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54 yrs old. Still trying to figure myself out.


Nichole Spencer

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As I sit here at my desk dressed as Nichole. I like the way it feels to be dressed as my feminine self. I love my long hair I have grown out. It's kind of scraggly right now as I have had weight loss surgery and one of the side effect is loosing hair. That's will turn around eventually. I have always had very thick curly hair. I love how it looks when I run my straightener through it. I like being able to style it. even though I'm not very good at it yet but I will learn. I have a limited wardrobe but do find the time to dress to express this side of my self. My wife and I work opposite shifts so I just have to be careful to reclaim all the evidence. She is aware of my feminine self but she is absolutely not supportive in any way. I say that but she allows me to wear Pantyhose, tights and leggings (even out in public). Grow my hair long. Wear guy appropriate jewelry (Earrings, Bracelets. I even have some piercings (which I love) that would go either way. I also keep my legs and armpits shaved. I had my chest shaved for the longest time but she has asked my to stop doing that. I'd shave it right now if I could do so without upsetting things.  I believe It's certainly an attempt to compromise with me. I was honest with her when we met. I told her about my Nichole side. But I wasn't dressing at the time and had no desire to do so. That's what I told her and at the time it was the truth. Somewhere along the way the desire came back. I have no idea what changed to bring this back. She did say the other night that if she knew this would come into our lives as much as it has. She's not sure she would have still married me. But she also said we have 18 yr's together and that's a lot of investment. So I'm guessing at this point she's not contemplating divorce. But I do believe she's hoping desperately that I can leave this part of myself in the past. Honestly I'm not so sure that this is even an option at this point. I have been doing or fantasizing about this stuff like so many others since I was 4-5 years old. So it's pretty much sewn into my life fabric so to speak. I am just hoping we can come to some sort of compromise. What that is at this point, I don't know.

On my tv in front of me I have pics and gif's running on a slideshow. The pics/gifs vary through the whole spectrum. Crossdresser's/Transsexuals as well real women, "dressed to kill" as I say and in various sexual situations. Both straight and transsexual. I can enjoy images and videos covering the whole spectrum of sexuality...except. I can't get into gay sex. I means that as 2 guys, However If one is dressed and acting feminine. I'm good. 

I am seeing a therapist to help me sort this all out. From that therapy I have concluded that it started due to my mother. She wasn't the most emotionally available person in the world. I had a sister that come into the world when I was 4. My older sister told me the love moved from me to my baby sister. My father was a soldier and it was during the Korean and Vietnam conflict's so he wasn't around much. So I was going through my early formative years with no male role model and surrounded by females.

As I said, I'm seeing a therapist. It has been very helpful but I'm hoping to use this forum as a means of self exploration and as a source for other people input's and experiences that might help me sort myself out. I am NOT looking for sexual encounters or anything of that nature. So please don't even try. However, If you feel you have experiences/insight that I might find helpful, please feel free to post comments.

 

Thanks for listening.

Nichole Spencer

 

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Nichole, I know this is very difficult to live with, and even more difficult that it is having an impact on your marriage. I really think therapy is a good thing for you right now. If it is necessary, I would say even couples counseling should be looked into if things with her gets worse. All I can say is don't give up and try to stay motivated. Take her comments lightly and don't let they get to you. I wish you good luck! 

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2 hours ago, Nichole Spencer said:

I am seeing a therapist to help me sort this all out. From that therapy I have concluded that it started due to my mother. She wasn't the most emotionally available person in the world. I had a sister that come into the world when I was 4. My older sister told me the love moved from me to my baby sister. My father was a soldier and it was during the Korean and Vietnam conflict's so he wasn't around much. So I was going through my early formative years with no male role model and surrounded by females.

 

Not to jump on your therapist's foot, but what you describe here, has been shown to be irrelevant to being Trans, although it was a theory at one time.  Emotional neglect does not cause Gender Dysphoria, but it may hold us back on getting it out in the open earlier than we do.  Whatever is going on has been going on for reasons of our own bodies and the brains in them.  In your case the timing of your mother's re-focus on your younger sister may be misleading, but do discuss it with your therapist.  Your relations with your mother do need to be resolved IN ADDITION to the Gender Dysphoria.

 

As far as you and your wife's relations go, I would suggest that you see about getting two books by Jennifer Finney Boylan, the first is Shes Not There, about her life in denial for a variety of reasons, and the other Stuck In The Middle With You  is about the relations she had in coming out with her family.

 

Welcome to the Forums.

 

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Hey Kole has some solid Advice. I 55 on my own. I  fight the fact that I will never be with someone because I will properly never be happy with myself. I was reading your story and all I could think about was " Lucky he has someone." I never realized how sometimes that is more difficult.So now I see; listen to Kole, get a outsider opinion, and work from there..G.L 

 

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  • Admin

Welcome to Trans Pulse, Nichole, and thank you for sharing your story.  It is in some ways like my own.  I came out to my wife at the age of 55.  She wasn't sure at first if she could stick it out, either, and had many doubts.  But we are still together 10 years later, and doing well, so I hope that gives you some cheer for your own future as a couple.

 

Why we are who we are, and what we are, is an interesting thought exercise, but it doesn't change anything in the end.  n my case, I think it may have something to do with my mother's likely use of the drug DES during pregnancy in the 1950's.  But there is no proof, and, like I said, it doesn't much matter.  So my suggestion is to let that issue go, because it won't change anything.

 

There are a lot of good questions among the forum threads, and an equal number of good answers, and some bad answers, too.  Please look around and don't be shy about asking any questions for yourself.  We have a lot of experience among the members here, and one thing we like to do is share it.

 

HUGS

 

Carolyn Marie

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Kole Rickard

I'm sorry it's taking me so long to respond to your comments. I have a very busy life and finding the time to actually sit and ponder things can be somewhat elusive to say the least. I don't have much difficulty living with this. I'm not sure where this fits into my life. I do know it is part of me and will always be. As to what degree I'm still sorting that out. Currently my biggest issue is sorting this out with my wife. As I mentioned in my precious post I did share this with her when we first got together. I didn't have the desire or urge to dress at the time. So my question is ...What Changed?  What happened that brought this back into my life? I ask the question only to understand myself better..not so much to revert back to not dressing.

I do very much enjoy my therapy sessions. It's been very helpful with this and other things going on in my life currently. My wife and I are both currently seeing therapist. We both have "Demons to slay" as we say. We have both attending each other's therapy sessions to do the couples thing. I think she is more comfortable with her therapist then with mine. Which is ok with me. She is very defensive from things that happened in her life. I think her therapist is fair and very good at what she does. My wife currently is working on her own issues before we address our mutual issues. Which again I feel is fair. You have to center yourself before you deal with others. Which is what I'm doing with my therapist as well.  I'm not giving up. She knows I have to sort this out and I try to be sure she understand that this will likely be me forever. Like I said before I'm just not sure as to what extent. I do know I love my wife with all my soul. We are struggling but we are both committed to figuring this out. Taking her comments lightly can certainly be a challenge sometimes. I know this is a long haul thing and nothing with be figure out tomorrow. 

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VickiSVG

I copied and pasted you comment "Emotional neglect does not cause Gender Dysphoria"  in a search and this is one result I though I'd share with you .  http://darahoffmanfox.com/transgender-childhood-events/ one quote from this is  " a trauma from childhood or even a significant event from childhood doesn’t cause someone to be transgender but it can definitely cause gender confusion."  Also this quote  " Going back to the question of why you have asked yourself this question, once again, what you really need to think about is, in the end are you really hoping the answer is not that you’re transgender?"

 

I think the this is a logical path to take to understanding oneself. Maybe some folks don't think that's important. But my goal is to truly understand myself and why I am who I am whatever that person is. 

 

Thank you for the reading suggestions. I will get them and read them in the near future.

 

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Carolyn Marie

It's encouraging to hear that 10 years later your still together. My wife did say a few days back that if she knew this issue was going to came back again she wasn't sure she would have married me. It hurt but at least she's bring honest with me.  When I told her about this years ago when we first got together. I didn't have the desire to express this side of myself. She took that as it was behind  me and no longer and issue. I guess I should have made it clear that it may one day come back. 

I agree that the questions I have don't change anything, I am who I am. This is nothing more then a quest to understand myself better. I may never find the answers I seek and I'm ok with that.  However, that doesn't mean I can't learn more about myself as I talk with others and listen to their experiances. I have little doubt I can learn from them and answer my own questions.

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  • 2 years later...

HI again everyone. I'm still here. It's three years later and I'm still sorting it all out. After all this time I've come to the realization that I'm struggling with allowing myself to be me. To be feminine. To except myself without the self loathing, To stop allowing the shame to make me feel horrible about myself. I say that I'm ok with my fem side. That's a front I put up for myself and those few people I rarely converse with online. I want to be free of this negative energy's (thought processes) that continue to make me feel bad about myself. But in my mind I still feel the shame, embarrassment and the self imposed requirement to "Suck it up and be a Man". I know now that I have to except myself for who I am completely and honestly.  I can't move in any direction until I do that. 

 

Thoughts anybody?

 

Nichole

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Welcome back, Nichole.  The best recommendation I have is that you seek out a gender therapist to talk with.  They are (or should be) trained and experienced in dealing with folks who have the issues with doubt, fear, and "self-loathing" that you've identified.  We can offer support and encouragement, but we can't delve into the "why's" of how you feel here in these forums.  Many of us struggled with it at least at the beginning, as I did.

 

It may be possible that you aren't right with physical or social transition.  Some don't need to, and some don't want to for many reasons.  That's OK, too.  But we can't tell you which way is right for you.  Only you can do that, with the aid of a good G.T.

 

HUGS

 

Carolyn Marie

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I have sometimes found men who engage in toxic masculinity talking about their own self-loathing. As a WOMAN, I have never experienced such a thing in the way they describe. I strongly believe it's not the same as depression, because I have felt that, and felt it for a long time, goodness knows. I have had to be careful sometimes to overlook the things I've seen men say or write, because, actually a lot of the time, it's just men talking to other men, and walking in on their conversations is extremely awkward and unwanted.

 

Additionally, I do NOT have male role models because my role models are women. I respect men, for sure, but I don't and have never felt like I wanted to fill their shoes, which is what role models are there for. I hope you look at the women in your life and draw on their strength, or just any woman in general. Musicians are great sources of inspiration when looking for female role models. There are all kinds of pop stars whose lyrics are so incredibly deeply feminine if you look at them carefully, and often, female singers speak directly to fellow women. Shakira's "She Wolf" and Selena Gomez's "Who Says" are both profound songs that have spoken to me and kept me going.

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