Showing posts with label gender dysphoria. euphoria. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gender dysphoria. euphoria. Show all posts

Sunday, May 19, 2024

Dsyphoria is Never Pretty

Image from Jen Theodore on UnSplash.

It was years before I knew what gender dysphoria was all about and what it meant to me.

Essentially what it meant was understanding the depth of how far I wanted to go towards my feminization. I started out innocently I thought, similar to most of you, with explorations into Mom's wardrobe. and makeup. I wonder if she even noticed the fascination I had watching her put on her makeup. 

All along, I wondered what was going on with me and was I the only one who felt the same as I did. On those days, my gender dysphoria ran deep even though I still had no idea of what my future held. I looked in the mirror and saw a male even though on some days I felt decidedly I wanted to be a girl. In fact, if you had asked me then what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have said a successful woman. Sadly, there were almost no successful transgender women to model myself after, so I internalized my feelings and carved out a very tentative life as a male. In fact painful internalizing became a theme in my life and led to further gender dysphoria.

All of a sudden, as my life progressed and more gender information became available, my dysphoria became more in focus. I could see what the problem still was but I still wasn't in any position to do anything about it except cross dress my life away. I knew deep down, I did not want to harm anyone, especially myself. However, when I still saw my male self in the mirror in the morning, harm still came. The more I attempted to cross dress my dysphoria away, the quicker and stronger it seemed to return just wrecking my mental health.

The only thing which kept me on any sort of a feminine path was when I expressed my female side to myself, I felt so natural. I felt from that reason alone, I was doing the right thing which in turn positioned me in direct opposition with my male self and increased my dysphoria to the max. Because my male self was fighting back with all the tools he had. In those days, he held all the cards, making life miserable for me which sadly I passed along to those people closest to me. I did everything I could to relieve the stress and live a pleasurable life. 

As fashion and makeup became easier for me as far as going out and entering the world as a novice transgender woman but more difficult when I needed to re-enter the world as a guy. My job did not make it any easier because I was in a very male dominated profession. I would do quite a bit of day dreaming of my other life while I was working in my reality. I even was quietly embarrassed when someone would mistakenly refer to me as a woman when I was working as a man. I figured my "aura" was overpowering female on those days and tried to project female more when I was out in the world as a transgender woman. I believe projecting my gender became an important accessory to be added to present successfully. Which I still do.

Still my dysphoria persisted and does to this day. Some days I wake up and sneak a peek in the mirror and see a feminine person which makes me happy. Other days, I see the same old male person I had ever been and become depressed. From there I have learned to take the middle road, or nothing is as good or bad as it seems including my dysphoria. 

At my advanced age, I seriously doubt I will ever be finished with my transgender dysphoria. Since I have an aversion to any extreme facial femininization surgeries, there will be no radical moves to change what I have to face the world. Dysphoria be damned, I will do the best I can.

Monday, April 29, 2024

Take Your Pleasure Seriously

 

Ohio River image from the
Jessie Hart archives. 


For a gender dysphoric person, the scale seems to be balanced against experiencing any gender euphoria.

 In my case, destiny allowed just enough gender euphoria for me to continue down my gender journey. As I questioned what I was doing, the "why" of it never really came into question. I just knew deep down I was on a process I could not control. It would control me. Deep down inside, regardless of any doubts I may have had dissolved when I felt so natural when I was dressed as a girl. In other words, I was home when I was away from my unwanted heavy male self. 

Still I persisted and tried to find my way in the male universe, I was taking my pleasure seriously when I was dressed head to toe as a woman. I found following one dream (feminine) didn't mean giving up on the other (masculine.) I often wonder, if there was any help available to me back in the pre-internet dark ages would I have had the courage to seek it out. One problem was back in those days we who existed with gender issues were still considered to be mentally ill. Which I knew I wasn't.

The gender unrest I lived through and with was to continue until much later in life. Nearly a half a century to be exact, I gave up any hope of ever returning to a male life and never looked back. Riding a wave of gender euphoria was something I had never experienced before. Living as my authentic self was amazing and even though my male self was still fighting to be recognized. He was to be denied and my life went full circle back to the earliest days of wondering what gender I really was.

By going full circle, I had a lot of ground to cover. In many ways, the world caught up with me. I was able to follow the progression of a term which would describe me and in a very small way enabled me to be a part of a transgender community. Along the way many things changed. Primarily in the terminology which began with what was transgender anyhow and went all the way to the LGBT label which has grown these days to include other letters which includes other communities. Including gender fluid people which on occasion, described how I perceived myself all those years ago. 

During my full circle journey, I learned to take my pleasure seriously. Different than most transgender women and one I don't necessarily recommend, I learned the so called "ropes" of being a single woman (trans or not) in alcohol serving venues. All of the sudden, I found myself in situations where I was the single woman. The positive side of taking my pleasure seriously was when I discovered a small community I could thrive in. The negative side came when I was approached by intoxicated men not in control of themselves. Early on, when I needed some sort of protection, I used my cell phone. Making a big show of acting as if I was talking to another person on the phone who was coming to join me and fill the empty seat beside me. Of course after I gained my small group of lesbian friends, I was nearly completely insulated from the world of men. Also my ideas of sexuality were determined for good. I had way more interaction with women than I ever had as a guy.

Along the way, my new found gender euphoria as I learned to live as a transgender woman began to put my unwanted male life behind me, I had managed to live through the down points in my life and come full circle into a new day. I don't know if the ups have ever equaled the downs but at the least I was never bored.  

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Code Red Moment

Image from Alexander Grey
on UnSplash

I remember like is was yesterday the night years ago when my life changed forever.

It was the evening when I decided to journey out in the world as a transgender woman for the first time instead of just trying to get by as a cross dresser or transvestite. I knew I was playing with labels but the whole process was important to me. 

First, I was so terrified I would fail and be subjected to more of the public ridicule I had experienced in my recent past. Even though I was relatively a novice in trying to present responsibly as a woman in front of the world, I still knew I had to make a concerted effort to do my best to blend in with the other women I would be facing when I went out. 

I chose where I wanted to go carefully. I knew that every night around eight or nine o'clock many single women would gather at a TGIF Fridays after work at a nearby upscale mall where they worked. If you are not familiar with a Friday's, it was one of the first venue's to welcome and provide a safe environment for single women in the country. 

Up to that time, my gender life was similar to riding a "teeter totter" on a kids playground. One day I was up with gender euphoria but the next day I was in the depths of my gender dysphoria. Desperately trying to find a way out until the "teeter totter" reversed and moved up again. The process dominated my life and made it very difficult to lead a so called normal life. 

On the night in question, I was determined to make a statement and help my gender euphoria. I began by picking out a fashionable black pants suit I had found in my size at a local thrift store and paired it with a sensible pair of women's flats they might wear following a long day in heels on the job. I applied my best makeup and longish blond wig and I thought I was ready to attack the world...or at least a small portion of it. To top it all off, my anxiety level was at an all time high as I traveled the twenty five minute trip to arrive at the venue. Once I did arrive I think I must have spent twenty minutes in my car trying to calm my nerves before I gathered enough courage to go in. I think my male self was becoming frightened the beginning of the end was coming for him.

As I went in, I had a small amount of knowledge on the venue I was going to. In addition to my wife and I going there, I had worked for a chain of competing venues for several years. So, I knew, if I could get past the hostess stand in good shape and secure a seat at the bar (if one was available) I had a chance of succeeding. When I did all of that and was able to breathe again, I was actually able to relax and enjoy myself and then start thinking I was in a "Code Red" lifetime moment. Deep down I knew, my life could never be the same again as I had arrived on the successful threshold of being a full time transgender woman. My male self was aware to he was in deep trouble.

From that moment forward I was able to go back to the Fridays and establish myself as some sort of a regular. Even though I never thought I presented completely as a cis-woman, I knew I was easy to remember. Back in those days, transgender women and men were just becoming slightly better known in the world. In addition I never caused any trouble and tipped well. In a couple places where I became a regular I even think the venue valued my business as a sign of their diversity.    

Whatever the case, the code red had occurred and the teeter totter began to stay in the upward position which meant my old male self was never coming back.

The Gender Waltz

Image from Clarisse Meyer on UnSplash Since the beginning of time, the two binary genders have done a special dance with each other.  Being ...