Author Topic: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?  (Read 2505 times)

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Offline Janes Groove

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #40 on: June 26, 2017, 12:01:44 pm »
It is around other trans people that know my story where I should find a sense of commonality or solidarity that I feel the odd one out.

You would think.  But it's very human I think to always be "looking out for the mutant."  I have those same feelings due to being older than most trans women.  Also, I identified as gay before coming out as trans.  That makes me an outlier in many ways.  I never married. Have no kids. Don't live in suburbia. Was denied the privilege to serve in the military because of my same sex attraction deal.

Also, I'm willing to bet that about 90% of the people in any given trans support group meeting are having similiar feelings.  It's hard wired into us at this point, I think.

Also, not all support groups are created equal.  I know this from experience.

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Came out, started living full time - Thanksgiving 2015
Started HRT - 5-27-2016

Estrogen HRT = the surprising arrival of a rainbow within me.

Offline Lisa_K

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #41 on: June 26, 2017, 01:51:02 pm »
Wow, that puts you among the first to be treated under the Benjamin Protocols.

Ummm, no. It wasn't until 1972 when I was 17 that I ever saw a doctor that even knew what trans was, at least as far as I know? A lot of stuff was kept from me and not talked about. All my parents ever told me when I got older was that they were told that I was "probably gay". By the time I was 12, I was smart enough to not say a darn thing to these "talk doctors" fearing I'd be taken from my parents and put in a mental hospital. My first official psychiatric diagnosis that mattered (that I'm aware of) was before the term gender dysphoria even came into use and my parents were told I "had" primary transsexualism. I think the whole primary/secondary thing may have come after the Benjamin scale or was adjunct to it? Not sure how that went but I do know there was no widespread acceptance of a standard.

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Unfortunately, there really aren't many peers for you to find support with.

It's not that I need "support". All of this happened a very long time ago and is water under the bridge at this point. It's just the feeling of being such a unique minority and that there are so few like me that plays with my mind a bit sometimes. Seeing the stories we see today about pre-pubescent children that transition is presented as a new phenomenon. Well, I'm here to tell you the ability to transition is maybe new but kids that struggled just as hard with gender dysphoria, depression, anxiety and suicidal ideation is not. If it were not for the compassion and understanding of my nature by my folks, if they had not let me grow out my hair after the 2nd grade and let me have dolls and Barbies and do "girl stuff", I would have not have made it to adolescence. There was no hiding for me - I had always been obvious.
 
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I am probably just a few years older than you.  I had the strong urge to be feminine in my youth, and expressed it a few times.  Not a good move in a private religious school in the early 1960s, this led to a childhood that was fairly abusive even by 1960s standards.  I eventually 'got caught' at age 15, and was 'treated' and 'cured' by hormone therapy and counseling.

This sounds terrible. My mother in particular, was pretty progressive, open-minded and intuitive into my nature and the step-dad that came into my life when I was 9 was a retired Lutheran pastor and at the time a practicing psychologist so who I was and the way I was while not encouraged, wasn't suppressed either. I couldn't be. Neither of my folks would have stood for "corrective" therapies and that's how throughout the last half of the 1960's and into the 70's I was able to avoid these things. They saw no need to change me and most of the professional support I did have was for living in a world where people didn't understand and for the social problems caused by that.

_________________________________

But it's very human I think to always be "looking out for the mutant."...

When you are a "mutant" I think it's also human nature to seek out other mutants of your kind, right? There's now plenty of us (trans youth) out there, just dang very few that are even close to my age. (I'm 62½)

Offline Janes Groove

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #42 on: June 26, 2017, 03:20:31 pm »
Apologies. Merely poetic license.
Assigned Male at Birth - 1958
Came out, started living full time - Thanksgiving 2015
Started HRT - 5-27-2016

Estrogen HRT = the surprising arrival of a rainbow within me.

Offline Lisa_K

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #43 on: June 26, 2017, 03:22:58 pm »
Apologies. Merely poetic license.

Apologies for what? I fully accept my mutantness!  :D

Offline Janes Groove

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #44 on: June 26, 2017, 03:36:07 pm »
Wonderful. :)

This BTW is what I was getting at.
Assigned Male at Birth - 1958
Came out, started living full time - Thanksgiving 2015
Started HRT - 5-27-2016

Estrogen HRT = the surprising arrival of a rainbow within me.

Offline Ryuichi13

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #45 on: June 26, 2017, 05:44:34 pm »
I would definitely say "YES!" 

Before I started going to my local trans adult group, I felt like I was the only FTM, EVER.  After not only seeing other FTMs, but ones  further along the journey I wanted to take, I no longer felt like the only one.  I thought to myself, "they GET it, they UNDERSTAND!" 

And let me tell you, after 54 & 1/2 years of thinking I was alone, in many ways it was like coming home. 

So yes, if there is a local group/club/etc near you, I highly encourage you to go!

Ryuichi

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Offline Viktor

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #46 on: June 27, 2017, 02:31:44 am »
I would say yes and no.

It's good to experience the realization physically and emotionally (opposed to just logically) that you are not the only one. Or that others can achieve the "goals" set by transition.

On the other hand, it also drives home no matter how many people you meet, you still have to walk the path alone. And you still have those doubts about meeting your own goals, especially if you are not as lucky in the potential passing dept. as these other people. Sometimes seeing that makes people more dysphoric

Offline elkie-t

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Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #47 on: June 28, 2017, 08:08:19 am »
Hi - just wondering if anyone thinks it was particularly helpful in their journey to meet face to face with someone or others who was feeling and going through the same thing? I am sort of afraid to meet anyone too close to home! Is or has that been an issue for anyone?
Why would you be afraid to meet anyone who's in the same boat? They won't gossip on your secrets, since they wouldn't want you to share those.

However, generally speaking, meeting other trans-people wasn't particularly helpful either. We met, we chatted for a while, then no one would return any calls or want to meet again. It's like herding cats...

Although I've met Esperanza (mtf ts) and I had a lot of insight about life during transition when your parents don't support you (and about anarchism). I remember you and miss you a lot.

And I've met Tanya (mtf cd) who became a very good friend (willing to go out with you, not ashamed to have you in dress knocking in their front door  at day light or taking me to a local grocery)... I miss your company too

Offline invisiblemonsters

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #48 on: July 04, 2017, 12:31:57 pm »
when i first started to transition, my therapist suggested i go to local support groups. even though i wasn't even on T yet, i was still very far along compared to others in the group. i already had my therapy, i already was on my way to get my hormones, etc. my transition (hormones + surgery) only took me a year. i was very lucky and fortunate to have that but because of that, i felt like an outcast compared to others. i could offer guidance, what i did, etc. but i had no one who was in the same place i was i guess and because of that, support groups didn't really help me. it was nice to see how many people in my community are trans, etc and i wasn't alone, but it didn't help me i don't think and the people in that group were much younger then me (still in highschool while i was 21 - 22 at the time). i even went to a support group for older people (20+) and hoped people would be further along in their transition as i already had surgery and hormones awhile now but they all were still very early in transition, just starting hormones or not on them for long, etc. i realized it became easier for them to transition though as my college gives HRT while i had to do the whole "living as your gender" kind of thing. i met some cool people there but they were open, and very happy about being "trans and proud" while i live stealth, which i guess is also an issue. i don't mind being friends with people who are open and what ever else as i do not shy away from helping my community but something was just..off. maybe our personalities just didn't mesh, who knows but i know i just felt like i didn't belong.

either way, i know it can help a lot and i saw how it helped a lot of people when i heard people (especially high school aged kids) talking about getting bullied in the group sessions. highschool is hard, life is hard and those kinds of things i guess help knowing others are going through it or have went through it and seeing others come out on top gives us all a little hope i guess. i also know when i first started to transition, having those resources from others who have went through it would have helped like what doctors would do HRT, etc. it was a trial and error for me, but i know me being through it is helpful for others who are just starting out but it doesn't change the fact it was a lonely road for me not having people i could talk to really but i am glad i could make it easier for others, too.

Offline Charlie Nicki

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #49 on: July 10, 2017, 10:56:23 am »
I definitely think it helps, especially if it's someone who is in a place similar of the process as you are. I've met a couple of trans girls through my therapist.

Offline jill610

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #50 on: July 10, 2017, 02:20:11 pm »
I think it definitely helps. I always felt alone, and while I discovered this site in 2010 sometime, knowing real air breathing humans going through similar struggles would have been invaluable.

In 2003 I was seeing a therapist and was on the cusp of hrt. I got hurt badly in a sporting accident, and ended up giving up. I got married. Had children. Came out to my wife this past weekend because I can no longer live this way. Had I gotten into a group back in 2003 I would have been living as myself for fifteen years now. I hear the complaints and cautions, but I think a lot of these groups are pretty well vetted before they let someone in. The group I m in provided a lot of support and advice for how to communicate with my spouse and specific things that did not work for them in the past. Invaluable to me.

Now as I start my own transition, I look forward to the sounding board and support support structure, and advice on local resources. Sites like this are awesome, but human contact is invaluable!


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Offline Nora Kayte

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #51 on: August 02, 2017, 06:38:41 pm »
I would love to meat others from Susan's. But I am shy. I have asked if there were others in socal. But never get responses. And when I check to see if they are close to me I am too chicken to ask. I am a great friend to have. But it is just impossible for me to meet people. Because I am shy I don't do well in the beginning. But once you get to know me I am loyal to a fault. A bit of an ass once you get to know me. But I'd be boring otherwise.


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Offline elkie-t

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #52 on: August 02, 2017, 07:25:14 pm »
I would love to meat others from Susan's. But I am shy. I have asked if there were others in socal. But never get responses. And when I check to see if they are close to me I am too chicken to ask. I am a great friend to have. But it is just impossible for me to meet people. Because I am shy I don't do well in the beginning. But once you get to know me I am loyal to a fault. A bit of an ass once you get to know me. But I'd be boring otherwise.


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Oh yeah, there are plenty there (after all, it's quite a big village - LA). Just go around West Hollywood, or ... well, I forgot the popular places, but there were plenty girls there when I was around.

Offline Jennagirl

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #53 on: August 31, 2017, 10:40:37 am »
I think it definitely helps. I always felt alone, and while I discovered this site in 2010 sometime, knowing real air breathing humans going through similar struggles would have been invaluable.

In 2003 I was seeing a therapist and was on the cusp of hrt. I got hurt badly in a sporting accident, and ended up giving up. I got married. Had children. Came out to my wife this past weekend because I can no longer live this way. Had I gotten into a group back in 2003 I would have been living as myself for fifteen years now. I hear the complaints and cautions, but I think a lot of these groups are pretty well vetted before they let someone in. The group I m in provided a lot of support and advice for how to communicate with my spouse and specific things that did not work for them in the past. Invaluable to me.

Now as I start my own transition, I look forward to the sounding board and support support structure, and advice on local resources. Sites like this are awesome, but human contact is invaluable!


Jill, I am also outside the Philadelphia area. I am way behind you in my journey but I saw your post about a local support group. I have been looking for one close and would love to know more about your group.

Thanks so much!




Offline jill610

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Re: Does it help to meet face to face others going through this struggle?
« Reply #54 on: August 31, 2017, 10:44:43 am »
Jill, I am also outside the Philadelphia area. I am way behind you in my journey but I saw your post about a local support group. I have been looking for one close and would love to know more about your group.

Thanks so much!
I am really not very far along, just started hormones a week ago. But have been in groups on and off for a while. Send me a private message and I’ll send you the contact. There’s a few in the area. The philly trans health conference is next week at the Mazzoni Center 9/7-9 so that might be good to check out too.

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