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Guest Catriona

A Top Ten List

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Guest Catriona

Hi everyone,

As an S/O I constantly feel as though I'm looking for a guide that will get my partner and I through this and in tact. I know that all of us here struggle with how much we love our partners and we want to make the best of a very difficult and confusing situation. While I'm just getting my feet wet, my partner describes himself as gender dysphoric, but is taking the steps toward sorting it all out and toward a transition if it fits (pardon me for pronouns in my introduction I refer to my partner as her, so as not to offend others), I know that I've learned a few things but was hoping that some of you could share too.

I pose a question: what are the top ten things that you think are important for couples in a transition? They could be as simple or detailed as you like. I hope that this thread will continue and those of us coming here for advice may find it useful as a quick reference. I've put the top ten things that get me through as a newbie below.

Thanks for reading!

1. Love, no matter what gender I love this person with all of my heart

2. Communication, even when what you have to say may not be what they want to hear

3. Openess, you won't know until you try, or see, don't snap to judgements too quickly your partner is probably more nervous than you are

4. Help out, while we are all at different stages of being involved small gestures, like shopping online together can make a huge difference

5. Respect and compromise

6. Conversations about things not gender related, you and your partner need a break from it all sometimes

7. Have fun, in a new way, in an old way, in your house, or outside, just make sure you have some fun as a couple.

8. Research and ask your partner questions, I am always comforted by knowledge and making assumptions causes more trouble than its worth

9. Get help, talk to others

10. You matter too, you are going through the journey too so find time for yourself and your thoughts and emotions

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Guest Emily Ray

I think this is a wondeful list! Thank you for posting it! I wish you so much happiness in your future as you move forward. Thank you for continuing to love her.



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Guest ~Brenda~

Dear Catriona,

Your list is thoughtful and demonstrates selflessness. The fundamental tenor of your post shows tenderness, support and love for the person your partner is, not their gender.

your partner is very lucky to have you in their life.

I really cannot add to your list because my partner ditched me in a heartbeat.


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Guest confusedpartner

as the others have said, this is a great post. i too am a newbie, only finding out about my partner a couple of months ago, and find it a real struggle most of the time. i had a think about what i would put as my top ten, but i dont think there is anything that you haven't put down in yours. i do believe the first few that you put down are the most important, and at times probably some of the hardest parts to deal with - communication and openness are very important but i have to admit they can be very hard to do at times. if i think of any others, ill be sure to post them here for you and others to see and hopefully they may help someone else having a hard time.

thanks for the great idea, its given me something positive to think about, not all the negatives - which i seem to focus on alot :(

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Guest Catriona

Thanks to everyone who has replied so far and Brenda I'm so sorry to hear about your situation. It is a hard choice to make to stay with a partner, and love can only be so much. Brenda I hope you find in your future the right person who loves you for you. @ConfusedPartner, this is exactly why I posted. It is so diffucult to deal with and can be so easy to be consumed by the negative, I would be lying if I hadn't said there are many times when I have to consider if I want to do the easy thing and just leave, but where would my partner be? What would my leaving prove, that rejection is the only outcome, and the community seems so filled with people who were rejected that I can't imagine adding that to my partner's plate. I would like, if thing must end someday and I hope they never will, for it to be a mutal descion and good parting of romantic ways. I can't imagine life without my partner, if as nothing but one of my very best friends.

I encourage everyone to add something, even if it's only 1 thought.

Thanks again for reading, and thank you all for your suppourt, it means the world to me.

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Guest Confused.wife.22

I am very new to this. As you can tell by my name I am the s/o of a man who has just revealed he's MTF and may want to transition. Your list is fantastic and I love knowing that I am not the only spouse feeling these emotions. I find that ive spent so many hours the last week considering his feelings and my kids feelings its hard to take time to process my own. I love your list and cannot find anything (yet) to add to it. I have no clue what our future holds, if we'll stay together or not. If he transitions to a she then I hope at the very least we will remain best friends, because for 10 years thats exactly what he's been.

Hope things are still well with you and your spouse.

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Guest Lacey Lynne

Dear Catriona,

Your list is thoughtful and demonstrates selflessness. The fundamental tenor of your post shows tenderness, support and love for the person your partner is, not their gender.

your partner is very lucky to have you in their life.

I really cannot add to your list because my partner ditched me in a heartbeat.


Thanksgiving Day of 2011 ... Happy Holidays!

Okay, so I'm majorly late to this particular party. Sorry! I only discovered this thread today.

You CAN make it as a couple!!! I KNOW this is TRUE! I know people who are DOING so!!!

Like Brenda, my wife of 20 years bagged me in a Tampa Bay Heartbeat. Oh, well. Like, fine.

My best friends have been married for 34+ years, the "husband" is transitioning and is fulltime. They are still together, will be for the duration and are the most beautiful people I know. Fortunately, I know many other beautiful people. Many of them are on this forum.

Thanksgiving Wish To You:

Be THANKFUL for what you've GOT, because, honey, you've got a LOT!!!

Take it from those of us who have lost and lost hugely in the significant other department, a good significant other is darned near the whole ballgame in life. Cherish your sweety, honey. She loves you.

Peace & Joy :friends: Lacey Lynne :friends: Happy Thanksgiving :friends:

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Guest Janice Lynn

Catriona, thank you so much for the Top 10 list. I cannot add to it as a MTF who

has, after 43 years of marriage, opted not to fully transition. Your grace, kindness,

and love literally drench your words with compassion. Your SO is a wonderfully

lucky woman to have you in her corner.

For those who, like yourself, never intended to buy into the situation where you

now find yourselves, I can only say that the every day little things matter so much

yet are so overlooked. Things are different now. I absolutely adore every

expression of love or affection my wife brings my way .... whether it be the kiss on

the cheek, the pat on the bum, or calling me "Kitten" .... everything the loves in

our lives do to let us know we are loved for who we are are in many ways the

things that keep us going.

You are also right in pointing out that this is not the whole of our lives. We still

like and love the things we always have, despite our new revelations of interest

in clothes and fashion. I still love college football and basketball. Blame the

conditioning I was subjected to, but I can't walk away from things that helped me

set aside the pain and frustration while I struggled on as my "male" self. We can

talk or, as I've noticed, you can listen as I appear to be what you probably call

my "normal self." Meanwhile I can tease you about your baggage.

All these things said, it can work. It takes work. But it can be done. My wife and

I are evidence of it. I'll never fully transition but we are enjoying ... honestly ....

a life that is far more honest than we have ever experienced before. And I do

not believe my wife would ever want to go back to the sad, lonely, anguished,

and bitter person I was before.

Every day is now a new day.

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Guest HerMrs

This top ten is excellent! I recently discovered my husband crossdresses. Even though I am fully supportive, I am still hurting inside. And not necessarily because I think it's wrong, but because he has felt like he needed to hide it from me all this time. This list brings some clarity and realizations to the front. Thank you.

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Guest Diamondgirl

Love your list.

I am a GG wife and I think I had it easier than alot of wifes. Because I knew from the very first day.

My list

we grew together....still learning together on this journey.

1. Goals - both parties have similar short term and long term goals. This is important because once everything is on the table, a new level of comfort and stability come into the relationship.

2 Trust - when a high level of trust is formed, it knocks out negatives

3. Drive - it is imperative that both parties in a relationship have the drive to make the relationship work. One careless partner can destroy the relationship.

4. Common Interests - sure, opposites attract, but it's always a plus to have something in common. Doing things together does more for your relationship than you think. It's like glue.

5 She/he loves me for me.....and I can be stubborn lol But I know and feel loved for just who I am and I love him/ her for being themselves

6. Communication - this is also key to a happy, healthy relationship. Learning to talk with each other (not TO each other) is an art really.

7. We going through this journey together makes for a very strong close relationship

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I really liked reading the top 10 & other reasons. Being married for 24 years, I always knew about the underwear, 10 years ago I found out it went further, 2 years ago we finally had a name, a definition, & it finally made sense. We found a therapist we both were comfortable with and have just kept checking to make sure we are on the same page. We constantly check in with each other & have patience when the fear & embarrassment are strong. It will pass once you feel it, express it, and start to deal with the why's. as long as both are willing to get past that immediate emotion and work towards each other. It's not all rainbows & kittens  but it's not all dark & scary either. 

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