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lauraincolumbia

Finally going to see a gender therapist

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lauraincolumbia

Hi All.

After decades of seeing different therapists, and being in weekly therapy with a regular therapist, i'm finally being referred to see a gender therapist.   I'm so excited.  Hopefully,  they'll help me figure out where I fit.

Anyone have advice?

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Jackie C.

Congratulations!

 

Really the only advice I have is relax and be truthful. I've found my time with a gender therapist relaxing, comfortable and affirming. You've been in therapy before, so you know the basics. They don't really change.

 

Best of luck! Lean back and enjoy the experience!

 

Hugs!

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TammyAnne

Congratulations.

My experience was mind blowing: no more "we can't talk about that" games, more opening up and being myself - finding myself. As to deciding what you are, I see it now more as discovering who you are and making a place for yourself in the world. I'm still planning to transition towards a woman, but cannot say how far I will get, or even if I could ever pass. But I can find a path for myself through all this, with the help of a therapist who understands and the help of the wonderful people on this forum.

Once you become comfortable with yourself, wearing a label is less important. I hope. Because I still don't quite know what I am, either - aside from me and becoming happier with me.

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AnnaD

remember, they would have seen it all before, so anything you say is not stupid :)

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Dannie

Congrats I love going to my therapist she is my rock Just be truthful and you will figure out what is right for you

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DeeDee

I can only echo what others have said Laura - any therapist can only reflect on the information you give them, so be brutally blunt about your feelings and why you are there, and don't expect too much after your first session 🤗 I talked for over 2 hours and the only comment I got was an assurance that this was not a mental health issue and that they would support me as best as they could. I had to stop myself from hugging her as I left lol.

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Krisvm

I would say in the longer term try to be patient with yourself. One thing I have struggled with is that I want to keep moving faster and faster but some things do take a long time to work through.

Also try to take care of yourself afterwards. Therapy may not seem like it but often you are doing a lot of mental work so a bit of selfcare after can do you the world of good.

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lauraincolumbia

Thank you all for the wonderful experiences and information! I truly appreciate it!

I love this group!

 

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ShawnaLeigh

Well I had all this wonderful sage advice to give but these ladies beat me to it. LOL

I can say it has been a life altering experience for me.  Literally.  I feel so much better after seeing my gender therapist.  Like my life is on track finally and I am excited for my future even with all the drama I am experiencing with others.  I look forward to my days now.

Of course coming here too.  LOL

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lauraincolumbia

So unfortunately, my couples therapist pulled a bait and switch (or something like it), after weeks of promising to be setting up an appointment with a gender therapist, she came back with a printout of the DSM V regarding, Transvestic Disorder, even though there are so many signs that my "issues" aren't sexual in nature.  

I'm extremely disapointed.    I think it's time to dump her, give up on couples therapy, and search for a gender therapist on my own.

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Jackie C.

Oh, I'm so sorry. The one couples counselor I've seen (years ago, while I was still self-destructing) was a manipulator too. I see you drew the short straw as well. That's shameful for a counselor of ANY specialty and you should absolutely dump her and find somebody willing to actually help you. That sort of behavior is just unacceptable. Also leave her a poor review. Other people shouldn't have to suffer either.

 

Best of luck with your shiny new gender therapist. I've got no idea what the landscape where you are is like, but I found mine through the transgender program at UofM. If you have a local university, they might have something similar. They've been very helpful when I need to find resources.

 

Hugs!

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Charlize

I can only say that if you get a good gender therapist they will also wish to help you and yours as a counselor.  It sounds like your couples counselor has no idea of what she is about in your situation.  What a pity.

 

Hugs,

 

Charlize

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TammyAnne

Sadly I'm afraid it's human nature for 3 people to split into a pair (us) and an outcast (them). It seems to work like that at a very deep level.

Couples therapy for me, regardless of the therapist's gender, always turned into me being the isolated target.

My gender therapist has already suggested having some sessions including my female partner to help explain - and to get the wording right, if that makes sense.

If your gender therapist can help you and wants to explain things to your wife, it may be very useful in getting through the rough spots.

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ShawnaLeigh

 

1 hour ago, TammyAnne said:

My gender therapist has already suggested having some sessions including my female partner to help explain - and to get the wording right, if that makes sense.

 

I am sorry this has happened to you Tammy.  It goes to prove once again to me that you need to find a therapist specialized in the issues you are wanting to learn and correct or move on with.  This includes couples therapy.  Most couples do not have a transgender aspect to their marital/couples issues.  A gender therapist can help with this much better with a complete understanding of trans issues but they too may not be so good with couples.  

I was recommended a trans couples therapist for use in this matter sometime soon.  We have yet to do this as we really have no real issue between us other then her "line" she will not cross eventually.  Its my hope that with time and love and more education on transgender she will blur that line.

He has also offered to have my wife attend my sessions if she wants to.  To ask what she about wants to learn about or to get a better understanding of.  How to deal with certain things and to learn that what she feels is not wrong or bad.  Maybe slip some trans education in there too from a source other then me.  I told him to not have her attend to just sit there and watch him shrink my head.  LOL

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TammyAnne

"A source other than me..."

I think this is a key point. If we say it, our partners hear something entirely different coming out of our mouths: "you're not enough for me. You're a failure. I don't love you anymore. You're not enough (partner) for me, etc."

The therapist can be heard from a more detached place 

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ShawnaLeigh
1 hour ago, TammyAnne said:

"A source other than me..."

I think this is a key point. If we say it, our partners hear something entirely different coming out of our mouths: "you're not enough for me. You're a failure. I don't love you anymore. You're not enough (partner) for me, etc."

The therapist can be heard from a more detached place 

Well I'm not getting this feeling from my wife but more that she is "not a lesbian".  Once I am not a man anymore we will not be married.  Who knows what exactly this means to her?  Physically?  Mentally?  Both?

So maybe the "not enough for me" one.

But she definitely has told me she still loves me still.  That she understands what and why I am doing this and is supporting me in certains ways with my transition.  Though she did tell me last weekend, starting with a, "I don't mean this to hurt your feelings but..." Then she told me she is not as attracted to me the more feminine I get.  Which I can understand if she is attracted only to men.  Which she is adamant about.  

I too feel a gender therapist can explain all this better to them then we can.  For me, I am still learning a lot about myself and this community.  How am I suppose to explain it all to someone else?

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Jackie C.
1 hour ago, ShawnaLeigh said:

Well I'm not getting this feeling from my wife but more that she is "not a lesbian".  Once I am not a man anymore we will not be married.  Who knows what exactly this means to her?  Physically?  Mentally?  Both?

So maybe the "not enough for me" one.

But she definitely has told me she still loves me still.  That she understands what and why I am doing this and is supporting me in certains ways with my transition.  Though she did tell me last weekend, starting with a, "I don't mean this to hurt your feelings but..." Then she told me she is not as attracted to me the more feminine I get.  Which I can understand if she is attracted only to men.  Which she is adamant about.  

I too feel a gender therapist can explain all this better to them then we can.  For me, I am still learning a lot about myself and this community.  How am I suppose to explain it all to someone else?

 

Well you aren't a man in any way now except your physicality and some bits of your man-shell you haven't shed yet. You never really were. Of course she fell in love with the man-shell... man-armor? I like the image of hiding inside man-armor while dealing with the world. Man-suit? No, armor is better. We grow it to protect ourselves from the less tolerant parts of society. Kind of like a hairier version of Iron-Man. Only it's Man-Man. So in a way, she fell in love with a superhero, but doesn't feel quite the same way about the mild-mannered Shawna underneath the mask.

 

By the goddess, I am SUCH a geek. Where was I going with this...

 

Oh, right. I still think she protests too much. Sexuality doesn't work like that. It's vanishingly rare to find people that are only ever attracted to the opposite gender. Same with people that are only attracted to the same gender or equally attracted to both genders. It works more on a bell curve with the 0, 3 and 6 values being the outliers. Sorry about getting technical, but I find the science behind psychology absolutely fascinating.

 

So yeah, i get where she's coming from. I'm just sorry her bond with you isn't strong enough to get past her cultural bias. At the end of the day, we're all just people. People are allowed to love people. Once we're edging into middle age, well, very few of us are supermodels anymore. Not that I ever was, I was more "Clearance, 80% off."

 

Hugs!

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lauraincolumbia

Thank you all for your valuable insights! Love this group!

 

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