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LittleRed

Not sure what to do, just need some encouragement.

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LittleRed

Sorry this is long but I appreciate whoever takes the time to read. I'm 35 years old and married with six children. I figured out that I am really a woman about a year ago and have been trying to figure out what to do with my life. Eight months ago, my therapist gave me an official diagnosis of gender dysphoria based on my past and current experiences. In January, she offered to write a letter so I can take it to an endocrinologist to start HRT. 

 

At that time, it hit me hard that I have some choices to make. I got a lot of anxiety over the thought of changing my body and starting the process of transitioning. Currently I'm not public about who I am and live mostly male. I'm dealing with dysphoria on a day to day basis, which seems to come more and more out of the woodwork in many different and interesting ways and is not going away. 

 

I'm still working with my therapist and she is doing a lot to help me but she has basically told me that most of her patients who try to avoid transitioning ultimately come back to her within a year or two in a desperate condition asking for letters to start HRT. This felt completely hopeless to hear. 

 

Gender dysphoria to me is like a car that is stuck in drive and only goes forward (no reverse and no ability to turn the wheel). I can choose to keep my foot off the gas but it keeps creeping forward. When I allow myself to be who I am as a woman, it feels like I'm putting my foot on the accelerator and my car moves closer and closer to what I fear is a destination where I will be forced to transition in order to function in life.

 

Embracing my femininity and wearing feminine clothes is like taking drugs (I don't do drugs so I don't really know). But when I do, my female mind pulls me deeper into a longing desire to be a woman and to transition. It actually scares me so I try not to dress too much. But if I go too long without being in women's clothes, I get very depressed and out of balance - I start to feel like a robot who does nothing but eat, sleep, work, and produce with no enjoyment out of life.

 

I really want to avoid transitioning and I don't want the consequences of social changes to my life, lose friends, be pushed out of my church, deal with family (or lose family), live as a woman in a world where heated feelings against trans people are getting worse by the day, etc. But at the same time, I do want a feminine body, I want long beautiful hair. I want to have babies (although not possible - just a desire), I want to wear pretty dresses and be seen as a woman - as me. I want to transition and I don't.

 

I didn't ask to be this way and if I could, I'd snap my fingers and get this fixed - I'd either be a cis male or a cis female. I've obsessively spent hours over the past year (and still find myself doing this even a few days ago) on the internet looking for ways to fix this about myself, knowing that there is no other answer to coping with dysphoria than to transition. It feels completely hopeless.

 

I've had a lot of suicidal tendencies over the span of my life. Attempted a few times as a teenager while I was dealing with depression and family issues. Honestly I've had thoughts over the past 12 months (even in the past weeks) of suicide but have not acted on it. My wife, who is 100% supportive of a transition and wants to stay married to me, is really concerned for me. I just don't know what to do other than to derail my life and transition, which feels like a way to punish one's self while trying to avoid mental torchere.

 

Today I'm having a good day, but mainly because the past few days, I've been enjoying much of it as a woman. I'm sensing that I'm starting to come out of euphoria and into depression. I'm scared of crashing into depression because of all these thoughts and feelings on transitioning and how they flood my mind and consume so much of my head space. 

 

Dysphoria clouds my mind and I start an endless war of "should I" or "shouldn't I" along with feelings / longing to be a woman and thinking about all my fears of how my life will flip completely upside down the day I decide to go public as Jennifer. This usually starts in the morning and by the time I'm done for the day, I'm completely mentally exhausted. This is really hard and it won't quit.

 

I'm just looking for encouragement and hoping people have felt some of these same things.

 

Jennifer

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VickySGV
Just now, LittleRed said:

Embracing my femininity and wearing feminine clothes is like taking drugs

 

As a drug and alcohol addict who is less than two months away from an 11 year anniversary, I am going to throw a looper at you.  It is  not like taking drugs to kill the pain of living and numb you from experiencing life and shield you from a goal you need to meet.  They do not put you in danger of "taking someone with you to hell" as we talk about at recovery meetings where we may have been close to killing another person.  They can be drugs in the sense of Insulin, or even drugs that protect and prolong the lives of HIV/AIDS patients, or Antibiotics that cure pneumonia or vaccines that prevent Polio.  In that sense, those actions become lifesaving medications and HRT has a good possibility of acting on you that way.  If HRT is not going to help, you will know it before it does harm if you stay in touch with your medical care team.  They are patrol mates who can help you finish the GD ticket if you let them.

For me, I was taking HRT for two + years before I did more than once or twice a month of CDing and the meds did help me collect my mind and gave me enough peace that I could and did plan a transition that avoided some of my worst fears.  That is not to say there were no challenges because there were.  Some funny incidents did happen before I went full time which like sobriety helps me, gave me a deeper understanding of the humor.  The peacefulness that I developed helped me meet the challenges before I began my path to full transition. 

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MaryMary
51 minutes ago, LittleRed said:

 

Embracing my femininity and wearing feminine clothes is like taking drugs (I don't do drugs so I don't really know). But when I do, my female mind pulls me deeper into a longing desire to be a woman and to transition. It actually scares me so I try not to dress too much. But if I go too long without being in women's clothes, I get very depressed and out of balance - I start to feel like a robot who does nothing but eat, sleep, work, and produce with no enjoyment out of life.

 

Jennifer

 

someone one day said something to me, a very interesting comparison. In fact, it was someone here. I love love love all the (sometimes lowkey) wisdom here. I don't remember the exact wording but they said that what you are describing in the quote is like being a racing dog and being in the box before the race. You are (maybe) ignorant of your instincts before the rabbit start. But when you listen to yourself, to your instincts, and just be authentic then you are like the racing dog when the rabbit start. It's very hard to stop such a basic part of ourselves. I think we all felt what you describe. It's like we are the racing dogs trapped in a room with someone who never let us exercise. It's not a good idea and it leads to all sorts of health problems for the dog.

 

I was the racing dog trapped in a room before. I was just a normal hetero guy with a wife, two kids and a perfect job. It was all a role and inside I was feeling sooooo empty, like I had a big black hole inside. When I decided I had enough and when I decided to take my destiny in my own hand (so to speak) I started with little things. You know, if  force me to take part in an organized sport I'm like a fish out of water. I'm not competitive, like... 0, I'm a more collaborative type, I just want to help people. I never understood virility... like one bit. But when I started transition I discovered fashion and makeup and all this stuff. I love that. I listen to all sorts of youtube channel. I'm not an expert yet but I think I have my own style and I'm like the race dog that was able to run. I'm the grayhound that loves to run. And god I'm good at running, lol

 

To me, it's not a drug at all. I understand your intention and your comparison. But to me a good comparison is instinct. It's an instinct. And it's very hard to not listen to that, to not be authentic and just play a role. The no1 thing that transition is (to me) is to follow your instinct and be yourself.

 

maybe I'm wrong but I just wanted to share that.

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LittleRed

Vicky / Mary,

 

I appreciate the thoughts on the "like a drug" comparison. I think it's a little more clear. 

I guess I would say that when wear women's clothing, my wig, do my makeup, etc... I feel so at peace and free spirited and happy. When it comes time to go back to dressing like a guy, it's like turning the lights off. I feel emptiness. Yesterday, I really struggled to get back into guy mode and it was especially difficult to take off my earrings for some reason.

 

It just feels like I have an increasing dependency, which is why I related it to "like a drug".

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Janae

Jennifer

 

You are not alone!  We share the same feelings and emotions you note above. I am a few years your senior, and proof that you really can make it.  Firstly, acknowledging that we are transgender is a big step.  Knowing that I am a women, (that just happens to have male body parts), and embracing my feminine self has really helped me. I do have days where the dysphoria hits hard, and those can be difficult days, but just knowing I am not alone and that there is nothing wrong with me being a women provides comfort. Thanks to you and everyone on this forum, I am no longer ashamed to feel feminine. Fully transitioning physically would be tough for me and my family, and with my phobia to doctors and needles it just won’t happen.  However on the psychological side of things, I try hard to be more feminine than masculine. I am a better person when my feminine side comes out.  

Try not to think far down the road, but take things a day at a time.  You have a lot to live for, and know that you are loved as a person no matter who you are.

 

...and if your feeling down, doing a little shopping always helps me.  I was kind of down yesterday, and a new skirt picked me right up today!  😊

 

Hugs, and lots of love ❤️ 

 

 Janae

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LittleRed

Thank you Janae... Shopping does help! 🙂

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VickySGV
1 hour ago, LittleRed said:

When it comes time to go back to dressing like a guy, it's like turning the lights off.

 

Going back to the"guy mode" is actually going back to a stage role of the longest running show on Broadway and it has gotten old and you want to burn down that particular theater just to get rid of the role.  That magic lamp no longer fits your true self now that you have your real self out in the open even to the limited degree you do.  That is a better description of what is happening. It is not the hair and the clothing alone though that does it, but they help.  R <my old self> was an OK person but he was afraid to be the best parts of me which are a gentler and more smiling person, who is very open to hugs and listening to a person's inner self and letting then know I care about them.  If R had done that He/I would probably still be behind bars since from "him" much of it would have been threatening and construed as something creepy or perverted.  It feels so good to not have to hide that.  You will do fine and you are making good things happen,

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Jani

Jennifer I see there is lots of good commentary here.  The analogy of the racing dog is excellent.  Maybe a little "exercise" every now and then is what you need to get to an even ground.  As you say, your wife is behind you 100%.  This is a good point as it does free up some head space worrying about your family relationship.  That said, there are many situations where people have lived without outwardly transitioning, for many good reasons including ones you listed.  It is understandable that you don't want to jeopardize your family life style and career opportunities.  

 

As to HRT, a very low dosage will calm the stress you are feeling and may (only) give the slightest physical changes that would not necessarily be noticeable by those unknowing of your situation.  I know of a woman who has lived over ten years this way.  (supportive spouse, great job, etc.)  You could pursue hair removal, taking your time as it is a long process anyway.  Lots of reasons available if asked...  I had long hair for years, even as a manager in a major corporation.  Its all in what people get used to seeing in you.  Living as Jennifer on nights and weekends as the mode strikes is certainly more desirable than being miserable.  

 

2 hours ago, LittleRed said:

I guess I would say that when I wear women's clothing, my wig, do my makeup, etc... I feel so at peace and free spirited and happy. When it comes time to go back to dressing like a guy, it's like turning the lights off. I feel emptiness.

I can totally relate to this.  As you have seen this is an all consuming feeling we get.  Its not worth fighting; work with it.  Do what you need to be happy.  I knew I needed to do something, anything as I was miserable.  It was hurting my wife and she had no clue why.  I am sure your wife is worried about you as these feelings are not easy to hide.  As for me, I remember once I normalized my life by admitting I needed to change that everything came into focus and I was able to make clear headed choices.  I did not start HRT right away and even then it was low and slow.  I wanted to "race" but knew this would not be a good way to be.  

 

You speak of the day you go public.  When and if this day comes you may be surprised how much of a non-event it is for many people you know.  Don't stress over this now.  It is in the distance.  Focus your attention on you!  On getting better, on getting happy again.   Life is to short to be miserable, plus you've got quite a brood there to love and cherish.  Be the best you, whether that is "J", Jennifer, or a combination of the both.   For me I am a combination.  I've just filed away all the negative attributes of that old guy and kept the good ones.    

 

Please know that you are not alone in your thoughts.  We will certainly encourage you and support you however we can.  Listen to your therapist.  Take solace in that there are people that care about you.

 

Hugs, Jani

 

 

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LittleRed
2 hours ago, Jani said:

As to HRT, a very low dosage will calm the stress you are feeling and may (only) give the slightest physical changes that would not necessarily be noticeable by those unknowing of your situation.  I know of a woman who has lived over ten years this way.  (supportive spouse, great job, etc.)  You could pursue hair removal, taking your time as it is a long process anyway.  Lots of reasons available if asked...  I had long hair for years, even as a manager in a major corporation.  Its all in what people get used to seeing in you.  Living as Jennifer on nights and weekends as the mode strikes is certainly more desirable than being miserable.  

 

Jani, this seems like some good advice to look into. I've been growing my hair out since I came out to myself a year ago. It's not very long but back in November of last year, I convinced my dermatologist to put me on a low dose of finisteride in order to combat my hair from thinning and I started taking biotin. My hair growth and some restoration has been very satisfying in the past weeks looking in the mirror. This helps a lot.

 

I like the hair removal idea and I think I'll look into the low HRT dose option.

 

Somehow I need to get to a point of inner peace with this and get my mind to calm down. There is a war within myself and it hurts.

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Timber Wolf

Hi Jennifer,

It's terrifying when we accept that we're trans. The fear of the changes it entailes seem insermountable. I'm glad you are working with a therapist. I'm glad you've come here. This is not something you want to deal with alone. Before I came here, I was having suicidal thoughts. The caring encouragement I've found here, and being part of this community has given me the courage to move forward on this path, courage to do what I never thought I could. I know the feeling of peace you feel when dressed as we are our true selves. As far as physically transitioning our bodies goes, that's something you and your therapist can work on. But as you make slow changes in your life, try to focus on your progress more. It can help you feel like you're on your way toward the life you desire, with or without physically transitioning. That has helped me a lot. Take it slow, we don't need to do this overnight. And remember, you are not alone anymore. Together we can get over so many hurtles of fear that we never thought we could. And you know what? Those thoughts of suicide I was having are gone. Although I do wish I was cis gender, I've become much more comfortable in being trans. It does get better.

 

Lots of love and a big hug,

Timber Wolf 🐾

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Jani
5 hours ago, LittleRed said:

Somehow I need to get to a point of inner peace with this and get my mind to calm down. There is a war within myself and it hurts.

I know.  You'll find your balance point and all this worry will be behind you.  

 

Your hair plan sounds great!.

 

Hugs, Jani

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LittleRed

So there is the other worry. I have read (not sure the legitimacy of these claims) that the suicide rate for trans folk like us doesn't really improve much after transition. Any thoughts on this?

 

I just fear the cage I'm in will be life long and pointless. But at the same time, I've read many stories of trans people feeling so much better post transition. Struggle to know what to think on this.

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VickySGV
30 minutes ago, LittleRed said:

So there is the other worry. I have read ... that the suicide rate for trans folk like us doesn't really improve much after transition. Any thoughts on this?

 

Several recent studies of children and adults show that Trans people who live in an accepting and inclusive environment go from 41% down to 4% suicidality rate. <Thinking about or acting on suicide.> Normal rate for Cis people is 4.6%.  You say your spouse is supportive and accepting and there are therefor excellent chances you kids will be as well.  As for families beyond the core family, I do not know for you, but I have a chosen family of Trans and Enby people who do perform as the best part of a family for me.  My kids in two of there are openly accepting and while #3 is grudgingly accepting for the most part she has figured that her best way to stay in my will is to fake real acceptance. LOL. 

 

30 minutes ago, LittleRed said:

I've read many stories of trans people feeling so much better post transition.

 

You are talking to me and about me there.  I know I am me and I look at what I have now vs then and I am part of a larger community who is fighting like hell to keep it good for ourselves and others.

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Jani
47 minutes ago, LittleRed said:

the suicide rate for trans folk like us doesn't really improve much after transition. Any thoughts on this?

Why would I do anything rash.  I'm happier than I've ever been it seems.  I never want this dream to end! 

 

48 minutes ago, LittleRed said:

I've read many stories of trans people feeling so much better post transition. Struggle to know what to think on this.

Just like Vicky, this is me!  I am so happy.  While I wished and hoped I didn't think I could assimilate into a female life the way I have.  And I try to give back as much as I can.  There is so much untapped potential in our community for peace, love and understanding.  Three things the world needs now more than ever.  

 

I can see you're coming around and feeling a bit better now that we've all shared.  

 

Hugs, Jani

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LittleRed
3 hours ago, Jani said:

I can see you're coming around and feeling a bit better now that we've all shared.  

 

 

I am feeling a bit better, Jani. I appreciate you and others in this thread for the support. This is a great community of loving people for sure. Everytime I post something here, I start to feel more normal as people seem to experience similar things. I really need normalcy in my life right now!

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Charlize

I have loved reading this thread.  Some much love and wisdom!  Maybe that's what is not normal.  That made me think about that word:  "Normal".  It is a setting on my washing machine. As others have said I'm happy now that i'm just me not trying to be something that society says is "normal".   It took time,  I was 63 when i went full time.

 Do not despair.  I don't not even think about suicide now but years ago, hiding in lies, fear and shame oblivion of almost any type seemed my only path. Then a miracle happened when i found  sobriety and later this site.  One of the mods here said "we've got you back".  I wasn't alone and i saw others who managed to find a path to themselves in a "normal" world.

 

Hugs,

 

Charlize 

 

 

 

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Kirsten

Hey Red, I felt a lot of what you had talked about in your original post. All I can say is that no matter what I did, that feeling never went away for long. Sure I masked it well with everything from hobbies to my career, and even marriage and kids. But it always came back. And the only thing that made me feel like a human being was being dressed. But even that was withering away as well. Eventually I realized you can only fool yourself for so long. 

 

Hormones and hrt has its own issues. I started off thinking low dose was exactly what could work for me too. But for me that lasted about a week. Once the E and T blockers were in me I knew it was right. And I shifted to full transition. So be aware once this stuff is in you, you may feel much different. 

 

As far as the suicide part, I have definitely still thought about it. Because believe me when I say this isn’t easy. There were a lot of losses for me. Family and most of my friends are all gone. But I have plenty of friends still. Some are amazing. Some came out of nowhere. And the few that stuck around I care for so very much for now. But it’s still hard. And every day I wish I wasn’t trans. But I can’t be anyone but me. And I am trans. So I have no choice but to live my life for me. And so far...... it’s definitely better than before. 

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Janae

Sara

 

My wife had pretty much the same reaction when I came out.  I had been cross dressing for years and she new about it. What caught me off guard was when she brought up lying. I didn’t think I was a lier, so right away I was on the defense. I mean, here I was bearing my inner self, and how I feel at my best when I am fully dressed and being me. -(and as Kirsten mentioned, I tried to suppress that feeling and the euphoria that comes with it, by doing other things, but it always comes back.)   

How could I be lying?  But for her, she could not get how I could have gone this long living a lie. She kept asking how far I planned to go with this, and when I said I didn’t know (actually I did know) then she rightfully caught me in a lie. It has been months now since we first talked. She has been very supportive and wants me to be happy. But I respect that seeing me dressed around the house doing chores or eating lunch, is something that takes time to get used to. So I try to get her gradually used to seeing me as a woman.

When I reflect on this, our spouses know us a lot better than we give then credit for.  

The best advice I can give is to take it slow. Don’t rush things and take it slow. 

 

Hugs

 

Janae

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Janae

Uggg.   Are you ever reading various posts, and then go to reply, but then reply to the wrong one.  opps  🥵sorry about that.

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LittleRed
14 minutes ago, Janae said:

Uggg.   Are you ever reading various posts, and then go to reply, but then reply to the wrong one.  opps  🥵sorry about that.

 

No worries 🙂

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AnnaD

im not sure about alot of this, as im way too young to understand it, but we're all here for you. i think having an accepting wife should help alot, and wether or not you transition, good luck 👍

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Jani
6 hours ago, AnnaD said:

...as im way too young to understand it, but we're all here for you.

 

@Anna we don't always understand.  But you are demonstrating all that matters, understanding.  

 

@LittleRed  Jennifer I hope things are getting better every day. 

 

Jani

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