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Krisvm

Relationship As Seen By Others

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Krisvm

This is more a rant than anything else but wanted to get it out. 

As I am appearing more feminine more regularly there is an issue that is starting to annoy me and upset my wife. When we are out and about strangers no longer see us a couple. 

 

Examples of this include:

- Going out to a restaurant on a date and when I offer to pay the waitress said "Isn't it so nice you are willing to pay for her."

- When we areb asked for both our names by service people they are visibly surprised we have the same surname. 

- My wife was upset and crying on a bench so I hug her and comfort her. Someone came up to me and said "I see your friend is upset, is there anything I can do to help?" 

 

Whilst we are not super PDA we still hold hands as we walk, hug and kiss occasionally and are affectionate to each other but doesn't seem to help in people's minds. It is rather frustrating. 

 

Has anyone else experienced this? 

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Jackie C.

Could be an English thing? People here are too stuck in their own business to pay Susan and I much attention, even if we're being gross in public. I was talking to an older (70's) Lebanese man the other day and his only reaction to me mentioning that, "No, my wife and I don't have kids," was to ask, "Do you love her?" I answered in the affirmative and we moved on with the conversation. Nobody's said a word (while I'm in earshot anyway) in restaurants.

 

I suppose it could be age related as well. Two middle-age lesbians probably attract less attention than we would if we were younger. That or they just assume that we're friends. Granted that would be friends that hold hands and kiss, but maybe we're just really, really good friends. In general though, I find the public to be pretty chill about the two of us.

 

Hugs!

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ShawnaLeigh

I’ve yet to go outside the house dressed feminine.  No less with my wife.  Sorry I have no real world experience to draw from.  
However I can tell you I would feel the same.  Almost.  
I suppose I would expect most folks to treat us that way.  It amazes me how few same sex couples are not recognized as such.  Unless there is blatant PDA and then most wont bat an eye.  At least in VT.  
I know for a fact that most don’t care here.  Some do and will remark but I personally have never heard anyone say anything homophobic in my presence.  
I suppose I would be happier to not be recognized as a couple period then to be ridiculed as a trans couple. Either way it’s not anyone’s business.  I understand people making mistakes too.  It happens.  Quite a few folks may of never dealt with a trans person or couple and not know what to say.  Or to nervous to make a mistake.  
I wouldn’t worry about it unless it’s consistent and obvious.  Jmo. 

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Carolyn Marie

My wife was really nervous about the very issues you raised, Kris.  She didn't start realizing how little people seemed to notice or care until we started being out and about more often.  I think her real concern was whether and how well I would pass.  The first time we sat down in a restaurant together and the waitress said, "How are you ladies doing today?" that really seemed to ease her mind. 

 

As we've traveled the U.S. and the world together, we mostly pass ourselves off as a couple, or sometimes as friends, and less often as married lesbians.  We also hold hands but rarely kiss in public.  What people think of us doesn't matter much any more, as long as they leave us be and don't stare.  The staring bothers both of us, but I've never confronted anyone over it and hope it never gets to the point where I feel the need.  We've been on motorcoach tours and cruises and never had a real problem.  Most people just don't seem bothered by us, and we go out of our way to be friendly with everyone.  That seems to really help. 

 

My wife wondered if we would be able to live out our lives the way we had always dreamed.  With very few exceptions we've been able to do exactly that.  With the advent of gay marriage in the U.S., its easier than it might have been otherwise.  I hope that can alleviate some of your and your wife's concerns and fears.  If you have more questions please feel free to PM me.

 

HUGS

 

Carolyn Marie

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Krisvm

Thank you all for what you have said. Is good to hear. 

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Charlize

I have certainly lived through this one.  My wife hated the idea of being seen as a lesbian but in time we have found it isn't an issue.  Folks seem to see us as friends and we certainly are just that!  Perhaps it is easier as an older couple.  There are certainly awkward times.  My descriptors vary from "my wife" to "my best friend".

 

Hugs,

 

Charlize

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ShawnaLeigh
51 minutes ago, Charlize said:

My wife hated the idea of being seen as a lesbian but in time we have found it isn't an issue.  Folks seem to see us as friends and we certainly are just that!  Perhaps it is easier as an older couple.  There are certainly awkward times.  My descriptors vary from "my wife" to "my best friend".

I am praying my wife gets to this point because this is exactly why she keeps telling me once I am presenting as female full time we go from "Married" to "Just Friends" in every sense of the word. 

She refuses to accept being called a lesbian or even being perceived as one.  She says she cannot picture us shopping "as friends" being married.  It would have to be as friends and nothing more.  She does not want a women or a wife.  Though she says she does not want another husband either.  That she is done with it all.

(OMG I ruined her)

Seriously though, this alone puts me off because not only is she not "really" accepting of me, doesn't love "me" enough to try and make it work, but now my community too.  Where else will it lead?  I will eventually make LBGT friends locally too.  Will that be an issue for her? I don't know but I can not change her mind for her.  Just be patient and see how it develops.

 

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Jani
9 hours ago, Carolyn Marie said:

My wife was really nervous about the very issues you raised, Kris.  She didn't start realizing how little people seemed to notice or care until we started being out and about more often.

This is my experience as well.  We have always been greeted in restaurants and such as two women.  Maybe if we were two guys it would be different, but...   My wife totally avoids as PDA and I understand but it seems like it's not a big deal.  When I've been out with my sister or mother, we hug and kiss when we part and think nothing of it.  

 

As you age and mature in a relationship, a deep friendship is what you strive for IMO.  Yes we know we are a couple but  no one else seems to see this and its all right.  

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tracy_j

This was perhaps the main thing my partner worried about, and still possibly does at times. I am not sure whether she has come across anything but I have been openly suggested as lesbian once. I used to worry more about her as I remember us being referred to as 'two ladies', which is something she finds hard to accept. On a good point though she was far less troubled when her son (my stepson) came out as gay as she said it was not openly obvious to everyone like I was. At least he had fewer issues.

 

Tracy

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ShawnaLeigh

I can only imagine what a ciswomen that has married a man she loves, till death do you part, will feel about staying with a trans women in a marriage.
Actually I can not imagine it as I have tried.  She asked me how I would feel if I were not trans,”just a regular guy” and she came to me saying she was trans.  Would I be ok with that??  A natural first reaction would be no.  But it’s hard to try and place myself in that scenario   being who I am.  I don’t know what a cis male would feel.  But I would think love transcends all.  
I personally would be ok with it as I love the person she is and would do so just as much the person he would become.  
Im very open minded and really don’t care what others think but not everyone is.  

This is my biggest snag with me understand and being accepting to my wife’s views and feeling now.  She says she loves me and she does support and help me.  She claims she even understands. Though for me the jury is out on that still.   Our life together has been really good.  Even after I came out and we got past the shock of it.  She continues to say she will not stay married to me once I am transitioned.  It seems like a hypocrite way to think on her part.  Like she only love the male me.  Which is not who I am inside.  Or have ever been really regardless of how well I played the role.  

Apparently love does not transcend all.  Just some.  
 

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Jackie C.
1 hour ago, ShawnaLeigh said:

I can only imagine what a ciswomen that has married a man she loves, till death do you part, will feel about staying with a trans women in a marriage.
Actually I can not imagine it as I have tried.  She asked me how I would feel if I were not trans,”just a regular guy” and she came to me saying she was trans.  Would I be ok with that??  A natural first reaction would be no.  But it’s hard to try and place myself in that scenario   being who I am.  I don’t know what a cis male would feel.  But I would think love transcends all.  
I personally would be ok with it as I love the person she is and would do so just as much the person he would become.  
Im very open minded and really don’t care what others think but not everyone is.  

This is my biggest snag with me understand and being accepting to my wife’s views and feeling now.  She says she loves me and she does support and help me.  She claims she even understands. Though for me the jury is out on that still.   Our life together has been really good.  Even after I came out and we got past the shock of it.  She continues to say she will not stay married to me once I am transitioned.  It seems like a hypocrite way to think on her part.  Like she only love the male me.  Which is not who I am inside.  Or have ever been really regardless of how well I played the role.  

Apparently love does not transcend all.  Just some.  
 

 

No, I can put myself in those shoes. They're uncomfortable, but I can see how it would unfold. I'd be hurt at first, because my wife would be leaving me. I'm gynosexual, meaning I'm attracted to people who present as female. Facial and body hair make me physically ill and I don't like the way men smell. At all.

However, I love her and would like to keep her in my life. I think we could still be friends, but there would be hurt on her side... I guess his side... too because I wouldn't be able to continue the physical side of our relationship. There would be a slow ... well, not THAT slow, testosterone works faster than estrogen ... tearing apart as the HRT swept my wife away from me and replaced her with a guy. Again, a guy who could be my best friend, but he couldn't be my lover anymore. We'd probably try a couple of times to see if we could re-ignite the spark. We might even manage to make it work for a while, but eventually we'd drift apart because we needed different things from our lovers to be happy.

I'd support his decision every step of the way though. I want him to be happy. I'd just be sad that we couldn't be happy together anymore. And now I'm crying.

 

So yeah, that's probably pretty close to how it would go down if Susan came out as a trans-man. I'd support him every step of the way and love him as much as I could, but there are some things that a man, even a man who I love, can't give me in a relationship. I don't think I could have the same sense of connection once the T had done its work.

 

Just my two cents. I realize that it's hypocritical to say, "Yeah, I probably couldn't do it," when my wife has been so accepting, but unfortunately, that's the way I feel. I'm not always a great person. There'd be some hope (I mean I'm about a 4 on the Kinsey Scale, so it's not out of the question), but odds are pretty good that I just wouldn't be attracted to him sexually any more. At the end of the day, I like breasts.

 

Hugs!

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KymmieL

While I have gone out dressed. I have yet to with my wife. Don't think she would anyway. While I do know that when I decided to go full time she will be getting the papers ready. She has said she wouldn't hold my hand if we where out together when I was dressed in fem. I think we would stay friends, but I couldn't live in the same town as her and not be with her. My love for her is that deep.

 

Maybe that is why I will be moving when I come out full time as a woman.

 

Kymmie

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Jackie C.

That makes me sad Kymmie. People can't help how they feel, but it's hard to be abandoned by a loved one like that for just being more honest about who you are. I hope she changes her mind as she sees that you're not going to turn into some kind of monster.

 

Hugs!

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ShawnaLeigh
59 minutes ago, KymmieL said:

While I have gone out dressed. I have yet to with my wife. Don't think she would anyway. While I do know that when I decided to go full time she will be getting the papers ready. She has said she wouldn't hold my hand if we where out together when I was dressed in fem. I think we would stay friends, but I couldn't live in the same town as her and not be with her. My love for her is that deep.

 

Maybe that is why I will be moving when I come out full time as a woman.

 

Kymmie

As you know sweetie I am right in the same boat rowing in circles.  My wife has basically told me the same things.  I don’t blame her for her feelings but that doesn’t make it easier either.  I don’t think I will need to leave my state but I agree I would not do well seeing her with someone else. 
I sincerely hope we stay friends at least.  Those are in short supply for me.  

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KathyLauren

My wife and I enjoy going out together.  No one thinks anything of it, and we don't get stared at.  The only time the question of whether or not we are a couple comes up is when we are asked if we want one bill or two.

 

My wife was a bit weirded out about being a lesbian through no choice of her own.  She considers herself a "lesbian by marriage".  But she has no reservations about us remaining a couple.  As far as she is concerned, my transition is part of the "for better or for worse" that she signed up for.  I am not sure I could have done the same had the positions been reversed, so I consider myself very lucky.

 

My wife likes to be bratty.  Sometimes when we are walking down the street and she spots someone looking disapprovingly at us, she will hold my hand, just to give them something to stare at.

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Kendal01

Hi, I am new to the forum and not sure if this is the best place to post this I have a question.

I am married and currently transitioning, with surgery scheduled in a month. My wife, so far is staying but is not a lesbian and says she will not call me her wife or partner nor her husband. Anyone else in this circumstance? If so what is your spouse going to call you.

 

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VickySGV
3 hours ago, Kendal01 said:

If so what is your spouse going to call you.

 

Hopefully by your name and titles you prefer.  My Ex and I had been divorced for years for other reasons but were co-parents for our children (now in their 40's) and interact with each other regularly.  We simply say we are related through the children and use first names and if really necessary, say "extended family member" which is as much as anyone else needs to know.

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Jackie C.

Hey @Kendal01! I'm having surgery next week. Susan calls me her spouse or a pet name most of the time. She's pretty good with pronouns and only slips up once and a while. Really, I couldn't ask for a better partner. She's decided she's OK with being "straight plus me."

 

Hugs!

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ShawnaLeigh
12 hours ago, Kendal01 said:

Hi, I am new to the forum and not sure if this is the best place to post this I have a question.

I am married and currently transitioning, with surgery scheduled in a month. My wife, so far is staying but is not a lesbian and says she will not call me her wife or partner nor her husband. Anyone else in this circumstance? If so what is your spouse going to call you.

 

First.  Welcome to TP.  I am glad you are here!

I am currently transitioning and have had this same conversation with my wife just last weekend.  She says she is not going to use my new name nor the pronouns until I am fully presenting female and we are in divorce proceedings.  (Its a long story)

Its an attempt to keep "her side" of everyone uninformed of us or my transition as long as possible.  She does not plan to tell anyone yet or as little as possible even after we divorce.  Since I have very little contact with anyone she works with or her side of the family then I am ok with this.  To a point.

Other then this little sticky point she has been very supportive of me in the privacy of our home, with all my side of the family and friends and accepting that this is something I need to do to be healthy and happy.  She is even helping me with a lot of this and buying several things to wear or use as a women.  

Afterwards she will call me by my new name and I suppose refer to me as her Ex.  

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Susan R
On 1/28/2020 at 7:39 PM, Kendal01 said:

she will not call me her wife or partner nor her husband. Anyone else in this circumstance? If so what is your spouse going to call you.

Welcome to our community, Kendal.  Congrats also on you upcoming surgery.

 

What I wasn’t clear about in your post was whether or not your spouse referred to you as simply her “spouse”.  Will she convey any importance of relationship or some marital connection in a similar way as “partner, wife, or husband” would?  It is possible she may not yet be comfortable conveying your relationship to others at any level.

 

Right after going full time, I knew my wife was a bit hestitant the first few times as she introduced me to someone as her spouse.  She got over it fast.  I realize it was a huge paradigm shift for her.


My wife refers to me as “spouse” or “wife” and it seems to be pretty effortless for her now.  She knows it outs us immediately as lesbian and/or me as trans.  We are fine with both and both are accurate, so why not?  On very rare occasions when referring to a past event or memory, my wife may use my dead name only for clarification.  I’ve never corrected her when she does this because it was, after all, my name at that time.  In public she refers to me as just Susan and other times she will add the connection but saying “my spouse, Susan”.

 

Susan R🌷

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Kendal01

Thanks so much everyone for your quick responses.   I think she is uncomfortable, conveying a relationship as it would peg her as  a lesbian, which she is very opposed to. To me the relationship is important, but i]I understand her side.  In an attempt I said how about "former husband" and it almost rang home (to me it was better than ex.)  but still looking for a better word than "former".  

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Jackie C.

I'm not sure that calling it anything besides "your relationship," is important. People get too hung up on labels. Every relationship is different and we don't really need a complete taxonomy to describe everything from heterosexual cis relationship to genderqueer squidsexual. "Spouse" is fine. "Partner" is good if she doesn't want to assign a gender to it and be a little ambiguous about what you are to each other.

 

Give it some time. She probably needs to get used to it in her head. So long as the relationship continues, she'll settle into calling you something that makes you both comfortable.

 

Hugs! 

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