pay for it.  The chunks of myself that i carve out to fit my new realities without even stopping to think "Why am I doing this?" or the depression I flirt with when I suddenly realize over the years I jettisoned so much of who I am to prevent problems or loss that sometimes I have no idea who I even am anymore.  The horrible, crushing self-doubt if I'm even real anymore, or just a construct I made up to get by and not lose something or be crushed by it.  The confusion of people around me when I have no interest in shared interests I had before or my behaviors and values abruptly change.  There are other prices I can't even conceptualize here to talk about.  Not everyone can do that, or is willing to do that.  Sometimes I think that I should NOT be doing that, but it's how I live in a crazy world that drops sweeping changes on me fairly often.  It may or may not be healthy.   But if you want her to accept your feelings are what they are, you must also give her the same respect even if you don't like those feelings.  She may be equally crushed that you want more as you are that she won't engage in more.  And negotiation will probably have to happen to find some sort of balanced medium.

The only suggestion I can give you is talk, and talk honestly.  From experience, it's painful, and scary, and horrible to start, but it's the only way to know what the situation is, and figure out what to do about it.  Ask yourself why you would rather consider what you did, facing the ultimate unknown, rather than talking it out with her and figuring out where you want to go in your future.  Yes, rejection and change are painful.  I don't dispute that.  But...on the other side of that pain is joy.  You just have to find it.  I can't make anyone want to find it, I know that, but if I could that would be my gift to you.  The WANT to find that joy.  I like knowing you, and I would miss you horribly if you vanished.  *Hugs* 

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Epilogue:  I feel compelled to provide an update and since I know we'll be away this weekend I wanted to do it sooner than later.  

But before I start I want to emphasize that I'm only speaking for myself. At the moment I'm feeling very positive and it's looking like we are making great progress.  But depression and suicidal thoughts are all very individual so please consider that as you read this, especially if you're feeling badly.  

Lots of kind of major milestones for me and my wife since even last Saturday:

  • I met with my gender therapist (Judy), whom I hadn't seen for about six months, on Sunday afternoon.

What an interesting time for me and her.  The first time we met (about 18 months ago) I was so nervous.  But now, feeling much more grounded about my own feelings and identification of being transgender.  We talked for over an hour. She told me that she doesn't see me as suicidal - I'm not depressed enough.  And she 100% confirmed my conclusions that I am transgender.  She kind of went through a checklist, asking questions, and I supplied my immediate responses and it all checked out.  I went on to tell her that as far as I'm concerned, being transgender may be uncommon, but given that we are what we are and that we're born this way, we're as normal as anyone.  She could not agree more.

We talked about what's going on for me and my wife, that I feel such a need to be fully open with her, but I don't want to pressure or rush her, but that her defense mechanism from childhood is to avoid unsettling discussions.  Judy said, well, there's no guarantee that we'd ever work it all out, but my wife and I need to talk.  Thankfully as we ended our meeting my wife texted me saying that she wanted to get out of the house with me for a glass of wine before dinner.  Great timing!

  • Glass of wine with my wife

I ran through everything Judy and I talked about, including that my wife and I need to be cognizant of the challenges we both have in navigating these waters, but that in the scheme of things it's too important to ignore.  It was fantastic that she heartily agreed.  So, I think my crisis kind of underscored how much this affects me, how much we love each other, and that we can't afford to brush things under the carpet. 

  • I met with my regular therapist, on Monday evening.

I was a little concerned that he was upset with me because I hadn't called him when I was in the middle of my crisis the previous week.  No worries, he was as delightful as ever. We talked about my meeting with Judy and upcoming meeting with a psychiatrist (Dan).  Also about my wife and me.  All good.

  • Met with Dan the psychiatrist this morning for 2.5 hours

Goodness, he was expensive and thorough.  I was kind of proud of myself that unlike so many times before with other therapists and doctors I've been so reluctant to talk about my trans feelings, I was 100% open with him from the very start.  What did I have to lose?  If he'd not been supportive I could just leave.  He has very limited familiarity with transgender people but completely understood, and we had a good meeting.   He's now prescribed a very low dose of a drug that we'll soon evaluate to see if a) the side effects are minimal or none, and b) if it is successful in helping me manage my low points.  Perhaps with that I'll be a little more prepared when "the black dog" (as Churchill used to call his depression) starts barking - and we all know it will.

So, my friends, it's all good right now.  We are back on track and I'm committed to calling my therapist if there is a next major crisis. I believe I learned several important things the past two weeks.

Love,

Emma

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Hugs.  Life is learning!  I'm so glad you are doing better.  And seriously, if you ever need to call me!  I think I sent you my number.  I mean it, you can always call me and we can chat about anything you like.  :)  Um...wine conversations may be one sided though, I know nothing about it.   but I still chat about it if it helps! 

Have a great weekend, and I hope everything goes well with your wife.  My best to both of you!

-Bree

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TRIGGER ALERT: this post talks a lot about depression and suicide, so please don’t read it if it will disturb you.

 

I have had depression since pretty much forever.  I think it is largely centered on my transgender feelings and gender dysphoria but it’s hard to be certain.  And although I have come a long way in the last two years in understanding and accepting myself as you'll read here I clearly have a ways to go.  

My wife has come to a level of acceptance of me, but it falls short. For example she says it’s okay for me to dress “in my room” (if she’s at home) but that feels like I’m being isolated in a cell, like don’t ask don’t tell.  But she does occasionally see me, like last Saturday morning when she joined me in my bed as I was wearing a cotton nightgown that I sleep in. We snuggled and it felt great to hold each other. 

On Sunday mornings we typically go out for breakfast and while eating I told her how much I appreciated our togetherness the previous morning.  I meant it but I also hoped that my expressing this might help her acceptance of me.  She said she liked it too but I could tell that it was a little half-hearted.  I was hurt.  But I didn't say anything because I don't want to push her into a corner.  I'm always afraid of outright rejection.

Later that morning I was working on our annual tax preparations which is always a huge hassle because most of the work involves building up an accounting of her business – which she just doesn't do during the year.  It’s hours of work on my part. We can’t get a CPA to do it because her records and paperwork are incomplete. I do the best I can with what we have, and come up with what I think is a fair and defensible estimate.  We exchanged some angry words that morning about something silly and I was hurt even more as I considered how I am spending hours over several weekends just trying to do the annual tax work.  Shouldn't she appreciate my efforts for her and us?  But later, as I thought about it more I really came down hard on myself, as it seemed like my anger undermined - yet again - whatever progress we had made regarding my transgender nature so, once again, I was back at Square One, which is always a very depressing place to be.  So I was depressed about being depressed and for standing up for myself. Talk about a no win situation.  

Later that evening we talked a little. I told her that I was in a lot of pain. She said she is in a lot of pain too.  I told her that I understood, but I was pretty sure my pain was more than hers. Kind of stupid sounding I know but I knew what I was contemplating but I didn't want to try to one-up her.  We all know that's not useful. 

Now, “they” say that suicide ideation is something that most people don’t do. Trans people do it lots more.  Me?  I do it a lot.  If not daily then certainly every week or two. And over the years I’ve done a fair amount of investigation about how I might do it. I have the book “Final Exit” for example, which has a method that I’m sure would work well but it’s a lot of stuff to acquire.  I find suicide very scary.  I don't want pain of course, and I also don’t want to experience some sort of last second regret right after jumping or pulling a trigger.  Nor do I want to hurt anyone else. 

So in the end I figured out a way that I thought would work for me.  I’d take some pretty strong sleeping pills, lay propped up in bed, and when I was about to go to sleep, I’d stand, put a noose around my neck, and then if I fell so asleep that I didn’t feel anything, fine. It would be over and done with.  And if I had a change of heart I could simply take it all off, sleep it off in bed, and act as if it never happened.  

So two days later, still feeling the same level of pain and hurt and no way out, I started the process.  Taking the pills was lots easier than I expected.  Gee, they just went down.  I had the noose all ready, propped myself up on a pair of pillows in bed, and waited to get sleepy.  Well, I just fell asleep before I realized I needed to stand and get ready. I woke up the next morning so groggy and unsteady I could hardly get dressed for work.  I went to work, attended a conference call, spoke coherently (I guess) to the customer, but fell asleep during the call after my portion was over.  I realized I was useless that day so I went back home to sleep it off. My wife found me like that and, worried, called my therapist, who saw me later that afternoon one-on-one, and that evening also, adding my wife.  I can’t express how hard it was to hear my wife sob when she learned how close I came to not being here any longer.

Now, I’m looking at setting up an appointment with a psychiatrist for depression drugs, and having more frequent meetings with my therapist. Last night my wife and I watched TV and had dinner. It’s as if none of this happened.  But it did, and there’s nothing that undoes what I did. And it’s not as if I can tell anyone. Like at work, when certain jerks there pull my chain I can’t explain that I’ve been in a bad place lately and would they just cut me some slack?  And I can’t take time off of work either.  

So why am I writing this?  It’s not to say to readers that I feel your pain because I can't really know. Nor do I want your pity.  I guess it’s just to say that indeed, these feelings can happen where the pain feels so great that it just doesn’t feel worth it any more. But then those feelings can pass and we get to watch TV, have dinner, and enjoy a nice glass of Petite Syrah.  

Lots of people come and go to TGGuide. When they disappear we never know what happened.  Well, if you find yourself in a similar situation to mine I add my voice to the plea that you reach out for help. Call a suicide hotline – there’s lots of them. Call a therapist. Or 911.  There are no easy answers, I know that. But together we are a community and I find a lot of solace in that.  

The fact is that we are – all of us – beautiful people in our own right. Okay, we don’t fit into the binary that the general population is used to. So what?  We are gradually coming into our own in society. We’ve come a long way, still have a long way to go, but it’s a heck of a lot better now than it’s been in decades. So let's step into the sunshine together. I'll stay around if you will.

Love,

Emma

P.S. Please let me know if you think post isn’t helpful. I’m happy to delete or edit it. 

 

​I know Hon, please consider me a friend?

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