Showing posts with label female. Show all posts
Showing posts with label female. Show all posts

Saturday, January 30, 2021

Be Careful What you Wish For

 Lately here in Cyrsti's Condo, we have been discussing a few of the ramifications of life insurance and to a differing degree, changing your legal gender markers.

Here in Ohio, it was not too difficult or expensive to change my legal name, gender on my driver's license, my name/gender in my Veterans Administration paperwork and my name on my social security card. (not my gender) Also, I still cannot change my birth certificate gender here in Ohio.

It turns out, not being able to change my Social Security gender at the moment turned out to be a good thing after I heard this from Connie:

"When I applied for Social Security and Medicare, I did so in person with the proper documentation with my legal name change. I did not, however, change my gender marker, as I felt it wasn't worth opening that can of worms. I guess I should have been more aware, though, because the person on the other side of the glass partition checked off the Female box for me. It ended up being a pain in the ass to get it changed back when I later had trouble getting Medicare to pay on a doctor bill. Health insurance considers the differences in male and female rates, as well as does life insurance (or did, then). Social Security tried to blame me for the "mistake," even though it would have required a specific application and documentation from me to make that change - which, of course, I did not provide, and they could not have had on file). Maybe I was just passing so well to the woman that day, I don't know. Sometimes, though, there are more important things than passing.

It behooves us to be diligent as we make changes throughout transitioning. In the case of life insurance, we won't be around to clean up any messes that our beneficiaries may be left to endure."

I guess it was obvious to the guy at Social Security that I didn't "pass" or then again, I don't remember if I "outed" myself by telling him I was transgender. It was five years ago now and on some days, I have a difficult time remembering last week. I just remember him saying he could change my name, not my gender. 

Of course too, I am under a different health system with Veteran's Administration health.  Under which if I ever experience problems with being transgender, there is a person/persons to call. 

So once again, there are many steps to consider when you are considering changing your legal gender markers.

Friday, January 8, 2021

Separation Anxiety

 It's never easy making the journey from one gender to another. I am biased but I think it is one of the most difficult things a human can do. 

Each of us has their own path they followed and fortunately I can share two ideas from Cyrsti's Condo readers who successfully Mtf gender transitioned.

The first comes from Paula: "I believe we go through a concentrated growing up process, those of us who transition later in life miss out on a female adolescence, we don't have benefit of either contemporaries or older women teaching us how to be women. we could observe from outside, we could watch but were never part of the sisterhood. In consequence we had a steep learning curve, I know I personally made many a teenage mistake, inappropriate hemlines, poor makeup, inappropriate personal interactions, all girls do the difference is I had to make these learning mistakes in my 50s! It can be a little embarrassing looking back on my early blog posts, the emphasis on clothes and makeup, all the photos but it is part of my process, part of my growing up, part of my history."

The second comes from Connie: "I've long held the theory that many trans women express their femininity, at least early on in their trans lives, based on what the male side of themselves find attractive. I'm not referring to autogynephilia, as this attraction is not necessarily sexual in nature. It may have something to do with separating one's female self from the male self, as well. That is, just as a trans woman may overcompensate to affect a more masculine facade while living in male-mode, she may overcompensate in her (idea of) femininity when in female-mode. That's may seem like bouncing from one caricature to the other, and, for me, was just not sustainable."

I too went through the separation phase of trying to please my former male self when it came to appearance. When I finally learned I should be dressing to blend and please other women, I finally was able to negotiate a feminine world much easier. 

Thanks to you both for your comments.


Sunday, December 20, 2020

Masculinity and Femininity

 I have written extensively here in Cyrsti's Condo concerning the terms "woman and man" are socialized terms and are simply an extension of "female and male." Here is another look from Addison J. Smith: (She/They)

"Masculinity and femininity are cultural concepts that change over time. They are something we can relate to but they don’t come from us. We learn these concepts. We see ourselves in others and we learn what it is to be like them. If you see yourself as a man, no matter what body type you have, you will want to learn what it means to be masculine as your culture currently defines it. If you see yourself as a woman, you will want to learn what it means to be feminine. We identify with a gender and learn to be that gender. It happens at such a young age that we don’t even realize we do this. Instead, we believe this learned behavior is something intrinsic to us."

Our identity comes from seeing others and knowing yourself through others. 

My example comes from when I first started to go out in the world and explore it as a transgender woman. Very quickly of course I was rejected by men because I had left the male club with all of it's inherent privilege's. Somehow I became part of a conversation between a couple men and was startled by the way I was treated. I had lost most of my intelligence it seemed. On the other hand I was accepted more or less by the cis women I encountered. Perhaps it was because I was reflecting their femininity back at them. I know it might be a difficult idea to consider and as a matter of fact, I didn't think much about it until I read Addison's post. Much of it was written about reflection between your perceived and actual gender. 

To this day, since I have not attempted any bottom surgeries at all, my actual biological gender is still male but my perceived gender is female. Obviously it took me years to come to this knowledge. I actually survived well in the male world and played the game as best as I could. I guess you could say I reflected well. 

I did it until it was impossible to do anymore. The gender stress was killing me literally. I drank myself to the point of suicide. 

It was about this time too, I learned the feminine image in the mirror meant nothing unless I could project it in a quality manner to the only gender which really mattered to me...women. 

Finally I will conclude this post with another Addison quote: 

"I don’t have a problem with masculinity (except the toxic kind), I’m simply not masculine. Masculinity is great for people who are masculine. Be masculine, have fun, just don’t be a jerk. I can’t say that I’m really drawn to be feminine in the popular sense, but if you know you’re feminine, go for it."

Friday, August 16, 2019

Gender Quiz

Yesterday, I went in for my pulmonary breathing test.

I arrived early, checked in at the kiosk and pulled out my phone to pass the time. Nobody gave me a second look.

As I sat there though, my regular Doctor appeared briefly and saw me. Since I wasn't supposed to see her, I was surprised when she came over to talk. She is very nice and I enjoyed talking to her quite a bit until...she stuck the dreaded "he word" into the conversation. For the life of me, I don't know why all of the sudden I am having such a miserable time being mis-gendered.

I have examined how I go about my prep work before I go out and don't think there is much of a difference. But why would someone call a person obviously wearing feminine clothes with breasts and wearing makeup a he?

I have always believed in the power of how a person projects their personal aura. Perhaps, with time, I have become more lackadaisical in public. I just assume most of the public accepts me as a feminine being.

Maybe I should spend more time channeling my inner female.

Then again, the great majority of people don't understand what it does to a transgender person to be mis-gendered. I know it can really destroy or make my day when I have achieved the lofty "she" status in a conversation.

One thing is for sure, the redneck woman glaring and staring at me on the way out didn't care about pronouns. She was just all ugliness.

Then again, you can't educate everyone.

Friday, September 9, 2016

A Different Potty Break?

As I read the beginning of this post, I have to admit I was totally taken aback from the direction it took. Here is an excerpt:

"I'm 5 foot 3 inches tall and under 105 pounds. My red curly hair goes down to the middle of my back. I have long eyelashes (they're natural, I swear) and I am usually wearing some sassy shirt with a sarcastic quip like "In Your Dreams Loser." I'm a size one in girl's jeans. My voice is soft. Anyone who meets me, but doesn't actually know me, would never question my gender. They would assume I'm female. But I'm not. I have a penis.
I'm not transgender, but I don't identify as a man either. To me gender is this limiting and negative social construct I want nothing to do with. I'm just me. I'm more like a woman in some ways and more like a man in others. But because I don't intend to transition or start the process to become a woman, I never question which bathroom I use. I use the men's.
And this is what happens:
A man comes in and sees me washing my hands. He looks as if he has been slapped. He backs up and looks at the door to make sure he's in the right place."
Now, before you want to jump to conclusions on "passing privilege" and the like, go here and read the rest of the post.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

If I was Transgender

Well I am of course!
I'm always surprised on how I approach the subject with myself and others.

Truthfully, I started to say I really don't think about the subject much but that's not true. I think while I'm mentally the same person that person is female. So I don't think about that. Purists would argue though how I can ever think I am female, transgender or not.  Essentially , if I think therefore I am.  It matters not what anyone else thinks. Right? So, I don't really think quite a bit about being internally transgender but  do planning  to make my external trans life easier. I keep close track of hormonal body changes, how long my hair is and even how much hair is left in my brush. I've fairly well adjusted to grooming routines which include extra cleansing, softening and moisturizing.

I can't say I have totally adjusted to being essentially an androgynous person if I'm not made up at all. It's still a shock to see what was left of my male self has essentially disappeared.
Ironically, this transgender lifestyle has caused me to be a long term planner for the first time in my life. I have  to think ahead to doctor's appointments, hormones and more. Is hair removal or facial surgery in my future? How about the possibility of living stealth?

If I was transgender and it was a quiet 3 AM, it was all so real!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

It's a Slippery Transgender Slope

Just when we think we are making real strides as transgender women, here comes a story from Iowa that demeans women everywhere trans or not.

You have probably heard the story of the dental hygienist who was fired sometime ago by a male dentist who said essentially :"she was too attractive." The case worked it's way to the Iowa Supreme court (all male) who upheld her termination. A few of the details in the termination included the role of the dentist's wife who also worked in the office as well as a few of the definite sexual harassment quotes from the Doc himself.

I suppose the "rad fems" would point out this case is a stark example of losing "male privilege" when we transition.  Then again if you have spent anytime in the world as a transgender woman- you had to know what you were walking into. Here are a few of the realities. (Be aware I'm writing in broad strokes you don't want me to write a thousand words here).

If you like it or not, you suffer an intelligence loss as a female. Questions all of the sudden get routed around you. Your space changes as you step aside for a guy to walk by and most surprising to me was how men reach over you and get too close. So DUH femme nazi's, most of us figure it comes with the territory and adapt. Blah, blah, blah... We trans folks are adaptable critters.

Every once in awhile though a story like the one in Iowa comes along which does graphically show how far women (either genetic or trans) still have to travel. Let's be careful out there girls. If you transition too well, not only do you have to fear for your safety on the streets- you will have to fear for your job too.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Looking Back and Forward

Following the weekend's intense activity, I finally have had an opportunity to reflect on life as I know it now.
Recapping just a bit, Saturday's burial of my outward male and emergence of my female self was intense to say the least. Sunday I sort of curled into a ball, Monday I worked diligently on all the projects I do and last night I went out for a drink to the place where much of my public coming out process happened.
I'm going to stop and quote a loving and giving quote from my Mom now: " Life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer you get to the end, the faster it goes". As "non frilly" as that quote may seem-it's true.

Last night, I thought back on all the times I went to this very busy upscale sports bar in various "experimental" outfits and wigs. I've told whomever will listen (and some who won't) I was very much a trial and error transition person. (mostly error) I was fairly certain this feminine direction I was heading was the correct one but I had to find out for sure. One of the those moments occurred where I was last night. Years ago I was sitting there and this incredibly warm sense of well being came over me.  No, it wasn't the beer and I didn't have to run out and buy a store bought vagina- I just knew I found my true self.

At any rate, the last five years have been one hell of a trip. I went back to the dusty archives to pass along an ancient post from Cyrsti's Condo, called Weekend Update.  I was interested to see how completely I was into the psychical aspect of the moment...shaving legs, clothes etc. I won't pretend to say I'm not into the psychical aspect of being a woman now but it ceases to be the all encompassing factor. I guess it's important to me to look as good as I can but it's not the defining factor of my femininity. Again, I have been so lucky to have learned from a close group of genetic female friends currently and in the past on what a woman is and isn't.

As I look forward to the time I have left on this world, I'm incredibly excited what is around the next corner for me on this journey.  I'm never so sure what dose of positive karma brought me to this point. I compare my life as a human and a transgender person to an old school pin ball machine. Don't we all play this game?   Five silver balls and we are done- game over-see ya!  As hard as we try, we try to aim the silver balls and hope for big points. Skill is one thing though but what about luck and destiny? If you know those answers-please can I talk to you!!!!!

So looking forward, I'm hoping to have at least one or two balls left to play...and have as much fun as karma will let me!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Shopping with the Stars

First off, Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.
Hopefully you have friends and family you can share thanks with. Please take it from me - never take it for granted. Of course there are the usual football games on Thanksgiving Day but the real competition begins the next day. Black Friday!
It's the biggest shopping day of the year and is primarily associated with the feminine part of the population. To many women, it's a rite of passage and a prime opportunity to bond with their "sisters" without male intervention.

While I haven't (yet) experienced the group estrogen shopping binge, I have explored the waters of Black Friday on my own. Like anything else in the transgender culture it wasn't easy.

I worked my way up to the super shopping day in my formative cross dressing years. Quickly, shopping became a wonderful combination of discovery and interaction for me with the world. I learned most sales clerks were mostly interested in selling me something, giving me tips and some were even intrigued by meeting "a person like me." As time passed I learned to "pass" to and couldn't wait to add Black Friday to my list of achievements. As luck would have it, my work schedule made that very difficult but finally the big day came.

"Reasonably" early, I put on my best jeans, softest sweater and flats to conquer the masses of the shopping world. With my 'toned down' makeup and hair I was fairly sure I wouldn't have many problems. What I didn't understand was not many other shoppers would have noticed anyhow! The malls and stores I went to were so full of women doing their version of competitive shopping, they probably wouldn't have cared if a Martian was shopping with them. As long the Martian woman didn't beat them to a deal.

Didn't buy much that day. Just walked, watched and enjoyed being a girl in the world.
Looking into the future, I'm not so sure I will ever experience (or desire) the estrogen shopping bond with any of my genetic women friends. They aren't really into the shopping binges and I really have an aversion to pushy crowds. But if you have never been to Black Friday as a girl, be sure to put it on your trans bucket list**!

**Bucket List is a list of things you want to do be you "kick the bucket" (die).

Sunday, September 30, 2012

No Gender At All Part Two

For those of you who have visited Cyrsti's Condo for awhile, you will know the respect I have for Sherri Lynne who is a transitioning transgender therapist who actually works with trans patients.
Her latest post actually revolves around her visit to the recent Southern Comfort Conference. As I read on though, the post actually went into a portion of the subject in my End of Men topic:

" I heard the attitude shared that many younger people at the conference philosophically don't like the idea of having a gender identity at all. They identify as gender queer or other similar labels and they would deny everyone their own right to a gender identity as male or female in a society of their own design. I find it interesting that they would segregate themselves and impose a societal code that denies others of their own gender identity. You see this theme in much of feminist academic writing and in the presentations these individuals give at workshops. They want to impose the use of new language in the use of pronouns that deny the existence of gender identity. Ironically, these folks seem to be a small proportion of those in the gender community. I can never see myself identifying as anything than "female" or "woman" and would feel oppressed by a society that denies me my own identity, much as these individuals feel oppressed by a society that expects them to have a gender identity of either male or female. I find that rather ironic that they would choose to subject others to the same oppression they seek to be freed from."

Read more from Sherri Lynne here!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

When Invention Meets Reality

What would Thomas Edison say and how did the famous inventor come into this?
I have written several times of the chats I have with the person who has known me the longest as a transgender or cross dresser back in the day. He went deep into the closet and obviously I didn't. At times I think he works way too hard to justify his decision. None of my business until:
Recently he mentioned inventing a female persona. (Not specifically aimed at me.) I replied "what if it is not a invention?"
Obviously I believe a transgender or transsexual person is not inventing a gender. They are born with it.
Which brings up another question I asked myself. When did I know when the feminine me was not an invention.  Of course I can not come up with the exact day but as I have written before, I do remember when the realization swept over me I was in the right place.
The sensation was one of a deep realization that all was right with the world. No more in fighting.
I supposed you can say at that moment, I knew I wasn't an invention.
Reading my blog, you all know I'm overjoyed at the realization which most likely had been with me all the time. I was born into my transgender reality.
My worry is my friend will spend the rest of his days in the futile attempt to rationalize his reality.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Female Bonding

Every now and then I will run into a genetic female who wants to chat about my transgender status.
At some point in the conversation, she will want to know what I think are the biggest changes I have been through and what I have felt about them. Know she will. It's all good. Just bonding with the girls.
The answers are easy.  We go down the feminine checklists of skin, breasts, moods etc.
Then the fun starts. The next round of questions involves periods, bloating, and hot flashes. AND
it's all well and good to feminize your body BUT what about not experiencing monthly periods, bloating, PMS etc.
What can I say?
My simple answer is "only females bleed".
Never have had a menstrual period...never will. It is a deal breaker with them? Not usually if they are grounded human beings. This point is always a great spot to toss in-  gender is between the ears and sex is between the legs factoid and a female is not necessarily a woman.
Bottom line: Has it made my life easier or harder than theirs since I didn't bleed? Can't tell you.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Life as a "Girly- Girl"

One of the most volatile issues of life in the trans lane has to resolve around one of the most basic functions of them all-the rest room.
We have had our discussions here in Cyrsti's Condo leading mainly to unresolvable disputes and hurt feelings. Comments have ranged from who the hell cares to stay the hell out of there.  Some think the room should stay the revered sanctuary for the genetic gender one was born with- or paid to be part of.
Don't want to re hash all of that again.
What I do want to bring up are the girly girls who slyly want to comment how proud they are of their rest room permit by praising the pristine condition of all the women's rooms they frequent.
You probably have read my posts in the past just saying I'm not much of a girly girl. In fact, early in my life when I was coming out of the cross dressing closet, I was roundly chided for wearing slacks or women's jeans at all.  Where were my frilly dresses?
So I figured my rest room ideas once again placed me in transgender minority. (Surprise, Surprise!)
On top of that, I worked in the commercial food industry for years and I saw my share of trashed women's rooms. Or the concerts, sporting events and other public venues I have been to when women invaded the men's facilities.  You know, I just didn't feel that violated and did not call the cops.
So, I never buy into the pristine female concepts.
Of course I do accept the biological fact that men have to aim and don't clean up but don't tell me it is an inclusive male trait.
I mean were you ever subjected to a Tyra Banks toilet seat rant? "Me thinks" she wasn't talking about the men's room.
"Me also thinks" the trans peeps who view the women's room as yet another pristine perk of their transition just don't get out enough.

Friday, August 3, 2012

I am Her, She is Me

Several times recently I have seen a person at a grocery store I go to all the time who I can not read the gender. As true of an androgynous person as I have seen for awhile.
No big deal of course but of course I started to think about how I view the public.
I used to constantly be on the outlook for another cross dresser. Have to tell you, without a lot of luck. Either the girls were very good in public, there weren't very many of them or I wasn't so good. Trans-dar?
How have things changed?
Well, really I don't care as much.
Let me see if I can explain it.
I have an old friend who I have mentioned a couple times who was one of the initial cross dressers I met back in the day when I was opening the closet door. He stayed in the cross dressing closet and of course I didn't.
We were discussing the "validation" part of presenting female. Then as now, having a guy on your arm as a "prop" is a very desirable goal. That's the easy part-in principle.
The "what ifs" come quickly.
What if you present as a reasonably desirable female and the man you are out with turns out to be just a little more than just a prop?  That little good night kiss becomes more than just validation.
At this point, my friend really had no idea of what that would be like and that's fine. He called the experience a morph of sorts and attempted to attach more of a sexual importance to it.
I compared the experience of morphing from a cross dresser to a transgender person with him to falling in love. If it happens-you know it.
I can almost tell you exactly where it happened and I can't remember what happened yesterday.
Finally, let me take it a step farther.
Using this process, I can work through the transsexual morph in my mind.  At whatever point in their life a true transsexual comes to a true realization of who they really are sexually. The transsexual's life becomes so much more complex than mine. TS's need to match the sexual and the mental  in their bodies- the ultimate morph.
By this time you are thinking "Cyrsti" this is all well and good but just where the hell are you going with this?
My point is of course I would notice an occasional cross dresser as would most folks.
It's just now, I feel so at home in the world...maybe I wouldn't?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Defining "Transgender"

Imagine my surprise when I saw the story about the military gay pride march in San Diego. Sure, there a plenty of gay pride march stories which have absolutely no bearing on my life as a transgender woman. The surprise came when Yahoo News ran a supporting story on new transgender diagnostic terms.
I don't pretend to be any sort of an expert in psychiatric terminology- unlike a person such as Sherri Lynn but this article got my attention.
It seems to me the new diagnostic terms being debated could take the transgender community out from under the mental illness tag we have lived with. (That's was my first stop at the Veteran's Administration.)
Before I pass along a few excerpts from the article, I need to mention the nation's psychiatric establishment is  working to overhaul its diagnostic manual for the first time in almost two decades. This process just doesn't happen very often.
Being labeled mentally deficient is bad enough and that is only the beginning.  Read on:
"The most symbolic change under consideration so far for the manual's fifth edition, known as the DSM-V for short, is a new name for Gender Identity Disorder, the diagnosis now given to adults, adolescents and children with "a strong and persistent cross-gender identification." In the manual's next incarnation, individuals displaying "a marked incongruence between one's experienced/expressed gender and assigned gender" would be diagnosed instead with "Gender Dysphoria," a term that comes from the Greek word for emotional distress.
While the shift may seem purely semantic, switching the emphasis from a disorder that by definition all transgender people possess to a temporary mental state that only some might possess marks real progress, according to Dana Beyer, a retired eye surgeon who helped the Washington Psychiatric Society make recommendations for the chapter on "Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders."
"A right-winger can't go out and say all trans people are mentally ill because if you are not dysphoric, that can't be diagnosed from afar," Beyer said. "It no longer matters what your body looks like, what you want to do to it, all of that is irrelevant as far as the APA goes."

Historically, what is happening does resemble what the gay community went through years ago:

" But while there are parallels, achieving what the APA did for gays four decades ago is more complicated for people who identity as transgender, an umbrella term that encompasses transsexuals, cross-dressers and others whose self-concepts otherwise do not align with the male or female label they were given at birth. Unlike sexual orientation, the accepted protocols for treating many patients expressing profound discomfort with their given gender call for medical intervention."

I have taken you as far as I can on this extremely important and complex subject. For more go here.
One final comment.  A huge debt of gratitude to Dana Beyer and so many other transgender and transsexual men and women who did not go stealth and decided to make a difference!

Sink or Swim

Image from Trans Wellness Event.  Jessie Hart Archives.  Many times when I first entered the world as a new cross dresser or femininized mal...