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I have that itch again ...


QuestioningAmber

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QuestioningAmber

I’ve been thinking about coming out again here over the past couple of days.

 

I think I have this grand vision in my brain of how I would do it, and part of me thinks while we are in quarantine is just as good of time as any. If I did it, it would start with my parents. I would invite them to a Zoom session, send them an email, and have them read the note attached and then we would talk about it. I would reassure them that I am not changing who I am, just how I present myself on the outside. I am still their child, and I still care about them, I just have to do this for me because I don’t want to live unauthentically anymore.

 

The next step would be two of my aunts that I am closest with, and come out to them, using a similar method of using Zoom (they also live a few states away), and have a note/message ready for them. Alternatively, we have a vacation coming up with these aunts, and I could wait until then, but I don’t want to put a damper on the vacation if things go poorly.

 

I don’t know why this is coming up, it seems like it hits in waves. The rest I would wait on social media until I purge the people that I don’t want on there anyways (some negative people touting hateful things already), or I would go with the two-profile method for a while. I don’t have much of an active Facebook life as it is, and slowly move people over via private messages or something of that sort. I don’t know what I will do about my coworkers or former coworkers. Then there is LinkedIn which I don’t know what to do about that, probably leave that along until I decide if I am going to fully transition.

 

This is what I get when my side project is done and I have nothing but time to think about things like that, and of course my therapist is on vacation this coming up week so I don’t see her so I thought I would at least share this somewhere I could get feedback on the ideas.

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  • Forum Moderator

Sounds like a good plan. What's holding you back?

 

The first couple people are hard. Every person you tell makes the next one just a little easier.

 

Hugs!

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QuestioningAmber

I think what keeps me from doing it is knowing there isn't any going back once I do it. Once I come out, there is no more secret. I have to be completely be vulnerable, which makes me feel really uncomfortable. I think it is also that fear of rejection. I know it isn't my place to control other people's reactions or opinions, just losing the support of a family member scares me, or even worse, me being outed not on my terms, but someone else's terms because of a blow out with them.

 

I keep thinking of the parable of Pandora's box, once you open it, you can't put it back away.

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KathyLauren

I totally get the fear.  I was terrified to come out to my wife, and then terrified to come out to the rest of the world.  What got me through the first terror was tons of support from online friends, and trust in my wife. 

 

Getting past the second terror took practice.  I was part-time for several months, dressing at home, for the support group meetings, and on one occasion for a trip to the big city.  In the process of going back and forth between male and female presentations, I realized what it was that was driving my dysphoria: the need to hide.  Once I realized that I had been hiding who I was for 60 years and that I hated hiding, my way forward became clear.  I had to stop hiding myself.

 

So, if your dysphoria is anything like mine, you may find that going part-time for a while, on your own terms, may help you to get over the fear of coming out.

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That is a similar approach I took to most of my coming outs, minus the zoom. 
 

My wife was the first and she confronted me based on signs she had picked up on, so I don’t really count that, as it wasn’t planned. I’m in the process of coming out to all of the folks that I want to hear it directly from me. I chose to go with email, texts or dms. The reason for this, was to allow the people I messaged time to process, so they didn’t feel pressured to reply on the spot or have a bad initial knee jerk reaction. The only drawback to this is the wait after you hit send to when you get a reply. I’ve done enough these now that I can just go on about my day, for the first few I was a big ball of stress and anxiety until I heard back. 
 

So far I am 11 for 11 on acceptance. No idea how I got so lucky to have so many awesome people in my life. 
 

While I am doing these personal coming outs, I am purging my socials in prep of coming out en masse. I am still undecided if I will make a post or just quietly update my name and stats.
 

I’m at the point right now where I really just want to get this done with, but I am holding back and doing the personal coming outs out of respect for those individuals I am really close to. I just think that any big news should come from me and not the grapevine, so no mixed messages make it there first. 

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QuestioningAmber

@SaraW I gave some thought to just doing email, the Zoom part I think is just so that way if they have immediate questions for me I can answer them versus them having to come up with the answers on their own (either through research or their own head). I feel like this is something big, and will stretch some people to their limits of acceptance, even though in reality, it probably isn't as big of a deal as I am making it in my head. Coming out to my wife wasn't that bad, I actually took a couple of online tests, one of them from a psychiatric website though I don't remember that kind of pointed towards okay, this is real. So I just sent her a picture and we talked about it in greater length and that wasn't bad. I don't think I want to use the same method for the others close to me, I just haven't word smithed the right language yet.

 

@KathyLauren I actually have been going part time at home for over a year now at home. I will present as Amber at home, and not really go out. I made a trip to the zoo in more of an androgynous mode, and got a negative reaction from one woman, so overall successful. I just wonder if it is time to come out to my parents so that way I can also be free to present how I want around them. It also lets me be just simply more authentic and honest with people. I think a lot of my fear is I was trained to always live for others, serve others in my life, and don't go against the grain of society. I am now doing some "selfish" by living for me, and that is going against all the years of programming that I have.

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21 hours ago, QuestioningAmber said:

I think I have this grand vision in my brain of how I would do it

I have very similar feelings and concerns, Amber.  Its probably still a bit of a ways off that I will needto come out, but the thought does terrify me, and I go through very similar scenarios in my head.  Its like on a constant loop ?

 

I do appreciate @KathyLauren's and @SaraAW's experiences on how they managed similar worries and their process.  Those were very helpful, girls❣️

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QuestioningAmber

So I was talking to a friend about this in detail yesterday, and she suggested I wait to come out after we have our annual family vacation where my two close aunts, uncle, grandmother, and brother go down to the Outer Banks. Her thought being that way we don't messy up vacation and all, which makes sense. I have no intention on coming out to my grandmother, mostly because she also has dementia, and that would only make things worse for her because of major change. 

 

I think I have an idea of a generic email/letter that I would use. Last time I had this itch I went through the effort of writing everyone a custom letter, and I re-read them, and didn't like them anymore so I thought I would start afresh. I think one thing different this time planning it is focusing on how gender is a spectrum, and it is simple, I don't align with my biology and just end up more on the female end of the spectrum.

 

@KayC I think the scenario keeps playing in my head too. I think that is why in some ways I don't want to wait and just get it done. That is why I spent this morning so far checking the site and then writing what is my generic coming out template I am calling it.

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  • 3 weeks later...
Bobbie Scott

Thank you to all you girls, for sharing your thoughts and experiences. I'm just now coming to terms with having to come out. 

 

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