How Did I Know


Image from Shane 
on UnSplash

Every now and then I get asked how or when I knew I was transgender or at the least had issues with my gender.

In fact the last time I remember anyone asking was when my daughter and I were discussing her own child's gender issues and the extreme possibility the child was preparing to come out as trans to the world. To start with, my daughter has always been one of my strongest allies, supporting my gender journeys in everyway she could. So she knew more than a little about the process of joining the world as your authentic self. 

Regardless of all of that, I answered her question the only way I knew how. Even though I may not been able to vocalize my gender feelings in a way anyone would understand (including myself), I knew deep down something was wrong in my world. Perhaps my strongest indication was when I woke up in the morning saddened because I had just dreamed I was a girl. Somehow I thought most if not all the other boys I knew did not have their basic gender to worry about on a daily basis. 

The honest answer to the question became, I had always known I was born with a feminine soul and wanted to express her as much as I could. And I also learned the hard way to try to purge all vestiges of her existence was a waste of time and money. All it really did was depress me and destroyed my mental health even further than it already was. Since I had already been diagnosed with a bi-polar disorder, I had a couple of therapists try to connect the dots between my gender issues and me being bi-polar. I knew, one was separate from another and resisted their theories until I found a therapist who took the time and effort to understand where I was coming from. 

In many ways, the real question became not how did I know, to how did I cope with the change. Even though my grandchild was blessed with an understanding set of parents, they still faced the normal who, what and why questions any transgender person has to live with. When you pile on the normal challenge of life, the entire process we live with seems so unfair. But then again,(you undoubtedly have heard this before), who said life had to be fair? 

Another hurdle I faced when I was deciding to finally give up my male life and come out to the world was understanding myself. For nearly a half a century I fought my male self for dominance and when I finally decided to give it up, it was such a relief. The whole process felt as if I was taking a huge load of bricks off of my shoulders. At the time, I was very much out in the world as as serious cross dresser anyhow, so the jump I needed to make was not as far as it would have been earlier in life. So why not come out before I became any older. Since I was in my early sixties by then. I knew it was past time to live my truth.

One thing which makes me recoil in anger is when someone makes the statement I am less trans because I waited so long to come out. When in fact we all deserve the respect to come out as we please because every life is different.  The end result is all that matters. 

If you think you know you are transgender or are slowly coming along in your exploration process, all power to you. The bottom line is it your life, live it the best you can.