Two weeks on Wednesday I have my second appointment at the Gender Identity Clinic and it has become more and more apparent to me over the past few weeks that the psychiatrists at these clinics are programmed to seek a particular response before diagnosing someone with Gender Dysphoria. It goes like this …
Question: Do you hate your body?
Result: A good chance that a positive diagnosis will be given.
Question : Do you hate your body?
Result: Very little chance that a positive diagnosis will be given.
So I have a problem, as I shall explain in this rather lengthy post.
I don’t hate my body per se, I just hate certain aspects of my body. After all it’s the place where I reside in this universe so to hate it in its entirety would logically mean that my only route to happiness would be to have my brain transplanted into the skull of a cis-female.
Some of the unwelcome aspects of my body can be changed with a positive diagnosis of Gender Dysphoria, prescribed hormone therapy and eventual genital corrective surgery etc., but others cannot.
Let’s start from the top and you’ll understand more fully.
Height: I’m 6′ 1″ (1.85m). Whenever envisioning myself in female form my dream was to be 5′ 5″ (1.65m).
Hair: My late teens coincided with hippies, the Summer of Love, Flower Power and all that went with it, and I let my hair grow to reflect my liking of those times. It was over my shoulder at its longest, thick and full of waves, and along with a lot of the clothes I wore back then it would have been very easy for me to slip across the gender divide had I fully recognised the repressed urge to do so. Now the colour has drained taking with it a fair percentage of the central belt, it’s dry and fairly unmanageable, and despite the best efforts of my hairdresser I may eventually be forced to resort to a wig in order to be able to “pass” as female.
Brain: Ok, plenty of opportunities for humour here but let’s keep it real … I hate the aftereffects of my accident; the confusion, disorganisation, memory problems, self care issues, etc., but there’s nothing that can be done about them (mainly because the doctors refuse to accept that they exist) so I just have to live with the situation. These will and do make it really difficult for me to do my part in moving forward, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to do the best I can or that I’m going to give up.
Ears: I have big ears. I’ve always had big ears! They are a man’s ears and as such will never stop growing. Tying my hair back in a ponytail in order to appear in any way feminine is seriously not an option.
Nose: Fairly large. The bulbous tip could be tapered by cosmetic surgery but I’m not into that, even if I could afford it.
Mouth: Not wide enough and I have reasonably thick lips, which I detest. Again this is just something I’m stuck with.
Face (General): I hate having to shave! … I’ve always hated it, which is why for many years I had a beard. I so want soft, smooth skin on which to apply my make-up.
Adam’s Apple/Voice: I’m lucky here in that my Adam’s Apple hardly protrudes even when I’m at my slimmest, however my voice is a different matter entirely. Having once been told (seriously) that I could sing second bass in a Welsh male voice choir I often refer to it as sounding like “A Cockney market trader who’s had a long, hard day on the stall on a day when it’s been blisteringly hot and dry and all the pubs are shut”. Voice Training is going to be fun!
Shoulders: Broad. When buying men’s jackets I go for a 50″ (127cm) chest size so as to get the shoulders wide enough, even though my …
Chest: … is only 44″ (112cm). This does cause a few problems when buying women’s clothing, but they’re not insurmountable. Fortunately I’m not hirsute so there is very little in the way of chest hair to worry about.
Breasts: Still small but growing slowly, and I love them to bits !!! 😀 Whenever I touch them the sensation is pure magic and I really can’t wait for the proper hormones so their growth rate increases. I’d rather not end up with them looking like a dead-heat in a Zeppelin race, but to have a proper cleavage would be heavenly. 😀
Waist: Ok, so I need to lose weight. I know this! 😦 My waist is now two to three sizes smaller than my chest but there is certainly room for improvement. I had intended to walk down to the harbour every day once my legs improved, but this has taken many more months than I’d expected and so almost 18 months of restricted mobility (and bad diet) has taken its toll. Regular exercise is a must as soon as I’m able!
Hips and buttocks: I’ve always had a “cute bum” and once I lose some weight it will still look good, especially for a woman of my age.
Genitalia: As things stand (pun intended) my enormously large clitoris and dangling ovaries are the things I hate the most about my body. I’m so desperate to have this aspect of my body corrected so that my Danny can make love to me properly and so I can “feel” as close to being a cis-woman as possible, although I do acknowledge that the hormones and just “life itself” may alter this over time.
Legs: From a female point of view I have nice thighs but my calves are a little muscular. Not overly though, so I would be quite willing to show my legs off if it were not for the permanent scarring which I now have on my left leg since the severe cellulitis and reaction to the penicillin which I had last year. Even with the recent treatment for my varicose veins I’ll probably need to wear compression stockings for the rest of my life, but the black knee-high versions are dark enough to conceal the scarring, and full length ones ones with lacy tops are available for that extra touch of femininity. 🙂 Sometimes we just have to accept that life is what it is. Shit happens.
Feet: Large! … UK Size 11, wide fitting, high insteps, plus I have a hammer toe on my right foot which would look horrible if I tried to wear open-toed shoes with bare feet, and painting the nails would only highlight that even more.
So in an ideal world where I was born physically female I’d have been 5′ 5″ and a (UK) size 10, but it seems I got in the wrong queue and I’ve always hated the way my body looks when it’s dressed in male clothing. Sure there were times when I bought smart suits, shirts, ties and shoes and I probably looked really cool, for a guy, but looking back I recognise now that these were just a mask to cover the sorrow within.
There’s nothing I can do about most of the physical attributes that I so dislike about myself so there’s no point in letting them get me down, but my Danny always tells me that I’m a beautiful woman, and with the help of hormones, voice coaching, hair removal and genital realignment surgery one day I will be able to feel that for myself.
I do feel “beautiful” on the inside, I just need some help to complete the feeling and to make me feel “comfortable” with my body.
I think you are beautiful and perfect just as you are. I love you.
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mmm I know you do darling, thank you. Love you too 🙂
You made me think of this…
Thanks, Tasha, I’d not heard that before, it’s very apt. 🙂
Tish, I think you are lovely and a good writer. I lucked out an got a counselor who really does holistic health and doesn’t expect me to hate every part of me, though at times the dysphoria is very intense! I hope you let us know how it goes.
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Thank you so much for the compliments, that’s really sweet of you. 🙂
I agree, we can’t hate everything about ourselves, it wouldn’t make any sense.
Things went really well, thank you, as per this post … https://transgendertish.wordpress.com/2015/10/21/i-think-shes-got-it-i-think-shes-got-it/
I hope Tish that they don’t force you into a role. Dysphoria doesn’t have to mean you hate your body, or even specific parts of your body. It can change too. Early on I thought that I might make do without transition. Then with transition but without surgery. Then I needed surgery and my feelings about my “boy” parts became more difficult. We are all works in progress, fluid and changing. Remember too that those parts that don’t “belong” are likely still the source of pleasure and bonding with your partner. A complex subject indeed. Best of luck.
No, Rachel, I’m very much in control of my own destiny as far as my final destination is concerned. They’ll just help me along with what I need to move forward, stage by stage, and if the time comes when I decide I’ve reached where I want to be then that will be fine. Once I start on the E patches there’s no telling how my thoughts may change, so full transition might not end up as my final goal. There’s no issue with the parts that don’t “belong” as far as the marital bed is concerned, because that hasn’t been relevant for 3 years now, and my Danny says he’ll accept me no matter how my body is put together.