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reyindium

post therapy/marital issues

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reyindium

This may be a little long, so I apologize in advance but I need support/opinions from folks in the community who did their transition/coming out while married. 

 

I had my first therapy appointment. My gender therapist is a cool dude and I felt at ease with him right away. I will be seeing him every other week for the indefinite future and I'm grateful for it.


That's the good news.

Here's the other side of it.

When my spouse asked how therapy went, I was honest. And something must have finally sunk in with him about my gender identity because he started crying, which he never does. And it wasn't great, because for the 10 years we've been together, I've expressed my gender fluidly but with strong masculine expression and have told him I've always had a male identity.  He never gave me any clue that he didn't acknowledge/understand or accept this fact about me.

Except now, he apparently claims he's never seen me as a man ever at any point. It was really a slap to the face. Because my gender stuff isn't new news, you know? We've talked about it. He's seen me cry over it, angst over it. I haven't hidden my clothes or my involvement in the lbgtq community. And I've openly expressed my maleness to him and not once did he ever say..."Yeah, about that, I don't accept or acknowledge that about you." I have always seen us as a queer couple. But he even had the gall to tell me I "could have my cake and eat it too because girls can dress however they want and no one cares". Huge swing and miss there, buddy. That is not what this is about.

 

He insists he wouldn't love me "if" I were a boy because he isn't into guys. He agrees that if I changed my body I would still be "me"/the same person...but still insists he wouldn't love me anymore. I think he's confusing romantic attraction with sexual, but if he's not.....then he is cheapening our entire relationship. My relationship and our life together is reduced to my physical form. I wouldn't be insulted if his reply would've been, "Yeah I'd still love you but I wouldn't get it up for you". Since he identifies as straight, that at least makes sense to me. Is it weird that this makes me feel objectified? I feel as though he's reduced me to a pair of breasts and hairless skin.

My spouse is throwing contradiction at me from every direction. From the beginning, we have had an agreement that he could explore sex outside our marriage. He hasn't ever done it but when I brought it up again, as a solution to sexual incompatibility should I physically transition, he claims he's too monogamous for that. Monogamous how exactly? He supposedly wouldn't love me anymore and wouldn't want to sleep with me anymore, so where is he attaching this sense of commitment/loyalty? I'm so lost. 

 

Guess I know what I'll be talking about in therapy next visit.. 

There's hardly any stories about there of straight men staying with trans partners. I feel like me admitting I was transgender was as good as me signing divorce papers and it's devastating. (One of the many reasons I was in denial so long, probably.)

An irrational part of me hopes my therapist can help me repress my transgender self and I can go back in the closet. But I know that is not what he's going to do. I also don't want to go back in the closet. I just don't want my marriage to end. 

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MaryMary

How do you say that in english? "I feel you"? I understand what you write. I'm divorced now and I often say that the landscape of my mind where "sexual orientation" is built look like an post apocalyptic wasteland.... It's been 5 years now and I still have the impression that love is all about the sexual organ in reality. I often feel that others don't see it but that I get to see the backstage of love, you know? It's not pretty. The worst part for me is that when I divorced everybody was saying that she was right to leave me and that "I had it coming". That part, going to family reunion and doing activities with friends and they tell you that is the worst. People smile and are very cool with me but I really felt like people were putting it on me and refuse to see me sad. I still have a hard time with all of this. I hope for the best for you and that things will turn out ok.

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QuestioningAmber

So one thing my wife's therapist has told her since I have come out is that it will take time for things to adjust. I am in a similar situation where my wife isn't sure how she feels about staying with someone who identifies as a woman, that isn't what she feels she got when we got married. I have questioned my identity before, but wasn't as clear as I could have been with her, but that is partially because I didn't know how I felt about it.

 

I would also feel objectified, I know how that feels because the inverse has come up. That is very valid. It hurts.

 

The only advice I might give right now is give it some time and work through things in therapy. Your husband may come around given some time. It is harder for men I wonder because of the homophobic nature we were brought up in. Guys can barely talk to each other, let alone kiss and love each other. It may take him some time to adjust to the real you.

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Jani

I'm glad you enjoyed your appointment and I hope they all go well for you. 

 

As for your spouse, he is correct able women being able to wear whatever and no one caring.  But he obviously never saw beyond the outer shell of this, just accepting you for who you are and not looking deeper.   I could say not good, but we're all different in how we process things.  My spouse is certainly different than me.  

 

He may be throwing contradictions because he is confused and thats what we do when we are uncertain.  You've probably heard it a hundred times, spouses transition too, along side us in their own way.  

 

Keep the lines of communication open.

 

Jani  

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reyindium
37 minutes ago, MaryMary said:

How do you say that in english? "I feel you"? I understand what you write. I'm divorced now and I often say that the landscape of my mind where "sexual orientation" is built look like an post apocalyptic wasteland.... It's been 5 years now and I still have the impression that love is all about the sexual organ in reality. I often feel that others don't see it but that I get to see the backstage of love, you know? It's not pretty. The worst part for me is that when I divorced everybody was saying that she was right to leave me and that "I had it coming". That part, going to family reunion and doing activities with friends and they tell you that is the worst. People smile and are very cool with me but I really felt like people were putting it on me and refuse to see me sad. I still have a hard time with all of this. I hope for the best for you and that things will turn out ok.

Thank you. If I recall correctly, you responded to a previous post of mine where I explained how hurt and betrayed I was by my spouse's superficial sense of love. You had a very similar response from your (ex) spouse. I'm really sorry. You and I both must have backstage passes to the same crapshow. I struggle with feeling guilty over my trans identity so if someone told me it was "all my fault", I'd be inclined to agree. You say you still struggle with all this...how long has it been for you if I might ask?  

 

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reyindium
50 minutes ago, QuestioningAmber said:

So one thing my wife's therapist has told her since I have come out is that it will take time for things to adjust. I am in a similar situation where my wife isn't sure how she feels about staying with someone who identifies as a woman, that isn't what she feels she got when we got married. I have questioned my identity before, but wasn't as clear as I could have been with her, but that is partially because I didn't know how I felt about it.

 

I would also feel objectified, I know how that feels because the inverse has come up. That is very valid. It hurts.

 

The only advice I might give right now is give it some time and work through things in therapy. Your husband may come around given some time. It is harder for men I wonder because of the homophobic nature we were brought up in. Guys can barely talk to each other, let alone kiss and love each other. It may take him some time to adjust to the real you.

Thank you, I know he needs to come to therapy with me or even on his own. He would benefit from therapy even if I wasn't transgender. Like you mentioned, I feel like I failed on many levels communicate it properly...since in the end he still didn't "see" me. 

I appreciate you validating the objectification feeling. I felt so reduced by his words but I wondered if I was reacting in an oversensitive way and wanted an outsiders perspective on that.

I think society socializes both males and females in unhealthy ways. I don't buy into the whole toxic masculinity thing. All that #nohomo crap that straight guys do in Western culture is exhausting. Is it weird that I expected more from my husband? He's such a soft sensitive guy and he holds the traditionally female gender role in our relationship. I trusted him to react differently but obviously he and are are not on the same page...and probably haven't ever been.

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reyindium
59 minutes ago, Jani said:

I'm glad you enjoyed your appointment and I hope they all go well for you. 

 

As for your spouse, he is correct able women being able to wear whatever and no one caring.  But he obviously never saw beyond the outer shell of this, just accepting you for who you are and not looking deeper.   I could say not good, but we're all different in how we process things.  My spouse is certainly different than me.  

 

He may be throwing contradictions because he is confused and thats what we do when we are uncertain.  You've probably heard it a hundred times, spouses transition too, along side us in their own way.  

 

Keep the lines of communication open.

 

Jani  

I know he's probably got a metric ton of feelings about all this too. He's confused the hell out of me so perhaps you're right and he's equally lost. If it were just my clothes, I could understand why he never saw past them. But we've had both serious and casual conversations about my gender. It's like he never heard me once in the last 10 years. I thought he was on this journey with me. If he's blindsided, then so am I.

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MaryMary
Just now, reyindium said:

Thank you. If I recall correctly, you responded to a previous post of mine where I explained how hurt and betrayed I was by my spouse's superficial sense of love. You had a very similar response from your (ex) spouse. I'm really sorry. You and I both must have backstage passes to the same crapshow. I struggle with feeling guilty over my trans identity so if someone told me it was "all my fault", I'd be inclined to agree. You say you still struggle with all this...how long has it been for you if I might ask?  

 

 

It's been 5 years since we separated and we finished the divorce procedure this spring. Me and my ex we separated before it turned toxic so we are still very good friends.

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Jani
31 minutes ago, reyindium said:

I thought he was on this journey with me. If he's blindsided, then so am I.

I have been married for 44 years so I can attest to thinking at times that you're on the same wavelength when in fact you're are not.  Life and people are strange in that regard.   I think it may be time to have some serious dialogue about how he (and you) felt things have been going.  

 

Also, in my opinion women are more prone to accept this change in a partner than men are.  Women can be close friends with each other without seeming sexual, while men never want to get too close so to not project the image of homosexuality.      

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Dain

Hey Rey,

so sorry you're going through this with your spouse. It sounds like a rough time and I hope you guys pull through.

 

On 7/18/2019 at 2:22 AM, reyindium said:

He's such a soft sensitive guy and he holds the traditionally female gender role in our relationship. I trusted him to react differently but obviously he and are are not on the same page...and probably haven't ever been.

 

I'm sorry if make any wrong assumptions, but I'm wondering if maybe his reaction might also be strongly tied to how things will be more in the public eye when you transition. What I mean is, maybe he's fine holding the traditionally female gender role at home in a private space, where he feels safe? It might be touching on feelings of outing him to the world as something he's only comfortable expressing at home? (Does that make sense?) That said, all your emotions are valid regardless.

 

Change is a scary thing. It probably never hit him before, now it's getting very real and that means a lot of change on a social level, maybe? Even my partner who's bi/pan (and super supportive) first had a somewhat disagreeable reaction to the idea of me having top surgery when I brought it up half kidding.

 

Anyway, I hope I didn't step out of line here. I just thought of sharing my thoughts hoping it could help look at it from a different perspective.

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reyindium
On 7/21/2019 at 3:10 AM, Dain said:

Hey Rey,

so sorry you're going through this with your spouse. It sounds like a rough time and I hope you guys pull through.

 

 

I'm sorry if make any wrong assumptions, but I'm wondering if maybe his reaction might also be strongly tied to how things will be more in the public eye when you transition. What I mean is, maybe he's fine holding the traditionally female gender role at home in a private space, where he feels safe? It might be touching on feelings of outing him to the world as something he's only comfortable expressing at home? (Does that make sense?) That said, all your emotions are valid regardless.

 

Change is a scary thing. It probably never hit him before, now it's getting very real and that means a lot of change on a social level, maybe? Even my partner who's bi/pan (and super supportive) first had a somewhat disagreeable reaction to the idea of me having top surgery when I brought it up half kidding.

 

Anyway, I hope I didn't step out of line here. I just thought of sharing my thoughts hoping it could help look at it from a different perspective.

Not out of line at all! I posted to get anyone's thoughts and perspectives on our situation. And I believe you're right. Even if he isn't consciously aware of it, the social part probably plays a role. He tends not to give a crap what others think, but I don't know if he's wrapped his head fully around the fact that I intend to come out to my family and at work eventually, and that will have implications for him. I'm not rushing to share so we've got plenty of time to work through it all.

 

We ended up having another conversation since I originally posted, because I got really depressed and the metaphorical cloud over my head wasn't easy for anyone to ignore. Things have smoothed themselves out for the better between us since talking. Right now he's mostly stuck on the physical stuff I desire (hrt and surgery, neither of which I see myself doing, despite my wanting to). But he's been working on not misgendering me since our conversation which is a phenomenally positive change and is a part of our mutual compromise(s). Taking it one day at a time...and it's a relief that I don't feel out of place in my home anymore.

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