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Dysphoria worsening during depression?


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Still figuring myself out, and I'd hoped to make just one big post with all my questions but I think this question by itself is a start I'm more comfortable with.

Also, I checked the forum rules and I don't believe I saw anything that ruled out discussing mental health things like this, but if I'm incorrect or in the wrong area let me know :)


I'm very aware that many people with dysphoria find that it gives them depression, whether momentary or not, for a variety of reasons. But something that I have is that when I have a bout of depression, no matter how major or minor, I suddenly have the urge to become a boy (man? Age is weird) even more than usual.

Mostly, I'm very capable of going days, maybe even months, without doubting my gender (excluding the little odd feelings that come with pronouns) but as soon as I'm depressed, it just goes out the window and suddenly I'm very much reminded of the discomfort I have.


Right now, I'm doing rather well but before that had recently not been feeling too great, but I think this is the most I've ever wanted to change my gender (I've felt this way for 4~ years).

I don't particularly want it to be the case that my dysphoria is triggered by depression, as I think I would be quite happy with transitioning in my own ways and I don't want it to just be something that comes and goes.


Also, I understand that this isn't a place for therapy and I am seeking out counselling of a variety of sorts. I just want some input from others :)


So, has anyone else ever experienced this kind of thing? Dysphoria caused or worsened by depression?

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  • Forum Moderator
Jackie C.

Hrm, not exactly? My depression was a symptom of my dysphoria, not the other way around. I've had very few depressive episodes since transitioning and I hope to have fewer still going forward. Basically, if life wants to kick me in the balls, now it has to search a landfill in Philadelphia. Take THAT life!


Also, you're fine on posting. If we weren't allowed to talk about our mental health issues, we'd lose about half our content. 🦊


I hope I'm exaggerating.



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@king_boo I think this an interesting "which came first: the chicken or the egg?" problem. I strongly believe that dysphoria caused my depression, my own experience certainly proved that to myself. But then, when I reflected on what was making me depressed, I would inevitably return to the dysphoric thoughts that were fueling it - usually accompanied by some additional thing to be dysphoric and then depressed about. For me, the cycle was only broken by acknowledging the gender dysphoria was real, accepting myself as transgender, and starting transition. I guess my question to you might be, if transition is something you are feeling hopeful about, maybe it doesn't matter whether dysphoria causes depression or vice versa? It sounds like you see a path forward and away from the feelings and thoughts that you're wrestling with, and by working on one you are actually working on both at the same time. Just my two cents.




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@king_boo I think I might know where you're coming from. I am ftm but I don't have terrible dysphoria as such most of the time, that I can consciously identify. Then I realize that if I were amab, I would handle depression and anxiety and just tons of other things so much more calmly and better. If I understand your post, I think that might be what's happening with you--the depression comes on, and you know that being male would help you ride it out and make it easier.

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  • Admin

I have a cyclic Clinical Depression problem that has been around more years than most of the members here have been alive.  I am in a remission phase now but do not seem much different to others unless I put up a danger flag to keep them away for a bit.  During a depressed period, there are things that become more intense, but they were there, just not  in my attention field and seemed to be hidden.  Among others, the GD was one of those things that simply claimed my focus while other things faded out for a bit.  After I gave my GD center focus in the Non Depress time and took the steps to resolve it and let it work out, it no longer comes into my depression low cycle like it did at all.  GD is Consistent, Persistent, and Insistent so it was best to get it out of the way in real time up.  I had a down time a few months ago, and with my life as my Transitioned self cared for the last 10 years, it was not part of things, but believe me there were others to take its place.  Your story is that the GD keeps coming up and it is the same each time (consistent) you do not have times when the idea of being another gender changes in its coming on (Persistent) and now it has come to a place where it Insists that you talk about it.  Good things to talk about with a therapist who deals in GD.  You may not fully Transition, but knowing and being able to define the feeling and be at ease with it will shut it up so you can deal with other parts of your depression times.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am similar to you. I've had depression since childhood and dysphoria made my symptoms worse.

I think it is not at all unusual. I'd classify my dysphoria level as medium  - it took me ages for me to come out as trans since I was able to tolerate my body until the year 2018, when my dysphoria was off the roof and I was very emotionally unstable.


I had been doubting my gender identity since I was 12 - I came out at 20. It was a hard year for me and I even started dissociating because I was unsure of what I was. I wanted to be a man, but still had doubts about it.

I knew that I was not opposed to androgyny. I wanted to have different genitals, and a flat chest, etc.

But I was unsure about having a different voice and things like that. It was a fear of the unknown.


There were days in which I could look down and see my body and almost be content with it, but there was something that still bothered me. People would tell me that I sounded like a non-binary person, but as it turns out - I am just a man, in my own terms. I will wear what I want and do what I want. I don't want to be a macho man at all.

I will wear a suit in some days and I might use makeup when I feel like it. And that's ok.

Even after I came out, I still went back to being a "girl" because I was repressing myself. It just ended in trouble.


You do not need to adhere to any "rules". Transition the way you think is best. It is your life, your mind and your body. Experiment with pronouns and a name. It will be odd at first - I feared using male pronouns for the longest time because I thought someone would think I was an impostor. It was a silly thought.


Try dressing up more masculine and see if that clicks with you. Get a short haircut or even buzz your hair off, etc.

Present as a male online. See how you feel about it. I hope you find the path that works for you.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 1/9/2021 at 8:02 AM, VickySGV said:

After I gave my GD center focus in the Non Depress time and took the steps to resolve it and let it work out, it no longer comes into my depression low cycle like it did at all.


This. I'm hoping it'll work for me, and it sure sounds like sage advice. I feel like I've pushed the dysphoria to the back of my mind during "healthy" (ie, non-depressed) periods, only for it to re-emerge when I'm depressed and least able to handle it. No more! Dysphoria goes to the top of the list of problems in my life to sort out.


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