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we talk some more....

I have been greatly bolstered by my blog followers of late and have received some wonderfully supportive comments that are helping get through this critical period in my life.

I say critical because I need to put to rest the idea that I will ever transition and I am closer than ever to entrenching that idea in my head.

I understand very well that Joanna is not going anywhere and that she represents my only lifeline in keeping myself balanced and in control (in as much as one can exert control) of my GID. The trick is going to be finding just the recipe of cross gender expression.

Yesterday, N and I took a walk in the old part of the city and we talked about a potential future together. We talked about the things I said in my blog and I explained that a lot of the statements I made were accurate but were also peppered with spur of the moment emotions and impressions. They are reflections of reality or sometimes wishful thinking which allows it to be my vehicle for personal therapy. If I can’t reflect on these things here, where can I do so?

I was lauded by some of you for sharing my blog with her, and while I knew there would be fallout, the frank discussion about where I am in my life needed to be done. Neither of us can afford to be deceived at this point in our lives.

She knows and accepts Joanna needs to exist and that my condition is not a choice. She has always accepted this even as I myself was struggling with my own self acceptance.

Her problem lies more with my treatment of her while we were together and I was living the struggles of dealing with my ex spouse, parenting my children from a distance while trying to come to terms with my gender issues. It was a maelstrom of stress which had me saying things I should not have said.

I had lost confidence that we were on the same side and that began to erode our relationship.

As a prerequisite to any potential return to couple hood, she wants me to seek therapy for verbal abuse and I will do so. It will actually do me good regardless of whether we can reconcile or not. I know for a fact however, that the sources of the stress I was experiencing are being dealt with in a more effective way today than they were and this last year on my own has been very therapeutic.

Last night she also acknowledged to me that she had made mistakes which were not helping things. I greatly appreciated this admission.

N noted that I had started to build a separate life as Joanna which she found a bit troubling. But I explained that my cross gender expression cannot be done in complete isolation any longer and the people I have met over the last year have enriched me as a person. People like Sabrina and Ginette, who only know me as a woman, have made my life more interesting and I have been helping them as well; one with her loneliness and the other with life guidance that only a person twice her age can provide. It certainly beats walking alone in a shopping mall and I don’t think N need feel threatened by my encountering these acquaintances for coffee here and there.

My attempts at connecting with the trans community in the past have been hit and miss. Actually they have been mostly miss. By encountering non transgender people as Joanna I have been able to feel better about myself and know that my female identity can have more of a purpose than going dress shopping.

I need this to be able to continue in order to feel whole.

N understood after I had explained it to her and she acknowledged that it must be lonely always going out dressed on my own.

Comments

  1. Joanna,
    Talking is good and if you are to have any chance of moving forward with a relationship with N then it will help that she pick up on the many uncertainties that you deal with on a day to day basis.

    It may help if she can see your GID in a positive light. I am assuming that your prior breakup with N was due, in part, to your inability to control your temper. While I can blow my stack in male mode I hardly ever do anything but smile when I am dressed and made up. While I am not abusive by nature, as a large, powerful man I know that I can be intimidating. I doubt that I will scare or intimidate or even raise my voice if I am wearing a dress, pantyhose, a wig, makeup and heels. While I am happily married for a very long time my wife had commented on occasion that while I am a nice guy as a guy I seem even more pleasant when dressed.

    Perhaps the anger and yelling that you displayed in the past were due to your inability to being able to express yourself as Joanna. When things get tough at work I find that I have a greater need for my 'girl' time. There have even been times when I have been stressed to the point that my wife has simply said that she thinks I should go get dressed.

    I think that in my case dressing releases endorphins that just make life better and the act of dressing and presenting and getting out while dressed gives me a sense of peace and affirmation.

    If you get back together with N and she has a good understanding of the needs that you have to present as Joanna then perhaps things can work out.

    I wish you only the best.

    Pat

    ReplyDelete
  2. Pat I know that you are absolutely right about what you say but with me is was not so much the frequency as the frustration I was having over my guilt and stress over many things all at once. We are still talking which is good....thanks as always for your support!

    ReplyDelete
  3. So now you are into the "nuts and bolts" of , "The Arrangement"...the 'agreement', the "deal".

    Yes. Talking is important. Open and honest communication is crucial, and yet as is often noted, talk is cheap. Actions are what counts and they matter much, much more than words.

    I am really happy for both you and N, that you are at least trying to understand each others needs and to see if these needs might not be mutual. I think that it is important that the one major factor, the proverbial "elephant in the room", which must not be ignored, or swept under the rug, or put off into a "wait and see" mode is a most difficult question which absolutely must, be addressed.

    This "elephant" is the question as to whether you are actually transsexual or transgendered. Only you can answer that. There is no middle ground, no blurring or spectrums involved. Either you are a woman and must do what is necessary to survive as a woman, or you are not.

    I know that this is the third rail around here, with the potential to spark heated and essentially useless debate, but you need to understand that there is a difference. Yes there are hundreds of thousands of men, (maybe millions), who exist and live as women, or maybe part-time women. But these 'trans'-women are not women. They are men, much like yourself, doing what they must do, to cope with or deal with their gender dysphoria.

    I see nothing 'wrong' with these people and I applaud their efforts at recognition and equal protection under the law. The reason that I emphasize this distinction so strongly is that the ultimate outcomes will be different...radically different. This is what must be clear in your minds as you both progress through this most difficult of processes.

    I will again recommend to both you and especially to N that your review the following links with special attention to the Type IV TS in Benjamin's work, (First Link), and the "Choice" and "The Wife" in the second link.

    http://tgmeds.org.uk/downs/phenomenon.pdf

    http://tgchatroom.com/wiki/index.php/So_You_Want_To_Be_a_T-Girl_(Chapter_1)#The_Choice

    As always,

    My best to you both

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks AQV. I would be very happy with the moniker transgender or male disphoric. Its not a perfect scenario and as long as I manage my disphoria I can try and live like I do now. I'm done with the heavy analysis now so don't worry I won't argue the finer points anymore. I just want peace and to try to find a way to make it work between N and I while at the same time not letting my pink fog delude into a drastic mistake.I have thought at times I might fit benjamin's type IV transsexual and have read the entire book. I will review the other links as well

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have always considered the Type IV TS to be the most troubled. After all, for the Type's I-III 'dressing' seems to provide sufficient relief if the issues of guilt and shame can be dealt with.

    On the other hand, for the Types V and VI, as difficult as it is, transition, seems almost inevitable. In other words, the path appears more apparent.

    The Type IV however, seems constantly torn, with no clear path. Having followed your experience, my feelings on this have "evolved'. I can now see the advantage of actually having a choice. Given your current state in life, teen-age children, a good career, and an understanding partner, almost any amount of struggle might well be worth the effort.

    Well done. Now, just make/let it work.

    AQV

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am doing my very best but every day there is some struggle involved. I am learning to deal with the waves of disphoria and feed them with my cross gender expression as best as I can. I always remind myself that I was coming from a worse place before and that helps me. Plus I am not convinced that for a type IV (if that is indeed what I am) then you are somewhat stuck in the middle where maybe a change would be unwelcome in other ways. Perhaps better then devil you know in this case...

    ReplyDelete
  7. Exactly! "The devil, you know".

    ReplyDelete

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