Jump to content
  • Welcome to the TransPulse Forums!

    We offer a safe, inclusive community for transgender and gender non-conforming folks, as well as their loved ones, to find support and information.  Join today!

Confused but my brain needs a label

Recommended Posts

Hey all,


I know I'll probably get a lot of comments to talk to a gender therapist, but I still feel kinda lost and would like to have a better idea how to categorize myself first.  My brain just works that way.  So I hope some of you might be able to help narrow down my search.


My intro post has some of this info but here goes...  I was AMAB, though from my teens I wondered if I could have been intersex and my parents hid it from me, though i had no legit basis for that thought.  I never felt like one of the boys, but I chalked it up to just being smaller framed and less athletic.  I'd sneak trying on my sisters clothes, I was envious as much as I was attracted to girls for their physical characteristics.  I was always meh to disliking of my own.  Then and now I still fantasize about having been born a girl.  If there was a magic button I could push that would instantly make me a female version of myself with everything else staying the same, I'd push it in about .7 seconds.  I'd say i was mtf trans if it was that simple.


But since no magic button, I don't think I'd want to go though transitioning all the way either, even if family or work acceptance or marriage status wasn't factored in.  While I have certain male features I don't like and would change if I could, I don't have an urgent desire to not be addressed as a male because of how I look.  I don't feel like I would fit inside completely with a female body on the outside.  But I definitely desire certain feminine characteristics not all of which are physical...  Aghh.  Never tried putting this in writing before.  Maybe I am not even asking myself the right questions?  I'll try and add more after some time to collect my jumbled thoughts, was just trying to get something out there...

Link to post
  • Forum Moderator
Jackie C.

OK, first point is that we're all different. There is no "trans-female checklist" either. We all have our own experiences and path to follow. You may never find a label that fits perfectly. That's OK. The only label that really matters is YOU.


Secondly, yes, find a gender therapist. They're very helpful. You might also find You and Your Gender Identity: A Guide to Discovery useful. My therapist recommended it to me.


Thirdly, because I forgot last time, Welcome to TransPulse! I hope you find what you're looking for here!


Fourthly, yeah, the magic button is a pretty strong sign. Even so, don't feel like there's One True Path (tm) to being trans. Lots of girls don't transition at all, are part-time or only have a couple procedures done. There are girls on here on mild doses of HRT, feminizing regimens or nothing at all. You need to figure out what makes you happy then add it to your life. You live in a magical world where you can buy prosthetics to cover up any oversight Mother Nature might have had.


Fifthly... and goodness that word sounds weird in my mouth... don't let social pressure keep you from being happy. By all means be safe, but being miserable your whole life isn't a good option either. Sometimes we lose a loved one or two along the way. Sometimes we don't. You need to take care of yourself. It isn't fair to your partner to keep part of yourself tucked away. You owe them, and you, your whole authentic self. Whatever that may turn out to be.



Link to post

Appreciate the thoughtful response, Jackie!  Thanks for the welcome, everyone has been very understanding/helpful/nice.  I've been reading a lot and trying to honestly examine my thoughts, what is actual dysphoria vs just envy/physical preference (not easy lol), and compartmentalize the social ramifications for later after I try to figure out me for me.



Link to post

Some more details i wanted to get down, both for myself and for help narrowing things down lol...


I've dressed as a woman in private, even have breast forms.  Bra, panties, dresses, etc.  While it feels nice once in a while, I feel like I'm a t-shirt and jeans person regardless.  Other than the more feminine aesthetic, I don't feel much pulling me toward women's fashion.  Rarely have the urge to paint my nails, or wear jewelry.  Tomboy? Lol.


Luckily I'm not particularly hairy because I hate body hair, I shave my armpits, what little chest hair I have, and pubic area.  Don't shave my legs much just because I don't want the questions.  I find it not only more visual and touch pleasing, but feel like it helps cut down on the masculine body odor a bit.  That's bothering me more and more these days, smelling myself when I sweat.


Definitely hate the head hair loss thats progressed the last few years.  I've always been pretty skinny - well slightly less so after pandemic quarantining.  Besides a concerted effort to bulk up in my late 20s to try and fit in with masculine norms thinking that might make me feel better about the body I had.  I started around 135lbs and got up to 170lbs at 5'11".  I lost some weight and all the muscle mass after that since that wasn't the solution obviously.  But never did shake all the weight and put most back on being stuck at home all the time and boredom eating.


Have been on depression and anxiety meds for quite a while at different times.  Probably just regular doctors throwing medicine at symptoms without regard to underlying causes...


I think having boobs would be nice, but also think I could do without.  The boy parts are even more confusing.  I use them obviously, being with an insofar straight woman.  I find myself gravitating toward other ways of pleasuring her more and more though.  Don't really know how much detail to go into there lol, trying to keep it pg.


Leaning non-binary? Aggghhh...  I keep searching.





Link to post
  • Forum Moderator
27 minutes ago, Cris31 said:

I feel like I'm a t-shirt and jeans person regardless. 

Cris, this is okay.  Not every woman is drawn to femininity when choosing clothing.  You can certainly be a jeans and tee type of woman.  You may be able to take something for the hair thinning/loss.  I know several people here have talked of success.  Again that you don't have genital dysphoria.  It is not a sign you are not on the transgender scale. Many trans women and guys can live with the way their bodies are.  The goal is to find a place where you will be comfortable, maybe even quite the "noise" in your head.  This is where you need to be.  There are no hard and fast rules for being trans.   


Link to post

Thanks Jani, I know my desire to put a name to my state of mind/being might not be the healthiest way to go about it.  My analytical brain just can't leave it alone.  The "noise in my head" indeed..  I don't trust my own judgment or thought process I guess? I feel like I can't begin to move forward or act on my feelings without it.  Hate to admit it, but I feel like I'm fishing for affirmation when I know I shouldn't and don't need to...

I did start looking for therapists in my area, not many around that I've found yet.




Link to post
  • Forum Moderator
11 hours ago, Cris31 said:

Hate to admit it, but I feel like I'm fishing for affirmation

This is normal so don't fret. We all look for certainty in life and right now you are not there (to say the least).  


If you cannot find a counselor you might try this link.  Its where I found mine years ago.  




Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Who's Online   5 Members, 0 Anonymous, 73 Guests (See full list)

    • Joanna Eagle
    • RhondaS
    • Red_Lauren.
    • Aurora
    • Robin.C
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Topics With Zero Replies

  • Forum Statistics

    • Total Topics
    • Total Posts
  • Member Statistics

    • Total Members
    • Most Online

    Newest Member
  • Today's Birthdays

    1. CamIsAlive
      (23 years old)
    2. Harper
      (14 years old)
    4. Samsara
  • Posts

    • tracy_j
      That sometimes happens with me, particularly in the summer when I wear a mid thigh skirt, bare legged, around the house and garden. As the post is addressed to my male name the delivery guys / posties probably do have stories to tell. I am on friendly terms with our usual postie though so no real issues. It's probably easier for them at the moment as they are not generally taking signitures, just placing the parcel on the ground as they distance. Being friendly and un-embarrassed usually defuses any situation.   Tracy
    • tracy_j
      Hi Jordan, yes it is bad with the lockdowns. I think the government have been clutching at straws a bit as they fail to cope. I saw an advert last night which brought it home to me a bit that maybe the blood transfusion service is having trouble coping. This was for donation for people suffering sickle cell anaemia. This mainly affects coloured people so they were asking for more specific donors. The request for people who have had covid was for plasma to treat those who are in a bad way with covid, I think, so not really a risk to the general population. The blood service is open but I suspect they are doing stringent checks with normal donations. I heard about your strict lockdown. I wonder how it would be received here. I hope it sorts things down there. I have always wondered though as it only really delays things but at least there seems to be vaccines on the way now.   Tracy
    • tracy_j
      Hi KellyMarie, welcome.   It's good that you have good advice from everyone here. DeeDee is correct in that there are long waiting times for NHS services. That does not mean that you cannot get advice and plan things out. You do not say where in the UK you are and things do differ very slightly between UK countries. There are guidelines given by the NHS and other information from organisations. If you seach online you would find them. These would give you an overview so that you could see how things are organised. If you have problems finding or have questions please don't hesitate to ask as I may have the links / references you would find useful.   Tracy
    • DeeDee
      I do this sometimes too and I recognise it as self sabotage, because in my mind I want to be a UK 12-14 which is what I have always seen as healthy weight, not svelt or supermodel thin, but enough to be able to buy in most places. I may not get there with my shoulders but I want to at least try. When I go through those phases in my head I start calling myself fat and then tell myself that everyone will laugh at the fat (insert insult here) trying to be a woman. One of my sisters would kill to be down to my weight, but she understands the cycle as she has had a lot to deal with too, our other sisters have always been thin and active.  By sabotaging through food it lets me off the hook and I can go back to not doing anything, but also makes it possible to have moobs which, with a padded bra, allow for a shape I pine to see in the mirror and am loathe to lose,even if they are hairy.   That being said, now I am not hiding behind my internal transphobia I want to fix it and silence my inner critic so I have gone back to my couch25k app and restarted it for the 3rd or 4th time in the last two years and have refused to buy in crisps and chocolate and started drinking at least a pint of water each day.
    • DeeDee
      Hi KellyMarie, again can I say it is wonderful to see a parent supporting their child unconditionally.   I'm in my 40's and scared to tell my mother so it speaks volumes to how much your child trusts and loves you that they could come to you with this. Depending on where you are your GP will refer you to your closest G.I.C Gender Identity Clinic.  This always starts with speaking to a counsellor who specialises in gender and sexual health issue, there are a few youth organisations that you may be signposted to like Stonewall and Mermaids or a local trans group but while they are not essential for the process they can be good for exactly the same reason this site is, socialisation, trying out preferred names and pronouns and finding others who understand us. The NHS is simply understaffed and does not have enough specialists trained to help so the waiting times can be somewhere between months and years, so you will both need to be aware of that - it is a long haul, I was lucky but still had to wait 8 months for my initial appointment, it's the reason many choose to go private and do a shared care between a clinic and the GP - which obviously costs more but ultimately follows the same progression, counselling is always the first port of call. You may also start hearing loads of new jargon so if you haven't already I would recommend watching a few videos that explain the difference between cis and trans and that sort of thing.
    • Heather Nicole
      Uncle got me into bread making.   But, can't enjoy it often enough! Bread is carbs, bad for waistline!   Waistline much too big, needs reduction!   Six words: Feels like speaking caveman!
    • Astrid
      Welcome, Keira. Your intro expressed your journey well, and you'll find others here with similar experiences. We're here to listen and share. Join in the conversation!   With best wishes    Astrid
    • Heather Nicole
      I love a nice tank dress
    • Heather Nicole
      Oh, also, I should clarify too, it's less the idea of "male privilege" existing that bothers me, but rather, it's much moreso the idea of males having an exclusive overall advantage that hurts me. So anyone who recognizes female privilege in addition to male privilege is ok by me!!!  
    • Heather Nicole
      This sort of thing certainly seems to be fairly common among trans folk. (It even features prominently in one of my favorite trans stories, "Wandering Son" aka "Hourou Musuko"). I kind of wish I could echo the sentiment, but it was different for me. Not different in an "I found socialization easier with boys" sense though, it was more complicated than that.   Boys would look at me, see a boy, and therefore (depending who was looking) would register either a potential friend or a potential victim. Girls, on the other hand, would look at me, see a boy, and simply stick with the other girls. (At least until teenage years. At that point, my mere existence seemed to be personally offensive to a lot of girls.) I was always the shy introverted type, so my socialization was mainly based around those who approached me. And that was almost always boys.   But, I have to admit, the rare times when I would find myself in an engaged conversation with a girl...those conversations were comfortable in a way that was a little more personal and less superficial than a typical conversation with a random boy, and I really valued those rare exchanges.     Now this is one I can relate to! Ever since I first heard of Gynecomastia, I never could quite understand why other guys would be so bothered by it...I always found it enviable! I guess that one's a big honking red flag for me!     They really are sometimes! Although I never exactly hated what I have down there, necessarily, sometimes it does seem almost a little weird to have all that dangly in-the-way stuff. Especially how the "twins" will randomly..and constantly...decide to get that dull ache and demand attention. It's like:   Me: "OMG, didn't we, like, just take care of this?" Left: "Yea, but we want attention now, too!" Right: "Yea! And we're not gonna let you focus on anything else until you do!" Me: "Ugh, ok, fine, you win again, let's get this out of the way, I'm already late..."     Gabriel! 😄 At the risk of extending any topic-hijacking, I especially feel a need to respond to your post.   First of all, I'm glad you ultimately felt that you could join in and offer your perspective. And I love what you've said here. Femininity had a much-needed reinvention and rebirth around the 1960's. And I've been noticing the past year or so that we both are certainly not the only people who seem to feel that the same rebirth/reinvention is long overdue for masculinity.   This is also one thing I love about transmen and transmasculine individuals that makes me very, very glad to have such wonderful brothers around: I don't know if maybe I'm generalizing, I hope not, but I often feel like transmen and transmasculine and such often make for better men and better examples of masculinity than many cismen do (nothing against cismen in general, of course, I've known many cismen who are also shining examples of positive masculinity).   But it's like, a masculine individual brought up as AFAB...that kind of life experience seems to often force a person towards a much better model of masculinity and away from the more toxic, anachronistic aspects. And I'm very happy to see you consciously dedicated to that advancement.   I should clarify one thing about the way my mind looks at the world, simply regarding terminology:   My mind draws a big distinction between the idea of "privilege" and the idea of...hmm...what to call it...I guess "detriment" for lack of a word that fits better. So, for example, to my mind, a "privilege" would be one gender having something beneficial that another gender lacks, whereas a "detriment" would be one gender having something...well...detrimental that another gender lacks.   Now, I think this next part is where some differences in perspective come in, and I suspect I'm likely the odd-one-out in this: My mind usually categorizes most of the unfair gender differences as EITHER a "privilege" for one side (or the other) OR as a "detriment" to one side (or the other). But reading through this discussion, it seems very common to regard most unfair gender differences as BOTH a "privilege" to one side AND simultaneously a "detriment" to the other side.   To be clear, I absolutely do regard any gender-privilege inequality to be a bad thing regardless of whether I feel I'm looking at the "privilege" or "detriment" category. And I have no intention of promotion my world-view on this as "better", its just different perspectives, differing terminology and classifications. But still the same values.   So if I say anything that may seem dismissive of male privilege, what I really mean is three things:   A. I fully recognize there are bad things women have to face in life that they should not have to face, regardless of what terminology I may ascribe to it.   B. I have just slightly enough awareness of epistemology that, whatever the topic, I'm fully aware of the possibility that I may very well have no idea whatsoever what in the world I'm talking about, and if so, I wouldn't even be aware of my own ignorance!   C. I've faced a lot misandry (both "male detriment" and "female privilege" varieties) in ways that I feel like the general population isn't commonly willing to accept even exists. So it's a huge sore spot that is, I admit, very difficult for me to be fully rational about. Though I try.   I'd also like to say, for what it's worth, Gabriel, even as an amab who's never publicly presented as female, I can still directly sympathize with some of the "male privilege"/"female detriment" examples you and others have expressed. Especially the feelings of not being heard, feeling like your voice is overlooked and marginalized. That's been a recurring pain for me ever since I was a kid, so for what it's worth, I understand and I do sympathize.   And would you believe I was actually turned down for a job once because I was a guy? True story! The interviewer was even explicitly clear about it. Can't for the life of me understand why they even gave me an interview in the first place, if that was how they felt. It was an old, local retail chain that no longer exists, but to this day I have to be careful about mentioning it, because there's a lot of people who are so deeply convinced that sort of thing can't happen to males, they would (and have) weaponized it as me being sooo very misogynistic that I would make up an "obvious" lie like that. Again, main point being, you have a sympathetic friend in me.   Sorry everyone for bringing up the privilege thing again! I don't mean to re-derail!
    • Astrid
      So which instrument(s) do you play? 🎶🙂   Notedly,   Astrid
    • Teri Anne
      I tend to emotionally eat sometimes if I'm feeling down or really bored Since covid and the staying home thing my weight has gotten out of control. There are times I feel guilty for getting so heavy that I just think what the heck and eat anyway.
    • ElizabethStar
      Hi @RadicalEmma. Nice to meet you.
    • Yvonne
      @CallMeKeira @Charlize @KayC @Timber Wolf @Carolyn Marie  Hello and thank you everyone.
    • CallMeKeira
      This is far from comprehensive, so I may append it later. In my heart and mind, my name is Keira. I was born in the summer 27 years ago to decidedly working class, religious, and moderately conservative parents. They married and divorced multiple times, and my siblings and I had a pretty tumultuous upbringing. Between the chaos and extended family drama was a scrawny little runt with tawny brown hair, a minor learning disability, and boundless energy.   But, as I got older, I started feeling different. I got bullied a great deal for a number of things, even by family members. Called a number of slurs and derogatory things, I clung to the company of my mom as often as I could. I grew up listening to LeeAnn Rhimes and the like, and going shopping with her. As puberty really set in, though, I was thrust unceremoniously into the "boy's" role and the world of men. Needless to say, my soft nature lead to a lot more bullying. It was in this time I really started diving into literature, games, and other worlds. I built a refuge in my mind and resolved to hold out for the future, by giving them all what they expected while I hid in a little room in my head.   In that room I stayed locked, only occasionally peaking out. I grew closer with my dad to learn how to "be a man", tried hanging out with my brother's friends, and searched for a male role that I could at least painlessly inhabit (I settled on computer geek). I thought it was painless, anyhow. Turned out to be more like demise by a thousand cuts.   As I stumbled out of high school and through college off and on for several years, the pressure began to build. Some poor choices that in hindsight were me desperately trying to live up to expectations resulted in my first and second attempts at the big "S". Consulting mental health professionals to address my unrelenting depression and anxiety got me so far, until a 20 credit hour course load and a 20 hour a week work schedule led me to voluntarily seek hospitalization. After that, I spent the next year and a half grappling with a misdiagnosis that I only recently got revised. The medication they had me on still works for my general issues, though. I have been embracing the inner me over the past year, and dipping my toes in the water, so to speak. I look forward to have a serious discussion with my therapist soon, as she doesn't specialize in gender issues, though she's otherwise fantastic. This is an abridged version of my life, but I'm here, breaking through.
  • Upcoming Events

Contact TransPulse

TransPulse can be contacted in the following ways:

Email: Click Here.

To report an error on this page.


Your use of this site is subject to the following rules and policies, whether you have read them or not.

Terms of Use
Privacy Policy
DMCA Policy
Community Rules


Upstream hosting for TransPulse provided by QnEZ.


Special consideration for TransPulse is kindly provided by The Breast Form Store.
  • Create New...