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Offline Shana A

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revisiting de-transition
« on: November 29, 2009, 07:43:24 pm »
As a person who transitioned, lived over a year RLT, and then re-transitioned, I've been taking the news of Mike Penner/Christine Daniels' suicide particularly hard. I know there are others with similar experiences of de/re-transitioning, yet it isn't something that gets talked about much here. I'm starting this thread for that purpose.

Who else has re-transitioned? Reasons for doing so? Considering transition again? Other thoughts?

Z

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Janet_Girl

Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2009, 07:56:50 pm »
I did, sort of, about 25 years ago.  There was nothing that I could find about transitioning and I did not have a job.  I would have given my soul to transition, but alas I could not because of my circumstances.

Which is why I get upset when the younger ones go after us late transitioners.  I de-transitioned because of others.  I also tried the release but it only ended in a trip to the nut house. 

It is sad that society can not just let us be us.  What is so f-ing hard about that.  How many must die for us to be allowed to transition.

I am sorry but I am in one of those moods and I just want to be allowed to be ME.


Yet another name for next years list.  :( :( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'( :'(
Janet

Nicky

Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2009, 08:11:49 pm »
Interelia was someone that transitioned and retransitioned and then found they went back too far and struggled. I think they would have some interesting things to say.

I saw a doco on people that 'untransitioned' in Britain. One guy lived as a girl, had hormone therapy and decided that it was not them and went back to living as a guy - had a breast reduction. But the way that they still talked about womens clothing made me think that they will find they had made a mistake.

Another person had a sex change and had a wonderful supportive partner. But their partner died leaving them lost. They felt their sex change was a mistake and they tried going back to being a guy and could not stand it. They felt stuck in limbo.

Anyway I think my point is maybe some people would be happier in the middle, if only their was a place for them in the grey? You might keep swinging between male and female only to find neither is home..I'm not saying that is everyone but it might be a possibility for some.

Post Merge: November 29, 2009, 08:17:51 pm
Maybe if people did not think there was only one end point to transitioning ...

Offline Flan

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2009, 08:18:04 pm »
* Flan huggles Janet Lynn

I'm (sorta) cross-posting this from a staff forum in search for neutral input and ideas/refs.

https://www.susans.org/wiki/Detransitioning

While it's easy to type about the medical aspect of de/re-transition, the personal reasons, the deeper issues surrounding it are a bit harder to simply think of...

because I *can't* just say something like "gender issues" without subconsciously saying why *I* made a choice to do whatever, such as go from female identified to straight androgyne.

(which in my case, was acknowledging that in order to be more true to myself, I overshot the real me and attempted to be who I wasn't by way of overdoing the female aspects in an attempt to compensate for years of living a lie as "male")
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Janet_Girl

Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2009, 08:21:34 pm »
Thanks Hon.  I am so tired of losing another one, because of the BS that so many think that they have the right to KILL US!  Ether by pressure or by action.



Janet

Offline Shana A

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2009, 08:47:22 pm »
Anyway I think my point is maybe some people would be happier in the middle, if only their was a place for them in the grey? You might keep swinging between male and female only to find neither is home..I'm not saying that is everyone but it might be a possibility for some.

I believe we need more education toward societal acceptance for people in the middle or outside the binary. I made a choice after RLT to live outside the binary in my own gender space, but it isn't acknowledged by others except some people close to me, and that can make life challenging at times. I sometimes think it would be much easier to be one or the other, in terms of dealing w the world, but that isn't me. But it doesn't make it any easier.

Janet, yes, I'm so tired of adding names to our list!

Z
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Offline Renate

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2009, 10:54:24 pm »
Let's not forget that Renée Richards went on HRT initially, then detransitioned and had a mastectomy.

There are more cautionary tales at A Warning for Those Considering SRS

Autumn

Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2009, 11:04:29 pm »
* Flan huggles Janet Lynn

I'm (sorta) cross-posting this from a staff forum in search for neutral input and ideas/refs.

https://www.susans.org/wiki/Detransitioning

While it's easy to type about the medical aspect of de/re-transition, the personal reasons, the deeper issues surrounding it are a bit harder to simply think of...

because I *can't* just say something like "gender issues" without subconsciously saying why *I* made a choice to do whatever, such as go from female identified to straight androgyne.

(which in my case, was acknowledging that in order to be more true to myself, I overshot the real me and attempted to be who I wasn't by way of overdoing the female aspects in an attempt to compensate for years of living a lie as "male")

I have been very careful not to try to overshoot in my journey. It's the classic mistake people make.

I recently discovered that I am not sexually submissive like I thought I was for some time. In fact, this past week, I whipped a couple of guys with a belt and thoroughly enjoyed it. Expressing submission and softness and that sort of behavior was a part of me overcompensating for being 'male' and trying to be more feminine. Now that I am distinctly much more feminine, I feel no pressing need to over-express that behavior, and in fact, sometimes resent people believing that helpless is default.

I certainly never did strength training or worked out when I was a guy, but I find a great interest in becoming stronger and more fit (i'm already healthy, but I could go for a bowflex body haha) and capable and reliant on myself... as people around me expect less of that from me. Of course, before, if i worked out, I'd put on muscle and lose what little femininity I had, so I felt unable to do that even when I wanted to.

As I react to peoples' changing perceptions and treatments of me, socially, physically, sexually, emotionally - I am building a much better perspective of the true differences between life as a man and life as a woman. And I find myself incredulous to things that men have that I never recognized or appreciated (or found advantageous) that give me pause to think about. But I can't imagine going back to male. I mean, where I am now, happy and at peace, I do not see myself remaining if I became male again.

Every person is different though. My words pass no judgment on anyone - and honestly, I hope that i never find myself needing to consider detransition, as I cannot imagine a more difficult decision.

Laura91

Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2009, 11:11:53 pm »
Let's not forget that Renée Richards went on HRT initially, then detransitioned and had a mastectomy.

There are more cautionary tales at A Warning for Those Considering SRS

I remember this article. The story of Samantha Kane always blew my mind. Just that case alone shows why therapists and the SOC is a good idea.

Offline Just Kate

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2009, 12:24:51 am »
Thanks for the nod Nicky.
Who else has re-transitioned? Reasons for doing so? Considering transition again? Other thoughts?

I have de-transitioned.  De-transitioning was about finding a proper balance.  Living as a girl was sincerely wonderful, but it came with so many strings.  I felt like I left one box that I hated (being male) for another box destined to grind on me (being female).  I felt like even though I was living successfully as a female, I couldn't be completely honest with others, even those whom I wanted to be close with -as being honest with them meant being honest about my past.  Anything less than full disclosure for me would leave me feeling inauthentic, and I value authenticity in my relationships far too much to leave big holes in them.  Living as a girl was wonderful, but the cost to my relationships was too high. 

I started wondering if I really needed to go to all the trouble of complete transition if my real self fit somewhere in between.  I mean, don't get me wrong, the idea of being a girl, even one that others know is transsexual is appealing, but ultimately has higher emotional, social, and we musn't forget financial cost than learning to be a male who people know is transsexual.  I realized my problem wasn't as much my sex (though I still have a degree of body dysmorphia) but the societal expectations of my sex.  Frankly, I have always acted feminine and had feminine interests, was attracted to males, and abhorred being put into the "male" box.  I realized the only way to be happy was to shrug off that box and not put myself into another one.

It has taken a lot of weights and measures though.  I have to balance being true to myself and my desire to not be regarded in the male role with the problems that come from living outside the binary.  There have been times I've gone too far in the male box direction since then - usually to meet society's expectations in some way or to maintain employment - but I notice the GID creep back and so need to balance it again.

So, would I transition again - realistically no.  Would I LIKE to?  Yes, but my idea of transition would need to not include the other costs - something that is a fantasy.  In the end I imagine I'll be happier being "me" regardless of my external sex, but I have accepted that that happiness is not without sacrifice - the sacrifice of complete transition.
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rejennyrated

Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2009, 04:35:09 am »
What a fascinating topic and interesting and thought provoking replies. It made me realise just how lucky we are when we have found a comfortable place to exist on the sex and gender spectrum.

My first thought was that I hadn't de- or re- tansitioned and that I couldn't imagine ever doing so, maybe because a while ago a thorough medical investigation, for an unxepected problem, revealed that I had actually had an intersex condition all along, so it now seems neither sex would have beeen 100% right.

But then I thought a bit more and realised that actually all through my rather unusual childhood I was constantly transitioning, de-transitioning and re-transitioning. I always tell people that I grew up as "an almost girl" - the almost bit covers the days and/or hours when, for one reason or another, I had to conform to outward biology because of social obligation. (Remember I grew up in the 1960's so it was a major coup when I managed to get my rather liberal and experimental school to allow me to wear a kilt (a skirt to me) as part of my uniform.)

Then there was the period between 1979 and 1984 when I had fallen out big time with John Randall (my original gender psychiatrist) who wanted me to "try being a male properly" because his take on it was that in my childhood it had all been made to easy for me by my rather over sympathetic mother. During those five years I did live almost as a normal male, although in protest I also stopped going to see Randall.

Finally in 1983/4 the point of no return was reached where I transitioned back to female properly. But the thing is, in my case I almost feel like I didn't really transition. Instead I kind of found a compromise which worked for me, one which did involve SRS.

I won't re-de-transition now because I'm now comfortable with my physical body and my perception is that, as a woman, I can present how the heck I like. I don't have to be girly girly... but I can be, or I could even wear a suit and tie if I wanted to. So I can't really see the point I guess. Besides being female has become like a comfortable old suit of clothes that I don't really have to think about. I just am.

But is interesting to take this topic out, give it a long hard look and in the process realise just how many times even I myself crossed that line without realising it whilst maturing.

I think I understan those who choose not to transition a bit better now and I think maybe I'm going to be less flippant from now on when someone asks me how I decided to undergo SRS. So thank you to everyone for your fascintating insights. I look forward to reading more.  :)

Offline Dana Lane

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2009, 05:27:32 am »
Don't forget Michael/Michele Burke! Religion had a part in his detransition and it caused severe depression. I say 'his' because he is male again.  Does anyone know what happened to him?
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Offline Syne

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2009, 04:15:47 pm »
I transitioned after being on HRT for a very short time. My body loved the change in hormones and exploded with femme curves. I eventually could not pass for male and transitioned. Things went to hell and I detransitioned.

Why:
1) No support from work. I worked for a big box retailer and the management did not even tell the employees that I was transitioning. Talk about a big first day on the job! I was the center of everyone's attention and EVERYONE had to come and check me out. I was also sexually harassed on the job. They fired the employee but did not ban him from the store so he would come in and call me all sorts of names. Also had a customer masturbate while watching me work and ended up being escorted by a good guy in loss prevention whenever I left the store for awhile.

2) Threats. All kinds. Fun stuff.

3) An endoc that was 2 hours away who did not believe in blood work and was more concerned about being paid than my welfare. Local good endoc (who I now see) had a massive wait list at the time AND was not covered by my insurance.

4) Money. I was working retail making all of $11/hour. I barely had enough to eat each month let alone do anything else like go to doctors and get hormones.

5) Crumbling support. I do not trust others that much now and was even worse about it back then. My therapist, the only one I had come to respect back then, was retiring and between the crappy endoc, money issues, and a stalled name change on the fed level....

6) Could not get hired. I looked great. Carried myself well. Dressed professionally. And still could not get work anywhere doing anything, including other retail jobs.

7) Could not handle the opposite sex. I was hit on, constantly, by guys. Everywhere I went I was being checked out and hit on. Maybe for some of you that would be great but it freaked me out, badly. At the time I did not even entertain the notion of going out with guys. Today is a different story. ;)   Oh and note: Wearing lesbian themed clothing and jewelry just makes them try harder.

8 ) Bad guys. Stalkers and other nutjobs.

9) Loss of my primary care physician. Yup, did not like the trans.

10) Depression. Spiraled heavily and quickly.

I detransitioned and swore to rebuild my life. Within a year I had taken on a new job and that led to another good job and then I went back to the other but at a higher pay and things have only improved. My insurance covered the kick butt endoc and I found a new therapist to write the letters that I needed rewritten which she did almost immediately.

Plans to retransition were derailed once by my being laid off. It was a post 9/11 world and the business did not scale back quickly enough and so I was shown the door. I then had to put in one year at the place I am at now before moving forward (was sure they would fire me and wanted legal ammo).

I will state that my going backwards gave my family ammo for not being too thrilled with my choice to transition again. they kept saying I was not happy the first time (they had no idea what I was truly facing back then and they still really do not. If my mom knew the details of some of the things that have happened to me in the last decade she would probably have a heart attack) and it took them awhile to see that I am happy now.

Today I am happy, healthy, and post op.

I have no regrets for the whole journey. I have learned more about myself and society and am a better person for it.

Offline K8

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2009, 07:01:27 pm »
In the book “True Selves”, Brown lists ten different kinds of people who have come to her seeking approval for GRS but says none of them are, in fact, transsexuals.  If this is true, then that supports the need for the Standards of Care to make sure each of us is on the right track before going through all the major problems of transition and GRS.

Later in the book she states that in her practice, 1% of FTMs and 1.5% of MTFs regretted it after GRS.  That’s a small percentage but a significant number of people.

It seems that, as in most aspects of life, one size does not fit all.

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Online V M

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2009, 07:54:23 pm »
Sometimes I think about giving up, ringing the bell, de-transitioning

Part of it is the cost involved. I don't know if I'll ever have enough to complete my transition

This depresses me allot. Also I feel like everyone hates me. More depression

I think about suicide allot. I'm no-one famous. No-one will miss me anyway
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Offline Flan

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #15 on: November 30, 2009, 08:34:59 pm »
I think about suicide allot. I'm no-one famous. No-one will miss me anyway

I'm not famous either, nor will ever be, and I'll admit the cost of everything that I've neglected over the years is silly big. (and I'm not talking just cost of transition expenses)

But I don't care, I just want to be more or less happy while on this loony asylum of a planet, and while you may not think anyone will miss you when dead, you better believe there is somebody out there who would miss your ideas.

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Offline Tammy Hope

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2009, 10:52:00 pm »
Don't forget Michael/Michele Burke! Religion had a part in his detransition and it caused severe depression. I say 'his' because he is male again.  Does anyone know what happened to him?
http://www.browardpalmbeach.com/2007-10-11/news/tranny-regret/

I read that whole article and I didn't come away with the feeling that Berke was necessarily trans but he most certainly has issues and he's very much an illustration of organized religion's tendency to slip into "fixing people" instead of loving people.
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Offline JennyB

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2009, 11:19:26 pm »
I'm not full time yet, but I've found myself doing a lot self examining witch is part of the SOC.

I recently took a big step back help smooth things out with my wife. It felt good at first, but about 2 weeks later. I felt that i still needed to transition.

I agree with the the standards of care you definitely need to take your time to make sure that you are doing the right thing.

I look at the day I start going full time as my transition not the surgery.

rejennyrated

Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #18 on: December 01, 2009, 03:11:25 am »

It seems that, as in most aspects of life, one size does not fit all.


Absolutely right Kate!

Unfortunately it also applies to the standards of care. I think I have done well enough in life during my 25 years of postop life to qualify as a "real" transsexual whatever that means? But I know that I would never have survived the modern (more demanding) standards of care - I'd have been found in a ditch somewhere dead at my own hand.

The only reason that I am alive today, 25 years postop, happy, financially succesful, 21 years with a loving partner, at the centre of a large group of friends and a pillar of my local community is because I was lucky enough to find a doctor who, after hearing my story, realised that because of the way I lived in my childhood and teen years I had already effectively done my RLE many times over. By the time I was at uni it was trying living as a male which became the (inverted) RLE and which confirmed that I needed to be female.

So I was allowed through the medical process at breakneck speed (just under 6 months). Now that might only suit 0.01% of people. But even if there is only one (me) then it's still a tragedy if the doctors start treating the rules rather than a patient and as a result lose that one person's life.

At the moment the standards of care are all we have... but I really think we really do need to develop a better system of diagnosis. One which doesn't rely on putting barriers in the way of the genuine cases to dicourage the others. The genuine ones are, after all, most likely to be the ones who are suffering the most and are therefore paradoxically least able to deal with vaulting the hurdles. Although happily I there are some doctors who realise that.

I also genuinely find it puzzling when some people cite the "high cost of transition". I am honestly not aware that my transition ever cost me anything (apart of course from some doctors bills). But I never lost a friend or a job through it. Maybe I was just exceptionally lucky? Or perhaps it was because I effectively transitioned whilst still a child. In which case those of you who have to take those terrible hard knocks as an adult have my infinite respect and my deepest sympathy. I can't imagine how strong a person you have to be to go through such hell. I almost can't imagine how sould destroying it must be to come to a point where you feel that you have to give up on your dream.

My respect to all of you.

Offline kelliBennett

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Re: revisiting de-transition
« Reply #19 on: December 01, 2009, 06:13:54 am »
De-transitioning scares me. Which is why I took a long hard thoughtful look at even moving forward at all. I have long suffered with the issue and I needed to really search my soul and my feelings about everything.

My therapist has noted a few things in the last two years. She told me a while back most come in with a host of other problems thinking transitioning will solve them, yet those issues still exist even in the other gender.

She told me recently of all the patients she has had I am one of the most well adjust, level headed, thoughtful, well learned, thorough patients she had. She has watched me come in as a confused scare person to blossom into a confidant, energetic, beautiful woman that I am today. Now it is just making it permanent that is going to be the challenge.
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