An Open Letter to Dysphoria, Dysmorphia and All Women

Dear Dysphoria and Dysmorphia,

The two of you are a most fiendish pair. Conspiring and working in conjunction to make me, and the hundreds of thousands of transgender women like me, feel worthless, ashamed and isolated for decades and likely even centuries. You leave a trail of ruin in your path, many times a trail that leads some to end their own lives. Your place in this world is only to tear down and destroy. Continue reading “An Open Letter to Dysphoria, Dysmorphia and All Women”

Hello Dysphoria My Old Nemesis…

Today something happened and I don’t know why. Dysphoria came back in a really strong and acute way, something I haven’t felt for a very long time. I had simply decided to change out of my workout clothes that I had been wearing since I went to the gym this morning. As I was changing my underwear, I removed the tight briefs that I wear when I work out (help with the tucking as I work out in leggings) and was going to put on a much more comfortable pair of everyday panties.  That’s when that demon that so many transgender people know all too well, decide to rear its ugly head.  Welcome back dysphoria, you sinister bastard. Continue reading “Hello Dysphoria My Old Nemesis…”

Judges and Clients and Doctors…Oh My!!

So it’s been a really long time since I wrote my last blog.  I could probably write 10 separate blogs (and I still may) to cover each of these topics in their entirety, but for now I want to give everyone and update the crazy myriad of things that have occurred since my last writing.

Since the end of August, I’ve hit some major milestones.  My legal name change was completed at the end of October.  I elected to petition the court for a confidential change meaning that I would not have to publish an ad in the newspaper announcing my name change prior to the court date. It also meant that the court records and my updated birth certificate would be sealed once the case was closed. However, there is an added burden as well.  In Wisconsin, a confidential change requires you to prove that publishing the ad would likely endanger you. So I went into court that day armed to the gills with evidence of harassment I’ve received, general stories & statistics of transgender violence and even supporting letters from my therapist and doctor. Continue reading “Judges and Clients and Doctors…Oh My!!”

Why Now?

“Why Now?” Shortly after I came out to my family that I would be transitioning, my father took me out to lunch and asked me that single solitary question. On the surface it seems like such a simple question and that it should have an equally simple answer.  But the question and the response to it are so much bigger than they appear on the surface. Continue reading “Why Now?”

Explaining Dysphoria: What is it, How does it feel

I received a couple of messages following my last blog post asking about dysphoria.  One came from a cis-gendered person who wanted to understand more about what transgender people experience.  Two others, trans sisters, expressed a frustration that I share; how do you explain dysphoria to someone who has never experienced it?  Gender identity is such an innate thing, so inherent to our very essence that most people never have to think about it.  It just is.  Unfortunately, herein lies the issue. Continue reading “Explaining Dysphoria: What is it, How does it feel”

A return to the dysphoria

My transition continues to progress, every day I’m living more and more as my authentic self.  However, I’ve not yet reached the date where I plan to go full-time.  There are still aspects of my life (work, other hobbies) where I have not yet transitioned and thus must return to a fully male presentation.  Last night I was thrust into one of those situations.  While painful in the moment, in retrospect it was a really good experience for me that taught me a few lessons about myself. Continue reading “A return to the dysphoria”

Of Strength, Confidence and Courage…..

As a transgender woman progressing through my transition, I often hear comments about how strong or courageous I am. I’ve never been very good at taking compliments but these statements in particular I’ve found difficult to believe. I feel like I’ve been a scared little girl, hiding in shadows all my life. Even as I creep out now, I fear that one wrong step, one ill-timed event, might send me running back to the relative safety of that hiding place once again. A few recent events allowed me to really analyze the realities of the strength, confidence and courage it takes to be successful on this journey we call transition. Continue reading “Of Strength, Confidence and Courage…..”

Passing? Blending? At what cost?

Browse any transgender focused support forum on the web and you’ll see countless threads with various questions and advice about “passing”.  First, let me say, I hate that term as it applies to the transgender person.  “Passing” is, of course, the idea that we can move through public spaces presenting as our authentic selves and be believed to be someone who was born into the gender we are presenting as. The problem is, the word “passing” suggest that we are “passing” ourselves off as something other than what we are.  I believe this term originated this way in the cross dressing community where the goal of the activity is to appear as something they’re not for a limited time before returning to their typical life. Continue reading “Passing? Blending? At what cost?”

3 Month Hormone Check-in

As a transgender woman, tracking progress of our medical transition seems to be an implied obligation. So last weekend marked three months since I first started Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). It’s kind of interesting because for the first two months, things were very subtle, so much so that I couldn’t even detect them.  Well this month that all changed.  But before I get ahead of myself. Continue reading “3 Month Hormone Check-in”