As someone who is in the process of transitioning and still not fully committed to coming out at this stage of my life (I’m 65), I am trying to understand the potential reactions that friends and family members will have if I do and what predictable stages of progress I can expect.
Outright rejection is the easiest one and is not even a stage; it is a non-starter. Socialization and religious dogma have conspired to support rejection as the spontaneous reaction for most people. It is reinforced by either a lack of desire to try to understand or a militant…
In a previous article I wrote about the challenges of walking the line between the GUY CODE and the GIRL CODE as I transition. It made me wonder:
Guess what? When I Googled “transgender code” all I got was a full page of guides on how to code “transgender” on a medical form so that a doctor could submit the right paperwork to an insurance company to get paid for treating transgender individuals.
Nope, no real TRANSGENDER CODE written by us. (I really am transgender by the way.)
So, let’s change that. I am starting the first Transgender Code (that…
All my life I just wanted to be accepted by women. I never understood why. I felt their hearts in a way that virtually never happened when I was with the guys. To be clear, there were many women with whom I had absolutely no connection. My reference here is to the gender as a group. I have always felt an instantaneous bond and comfort with a group of women that I never felt with a group of guys.
With the guys I always felt like I was play acting. I am always required to actively participate in the conversation…
If my gender incongruence isn’t my primary thought at the moment, it always seems to be constantly running in the background of my thoughts. I could be walking down the street thinking about work and then a woman passes and my brain hits the brakes with one or all of the following:
“Wow she looks great; I wish I was her.”
“I wish I could wear something like that.”
“I wish I had her hair.”
“What am I thinking?”
“Stop looking so hard. Don’t be the “creepy guy”.”
“Who am I kidding? I can never pass.”
I keep waiting for it to just go away…
I have written endlessly and somewhat boringly and repetitively here about my transgender experience. My writing is filled with extreme emotional swings with a number of stops along the way.
I am tired
I am really tired right now.
I am tired of being transgender. I am tired of gender dysphoria. I am tired of the stress of shame. I am tired of this endless sense of guilt. I am tired of thinking about my gender almost every waking moment. I am tired of worrying about what my family and friends…
As I entered the 1980’s I was able to leave my raging testosterone period behind. I was becoming the “man” my world expected. I went to college, dated a lot of women, bought my own car and contributed to the up-keep of my parents’ home in which I was still living.
By the time I finished my graduate degree, I had no student debt because I worked and paid my own tuition. To my parents’ pride, I never asked them for any money for my education. I worked and went to school at the same time.
By my 25th birthday…
As each year passed, male socialization and increasing testosterone continued to add layers to my male persona. This is when male identity got so deep imbedded in me that I was able to completely suppress my female gender. I defined her as a personal “quirk” that I was able to dismiss and totally ignore.
1970’s New York City was dark, dingy and in disrepair. Subway door didn’t open, the lights rarely worked and the subway windows were spray painted over in an artistic expression of urban decay. …
It’s true. Just watch the TV from then: The Honeymooners, The Donna Reed Show, Leave It to Beaver, Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, Make Room for Danny, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Green Acres, I Love Lucy, Father Knows Best, the list goes on and on.
Those shows defined my understanding of male and female roles. They also reflected my real life, my mom stayed home and my dad went to work.
It made sense to me that since I was a “boy”, I followed my dad’s lead. Earlier in my life it was made clear to me that I…
I was finally diagnosed as transgender three years ago at age 62. Until then, I struggled with un-named demons that tortured my male ego. I was clueless that I had a female soul living in my heart while I forced myself to be the male I and everyone expected. I learned to stay alive in a hostile world that I knew would see me as the gender enemy if my truth came out.
In order to survive living between two genders in the 1950’s and 60's, I had to learn my spy craft from the start. …
Episode 1: A Double Agent is Born
Writers note: As a Baby Boomer, I grew up in a world I am glad no longer exists. Many of my contemporaries would aggressively disagree. To them it truly was “the Glory Days.” Rules were simpler, life was simpler and they were younger. In our middle age, their bodies have aged with many aches, pains and limitations. Additionally, their tolerance for change has been extremely reduced.
Discovering that I am transgender at 62 years of age set off a massive reevaluation of every aspect of who I am. I have written extensively about…
After decades of denial I finally answered the question “What’s wrong with me?” The answer is “Nothing”. I am transgender and I am OK.