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How to handle potential breakup before transition?

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Hello to all you beautiful people out there, 

I came out as trans this summer and my mental health has been deteriorating since then so I have now gone into a clinic to get better. I am very worried that my relationship will come to an end sooner or later (we have 2 young kids, I gave birth to both of them), so I am very afraid to return home. With this fear I am not progressing regarding a potential transition (I think I am non binary so the goal is not clear to me). So it is all somehow intertwined - my health, my relationship issues, my transness. Has anyone else experienced something like this and how did you manage to advance somehow, step by step, with your life? And how did you manage fear? And I feel like I do not have that much time left to solve all this as I will have to go back to work at some point. But I am just not functioning... 

Many thanks in advance! 

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Thanks, Mary. My wife is generally supportive but has had issues with anxiety for a long time. 

I am also very much worried about my kids. 

And I keep finding excuses not to transition.... 

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Hi Billy.

I understand your dilemma intimately as my wife has deep anxiety over any potential transition on my part (fortunately kids are grown).  Fear is a big part of the anxiety driver ... dealing with my wife's fear, and my own about the process of coming out socially (and I am not even close to that yet).

I think getting started with your therapy is the best thing possible.  The other thing I have done is to avoid creating an arbitray schedule or deadline for myself or my spouse. 

Seeing this as a long term journey gives both of you time and space to come to a mutually accepted conclusion.  I hope yours is that you can remain together.

Deep breaths ... one step at a time

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@Billy I'm with you on this roller coaster ride. My wife is ranging from barely understanding, to out right hatred. (verbal only, never physical) Since my coming out to her in my view was being honest with her and my struggles with trans issues. I was hoping to share with her my true concerns, however she didn't see it that way. Instead of me coming out of the closet, I drug her into it with me, and it's totally unfair to her. I have a therapist, a network of twitter friends, and TransPulseForum to vent to. She has no one, and she isn't paying a stranger to convince her she's wrong about my transgender issues. As @KayCmentioned fear is a big part of the anxiety driver for both of us. This is a long term journey.





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Thank you both for your replies and for sharing your situation. It is good to know that one is not alone or that it is one's fault to be in this situation. Just fate, life, the river as it flows... 

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@BillyTransition issues aren't just issues for the person transitioning. If you're in a relationship then it the couple that is dealing with transition. I hope you and yours are able to work things out.



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Mmindy, that is true. However, we have to be careful not to blame ourselves for who we are. I thought, mainly out of ignorance, that this would all go away, I didn't even know what transgender was, I was thinking this "feminine" quirk of mine would go away once I got married... then ... well, maybe once I have kids, yeah! But no. So now we involve a wife and two kids.

It is true that it is a shared experience, but for it to be truly shared, it must be travelled together. Having a hostile spouse is not together, and to ignore your own needs to transition are not "together" either. I hope you find a way to open up a dialog with your wife.

Regarding Billy and the children, my biggest fear by far was telling them. But I had to. And so I did. And they reacted as if I told them I had gone to the library. It was like a nothing thing to them... its a generational thing. And it IS a slow process with no defined dates or endings, so just take it slow and easy and day by day.

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5 hours ago, Sabine said:

It is true that it is a shared experience, but for it to be truly shared, it must be travelled together. Having a hostile spouse is not together, and to ignore your own needs to transition are not "together" either. I hope you find a way to open up a dialog with your wife.

Regarding Billy and the children, my biggest fear by far was telling them. But I had to. And so I did. And they reacted as if I told them I had gone to the library. It was like a nothing thing to them... its a generational thing. And it IS a slow process with no defined dates or endings, so just take it slow and easy and day by day.

@Sabine, my wife is a roller coaster of emotions about my transition. Most days are fair to good, followed by a surprising uprising of anger. We're hoping counseling will help us. I think you're correct about our children taking the news of our transgender issues as if it's a semi regular thing. When I came out to my wife, I was hoping she would be reasonable about discussing my lifelong struggle to deal with the bigotry in my family and work place. The best preplan rarely survives real world implementation. She screamed at me for an hour, then rushed to our grown children and outed me to them and their spouses. Contrary to her wishes, they supported me and my situation. The worst day in my life was when I came out to my wife. The better day was when she outed me. 


Go go slow lean on those you can trust, and know we're in this together.





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Thank you all for your support and kind remarks. 

I find it very difficult to go slow as life is pretty hard these days. And I want things to get better. 

So today I asked my close friends and my brother to use a male name and male pronouns to me to see if it fits. They are very supportive. As I am currently away from home, I will also ask my wife if this is doable for her by email (no option to call). 

This feels like the beginning of a marathon. I just hope to have enough hope and energy to get to the finish line. 

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