Today is Transgender Day of Visibility….
I’d like to give a shout out to all those on the trans spectrum who don’t socially transition and therefore never go public for various reasons (most don’t feel the need to transition and are happy being “just a crossdresser” etc.), and often are deeply, deeply closeted — there’s probably 10 of them for every public transitioner, making them the vast dark matter of the trans universe.
Unfortunately many of them are looked down upon not only by society at large, but also too often by other trans people. Yes, I see you, and yes, you’re “real enough” too.
Sometimes I am an un-ironic delicate fucking flower.
Today the gender dysphoria hit hard — I’ve been having bouts of crying all afternoon and yet to reach that cathartic cry.
The trigger: my hair. Or rather my my utter inability to style it. I’ve never had long hair before, and being raised as a boy in a household without sisters has left me without even a second-hand knowledge of what do to with it.
It’s times like these that I feel like a 12-year-old girl, on the verge of womanhood and not quite sure how to do it — except that I’m in a 52-year-old body, lacking many of the essential life styles of being a girl/woman that most my peers learned through osmosis by that age.
The head knows that, yes, I’ll learn those skill — albeit having to do so on an accelerated pace (and thank you to all who’ve offered to help).
The head knows that the past is the past, and that I need to focus on the years going forward being able to live as a woman. Especially now I that have fewer years in front of me than behind me.
But the heart is still mourning those lost decades of my life. The girlhood I’ll never have. The young womanhood I’ll never have. The female body — the young female body — I’ll never have. The female friendship and companionship of girlhood that I’ll never have.
I don’t mean to romanticize being a young girl/young woman, because I know all too well how painful those years could be for the various women in my life. And yes, I know women can be just as shitty to each other as men can be, albeit in different ways.
But it’s still hard not to feel like there’s a void in part of me that will never be fully filled.
Wanna know why trans women are often cranky… it’s because the drug that’s used to block testosterone is actually normally used as a diuretic, but we use it at far higher doses. Meaning you’re constantly needing to pee hella bad, dying of thirst, and craving all the salty snacks (ALL of them) — all at the same damn time.
Trader Joe’s miso soup to the rescue. Some trans women will drink pickle juice straight from the jar, but I hate pickles. Although I have been known to eat salt straight from the shaker.
For those of you curious about what my new hairline will look like once the hair transplants eventually grow in. Photos below the fold, because gorlesque show girl. (Nothing super gory, but my forehead currently is a collection of 2,000 tiny scabs where the follicles were relocated.)
Although it should read: I love the woman I’ve become because I fought hard to become her.
Unsuccessful experiments in blending in….
I had another electrolysis session this morning, which meant I couldn’t really wear foundation, contour or blush the rest of the day until my skin calmed down again.
So I tried wearing workout tights and top, with a hoodie, while getting brunch and running errands. Sporty girl who’s just done something athletic and therefore isn’t wearing make-up,* right?
Well I got”sirred’ twice and I got “the look”** more than few times. Not unexpected, but it’s still always a bee sting to the heart.
At least it was useful as a calibration exercise….
If a number of trans women seem “excessively” femme, it’s because we often have to send unambiguous signals about how we want to be gendered. And being able to blend in can be an issue of emotional — and sometimes physical — survival.
* I did have on mascara, eye liner and shadow, plus lipstick.
** It’s usually a glance held too long, as people are trying to figure out what gender I am, or why “a man in dress” is out on the streets.
Forgot to check the mail yesterday, so when I got caught up today I discovered I’d received my new birth certificate! (Yes, I literally jumped for joy.)
I’m just really lucky to have been born in a state that will change your birth certificate. Some state require major surgery first. Some states won’t let you change it all — and the Talibaptists are pushing for more state to prohibit it.
Like the “bathroom bills,” it’s part of an attempt to legislatively harass trans people out of (public) existence. Since it forces trans people to out themselves when getting legal ID that requires birth certificate (e.g. a driver’s license or passport). And given the state of things it might not be long before we’re all carrying around our birth certificates just to be safe.
So the welcoming from my team was quite sweet. A balloon reading “Welcome Back!” at my desk and a card signed by all my co-workers. Friendly receptions from other people I’ve interacted with.
But just to clarify last night’s worries…
I knew my immediate team would be fine. (I actually rarely work directly with my team members, rather we’re in the same team because we all do the same job.) It’s more about transitioning to being a woman in the workplace, because women are treated differently, particularly in the tech industry, I work with different teams and stakeholders as a big part of my job. So how I’m being treated as a woman at work is something that’s only going to reveal itself over time.
As a cynical friend of mine observed, I’ll know I’ve made it when the 20 percent pay cut comes through.
TMW, your hormone doc tells you that your testosterone levels are still at the top of the “normal” female range, and so doubling your testosterone suppressant medication would help with your breast growth, but… it might also kill your libido and your ability to perform. Possibly permanently.