Tuesday, 7 June 2016

a visit to the doctor

I saw my doctor yesterday and besides the usual questions about my health he asked how I was managing with my dysphoria. I am one of only three patients among the 1,500 that he regularly sees who have experienced it. That puts us at 0.2% of his practice which is not far from the accepted percentage of transgender people among the general population of 0.3%.

Of the three, I am the only who has not transitioned or plans to. One did so 20 years ago while the other is in the process of embarking on a full transition at the age of 60.

I told my doctor that I am fine living the way I am and that I can put up with the dysphoria assuming that I can dress regularly. If it works why mess with it.

He told me that this transitioning patient could not go back and forth between male and female presentations. I can understand that as this is not for everyone.

My being on my own again is not changing anything and I am doing what is right for me. Should those feelings ever change I would then proceed perhaps to a social transition at most. My doctor thought that if I could maintain this type of lifestyle it might be best rather than embark on the full transition journey. He was basing his opinion on what this other patient was experiencing.

When he told this person that she was being brave, she apparently gave him the same response that I did which was: it’s not about being brave but more about running out of road and having little choice left.


2 comments:

  1. Joanna, I think it's so terrific that you're so grounded and settled about yourself. I recently started seeing a psychiatrist and immediately told him that I am transgender. I was a little apprehensive but figured that if he couldn't deal with it I'd just move to someone else. He was fine with it, by the way, and we spent very little time talking about it.

    Interestingly, I recently participated in a study out of Purdue on how transgender people feel about disclosing this about themselves with medical professionals. I was interviewed for an hour by a grad student there. This is evidently a problem for many, and she is (I believe) writing about it to help doctors, therapists, etc., understand more about how they can facilitate these discussions.

    Emma

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    1. putting your cards on the table is absolutely the right thing to do Emma. I found that my doctor knew next to nothing about this subject and I have been educating him. But then this is not surprising since this is not an exact science and not taught in medical school. Good on you!

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