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Reevaluation

Discussion in 'Gender Identity and Expression' started by emerry, May 16, 2018 at 6:42 AM.

  1. emerry

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    You know, it's been years since I began my "gender journey" and I feel like I got so wrapped up in it that I lost sight of where I'm actually heading. I don't know any more. I don't understand any more. I need a fresh start and reevaluation. My feelings might have changed a lot on the way. So... where should I start? All I remember is... a headache. So mich has happened that it would take ages to describe it. I have no clue any more what it means to be a man or a woman. I just live day-to-day. I learn. I take care of my dog. I listen to music. And so on. But it's bit like I'm dead on the inside, because too much has happened. Really... i just feel fatigue.
     
  2. FieTheDeer

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    I relate to this a lot.

    I feel like I have a sense of my identity.... but at the same time, what can that possibly mean when my only sense of identity is just knowing that I have a mental illness, dysphoria, and pain and confusion surrounding it?

    Honestly I feel like a lot of the trans community idealizes / romanticizes transition, but that’s still a really flat way to deal with dysphoria and self esteem sometimes. It’s not always available for everyone due to financial reasons, compromised safety in a work environment or communities, or some people seek out transition and their bodies just can’t process the hormones easily, or they never are able to “pass” so they detransition because it’s simply easier socially.... or like me, there are many aspects of me that would love transition, but I can’t risk living “in between” right now because I’m nonbinary for pretty much all those reasons, and I don’t want to fully transition to be male passing. I feel like the social pressure of being different might actually be stronger and more detrimental to me than my dysphoria itself. Maybe it’s all just a matter of weighing the scales of the two until one clearly becomes unbearable and outweighs the other.

    Maybe I’m just stuck because of where I’m living at the moment, and also the fact that my chronic pain condition will always trump priority over my gender stuff and self esteem because it’s hard enough to just stay afloat with that always looming. Maybe it’s a matter of having goals, but maybe it’s also a matter of just learning how to cope. I don’t know. Anyway sorry this wasn’t exactly reassuring or offering any answers or solutions, but I know how you feel and can relate.
     
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  3. emerry

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    Yup, maybe.

    ---------------------

    Okey, I feel like my question got lost in the paragraph. The question is: where do I start the questioning again? Lol. I want to think it through again... even if to 'close the case'.
     
    #3 emerry, May 16, 2018 at 9:34 AM
    Last edited: May 16, 2018 at 9:34 AM
  4. RainbowGreen

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    Okay, let me try to guide you.

    What made you question the first time? What made you think that perhaps you were not cisgender? What made you uncomfortable about your assigned sex? Have you done anything since that first questionning to feel better? If so, have you noticed any improvements?

    Just a few questions to restart your reflexion.
     
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  5. emerry

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    Sorry I'm being fussy but I'd rather not think about the past any more and try to look for where I'm at now xD
     
    #5 emerry, May 17, 2018 at 12:29 AM
    Last edited: May 17, 2018 at 12:29 AM
  6. RainbowGreen

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    I understand, but the past shapes you into who you are now. It's a bit of knowing where you came from to know where you're headed.
    If not by looking back, I don't really know how you can reevalute :/
     
  7. emerry

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    Okay then.

    Chronologically. I didn't really think about gender in childhood. I didn't see myself as particularily girly or boyish either. I was just me. I remember my mom told me one of her childhood friends was trans and I was like... yeah, bad luck! It must be awful! ... little did I know at that time. But I definitely remember that typical "boyish" activities spoke to me more. I liked to run around and be outside. Blocks were more fun than dolls too.

    Then came high school and first period. Puberty. At first, I hated it that I am a girl, because girls seemed to get the short end of the stick. I liked sport and being active, periods and being weak were bad for that. I also realised that I am much more similar to boys than girls at that time. It came as a shock, because boys seemed like bad people for some reason. I was disgusted with myself. But it brought me understanding that nobody was pressuring women to behave like women in reality (I thought it was the case, because who on Earth would like to behave feminine, right?), that they wanted to behave like that and it came naturally to them, and to me not so much. So I was 14 when I first noticed that I have a "boy brain". Behaving feminine felt so odd that it was the main reason I didn't like being a girl. So... that realisation made me feel a lot better. I changed a lot in my life at that time. I started to exersice in order to be more fit. And to eat more healthy to be slimmer. I started to practice karate and travel, everything I was told was too hard... and it wasn't too hard, even when I got period. It was all complete bollocks. It was good to live to the fullest. I abandoned the dresses too, they were uncomfortable.

    A bit later, I started to question my gender and feel uncomfortable with being treated like a girl, being assumed to be one. I "travelled" through many non-bianry labels in order to discover at the beginning of college that in the end, it was all about feeling masculine / like a guy. I tried to change how I dress to appear more androgynous, and after that realisation, more masculine. I found out I'm bi around this time too. And then I came out as trans and bi. Last year, I tried to change my name but, I lacked the conviction. I also lost the conviction in dressing masculine, but coming out did help a lot with the beig treated like a girl part, and with the disconnect between me and others that I felt. After coming out, I still had/have parts of myself to discover that have to do with more genuine self-expression, I am learning to have fun, so to say, and to see nothing wrong with expressing myself as a guy / expressing my masculinity. I guess, I still lack the confidence to go out of my way to announce that I am a guy... or whatever I am. This feeling of being a guy diminished a lot, because the disconnect disappeared.
     
  8. Crisalide

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    In my opinion, you feel this way because you questioned yourself so intensely that this happened:
    Why do you want to question again, if you feel <<dead inside, because too much has happened>>? Why not take a break, or maybe question but more slowly?
    (P.S. I too have no clue anymore of what man or woman mean xD)
     
  9. RainbowGreen

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    From what I read, you seem to be on the right track :slight_smile: Sorry if I made you uncomfortable by asking you about your past.

    Your situation has already improved since you entered college it seems.

    One thing I can say as a trans person, is that there is a stage (not always, I know everyone is different) where you realize that you still feel uncomfortable being a gender non-conforming cis person. Maybe you need more time to explore being masculine before jumping into the gender stuff.

    You said you don't feel a disconnect anymore. Is it because you now allow yourself to present in a masculine way? What about the name? Did you want to change your name because you thought your birth name was too feminine? Did you want to change it to a male name or something more neutral? (assuming it's not already neutral)
     
  10. emerry

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    Well, I want to have a clue, right? Lol. Slowly? Yes. Definitely.
    Hey, so you too? Lol.

    Technicaly speaking, my situation improved during high school as well. I started from a pretty bad place.

    But am I trans or am I not trans? I have not done anything medically but I have come out as transgender, and heck, that changed a lot for the positive.

    No, not really. The coming out has changed the most, because people seem not to pay attention to how a woman dresses. Maybe? I don't have anything against my birth name, I like it, it's just that I wanted to transition. Now I'm just feeling "bleh" and don't have any feelings at all. Yes, my birth name is quite feminine. Not the worst in the world, though, it's a pretty serious name, not a name of a flower, for example. I wanted others to know that I feel like a guy. But now that I think about it, even if I did change my name, nobody would notice or read it the right way. Unless I presented extremely masculine. I did go through a phase of dressig masculine, now it's more all over the place. I sort of assimilated that to my wardrobe and got bored with it. And I am not sure if I want boy short hair. Now it's chin length and I like it.
     
  11. RainbowGreen

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    The thing about being trans is that everybody's experience is different.

    You might want to medically transition by taking hormones, doing surgeries, or you might not. You might want to dress masculine, or you might not.

    I can only speak from my experience, but most of the time, I have long hair for a guy. Yes, it means I get called M'am more, but I don't really care. I like my hair like that. I tend to dress more masculine as well, but if I like something and it's deemed feminine, screw it, I'm putting it on. What I'm trying to say is that your wardrobe and hairstyle don't affect your transness.

    This is interesting. Why do you think your peers would not care for your name change unless you present extremely masculine? Sure, there are people who will try to find any reason to say you're ''not trans enough'', but most people are not like that. Often, we are our worst critics and we expect the worst.

    Only you can say if you are trans or not, but the fact that you are questionning at all is a pretty big sign. Most cisgender people never ever consider the idea of being trans, even if they are gender non-conforming. If you say coming out as transgender changed your life for the positive, maybe it means you need to continue exploring that path.
     
  12. emerry

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    And why would they care? Especially if they don't know what transgender is, they would be left clueless. I know a middle aged cisgender heterosexual feminine woman called Joe. Seriously. I do. In reality, it's not that I want to change my name or anything - I want the effect, not the means.

    I think we are hitting a gap in language here, with the trans/not trans. After all, we are communicating something, and this is what it is about, not the sound itself. We are hitting a gap in the very understanding of the concept.
     
  13. RainbowGreen

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    Oh, I get what you mean.

    Then, how about not using the word transgender to communicate your feelings? When I came out, I explained the male vs female brain thing. No one gave me shit about it when I used that, and I think it's easier for cisgender people to get that than the ''I am transgender'' thing. I told them that I had a male brain and thus having a female body and being treated as a female was distressing. You can show them articles about it since it has been researched. Trans guys have brains closer to cisgender males than cisgender females, and vice-versa for trans females.

    I'm guessing you already heard about the brain thing, but essentially, the brain has a map of the body, and for trans people, that map is closer to the opposite sex's map. So, the brain expects different genitals and no periods. You can see this theory in action for post-op trans people. They don't have phantom limb symptom for the most part, unlike cis women who had a mastectomy or cis males who lost their penis. For the social point of view, the brain expects to be treated as male by others and thus is confused when it isn't.

    All in all, I think it's probably easier to explain if you approach it from this angle, since yeah, they probably can't relate to your feelings if they aren't questionning themselves.
     
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  14. emerry

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    That's a great idea, thanks! That would certainly be easier for others to understand or notice.
     
  15. Sebby45

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    As for any questions about validity, I talked to my therapist about not feeling valid because I didn't want to medically transition. They threw that one out the window. It doesn't matter what you do or don't do physically, it doesn't change your identity. Just thought I'd throw that in the mix.
     
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