The Problem with Transitioning

22 10 2012

To start this oddly – I could of course, be wrong… but it has worked for me. You best stop reading right now and go to the end of my wordpress to start at the start. This article addresses what makes it easier for others and by extension easier for yourself. It does not change what happens or the time it takes to happen; just how it is done. Fair warning – this article is a bit more ‘scattered’ than others, it meanders a bit to get to the true course.

The real challenge in life is when we feel things have be wrong for a long time and we now have the ability, power, money, confidence, support to make positive change for ourselves that we think everybody else will just ‘go along with it’.

If you are in transition, how many hours do you spend in therapy talking about being the new you vs the struggles of getting others to see that person? Over the years I have become better and stronger, but it cost me nearly everything I had known (and that too is a familiar story). I wrote this article in 2009 about the Losses – Coming Out Transgender. I said in that article that 25% of your past friends, family and the like remain. Even with the title of my wordpress, Amy is long gone.

The truth is now, that there were no survivors that crossed the barrier with me. My very best friend, best man; he could not walk the last bit with me when he saw how happy I am and how everything had turned out for me. He was there for me every step while I was struggling. He was there for me over a decade ago when I came out to him and told him about my childhood and hormones for the past 15 years. He was the last of my long past to fall away, lost when all has been going great these past years. He knew how to be with me as a struggling transgender friend, we separated when it looked like I had worked it all out and was content with where I was and about myself.

Also, the truth is, if you have been true to yourself and in your actions, then only when others lie to themselves while with you would that leave them unaware. Sometimes, the people you out yourself to cannot imagine what is happening.

I am going to swing out on a limb here and say that transitioning, the way it is set up through modern society and modern medicine is wrong. There, I did it, I used that word; when I think very few things can be labelled ‘wrong’.

I have watched countless people struggle in this are, so here is some advice. Please read through and tell me where the flaw might be. We live in a society where we now think that making some kind of grand social announcement then proceeding on course is the way to go with transitioning. Pretend with me if you will…

Pretend that you are a machinist, working down at the local shipyard, living in the town you were born in. You decide, based on figuring out who you are, that you are moving to Prague to study classic piano.  Now imagine the reaction (and noted lack of encouragement) that you are likely to receive at work, with your family, your close friends if you just come out and say “I am now a composer, and will be living in Prague”. Sure some of them would be supportive, but behind your back they would laugh and say ‘nice dream’. Now try it a different way.

Instead of making this grand announcement after you have figured out who you really are… you start taking piano lessons. In fact, at lunch you practice on a small electric keyboard, every day out in your car. You spend a couple years learning, that way, when you are in Prague you can concentrate on what you know you really want to do, composition. While you are doing these lessons, you play at every opportunity.  You have now practiced enough Czech that you great coworkers with “Dobrý den!”, every day. When asked about the the language, you comment that you are learning a new language. Finally, you start selling off all the things that you will not be taking with you on the move.

It is about then that others will ask you what is going on. When you explain that you do not see yourself as a machinist living in this town forever, they go ok… now it is making sense. When they think about it, they have noticed that you are proficient at the piano and have been speaking that other language. There is little question in their minds that you are serious about this, that what is coming has been well planned and that this is something you really want.

Now try it the other way…the way it sounds to most people when you come out as transgender or transitioning.

Come out to your family, friends and coworkers and announce that you now want to be called Bronco Billy the Cowboy and you are going to be a Rodeo Star. “Can you ride a horse” they ask – “No, not yet, but I am going to learn”. “Have you even practiced roping?”. “Well, I am going to buy a real rope soon”. So, they ask, “You want us to call you by just Bronco or Bronco Billy”. You respond “My name is now Bronco and I am a Rodeo Star – please make sure you get all that correct and never refer to me as my past” And, just like anyone you know that would make this announcement to you, it sounds a bit crazy. There is no doubt that some would think you lost your mind!

I have chosen the ‘change before announcement’ course every time, in every instance; the one of doing it myself first, then others get to see the plan. I was the person who said “No, I can’t do that this weekend, I have to do 30 hours more work on my boat”. I said “I am going out sailing for practice” when asked about going out in winter weather. When I talked about the watermaker installed or the solar panels, people nodded. All this was while living on the boat. When it was finally announced that we were going off cruising, people said “It looked like that” – not “Are you crazy, you are going to die”. Now I tell you I have sailed 16,000 nautical miles and lived in many different life conditions. I tell you I have backpacked, bussed and hitchhiked in several countries. Now, when I tell you that I am going to Columbia this winter and Vietnam next summer to trek around – you say “sure, that sounds about right”. Those things are all true. When I tell you I am building a vehicle for long distance road travel… you might say you would not BUT that looks exactly like what you would expect from me. In fact, if you have read this blog, the outdoors part and vehicles does not surprise you.

The journey of Transition is no different than following your heart, desire and beliefs for anything else. The pathway chosen is often made harder because what you are asking is for other people to accept that you are something that, up until then, never occurred to them about you. No one is surprised about a change when they can see the work towards it. In fact, once they notice the work, they often go along and support it very easily.

So, my advice is two fold. What not to do:

Change your name first and announce that you are now to be a woman to all your friends, family and coworkers (usually in that order as you build confidence). Making such a strong tack seems like a right of passage with transitioning BUT, like Bronco Billy and the rodeo, it is asking a lot of your support and social structure to make the leap with you.

What to do:

Start soft, like learning to play the piano (which I also do).  Start by changing your clothes slightly, grow your hair, fem up. All this takes time and you would have to do it anyways after making the “grand announcement”. Get fem, go on HRT then when you make the name change and ‘come out’, most people will already have figured it out OR at least be able to see that the course you are on is happening already.

Now before you beat me up, I am not saying do not become who you really are, just that you consider others as well as yourself when you transition. It should make it easier to take the same journey as others. Although I have, through sailing, bussed and backpacked through my earth journeys; the road, as always, less travelled.

Make it easy on yourself by thinking what makes it easier for others to understand. Otherwise, coming out as the new “Bronco Billy” the (now decided) rodeo star is an easier stretch than coming out as Sarah the woman. I am out.





The Path – Musings of Transitioning

13 11 2010

I have never been one for just following the road well travelled. I have managed to do very well in life by holding a course until the need arises to change it…

My transitional journey is a lot like long distance sailing;

  • You know where you would like to go – generally.
  • You have the means to get there, but not directly.
  • You tack when the conditions require it.
  • The course is never in a straight line (it is never just a downwind run!).
  • You do not dictate the weather, wind or water – only how you set your sails.

If you have not been off cruising in a sailboat, you may miss some of what I am saying here (and you can skip forward). As I said, life is about the Journey.

I (we, including the wife I was married to) thought that our son was going to be born in New Zealand 15 years ago. I looked like the rugged tanned male mariner (I was told I was a hunk) when I was in those early thirties. We were sailing on a course for New Zealand when we changed the tack. Life goes on and we never did make it to New Zealand, although we tacked onto another cruising boat, then tacked again into a house; gathering flotsam and jetsam along the way until we could not move or breathe.

I cut the anchor after 14 years on the cruising boat, a lifestyle, my wife and my 10 year position as a stay at home dad. In truth, I went adrift as a castaway so that I could focus on something that had been brewing for a long time. I had set all the challenges I had with Gender since I was 9 or so away in the back of my mind. I now set my course to figuring out gender for me.

It is nearing 40 years since I first started trying to figure out why I felt different. And for those that have been on a similar journey, it is never entirely what you think it is going to be, is it?…

Most people, when they hear of sailing long distance on the ocean, they think;

  • Wow, I could be free to go wherever I want – and it would be free!
  • It is white sand beaches, sunsets, drinks on the deck and paradise; forever!
  • Perfect, leaving all the responsibilities behind in the receding view.
  • That you are in command and control.

Nothing is further from the truth. Cruising is 90% boredom with 5% shear terror and 5% of the dream. The bulk of the time you maintain the boat, spend time on passage, explore remote locations and look for supplies to repair and maintain your boat.

Being TG or transitioning is a lot like that as well. Just like cruising, when you start transitioning, you think that you will now finally get all that you want, that all will accept you, that it will be sunshine, rainbows and unicorns… and then there is the reality of transitioning while in society.

By and large, most everybody has problems and issues – in fact, they are so busy dealing with their problems and issues that they do not give a shit about yours. This is, as it should be. When you start taking hormones and transitioning, most people will not notice anything – they will see you always were (except that perhaps you grew long hair). Transitioning is not about you and society OR you fitting in – it is a personal journey on a path few take and less understand. Most of the people transitioning really don’t know why they are here*.

*OK – before I get ‘hate comments’ (and I have never had one), I am just trying to be realistic with others transitioning. The truths are simple…

  • For the vast majority of the population, gender is seen as fixed in concrete and unquestionable.
  • Your very actions of transgender challenge people as much as it would if you said you could defy gravity.
  • Most people have their own crisis going on – and they really don’t want any drama from you.
  • The path you follow is individual, unless you decide that the route of popular psychology and surgery is the correct answer.
  • There is no singular answer to the ‘why’ question. Move forward and stay to the path that you choose.

I even managed to get involved with women (sorry, I am only into women) along this journey in the past 5 years. Like the general population, they had their own take and involvement in my transition. Transitioning takes it toll on close interpersonal relationships. The very act of transitioning means that what would be taken for granted as ‘stable / fixed’ is not!

Oh – time out here. You though this was going to be just about transitioning? You can read about that in the hormones section if you want to know what happens to the body. The real ocean of uncertainty in transitioning is not why you are doing it OR what will happen OR where you end up as in the other gender. No, the real ocean is what will you do for intimate companionship. Transitioning will take you only 10% or less of your lifetime (I know of a woman who did M-F in one year, at age 60; that means the transition was only 1/60th of their life). The other 90% of the time you will still need to figure out relationships, just like you always have BUT from a perspective that is now different. Good luck, reading further will not give you the key or secret.

Intimate Relationships

One was a woman named Amy. You see her name in the title of this blog. Amy was the first who birth the name Sarah (and I still like the name). Amy also had her own agenda and wanted her own lesbian relationship with Sarah… except, I was not Sarah, a woman. I was, as I am now, a transitioning person. Amy wanted me to go all the way and that was never my destination.

There was another named Laura and she was able to be bonded to me in such a way that my soul felt ripped apart by that relationship. She wanted something else. In the time with her – I married her and divorced her.

Both those people had their own strong agenda, and their own baggage. I started to think that transitioning was far less messed up than what ‘normal’ people were in relationships. I dated an angry lesbian army major (who had never cooked or cleaned for herself in her life), a woman (m-f), a crazy Filipino woman who had lesbian issues from her teenage past and a few others. I could not seem to find anyone ‘normal’ and I figured that it was all due to my own transitioning, my own ‘abnormality’ – although by now at near 4 years on hormones, I was feeling pretty normal!

So what was left for me? Guys? Um, no – I was a good guy who fucked around and I knew what guys were capable of. Besides that, they had nothing that interested me – they were hairy, had no shape, no breasts and an outy AND I did not want another relationship with some weird expectations. I have great close friends as guys, but I had no image of myself being in an intimate relationship with them.

I then did my best Tom Hanks in Castaway. I isolated myself long enough that I came up with the answer. As much as I loved being with people, I could no longer be in an intimate relationships. I would become a sheeple (sheep people) and live out the time enjoying relationships that worked. I did have some great long-term friendships, a set of great relationships at work and by and large got along great with everyone including my X (the one I had the son with) and my son. I guess, I just gave up and said that I was done with the freakyness of relationships.

And I was done… then

Along came a woman who I had not expected. One that allows me to be as I am – David+. That allows me to be the transitioning, integrated person without any expectations of any kind. Who revels in my womanliness and enjoys the maleness of my past. It is now nearing 6 months together and I love her more every day. The relationship is not crazy like the fireworks of the past (with many of those fireworks going off on the ground) – it is the steady smooth coal fire of a forge.

See, in transitioning, I refused to throw out what was good about me and still connected with maleness. I always considered the femaleness as added to me – not as in a trade. Perhaps I do not have the journey right for transition – I have always been about balance in my life… and I sought balance within myself of the male and female. I do not always look like a woman, although I have nice breasts! – nor entirely as a male, though I still have the outy.

Me on the right

I sailed off the map. I knew where male was and I thought that I knew where female was – I am somewhere else in both body and mind. Just like the sailing when I never made it to New Zealand, in transition I never made it to being entirely a woman. How do I feel about it?

Plot your own journey. You do not need to follow the path that only leads to one of two destinations. Keep an open mind and find peace within that mind and you will, like in Castaway, come to the crossroads where you can see that you really have a limitless horizon.

And about me, this early morning (I started writing at 0400)?

There is a beautiful woman, Jules, up in my loft still asleep; and we are getting married next spring. I have found a warm, accepting family with this woman. As for a sailboat, my third cruising boat (the smallest) is out in the carport, being rebuilt. Fair winds and safe shores to all who are transitioning. Sarah xox.





YouTube. WordPress does for writing what YouTube does for video

23 08 2009

I work as a writer and SEO, so my medium is understandably, writing.

Having said that, there is the medium of video and YouTube. YouTube has done for video what WordPress does for my writing. In the position I work in, for the company I work for (and I dare not put in a link to them because we monitor all links) I am the Communications Manager and Technical Writer; a nice title given to me without increasing my royalties! I also post instructional YouTube’s for work, but have yet to do any for myself.

If you are not used to YouTube, go there and type up a subject – from changing your oil to tuning your guitar (a friend found the subject of canning well covered!) to transgender and most anything you can think of. I found video instructions to reset the maintenance required light for my 2006 Scion Xb.

Here are a couple of my favorite people in the YouTube Transgender Community. Their videos are honest, educational, opinionated (sometimes), funny and often just plain entertaining.

Charlotte has a lot of videos – hours of amusement. I really liked her most recent one about detransitioning, so here is her link…

http://www.youtube.com/user/karmatic1110

This is honest and very nearly word for word my own experience; except for the fishy’s part! I knew I had ‘crossed the line’ when I was not trying to present and was being viewed as a woman. I go to work, with french braided hair (more days than not) and am still always seen and refered to as my male self – even though I am clearly over the line. And before you ask – I have no problem with people who used to know me as a male refering to me by my male name. I respond to either and my old name is like a ‘nick-name’ reminding me of who my long term friends have been.

<<>>

CandiFLA offers some very educational comments to help the beginner. Most impressive is her control of voice – although she is gorgous as well!

http://www.youtube.com/user/candiFLA

the video explains itself…





Gender Transitioning, Character Changes and Children

22 08 2009

For those of us in the TG community, there is a duty for support of each other as well as education for both inside and outside the community.

Warning, stop reading this right now. This article deals with the harshest subject in an honest manner.

You are not going to like what I am saying part of the time. You are going to think that I am wrong. Stop reading now.

IF you choose to start reading, then read it all, until the end, please. Please. It is a longish article and I will likely add to it upon more reflection and experiences.

Stop in the Name of Love

Stop in the Name of Love

I started this blog with who I am… a journeyer

Here is the fairytale, the story that you want to live. This is the story you tell yourself that will make you feel complete. So you woke up one day and thought – “I am not going to live the lie anymore. I am going to be who I was always meant to be. I am going to become the person who has been inside and hiding for all these years.”

For years, you just blended in, ‘kind of’. No one really knew what was in your head, the monsters that came to you at night, the dreams you masturbated to. Occasionally you reveled something of yourself and you were thought of as gay, or a dyke or a CD; by a partner or stranger that wanted to pigeon-hole you. You went to work and nobody knew what was inside you, dying to get out. You went to church, got married, had kids… and still they did not know. Then one day, you say a couple sentences to try to sum up all that you have felt, dreamt, wished, thought and all that you hope will happen and BOOM the bomb goes off.

The Big Bomb

The Big Bomb

Then you go see a doctor, go see a therapist, go to marriage counselling, go see a lawyer – get a divorce, fight for custody, have some surgery – and what do you have left? Who are you now?

If you have already exploded it all, if you have already blown up all your past life in a planned, rush of a sequence of timed detonations, then I am going to tell you the truths you know – the ones that you already know and live with everyday. If you have not blown it all up then take a look at what I am offering to help you transition.

calm

Calm Down

Take a calming breathe and repeat after me. Know who I am then what I want. FIRST – Know who you are, then SECOND – know what you want. Know who you are first and then what you want will just happen. Get it? Not quite yet, but this will help.

Time and time again when I encounter people who are unhappy and challenged, they are transitioning, or in love with someone transitioning. There is a swamp of feelings surrounding transition but most often I hear from people “I did not know I was (they were) like that. If your true goal in transitioning is to ostracize your past and try to start with very little in tow, then make grand announcements of a character, behavioral change. If you wish to maintain something of your old life (children, family, work, friends, sanity), then read on.

Transitioning need not be so painful. It need not be the rebirth that so many books and speakers seem to endorse. Not every person needs to fall from the sky, burn up to cinder then rise like the Phoenix (and that is the dream of many). If you think that you are prepared here for all the changes, read Astronaut Training first.

Missing the Right Arm

Missing the Right Arm

A Farmer looses an arm. Not an uncommon injury in some form or another across the country – much more common than F2M or M2F transitions, every year. The key here is what happens to the person after they lose the arm; the transition that might take place – and you should be able to imagine some tough scenarios here:

  • They wallow in self pity, retreating into a world with little social contact.
  • They feel like a freak, unable to do what others so easily do, and everyday is work just to keep up.
  • They change their character entirely towards the negative and become mean drunk and lose their family.

More often than not, a person with this sort of injury receives intensive therapy and, if they have the will, they return to their old life as they were. The lesson here is that if you were to lose an arm AND you want the people who always loved you to treat you the same, then keep your character. People can deal with the changes that come from you physically changing much more easily – they cannot adapt as well if you mentally change.

If your penis does not work, we have designed a drug so that you can make it work. The reason for that drug is two fold, less so for the operator but primarily so that things operate the same as they always have for the partner. It retains the ‘character’ of the act.

People have ‘character’ expectations of people they are with. If you change your character too much, people around you have a very hard time coping. Here is a man who retained his character after horrific life altering events. Read his story if you are not familiar with just how physically gifted he was before his accident and the character he maintained after the accident.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christopher_Reeve

Mastectomy and the body changing impact

Mastectomy and the body changing impact

Women are subjected to a constant threat of a major body change. The result often changes the person they were. Once again, I will be bold saying that a partner, husband, family and friends will have little trouble with the transition IF your character remains intact. But, move towards Shame or Anger; taken what has happened out on a family, or the partner – or one of the negative courses like the farmer above who lost his arm and that will send a message that you have changed, mentally. Mental – character changes are the toughest for people around you to comprehend and, in turn, continue with you in a relationship. Mental – Character changes leave those who love the altered person adrift in how they can be with them.

Also Liu Yan – http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/19/arts/dance/19barb.html

You can transition, live a great life and continue with family and especially your children… but your character needs to be defined.

Double Mastectomy means freedom and life to some

Double Mastectomy means freedom and life to some

Who you are – Know who you are – FIRST.

What you want to do with transitioning comes after knowing who you are, first. Too often we become lost on the “who we are becoming” journey and forget that there are many things about who we are and have been that are what others (and often ourselves) enjoy most about us. We spent a childhood, adolescence, adulthood forming who we are; not all of it needs to be left behind during transition.

So, if you really want to “get lost” and be forgotten, transition how you are. Most people transition and leave behind all that they ever knew. But this is not the only way…

Now about Children…

So you have decided to transition and you want to freak your kids out. This is easy, tell them just the way you did your partner, wife/husband, friends and work. Now if you want to maintain being with your children and you are switching which gender you are attracted to in a partner, this will complicate things – but only a bit – but that is a different article.

NOW, the part about kids and family. This is the secret recipe to give you the best chance at happiness IF you wish to maintain those around you AND be able to transition with them. You are going to need to keep your character consistent here, in spite of all the other changes that you will be doing. It is the little things that shake up the situation. Here are some M2F examples…

  • Refuse to mow the lawn because it is not ‘womanly’; or you might break a nail
  • Stop working on cars and get to the point where changing your own tire is beyond you
  • Go from confident business adviser to shaken, insecure person
  • Only do ‘girley’ things in a ‘girley’ way

People who care about you just can’t handle the change – and that is not their fault. You have a responsibility to yourself first, and then to them. Ask yourself if you are being real when (and this is because I am such a car gal) you tell your wife, children that “even though you have been a mechanic for 15 years, you are not able to do anything on a car at all now because you are becoming a woman” – and this is a true story, because I heard the woman who was so proud of her new “F” on her driver’s license say this to me!! How are people who know you supposed to keep up if you change who you are as a result of what you want?

My son

My son

You want to make it easier for your children? It is easy (and I am using 17 years teaching and 10 years as a stay at home father as my basis here). Retain your character with your children. Regardless of what your character is, retain it or make your character better for your children.

The real secret here is that you have to be who you are before your transition.

As an afterthought (I stumbled upon this video late October), this is a good message to Transgender individuals who are ‘over doing it’ or who are trying to figure out how to ‘act’.





Hormones, Part Duex

10 12 2008

Well, I told you about the cocktail of hormones that I take in the first article on Hormones.

Ready to read about the side effects (or are those ‘desired effects’)? I did what few M2F TS’s do, I have been on the hormones and off a number of times. The last time I was off was during the past summer, for two months. I go off of them to remind myself what I was, where I am and to let my brain ‘balance out’. I also like the learning experience of the changes in the brain.

Yes, I am a Scot

Yes, I am a Scot

 I have now been on hormones long enough (2 years in Feb 2009) this time that how my brain feels normal; seems natural, with the hormones – but here are my views and observations.

Mental:

When on the hormones, the world and my responses to the world and all the situations seem more colourful and wide ranging – when off of the hormones, it is much more black and white, with some variations of gray.

When on the hormones, I feel I have more creativity and am relaxed – when off of them; I feel driven (although often less focused) and at times, agitated.

When on the hormones, I can relax all Sunday, play some video games, watch a movie, go for a drive and just lay around; guiltless! – when off of them, I wake up with an agenda, head down the stairs or go out to the garage and immediately start working; until I am done the chore list in my head!

Physical:

When on the hormones, I have increased skin sensitivity (intolerance?) – when off, my nipples can be sucked really hard!

When on the hormones, I have some reduced libido (no surprise) but a increased duration for orgasm – when off, well, I have 4 children with 3 women and would have had lots more; my sex drive was a bit high…

On the hormones there has been body changes; Breast fat / developement (C cups), fat redistribution on hips and thighs where I had none, rounder buttocks (although mine were always shapely), muscle loss (with what I estimate to be a 25% loss in strength and 40% loss in stamina), softer smoother skin, softening of facial features – no real surprises, just what you would expect as secondary characteristics caused by hormones, whether in a GG (genuine girl) during puberty or a TG on hormones.

What hormones do NOT do:

The do not give you a higher voice… sorry – and that is the tip of the iceberg of denied life skills offered to women that need to be learned by an M2F.

Most importantly, they do not ‘rewire’ you to act like a women – that takes all the rest of your brain. Depending on your age, you have spent a long time learning all the things that society can offer to help you behave correctly in your infant assigned blue or pink box.

Everything is learned – how you walk, talk, hold your hands, look at people, smile, frown, laugh, cry. The level of things that define gender goes so far beyond the flesh bag of the human body. Breasts say you are a women, your hands accepting returned change in a store can say all male. The scale of the body – being a large M2F or a small F2M says less about your gender than how you walk and stand when trying to ‘pass’.

Beyond getting the hormones, the approval of a shrink to be on this path, the understanding of family and friends – you will need to be a skilled social observer and mimicker.

Coming soon – an article or two about social mimicry.

I will write more about these ‘socially’ taught aspects of being ‘passible’. I would also suggest that you read as much as you can from socialigists and gender observers, such as Desmond Morris, one of my favorites (The Naked Ape, Manwatching, Bodywatching and Peoplewatching), Tracie O’Keefe w/ Katrina Fox (Finding the Real Me) as well as many other. The key will lie in your ability to take in social observations and relearn it in your own life.

http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Introduction_to_Sociology/Gender





Truth of Hormones…

11 11 2008

Well, if you are looking for the Holy Grail, you are likely as to be as successful here as King Arthur was in Monty Python’s “The Holy Grail “.

I am a TG – or Gender Transformer. I also go by Intersexed. I am also Gynophilic (if you don’t know what it is, look it up!).

I have been interested in hormones for a long time. My first ’bout with them was almost 20 years ago {shimmering waves, fade to sepia tone} when I was under 30 and married to a clinical pharmacist who agreed to mess around with me – well the messing was that she supplied the hormones and I took them.

The end result after 1.5 years of experimental mixing a cocktail of estrogen and progesterone was that I had little booblets and some reshaping of body fat. Otherwise, I was a normal looking male (I was told recently that, and I looked, quote ‘as looking “GQ”‘ back then’). I had a handsome beard, full head of hair and the suntanned look of a sailor – which I was while off cruising! Oh, and I always had short hair because my wife kept it cut that way.

Watching the sunset

Watching the sunset

This time ’round was different. I was serious and I took a serious approach to the hormones and the rest of the body mods. I also grew my hair, two years when this picture was taken.

So, here is my serious recipe for hormones. Oh, and you need a doctor to check you out so that you do not blow up your liver…. or cause other damage.

First, before the hormones;

Do not smoke – it ages the skin and makes you look like shit. It also slows cellular repair.

Do not drink – Common sense here. Now, you can drink on rare occasion BUT, your liver is processing enough hormones to turn your testosterone off and fire up your body for being a girl.

Eat well – Simple, just eat good foods. You know which ones I am talking about. You can add vitamins, but eat well FIRST then take vitamins. A tomatoe a day keeps cancer away.

Drink lots of water and milk – Yes, you need lots of fluids moving through the liver and kidneys. Milk – is just common sense, calcium and vitamin D and the only single source of a complete set of amino acids for your body.

OK, so I sound like I am nagging. Here are the real goals – you want to change your body, you want your body to respond and you do not want to harm your body – right? Simple. It will do you no good to get to the place of being a girl AND needing a liver transplant.

I was married to a clinical pharmacist and I am a Wilderness EMT. I am not a health wacko, but I heal quickly and do not scar. I have never had any surgery, stitches or broken long bones. I have summited mountains, sailed oceans, trekked canyons and travelled foreign lands. I lived for over a decade and a half with no health care.

Ok, you have been patient – so here is my formula for hormones. This works well enough for me that I have pleasant C cup breasts, some nice hips, soft features and (regrettably) some loss in muscle tone… all after a 1.5 year course. Not bad for someone who used to body-build. I do have plans for an Inguinal Orchiectomy – at some time. I will outline my course of body action in a later posting.

 I take two different meds:

Spirotone 100; Spironolactone 100mg – 3x daily in AM

Estrofem 2mg; Oestradiol 2mg – 3x daily in AM

I get them from here

2010 note – Inhouse Pharmacy has stopped shipping internationally.

Inhouse Pharmacy is now 4 Corners Pharmacy which does ship internationally.

They have a specific TG site catering to both M2F and F2M. Their prices seem reasonable.

Here are their recommendations in M2F

Spironolactone acts as an antiandrogen of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone. Spironolactone in doses of 200–400 mg per day allows the practitioner to decrease exogenous estrogen doses tophysiologic or “hormone replacement” levels while still obtaining desired effects of breast development, feminization of skin, and female fat distribution.

Conjugated estrogens such as Premarin 5 mg daily.
Estradiol such as Progynova (Oestradiol Valerate) or Estrofem 4 mg daily.

So, you can see, I am a little heavy on the Estrofem. My calves can’t take any higher dose of the Spirotone! I dissolve the Estrofem under my tongue (purportedly easier on the liver). Patience will be your watchword here. There is much written about the ‘phases’ of hormones and their effect. I have kept my own rational observations – as well as those of my partner (so you can get an inside and outside view). More to come soon! The fat movement will start about a year into the hormones.

Oh – if you have read this far – bonus!

2 things.

Yes, I will be showing some frontal and full body pictures; not naked 🙂    I think I am decent looking and passable (like that were the real measure of a ‘good TG’ – whatever).

Yes, I still get great erections, orgasms and some ejaculation (although there have been some dry ones). It takes a bit more time, but not much more! Use it or lose it was what I was told…

For the continuing chapter, see Hormones, Part Duex