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  • Topic: Bravery/Courage or No Other Way

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    • May 9, 2013 12:52 PM BST
    • Jane Fae's excellent article in the Daily Mail 'Femail' section (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2321638/Prejudice-Abuse-And-surgery-needs-nerves-steel-A-brave-moving-account--The-cruel-reality-feeling-Nature-trapped-wrong-sex.html) gives a moving account of what it is like for some transgender people - the hate, loathing, prejudice, loss of status, loss of home and sometimes family - but we all have one thing in common, we all transition despite the odds, so is it bravery and courage which allows us to make this remarkable journey or is it something which we just have to do.  Is a caterpillar brave and courageous in becoming a butterfly - no, it is something that is inescapeable in its lifecycle.

      Whenever I have come out to people about my past, the invariable comment is how brave or courageous I have been to transition but for me, personally, the bravery was trying to live those previous years as a male, knowing how I felt about myself.  Transitioning was just a release from all that pressure to conform to a role that was totally false to me.

      So, what are your thoughts, is it bravery or just there was no other way??

    • May 9, 2013 1:24 PM BST
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      Hi Carol.

      I don't think it is bravery or courage it is a need for most. I would say you do have to be brave in a way to stand up for yourself as a woman when others think you are not or think you are doing it for fun . Who in their right mind would put themselves through all of it for fun? I am sane and I know you are . To do this for fun anyone would have to be totally mad.

       

      I lost everything the day I put what few male related items I had in the bin and watched them being tipped into the back of the rubbish collection. From that moment I walked out of my door proud but alone.

       

      Now I have everything and my family and old friends are just where they belong in the past. My new life brought me pain and every emotion possible but I made it , I done it now with more friends than I could ever wish for.

       

      You should be proud of what you have achieved.

       

      I am really busy and cannot read the article but will later .

       

      Julia x

    • May 9, 2013 1:36 PM BST
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      I used to tire of people telling me how brave I was, I'm not sure that the word brave was appropriate.

       

      I took the easiest path when I started my transition, brave would tend to describe the more difficult or treacherous path.

       

      I think the choice to start transition shows backbone but bravery?

       

      I think bravery might more appropriately apply to someone who commits to a life in the wrong gender for the sake of others.

    • May 9, 2013 1:46 PM BST
    • I wonder if that (committing to a life in the wrong gender) is fear or bravery though Layla.  Could be fear of eternal damnation because of religous upbringing or simply fear of revealing their true nature to others.

      Edited to add:-
      If the person has discussed their feelings with other people involved and then still decides to remain as they were born, then yes, that would be a brave and courageous thing to do

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 9, 2013 2:24 PM BST
    • May 9, 2013 2:15 PM BST
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      Firstly, I have to say it was a well-written and thoughtful article, and I really warmed to her matter-of-fact style. I guess, like many things, there are elements of all your question Carol in most journies undertaken by trans people.  Thinking about Layla's comment, I don't see myself as being "brave" by living in the wrong gender for so long, it was more akin to a feeling of "just get on with it and stop complaining" that I would say to myself (this was when i actually knew I was trans. Before that, it was a constant feeling that the sums didn't quite add up!)

       

      Jane hinted at the bravery element in the article when she referred to the somewhat cruel nature (even if well-intentioned) of the process undergone by trans people in the UK and this is the part I am facing now- that "put on a skirt and make up and get out there" test. I wonder if there is really no other way? After all, once it has been established that you are not contemplating transition for reasons of insanity, why is there still such a potentially long "bloke in a dress" period? No wonder those with resources of their own go private.

       

      Sure, the NHS really wants this to be for the committed only. I understand that, but my above point refers. I wonder what the stats are for those who either commit suicide during RLE, because of abuse etc or give up, go back to living in the wrong gender then commit suicide?

       

      Before anyone tells me how wonderful the NHS is really, I have said a number of times that my experience so far has been positive, but it does seem to be like trying to ride the Grand National course on a Shetland pony! (don't know where that metaphor came from!)- and I haven't even reached Bechers Brook yet (but I have completely confused anyone who isn't British and reading this).

       

      Most people, I am sure, will say there is simply no other way. I described my future to the psychiatrist as one of terror either way- but the terror of becoming too old to transition being by far the greater.

      This post was edited by Emma Gee at May 9, 2013 2:16 PM BST
    • May 9, 2013 2:35 PM BST
    • Just have to say that I loved your metaphor Emma.

      Personally I think that taking cross-sex hormone therapy before transition should be allowed as this would make transition far easier for people (they did this back in my day I might add).  Besides the feminizing effects, hormone therapy also brings a much more stable frame of mind - and helps with bodily hair, head hair (but sadly not facial hair although they can make facial hair elimination easier than if T was still surging through the body).

      By making people do it without is simply inviting people to buy these products on the internet - and cross hormone therapy is, in my opinion, something that should only be done under the guidance of a medical practitioner.

    • May 9, 2013 4:54 PM BST
    • Ouch! Carol! Even after the doctor realized that he had taken the I crazy approach and added "T" to my already FSH and LH shot was stupid at best, The other doctor still was forced to stop treating me because of what they call standards of care. What happened that friday May 5th 2001 was I got my hormone helper shot, mixed with a small dose of added "T". By sunday morning at 01:00am I was in the emergency room having a full blown heart attack. My heart enzymes were off the scale. My heart was literally tearing itself apart. So, I know nightnares all to well, and this was in the US.

       

       So after the doctor refused any more hormone treatments, I had to go it alone. Luckly in the past 6 years I found a doctor that guides me in what to do. She had made a trip just to see me in April, and spent 3 weeks here doing blood tests and getting me back right, so doing it on your own is not the way, but, at times, what other choice do we have. She also did a study as I am what they call an outlier and studied cases like mine don't readily exist beacuse by the time they realize what treatment is needed, they have committed suicide.

       

       I understand that I will be questioned at length about this, as I was born dual/mixed gendered and altered by an opinionated male doctor. I only say this as he took pictures of me before I was "fixed". The Doctors that looked at those pictures back in 2001 all said what he did was a mistake. The damage done emotionally and physically for 39 years could never be repaid. I still consider myself a form of transgenderism. I do take a special HRT regiment that may be slightly different that a regular Male-to-Female transition, as my body accepts the estrogen without question and anti-adrogens are not need at the usual doses. My autobiography though incomplete will be reposted to one of my web sites soon. It maybe good reading for some here, maybe not. Either way, it also documents the hell I went through with church and spiritualism.

       

      Enough of the past, it just causes tears I don't need to have again, the future looks so much brighter! Thanks for taking the time to read this, I hope it hope it helps some one in need......

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 9, 2013 5:02 PM BST
    • May 9, 2013 5:53 PM BST
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      Brave?  Hmmm...not so sure as it seems so necessary for one's wellness.  You do what you must do in order to survive, make it in this world!  I can replace the word "brave" with many other choices words hurled at me (us) along the way though like "insane", "crazy", "sick", "immoral", and on and on.  But looking back at then and now, those words do not hurt, frighten, nor do anything toward my reslove to live my life the way it ought to be.  Period...so I would use the word "strong" in lieu of brave.  You have to be strong mentally to transition.  It is not the same as brave...

      Billie, your story is just so much "wow" as in holy crap crazy!  Gawd, hang in there...you got this far!  The future looks bright...gotta wear shades!  Mine is like Cinderella compared to you!

      Traci xoxo

    • May 9, 2013 5:59 PM BST
    • Thanks Traci! Funny you say shades. I wear them all the time outside! When I get done loosing the rest of the weight, I get some outside shots of me! Thanks all here for being understanding and being a friend! And listen to my ramble at times.....

    • May 9, 2013 6:07 PM BST
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      Billie, there are so many loving people in this site that are willing to listen, commiserate, and share.  We're all linked by a common thread, that we all align ourselves somewhere on the "gender f*cked* scale.  So in that sense, we are like a family!

      Best wishes always!

      Traci xoxo

    • May 9, 2013 6:20 PM BST
    • OK, gender f'ed...... I could take that places probably not in tune with what can be said here! Family? Yes, that is what I need, that is why I searched the web looking for the right place to chat about everything and then, sometimes nothing. My doctor said I needed to re-engage life and people. So here I am in hopes that I not only found family, but also a home. (Where is my bedroom? The Kitchen? WOW! I need the bathroom too! I just it all, don't I?)

       

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 9, 2013 6:41 PM BST
    • May 9, 2013 6:38 PM BST
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      Drop by the chat room later today...actually close to 5 or 6EST...many of the UK girls are on then and you can meet some!  Warning you, they are nuttier than me!

      See you later in chat?

      Traci xoxo

    • May 9, 2013 6:40 PM BST
    • SURE! I'd love to meet and friend more family! The nuttier, the better!

    • May 9, 2013 6:42 PM BST
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      Careful what you ask for Billie!  LOL

    • May 9, 2013 6:45 PM BST
    • Awww, come on! Isn't this thread about being BRAVE? Courage? (I see dead people!!!!!)

    • May 9, 2013 7:04 PM BST
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      Run for it!  The Zombies are upon us....

    • May 9, 2013 7:19 PM BST
    • At times I feel they know what to do better than the live ones!

    • May 9, 2013 7:37 PM BST
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      Well I have just had a chance to read the article and thank you for that Carol.

       

      Are we the most complicated people on the planet? If I was asked that question my response would be "There is nothing complicated about me' But in reality I do believe we are. All of our lives are complicated in different ways and even those so called "Normal" people have complicated lives too , but us? To most of the misunderstanding population we are classed as , strange , abnormal , weird I could go on with a very long list.

       

      As for bravery and courage well again I suppose we all have different ways of discribing what I call struggles. Putting the insults aside I have taken on my journey from male to female. I have been called  Amazing far to many times , There is nothing amazing about me , people want to award me for being me! No not having it , I tell them straight I do not need an award for being me award the ones that helped me become me. I started alone but after a few lets say misunderstandings I then got to meet amazing people.

       

      Jane Fae's story is not uncommon it is heart warming (take away the pain) Should not have said that you can't but it is heart warming.

       

      Some asked I noticed about suicide statistics! Yes another trans person commited suicide in the UK! It is about one a day "One is that all" Oh thats ok then theres what close to 70 million people here in the uk what is one less? Well that one less is another one of us gone and why? That word again "Ignorance" . I hate suicide I have been very close to it and it is dark place . I survived but I am a surviver , even with all of my stengths and others like me it just takes that one last push.

       

      We fight we struggle and we go through things others can only imagine so sod it We are all amazing just keep your award.

       

      Julia .

    • May 9, 2013 7:47 PM BST
    • I Understand all to well. It is a shame we can't reach those in time to at least try to give them a helping hand. My first girlfriend had her struggles too. She committed suicide at age 18. I just got up the courage to write her Eulogy back in January, some 30 plus years later. It is no joke, seeing some one laying in a dried pool of their own blood will tear you to pieces. Add to that the love you have for them....... It is just not right...

    • May 9, 2013 8:54 PM BST
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      An excellent article and some really positive comments from readers underneath it. This is great. It's in The Mail and will reach a huge audience. Thanks for posting the link Carol... I would never have seen it otherwise!
      I hope it educates many many people.
    • May 9, 2013 10:53 PM BST
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      I have removed this post and video link as I have no wish to put fear into anyone starting transition. It was about one bad thing that happened to me and does not mean it will happen to you .

      Julia x

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 12, 2013 3:38 PM BST
    • May 9, 2013 11:13 PM BST
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      We're out of bullets here in the US Julia...our Homeland Security bought over a billion of them recently to use them on....us!  So you're safe!  (smile)  xoxo

    • May 10, 2013 12:41 PM BST
    • Carol, this article almost has too many issues to count which makes it very difficult to reply with a single comprehensive comment. In one sense, it is a pitiful and negative appraisal of transsexuals who have transitioned in the past. On another level, it is about the fortitude and strong character required by transsexuals who fully transition. But this issue of a requisite character to transition raises the sociopolitical question of why transsexuals have to face any difficulties at all other than the pain and inconvenience of different surgeries. Intrinsic to the difficulties created by these social problems is the very vexing imposition of the RLE. And finally, Jane Fae mentions the psychological antagonism of anguish and release as a person comes to a realisation about their gender identity.

      I am not sure which issue to tackle first because whether someone is brave or not is not the only issue. Before someone can seek the courage to transition they need to come to terms with the disjunction between the reality of their own life and the external, and arbitrary life that has been created for them by others.

      Regards

      Chalice

       

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 11, 2013 10:34 AM BST
    • May 10, 2013 5:49 PM BST
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      I actually thought it was a well written article, though I wouldn't agree with all the points made. But the article did tend to suggest that you can't make sweeping statements for the whole TG world; gender issues manifest themsleves in many different ways.
      Chalice, you have a real problem with the whole RLE thing. In a way so did I before I started on it, it's hard not to be a little nervous about it. I feel it was a leap of faith, not brave, but perhaps just a teeny bit of courage doesn't go amiss. When I changed my name and everything that went with it and actually got out there and did it, you know it wasn't too bad at all.
      It is after all a means to an end, and at the end of the day you don't have to do if you don't want to.
      I'm not going to try and tell anyone how they should transition, but I would suggest that they take control, do it how they want, and basically just get on with it if they really want to live and be accepted as female.
      Also when reading articles like these, I feel compelled to tell others that not everyone suffers "psychological anguish" when transitioning, indeed in my case transitioning in no uncertain terms put an end to all that. RLE, everything that comes with it and after it, is not hell for all of us, not humiliating or distressing, and we don't necessarily suffer abuse... ever!
      Sure, sure, I'm lucky, must be blessed or something eh? Or maybe I just got out there, bit the bullet and did it, and found the experience to be the start of the rest of my real life. If you intend to live as a woman you're going to have to start one day.
      Your circumstances may not allow that, or the voice in your head may not allow it, mine did.
      It's there if you want it.
      xx
      ____________________________________

      To thine own self be true.

    • May 10, 2013 6:00 PM BST
    • Lucy,

      that is possibly the most positive post I`ve read about transition.

      Love Daisy

    • May 10, 2013 6:01 PM BST
    • I couldn't agree more with what you have written Lucy, you and I seem to have fairly similar experiences although I did transition in what some might call the Dark Ages (40 years ago). 

      For me it was a release from years of stress and anguish and I have never suffered from any abuse (despite living in one of the roughest areas of Hackney for several years).  The fear of transitioning is far worse than the actually 'doing it'


      As you so succinctly put it "It's there if you want it"

    • May 10, 2013 6:14 PM BST
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      I waited a long time until my"ducks were all in a row" - then I went for it!

      My time had come. Sure, I wish I had done it sooner but there were many good things that happened because I had waited...like my children :)

    • May 10, 2013 6:41 PM BST
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      Hey Daisy, and I thought I was holding back, didn't want to be too over the top! But my transition was fine, it has changed my life so much for the better, and that's what transition is all about. 
      Maybe the medical profession and whoever else can improve on their practice and policies, but is it really helpful for an individual to complain about how it's going to be for them before they have actually tried it? It's about quality of life, and mine has improved immensely! 
      Doanna, quite so; no-one is going to arrange all your ducks in a neat little row for you, it's something you have to do for yourself. It's not up to "the system", or your GP, or your gender clinic. Forgive the despiseable corporate speak but they are just facilitators, and it's up to the individual to be proactive.
      It is YOUR life.
      Live it.
      xx
      ____________________________________

      To thine own self be true.

    • May 10, 2013 6:57 PM BST
    • A a musician, you know the saying less is more.

      i just liked the practical & simple approach you used.

      I`m a simple soul, so that worked for me

      xdx

    • May 10, 2013 9:08 PM BST
    •  I did read the article. Very real story about the distance She had to travel, Or RLE. Yeah, I didn't know what that meant, I did look it up.

       

       If I went over the top about my transition, I apologize. It is a long time in the making. It was something I was led into believing that could be controlled in 2001. Yeah, RIGHT!

       

        It all started when it was found out in 2001 that I was a dual-gendered baby. Maybe the term should be regulated. All I see is it has caused confusion the past 12 years. Last months blood tests proved just that. Yet, this is no better time as my body has completely stopped making most of its "T". The Blood tests show that is is most probably coming from my adrenals, which are working very hard. So in April 2013 the final step had to be made.

       

       The Doctor put two bottles on the counter and told me to choose. With two heart attacks and numerous strokes under my belt from "T" injections, I'm on the "E".

       

       Daisy, I'd like the simple approach too! Not everything is simple with the medical profession being on the same defensive lines as the religious right. Though I have walked around this planet with breasts way before 2001, the over weight me has adapted/hidden it to some degree. I am thinking more clearly just since Mid April when the final nail had to be put in the male coffin. The weight is pouring off me like sweat. (YUCK!) Due to the low dosing of "E" the past 12 years, Doc says my final transition will happen within a few short months, I don't have the androgen levels to fight like most. Mine are already at female level.

       

       I'm a baby some sort of way and I'm not asking you to change my diaper. I'm looking for loving help, friends, and hopfully family. I hope to find that with some of you here. Not everyone will be on board with me as my ship leaves the dock this final time. From what I have read, everyone's trip is different. If so, just please stand there and wave. Wish me well! Hopefully with smiles and tears in your eyes as mine is for all of you!

       

       Once again, I apologize. I know I probably came off here very strong in the beginning. I've been through a lot and that is not right for me to dump it on any of you.

    • May 10, 2013 9:52 PM BST
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      I believe as indivuals we each experiance our own set of challenges and truimphs and so as a person who grew up in a small town, less then 200 people and very much conservative and small minded and ultra religious, I used to think that only my passions and challenges matters, how selfish, but it was also naive, because when i met people from around the world they had, whether they were similiar challenges totally differant then I could see that they were/are struggling or rising just as much as me. they main point is is that to reach (our) own zenith, we do need to be brave, I believe that everyone is brave in their own ways, whether little or big.

    • May 10, 2013 10:03 PM BST
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      To simplify it some, Learn to love yourself, accept yourself...all the rest WILL fall into place.  To borrow a line from Lucy, then just do it!  It IS out there for you (us).

      *love life*

      Traci xoxo

    • May 11, 2013 1:45 AM BST
    • "Before someone can seek the courage to transition they need to come to terms with the disjunction between the reality of their own life and the external, arbitrary life that has been created for them by others." quote - mine.

      Not only is the identification and acknowledgement by an individual as transsexual paramount to embarking on transition unencumbered and supported, but it is also tantamount to productive and harmonious societies. No person is an island. Indeed, in the Daily Mail article Jane Fae broaches this issue of comfort.

      Mostly its about comfort. The same sort of being comfortable in your skin that drives women –some men, too – to fix things they hate about themselves.

      In my little insignificant world, the question of personal comfort involves feelings of cognitive dissonance. Cognitive dissonance is the very real psychological disjunct between what a person knows they should do and what they are able to do. Clearly, there are personal and external obstacles to the things people know or desire to do. To me, how and when we remove those obstacles, for ourselves and for others, is the challenge we should all set ourselves.

      I think a new paradigm in transitioning is being heralded in by young transsexuals and the developments made around identifying them. The changes to society that are needed in order to accept and receive these young people cannot be done in isolation, and so it will, in turn, transform our own communities if not the World. I will be watching this site, https://www.facebook.com/ImTransAndProud kindly posted by Joanne Lee, with great interest and sincerity. Surely, this facebook page gives witness to transsexuality as a solution rather than the creation, reinforcement and perpetuation of a problem. Personally, I would prefer to be reading 'good news' stories about transitioning instead of the constant whining and whinging about how society has not bowed down to serve us, that I too often have to endure. We are not here to be seved, but to serve. We can help ourselves by helping others. Indeed, Jane Fae shows this service with her article and she cites a similar assertion.

      And joy – sheer joy! -- at understanding finally what the problem was and that there were ways to fix it.

      Notwithstanding, Jane Fae also scoots over the problems of both the passive and active opposition, resistance and violence towards the Transsexual Cause.

      Middle-aged, not the most adventurous of women, the level of violence I experience day-to -day is nothing to what some of the younger trans community put up with. ... Because of the mindless hatred that is out there can pounce in an instant, turning your day to dire, or your life – if you are really unlucky – into just another statistic.

      Statistically, Transsexuals occupy 1% of the current census. But so do bikers and nobody gives them much of a hard time. lol! Nevertheless, our authorities in this country have been moving towards outlawing 'bike gangs' for more than a decade. How can you outlaw, 'outlaws'?  But my point is that while our Government is making it harder for bikers to form gangs, a lot of work is also going into the assistance, facilitation and development required for the acceptance and reception of people within the full transgender spectrum. Indeed, several politicians in our Federal Government are openly Gay and some of those even have partners.  

      So, what is the way forward? To me, its already in the Gender Society Charter – positive and supportive. I will be looking for others who can be upbeat in the face of adversity and appreciative of different points of view. Perhaps now, a final word of gratitude from, and to, Jane Fae.      

      For being trans is not choice, not aspiration, not a goal. For some, it may be personal tragedy: for others salvation.  In the end, though, it is about comfort –   and finding ways to live with oneself. 

      In service to all Trans-folk.

      <3

      Chalice Brendale   

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 11, 2013 9:43 AM BST
    • May 11, 2013 4:10 AM BST
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      very great words you have said chalice.

    • May 11, 2013 11:42 AM BST
    • In her article, Jane Fae is less than complementary towards the Real Life Experience (RLE). In fact, her conclusion unequivocally makes the claim that the current form of RLE negatively colours the medically sanctioned process of transition.

      Now before people accuse me of being stuck in a rut over the RLE, it needs to be pointed out that my view has changed with the unfolding of articles like these and my other reading. So, the scope of my present interest in the current RLE paradigm is to nuance the aspects of social welfare and harm minimisation for transsexuals from within our own contemporary understandings of transitioning.

      Jane Fae claims that the way is open for transsexuals to transition and almost in the same breath she cautions against it and then tells us that it can only be done by observing what have proven to be increasingly impossible conditions. Her points are ordered respectively:  

      And for some. For a very small number of individuals who are transgender, and for whom the discomfort of living in a body utterly at variance with their own sense of gender is too great, there is a package – therapy, hormones, surgery – that allows them to live more closely in tune with how they have always understood themselves to be.

      The full transition is not something one does easily, and never lightly.

      Before you are allowed any sort of hormone treatment, you must undergo counselling and what is known as 'real-life experience'. This is exactly what it sounds; putting on the clothes and role of the other gender – and living openly as such – before you are allowed any medical intervention whatsoever. That's harsh, by any standard. Abuse and violence are frequent.

      I have said before that forcing people to embark on RLE knowing that abuse and violence will follow is inarguably immoral and unethical. It is not that there must be other ways for people to transition. It is simply the case that the current form of RLE is anachronistic. I have also previously made the observation that the Standards of Care make allowances for personal, social and cultural differences in the transition process. So what is my issue? Well obviously, our common, mundane understanding of transitioning needs further nuancing. I can understand this ignorance from the general public, or the uninitiated, but it is unforgivable for those entrusted with our care to persist with an outdated and outmoded practise in the face of evidence which contravenes it. This neglect and the omissions made by professionals is equivalent to the lies and hegemony of the Tobacco Companies.

      The RLE is a very real problem. Those of us faced with transitioning today can feel it. I feel it and I could cite others. Indeed, Emma questions it:

      Emma Gee said:

      Jane hinted at the bravery element in the article when she referred to the somewhat cruel nature (even if well-intentioned) of the process undergone by trans people in the UK and this is the part I am facing now- that "put on a skirt and make up and get out there" test. I wonder if there is really no other way? After all, once it has been established that you are not contemplating transition for reasons of insanity, why is there still such a potentially long "bloke in a dress" period? No wonder those with resources of their own go private.

      If others have overcome the difficulties and obstacles of transitioning in the past, when things were unimaginably adverse, then all praise to them. But today, the truth is that the RLE is becoming a farce. It is increasingly being viewed as bizarre, impractical and irrelevant. Jane Fae again:

      Women might be intrigued to learn that candidates for gender re-assignment have been rejected for not 'dressing like a proper woman' (for which read 'wearing a skirt'), or for not having appropriate hair (long!).

      If people who observe us, as we transition, do not have the common sense to appreciate and accept that there are intermediate  stages between the start of transitioning and some desired end point then that is their problem. On the other hand, why should they expect and have to accept that someone would transiton 'cold turkey', one day presenting as one gender and the next another? We cannot transition from within our communities if we make those we need to accept us into an inconsolable opposition. Personally, I like my anonymity and if Jane Fae is any authority on the subject, so do many others. Again I grant her the last word:

      Because what the vast majority of trans folk would like above all else is not to be the centre of attention; not to be in the spotlight for no other reason than that they are trans. 

      Serving the trans community.

      Love 

      Chalice Brendale     

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 11, 2013 11:56 AM BST
    • May 11, 2013 1:19 PM BST
    • I think you are misinterpreting Jane to fit your own agenda Chalice.  Jane thinks it is harsh to not start a person on cross hormone therapy before transition and commencing the RLE, something that I have long argued for.  This gives a chance for some feminization (or masculinization) to start subtlely altering the skin and other bodily features and also will calm a person so that they can embark on the RLE with greater peace of mind.

      However, the RLE is necessary - how on earth would you be ever sure that it is the right thing to do otherwise.  Everybody who has ever had regrets has been convinced before surgery that it is right for them, they then rush their way through surgery and then find that they cannot live in their chosen gender role.  They are stuck in no mans's land (forgive the pun) where they still have to present as men for the rest of their lives, but without their tackle - because at the end of the day they fear presenting as women.  How people accept you is not about whether you have had SRS (GRS, GAS whatever floats your boat) , if you are scared of presenting as female, then having had the op will not make the slightest iota of difference.  Believe me, people don't have X-Ray vision that can strip you of your clothing as you walk down the street.

      Transitioning is NOT a lifestyle choice, it is who you are and for most people who they were since birth - that is why at the end of the day it is transition regardless of the fear etc and so when you do, you are then on the RLE automatically.

      There have been many of us who have transitioned (and some of us in a far harder age) and have had absolutely no harassment or abuse and even in this tiny isle (hich you have previously stated is far less tolerant than where you live).  You might argue that I was lucky, I was small and reasonably pretty (when I was young) and so could *'get away with it', but in the group that I started back in the early 70's, there were a couple of people of over 6' tall who successfully transitioned shortly after me.

      All the medical profession are saying to us is "Well, you say that you are a woman, simples, go and be one" - and what is so wrong with that???

      * Get away with it - I never saw it as getting away with it, I saw it as simpy 'being me', a female.

    • May 11, 2013 3:17 PM BST
    • Well Carol, I am not going to say that you must be reading a different article to me this time because there are other points of contention. 

      Carol Uren (Site Moderator) said:
      I think you are misinterpreting Jane to fit your own agenda Chalice.

      Is it a totally foreign concept to you for a person to place their own personal interests at the forefront of their labours? Of course I have an agenda, hello, and I am constructing my arguments in order to advance it. There may well be a case in the UK to advocate for the liberalisation of hormone use for transexuals in transition, so I accept your reading of Jane's article but here, in this country, no such obstacles exist.     

      However, the RLE is necessary - how on earth would you be ever sure that it is the right thing to do otherwise. Everybody who has ever had regrets has been convinced before surgery that it is right for them, they then rush their way through surgery and then find that they cannot live in their chosen gender role. They are stuck in no mans's land (forgive the pun) where they still have to present as men for the rest of their lives, but without their tackle - because at the end of the day they fear presenting as women. How people accept you is not about whether you have had SRS (GRS, GAS whatever floats your boat) , if you are scared of presenting as female, then having had the op will not make the slightest iota of difference. Believe me, people don't have X-Ray vision that can strip you of your clothing as you walk down the street.

      I'm not making any investment in this argument. You totally miss the nuancing of the points I have made. The current form of the RLE is archaic, anachronistic and abhorrent. It may have worked for an uninformed and infantile society over the past decades but that doesn't give it any validity for the present time or any foreseeable time in the future. I also doubt it has much utility in this country because we are not encumbered by the limitations and restrictions of your traditions.

      Neither do I have any interest in arguing about the definition of Transsexuality. Each person will have their own explanation. 
      I'm not sure what you're referring to with the term 'get away with it'. I've never used the term. Maybe you should reread one of the earlier replies.

      I am totally 'au fait' with your position; you support the medical establishment over the current batch of transsexuals coming through.

           
      All the medical profession are saying to us is "Well, you say that you are a woman, simples, go and be one" - and what is so wrong with that???

      I know what the medical profession is saying. They are the ones who feminists successfuly pursued and wrested power from because their so called 'professional, white, middle, class males' were making decisions about what women could do with their bodies. I see a very strong corollary with how RLE has started out in the third millenium, and how they psychologically and socially mutilate the people they are supposed to care for.

      My view. People can jump up and down and scream and shout about the necessity of RLE in its current form, and insist on transsexuals blindly prescribing to it and without question, and then simply wash their hands of any accountability when things go tragically wrong, but I am not going to be complicit in it.

      <3

      Chalice

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 11, 2013 4:01 PM BST
    • May 11, 2013 5:12 PM BST
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      I soooo agree with Chalice on the absurdity of the RLE requirement.  Nothing sets up a woman more for humiliation and abuse than going thru that while your body hasn't caught up yet.  It is archaic and insanity.  Slowly morphing before RLE would insure success to those that aren't blessed with comolete feminine outward features.  The RLE might be easy for the young ones whose body hasn't been ravished by that poison T, but for those who are more physically mature, it is a recipe for disaster!

      Traci xoxo

    • May 11, 2013 5:29 PM BST
    • Well, I would not have put the argument so strongly. There is much, much more persuasive argument behind the call for a review of RLE. For example, clinical methods have not kept pace with psychometric testing and sociological analysis which can be used to identify genuine transsexuality and therefore significantly diminish the risk of a false positive, or perhaps more importantly a false negative.  

      Traci Lee O'Gara said:

      I soooo agree with Chalice on the absurdity of the RLE requirement.  Nothing sets up a woman more for humiliation and abuse than going thru that while your body hasn't caught up yet.  It is archaic and insanity.  Slowly morphing before RLE would insure success to those that aren't blessed with comolete feminine outward features.  The RLE might be easy for the young ones whose body hasn't been ravished by that poison T, but for those who are more physically mature, it is a recipe for disaster!

      Traci xoxo

       

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 11, 2013 5:32 PM BST
    • May 11, 2013 5:35 PM BST
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      Well girl, you can tell by my post that I feel strongly about this...I've seen too many girls fail and take drastic measures because of prematurley being forced into RLE.  For them, it was a drastic measure, but given the alternative, which was being rejected by the medical "experts" from going forward, they were backed into a corner and just had to comply.  It was a tansgender massacre...seriously, how many people are going to succeed when they are forced to live 24x7 while they still have facial hair, male bodies, and perhaps issues with their hair/scalp?  There weren't many that came this unscathed and most bear hurtful scars from this.  There IS a better way...

      Traci xoxo

    • May 11, 2013 5:36 PM BST
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      it also boils down to i understand if i was 10 and not allowed to get hormones but im 25 im pretty sure im of an age where i can deside for my self what i want to be

      all i ask is that my dr trustes me

      i dont much trust my dr atm because

      1) i dont feel he understands me

      2) treats me like i dont know what i want/need clearly, like im a 5 yr old wanting to become a fireman with out knowing what one is

      3) i feel like hes delibratly preventing me from becoming myself (and i feel like im falling further away every time i wake up and find my hair becoming thinner and thinner i know if i dont do something i will be bauld by 27) i told him how much that was causing me problems and he told me no

      sometimes i just wake up in the morning see myself and feel like cutting away the things that are causing all the problems of my looks. im sorry but thats just how i feel on most mornings my hair has moved back 2 cm since last october and he knows that the stuff he can give me will stop it as its my male hormones that is causing it and because he reminds me of it every time i go there

      hense why i havent gone there any more when i said i talked to the dr and he sent off to the gender place i mean i just talked i didnt go see him glad we have phones these days

      all i would like to see is sign here to say you fully understand what your taking and why you want to take it just so when you have changed you have no legal standing to sue if the procedure goes 100% but it turns out u didnt really want it

      sign here to say you understand the op your about to have and what it will do to change your body and if the op goes 100% and it wasnt what you wanted we are covered


      it would be that simple that way they are covered and id feel like im been treat like an adult not a child atleast

    • May 11, 2013 5:48 PM BST
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      Rebecca...we now have such ability here in the USA to sign off liability and be allowed to go forward.  It's called a consent agreement or something like that.

      As for your hair, go to Inhousepharmacy.biz and order Dutasteride (Duta)...it blocks the conversion of T to DHT, the main cause of male pattern baldness.  also, get and use twice daily, Minoxidol 5mgs.  Rub this into your scalp religiously.  It can regrow hairs from follicles that have shed theirs already for follicles tha have been "dead" or dormant for up to 8, even 10 years!  You are young so there is a decent chance that this is reversable.  Older people that waited too long are not as fortunate.  I started using it about 3 years ago and it regrew pretty much whatever had thinned or receeded.  But I really had a decent head of hair to start with.  It was just "thinning" and even showing signs of a tiny "spot" on my crown.  Not anymore...I do not wear wigs any longer...see my pix for my results.

       

      Oh, and you must take control of your meetings with your doctor,  Do reccomend to him just what you need specifically, and provide examples as to why.  They are often going by a book that it is not current and most have no understanding of any of this....fire him/her if you are not satisfied with their responses and find another!!!

      Best wishes always!

      Traci xoxo

    • May 11, 2013 5:48 PM BST
    • >> Traci, the parallel argument is that gg's don't do anything so absurd. For instance, a tom boy slowly progresses from her childhood habits and practices as her body slowly progresses into womanhood. Why should transsexuals have to proceed on a totally foreign course? Is it because that's how its been done in the past? Or because it is convenient in clinical practice? Or is it because that's the best option which the current technology could provide?

      Again, clinical practice has not kept pace with the community it serves. I have no problem with that, but they must be prepared to upgrade when the opportunities arise.

       

      <3

      Chalice

       

          

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 11, 2013 5:52 PM BST
    • May 11, 2013 5:53 PM BST
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      Totally agree Chalice on the medical field needing to upgrade their protocols...sadly, many are far behind and the latest and greatest lines of thought and treatment are so readily available to them as we move thru time.  The onus is on them, but there is not any urgency for them to keep up.  Here in the USA, we still have the ability to pick and choose our doctors.  Obama is going to change all of that for the worse.  But as of today, if you are not satisfied with your doctors, you can drop them and find another who will listen, understand, and react properly.

       

      Fun being us, huh?  (smile)

       

      Traci xoxo

    • May 11, 2013 6:14 PM BST
    • Traci - please reread my 2nd sentence "Jane thinks it is harsh to not start a person on cross hormone therapy before transition and commencing the RLE, something that I have long argued for." and I then went on to say why.
      For me taking hormones and the RLE are two completely different processes - also, I started my electrolysis a couple of years in advance of transition as I realised that this was an imperative step which would allow me to not worry after I transitioned.  Come on Traci, it's not rocket science, Most people will have thought long and hard about this beforehand and should have it in place before they start.  For most people they don't wake up one morning and suddenly decide to transition and then have to face these problems.

      Rebecca: Doctors can and do give puberty blockers to delay the onset of puberty these days, but you have to have told your parents and been properly assessed before they do.  Once you are 16 and of the age of consent yourself, they can then be given cross-hormaone therapy.  I would advise you to change your GP if he/she is not sympathetic, you are entitle to be held in respect by your GP and not talked down to as if you are a child.

      Chalice is arguing for something different, what I don't know as she will not spell it out, despite being asked on many occasions.

      This post was edited by Former Member at May 11, 2013 6:34 PM BST
    • May 11, 2013 6:20 PM BST
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      Carol..I was just venting my opinion on how I felt about RLE...yes, I saw that line from Jane and agree.  It is a touchy subject for me as I've witnessed too many "disasters" and do not wish to include myself amongst their ranks as I continue forward.  So I guess I sorta got us off track a bit from the topic...I'm good at that!  LOL

      Traci xoxo

    • May 11, 2013 6:36 PM BST
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      You're welcome...and please do begin the Minoxidol regimen ASAP...I also use/have used a laser comb by Hair Max....it really does strengthen and thicken existing hairs and does help to "germinate" dormant and thin ones!  It's not cheap, but you can see and feel a difference immediately.  You use it 3x per week...takes about 12-15 minutes depending on how much hair you have!  It's taking me longer and longer as time goes on!  LOL  Not complaining girl....(smile)

      Traci xoxo

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