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Guest iamharry

Breakfast at Harry's

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If this were a proper introduction, I would give you a casual smile and shake your hand. Asking your name I would be stuck between telling you one of two.

I can remember the first time I passed like it was yesterday. Wrapped up in bandages and layers of clothes to hide the curves that developed through my puberty, it was my first time venturing into the boundaries of my physical identity. I was out with my best friend and we had managed to fulfil my dutch courage with a glass of rose wine or two before leaving the flat. A flick of my signature Zippo move to light my cigarette always seems to draw attention. She approaches. ‘Could a handsome man like you possibly spare me a light?’ No questions asked. With a smack to the back of my wrist and click of the fingers I hold a flame entranced as the nicotine and tar flow into her lungs, pumping through her bloodstream. ‘Thank you...’ ‘Harry.’ ‘Thank you Harry.’ She walks away. A sly glance and smile over her shoulder and she carries off down the street. A mysterious smile I shall never forget.

If only life were always that easy. It wouldn’t be the first time I was asked to leave the ladies’ toilets when I’ve been dressed as my biological self or been referred to as sir when passing through airport security when travelling for work. It’s not that I have an issue when someone refers to me by the physical being I so long to be, it’s the regret on their face when they realise I have two lumps on my chest and the lack of a five o’clock shadow. I don’t want to have to hear another apology because someone thought I was a biological man, I want to find the place where I can be comfortable within my skin without question over who I am.

i am Harry.

How do I take the steps to begin living each day in life, in work, in relationships as the person I am to become or to understand that I already am?

I had that awkward conversation tonight after so many months and years of hinting as to my true self. I spoke to my mum about the challenges I’ve been facing with the mixture of my physical self contradicting what have always felt inside. For as long as I can remember I’ve personified the male stereotype when it comes to dress sense, style and appearance. We talked about how I didn’t want these hourglass curves, how I couldn’t handle the fact she told me I looked pretty that time in my only pair of feminine cut jeans because I wanted to look handsome, how every day stepping out the shower all I could see what the me I want to be once I break free of this cocoon. Metaphoric butterfly. She told me she wasn’t surprised after my entire wardrobe is comprised of the male section of Urban Outfitters and H&M. She told me if it would make me happy we should go together and get the support I need to start transitioning. She told me she would make me a binder because then it can be tailored to fit me for how my body is today. We talked about surgery and what I want in the future and decided these were big decisions that we can talk about once I’m ready and am certain. I know I’m certain just now but I just wanted to break her in gently. I’m overwhelmed with how she took it so well, although she did say she wanted to call me James because that’s what I was going to be called when I was born. I think Harry James could suffice, after all your parents normally name you, right?

(Audrey Hepburn reference succeed but totally unrelated to any of this content.)

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Harry,

It sounds like you are already well on your way. Congrats!

You mum seems to be a fine woman. Her support will be crucial, you are fortunate...

Tell us more when you get a chance..

Love, Svenna

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. . . That is an amazing first-time-passing story, and I love it. Actually I'd like to make it mine, if that were possible! I've passed to the occasional harried (heh) waitress or store clerk, but none of those were moments worthy of making into a story. Much less the full-blown film noir I was seeing when I read your post. Your life, it is awesome.

And so is your mom, obviously. Harry James sounds natural and elegant (again in that masculine, dignified, film noir kind way), and being offered a home-made binder is such a wonderful affirmation of your true self. If/when she does make one, I'd be interested to hear how she made it.

Keeping my fingers crossed that the next steps you take go as well as the first one did!

(Audrey Hepburn reference highly appreciated.)

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Harry

You write so beautifully!

Lizzie

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Thank you so much for the bio, Harry. I agree with Lizzie, you write very well.

You and my son have something in common; he buys almost all his clothes at Urban Outfitters. I didn't know they had outlets in England.

You are incredibly lucky to have such a supportive parent. That will make your journey so much easier and less stressful. I wish you well, and look forward to reading more of your posts.

HUGS

Carolyn Marie

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I have to admit my mother is fantastic. Honestly don't know why I worried so much about her reaction, maybe something to do with letting her down?. Even last night for example, I was heading out for a night out and she came to me whilst I was getting ready and helped me bind with my bandages. With regards the home-made binder, she said that she use to have to make something similar when she worked within the healthcare profession. Hopefully I'll travel back up from work this Thursday and she'll have made me something. It's the thought that counts ay?

Roux, you can have my moment and treasure it as your own. It definitely seemed surreal at the time way back when and it's one moment that I will not forget for a long while. I think it's fine at a glance or as part of a casual passing but my biggest worry would be how this could have an impact on potential relationships with ladies. Although, dependant on my long term decisions within transistion, if people cannot appreciate me for who I am then why would I want them to be part of my life anyway?

Thanks for the support, all I can say is I write from what's inside. Just wait 'till what's inside can permanently be with us on the outside. Overwhelming ;)

I've not seen any Urban Outfitters when I've been working down here in England Carolyn but in Glasgow it's pretty but the only place I could spend a whole day in walking around in circles. It's one of my very favourite stores - so expensive though!

I'm thinking that my next step will be to make an appointment at my local doctor's surgery and see what they recommend as the best course of action. I would love to start living full time as Harry, however, with my stature within work and my lack of a proper comfortable binder and also T; I'm not sure how soon this would be feasible.

iamHarry

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I have to admit my mother is fantastic. Honestly don't know why I worried so much about her reaction, maybe something to do with letting her down?

I get you on that. Glad she proved you wrong!

And that you're likely to get a real binder so soon. I'm small-chested, but nevertheless, the few times I tried bandages were, uh, slightly less than comfortable.

Roux, you can have my moment and treasure it as your own.

Thanks! I'm super pleased. =)

[M]y biggest worry would be how this could have an impact on potential relationships with ladies. Although, dependant on my long term decisions within transistion, if people cannot appreciate me for who I am then why would I want them to be part of my life anyway?

This really needs to be written on everyone's bathroom mirror, I think.

I'm thinking that my next step will be to make an appointment at my local doctor's surgery and see what they recommend as the best course of action. I would love to start living full time as Harry, however, with my stature within work and my lack of a proper comfortable binder and also T; I'm not sure how soon this would be feasible.

Seems like there are a few threads around here that reference gender therapists and transitioning in Scotland, if you're interested in reading those. Let us know what happens at the appointment when it happens, too.

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Ok, found you Harry !

(I have kind of copied this from the intro bit in case you don't go there any more)

Without wanting to repeat anything that has already been said, let me now say that guess what....you are as normal as anybody else. The reason? Well there is no fixed normality (well not here in Lancashire anyway :lol: ).

I happen to have some really great FtM friends, a couple of whom are quite young, and both on their way to being their true selves. In fact one of them I play squash with every week. I beat him every week but the margin is getting smaller every time as he gets stronger and I get weaker. :mellow:

Just keep chilled. There is no need to feel out of it, if for no other reason than the fact that there are so many more out there like you living 'normal lives' as their true selves and being happy.

Bye for now.

Debbie :)

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