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A leap of faith

Started by Mandy Spencer, June 17, 2024, 12:26:01 PM

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Mandy Spencer

I am a fifty something, M to F, Transgender Woman - although this is my secret, as I reside in the inner recesses of the closet. I have recently been exploring Susan's and been stunned by the care, compassion, human understanding; and deep insight and honesty shared on these pages. This has led to me joining and feeling able to discuss my journey here; and God knows I need to after all the years of repression. I have never before left any kind of trail - written or digital of my Transgender identity - so here goes!

My female self leapt out at a confused 13 year old, who wondered what the hell was happening, and it has been a struggle ever since. At 20, I was regularly presenting as female in public, although always terrified by the near misses- of being discovered by my brothers or male cousins and I would have been mortified to be revealed. My later 20s and 30s followed a more conventional path of marriage and family and by 40 I was perhaps relaxing into the notion that this had all been a developmental stage that I had outgrown.

How wrong I was! At 40, my female nature reasserted itself with tremendous force. I started going out in public again 'en femme' (when my wife was away on business), although still terrified of being outed, (although it's possible a neighbour saw me getting into my car in my black dress and heels!). I still convinced myself that this was something I could integrate and manage, as a part of my personality, without ever having to have the conversation with my wife, or anyone else.

The insights on this forum are so valuable and I can see that others have sometimes experienced their female identity coming forward even more strongly in later stages of life. I had learnt some neat psychological techniques to manage certain thoughts and emotions and keep things in a nice balance. Then, the fire breathing dragon swooped down and turned my conceipt to ashes. I am a woman, I will have to come out to family and friends, I will have to transition fully as a woman. Obviously these things come from a very deep and profound place - I have read others on the forums describing their discomfort and confusion. My self-denial is often excruciating now and I have no choice but to move forward - although with compassion for family in the approach. Hiding is no longer an option.

One massive positive from Susan's - I had often thought that it would be great if this kind of support and awareness, alongside social media, was available when I was a teen or in my 20's but at my age it was too late. This is obviously completely wrong - I can transition into the woman I am - physically as well as inwardly - and this thought gives me a sense of joy - although I realise there will be challenges.

So now the cat is out of the and I look forward to sharing.

Love and best wishes,
Mandy
     



 

   

LoriDee

Hello Mandy!

What a wonderful introduction. I am so glad that you are comfortable here and, as you know, many of us have felt the way you do.

If your plan is to have a journal of your transition, I would suggest starting a Member Blog. It will serve as your "home" here at Susan's where you can keep your readers and followers up to date on how things are going with you.

To get started, go to:
Members Blogs
and start a new topic for your personal journey.

You can see an example in my link below. Please keep in mind that this is a PUBLIC all-ages forum. So only share what you are comfortable with. If you need assistance finding your way around, just reach out and someone can answer your question or provide some guidance.

Welcome aboard, Sister!
My Life is Based on a True Story.
https://www.susans.org/index.php/topic,247442.0.html

Maybe the journey isn't so much about becoming anything.
Maybe it's about un-becoming everything that isn't really you,
so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.


2017 - GD Diagnosis / 2020 - HRT / 2022 - Legal Name Change / 2024 - Voice Training
  • skype:.?call
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    The following users thanked this post: Sarah B

Northern Star Girl

#2
@Mandy Spencer  cc:  @Sarah B  @LoriDee
Dear Mandy:
I am so very glad to see that you were finally able to login to our site.  I am sorry
that you had difficulty with getting your member account activated. 

You did exactly the right thing by sending me an Email informing me of the login issue
that you were having. 

I can usually solve those kinds of things quickly.

Your introduction and other postings here on the Forum are nice to see and to read...
... I am glad to see that you are getting quickly and actively involved on the Forum.

Whenever you have questions or problem regarding the Susan's Place site and the Forum
always feel free to message or Email me or any other staff member.


My warmest Welcome to you.
Danielle
  [Northern Star Girl]
The Forum Administrator    Email: alaskandanielle@yahoo.com
****Help support this website by:
Subscribing !     and/or by    Donating !

Check out my Personal Blog Threads below
to read more details about me and my life.

             (Click Links below):  [Oldest first]
  Aspiringperson is now Alaskan Danielle    
           I am the Hunted Prey : Danielle's Chronicles    
                  A New Chapter: Alaskan Danielle's Chronicles    
                             Danielle's Continuing Life Adventures
I started HRT March 2015 and
I've been Full-Time since December 2016.
I love living in a small town in Alaska
I am 44 years old and Single

        Email:  --->  alaskandanielle@
                             yahoo.com

Mandy Spencer

Thankyou LoriDee and Danielle for you kind and encouraging introductions.

For all of us, this means so much. I really feel safe in this space - at a time of high vulnerability. I feel I've found a new home!

Best wishes,
Mandy

Sarah B

#4
Hi Mandy

It's good to see you again and I noticed that you are finding your way around the forums.

I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you for sharing your personal story.  It is very much appreciated.  Please remember you only share what you are comfortable with and this is a public forum where anybody can read your postings.  There are a couple of ways to have a private conversation, Private Messages (PM) here on Susan's and on Susan's Discord.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 17, 2024, 12:26:01 PMI am a fifty something, M to F, Transgender Woman - although this is my secret, as I reside in the inner recesses of the closet. I have recently been exploring Susan's and been stunned by the care, compassion, human understanding; and deep insight and honesty shared on these pages. This has led to me joining and feeling able to discuss my journey here; and God knows I need to after all the years of repression. I have never before left any kind of trail - written or digital of my Transgender identity - so here goes!

I can relate to you being in the inner recesses of the closet.  You have mentioned that you are still in the closet and I have just recently written a post in regards to that particular issue.  If you click on the following link: Staying in the Closet you can get to read what I wrote if you want to and the other members here on Susan's who also made a posting.

I have always been in the 'closet' so to speak, I never associated with any 'community', until I heard about 'Jazz Jennings' and as a result, I came across Susan's Place.  I guess I may have lurked, but it does not matter.  I joined Susan's and become involved in the 'community' and of course I kept my personal details very close.

I found Susan's to be a treasure trove of information and that allowed me to know myself a lot better and who I was and even as you say; "been stunned by the care, compassion, human understanding and deep insight and honesty shared on these pages."  I left after two years and it's still the same after coming back recently.

I'm a bit more relaxed in revealing who I am now.  Susan's is the only place, where the 'outside' knows about me.  I have never felt I was repressed in anyway or suffered in keeping things secret about myself from everyone, including doctors unless it is absolutely necessary.  My family knows and accepts me unconditionally.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 17, 2024, 12:26:01 PMMy female self leapt out at a confused 13 year old, who wondered what the hell was happening, and it has been a struggle ever since. At 20, I was regularly presenting as female in public, although always terrified by the near misses- of being discovered by my brothers or male cousins and I would have been mortified to be revealed. My later 20s and 30s followed a more conventional path of marriage and family and by 40 I was perhaps relaxing into the notion that this had all been a developmental stage that I had outgrown.

In regards to myself I was about five years old, however I just accepted it, for want of a better description and of course all further thoughts on the matter.  I did for some unknown reason like you, kept these thoughts and feelings to myself and I guess it forms part of my character or personality to this day.

My feelings on wanting and longing to be a female grew stronger and stronger between ages of 20 and 30 years.  I would occasionally dress as a female, but the last two Christmas's of 1987 and 1988.  Sarah emerged and it was full on and she could not get enough, so Feb 1989, I changed my life completely around and I have not looked back since.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 17, 2024, 12:26:01 PMHow wrong I was! At 40, my female nature reasserted itself with tremendous force. I started going out in public again 'en femme' (when my wife was away on business), although still terrified of being outed, (although it's possible a neighbour saw me getting into my car in my black dress and heels!). I still convinced myself that this was something I could integrate and manage, as a part of my personality, without ever having to have the conversation with my wife, or anyone else.

There are a lot of members here on Susan's who can attest to withholding or suppressing these personal feelings and thought, only to have them come back and bite them viciously on the backside with a vengeance.

If and when you decide to reveal yourself, make sure you have a backup plan just in case something goes wrong.  Because once any information is revealed, there is no way that you can control it.  This is one reason why I keep things to myself and even now, I wonder if I have revealed to much information about myself.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 17, 2024, 12:26:01 PMThe insights on this forum are so valuable and I can see that others have sometimes experienced their female identity coming forward even more strongly in later stages of life. I had learnt some neat psychological techniques to manage certain thoughts and emotions and keep things in a nice balance. Then, the fire breathing dragon swooped down and turned my conceipt to ashes. I am a woman, I will have to come out to family and friends, I will have to transition fully as a woman.

How you cope in regard to your situation is up to you and only you, you can have help or advice from members of Susan's or from 'therapist's', especially one that is well versed in, 'Gender Identity issues', on how to go about doing it, or how you reveal yourself to others.  Ultimately it is up to you to make that final decision and you must be happy in doing so, regardless of the consequences.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 17, 2024, 12:26:01 PMObviously these things come from a very deep and profound place - I have read others on the forums describing their discomfort and confusion. My self-denial is often excruciating now and I have no choice but to move forward - although with compassion for family in the approach. Hiding is no longer an option.

Unfortunately I cannot offer any advice as I was never in this particular situation so to speak.  I never denied, never questioned and never doubted what I did.  When I changed my life around, I did not have to contend with any relationships, I sacrificed everything, I left family, friends, my way of life at the time and that included someone I liked and loved.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 17, 2024, 12:26:01 PMOne massive positive from Susan's - I had often thought that it would be great if this kind of support and awareness, alongside social media, was available when I was a teen or in my 20's but at my age it was too late. This is obviously completely wrong - I can transition into the woman I am - physically as well as inwardly - and this thought gives me a sense of joy - although I realise there will be challenges.

So now the cat is out of the 'bag' and I look forward to sharing.

Love and best wishes,
Mandy

I fixed part of your quote, it's in red!  Just to be a little funny, here are a couple more:

  •   The truth has seen the light
  •   Someone spilled the beans
  •   It's no longer under wraps
  •   It's now common knowledge
  •   The horses have left the stables

Like you I never had the information that is around today.  Even now I wonder would the information be a hindrance to me in achieving what I did so many years ago.  There are members who knew about their Gender Identity, but never transitioned.  No matter what you decide members here at Susan's will accept you for who you are.

Take care and if you need any help please do not hesitate to ask.  Help is only a keyboard away.

Love and Hugs
Sarah B
Official Greeter
@Mandy Spencer
Be who you want to be.
Sarah's Story
Feb 1989 Living my life as Sarah.
Feb 1989 Legally changed my name.
Mar 1989 Started hormones.
Feb 1991 Surgery.

imallie

Hiya Mandy -

Welcome!! Gosh, reading your story, as I'm sure everyone here who read it did, certain parts rang so true to me, and others while not my particular experience, are parts of stories I've heard and read from others several times in the last few years.

That's a long, convoluted way of saying - you're very much not alone in this!

Don't want to play armchair therapist in terms of you going out in public as you've been doing... other than, wow, it seems like maybe there's a part of you that very much wants other people to know so that you can stop having to carry the burden of this secret by yourself. And THAT, I can tell you, I very much empathize with... as I did not tell anyone until my mid/late 50's.  Well, that was just a few years ago and things have moved like a whirlwind ever since -- and it's been amazing!

If I could give you one piece of advice? It would be to reach out to a gender therapist and start working with him/her to try to really understand who Mandy is, what she wants/needs and how, when and most importantly if she needs to reveal herself to others in your life.  You only get one chance to tell your story to the most important people in your world... and no matter how badly you screw it up, the ones who love you may full well accept you for who you are. Conversely, no matter how expertly you do it, the ones who love you may just not be built to accept something like this, despite how deeply they love you.

However, by working with a therapist and making sure you have both a real grip on who you are... and strategies for when and how to reveal yourself to those in your life, you will absolutely give yourself the best possible chance of success. And I think you owe it to yourself and all you've been through to give yourself the best odds you can, yeah?

Anyway, regardless of all that... you will find a whole community of folks here willing and able to share our successes and failures, listen patiently to your questions, make you laugh when you need it... and just generally make you feel like you've got some folks on your side. Cause you 100% do!

Good luck!!

Love,
Allie

Mandy Spencer

Hi again Sarah,

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your wisdom and experience for my specific situation. It's still blowing my mind that you and others are being so responsive and compassionate.

Quote from: Sarah B on June 17, 2024, 08:36:55 PMI can relate to you being in the inner recesses of the closet.  You have mentioned that you are still in the closet and I have just recently written a post in regards to that particular issue.  If you click on the following link: Staying in the Closet you can get to read what I wrote if you want to and the other members here on Susan's who also made a posting.

I have read the 'staying in the closet' link. Firstly - what wonderful people!  As you mention, there are different approaches across the spectrum. I've never really been a blogger or social media user and it is important to manage this. Until a few hours ago, I had never told anyone I was Transgender, even in writing, and as of right now - I see that over 300 people have viewed my post - so now that private world is well and truly out there, and to be honest, the idea is actually doing wonders for my mental health. But of course, no one knows who Mandy is in the 'real world' I can see that individuals approach things in different and unique ways and there does not have to be a rush to disclosure.

'If and when you decide to reveal yourself, make sure you have a backup plan just in case something goes wrong.  Because once any information is revealed, there is no way that you can control it.  This is one reason why I keep things to myself and even now, I wonder if I have revealed to much information about myself.'

[/quote]

Your point is well taken. Our neighbour was telling us about her sister's recent divorce. The husband had apparently come out as a Transgender woman.  The narrative now is that the sister had drawn the short straw, inadvertently marrying a Trans person. The husband is now an object of ridicule and criticism and this story will no doubt have spread far and wide. Tragic that the family chose this approach, and although I have never met him -I'm sure this was not the scenario he expected. I am generally a cautious and very private person, but I occasionally bottle things up to the extent that I become reckless. Ie, last week during an argument, I almost blurted out to my wife that I am Transgender - it was on the tip of my tongue and at that stage where we lose control of what we say. It didn't come out though and definitely would not have been the right time.

Thanks again Sarah and it's so good to know that you and the wonderful Team at Susan's are so close by.

Love,
Mandy



   


Mandy Spencer

Thankyou so much for taking the time to reach out Allie.

Your comments mean a lot to me. 

Quote from: imallie on June 18, 2024, 01:03:24 AMDon't want to play armchair therapist in terms of you going out in public as you've been doing... other than, wow, it seems like maybe there's a part of you that very much wants other people to know so that you can stop having to carry the burden of this secret by yourself. And THAT, I can tell you, I very much empathize with... as I did not tell anyone until my mid/late 50's.  Well, that was just a few years ago and things have moved like a whirlwind ever since -- and it's been amazing!

Yeh, there very much is - I'm bursting to be able to sit down with someone and tell them who I am, after working so hard for so long to hide it.  Like you say, therapy is a must to get that reflection. 

If I could give you one piece of advice? It would be to reach out to a gender therapist and start working with him/her to try to really understand who Mandy is, what she wants/needs and how, when and most importantly if she needs to reveal herself to others in your life.  You only get one chance to tell your story to the most important people in your world... and no matter how badly you screw it up, the ones who love you may full well accept you for who you are. Conversely, no matter how expertly you do it, the ones who love you may just not be built to accept something like this, despite how deeply they love you.

Very true - I have no idea, although I suspect they will be accepting- it will be a big shock and emotions might cloud things.

However, by working with a therapist and making sure you have both a real grip on who you are... and strategies for when and how to reveal yourself to those in your life, you will absolutely give yourself the best possible chance of success. And I think you owe it to yourself and all you've been through to give yourself the best odds you can, yeah?

Anyway, regardless of all that... you will find a whole community of folks here willing and able to share our successes and failures, listen patiently to your questions, make you laugh when you need it... and just generally make you feel like you've got some folks on your side. Cause you 100% do!

This is incredible. Thank you so much Allie.

Love
Mandy

LoriDee

Looking good, Mandy. Great pic!
My Life is Based on a True Story.
https://www.susans.org/index.php/topic,247442.0.html

Maybe the journey isn't so much about becoming anything.
Maybe it's about un-becoming everything that isn't really you,
so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.


2017 - GD Diagnosis / 2020 - HRT / 2022 - Legal Name Change / 2024 - Voice Training
  • skype:.?call
  •  

imallie

Wonderful pic, Mandy! Thanks for sharing!!  ;D
  •  

Northern Star Girl

@Mandy Spencer
Dear Mandy:  ....
Yes indeed, you now have your very own personal Blog thread here on the Forum.
Consider this your HOME here where all of us can visit you and follow up on
your life endeavors as you continue on in your journey.

I am happy that you were able to post your Avatar/Profile photo...
...it is always nice to be able to put a face to a name here on the Forum.


HUGS, Danielle [Northern Star Girl]

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 12:19:57 AMHi all - my blog is now live!!

I feel really blessed to be able to connect with this amazing community. I've posted my picture - an actual photo of me rather than another type of avatar (passport style and boring - but clearly me). Its all been a bit of a blur - I've never been a great social media person, but once I started talking to people about all these interesting Transgender topics - I've hardly been able to stop.

Until a couple of days ago - this world had only existed in my own mind - for decades - now I can see my picture looking back from posts and I see my intro - my deepest personal experiences, already has been viewed nearly 600 times. My head is spinning - but it's exciting.

Love and hugs
Mandy 
****Help support this website by:
Subscribing !     and/or by    Donating !

Check out my Personal Blog Threads below
to read more details about me and my life.

             (Click Links below):  [Oldest first]
  Aspiringperson is now Alaskan Danielle    
           I am the Hunted Prey : Danielle's Chronicles    
                  A New Chapter: Alaskan Danielle's Chronicles    
                             Danielle's Continuing Life Adventures
I started HRT March 2015 and
I've been Full-Time since December 2016.
I love living in a small town in Alaska
I am 44 years old and Single

        Email:  --->  alaskandanielle@
                             yahoo.com

Sarah B

Hi Mandy

Nice to see that you have your own blog area.  18 posts at this time and you are killing it.  Thank you for sharing your picture.

Lori says:

Quote from: LoriDee on June 19, 2024, 12:23:31 AMLooking good, Mandy. Great pic!

That's an understatement if I ever heard one.  Fantastic picture and no hormones either, seriously.

Now I will have to work on my blog.  Talk soon.

Love and Hugs
Sarah B
Official Greeter
@LoriDee
@Mandy Spencer
Be who you want to be.
Sarah's Story
Feb 1989 Living my life as Sarah.
Feb 1989 Legally changed my name.
Mar 1989 Started hormones.
Feb 1991 Surgery.

Sarah B

Hi Mandy

When I say the following;

Quote from: Sarah B on June 19, 2024, 01:37:07 AMThat's an understatement if I ever heard one.  Fantastic picture and no hormones either, seriously.

I was not kidding around.  When Sarah presented herself for the first time in public around Christmas times 1987 and 1988 (at least a week).  She did not know that she was passing, especially the second Christmas holiday, she was just living her life as any other female and she was not on hormones at the time either.  I was 30 years old at the time.

So if you go on hormones, I believe the changes will be unbelievable.  So, if and when you do, you will be able to record the changes with your phone.  The changes can come quick or fast so watch out for that!

Take care and have fun.

Love and Hugs
Sarah B
Official Greeter
Be who you want to be.
Sarah's Story
Feb 1989 Living my life as Sarah.
Feb 1989 Legally changed my name.
Mar 1989 Started hormones.
Feb 1991 Surgery.

Sarah B

Hi Mandy

You said;

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 02:01:36 AMThanks so much - that's really affirming - I have a very limited range of pictures at the moment. With the hair and light makeup - it came out a bit different to my everyday, non-feminine presentation.

You are lucky, I did not have the ability to record my progress, but then I was the one always taking photographs and mobile phones were not around the time I changed my life around and on top of that I was too busy living and working to worry about selfies.  They had not been invented then.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 02:01:36 AMSarah, I took your comments about self-protection seriously. I wouldn't necessarily want to out myself through this blog - although someone who knows me well might look at the picture and think - doesn't that look like?...I think it's reasonably unlikely. I believe at some point though, I will come out like this, generally.

This is where I'm completely different from other members of the 'community' for the want of a better word or description, in general.  As I have said, I never will out myself, the only exception being for a couple of doctors for example, just recently my new general practitioner and gynaecologist.

The reasons for keeping myself; "in the closet" or "remaining stealth (I don't like this term)", is because of all the negative connotations, its like being branded on the forehead with the word 'trans' (I'm not 'trans' anything, I'm just another female in society), its none of their business and by saying nothing, I eliminate all the 'discrimination' and other problems associated with my change.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 02:01:36 AMYou've all been so caring - I feel I've known you all for a long time - especially with the level of self disclosure and intimacy of the topics discussed. And having read your own blogs and felt your journeys.

Lots of Love,
Mandy

Susan's Place is the only place where I can discuss certain details about my life.  A few members of my family know a lot more details about me and has generally been the women and they appreciated what I have told them.  I also say to those who have been told, they can ask me any questions in regards to what I have done.

The reasons for self disclosure and intimacy is because in my day, there was virtually no information whatsoever.  I was lucky in a sense to be able to change my life around on so little information.

These days there is tons of information enough to bury you for a long time.  The reason I post my stories is so that I can pass my knowledge onto others.

Have fun reading and learning.

Love and Hugs
Sarah B
Official Greeter
Be who you want to be.
Sarah's Story
Feb 1989 Living my life as Sarah.
Feb 1989 Legally changed my name.
Mar 1989 Started hormones.
Feb 1991 Surgery.
  •  

Sarah B

Hi Mandy

One more for the road!  It will soon be my bedtime.  You say in one of your posts;

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 02:58:05 AMWow - that sounds amazing Sarah! I'm still very ignorant on all this, and I guess the quality of interventions has improved over the years. I'm quiet slim - but also over 6 foot tall - not that there aren't plenty of tall women these days. I always feared that I could never pass - that I look clumsy and obvious - and I obviously have no interest in coming out like this.

Yes, you are right women come in all shapes and sizes, yes there are tall women, so you need to observe what they wear and do and you imitate what you like.  When you do go out just be yourself and be confident.  It's as simple as that.  You will hear around the forums "we are our own worst critics".

People are so busy wrapped up in their own lives, that they don't notice what others are doing around them in general.  Dress appropriately for your age and height, less makeup means more, and hair styled as well.  This way you will not look clumsy or obvious.

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 02:58:05 AMAlso - from what I've read on these forums - changes in body shape and facial appearance, breast growth, genital reduction can potentially be rapid and non-superficial. I'm travelling with work a lot currently, and some other issues-  but once I'm ready to start - it would be great to move fast.  I read a discussion here where sisters were discussing HRT and genital shrinkage to a small size (opposite of the well endowed male) and increased cup size. This is exactly what I want.

Then there's the voice - which is quite deep naturally - is this likely to become lighter?

The changes in ones body, well I have read a lot about the changes or what was wanted in ones body mentioned over the years and it comes down to each individuals circumstances.  When I changed my life around,  I knew to a certain extent that my facial features would soften and my breasts would take time to grow, five years was mentioned in that regards.  There was discussion on 'hip's, and whether hormones would affect them.

In my case if the changes occurred then they occurred and if they did not then it was not a problem for me.  In other words I was not worried about what changes occurred to my body and I happily accepted what did change.  I was too busy working and living to worry about these issues.  I was just another prepubescent girl who's body was changing and of course my breasts growing was the only part in which I did think about from time to time.

In terms of what happened down stairs, I did not notice anything in terms of shrinkage or functionality, when I went on hormones.  Why?  Again I was too busy working and living my life.  In addition I knew that I needed to take care of them as they would be needed when I finally had my surgery.  If shrinkage did occur in my case then tucking, may certainly have counteracted that effect.

In terms of my voice, I just learnt to sing along or imitate other female singers when I went to swimming training in the morning and when I finally changed my life around and got my first job all I did was speak in a very soft voice.  When I was at my first job as Sarah, I was told by another female employee that I spoke so soft and quietly or something similar and yes I was stunned to say the least.

Today you have a wealth of training on YouTube, surgeries and professional voice coaches that will help you in this particular area.

Well I think I have given you enough food for thought.  I hope that things will go well with your dreams.

Love and Hugs
Sarah B
Official Greeter
Be who you want to be.
Sarah's Story
Feb 1989 Living my life as Sarah.
Feb 1989 Legally changed my name.
Mar 1989 Started hormones.
Feb 1991 Surgery.

LoriDee

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 02:58:05 AMThen there's the voice - which is quite deep naturally - is this likely to become lighter? 

Hi Mandy,

That is a great question. Sadly, hormones do not change your voice. The reason is because of the way the vocal tract grows while exposed to testosterone. I have just completed voice training through the VA, where I have a voice coach teaching me various techniques to change one's voice. The key is to find a comfortable pitch so you are not straining to speak and practice it, over and over and over until it becomes a habit.

On YouTube, TransVoiceLessons has many videos that are informative about how voice happens, as well as various practice exercises. I found it very useful, but videos do not give feedback on how you are doing. This is where a voice coach is very valuable. In the meantime, you can practice the exercises and record your voice with your phone. Then play it back and listen to how you sound. Continue to make adjustments.

For me, once I "found my girl voice" it seemed easy to switch back and forth. I'm still practicing because I sometimes forget to pay attention to how I am speaking. But in this process, I think my natural speaking voice has become higher pitched and softer. I just need more practice. Since I live alone, I don't have a "practice partner" who hears me speak daily. I just practice while speaking with friends and neighbors.

Hope this helps.
My Life is Based on a True Story.
https://www.susans.org/index.php/topic,247442.0.html

Maybe the journey isn't so much about becoming anything.
Maybe it's about un-becoming everything that isn't really you,
so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.


2017 - GD Diagnosis / 2020 - HRT / 2022 - Legal Name Change / 2024 - Voice Training

Robbyv213

@Mandy Spencer congrats on your blog and your picture. Im not as brave and courageous as you to post an actual picture of myself just yet. I am still very masculine. I feel I'd rather let people's imaginations paint a picture for them till I feel ready to share a picture (which will prob be never since there will always be something wrong i.e bad lighting, bad angle, bad hair day or make up etc. lol)

I look forward to following your journey. One step at a time, one day at a time and you'll be where you want to before you know It.
https://www.susans.org/index.php/topic,248248.0.html#msg2272201

Everyday live your life a little more as your true self. Everyday live your life as the person you want to be and eventually you'll be that person before you even noticed you changed.

LoriDee

Quote from: Mandy Spencer on June 19, 2024, 12:59:21 PMOMG guys - now over 1000 views in 2 days!!  I am still in the closet?!   ::)

Right now, there are 527 guests and 7 users reading posts on Susan's Place. The highest count so far today was 829 online, and our highest count to date was over 3,000 online on March 4th.

It is a good thing that there is so much interest in your blog as well as all of the information that Susan's Place provides. Just be careful and only share what you are comfortable with. The internet is forever. Once posted it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to take it back.
My Life is Based on a True Story.
https://www.susans.org/index.php/topic,247442.0.html

Maybe the journey isn't so much about becoming anything.
Maybe it's about un-becoming everything that isn't really you,
so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.


2017 - GD Diagnosis / 2020 - HRT / 2022 - Legal Name Change / 2024 - Voice Training
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    The following users thanked this post: Mandy Spencer

Robbyv213

@Mandy Spencer I guess it just depends on what you feel the closet is for you.

I know I am still very much in the closet to many in my life besides a few people, even though I'm very much not hiding or in closet here.

So just depends I guess.
https://www.susans.org/index.php/topic,248248.0.html#msg2272201

Everyday live your life a little more as your true self. Everyday live your life as the person you want to be and eventually you'll be that person before you even noticed you changed.