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Guest Kendra K

Discovering "later" in life

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Guest Kendra K

For those of you who didn't know you were transgendered when you were a child or when you were a teen, what - if anything- do you recall from your childhood that sticks out as a sign? Does being raised in a religous conservative household seem to be a big reason why transgender people find out later in life?

I'm in my middle 30s and only in the last year or so I've started to say I'm transgender. Up until this point I've just thought I had some usual tastes, had more female qualities than other men, and other things like that.

Seems that since at least my 20s I've been interested in women's clothing. I'd be more interested looking through the women's sections in catalogs and walking by the women's sections in stores. I figured maybe it was just a sexual thing. There's certainly that - I've had a crush on wedding lingerie forever- but just thinking about clothing isn't always sexual - being able to wear a wedding gown, with accompaning jewelry and hair sounds dreamy.

My memories of teen years and before aren't very good. There's very little that I can recall that seems to point to my being transgender.

So I'm just starting to come with grips that I am transgender, but even now I have a hard time saying I am transgender.

Over on Reddit someone posted a question that if you could just flip a switch and become the opposite gender and there was no going back, would you? I can almost complete say yes, so that would seem to say I'm transgender right?

This all being said, right now I'm not ready to even try a counselor. I'd love to come out to someone, but that's a litle terrifying. I guess I'm just venting a little..... at least on here it's nice to be able to say these things.

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Sally

Kendra,

I knew that I was different from a very early age but I had no idea that I was transgendered until later on and even then I did not know that there was anything that I could do about it.

Memories from childhood do not always give clear indications - playing with dolls or trucks only shows an interest often associated with a close sibling rather than any gender identity.

So often we think that we did not have the 'right' feelings early enough to be transgendered so we must be wrong and it is something else - there are no right or wrong feelings as there is no time window - it is different for everyone.

Do not be in such a hurry to dismiss therapy or to come out to anyone until you are more confident in yourself.

It is not easy but you need to be comfortable with yourself before you start telling others.

Love ya,

Sally

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Guest Amanda Whyte

Kendra, I never thought of myself as female until just a few weeks ago and I am 43. Before I just always wished I was. I never thought that it was something I could realistically do. Before finding Lauras and going to counseling I never seperated the sexual from the mental. There is several places I have told my story but I remember around kindergarten age wanting my nails painted, dabbled in crossdressing from teen years on up, and had one really suprising reaction to a bus ride. My junior or senior year I was on a class trip and the bus was bouncing pretty good. I have always been overweight and my breasts started bouncing. All of a sudden it dawned on me I was having an experience the girls were having and I had to pull my ball cap down like I was sleeping because I just sat there crying. Nothing at all unusual about your feelings. I do suggest you find a good gender counselor, but if you arent ready then just do it when you are. Your gender counselor could be the first person you open up to and it is such a relief to do so.

Hugz,

Mandy

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Guest eliza.d

mandy, thanks for sharing that bis ride experience with us. we all have so many instances of these things in oir early life, well at least i know i did.

i knew i was supposed to have been born a girl. i am a girl inside, i just got the wrong body. it wasnt until recently found that there was something i could do about it. now i am getting my life back and being happy. it seems more and more of those indicators, often repressed, are coming to the surface.

i did come from a deep south conservative religious background, although i was always at odds with religion since i couldnt figure out why i was born like this. thankfully, i turned my heart back to god and he opened up the path that is helping me to live as never before.

its a hard road, but liberating, exciting, and wonderful as well.

we all have pain from childhood trauma, etc...but it doesnt mean we have to suffer.

there is hope. we CAN live as we want and as we need.

Eliza

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Guest Lacey Lynne

Kendra:

Well, I'm 56. Know what? The way you felt? Me too.

Believe me when I say it was a whole different ballgame to feel this way in the 1950s/1960s/1970s than when you grew up. However, what REALLY matters is what you felt all those years. Hey, again, me too. Sally and Eliza are right. They gave you great advice. Like Sally said, especially, maybe it's a good idea for you to find a gender therapist experienced in counseling and diagnosing transsexuals and begin therapy.

Oh, by the way, are you willing to spend $12.86 to buy THE VERY BEST book there is on the subject of transsexuality? If so, well, it'll be the best money you've spent in a very long time, believe me. Take a look at this, and, please, read some of the 5-star and 4-star reviews:

http://www.amazon.com/True-Selves-Understanding-Transsexualism---Professionals/dp/0787967025/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1326519842&sr=1-1

As you read this book, especially the first half of it, you'll encounter other transsexauls' stories and feel like you're reading about you own life in AMAZING detail and you'll realize you are NOT alone in feeling this way. Check it out and see, if you want to.

Peace :friends: Lacey

Postscript:

Oh, what you said about that "gender light switch" that you can flip and become female in the blink of an eye? Heck, YES, I'd do so! Many of us would! Too bad they don't have such a device ... Star Trek technology, right?

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Guest Ney'ite

It was not until I "found" out about me about 3 years ago that I finally remembered as early as perhaps 6 or 7, asking myself what it would be like to be a girl. Other memories I had completely suppressed were wearing some of my mom's clothes locked in the bathroom all by myself, and being tempted to play around with her makeup, but too scared that I would not be able to take it off. I also now remember that I carried a doll around with me everywhere - I loved that doll (yes, I may be stereotyping that archaic blue is for boys and pink is for girls, but when I was young, that *was* how it was).

Both my marriages had commented on how sometimes it was a little odd when we were intimate, with her feeling like she was with a woman, comments I completely discounted and had no clue what they really meant about who I really was.

Still amazes me.

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Guest eliza.d

bette, so much of what you say is idenitical to parts of my life and marriage.

im 33, and came out three months ago to everyone, first my wife...started hrt....its been 18 days of feeling normal, and went full time. im in the process of legally changing my name.

i applied to a new job as myself, no holding back, and got hired!

i say better later than never.

finally my life is my own.

Hugs,

Eliza

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Guest Donna Jean

.

I started to transition at 58 and I'm 62 now......

I worked hard all my life to keep my feelings at bay until I was up against a wall...

And then I finally realized what was going on with me....my whole life....

I live full time now......

Going back?

Back where?

Dee Jay

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Guest ricka

Hi All! Seems like there are a number of us gals who did not come to a knowledge and acceptance of ourselves until later in life. Looking back we all knew were different--somehow. We knew who were were supposed to be and endured all kinds of external pressures to be that, but few of us had any external sources/resources to guide us and inform us to be who we were born to be.

For me the suppression and repression of my identity as a female was incredibly strong. And yes it was fueled by my religious upbringing. You'd think I might have had a clue during puberty when I developed breasts like other girls----naturally, but it only made me feel more ashamed and embarrassed about myself and about my body. Paradoxically I believe it was my later, personal journey to seek a deeper faith that allowed me to discover and accept myself as a woman and to discover the amazing joyfulness of my womanhood.

Miss Ricka

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Guest Donna Jean

yeah, dee jay....back where?

not me. never.

Eliza

Not me, either.......there's no "back " to go to....

dj

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Guest

Hi Kendra,

I hid my transgender nature from myself for about 55 years. About my only childhood memory that might indicate my future was my fascination with Christine Jorgensen. But she was also the reason I hid, having been vilified in so many ways that I knew I had no chance. That crushing transphobia was even ingrained in my psyche, and it took all of those years to finally open up. It still took another five years just to admit out loud what I was feeling. Happily, for me, that was 3 years ago, and I'm now approaching a half-year of living full-time.

It's a long and torturous path that life takes, and becoming comfortable with our psyches seems to be a most difficult thing. I'm sure that others have already pointed out the value of seeing a GT - so valuable in rooting out those hidden places in your mind. I do wish you well!

Love, Megan

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Guest Lacey Lynne

Hi All! Seems like there are a number of us gals who did not come to a knowledge and acceptance of ourselves until later in life. Looking back we all knew were different--somehow. We knew who were were supposed to be and endured all kinds of external pressures to be that, but few of us had any external sources/resources to guide us and inform us to be who we were born to be.

For me the suppression and repression of my identity as a female was incredibly strong. And yes it was fueled by my religious upbringing. You'd think I might have had a clue during puberty when I developed breasts like other girls----naturally, but it only made me feel more ashamed and embarrassed about myself and about my body. Paradoxically I believe it was my later, personal journey to seek a deeper faith that allowed me to discover and accept myself as a woman and to discover the amazing joyfulness of my womanhood.

Miss Ricka

Ricka:

Hey, right on! This is SOOO true. I really love your post, so thanks for writing this. Awesome!

Peace :thumbsup: Lacey

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Guest Kendra K

Thank you all for the wonderful posts, I liked reading all of them, all of them are helpful. :) Just replying now, had family commitments over the long weekend. I tried from home over the weekend, even had a huge reply, but for some reason it didn't take.

Kendra,

I knew that I was different from a very early age but I had no idea that I was transgendered until later on and even then I did not know that there was anything that I could do about it.

Memories from childhood do not always give clear indications - playing with dolls or trucks only shows an interest often associated with a close sibling rather than any gender identity.

So often we think that we did not have the 'right' feelings early enough to be transgendered so we must be wrong and it is something else - there are no right or wrong feelings as there is no time window - it is different for everyone.

Do not be in such a hurry to dismiss therapy or to come out to anyone until you are more confident in yourself.

That does seem to fit me, that something didn't seem right as a kid. It's helpful to hear it again that there's no right feelings.

Oh, by the way, are you willing to spend $12.86 to buy THE VERY BEST book there is on the subject of transsexuality? If so, well, it'll be the best money you've spent in a very long time, believe me. Take a look at this, and, please, read some of the 5-star and 4-star reviews:

http://www.amazon.co...26519842&sr=1-1

As you read this book, especially the first half of it, you'll encounter other transsexauls' stories and feel like you're reading about you own life in AMAZING detail and you'll realize you are NOT alone in feeling this way. Check it out and see, if you want to.

Peace :friends: Lacey

Postscript:

Oh, what you said about that "gender light switch" that you can flip and become female in the blink of an eye? Heck, YES, I'd do so! Many of us would! Too bad they don't have such a device ... Star Trek technology, right?

Thanks for that book idea, I'll check on it. I'm not a Trekkie anymmore, liked it in my teen years, but that's why I love reading SciFi, gender changing happens quite often and many times it is as easy as flipping a switch. Someday right?

Hi All! Seems like there are a number of us gals who did not come to a knowledge and acceptance of ourselves until later in life. Looking back we all knew were different--somehow. We knew who were were supposed to be and endured all kinds of external pressures to be that, but few of us had any external sources/resources to guide us and inform us to be who we were born to be.

For me the suppression and repression of my identity as a female was incredibly strong. And yes it was fueled by my religious upbringing. You'd think I might have had a clue during puberty when I developed breasts like other girls----naturally, but it only made me feel more ashamed and embarrassed about myself and about my body. Paradoxically I believe it was my later, personal journey to seek a deeper faith that allowed me to discover and accept myself as a woman and to discover the amazing joyfulness of my womanhood.

Miss Ricka

Thanks Ricka. I didn't have the sexual feelings in my highschool years that other boys did, could have been my religous upbringing, could have been I felt bad about my body (I don't recall that though), could have been both. Good to read your post.

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Guest SaleneAlexis

I knew I was a female since I was six. Tried to hide and be a male for years, didn't work. Realized and accepted who I was a couple of years ago. Happy with who I am now, and wouldn't change it for the world

Stephanie

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Guest Ney'ite

bette, so much of what you say is idenitical to parts of my life and marriage.

...

This is what truly amazes me . . . how different and unique we all are, yet how in some ways we are very similar to others. It is encouraging especially to the newer ones that they truly are *not* alone in this, and that others even though they are different, share many common threads.

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gennee

I didn't know I was transgender until I was fifty-six. I always felt different all my life. I've been happier the past 6 1/2 yers than at any time in my life.

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Guest Lacey Lynne

I didn't know I was transgender until I was fifty-six. I always felt different all my life. I've been happier the past 6 1/2 yers than at any time in my life.

Gennee:

You GO, girl!

Peace :thumbsup: Lacey

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Guest Tinuviall

Hi I'm new here , just got approved today. I was very nurvous going to a psychologist just over 5 weeks ago. It was one of the best experiences of my life. The hardest part was getting out of my vehicle! I almost drove right by( I was vibrating ). I'm 41 with a wife and kids(2) and keeping everyone happy, at a great expense to myself. I chose a psychologist whith experience with gender disphoria. I was afraid that there would be a lot of scrutiny and I would have to prove myself somehow. But this wasn't the case at all! She asked if I had a female name I preferred, and weather she could use it or not. I'm not overly feminine, In mannerisms . I'm not overly masculine in appearance , I did crossdress for many years but had to hide it from the kids( my wife was ok ,I have my own place in the closit , drawr for my things) but in my case it wasn't enough. It felt like I was fooling myself. I have an appointment every 2 weeks and actualy look forward to it. The hard part is starting. ( for me ) I have come out to my mom , cousin , wife , and best friend! Wow now I need to decide where to go from here

Good luck , be true to yourself.

Tinuviall

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Guest ChloëC

Hi Tinuviall,

Welcome to Laura's! Why don't you come over to the Introduction forum and let us all get a chance to meet you!

btw, love your name, I used a variant of that a long time ago on a totally different site (hint).

Hugz

Chloë

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Ravin

I just started dealing with this trans thing this year. Even though I knew about and was accepting of trans people from pretty young, I never consciously realized it applied to me. I was always just the nerdy tomboy who had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the expectations of womanhood (ex: fight with my dad at age 12 over shaving my legs, which I was required to do). I had no brothers, so was able to get some of the father/son type of attention from my dad. I tried so hard for so long to follow in his footsteps and be the son he didn't have, even as I came around to how much I didn't want to be like him in a number of ways.

I think the main reason it took me so long was that I went baby-crazy. Until I satisfied my reproductive imperatives, my own identity was stuck on the back-burner.

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Guest Sheri-bi

My biggest stumbling block to understanding my transgendered identity was being bisexual. I hadn't distinguished my sexual orientation from my gender identity. I was one of those who thought MTFs should be happy with gay guys and FTMs should be happy with lesbians. It took a humiliating confrontation with an aggressive male for me to finally get the distinction. Some people have to learn the hard way. :) The confrontation made me re-examine my personal history. Bisexuality did not explain everything. But bisexuality and transgender identity did.

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Guest Toni I

Hi Kendra,

Thanks for your wonderful topic. As a kiddo I can remember seeing a picture of my older sister in her ballet costume and thinking how beautiful she looked. I wanted sooo much to be one of the girls and do ballet with her. As for the second part of your question, I came from a religious family, and I grew up in the country on a lake with chickens, a garden, and plenty of fresh fish. There were county cabins on both sides of our home. One summer a young gay couple came out to stay at the cabin next to us. My parents made it clear that this couple was gay and that being gay was wrong. Us kids played in their yard and made a disparaging remark and ran back into the house to tell my parents. Our tale led to them congratulating us on our discrimination. I was pretty young at the time, perhaps five or six years of age I'm not quite sure, the message was clear though. LGTB behavior would not be tolerated by my parents or family in any form, and I would not be tolerated if I told them what I was feeling. Now I am 40years old, and I have finally been able to identify some of the internal oppression that I have held on to these many years and been able to open up to my wife and my currently counselor about my past. There is a lot that I still need to work through, but I am glad to be taking one step at a time and to be moving forward in my journey. My hope is that the gender binary that holds such a strong hold on culture and supports so many of the isms will end. Until then I'll do my best to build allies around me.

Toni

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Guest ZoeG360

We all come to this juncture via different paths at different times and with amazingly different stories..

For myself, I spent all my life denying what I am, proving to myself and everyone that I was really a male. Join the Navy, go to war, get married, have kids, raise a family, build a career, work out, lift weights, all of it.

59 years later I finally figured out why I have been so incredibly unhappy all my life.

I may be slow but I catch on. :>)

This trans thing is so very hard because its so darn complicated, for us and everyone around is. Sexual identity adds a whole extra level to it all.

What I have started to learn is that in fact, I am blessed. I now get to go through puberty before I am 60! I get to spend the rest of my life rediscovering the world through new eyes. I finally belong somewhere. I can have friends, real friends, not acquaintances from whom I have to hide,

At a time when a lot of people I know are starting that slow decline into their senior years, I get to to live the life I was supposed to live, and best of all I get to be happy.

I no longer care to know why I am, that's not helpful. Now, I get to explore who I am, that's a lot more fun.

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Guest rikkicd64

We all come to this juncture via different paths at different times and with amazingly different stories..

For myself, I spent all my life denying what I am, proving to myself and everyone that I was really a male. Join the Navy, go to war, get married, have kids, raise a family, build a career, work out, lift weights, all of it.

59 years later I finally figured out why I have been so incredibly unhappy all my life.

I may be slow but I catch on. :>)

This trans thing is so very hard because its so darn complicated, for us and everyone around is. Sexual identity adds a whole extra level to it all.

What I have started to learn is that in fact, I am blessed. I now get to go through puberty before I am 60! I get to spend the rest of my life rediscovering the world through new eyes. I finally belong somewhere. I can have friends, real friends, not acquaintances from whom I have to hide,

At a time when a lot of people I know are starting that slow decline into their senior years, I get to to live the life I was supposed to live, and best of all I get to be happy.

I no longer care to know why I am, that's not helpful. Now, I get to explore who I am, that's a lot more fun.

Zoe,I am 65 and those last two lines are exactly how I feel,my happiness has led to a lot of fun and smiles and laughs.Thanks.

Rikki.... :thumbsup:

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