Author Topic: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric  (Read 3331 times)

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Offline Sno

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #20 on: March 01, 2017, 04:50:29 am »
An interesting question, as two years ago, I would have not identified as trans, or even understood what dysphoria is.

 It's taken a lot of self examination to understand since that I get socially dysphoric. However, I never had until I I started reading up, words for my perpetual hatred of my genitals and my 24/7 awareness that they are there; in fact I can clearly remember a conversation with my partner about my awareness, because I asked her if that was normal. Her answer then, No. I now know why.

That awareness is there every day, a continuous annoyance. Prior to my realisation that I was, in fact, somewhere in this rainbow blend, it was just that, an annoyance - I now know what that actually is, and my dysphoria and I talk each day - doing so has helped lessen the sheer irritation.

I can see there being the possibility of not understanding dysphoria, or not having insight to be able to put two and two together, and yet being a part of a transgender group - whether we like it or not, our subconscious mind probably keeps us going back because we are in a group that understands, even if we don't understand ourselves...

Sno

Offline Raell

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #21 on: March 01, 2017, 06:15:19 am »
Concepts don't exist in human minds unless they have the language for them.

Before I was aware of gender variance, trans issues, etc., I simply chose other labels for my discomfort, or blamed my upbringing.

Examples:
I didn't like to dress up or wear make up because my parents ignored me and fussed over my curly-haired sister.

I had little interest in dating men because I was raised abroad and wasn't familiar with US courting rituals.

I was rowdy and outdoorsy because my two brothers made me an honorary boy.

I was always angry because my parents didn't accept me.

I constantly fought depression, because of my parents' rejection as well, etc.

It wasn't until I realized I'm a partial transmale that could see that factor alone could account for all the other things, including being at least partly the reason for my parents' baffled rejection of me.

I couldn't explain why I avoided looking in the mirror or at photos and was horrified and ashamed to see myself unclothed, or why being called a "girl" or by my given name, caused a flash of outraged anger I had to quickly suppress. I simply ignored it and coped as well as I could by avoiding whatever caused the discomfort.

Denial is actually a useful adaptive mechanism. It isn't until we get on the right track gender-wise, that we can see the previously mislabeled anger, depression, lack of social skills, self-hate, body bashing, or whatever the problems were for what they are..gender dysphonia.

Offline WolfNightV4X1

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #22 on: March 01, 2017, 07:00:22 am »
Concepts don't exist in human minds unless they have the language for them.

Before I was aware of gender variance, trans issues, etc., I simply chose other labels for my discomfort, or blamed my upbringing.


Definitely agree, I think you sort of know youre trans beforehand but dont realize it until people rally and give the combined feelings you have a name, realizing that it isnt just you and others are like that too.

Before knowing that the label "tomboy" stuck, even though i didnt much like the word itself it was the closest fitting concept to what I was



Offline Charlie Nicki

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #23 on: April 17, 2017, 02:23:34 pm »
Ever have someone ask you, Whats wrong, why are you feeling so bad? and you are unable to answer with certainty?

Due to the persistently stigmatized and even hated and marginalized minority status of being a transgender person it seems little wonder we might develop gender dysphoria.  Having a dysphoric feeling is, as our dictionary notes, a generalized sense or feeling.  Therefore being aware of this feeling of generalized unease and dissatisfaction is in itself a break through for many of us.

Wow this is definitely me. Having mood changes for no apparent reason, being generally bored with my life, getting upset and angry for the smallest things, I always felt it was just part of who I am and that I was destined to feel bored and apathetic towards life for the rest of my existence...But I then started connecting the dots and realizing this might be linked to my gender identity.

Offline Charlie Nicki

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #24 on: April 17, 2017, 02:31:06 pm »

Dyshoria to me was just discomfort, nothing extreme like suicidal tendencies or depression, but a lot of the times a deepset feeling of apathy and resentment, of not caring all that much and trying to find ways to care about myself even though I knew I was attractive.

That's exactly how I feel. I'm "ok" with being a guy but not happy about it. And despite having a fairly successful love life and career, I'm still very apathetic and bored at everything. Thinking about being a woman is what brings me joy and takes me out of my reality to a happy place. Right now it feels like I am living, and always have lived, at a 40 or 50% when I could be living at a 100% or 120% but I know that staying like this it'll never happen.

Offline RobynD

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #25 on: April 17, 2017, 02:53:50 pm »
That's exactly how I feel. I'm "ok" with being a guy but not happy about it. And despite having a fairly successful love life and career, I'm still very apathetic and bored at everything. Thinking about being a woman is what brings me joy and takes me out of my reality to a happy place. Right now it feels like I am living, and always have lived, at a 40 or 50% when I could be living at a 100% or 120% but I know that staying like this it'll never happen.

And i identify with this except the ok with being a guy part. Largely social dysphoria and only partially physical dysphoria led to the point of thinking about suicide often. I was a bored escapist. I had a great life, a spouse i love dearly, children, traveled the world, career etc. and i was feeling like "well this is all there is, it is only downhill from here. Living as a feminine guy didn't alleviate it enough.

I'm so glad i am still here though because i got to experience life as the real me. I have new friends and a new relationship that i love. My wife notices the level of happiness change too. There has been a price but it has been worth it. When i look back now i realized i was not living life fully.

Online The Flying Lemur

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #26 on: April 19, 2017, 11:42:01 pm »
I always knew I was dysphoric, but I thought that if I did all the right things, the feeling would go away.  Like Raell, I thought that the "real" reason I hated being female was that I had a hard childhood.  If only I "dealt with" my abuse issues, my abandonment issues, my dissociative issues, and my everything-but-the-kitchen-sink issues, I would at last become happy being a woman.  Besides, transitioning sounded scary and like an awful lot of work.  I told myself that I could settle for life as a female. 

Then eventually I ran out of issues to deal with, and I still hated having boobs and a period and everything that goes with those things.  One day I just sort of woke up and said, "I am ****ing done with this."  And it feels great to confront the issue head on.  I didn't realize just how much dysphoria I had until I started actively looking for it.  It's sort of like vaguely wondering why your house has so little space, and then coming to realize that it's because you've been sharing it with a herd of elephants.  Dysphoria was everywhere.  I feel a great deal better now that I've begun the process of "evicting the elephants."   
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Offline Daniellekai

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #27 on: May 06, 2017, 02:45:34 am »
I didn't think I was dysphoric, but I absolutely was, am... I think ignoring it is a coping mechanism, and a side effect of using that is you end up not realizing it's there until you acknowledge it again, it still affects your life negatively, you just put your hands on your ears and start humming loudly. I'm sure there are some who are really not dysphoric though, just worth mentioning that I originally said I wasn't.



Offline SophieD

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #28 on: May 06, 2017, 03:46:00 am »
I always felt that something was wrong with me, but it was only after beginning HRT and the process of transition that I understood that this feeling was gender dysphoria.  It's become clear because the dysphoric feelings stopped, and I can see the beast for what it was.  It wasn't me at all.

This is something simple in hindsight, but some years of therapy to deal with outbreaks of depression never brought the underlying issue into view.  I hope that there is more understanding and awareness of gender dysphoria now, so those affected can find solutions more easily.

I still look at this in wonder that a problem that seemed so complex and difficult was in the end so simple.  I'm grateful for that.  I don't know that I ever would have gotten here without the benefit of HRT; getting the hormones right was essential to getting out from under the dysphoria.


Online ElizabethK

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #29 on: May 06, 2017, 07:16:27 am »
Until about 3 years ago I didn't even have the right word... I knew I was different, I knew since about 5 I should have been a girl but the distress only came when I realised that I was actually turning into a proper guy at about age 10, I thought fantastic now I will be like all the other guys...about 6 months later I knew that my mind was not going to change like my body had...my first active suicide attempt was not long after....I felt I was doomed to a life of hell. Over the years I found various ways to cope and had a guardian angel on my shoulder looking out for me at times I am sure...but here I finally am later in life and the noise in my head is considerably less than it ever has been and since I started lived fulltime as myself...My Dysphoria has lessened heaps...I still have a couple of things I want to sort out.... but on the whole loving my life.

Liz
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Offline VeronicaLynn

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #30 on: May 06, 2017, 08:25:57 am »
I agree ignoring it is a coping mechanism.

I used to think I was not dysphoric because I was never quite suicidal. Alcohol has been my main coping mechanism, and if I felt really bad for whatever reason, I would just drink until I felt better or passed out. Yeah, that can kill me, but it hasn't so far, and was never the goal.

Throwing myself into my work or school was the other big one, and can be a huge distraction.

These are both similar to ignoring it.

For me at least, I am often dysphoric if I am thinking about gender, and not if I am thinking about other things. I'm not sure not thinking about it at all is good, but also spending the whole day thinking about is not good either. I'd say my better days have some amount of balance.





Offline JoanneB

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #31 on: May 06, 2017, 01:49:52 pm »
Wondering what you guys & girls think about this.

I usually have trouble regarding the experiences of people who are not so dysphoric.
I mean, it´s fine. Not having a lot of dysphoria is good, I think. Of course dysphoria isn´t this static phenomenon either; it tends to shift over time, sometimes it´s worse than others.

I don´t know if it´s jealousy (to think that others may be more capable of dealing with their bodies), or the fact that it makes me uncomfortable that they do accept their body more. Their comfort with their body makes me more uncomfortable because on some level it makes me feel as if I should be comfortable with it too.

I know that this isn´t true. I also know that some people feel guilty that they do not experience as much dysphoria as others, as if it somehow diminished their "transgender-ness". Which is not true, either.

How do you experience this?
Often I think how blessed I am since I (usually) don't have the various flavors of off the chart dysphoria the newbies to the TG Support group I belong to express during their first meetings. Like as in total broken, in tears, their lives blowing up. etc..

Many times I feel jealous, wishing I knew for sure one way or another which path is best. Here I am some 8 years later still hanging in there. Still holding valuable pieces of my life together. Still having those days when I might break down into tears myself. Many times thinking back to same scared newbies that after a few months to maybe a year going full time.
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Online Laurie

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #32 on: May 06, 2017, 01:54:10 pm »
I've had a number of conversations with folks who both cross-dress and claim to be non-dysphoric.  Things get interesting when I ask them about why or how often they cross-dress.  The answer is often 'I need to', or 'I feel better when I do', and when talking about how often, it's often driven by a sensation of need or longing.  That sounds awfully familiar...

They are not non-dysphoric, in my opinion, although they are of course welcome to their own opinion and may be more comfortable with denial.  I suspect that dysphoria comes in a range of intensities, and rather than being non-dysphoric, is just fairly mild with some folks who still land under the transgender umbrella.
Ever have someone ask you, Whats wrong, why are you feeling so bad? and you are unable to answer with certainty?

 I simply didn't know how hard and how well I had been repressing, coping and acting like i should.  I invested big time in staying busy and not reflecting on the constant sense that something is so wrong with me.  I crossdressed for years and forgot about it.  I did not accept myself as trans until I had the time and safety in retirement to work through the dysphoria and determine the real source.  Only then did it become gender dysphoria for me.

My career was in anesthesia and I understand pain.  Our pain and suffering can be quite real without our being able to accurately locate or diagnose the cause.

  I believe that both Michelle_P and Tessa.James have nailed my experience with dysphoria. I was exactly like Michelle postulated I crossdressed because I needed to and when the need arose. And it did make me feel better. I found myself binging on crossdressing doing it every chance I got and frequently in full regalia makeup, jewelry wig etc. I'd do this for days and weeks at a time then put it away until the next time I had to do it. I say had because it was a compulsion for me. Sometimes i could be satisfied with just an article or two of clothing, but usually it hit me in waves. I used to feel guilty about it when I was younger but over time I accepted it as part of me something I needed to do. That however did not lessen the guilt or shame of doing it. It was wrong and perverted! I was a man!, and men don't do such thing of have such feelings. Crossdressing and all it's baggage caused me many problems in my life. Or rather, as I understand it now gender dysphoria did.

  Tessa also describes me well. I knew something was wrong with me for a longtime and didn't know what. I wished I was a girl so I could dress as I wanted to dress, so I could have long pretty hair and wear makeup up, so I could feel pretty and be okay with these desires. Cross dressing helped with those feelings. For short periods in time I could be a woman and feel pretty and be myself. I loved it and I hated it. I convinced myself that crossdressing was enough. But if it was why did I feel so bad about indulging in it and why did I still feel like there was something missing?

   It wasn't until I was surfing thing on the internet late last year that I came across information the talked about gender dysphoria. The more I read about it the more I felt it fit myself. My browsing the subject also led me to information on HRT and the information of how to obtain it with little to no chance of getting into trouble for obtaining them without a prescription. I intuitively knew this was the right thing for me to do. The rest is history. One thing led to another and I stopped breaking the law in favor of obtaining my HRT under a doctor's care and getting therapy for my heretofore unknown but very real gender dysphoria.  I like to think it was mild for me but as Michelle put it I may have just been in denial of the truth.

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Offline Clara Kay

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #33 on: May 06, 2017, 02:47:27 pm »
My gender dysphoria (GD) had three components:

1) Testosterone toxicity.  A female brain on T is not pleasant.

2) Body dysphoria.  A female brain inside a male body is not pleasant.

3) Gender expression.  A female brain deprived of feminine expression is (you guessed it) not pleasant.

HRT took care of #1.
FFS, BA, GRS took care of #2.
Living an authentic life took care of #3.

I'm cured!   :)

Offline Charlie Nicki

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #34 on: May 08, 2017, 11:13:34 am »
My gender dysphoria (GD) had three components:

1) Testosterone toxicity.  A female brain on T is not pleasant.

2) Body dysphoria.  A female brain inside a male body is not pleasant.

3) Gender expression.  A female brain deprived of feminine expression is (you guessed it) not pleasant.

HRT took care of #1.
FFS, BA, GRS took care of #2.
Living an authentic life took care of #3.

I'm cured!   :)

I want to be able to say this so bad!

Offline KatieByrne

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #35 on: May 19, 2017, 06:27:19 pm »
Yeah i know what you mean to a degree.

Like the Dysphoria for me pre-transition was always overwhelming. I basically couldn't live ANY kind of life at all before transitioning.

Lately i've met a few transgender individuals who are essentially "not too fussed" about transitioning. Which on balance is probably a good thing for them. I mean if they have the strength to simply not let it bother them well then its going to save them a lot of pain, rejection and expense. But i cant help comparing their level of dysphoria to that i went through and well part of me does question how genuine their feelings are.

It's a terrible thought i know, to question someone else's transgender validity but I'd be lying  if i said the thought had never crossed my mind while talking to them..

I know logically that trans individuals suffer from varying degrees of dysphoria so it should be no surprise to have finally met some with only mild degrees of dysphoria but i also think its human nature to compare instances of phenomena to past examples of the same phenomena and the only example of gender dysphoria i am intimately familiar with is my own so that i guess will always be the baseline by which the dysphoria of others is judged.

Offline Clara Kay

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #36 on: May 19, 2017, 08:17:05 pm »
To say that some people are more trans than others is cruisin' for a bruisin', so I'm sticking my neck out here. 

The transgender umbrella includes a wide range of individuals who, in one way or another, are gender nonconforming vis-a-vis their birth assigned gender.  The most recent study by the Williams Institute put the number of adults who self-identify as 'transgender' at 1.4 million, but we get no insight into what being transgender means to these people.

But another study by Benjamin Harris of the U.S. Census Bureau analyzed 2010 Census data against the US Social Security Administration database and found that only about 90,000 individuals have transitioned as far as changing their gender code and/or gendered name, important steps for transsexual men and women who sooner or later transition.  Granted not all transsexual men and women change their official government documentation, but even doubling that number would indicate that a minority of trans-identifying people transition to live as the opposite sex. 

That tells me that the vast majority of transgender individuals are not experiencing gender dysphoria at a level that leads to full gender transition.   Why would anyone transition if there was another less debilitating, disruptive, stigmatizing, and difficult option?   I do believe that as transgender people become more accepted within society, when the costs to transition, both personal and financial, lessen, more and more will chose to take the jump.  But, to assume that all transgender people are cut from the same cloth, so to speak, as regards the source and strength of their transgender identity, doesn't make sense in my experience. 

Does that mean that some transgender people are more trans than others based on their level of GD?  Sounds like a case of comparing apples to oranges because both are labelled fruit.

Offline Wendywishes

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #37 on: May 20, 2017, 02:17:40 pm »
That's exactly how I feel. I'm "ok" with being a guy but not happy about it. And despite having a fairly successful love life and career, I'm still very apathetic and bored at everything. Thinking about being a woman is what brings me joy and takes me out of my reality to a happy place. Right now it feels like I am living, and always have lived, at a 40 or 50% when I could be living at a 100% or 120% but I know that staying like this it'll never happen.
Charlie Nicki, you have neatly expressed exactly my situation as well for the last 25 years!

To say that some people are more trans than others is cruisin' for a bruisin', so I'm sticking my neck out here. 

The transgender umbrella includes a wide range of individuals who, in one way or another, are gender nonconforming vis-a-vis their birth assigned gender.  The most recent study by the Williams Institute put the number of adults who self-identify as 'transgender' at 1.4 million, but we get no insight into what being transgender means to these people.

But another study by Benjamin Harris of the U.S. Census Bureau analyzed 2010 Census data against the US Social Security Administration database and found that only about 90,000 individuals have transitioned as far as changing their gender code and/or gendered name, important steps for transsexual men and women who sooner or later transition.  Granted not all transsexual men and women change their official government documentation, but even doubling that number would indicate that a minority of trans-identifying people transition to live as the opposite sex. 

That tells me that the vast majority of transgender individuals are not experiencing gender dysphoria at a level that leads to full gender transition.   Why would anyone transition if there was another less debilitating, disruptive, stigmatizing, and difficult option?   I do believe that as transgender people become more accepted within society, when the costs to transition, both personal and financial, lessen, more and more will chose to take the jump.  But, to assume that all transgender people are cut from the same cloth, so to speak, as regards the source and strength of their transgender identity, doesn't make sense in my experience. 

Does that mean that some transgender people are more trans than others based on their level of GD?  Sounds like a case of comparing apples to oranges because both are labelled fruit.

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Offline Transdude

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #38 on: May 20, 2017, 04:12:14 pm »
I had really bad dysphoria. The 2 main things for me were my chest and face. I had a really feminine and pretty face. Didn't matter how hard I tried to look masculine. I had a buzz cut for a while and people still would tell me how pretty I was. The worst was when dudes would tell me I was hot. It was too much and I couldn't deal. After starting T I really bulked up. Then I got top surgery and FMS. (Any dudes in Florida needing a good surgeon check out Dr. Sassani. He does excellent work. )  I still have dysphoria but nothing like I used to.
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Offline Clara Kay

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Re: Dysphoric vs Non-dysphoric
« Reply #39 on: May 20, 2017, 04:25:18 pm »
I had really bad dysphoria. The 2 main things for me were my chest and face. I had a really feminine and pretty face. Didn't matter how hard I tried to look masculine. I had a buzz cut for a while and people still would tell me how pretty I was. The worst was when dudes would tell me I was hot. It was too much and I couldn't deal. After starting T I really bulked up. Then I got top surgery and FMS. (Any dudes in Florida needing a good surgeon check out Dr. Sassani. He does excellent work. )  I still have dysphoria but nothing like I used to.

The experience of gender dysphoria is driven home to me whenever I read a post like yours, Transdude.  For you to have so disliked something that I so wanted to have, and vice versa speaks to the power of gender identity like nothing else can.

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