Showing posts with label transition. Show all posts
Showing posts with label transition. Show all posts

Saturday, March 23, 2019

The End to a Gender Transition?

At my hairdresser yesterday, she asked me a question her transgender son brought up...does a transgender transition ever end. Her son felt as if it would never stop primarily because he would have to take hormones for the rest of his life. I agreed with that plus added in for me I wondered if my Trans-PTSD would ever go away.

An example happened today. Being Saturday, I went with Liz to two of her martial arts classes and went to the grocery store. Going into today and still loving my latest hair do, I thought I was doing my best to look good.

It must have worked, because everywhere I went, I didn't have any problems. Well, actually, I did have a problem, myself. No matter how hard I tried, once again I couldn't relax and live in the moment. All of a sudden, I was no better off than when I was a beginning cross dresser so many years ago.

I still don't know how long it will take for it to ever go away. Perhaps it never will. Maybe living all those years as a guy will always imprint me.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Rest in Peace

Last week, we lost two celebrities to suicide. Kate Spade of the hand bag fame and famous chef Anthony Bourdain. I was never in the financial position to purchase a "Kate Spade" bag, but, especially after my career in the restaurant business, I loved Bourdain. To the point of reading one of his books.
Kate Spade

Needless to say, I was in shock, then again not so much.
Anthony Bourdain

I have my own suicidal demons which are addressed with my therapist when they get too loud. Sufficient to say, my demons will be brought up this Tuesday during my next therapist visit. I am betting I will have to bring up the fact I am entranced not so much of the whys of their suicides (which I understand) but of the hows. The problem is I have learned to cover for my demons over the years.

Some even assume since I have been able to Mtf gender transition, it is all I live for.

Naturally, suicide is a very personal and complex issue and it is easier for me to write about it than speak to anyone about it. Plus, I know I have almost instantaneous access to various suicide hotlines. Including a Trans Vet Hot Line.

Also, in a sense, I suffer from going through three very personal suicides when I was younger, so I know the cost involved to the ones you leave behind. The guilt just builds.

Finally, thanks to all for reading my vent. I am OK and it means a lot I can write about something this personal.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Shock and Awe

A week ago, I began to transition my massive finances from one bank to another.

All went well, I thought with the very young "personal banker" who set my new account up.

The problems started though, when he asked if I had ever done business with the bank before. I said yes and the system took over.

As he worked out all the forms, they all had my correct new name on all the paper work. Naively, I was so proud of myself, until...

A week later my debit cards arrived in the mail. As I opened them, imagine my disappointment  when they came imprinted with my old male name!

I recoiled in shock. I learned the hard way again how much I never wanted to see that name again.

I will be heading back to the bank today!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Duke Leads the Way

Recently I noticed Duke opened one of the few centers for gender-related disorders (in the Southeast),on July 15.

Hunter Schafer sketches in her art journal Wednesday at University of North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem where she is a junior. Hunter transitioned from male to female as a teenager with help from doctors at Duke. A new center for gender-related disorders, located within the Duke Children’s Hospital & Health Center Child and Adolescent Gender Care facility, opened July 15.
Not surprisingly, parents like Mac and Katy Schafer of Raleigh say they don’t know what they would have done without the help they found at Duke. 

Their daughter Hunter, who transitioned from male to female as a teenager, needed hormone treatments, and without Duke there would have been nowhere else to go.

The center was founded by Deanna Adkins, the endocrinologist who treated Hunter. The Center for Child and Adolescent Gender Care, which opened in July, is the first of its kind in North Carolina.

The post goes on to mention the extremely high suicide transgender rate and the fact puberty blockers have been found to be reversible- to give a young trans person the chance to make a quality decision on a huge issue!
Read more here.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Steppin Up and Out

Many of you Cyrsti's Condo readers know of my belief I am largely successful in my mtf transgender transition efforts because of Momma Karma.  What I pay forward into the community comes back three fold to help me.

If this latest outreach from the Dayton, Ohio LGBTQ organization works, I will have a chance to take another nice dose of positive karma.

Recently, the group has noticed the "T" in their name was silent and they knew very little about us and more importantly, wanted to reach out to their perception of a growing, largely invisible community of transgender women and men.  Wow!  (The Dayton LGBT group was partially responsible for bringing Laverne Cox to the area.)

So, where the deal stands now is, the group is trying to put together an initial brainstorming session with three of us. The final goal is to provide support locally to trans individuals.

Now all I have to do is find a brain that fits!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Will You Take Half a Man?

With the recent health family crisis behind me (and yet another laid to rest),  it's time to backtrack with all of you here in Cyrsti's Condo about how I fared during a recent coming out with a long time female family member.

To start with she is the "double nickle", 55 years old and was a former "wild child" well into her 30's,  married for a short time but for the most part, shopping around.  I always had a real respect for her sense of style and femininity. She was a woman who would always make sure she looked her best in case she met a new man at the store.

It's curious now how the tables have changed, and while I don't think they have to for her, that's her call not mine.  I believe she has more "charge" remaining in the batteries than she thinks.

Coming out to her was simply a matter of being in the right time at the right place-even though for the wrong reason. (The health crisis with her Mom.)  I have written how she took it rather matter of factly, with healthy doses of curiosity.

I am sort of like the dog who has rarely been beat, when it comes to my "Coming Out" experiences. I simply haven't experienced much negativity but then again, I haven't needed to come out to a large group...another story.

So when I came out to her, I just wasn't expecting the shock and awe I have so rarely seen. (Didn't get it again.)  So, being the cynical bitch I can be, when she said yesterday she needed a man to come along with her as she worked on tying up the loose ends of her Mom's final expenses, etc. I said, "will a half a man do?" She laughed with me and started back in on the biggest question she has with me being transgender - why am I with a female partner?  Don't all transgender women want a man and isn't that one of the reasons we transition? Why would I want to be a woman and not want a man? Another story.

I told her while that is true in the majority of the MtF trans cases it seems, as always, I'm destined to walk a slightly different path which we will discuss here later in Cyrsti's Condo.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

A Blast from the Past

As I was "cramming" to get another chapter of my "Stiletto's on Thin Ice" book completed today, I was working on a section with a very unremarkable name- "Transition."  I have always wondered how each of us seemed to have our own personal "switch" as we decided to go down this road.  Some stayed as cross dressers and others went the route to SRS.  Why?

I'm certainly not smart enough to figure it out but do have assumptions like everyone else.  Today, as I was remembering back to the early Tri-Ess meetings I went to in the late 1970's, what I observed and how I thought I fit with the others around me.  Ironically, it's still tough to figure it out. Finally, I came to the conclusion that somewhere along the line back then, I walked two separate paths.  One path was living in the mirror as a girl and the other was more of a complex look into how a genetic woman lived.  I remembered too, the cross dressers in the room who I called the "A Listers". The small group just knew they were the most attractive critters in the room and they were.  Something was strangely missing though from how they acted. Sort of like you left the pepper out of your favorite recipe.  They just weren't real.  

Also,  there were always a couple of women attending who for all the world looked like one of the genetic spouses who came along but they weren't. Transgender or transsexual terms were just beginning to slip in to our vocabulary and it took me decades to get it through my thick noggin' - that was them.   The "A listers" on the other hand, went over the top to look the part but just quite couldn't tap into their feminine side-because there wasn't any.  I knew one in particular who (as she called it) went down the slippery slope of beginning electrolysis, hormones and then even SRS.  She turned out to be beautiful- but miserable.

So, I don't know, maybe for what ever reason, she never progressed past the mirror side of being feminine into the real world?  I think I did for a couple of reasons.  The most important one was my wife kept chiding me for knowing nothing about being a woman.  Never one to back away from a challenge, I began to do it which leads me to my second point.  When I did check out the "other side" I liked it a lot and it felt real.  

My problem was I could see both paths from the one I was on which led to the tremendous gender turmoil I experienced.  Being more stubborn than smart led me to do the natural male thing-internalize and fight.  I never do much crying over the past but the historian in me tells me there were certain points I really could have learned from.  Talking with the "real girl's" at the Tri Ess Meetings would have been soooo much more beneficial than wishing I could be an "A-lister."

In a companion post, we will discuss what determines how badly you want to flip the gender switch.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Winds of Change

One of the reasons I like living here in the Midwest is the fact we have seasons. While I'm the first to whine about the heat of summer or the cold of winter, I'm making the deal just to get to fall.

As the lush greens turn to the browns, reds and golds of the landscape around me, any sort of wind at all reminds me of primeval change.

Sure, I can tie in the change to my transgender transition but in reality the shift in the world around me goes so much deeper.

Every year at this time though, I do take a second to consider the gender changes I have been through and those that are yet to come.  As sure as the squirrels in my back yard are beginning to harvest the newly fallen walnuts and the drug dealers down on the corner are sporting their new hoodies, it's time for me to take stock of my sweaters and long sleeved tops.

It's ironic how the priorities of the season have changed. Most of you know I'm a sports fanatic of sorts and a football fan above all else but now I have to consider what I'm wearing to watch The Ohio State Buckeyes or the Cincinnati Bengals with my friends. As a transgender girl, I always have to try to make sure I'm doing the style gig a bit better than the genetic girls - if I can.  At the least, cause some of them step up their game too.

The fun part is now that fall really is just beginning. The true colors on the tree's haven't arrived yet and all the fall festivals are still around the corner with "nummers" such as home made apple butter. Better yet the season wraps up with Halloween and my chance to attend the **Cincinnati Witches Ball as a "Zombie Bride" -compliments of my very talented girlfriend.

So, like most of you I have spent my life waiting for the "other shoe to drop".  I have always preferred to call it waiting for "the other foot to fall."

This year I have been in touch with "Momma Karma" to see if the foot can "fall" another time. Preferably after fall is over.

**The "mission" of the Witches Ball:
Our mission: to hold one kick-ass costume party each and every year, with the most fabulous, talented performers we can find, gifted readers in our divination room, vendors with the best wares....raffles, a costume contest, moderately insane pirates, & steampunkers. (As well as raise money for a wonderful cause in the process!)


Thursday, August 1, 2013

Success in Ohio

From the Columbus, Ohio Dispatch:

"Returning to work after a long vacation can be a shock, but when some top brass at the Columbus marketing company Resource came back from the beach last year, a true surprise was in store. Shelly Moss, a creative director at the company, had some big news for HR director Jamie Barcelona and company founder Nancy Kramer: Moss is transgender and was transitioning into a man who thereafter would use the first name Decker. “My initial reaction was, ‘Wow! This is a day I thought I’d never have,'" Barcelona said. “ Then you instantly go into, ‘How am I going to handle this? What do I need to do?'"

"Decker (center)"
At Resource, that was definitely OK. For decades, the marketing company has been in the forefront in dealing with such issues. Resource was one of the first in Ohio to offer same-sex partner benefits; and in 2007, Kramer testified in front of Congress in support of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, or ENDA. This revelation was entirely new ground, however, and Moss didn’t know if anyone had ever presented a similar case. Legally, he was in somewhat murky territory. Transgender status is not explicitly protected under federal or Ohio anti-discrimination laws, said Jim Petrie, chairman of Bricker & Eckler’s labor & employment practice group. However, “the U.S. 6th Circuit has held that persons identified as transgender may be protected under Title VII if the employer discriminates against them based on their inability to conform to sex stereotypes,” Petrie said. “Moreover, a Columbus city ordinance expressly prohibits employers from discriminating against a person because of his/her gender identity or expression."

Interestingly,  as most of us know who navigate society as a transgender person, what does the term mean to others?  Barcelona echoed that thought and said  the biggest thing was understanding what does transgender mean and going from there.

As always, there is more and you can read it here.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Incredible Trans Video

I think this is an outstanding transgender transition video because of the emphasis on lifestyle as well as appearance changes:


Monday, June 24, 2013

Anger and the Trans Girl

No big secret as you turn the gender "corner" anger issues or "anger management" if you will change dramatically.   In fact during my transition, it's a major issue for me.

Right or wrong, I played fairly effectively in the "macho sandbox" and I'm the first to say it cost me dearly-but another subject.

Looking back on the experience, I have labeled the male power structure as power one as opposed to the uber effective feminine passive aggressive. Reasonably early in life a male begins to sort out his place in the power grid. He could be a one, two or three. For simplicity, three's stay put.  Due to strength, intelligence, athletic ability or looks-they probably are stuck there and know it. Nothing wrong with that-not making value judgement.  Two's on the other hand can possess and combination of any of the power attributes I mentioned plus the ambition to challenge the front running number ones.  As with any species, it's a simple survival of the fittest basic.

I played in that number 2 sandbox and I have had a difficult time switching from a more direct confrontational view of stress situations with other humans to a passive aggressive.  Very simply put, no I can't (and never did) punch you in the face.  Instead let me smile ever so sweetly and figure out a way to intellectually punish you.

Both power grids define the genders and to a large degree define why on so many levels males and females have a difficult time understanding the other. Each bring the "tools" they have to work with to the table.  When my two young grandson's are off in the corner going crazy on each other, my 12 year old grand daughter watches and listen's to my daughter say: "they are just being boys, stay out of it". That's all good until a group of her friends come over and the battle lines are drawn again-for so many different reasons.

As humans I guess we have been blessed and cursed to witness this gender dynamic. But witnessing the power grids doesn't mean we can do anything about them. We all have to make our way through life the best we can. As transgender folk though we do have a unique chance to sit the middle fence and have a better understanding of how the gender grids work.

I have to say  my perch on the fence has been hard to maintain.

I guess  De Niro  said it best in Taxi Driver :  "You talkin' to me?"

Friday, June 21, 2013

Beauty Queen Dreams

According to the Daily News - Yet another transgender woman is competing for a beauty pageant crown.

On Saturday in London,   Dani, from Barry, South Wales will be competing along side 11 other contestants in the Miss Diamond beauty pageant.

"Just three years ago, Dani was called Daniel, it wasn't until she was 18-years-old that she made the decision to leave her life as a man behind and embrace life as a woman. But Dani, a manager at a nightclub in Camden, admits that while she didn't leave her male life behind until she was 18, the transition from man to woman began at an early age. "

For more on the story go here.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Transition Emotions

This video on the Cyrsti's Condo big screen showcases the emotions of a young transgender woman before and during HRT. Check out Michelle:

Friday, June 7, 2013

Coming Out to Yourself

What do all of these comments have in common with me?

"Just what we need, another old guy on hormones."
"If you waited until you were 60 to start transitioning, you are not a real transgender person."
"Isn't it too late in life to transition?"

What they have in common is all of them have been messaged to me here in Cyrsti's Condo.

Everyonce in a while, I find a very well presented answer:

"Realization that one is trans can take anywhere from a few moments to several decades. Usually, trans people have an inkling early on in their lives that their assigned gender feels out of sync with their bodies. The self-realization process is extremely complicated. The human mind does its best to help us survive, which can translate into triggering intense denial. Because of societal constraints, it is common for a person to try to ignore signs pointing toward transgenderism, whether consciously or unconsciously."

This is only one of several enlightening, educational thoughts on transgender women and men from a Huffington Post article here

Not so incidentally, the page also includes this link
to Outserve Magazine and a chance meeting between a transgender vet and  President Obama.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Keeping Abreast of the Situation

To have or not to have - is a huge question in the transgender as well as the mainstream cultures. Specifically, trans women can't wait to experience the thrill of developing their own breasts trans men the exact opposite. None of this is a big secret.

The Times of India though recently ran an article called "The Booby Trap". Interestingly "The Booby Trap" starts with the recent news of Angelina Jolie's New York Times piece on how she underwent a double mastectomy to reduce her risk of developing breast cancer and then begins to look at the process from a transgender man's point of view. Here's an excerpt:

"Selvam, a 27-year-old transgender male from Tamil Nadu, lists the usual ruses preoperative men like him have to resort to conceal their breasts so they can pass off as men. "I started binding my breasts with bandage from the age of 18, but it restricted blood circulation and bruised my skin," he says. "I've now started wearing tight vests and multiple layers of clothing." He has also fashioned a prosthetic penis of cloth to make the semblance more credible. "There are some transmen I know who drink a lot of beer to develop a beer belly that will make the breasts less prominent."

This is just a short look into how "the other trans half" is subjected to the physical pain of transition. I can only say- with my very brief knowledge of having my own developing breasts, binding them would be no walk in the park. All of this proves once again trans men or trans women are so different but so similar in our paths we are taking.

To take a look at the rest of the article, go here. In the meantime, lets talk about that "beer belly"!

Sunday, May 26, 2013


Alice, thanks so much for your comment on my "makeover" yesterday:

" Cyrsti, you look fantastic ! It must have been an empowering experience, you sound as if you totally enjoyed your makeover." Alice.

First of all thanks for the wonderful compliment! Secondly, I began to think about the "empowerment" experience you mentioned. Of course in the estrogen laden room yesterday, I guess just being allowed to play was cool even if there were sales potentials for the organizers. That's all good too! I love capitalism.

Alice, you are right I do have a healthy dose of empowerment following the day.  The most difficult part of my life right now continues to be the in between place I'm in with the world. Of course nearly a year and half ago, I was able to put the wigs away and wear my own hair. My own hair was  hugely empowering and now I'm faced with an equally big place-body changes. It has taken me awhile due to small dosages and HRT interruptions along the way. But now I feel another stage of changes coming along with my skin and body and how I relate it to the picture.

Along my transition process, I have been able to glimpse my inner girl here and there in the mirror.  Regardless of any value judgement of beauty queen good looks, or glamour shots or whatever- the picture was a straight up picture of me taken from Alisha's phone.  Bottom line was I could see my inner girl more than ever before in my life. Even I was floored.

So Alice, I do like this feminine empowerment.  Future makeup sessions will be much less scary and much more fun and any skill I can development with my public skills will be huge!

Thanks for the comment!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Follow the Bouncing Hormones

I hate being in the "I think" mode as far as my HRT meds go.
As I passed along to you recently, I was making my medication transition again between my endocrinologist and the Veteran's Administration.
As far as I can tell by talking to my VA nurse is the new prescriptions have been filled and are in the system.

That should be all the system means another possible ten days before the new estrogen and spiro can get to me. Plus I will have to wait until the meds get here until I can tell for sure if the new dosages are correct.

I'm having a problem with the old prescriptions cancelling out until the new ones will start.
While this process sorts itself out, I'm carefully monitoring my dwindling supplies of both meds. On the good side,  I seem to have a couple nurses in both offices on my side I can communicate with. So "I think" all is okay.

In the meantime the spiking up or down of my hormones has not made me a happy camper the last couple of days. I even had a fairly decent hot flash yesterday which is tied into hormonal imbalance.

Am I sending myself through a HRT menopause?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

For all the Women I knew BEFORE

I just believe it's time here in Cyrsti's Condo to expand the horizons around here! A start is this ftm transition video:

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Transgender Transition with a capital "T"!

The only comment I can add to this trans woman's transition video is WOW  Then again is this too good? One of the comments suggested a possible brother/sister team on this? I have seen quite a few amazing transition videos but many of them mention Facial Feminization Surgery (FFS).  I don't think it was brought up here. At any rate take a look:

Monday, April 15, 2013

When More is More

I you have probably noticed, I have sort of been on this fashion and style binge lately. Most of it is because spring weather has finally sprung in my part of the world and it's time for me to look ahead to my second summer of serious transgender transition. This I know for sure. I went from a summer furnace to a winter freezer and I have no reason to believe I won't be in the furnace again this summer. It is time to prepare for "air cooled" fashion.

I've been going through my closet looking for sleeveless and tank tops which I think are still good fashion staples for my summer wardrobe. Long flowing light skirts are good and fun too. All of that is good but then I remembered an old advertising slogan which went something like this:  "Your biggest fashion accessory this summer will be your skin".  How true, more is more when it comes to my skin- legs, arms and all.

I am fortunate my HRT has lessened my body hair tremendously except my beard..  On the negative side, last summer taught me to stock up on the body lotions to help the overall feel and look of my skin. I also am not a fan of panty hose, so I need to provide some color to my snow white legs.

Finally it's also time to get to work on feet and get them ready for summer shoe fashion if I want to go the sandal or the flip flop route.

More is always more for me when I procrastinate and wait for spring to magically appear.  Well. it's here and I have more to do!