Author Topic: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?  (Read 1095 times)

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Offline Denni

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Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« on: February 18, 2018, 10:37:13 am »
I am starting this thread after many months of personal reflection and many conflicting thoughts during these months.
What finally triggered it was after reading a thread started by "Happy Moni" on the subject of what was the tipping point for someone to transition. First of all Moni is a very dear friend, we have a friendship that was begun on this website and we have been there for each other through good times and bad times helping one another through this difficult life of being transgender. She has been there for me and I for her and I know that I would not be the person I am now without that help.

Transitioning can be a word with many meanings and levels within the transgender community. I like many have had a "tipping point" in my acceptance of being transgender and whether to transition or not. There is no question that I am transgender as I have accepted myself as such  almost three years ago after fighting the trans beast for all of my life starting at age 5 to where i am now as a senior citizen, that was my first "tipping point". My second " tipping point" was for the last eighteen months I have been on HRT,  another level of transitioning and acceptance of being a transgender woman. I also realize that i will never realize that next step of transitioning and accept that fact. The reasons are many, none more so than the hurt it would bring to my kids and grandkids. I have lived most of my life, my kids are in the middle of theirs, and my grandkids just starting their's.

Everyone makes sacrafices during their levels of transtion, from losing family, jobs, and friendships when fully transtioning, to the sacrafice of knowing that the final "tipping point" will never be realized. Moni, and another dear friend Tia Ann have just had GCS and I am so happy for them that they have been able to realize that next step in their transition. Is the sacrafice of fully transitioning any greater than those who do not, I cannot answer that, I do know that there are times when it can be very difficult with what I have chosen.

I have started this thread for the simple fact that there does not seem to be many like myself in that there seems to be a lack of postings addressing this subject. Hence the reason for the subject matter of feeling like the proverbail "red headed step child". I know one thing, and that is I am a transgender woman and I embrace that, fully transitioned or not.

Hugs




Offline bobbisue

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2018, 11:11:08 am »
     Denni you have my upmost respect you have taken a path that is as difficult as transitioning if not more so you have done this for love of your family it is hard to think of a greater expression of you love than this though they will never know of it
     My tipping point was just the opposite I was just coming to terms with my being transgender when my oldest grandchild came out as a transman this made remaining in the closet a no go and I came out far before I knew if I would transition or how far I would go.I cannot begin to express how much I support your choice this is an act of true love
 
     bobbiesue :)
[ gotta be me everyone else is taken ]
started HRT june 16 2017              
Out to all my family Oct 21 2017 no rejections
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Online Jessica

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2018, 11:19:29 am »
Hi Denni, I do understand your feeling of being a RHSC.  My goals are in the minority from many here and actually experienced it in my face at a group therapy meeting.  I was told that I was foolish in not wanting to pursue SRS.   I am at a point in my life where the final step wouldn’t have as much impact as if I was younger.  I am gender fluid, NB ....... somewhere in between it all, but closer to the feminine side.  From HRT I’m achieving a more balanced view and am able to express that by subtle and sometimes more direct changes in appearance and mannerisms.  I have experienced being a woman in public and know I am comfortable doing so.  I can feel I’m a woman w/o having to go to the extremes, though time will tell..... maybe there will be another ”Moni” tipping point for myself that I haven’t reached.

Hugs, Jessica

... it's like running a car on ethanol when it's supposed to take gasoline... it'll work, but it's eventually gonna break down until you put it on the proper fuel.

Offline HappyMoni

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2018, 11:40:45 am »
Oh my gosh, Denni, I am so glad you started this thread. I started the tipping point thread to try to share experiences with people who are more visible in their transition like my own. I think it is very important that you speak  to those folks with similar experience to yours. I think on more than one occasion, I have expressed to you the admiration I have for you. I have said that I don't have the strength to do things the way you have. I truly believe that. Our  transitions are different but neither is of any less value than the other.  I don't see those who can't or don't visibly transition as any less. I do think it is invaluable to have someone on this site facilitating the conversation. I am so proud of you for starting that dialog. I will respect the dialog much as the significant other area is respected. I hope it is contributed to by others with the idea that not everyone's journey is a visual 'out' transition.
I do like the title of the thread. I guess I should change the thread I started to the "Grey Headed Step Child." lol
Love you,
Moni
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HRT June 11, 2015. (new birthday) - FFS in late June 2016. (Dr. _____=Ugh!) - Full time June 18, 2016 (Yeah! finally) - GCS June 27, 2017. (McGinn=Yeah!) - Under Eye repair from FFS 8/17/17 - Nose surgery-November 20, 2017 (Dr. Papel=Yeah) - Hair Transplant on June 21, 2018 (Dr. Cooley-yeah) - Breast Augmentation on July 10, 2018 (Dr. Basner in Baltimore) - Removed bad scarring from FFS surgery near ears and hairline in August, 2018 (Dr. Papel) -Sept. 2018, starting a skin regiment on face with Retin A

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2018, 01:37:40 pm »
There are a lot of trans people who for various reasons do not choose to medically/and or socially transition, so you are not alone. 

Offline Denni

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2018, 04:57:28 pm »
My hope is that this thread will help with the frustration that can be felt by some in our community and not having a source for their thoughts with not having the option of fully transitioning creating that frustration. We are all as one, no matter what that stage of transition is within our community and need to be there for each other. Please feel free to add to this thread to keep it alive, I promise that I will uphold my end and keep it moving so you are stuck with me. The lack of being able to communicate creates frustration, lets help each other and eliminate that frustration. Hugs

Offline Sno

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2018, 05:10:22 pm »
It’s tricky tbh, for some there is an urgency behind the need to transition that cannot be denied, and the personal transformation externally as a journey has lots of visible highs and lows with questions asked as a consequence.

It means the quieter conversations, and those who are coping, or doubting or struggling to accept, or the miriad of other reasons for remaining with the status quo, appear to be diluted in the wall of transition chat that happens.

It’s much like this years Pride parade - my partner suggested we go and have fun, I couldn’t cope with the idea of exposure, the shame of my appearance or the fact that I would be judged against the stereotypical trope. I’ve spent many years hiding in plain sight, to enjoy some kind of acceptance - playing the game of outward conformance.

As has been said, we do this for those around, whether they recognise it or not.

(Hugs) from another in the same boat

Rowan


Offline Anne Blake

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2018, 06:29:36 pm »
Hi Denni,

Thank you for beginning this thread! As I have told you before, I believe that you have so much more strength than I to be able to walk the path you have chosen. My journey is so much easier than yours. I look forward to hearing from many more on this site to help me understand the nature of other directions in transitioning. You have always impressed me with your dedication to family and your integrity in your walk.

May God bless,
Tia Anne

Offline Denni

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #8 on: February 19, 2018, 09:26:49 am »
Well I promised someone that I would keep this thread alive so a promise made is a promise kept. Again my hope is that this thread can be a source for those of us as transwomen, or transmen, that have not taken that final step of transition. My hope is that the frustration that I have felt at times with this web site and almost leaving can be alleviated by having dialogue with one another and knowing that we are not alone in our journey's. Acceptance of oneself starts within and no one knows that better than themselves. Please feel free to add to this thread and to be there for each other. Just a thought , we could become known as "The Redhead Club" lol. Hugs, keep smiling and most of all Laugh!

Offline Jennifer.Diamonds

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2018, 09:43:22 am »
Well I promised someone that I would keep this thread alive so a promise made is a promise kept. Again my hope is that this thread can be a source for those of us as transwomen, or transmen, that have not taken that final step of transition. My hope is that the frustration that I have felt at times with this web site and almost leaving can be alleviated by having dialogue with one another and knowing that we are not alone in our journey's. Acceptance of oneself starts within and no one knows that better than themselves. Please feel free to add to this thread and to be there for each other. Just a thought , we could become known as "The Redhead Club" lol. Hugs, keep smiling and most of all Laugh!

I decided to opt out of fully transitioning. All other steps yes, but not the final one. For my wife. We had a long talk about how far I wanted to go. It ended up that we came to an agreement on the fact that she has needs and I'm the one that should provide it. LOL

Offline VickyS

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2018, 10:46:30 am »
Speaking as an actual 'red headed step-child' and yes it was traumatic!! lol  I would like to thank Denni for posting this and bringing it to our attention.  I'm sure we have all had things assumed when speaking to cis-people about being transgender and in my experience they all seem to assume that everyone who transitions does so all the way and their sexuality which in their minds is linked to gender, is such that the trans individual is then magically attracted to the opposite of their true gender. 

What I find very powerful is that some put their own needs second to that of their family.  That must be incredibly hard to do, but also in a different way, an easy decision.  I both admire and respect that.
Came out to self: mid Oct 17                   Last haircut: 3rd Nov 17       
Came out to wife: 17th Jan 18                 Therapy started: 1st Mar 18
Electrolysis started: 10th Apr 18              Referred to GIC: 16th May 18

Offline anne_indy

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2018, 11:51:04 am »
Dear Denni - thank you for your post. As someone « in process » it is helpful to know the paths others have taken, and the consequences of those paths. My family has been my primary concern in deciding what steps to take, and due to family to family concerns, ceased with HRT a few months ago. I just recently began again, but the family remains my highest concern and what will be best overall for everyone. Sometimes I think that I have come to a clear conclusion of the path forward, and other days I’m not sure. That’s probably true for most people are on similar paths.


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Offline Denni

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #12 on: February 20, 2018, 08:37:11 am »
Speaking as an actual 'red headed step-child' and yes it was traumatic!! lol  I would like to thank Denni for posting this and bringing it to our attention.  I'm sure we have all had things assumed when speaking to cis-people about being transgender and in my experience they all seem to assume that everyone who transitions does so all the way and their sexuality which in their minds is linked to gender, is such that the trans individual is then magically attracted to the opposite of their true gender. 

What I find very powerful is that some put their own needs second to that of their family.  That must be incredibly hard to do, but also in a different way, an easy decision.  I both admire and respect that.

Vicky, you are so right with your statement on how there are so many things assumed in the transgender world by the cis- gender community. If only they would take the time to get educated on the subject or (I can't believe I am writing this, talk to someone who is transgender) this would be a better world for everyone. There is so much ignorance of what being transgender actually is but then again with the political system we are in and with some of the far right religious leaders we have right now it is to be expected sadly.

Thank you for your kind words on my choice of transition, it is as I stated in the opening post. I have lived most of my life, my kids and grandkids have not. My choice is because of them.

Offline Denni

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #13 on: February 20, 2018, 08:45:24 am »
Vicky, thanks for the heads up on "The Red Headed Step Child" comment, as you mentioned it was not meant to be disrespectful but to add a little humor to the subject matter. Truth be told, there were times during my childhood with my father that I felt like that, oh well. By the way, red hair is to me the very pinnacle of hair color on the color chart

Offline Denni

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #14 on: February 20, 2018, 09:08:46 am »
Dear Denni - thank you for your post. As someone « in process » it is helpful to know the paths others have taken, and the consequences of those paths. My family has been my primary concern in deciding what steps to take, and due to family to family concerns, ceased with HRT a few months ago. I just recently began again, but the family remains my highest concern and what will be best overall for everyone. Sometimes I think that I have come to a clear conclusion of the path forward, and other days I’m not sure. That’s probably true for most people are on similar paths.


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Anne, no one ever said that life was going to be easy did they. Life can be difficult enough but being transgender certainly adds to it and the complexities that go with it. The insecurities we experience with HRT use and what that use may lead to in the family unit only lends to that insecurity. Thankfully my wife consented to HRT after many hours of discussion, pain, and tears. The pain that I seen that it caused her only made my decision easier to not cause that same pain to my kids and grandkids. On the plus side the person that I have become with HRT use is a much better person. The anger, bitterness, that were a part of me for so long has been replaced with the ability to laugh at things now I never would have in the past. The emotions that are a part of me now are most welcome. Take care, laugh much, and hugs

Offline Denni

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #15 on: February 20, 2018, 09:22:59 am »
It’s tricky tbh, for some there is an urgency behind the need to transition that cannot be denied, and the personal transformation externally as a journey has lots of visible highs and lows with questions asked as a consequence.

It means the quieter conversations, and those who are coping, or doubting or struggling to accept, or the miriad of other reasons for remaining with the status quo, appear to be diluted in the wall of transition chat that happens.

It’s much like this years Pride parade - my partner suggested we go and have fun, I couldn’t cope with the idea of exposure, the shame of my appearance or the fact that I would be judged against the stereotypical trope. I’ve spent many years hiding in plain sight, to enjoy some kind of acceptance - playing the game of outward conformance.

As has been said, we do this for those around, whether they recognise it or not.

(Hugs) from another in the same boat

Rowan
Rowan,
I have a feeling that if everyone would take a survey that the boat required for all of us would be very large indeed, lol. The sacrfices that we make for our families in not fully transitioning are no different than the sacrafices that others make when they take that step to fully transition. They are all painful and equally shared. HUgs
Denni

Offline BeckyCNJ

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #16 on: February 20, 2018, 09:45:47 am »
Denni,

Another "red-headed step-child" raising their hand here in the back row. Our situations sound very similar both in terms of age and realization of being "different" from a young age. My reasons for not transitioning are also similar.

All that being said, I guess the struggle for us is how to cope with being transgender while not having a full transition to look forward to. Each day I have to ask myself that question. One answer is finding people like you here at Susans that we can chat with and share experiences.

One thing that's been helpful for me in the past year is sharing who I am with a select group of people. My wife has known from before we were married but I only shared this with my daughters and their spouses this past summer. More of my medical caregivers now know, as well. Telling these people has felt very good. I've had positive reactions from all.

I'd like to "come out" to more folks but that is a bit of a sore point for my wife.

I'm happy those of us on this thread are there for each other.

Becky

Offline Anne Blake

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #17 on: February 20, 2018, 11:18:56 am »
Hi Denni,

A couple points with this wonderful thread;

First off, as a transgender woman that has had the blessing and opportunity to live out and openly, I recognize that stories like mine take the spotlight so much of the time. It is great to be able to celebrate when a sister or brother is able to take a big step in their journey.....but, it is probably more important to recognize and celebrate the strength demonstrated by so many here that for one reason or another sacrifice wants/needs of their own for the sake of others. More kudos to you, you are indeed demonstrating a strength greater than mine.

Second, I would love to hear stories or descriptions of how you (the many on Susan's) abide in the grey world of hiding the true you from the world. Many of us place our partners or family is difficult and stressful lifestyles because of our transgender nature. As one that is out, I am probably less aware of how much of a stress I have put my partner in. Can the Red Headed Step Children give us/me tips or insights on being more aware of my partners needs and ways to reign in my "Needs" a bit to ease her pain? Poorly stated but hopefully understood.

Denni and the rest of our Red Headed group, please keep this thread active and vital!

Tia Anne

Offline pamelatransuk

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2018, 05:04:52 am »
I am starting this thread after many months of personal reflection and many conflicting thoughts during these months.
What finally triggered it was after reading a thread started by "Happy Moni" on the subject of what was the tipping point for someone to transition. First of all Moni is a very dear friend, we have a friendship that was begun on this website and we have been there for each other through good times and bad times helping one another through this difficult life of being transgender. She has been there for me and I for her and I know that I would not be the person I am now without that help.

Transitioning can be a word with many meanings and levels within the transgender community. I like many have had a "tipping point" in my acceptance of being transgender and whether to transition or not. There is no question that I am transgender as I have accepted myself as such  almost three years ago after fighting the trans beast for all of my life starting at age 5 to where i am now as a senior citizen, that was my first "tipping point". My second " tipping point" was for the last eighteen months I have been on HRT,  another level of transitioning and acceptance of being a transgender woman. I also realize that i will never realize that next step of transitioning and accept that fact.

Thank you Denni for initiating this thread and debate.

I have also known since I was 4 in 1959 and have lived with the problem ever since. I buried and reburied mainly by work but also because I had an elderly mother to look after, who disapproved of my transgender status but I forgive her for that as she was born in the 1920s. After she died my problem was released and became dominant in my mind and hence I sought therapy and now HRT. I am still in the closet but am seriously considering final step next year (living female publicly) if HRT takes effect.

For decades we literally have to exist rather than live for the sake of our families or for our careers but things at last are now changing in the world. I feel for you and for all others who have or are existing and likely suffering depression due to  a suppressed identity.



Offline pamelatransuk

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Re: Feeling like a "Red Headed Step Child", Am I the only one?
« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2018, 05:08:19 am »
Speaking as an actual 'red headed step-child' and yes it was traumatic!! lol  I would like to thank Denni for posting this and bringing it to our attention.  I'm sure we have all had things assumed when speaking to cis-people about being transgender and in my experience they all seem to assume that everyone who transitions does so all the way and their sexuality which in their minds is linked to gender, is such that the trans individual is then magically attracted to the opposite of their true gender. 

Thank you Vicki. In one sentence above you have managed to list the 3 most misunderstood points of being transgender by cisgendered people. Lets hope they learn!



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