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Guest Joyful Mama

Need some hope for the future

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Guest Joyful Mama

I am fairly new with this forum (discovered LP in October 2011) and we still am learning and have a lot to go through with my daughter to complete the process. My husband and I have managed to get to this point with reading and a counselor. It has been tough and a long emotional road. I have met another mom through LP and we have stayed in touch via PM and it has been a godsend.

Our daughter is in her early 20s and we have surgery scheduled in about 7 months. She is in RLT has done laser, electrolysis, counseling, and currently doing voice therapy.

I am curious to hear how your daughters (M2F) are doing as time goes on. I was wondering if they have gone stealth, or are open about their history and if they 'pass' easily. Also, I am wondering about how life is going for them as far as finding employment and living successfully as young adults and older. Are your daughters experiencing any discrimination and how are they handling it? You see, I get very worried and full of anxiety about my daughter's future. This whole thing has rocked our world and we are doing everything we can to make this work out well for her. It is one thing to go through all the steps involved to transition, but what about afterward? With the economy not so strong, when she begins to look for a job, we worry she won't get job offers because they suspect she is transgendered. (I know they can't discriminate regarding this, but employers can come up with other reasons to not hire someone).

Any stories or advice you are willing to share, I would be so appreciative. If you feel more comfortable with PM, that is fine with me.

Joyful Mama!

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JJ

While I'm not a parent of a trans child or even MTF I did have a lot of fears and concerns because I live in a very conservative area. But so far have found all of my fears ungrounded and people have been very accepting. 100 times more than I ever thought.

Because my family is here I have no option to go stealth when the whole county is less than 2,000 people and I have lived here for 7 years. Plus I will be with my family many of the places I go and that will identify me as well. That scared me. Now it doesn't. There may still be a negative reaction from someone but there have been so many positive I no longer fear the negative.

As far as a job, there is no doubt that according to the statistics we face serious discrimination. My advise would be for her to find something she likes to do in a field where gender variance is accepted and prepare for it. Be more qualified, harder working. That may not be fair to have to do, but life for trans people isn't fair from the get go really. There are many, many transwomen here on site who have good jobs and others who kept jobs through transition. Some didn't. Some struggle to find employment but I think the hardest time to find a job is while in transition. Since your daughter is transitioning early and has surgery scheduled soon I think it will be much easier for her. She can apply and work as the woman she is without that awkward inbetween stage that often confuses people or transitioning on a job where people will have to adjust to changes they may be uncomfortable with.

There will be more challenges for your daughter. Whether she goes stealth or works as a transwoman is a very personal decision that she will need to make. Finding a job may well be easier but it is also stressful worrying about being discovered and that subtle feeling that what you are is somehow wrong if you have to hide it. Some people also just want to put the past behind them and never look back. As I said it's an individual decision.

But she has one huge advantage. She has a family who cares for her and supports her. That will make an enormous difference. I'm sure it already has

You are a great parent and she is a lucky girl!

Johnny

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Guest metajess

I, too, worry about my son's future. He's just now turning 10 but I wonder about how things will be for him as he gets older. I know we're fortunate to have discovered this early to avoid a lot of the turmoil that a lot of trans teens go through but he will never be able to completely hide that he was born female. I worry about him finding love a lot. I know it's premature but I just want so badly for him to be able to fall in love and have a life without strife. He deserves that. We all do.

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Guest meridian

My daughter is in her mid-20s, back in college and out as transgender with professors and students, but still legally in her male identity. She is happy and productive, and I wish that society were as together as she is. I worry, too, about what she might encounter in the future, especially when she starts her career, and I think it must be hard, still, to negotiate transition. But after some difficult years she seems strong and in control of her life. I will write more when I have more time, but I want metajess to know that there are many of us here to listen, share, and offer (and get!) support. Glad you found us!

Love,

Meridian

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Guest meridian

Ooops! I wrote "metajess" but I meant "mama." Moderator, please correct, or just post this, too.

Meridian

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Guest meridian

Moderator, I am trying to respond in a hurry. I suppose my message is for both metajess and mama--and all the new parents on the list. Sorry. I need to get ready for work!

Meridian

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Guest meridian

Dear Friends,

Please forgive my excessive posting on Tuesday; I should not post when I don't really have the time to read or write carefully. But I was very moved by mama's and Jess's questions, as I share so many of their concerns, and I wanted to respond. I also found Johnny's comments to be very helpful. My daughter has been working part-time in education, and was for the most part doing well. But then she lost two part-time jobs, both for reasons that seemed to me insufficient, and I think we both began to suspect that there was some discrimination going on. She had been considering a career in education, but is now concerned that she might face too much opposition for that path to be worthwhile. After reading Johnny's words about getting work in a setting where gender variance is accepted, I made a similar suggestion to her, at least as she continues to look for part-time work. She seemed to be listening. I hope she'll follow up. Like the other parents on this forum, I want my daughter's life to go smoothly, and I feel sad knowing that often it will not.

That said, I want to reassure the "newer" parents on the list that things can get better. My daughter is in college and doing well, and she looks beautiful. She has not had SRS (and is not sure she wants to) but she is taking hormones. We spent a lovely Thanksgiving with two families of close friends, whose children she had grown up with. Everyone was there, and it was happy, relaxed, and very much like old times. I worry about the career road ahead (as does my daughter), but I remember to be grateful for all that is good.

Love,

Meridian

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Guest RainbowGoth98

I, too, worry about my son's future. He's just now turning 10 but I wonder about how things will be for him as he gets older. I know we're fortunate to have discovered this early to avoid a lot of the turmoil that a lot of trans teens go through but he will never be able to completely hide that he was born female. I worry about him finding love a lot. I know it's premature but I just want so badly for him to be able to fall in love and have a life without strife. He deserves that. We all do.

I so wish you were MY mom!!!

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Guest Joyful Mama

I appreciate your responses to my concern. Johnny, your advice is helpful and I hope a gender variant job is something she can aim for.

Meridian, I think my daughter has also lost a job in the past that probably was due to her being transgendered. So unfair. My daughter, too, isn't finished with college yet either.

I think getting an interview and a job offer is the huge, and then maintaining the job. Women have always had to work extra hard to prove themselves when their job has a lot of male counterparts. The same will definitely be true for transgendered folks.

The more I think about it, I don't think someone can actually go completely stealth, what with all the computer technology these days, as it is too easy for connections to be made from anyone's past. Especially it can be difficult with the younger generation, as they can reveal too much via facebook, or if not them, their old friends, which can follow a person.

Do you think over the next few years, things will become easier and more accepting for transgendered folks? I want to believe it!

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Guest twinstar4

Mama,

I share your worries. And Meridian, you are right, Johnnie's response is very helpful and realistic.

Mama, you should try not to worry about everything. True, there is much that is unknown about how our TG children's lives will unfold. We can't control or fix everything. You are doing the best that you can do by loving and supporting your daughter.

I believe my daughter has been turned down for jobs and lost a job because of her gender variance. You are right, the employers can say it is for another reason and therefore it is not discriminatory. I feel somewhat helpless as I watch these scenarios happen in her life. But she needs to learn to handle it and herself properly and gracefully. The best I can do is try to help her know her self worth, make sure she knows she is loved and accepted within the family. Then hopefully she will build on that and be able to fall back on knowing she is worthy and valuable when things get tough for her.

Yes, I believe one can truely go stealth. Although, the points you bring up about the information that is out on the net compound the problem. I laso believe there are more good people who are accepting and open minded than those who aren't. So far, during the three years that my daughter has been "out" I have found that to be true.

.

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Guest Joyful Mama

Thank you, Twinstar, for your advice. I am generally not the worrying type of mother, but I would say life has got me on that one right now. I liked what you said about reminding her of her self-worth and and to teach her to learn to handle situations and herself properly and gracefully. I will definitely work on that with her, as she does get discouraged and rather angry when she feels overwhelmed with unfairness. We seem to have hills and valleys with transitioning and hopefully it will continue to settle down. Our consultation with the surgeon is coming up quick and I am looking forward to helping her with this huge step. Thank you to everyone for your support and kindness!

Joyful Mama

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Guest Ms French

In my reading over the past few days I have found that it is LEGAL in this state to discriminate and refuse to hire trans people in both non-gov and government positions involving the 'care or instruction of minors' - what the??? So what exactly is this law supposed to protect our children from? Trans are child predators now? Trans will 'turn the children? I'm so angry about this and I can already see myself being spurred into action to fight discrimination!

Also legal is that trans people can be refused fertility treatment!

Does anyone else have legal discrimination in their state/country?

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Guest Mother2Many

I'm still trying to figure out my daughter (M2F). She's only 4 and she goes back and forth on being adamant and being neutral. She has free range of clothing options and chooses boy clothes, but has recently asked for a dress for herself and to grow her hair long like one of her sisters. I'm glad she is young still and we can all learn and adjust together but I worry constantly about the future too. Right now only my MIL "knows" about Evan wanting to be Evelyn, only because Evelyn got frustrated at my MIL for calling her 'Evan' over the phone. She argued . . . my 4yo ARGUED with my MIL on the phone about her name *giggle*. Thankfully she is accepting and my husband explained things to his mom about what's going on.

At this stage and at such a young age I worry about pushing it too soon. What if we go ahead and just go full throttle with 'Evelyn' only for her to get 'bored' with it or something and change her mind and decide she's really a boy? I have really conservative Mormon family that won't take kindly to this kind of news. They already dislike me for leaving their cult! What if they try and turn this around on us and say we are pushing her into being transgender? I certainly don't want to come off as doing that either.

Just trying to find the balance is insane to me. I love my children no matter who they are or who they become or choose to be, but I know the world doesn't see it the same way as me so I constantly worry!

I have years and years to go to hopefully figure it all out, but I think it is fast approaching the time in which we will have to all "come out" about Evelyn, since Evelyn is already changing her appearance with growing hair out and insisting on her female name. I am certainly not looking forward to the day she talks to my mom on the phone and argues with her about her name being Evelyn . . . if I let that happen.

I wish I had better advice. :(

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Guest Joyful Mama

Mother2Many,

Whether you realize it or not, you are a very lucky mom to have discovered this about your child early on. Your child won't have to suppress who they really are while growing up, which will enable her/him (I am assuming her?) to be mentally healthy and happy. You probably have already been told that, but I just wanted to emphasis it since we witnessed the misery it caused in our family when my daughter had to live that way.

My only advice would be to talk to a gender therapist for advice. The gt should be able to render you a direction to go in and how to handle the many challenges ahead.

As for your Mormon family, they will have to deal with their feelings. If it is communicated to them in the right way and with good factual information, there is a strong possibility they will understand. In my experience, my strongest statements that I felt 'got through' to some of our toughest audiences were, 'They are born this way and no one would chose this', 'We have discovered our child is a special needs child who was born transsexual'. I found I could talk about the subject in depth to someone whose 'faith' caused them discomfort. It seems the 'born-agains' can tout their beliefs loudly, but I found strength in myself to rebound by touting my information to prove this is not a choice. Not that I was looking for an argument, but rather leveling the playing field. I suppose it will depend, too, on how close your family is to your child - is there a strong bond? You just might be surprised and experience a positive outcome. I worried for a year before we told anyone because we didn't think anyone would understand, which was the complete opposite. Don't let fear control you because you lose grounding then.

As parents, we all worry about something with our children. It is normal to worry, but try to find a balance and keep yourself busy so you find some distraction. Tell yourself you carve out a certain time of day where you will spend 1 hour (or however long you think) a day on problem-solving and decision making with this situation. It is always somewhere in our minds 24x7, but try to balance it so you don't drive yourself crazy. You will make the right choices and I will be thinking of you! My best wishes to you!

Joyful Mama

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Sally

I am not a parent but I am an MTF who has transitioned on the job and I would like to tell you that as we are getting more and more accepting as a society so worrying about everything is more than you can do anyway so let's put the career part to rest.

I work in retail sales with my salary based on commissions, I started this job in July on 2010 working in male mode under my birth name, I developed a following with people recommending me to their friends.

In September of 2011 I had my name changed legally and began working as Sally, in the same store, same department, same coworkers and much of the same clientele, people still come to me and refer their friends to me - even the ones who knew me before.

I believe that things are going to continue to get better as time goes by, I am by no means stealth but if I moved to another area I could try that - too many people here know me and do not mind so it is fine with me.

It is possible to transition, have a decent job and live a good life, I had a long road that spanned six decades to get here but starting so much earlier will give them the opportunity to enjoy being themselves for so much longer.

Love ya,

Sally

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Guest Svenna

I am not a parent but I am an MTF who has transitioned on the job and I would like to tell you that as we are getting more and more accepting as a society so worrying about everything is more than you can do anyway so let's put the career part to rest.

I work in retail sales with my salary based on commissions, I started this job in July on 2010 working in male mode under my birth name, I developed a following with people recommending me to their friends.

In September of 2011 I had my name changed legally and began working as Sally, in the same store, same department, same coworkers and much of the same clientele, people still come to me and refer their friends to me - even the ones who knew me before.

I believe that things are going to continue to get better as time goes by, I am by no means stealth but if I moved to another area I could try that - too many people here know me and do not mind so it is fine with me.

It is possible to transition, have a decent job and live a good life, I had a long road that spanned six decades to get here but starting so much earlier will give them the opportunity to enjoy being themselves for so much longer.

Love ya,

Sally

Sally,

Thank you for this reminder. I am beginning to realize that my coming out is going far better than I feared it might. I have begun to reconsider a lot of my presumptions about how people I've known for years would react if I told them...

One by one, I believe I can connect with them all, perhaps I'll lose a few, but I'll surely like the ones that stay in my life even better, right?

I also agree that things are changing a lot. These great Moms we see here are an indicator of the progress made in the last 20-30 years. Their children and children's children should have a far easier go of it than we had...

I feel blessed to see such things come to pass. Heck, I just feel blessed, period...

Being trans isn't the problem, being trans amongst bigots is...lol...

Suddenly, being a gender bigot doesn't seem so cool anymore, and that is a good thang!

Love to all, Svenna

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Guest Mother2Many

Thank you JoyfulMama

I know I over-worry. I honestly don't believe my Mormon family will be unaccepting since they never grew up "Utah" Mormons, and YES there is a HUGE difference between Utah Morons and many of those that grew up outside of what is known as "The Morridor" (aka Cali, Utah, Idaho, Colorado, & Arizona Mormon stretch - since they are concentrated there the most). We were all born and raised in Michigan and my parents tend to have more liberal views and ideals. I've never heard them say negative things about LGBT. My dad's wife has LGBT's on her side and I know he's worked with and hired many LGBT's over the years in the catering business, so I really don't fear it . . . too much. I think I worry about them thinking I am "pushing" this some how. Now I do have one sister who literally had a switch flip in her brain as a teen . . . I saw it with my own eyes . . . and she went full fledged brainwashed into the cult. She acts more like a Utah Mormon and has had a few negative things to say about the LGBT's so I think I worry most about her reaction, but not to the point of caring so much I'd hide any of this. She's already disliked me for leaving her cult, and she has poor social skills when it comes to manners in certain things.

In all honesty I believe we surround ourselves and attract people we agree with, whether we know it or not! I personally have NOT seen blatant bigotry or even racism (considering we are a bi-racial family) like some have and I wonder if it is because of who I choose to surround myself with and or where I live too. I left one religion/cult and even then I somehow instinctually was drawn to the more liberal thinking people! Some have left the religion with me and others stay but still fight for gay rights, and are lib-dems etc etc. We are now in a church community that is a Welcoming Church and we are surrounded by liberal democrats and LGBT's and their allies! LOL Not to forget the large number of bi-racial families there too! *hahaha* It wasn't completely "on purpose" either but knowing who my friends are and my UU church community are all VERY supportive of Evelyn and even in helping to guide us through this as well as defend us if we need it, is extremely comforting.

Yes I am a mother, and I worry, but I also don't overly obsess about it all. *wink* We'll get to a GT as soon as we can locate and afford one, though.

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Guest Mother2Many

Sally,

Thank you for this reminder. I am beginning to realize that my coming out is going far better than I feared it might. I have begun to reconsider a lot of my presumptions about how people I've known for years would react if I told them...

One by one, I believe I can connect with them all, perhaps I'll lose a few, but I'll surely like the ones that stay in my life even better, right?

I also agree that things are changing a lot. These great Moms we see here are an indicator of the progress made in the last 20-30 years. Their children and children's children should have a far easier go of it than we had...

I feel blessed to see such things come to pass. Heck, I just feel blessed, period...

Being trans isn't the problem, being trans amongst bigots is...lol...

Suddenly, being a gender bigot doesn't seem so cool anymore, and that is a good thang!

Love to all, Svenna

No the problem is just bigots being alive. {{{sigh}}}

I do agree, though, that my generation and the next 2-3 generations coming up will be the one that will truly make strides in the LGBT rights arena. They'll be the ones to FINALLY get the marriage equality settled as the 'old' age out of the "system" the 'new' will take over legislation and voting. I believe . . . I KNOW I will see marriage equality if not LGBT equality before I die (of old age *wink*). I don't want to live in a country that won't change. Seriously if I don't see MAJOR changes in the next 25 years I WILL be applying for a Canadian visa. There is so much I hate about America right now, but I too see it getting better as more and more minds are changed and bigotry is no longer "cool".

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