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Guest RachelMichaels

3rd times a harm, not charm?

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Guest RachelMichaels

I suppose like many here, you've been close to wanting to just exit this world as I have. In retrospect on the first time all it took was the drugstore clerk to say "Have a nice day' as I was buying only a pack of razor blades and return home where I had cleaned the bathtub and written a 10 page goodbye note. Silly huh? That's all it took. I am amazed at how I thought I was in control of all my faculties, heightened and focused far above my usual self and had put several hours into preparing up to the point then BAM I came out of a fog instantly, pretty sure I looked at him with instantaneous teary eyes, don't remember if I said anything because I was, for lack of a better word, shell shocked. Maybe someone who has been thru this before knows how easily such an intended course of action suddenly defies the reality you thought you were in. This was in 2004 but remember it as if it was yesterday, as with pretty much any bad memory my whole life.

Back then my mother was still alive and had 4 brothers and they knew what I was going thru(it was a serious legal charge) and a lawyer informed me I may have to serve time in jail. That was what tipped the scale. Jail. Never been, never had a friend in there. It was based on news, movies anything in the public eye that described the bad parts about it. Well, I ended up in there alright and surprisingly it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. But that was only because I can draw well. With such a talent I became one of the few people who found a special place between the blacks and white inmates cause I drew them tattoo designs, cards to send to people on the outside and even taught one person how to draw a rose. Funny tho how I have this retrospect in spite of getting in a fight with a black guy cause I wouldn't try and redo a portrait I did for him earlier(don't draw faces well) and another time when a dozen blacks ganged up on 2 whites I was the only person who tried to save them, but also the only person who ended up in the hospital to get the back of my head stitched up from a bar of soap in a sock. But at any rate, I got thru it cause of the basic relief it was compared to what I thought it was going to be and I had family to support me and give me hope. One terrible thing happened when my sentence was almost up tho; my mother died. Ugh. The last time I saw her alive was thru the glass partition of the jail visitor room. That probably affected me more than I know, cause I was her 'favorite son' according to her as she liked the fact that I seemed to get all the natural talent in music and art from her side of the family, which were the same going way back to Crete, off the coast of Greece. I shelved the tears cause it was too unbearable and even to this day I have an occasional dream where she is in it and I seem to act like she never died at all, so my shelving the pain was quite successful, but to the point of a too-far-gone stage of denial. None of my brothers lived in the state I did and I went about in a trance it seems for a few days till a woman approached me in a bar I went to see a band play at. She was drinking and smoking and standing there dancing to the music and broke the ice with me cause I was just a lump on the bar stool. She came back to my motel room and yea yea that. Things went remarkably well too. She bought a house and asked me to move in with her. It was like an angel had come to save me. My life took an amazing turn when I thought it was about to be over again.

Skipping thru time several years to today. We broke up and my family seems to have abandoned me. I left a decent paying job I had for a couple years when the boss ran off with payroll when the economy crashed a few years ago and just picked up the phone and went out on my own as a self-employed handyman and did quite well at it, never even having to pursue any work very hard, it was word of mouth that kept me doing well for a few years. Winters were tough with any snow or rain tho but I'd simply use my one credit card to get by till spring and the return of more work again. Well we had some bad winters and the economy crashed and I got way in debt. My landlord was a friend of a friend who let me slide on rent many many times but finally, which was a couple weeks ago, he got tired of it I suppose and decided to sell my place. Someone I know bought the place but they are over their head and have to raise the rent far beyond what I have been able to pay for a couple years, so I have to move out by the end of March.

Not a biggie most would say, lots of people go thru that and survive thru it. I know, as I had done that myself and in fact the low points ended up having more good come from them than bad, but it's not that which is why I am here cause I wouldn't need to be. I have experience at it and actually kinda like change. It's refreshing and always gives me insight and new experiences.

But this time Is WAY different. Being on the tail-end of winter I haven't the funds it takes to move this quickly. Plus I have a ton of stuff people have given me over the past several years or brought home from remodeling and demo jobs. After about 8 years living by myself it is a horrible mess. I'll have to have a big garage sale in a couple weeks, put stuff in storage, throw away what's left I don't want to take with me till I get on my feet again, and all by myself. Living alone and working alone for the past 7 or 8 years hasn't provided much in the way of friends to help so this is a huge burden, but still, I can probably handle it. Plus I got a court case that will cost me about $300 the end of March for Georgia's "Move Over" law; not getting my vehicle over a lane when a cop is on the side of the road. The finances involved between here and the end of the month seems to suggest I won't make it! But still, that's not even the tougher parts. Had a hernia developing for months and it's about at the critical stage bothering me when I lift heavy items or strain myself and as a handyman where all jobs are unique this has ben tough to deal with. But wait, there's more!

I have an incurable eye disease, diagnosed back in the 80's and fortunately the laser surgery to help was all paid for, about $10K worth. But I have a different eye problem developing over the last few months and while it concerns me of course, I can't afford to get it looked at as I have just been trying to survive this last winter. It was tougher than the rest cause my regular list of clients little honey-do lists I went thru these past 7-8 years has finally dwindled down to the point of having to start advertising or something, but that is not smart yet cause I have no insurance and customers I don't know won't like that cause it's normal and expected, but again, money for such things. I went back last week to my former employer(who ran off with payroll) and asked for work and I started 3 days a week last week and this may help immensely in the financial sense to actually make it, adding my potential garage sale sales to help as well. What a relief, yes?

Not so fast. I can't go and room with any friends till I get better situated and I have even had a few offers of a place in their homes. I also can't get a place and get a roommate to help with costs or I would have done that by now where I am. This sounds odd you ask, what's up with that? I am a convicted felon. That alone isn't so tough as there's tons of those out there. My problem is much bigger than that tho. I am a convicted child molester. Wait please it's not what you think, really. I had been dating a girl 10 years who had 2 kids. The kids called me dad and we all got along quite well for years and nothing was out of the ordinary.Then she quit her 100K a year job and decided to open a restaurant. She was an excellent cook so it was okay by me, tho that would mean I would no longer be a stay at home dad which she appointed me as for the last couple years at her well paying job. I would now be working with her at the restaurant. Ugh. Well, one day a couple years before this when I was watching the kids, I had just gotten out of the shower in our bedroom when her daughter came in unannounced, which was typical, to use her moms hairbrush, also typical. There I stood naked and decided not to cover up, as my girlfriend and I had discussions about being naked in front of the kids and decided to have a relaxed attitude about it. She ran around naked up to 13 where she lived rurally cause she could and wanted her kids to not be the typical uptight American about nudity and I had the opposite, with 4 brothers no one wanted to be seen naked at home and one older brother in particular seemed to enjoy making me feel self-conscious about myself in front of his friends and mine and especially about nudity, which I seemed to like more than my other brothers, and made me feel like there was something wrong with me for masturbating, as he caught me a couple times and I started wondering if there was due to this. So when I got older and wiser I always had the attitude that I will not pass along such a crappy attitude about such things and if I ever had a kid would make sure they thought it no big deal. So oddly enough with such different ways to reach the same result, there I was, in another pretty typical situation, no big deal. Here's where the problem was. Her daughter asked if she could touch 'it'. I suppose I was interested more in her reaction to this than anything else and it hit me totally from left field. Me then, always having retained the kid in myself anyway as I had found that it seemed quite responsible for all the natural music and artistic talent I had, viewing the world thru a childs eyes. Never wanted to grow up anyway. My dad never understood me as he was all about drinking Schlitz beer, smoking cigars and having his kids in sports. I wanted none of that and grew up thinking that's what it meant to be a grown up. So I was a kid inside all my life, who was given the responsibility to watch her 2 kids and this stupid immature kid in me said 'yes' and so she did touch it. Just once, then kind of half-smiled, shrugged her shoulders and left our bathroom. That was all that happened. Stupid, yes. Immature, yes. Dumb,yes and anything else you wanna call it, but it happened so quickly before my better judgement could stop me, but fortunately that was it. I of course thought my girlfriend is gonna fry me when she finds out, as she should have. But she didn't. She knew and was rather attracted originally to the kid in me as she liked the way I viewed the world, unique to people our age. So her daughter never said anything nor did I and it was that way for the next 2 years.

The shi* hit the fan when in finally came up in a conversation she had with her daughter about the birds and the bees. By this time working and being together 24/7 had started taking a toll on our relationship. I even was told thru 2 friends that she was a control freak. I sensed she was jealous or something when I wanted to do anything outside of family but never tried to analyze it. So needless to say things got bad quickly. I told her I was wanting to leave her shortly before she found out and I did, moving quickly out of state to live temporarily with a brother. Long story short she hated me for leaving her with the restaurant as I did so much there by myself and she evidently couldn't run it without me tho she tried, even asking 2 family members to help her. As it was going under she pursued charges and she made up wild accusations and lied under oath just to spite me, and in front of the judge when I heard these charges I was furious my lawyer didn't say a thing(he was just someone I got off the internet and wanted me to go to a jury trial cause it meant a lot more money for him I thought) so I blurted out to the judge what actually happened, and with that simple confession she found me guilty even in such a case mild compared to most cases but at the time all people with such a charge were lumped together under one name, child molester. Even repeat offenders who had raped kids and all the others. I was freaking out of course. But I served 6 months and that's when my mom died, just a week before I was to get out. I was on probation for the next 7 years, where I was required to attend therapy classes every week for 3 years, could not drink alcohol(which was standard and alcohol wasn't even involved) was subjected to random urine tests, house searches(the police came by unannounced every month for 7 years, a polygraph every year and couldn't go to the parks, museums or even McDonalds due to the playscape they had. Anywhere kids congregate. I thought this was a bit much to the point of ludicrous when I realized I could live above an adult bookstore if I chose to but could not live within 1,000 ft of a church! Crazy! Then a year or so out of jail they changed the law where we all had to register as a sex offender for life, instead of ending when probation was over.

So that brings me to now. I have been off probation several years and can now live wherever I want, go wherever I want and most things are back to normal. Except anywhere I live people can find out where those like me live and in some ways I think that's a good idea, but for those who had more serious charges than I. If I get desired to get a roommate now I would have to tell them all this, as they would have to expect the cops to drop by once a month and any neighbor who did a check on where sex-offenders lived near them, there they would be, with me, and suffer anything that could happen, having things thrown in their yard, trees toilet papered, people screaming at them to move away and there are cases where offenders like myself have been searched for by people who don't understand the various levels of offenders and murdered 2 of them the first year I was free again. Don't think I live on edge at home alone all the time. Can't own a gun, so I keep a knife and an axe on my nightstand and will have to live this way for the rest of my life.

Sure now we can apply to get off this registry and I tried that. My therapist said I should be able to, as did the polygrapher, as did the independent shrink who interviewed me as part of the process of trying to get off the registry, as did my new and better lawyer who had handled offenders cases before me. But did I? NO. They were all confused by the outcome and you can bet my reaction was tenfold. I have been in a kind of shock ever since. Later I heard from a cop that came by one month that they refuse everyones request the first time thru and to try again, but by the time I heard this that window had closed. Now I must wait till 2024 to try again.

I would like to add in my defense here as well that when I got out of jail I took my ex to small claims court as she didn't want to give me my belongings when I left the state, and lied about owning what was mine. I tried to subpoena her kids to the stand cause she always drilled in them to tell the truth and I thought I could get her for perjury for lying so damn much but then she said I had told the kids if they ever told about me molesting the girl I would harm them and they were afraid of me. I was livid. To say I would harm her child, I couldn't handle that. Seemed she could lie all the way thru and I never had a chance. I became suicidal but the girl who met me in the bar after my mom died paid for a shrink and got me some medication to control that desire, bought me a suit for court and hired one of the best lawyers in town to face her once more in Superior Court where she made up even more lies to try and bury me as deep as she could. Had to wait 6 months for our court date and when it arrived and had a bit of evidence of her lying we showed up...and she didn't. She moved out of state, far to the northeastern US so they dropped the new charges but the original remained. I am forced to register for life and get visited every month, unannounced by 1 to 3 cops, till the day I die it seems.

So now with having to move in a few weeks, at a time of the year I can't afford to, can't room with those who said I could, nor try and offset costs by getting a roommate myself for whatever place I can afford and am causing my friends confusion because they don't know why I am in such a dilemma as unless you hear the while story the charge itself sounds horrible and nearly all will never speak to me again, and after living alone for almost a decade now, not dating anyone, feeling so alone as my brothers totally ignore me even tho they know the whole story(I feel they blame me for my moms heart attack she had due to me being released from jail soon and worrying about the future of her naturally talented son she adored) and I tend to agree and have carried that weight with me ever since 2005 when she died. Add several health issues (which I didn't even cover all of them above) and the fact that I am 61 now, still just a broke but talented soul but now who carries this burden of being someone many people would hate more than a terrorist, I am beginning to fear it's all going to come to a head in a few weeks and I'm going to do something I thought might never be considered by me for a 3rd time. I've been Googling methods of suicide and think of it as soon as I awake each day lately and it just seems inevitable. It just seems like all roads are pointing in this direction. No family or friends support to feel like anyone even wants me around, which I had the first 2 times of feeling this way. I have decided on a couple ways to end it all and am starting to obsess between deciding which will be the most successful and least painful. I am not in a good space and that is why I am here and I guess I just wanted to leave a more correct and truthful story to the end of me behind than what would surface without me doing so. Even tho I feel no one even cares and is more to enlighten just one person in the future who looks back at our family tree and decides to see why this branch of it ended so badly. I am better than that, love children and animals, want to inspire people with my art and music and other skills I have, but it all seems to be fading away and there's nothing I can do to stop a train that has more power than me this time. May as well lay on the damn tracks and hope reincarnation really happens, so I get another chance to get it right after all. I hope just one person reads this but I am so sorry it is so long-winded I expect no one will, till after I am gone. But so be it. At least I tried to set the record straight and go knowing I was truthful when my ex lied many times, under oath, and got away with it. And that is just not right. And I suffer over and over and am tagged a monster by society when all I did was something stupid and immature, and meanwhile someone who murdered someone and spent many years in prison may live right next to you and you have no way of knowing that. There is no registry for them. Just me. A monster. One who deserved to die, so good riddance when he's gone!

End note: Partly due to wanting to reinvent myself totally, in 2012 I started cross-dressing to be able to have any kind of relations with anyone again, as I felt with my past and my age, who would want me? I was somewhat bisexual but never got into it much. As a trans named Rachel however, I had quite a lot of fun and new experiences to reinvigorate my life and everyone(my 200 new friends) on Facebook knows me as Rachel and doesn't know my real name or have seen me in boi-mode. It's been a little tough at times, yet always strangely unique and wonderful, but all that isn't going to save me now. That was a diversion that worked well. Now I am feeling my past has somehow taken over my present and has learned how to do me in this time.

 

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MaryEllen

Hello Rachel, Wow! To say life hasn't been kind to you would be an understatement. What's past is past and can't be changed. The present and future is the only thing that matters now. Although it seems pretty bleak right now, things can improve. Have you tried any of the resources listed in the link below? Many groups can help find housing, jobs, legal help,etc. Don't give up.  Even though you're going through some hard times, there can be a better life ahead if you persevere. 

Have you joined the chat here? The chat mods are trained counselors and can help you with advice on how to better your situation. Even though your troubles seem insurmountable, there can be better times ahead. Just don't give up. We're here for you and we care.

Hugs,

MaryEllen

https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&rlz=1C1AVNC_enUS679US679&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=Transgender+support+groups+in+Alpharetta,+Georgia&*

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Charlize

     Rachel,  Thank you for sharing your story.

   There is an expression that helped me as i struggled with addiction: "one day at a time".  I can make it through pretty much anything if i can see it's not forever.  The other one i love is: do the next right thing.......Mary Ellen mentioned one of them, the chatrooms.  Keep reading out!  You have a great deal to share with others.

 

Hugs,

 

Charlize

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Guest RachelMichaels

Thank you two for responding. It's almost just that and nothing to do with what you said that affected me at first glance. To know someone is out there listening, and more importantly is even after I wrote it all out (for the first time anywhere) you still did.

I worked so hard the last 3 days doing manual labor mostly and it's 11pm and I haven't had supper yet as I got home late and a Facebook friend I barely know got my phone number from a friend and called me and we spoke for over 3 hours. She gave me some important insight and information on 2 of the things that were bothering me a lot(housing and hernia) that may help immensely. I am too tired to even go to the links provided here but sure I will soon enough, as well as checking out chat.

So between her and you, I see a sliver of light already. I had all but totally convinced myself that wasn't possible but now feel I may have been wrong. So much still to do regardless of this but I am already sensing a slight feeling it could be just another needed major change in my life and not the end of it after all. Seems my speeding out of control freight train has slowed and may not wreck after all. Shocked that could happen, but smiling inside that it did. Thanks again.

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MaryEllen

The key words are, "don't give up". :)

 

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Guest RachelMichaels

Was hoping to feel better tonight after a long conversation last night that gave me a ray of hope but since I haven't spoken with my landlord yet(that's planned for Sunday) and called the low-cost medical place(closed till Tues) as my friend suggested, I am hoping it is only due to over working my body in a short period of time while under the heavy weight of things my mind was obsessing on. My whole body feels like a lightly clenched fist but I know it's best I push on, as all this manual work I've been doing helps take my mind off things and is going to help me have the finances to go...somewhere by months end after all. 

The link you provided I may look at further when I have more energy. I had tried a few things locally back around 2012 and they left me frustrated to find that I can't get help at low or no cost and with so much to do in such a short time right now I can't see myself driving an hour or more to Atlanta to sit in a circle and tell each other our problems and believe that will do much good, although when I was required to do just that as part of my probation it did help some in hearing the other guys reporting how bad their lives were going, with wives and kids and divorces to be dealt with, and I found it made my problems seem not so bad after all. 

I am seeing already that the worst thing I was doing lately was stacking all my problems together, one upon the other and seeing them as one entity so big I had no way to defeat it and I think the best relief from that was my friend who called last night and tried to instill in my head to chip away at one problem at a time and so far it seems to be working a bit, even in the early stage. Another friend I hope to talk to more this weekend said some interesting things in a brief online chat with me a day ago that I want to hear more on, as he rose from the ashes of homelessness and despair and suicidal thoughts to an amazing person in my circle of friends that is well liked and respected as well as successful and feel he may give me some much needed inspiration. He told me something he was told that helped him that I find myself pondering a lot since he said it which was 'Your pain doesn't end with suicide, you just give it to somebody else'. Certainly a line that can make a person like me think twice about it now. I wouldn't want to do that. If I can't just fade away and cause no one to hurt when I do, I have enough sense not to do that.

I hope.

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Charlize

Rachel, so glad to read your post and see that you are getting some support through what must be very dificult times.   am lucky to have the rooms of recovery where i can share and hear of how others struggles and the strategies they use to stay sober regardless of what life throws at them.  I know i can dwell on the seemingly impossible work that lies ahead.  As i tend to project the worst scenario the mountain grows even bigger.  That is another place that just getting through each day sober and doing a bit helps.  We have a member that i see at times who writes:  "I am enough....I do enough."   You are not alone in your struggle.  Keep reaching out as you can.

 

Hugs,

 

Charlize

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Guest RachelMichaels

Thank you for your words Charlize and for you and the others I am happy to report I've reached a plateau(of sorts) for now.

Shortly after I last wrote things had taken a slight turn for the worse.  A phone convo with my old landlord seemed pointless except for the tension he caused me about Georgia Law and 2 months tenants get before their belongings can be tossed into the street but my Real Estate friend convinced me the law there favors the tenant and in talking with the new landlord and his wife a few days later they had talked with him as well and in turn was going to serve me legal papers to start the eviction process last Friday if things remained the same. While my heart started pounding again my friend asked me if I had offered x amount of money to at least delay all this. Yes, I had offered a few hundred and the offer to do the labor to fix my place up for them but that was not good enough and while my rent had remained $550 the entire time I lived here they said it could get $850 originally but now said 11 or 12 hundred, and in my search for a new place had seen such prices and was depressing on top of the fact nothing was appearing available, but with a new part time job I started with an ex employer I soon had the money to offer him $500 and with $300 he owed me for work on his home slated to go to fixing my truck(he's been my mechanic)it appeased them enough to halt the legal process and I now have till the end of April instead of March to vacate.

So for now I am enjoying a quick break away from Googling suicide and freaking about having nowhere to go and losing my belongings thru a quick garage sale, give aways, left for trash or even all of it being thrown into the street. I am instead starting to collect empty boxes for packing the small stuff while I keep my eyes peeled for rental signs, and even tho I have already branched out further than I wanted to live from the new part time job I need to sustain me after a move, I have had the chance to ask a few local friends also know I am looking. Also, my employer, whom after leaving him in the economy crash was where I had become a self-employed handyman, had also become a valuable customer that had provided me with a lot of work these past few years, and he recently offered to get my truck fixed and deduct it slowly from my wages, so that was super news as well. 

So again it seems 'guardian angels' have strolled in at the last minute as they have done in the past, where I had convinced myself this time was different and they weren't coming and no one cares enough to help me thru this one, but am getting those much needed breaks I could not conjure up on my own. I now have the time to think so much more clearly before round 2 come the end of April and from what my Real Estate friend says, it is only after that when the legal process can begin again so if I fail to find a place by then I will be okay, except for having someone who was a good friend, a mechanic and now landlord in one person, hating on me from where they live, across the street. 

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