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WeaselSoup

I'm new here. An introduction...

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WeaselSoup

I have literally only just accepted the label non-binary in the last few days, but I have always felt this way. I now know I am fine and can be mentally healthy if I'm just left alone but I was raised in a strict Mormon household which expected girls to act in a very constricted way. Before puberty I was fantasizing about never getting my period or growing breasts and being taken to the doctor where he would say that there had been a mistake and I was boy. I thought every woman in Mormonism must feel the same way, because being a woman sucked so much for me. I wanted to transition before I even knew that people really did that. But I also knew that I was attracted to men and this made me keep my mouth shut, because if I did become a man somehow I would be gay. Although I didn't know whether being trans was "wrong" until later, I knew that being gay was "wrong". My parents would say now that they would have accepted me, whatever I was, but I heard things as a kid that made me believe that I was bad.

 

I was Mormon until I was 21 or so and I internalized everything that they taught me. I had crippling self-esteem problems. I was miserable, and every time I did something that suited me it was something I wasn't supposed to do. I went to engineering school and people thought it was an expensive hobby. "At least you'll be able to teach your kids maths until the end of high school". I love engineering and science, particularly computer science. I remember wanting to program computers in primary school because I was fascinated by my dad's one. I would hear that it was selfish for a woman to work outside the home often on Sundays, and on these dumb-ass forced dates at church as soon as the guy heard what he did he would turn away and not speak to me for the rest of the night. I didn't even intend to break the rules -- it was an unwritten rule that I broke.

 

I got so used to people being disappointed in me that I didn't even choose to hang around with people who accepted me. I thought I needed to hang around people with high standards because that would encourage me to be the best I could be. So even after I found out some things about Mormonism which caused me to leave my self-esteem didn't improve. At 24, I had been cutting since my teens and had just survived three intensive care stays and months of secure psych ward because of suicide attempts. Despite being very angry to have survived each time, people still assumed I did it for attention. Apparently my mother's therapist told her she had to set strict boundaries and not accept my -crap-, which basically meant she could do things which were legitimate triggers for me and threaten to throw me out if I reacted.

 

I was 25 before I found and accepted the friendship of someone who knew all of this and accepted me, and that was life-changing. I managed to leave home and I've been allowed to be myself for a while now. I'm usually indifferent to being in a female body as long as the fact I am female is not the focus -- I hate hate HATE being a "woman in tech" but I get that a lot. I had to quit my engineering degree because of my psych issues but I went back and I've got a computer science degree now. I'm almost finished my Masters of Cybersecurity. I've only just started talking to a select few people about how I've been feeling about my gender. I don't think I can overstate how big an impact those feelings have had on my life but I always thought I'm invisible and there was no one like me. I didn't think I was "trans" because if I'm just left alone I don't feel the need to transition and possibly if I wasn't in such a repressive environment self-esteem issues wouldn't have developed. Basically, I felt like my problems weren't "real" enough, even though I've been trying to work through them for almost two decades.

 

I'm really hoping I can help out any other people who feel the same. I went to suicide prevention training because I wanted to help people who ever felt as bad as I did. I've found that helping lift other people up helps me cope as well.

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tracy_j

Hi, Welcome to the forum :)

 

Thank you for your introduction. I am glad you have managed to turn things around and make good progress. Your upbringing will sound very familiar to many. Parents do have difficulty understanding, and can easily be swayed by what the see as expert opinion. Most religion, whatever faith, is pretty much tied back into the past so unless the local leader, priest etc, is very enlightened there is often little support. The words you have written so far, even though unhappy in your earlier days, will help some to understand that there is light at the end of the tunnel. I am glad that you now have found it.

 

Please fell free to join in. You will find people here friendly and understanding as they have progressed similar journeys or are just beginning and unhappy.

 

Tracy

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Jani

Hey welcome!  I'm sorry to read that your youth was difficult but it seems you are doing better now.

On 8/30/2018 at 4:02 AM, WeaselSoup said:

I was 25 before I found and accepted the friendship of someone who knew all of this and accepted me, and that was life-changing. I managed to leave home and I've been allowed to be myself for a while now.

This is always a turning point, being away from past influences and being able to determine your own path.  Unfortunately family and religions can be restricting since they want you to conform to their ideals.  You need to be who you are.  You are not invisible!  You are real.  There is value in who you are and want you do.  

 

Wow a degree in cyber security is awesome.  I can imagine there are lots of opportunities in that field of endeavor.  Best of luck.  

 

Helping others is a wonderful way to get involved and help yourself at the same time.  Thanks for sharing your story.  

 

Jani  

 

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AsTheCrow

Welcome, WeaselSoup! You've found a great place and we're glad to have you.

 

You've been through a lot, and I'm sorry you had to go through it. But I've got to confess, I love reading people's stories of hardship -- because it means they're still around to tell the tale.

 

Yeah, you've been through a lot of things you didn't deserve, but you have come through it with knowledge of yourself, a field of study, and training to help people through the worst times in their lives. AND you're about to get a Master's degree? Damn, you should be SO PROUD of yourself. I certainly am.

 

I hope to see you around here for a long time to come! You have a lot to offer the community, and hopefully we can offer something for you in return.

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Carolyn Marie

Welcome to Trans Pulse, hon.   I understand how isolated you've felt, and I'm sorry for that situation.  But things do change, and perhaps coming here will be a step towards positive change in you life.  You will find, I'm certain, others who feel misunderstood and alone.  Sharing your stories can only be of help.

 

HUGS

 

Carolyn Marie

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