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Cian

My mom is a TERF and I don't know what to do

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Cian

I didn't come out for five years because I thought my mom was going to kick me out. Turned out that all that hiding was for nothing because she says she will love me no matter what. She's known for six months that I'm trans and isn't getting anymore used to it, I almost got on T a few times but cancelled because my therapist said I should give my mom more time. Now I have an appointment in three weeks to see an endocrinologist and when I called they said that unless theres some kind of major concern they usually write the prescription right then. 

 

I don't know how to tell her, I know it's not going to go well. I've been feeling pessimistic about HRT in general since my date has been moved back several times already and most of the trans people I know from high school are over 2 years on T and some have had top surgery. It feels like its never going to happen, like I'll either get rejected at the door or it'll do nothing. Like I'm throwing away my relationship with my mom for something that I'll never get. 

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Jackie C.

How does TERF apply? Usually they're just excluding us male-to-females because "we don't know the struggles of growing up as a woman." From my point of view, I'm investing a pile of time and money to experience the struggles first hand, but what do I know, right? I'm seriously asking here. I honestly thought TERFs were only against transitioning MtF.

 

So anyway, what have you done to get your mom used to the idea of her little girl actually being a little boy? Do you cut your hair? Bind? Wear masculine clothes? Speak in a lower register? (I'm so jealous on this one, I wish MtF hormones had the same effect as FtM on my voice.) This is all new to her, she might be having trouble wrapping her head around the whole idea. I had a similar conversation with my mother where she could accept trans-people in general (her words, not backed up by actions but that's a WHOLE other rant and I'll spare you) but could not accept that I was trans myself. We basically cut each other out of our lives in the end. I occasionally get snippets of news about her from (her) coworkers, but that's the end of our interactions.

 

So yeah, my point here is that sometimes family members simply will not accept you. It sucks, but you can't change someone else's mind unless they're willing to change. I'm guessing you depend on her for health care and financial help with your education? Unfortunately that means that unless you have another source of income and your own insurance you could be stuck. Your only real options there are to stick it out until you don't need her help or secure your own line of income.

 

I know how hard it is to have something just within your reach snatched away at the last minute. I'd probably try to talk to her about it. Maybe slowly at first, "Mom, what would you think about me going on HRT?" Be prepared. Have answers ready for her questions and counterarguments to her objections. Don't... and I know this one is going to be hard, I've been there... fight. Talk in a calm and rational manner. Let her get emotional if she wants, but you need to be the adult if she's not willing to. This is two adults talking about a medical issue, it's not about your parent/child relationship. So no fighting.

 

Otherwise, you need to hang in there. At worst you have another, what? Year or two before it's out of her hands entirely? You've got time. You held out this long, you can hold on a little longer.

 

That's probably good experience anyway, there are a LOT of pauses and gatekeepers in this process. You need to be ready to accept setbacks while still reaching for what you want. In the meantime, I wish you all the best.

 

Hugs!

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Jani

Hello Cian and welcome.  This is excellent commentary and advice from Jackie!  To echo one point, how do you actually know how she'll react unless you ask her, or even tell her?  Be forewarned that telling her may appear to be adversarial.  Only you know your Mom's anger level and what it takes to trigger it.  Thread carefully.

 

Jani  

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Dana Michelle
5 hours ago, Jackie C. said:

How does TERF apply? Usually they're just excluding us male-to-females because "we don't know the struggles of growing up as a woman." From my point of view, I'm investing a pile of time and money to experience the struggles first hand, but what do I know, right? I'm seriously asking here. I honestly thought TERFs were only against transitioning MtF.

 

 

Yes, there are TERFs with a problem with transgender men as well. Some TERFs consider trans men to be "traitors" and their thinking is they should fight for the right to things while still being female, instead of transitioning to gain male privilege. Gaining male privilege is not the motive for trans men to transition, but TERFs clearly don't understand transgender people.

 

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Cian

She identifies herself as a TERF and is pretty proud of it. Her issue is she thinks I just want male privilege, I've told her before that wanting male privilege is vastly different from wanting to be an actual man but she's told me she doesn't understand why not being a man makes me dysphoric. We've been talking about me going on HRT since shortly after I came out, and I've been binding whenever possible, wearing mens clothes, and using the mens room for around 2 1/2 years though I've only been able to bind openly in front of my mom recently because when I was in high school she would look at my chest and  grill me if she thought I was wearing a binder. The first time she caught me with mens underwear I was 15 and I buried them in the back yard out of fear. She's written me a list of her concerns about HRT and a lot of it is TERF propaganda she's too indoctrinated to see past (she thinks gender therapists are a part of a conspiracy to get money from trans people). We've had the conversation about me going on HRT several times and no matter how calm I am she gets angry, yells, then apologizes and says she isn't angry at me she's angry at the people who 'tricked' me. I don't think she's willing to change but I think the bulk of her animosity towards trans people is based in the fear that I'm being taken advantage of by the evil gender cult. My issue is telling her that I have a date set and that its not changing again no matter what she says. 

 

Also legally half the house and all of my fathers life insurance belongs to me since they hated each other and he didn't want to give her a cent. If -crap- really goes south and she tries to kick me out I'm prepared to sue.

 

I think you're right and all I can do is just get it over with and see what happens. I've already had quite a few setbacks given that my first appointment to start T was four months ago (which I cancelled at my therapists request) but I really really hope this is the last one. I called the place and they do informed consent so I don't need a letter and they said they write the prescription the same day as the blood test if there are no major concerns. I also asked the guy if they could show me how to do the injection that day so I don't have to go back and he said they could set aside some time after the appointment since its supposed to be quick. It sounds like they're just gonna let me do it but I've had to cancel so many times I feel like I can't let myself believe its actually happening

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ShawnaLeigh

Forgive my ignorance but what is TERF refer to.  I get the general idea but this is a new term for me.

 

I agree with my friend Jacky on what she had to say.  She is very wise...

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Jackie C.
13 hours ago, Dana Michelle said:

Yes, there are TERFs with a problem with transgender men as well. Some TERFs consider trans men to be "traitors" and their thinking is they should fight for the right to things while still being female, instead of transitioning to gain male privilege. Gaining male privilege is not the motive for trans men to transition, but TERFs clearly don't understand transgender people.

 

Thank you @Dana Michelle, that would never have occurred to me! I'm still grappling with the idea that people like that even exist. I learned the word from my therapist.

 

@Cian that's actually better. Could you sell your half and move to a smaller place or maybe find a less abrasive roommate? You really don't need what you're mother is saying in your life. If she's not willing to accept you, you can't force her. She can sit in her little corner "mourning her lost daughter" and never meet her bright, loving son. Unfortunately, sometime you have to cut family members loose. I'll welcome them back if they change their attitudes, but somehow they never do.

Props on weathering the storm though. Did she use, "I'm glad your grandparents aren't alive to see this folly?" It was eerie reading your account, I got almost the same thing from my egg donor when I came out. Propaganda, disproved articles, the works. I know its hard.

 

@ShawnaLeigh TERF stands for Trans-Exclusive Radical Feminist. So basically a certain kind of bigot. "Equal rights for everyone except the trans, they're icky." Sometimes it physically hurts me that people keep inventing new ways to exclude each other for no reason.

 

Hugs!

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ShawnaLeigh

Wow.  Not shocked but it feels, I dunno, scary I guess, to know there are people that hate you because you are you.

I knew I would be walking into a lot of this sort of stuff when I decided to not hide myself anylonger.  I need to educate myself and prepare for it sooner the later it seems..

 

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SaraAW

I recently found out my mother-in-law is rather TERFy. I don’t think she’s actively campaigning, but who knows. She was staying with my wife and I for a couple weeks last month. She went on 2 completely unprompted rants on trans women. The first I just let slide to keep the peace. The second one I lost it and confronted her on her bigotry and hate. She’s barely talked to my wife since she left. I feel bad, but it’s probably for the best as all she has ever done is upset my wife. She’s never treated my wife any level of respect and has been generally awful to her since she was born. My wife, bless her heart, refuses to give up on her mom. 
 

Cian, I hope your mom does come round. Love is a pretty powerful thing and one of the few things that can break through walls of misinformation and bigotry. 
 

*hugs*
 

Sara

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