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[personal profile] mschatelaine
So I told them. I have never been comfortable male, I have been in gender counselling for the last two years, I have been on hormones for a year, I am considering the possibility of transitioning.

Their reaction - shock of course, and speechlessness, and then a fairly reasonable discussion for about an hour. They are, predictably, not in favour. Neither of them would be able to accept me as female. They wouldn't be able to tell anyone else in the family, or anyone else for that matter. I didn't discuss what other family members already know. I would effectively lose my family life though not my family.

They did say that they would respect my position if I were to go ahead even though there was no way they could support or condone it and they entreated me to consider the things that I would be throwing away. They were dubious about the counselling system, that some people involved were too ... they didn't say 'liberal' and I didn't fill it in for them, although I called them on a couple of manipulations that they tried setting up, including a couple of nasty guilt trips that I was ready for.

Selfishness. Think of the big picture and not just yourself. Quote - "it's an 'Icky Me' position" - truly. Answer - yes it's selfish to say 'it's my life', but that remains the case, and is it not selfish to insist that I remain unhappy for the remainder of it? I wasn't as blunt as my mother, but that was the gist that I got across. Honestly that was the one that I expected them to trot out.

Think of what you'll be throwing away. Answer - it's an incredibly hard step and one would have to be desperately unhappy to consider throwing away all I have, job, family, male privilege, safety from neds. Implication - see me consider it.

God made you male. Answer - And God made me such that I'm not happy being male. That line of argument didn't go any further. It amounted to 'put up and shut up,' anyway, which isn't an argument I've ever stood for.

It's guaranteed to end in disaster, possibly even suicide. Answer - yes, I know of several cases where it has ended in death either at their own hand or at the hands of others. This is why there are rules, and psychiatrists, but see also argument re. 'desperately unhappy'.

I pointed out that I am happier and more capable now than I have been in several years; that the psychiatric evaluation that I have already gone through shows that my anxieties are coming from my gender problem and not vice versa. I will sleep tonight a lot better than I would have if I hadn't screwed my courage to the sticking place and driven over to see them.

They remain gobmacked, but also to an extent grateful that I had told them of my trouble. They consider that whatever I do in the privacy of my own home is up to me and may be good for my troubles, but taking the change would be a supremely bad idea. I assured them that the decision is in no way made.

Then they gave me the book that had arrived for me as the last part of my Christmas present and told me of the shenanigans with the local cats and that I'm expected to come to my niece's birthday in two weeks and to bring something pink. (She'll be five, going on about fourteen.)

Now I have a ragu cooking and a glass of red wine.

Date: 2009-03-17 07:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
you always expected them to be hurt and confused. But it does sound like they at least are listening.

It's a lot to take in, maybe there is joint counseling available (with a counselor they could respect?)

I don't know much, but I guess this will take some time? I would also guess that there are folk out there who had far worse responses, but then were reconciled?

I still say that you have been very brave and it was the right thing to do, well done :o)

Date: 2009-03-17 06:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Hurt and confused, yes, and now I feel awful. It's not always a good thing to take away people's illusions, even if it's sometimes necessary.

I'm still working out what I've achieved from it.

A step less hidden. A better idea of what would have to be involved in either side of any choice I eventually make. A few illusions and wishes of my own dispelled. They know I still have problems to solve instead of fondly believing that all is gravy in my world, which can only be a good thing. I have their respect for coming out to them.

I don't have to worry now about what to say if my mother turned up unexpected. She's that much less likely to do that as well.


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