Things I wish I could’ve said to my ex-wife before we parted ways 

As anyone familiar with my blog or my life will know, coming out as transgender (or rather being found out) around this time in 2011 was devastating to my ex-wife and soulmate, who I refer to as ‘S’ for the sake of her privacy. Our relationship had essentially already died as we’d drifted apart, but it hit her hard, at a time when she was already going her own issues.

We divorced in 2013, but we lived as roommates up until I left South Florida in January 2015. We had many fights and it was extremely difficult for both of us to coexist. During those fights and even in normal conversations, S had already come to many conclusions about me and about what happened. I never got the chance to explain and it was too painful and too triggering for her to even discuss, so it often came out in the form of anger.

Anyway, these are some of the things she said to me and perhaps she believes them, or perhaps she really doesn’t. Either way, I need to set the record straight, if only to try to help me move on:

“You made love to me with hate”
– Wrong. I made love to you in spite of my self-hate and I enjoyed the times we made love, even though they became few and far between. I take the blame for this as I didn’t make you feel beautiful or wanted and I kept drinking my problems away. I have always suffered from a low libido, even before hormones. I also hate my body, even from a non-gender perspective, so it was difficult to be intimate when I couldn’t possibly imagine how you would find me attractive. But talking the time and making you climax several times made me feel very happy, as did just lying in bed afterwards and just cuddling and talking until one of us was got up to make coffee. There was no “hate” I promise you.

We’ve drifted apart”
– On the surface, that was true. You were in the living room smoking away, I was in the bedroom drinking my problems away and shutting out the world. But I never stopped loving you or caring for you. I was just so locked inside my head that I was out of my depth and didn’t know what to do or say.  It was the most excruciatingly painful time of my life.  

“I don’t know you anymore”
– S, aside from my gender identity, you knew me better than anyone else on earth and that is still the case. Remove alcohol and gender from the equation and I’m the same person you fell in love with back in 2003; the same person that embraces you at London Heathrow Airport when I saw you for the first told.

“I’d rather you cheated on me than this”
– I’d rather have not done either, but I didn’t cheat. I cheated you by not being honest about my gender identity, but I wasn’t ready to face that. For some reason I thought it was something you might eventually grow up accept and that it would bring us closer, because I’d be happier and stronger for you.

“I’ll never be able to trust anyone again, you betrayed me”
– Yes, I betrayed you and I hate myself for it. I betrayed your trust just like the others did to you and that guilt will eat away at me forever. I take full responsibility. I was supposed to be different – someone you could trust and depend on. I turned your entire word upside down. But you will trust again and that person will be worthy of it. Like me, you’ve had awful luck with people, even within your own family. You did not deserve what I put you through.

“You are selfish “
– Yes, I am. I was selfish to bring you into my fucked up existence with the problems that I had (and still have). I wish you’d never met me. I wish I hadn’t put you through so much stress, but I loved you too much. Too much to the point that I became so worried about you that it overpowered everything else. I was not someone you could confide in – I was an anxious, neurotic mess. It’s taken us splitting up and me un-becoming that weirdo to realize how far gone I was and for years.

“I’m not a lesbian” and “You made me question my sexuality”
– I’m sorry this happened too. But you met me as a male, you slept with me as a male and we got married as a man and a woman. You are off the hook. You were honest from the beginning when you told me you wanted a divorce. You are straight and you need to be with a man. Had I been comfortable with the sex I was assigned at birth and I had I been more “normal” I would have loved to and would have been honored to be that man, someone who could’ve met your needs. This is not on you at all. It’s my fault for not being honest with you or with myself when we met. A parent transitioning to another sex kills most relationships, so don’t feel like it’s just you. It’s rare for a marriage to survive something so drastic. But do I wish it were otherwise? Of course. Only because I think Rebecca could’ve made you happier and been a fat better friend and companion to you, but I don’t blame you at all. I blame myself.

On a final note, I hola that life is being kinder to you. I hope you are able to put the damage I caused behind you and that you meet the right person who can love you as much as I can / do, but in the way that you need and deserve to be loved.

But you will always be my soulmate and my only true love. I don’t remember the fights, I remember us in Paris, or staying at haunted hotels or taking road trips. I remember your goofy sense of humor and how you were a great source of comfort and strength to me. I’ll never forget that you gave me the best years of my life, despite our problems.

“Blow Up The Outside World” 

I had a bad dream last night that involved one of my younger brothers becoming a parent and my jealousy and envy of them.  I know most people probably wouldn’t understand why such a thing would cause me pain, but I have always felt inferior to my 2 younger half brothers.  They are normal, successful, married and not afflicted with the ugly gene that has ruined my life.

The dream plus my dysphoria has left me feeling extremely low. It was a challenge to even get out of bed this morning and take a shower, but I cannot be in my apartment for too long as I am quite literally “cut off” from the outside world.

Chris Cornell’s death is really affecting me.  I listened to an hour long tribute to his life and music on the radio last night on the Nikki Sixx show.  I knew Chris suffered from depression, but I never thought that he’d take his own life or die before his time like many of the other tortured grunge era musicians.    I also thought of an (almost) ex girlfriend of mine who was utterly obsessed with Soundgarden and Chris Cornell. She must be devastated.

I feel utterly burned out for some reason. I think I did too much socializing yesterday.  I think my dysphoria is getting the better of me.   Too much “outside world” exposure and rejection have done a number on me. I’ve given up on the idea of dating and ever becoming functional. I’ve largely given up on myself too.  It’s a permeating sense of defeat that is only going to continue to eat away at me until I can no longer take it.

I’m going to starve myself after I’ve used the food I have left.   I feel like a bloated, huge ugly monster.   I still have too much muscle in my upper arms and shoulders, despite being on HRT for over 3 1/2 years and not producing teaosterone.  If I starve myself, I’ll waste away.   It’ll make me sick, but I don’t care.   I’m disgusted by my body and by food.  I wanted to put a bullet in my head when E noticed the muscle in my right arm.   

I feel like I don’t belong anywhere and the feeling is only getting more intense as I get older.  Society has changed, I have no love in my life and most of my idols are dead.  I can’t even look at the news anymore because it scares me to death.  I feel like I’m just waiting to die.

This corner of New York is my “home” 

The one thing I’ll say is that despite my bad experiences with meeting people and despite my loneliness, the help that I’ve received here in New York in terms of my mental and physical health and my transition has been better than anywhere else I’ve lived.  The same goes for the public assistance I’ve received and the dignity in which I’ve been treated.  I am extremely grateful for all of it, because I wouldn’t have received the same level of care in the UK and certainly not in Florida.

The weather can be a pain in the ass and the winters are long and brutal, the people here don’t have a filter when it comes to comments and questions and Rochester isn’t the safest city on earth.  However, it has become familiar to me and I’m slowly getting used to it.  The fact that I’ve struggled to make friends is more to do with me and my problems than Rochester.  There are a lot of shady, sketchy people here but there are also a lot of good people. It is blue collar, which I prefer.   I’d have a better chance of making friends here than I had in South Florida or even the UK, where I felt like a foreigner.  I’ve had opportunities to make friends (and more than friends), but I fucked up each time.  I just wasn’t ready and I’m probably still not ready, despite how lonely I am.

I’m done with moving from place to place anyway.   I finally have a sense of stability and I have a better chance of recovering here than I do anywhere else.    Even though I ended up here almost accidentally, this corner of New York is my home now. Running away again wouldn’t solve anything.  I’d struggle to make friends anywhere just because of who and what I am.  Besides, when I get to the point that I’m as functional as I can be, I want to stay here and give something back, even if it’s just in the form of working and paying taxes and donating to the organizations that have helped me.

I know that most of what I write would be labeled as “negative”, but I do appreciate what I’ve got.  Now that the name change process is almost over, I want to look towards going to school to prepare myself for eventually returning to work, better qualified and hopefully in a better state of mind.  There is a lot of damage to be repaired though and some of it isn’t repairable.

Facing the very likely prospect of losing my health insurance and healthcare 

I’m trying to be strong in facing the very real prospect that I may lose my healthcare, but it isn’t working.  I had to take 5 Seroquel just to fall asleep.  I had a dream in which I was in Paris and trying to find S, because she was in trouble.  I woke up in tears.

Trump’s healthcare bill probably won’t pass the Senate, but knowing my (awful) luck, it will.  When I lose my health insurance then my healthcare, the only prescription I’ll be able to pay for is my estrogen.  Having just had an orchiectomy, I don’t need to take blockers anymore and I can live without progesterone.  I’ll cut down from 8mg a day to 4mg a day of estrogen, which I should be able to pay for out of pocket, though I won’t be able to afford internet access at home.  Because I’ve had the orchiectomy done and I’ve got the court order to change my name, Trump can’t ruin my transition unless I’m forced to use my old name and tied down and forced to take testosterone shots.

But even though my transition is relatively safe, I’m still in big trouble…

I take 4 different psych meds, 2 of which I know have been having positive effects.  I would most likely have to go cold turkey on all of them. I see a therapist once a week and I’d imagine that won’t be possible anymore.  I will lose all of the help and advocacy I get through care management too, because that is also currently covered by Medicaid.    I may even lose the limited support that I get at my treatment housing.

What terrifies me is that I’m going to be completely “on my own”.   I have no family or friends in this city or even in this state.  I can barely do anything on my own in the outside world here beyond what I’m doing now (and even that is often too much).  I will have to go to so many potentially triggering and even unsafe places on my own and I don’t see how that will even be possible.  I’ve had too many bad experiences in this city as it is, even when here have been people literally holding my hand to support me.    I will be reliant on the bus system here, which I’ve barely been able to use, except for one route and only at certain times.

A friend online told me I should “prepare for the worst” and contact my family in the UK to help me make plans to leave, if the healthcare bill passes.  In the past, my online friends had been urging me to stay despite the election result, but now the same friends are completely silent.  I stopped talking to my mum last month, because she wouldn’t help me return to the UK before when it looked unlikely that I’d be able to change my legal name. I certainty can’t ask her, because I already know the answer.  As for my dad, he thinks that I only contact him when I need money, so I can’t contact him either.  I’m sure both of my parents are aware of what’s happening in the news here in the US and they must know that the healthcare bill will be devastating for me and countless others like me, if it becomes law.  I have no other family in the UK. I have a friend that said she’s willing to let me stay with her and her husband.   However, I don’t have enough money to pay for the cost of getting there or supporting myself for long enough until I can find a job that I can do or be eligible for public assistance, which I’d have to wait 3 months for due to ‘habitual residency’ rules.  I’m in deep shit this time though and it isn’t just me ‘over thinking’.  This could become law and it could happen very quickly.   I can almost hear my family say “Well, you chose to go back to America“.   If they’re even thinking about it having seen the news, I’m pretty sure that’s what they’d still say to me, but I already know that I fucked up and that it was a terrible decision on my part.  Because despite the help I’ve received, I’ve had so many bad experiences since I arrived last July, including losing the friend that encouraged me to come back to Rochester in the first place.   I didn’t think that it would all turn to shit less than a year later.   The only major ‘positive’ is that I got the orchiectomy and I got my name changed.   I’d never have got an orchiectomy on the British NHS.  I would’ve had to wait 2-3 years for SRS before my body would no longer be producing testosterone.    I still want full SRS, but there is no longer any urgency.   

Even if I could return to the UK tomorrow, it would be heartbreaking, given the fact that I’ve gone through so much and have finally got a court order to change my name and begin my life.    I had even started to consider this city and this state as my home, despite not having any friends or family here.  But I don’t see how I’d be able to stay if the rug gets pulled from underneath me. I recall writing something a few weeks ago along the lines of “If you were to remove all of the care that I receive, I’d be completely and utterly alone”.  Now that seems like a very real and very terrifying prospect, in a city where I’ve had many bad experiences and no friends or acquaintances.  Let’s be honest, I won’t last 2 seconds.  If I had an idea of when the axe will fall on my healthcare and care, perhaps I could work with my care manager and therapist to “prepare”, if there was enough time (months rather than weeks).  I want to find a job that I can do and work, but who is going to hire me and how will I get to and cope with interviews?   If I had family or friends here, this wouldn’t be quite as scary, but I don’t.   I will become completely socially isolated and unable to cope with the loneliness and absence of support.  

Even if the healthcare bill doesn’t pass the Senate, they’ll tinker with it enough for it to become law next time around, which is what happened with Obamacare.     It may be less ‘brutal’ when it gets watered down, but I’m pretty sure it will still hurt transgender people.   I don’t understand why the most vulnerable people are being targeted at all, but it’s almost sadistic and it’s totally unnecessary.  

Stop TrumpCare in the Senate – National Centrt for Transgender Equality

But just as before, I’m willing to take my own life, if it comes to that.  I already have a plan – the same plan that I’ve had in my head for the last few months.  I’m far more afraid of continuing life than I am of death.  Perhaps it’s time; it’s not as if I’m happy with my life or body and it’s not as if I have anything or anyone to lose.  My prospects don’t look good, even if I don’t lose my healthcare.  Not only am I hated by society and marginalized from it, but those in power want to destroy me and countless others like me who are part of the LGBT community and / or mentally ill.  I wish they’d just put a bullet in my head and put me out of my misery, rather than subject me to more pain, which will force me to take my own life.   I’m pretty sure that I’m not the only one willing to die over this.  I wish those people would let me know that they exist, rather than people who either blindly tell me to carry on or those who are enjoying watching me suffer.  

I feel like I’ve failed at transition

I don’t like discussing my transition at great length and I certainly don’t feel safe doing it here, but I have to. This blog is supposed to be a place of unfiltered honesty.

I feel like I’ve failed at transition.  The events of the last few weeks (some of which I have already written about) have caused a tidal wave of dysphoria and self-hatred.  It isn’t the harassment that has tipped me over the edge, but the ‘well meaning’ comments and an accidental misgendering at the hospital last Tuesday, just after my surgery.     The well meaning comments came from people involved in my care. One comment was along the lines of “Your cheekbones look very feminine, are they implants?” and “So, are you going to get top surgery next?”.  Firstly, my cheekbones are natural and secondly, thank you for reminding me that I have small breasts.  Though, you’d never say that to a cisgender woman who was also naturally small.  In general, people have been treating me as if I’d just started transition, or at least that’s how it seems.  I’ve been told to accept accidental misgendering, which I can not as I do not believe that it’s ever okay to misgender someone.    I’ve had assumptions made about me that my problems are because I’m transgender.  I’ve been told by 3 people to join a transgender group. 

I want to scream.  

I have been politely asking people for years not to comment on my transition, because it is a huge trigger.  Up until relatively recently, no one had bothered me about it and I had managed to completely avoid transgender people up until a few months ago, when I let my guard down again and again, which ended up hurting me.  Now, even staff at my care provider believe that I’m transphobic.  I’m not transphobic…I just want to be able to live my life without constantly being reminded of being transgender, because I’m obviously so damn ugly that people feel the need to either harass me, pity me or reassure me that I’m “becoming” the woman that I am.

I’m done.

What chance do I have in the outside world when I’m constantly being triggered and hurt in what are supposed to be “safe places”?  This has all been a waste and I wish I’d tried harder to find an alternative to transitioning, as this individual has:

I Am A Transwoman. I Am In The Closet. I Am Not Coming Out.

But I can’t go back to the other prison either.   I’m mentally drained from doing the bare minimum to survive.  The outside world is a far scarier place than I’d even imagined and both people and the mirror have made me feel like a total failure.  Why can’t people just leave it alone and accept my word that I don’t want or need to discuss this?  Will I have to hear “I accept you”, “You’re so brave” and “I don’t judge you” for the rest of my life?    This is making me bitter and hateful on top of all else.

I blame the trans ‘visibility’ movement for some of this.   It has ignited unhealthy and intrusive curiosity.   I wish I’d never listened to BYPs (‘be yourself’ people) because they just used my coming out as transgender as a rebellion against normalcy, while they continued to be ‘nornal’ and turned their backs on me.  

I am a woman, but I don’t want to be a transgender woman.   I would be perfectly content to just be seen as an ugly woman and left the fuck alone. 

My ‘goals’ are clearer now…

I haven’t updated this blog for a while.  I had an orchiectomy done on Tuesday, meaning that I no longer need to take blockers.  Being in hospital was a traumatic experience and coming home to an empty apartment after surgery caused extreme feelings of loneliness.  The pain isn’t that bad, though I’m going to be somewhat restricted for the next 2-3 weeks.

Being forced to deal with the outside world and losing internet access at home has proven to be detrimental to my mental health.  The outside world is a far scarier place than I’d imagined.   I was better off avoiding it and existing almost solely as an online entity.  I have far more control over my interactions with people online than I do in the outside world.  I don’t want to go into it because it isn’t safe to here, but I’ve had a lot of bad experiences lately that have caused me a massive amount of dysphoria and self-hatred.  

On the other hand, E (one of the 2 residents I talk to) and I are not only talking again, but I feel like we have a lot in common.  I spent hours at her place yesterday and we just talked and listened to late 90’s / early 00’s music as we are both around the same age.  She also feels like an outcast and that nobody accepts her here, though I see absolutely nothing about her that anyone needs to “accept”.  She’s a cool girl and an amazing writer. We are both bisexual and she even said she’d date me.  It’s certainly not out of the question, especially as I’ve already let my guard down with her.   I would worry about negativity directed towards her from other residents, especially as she deals with enough crap. 

I have therapy this afternoon and I’m seeing the nurse to help me deal with the aftermath of my surgery.  I  want to work and go to school, which is what I am planning on talking to my therapist about.  I worry that I’m unemployable and that I’m unlikely to find an employer willing to accommodate my mental health issues (mainly anxiety).  School would be a good start, as it would help me prepare for work and would make me far more employable.  I’d probably need to pass a GED test first, as I never finished the equivalent of high school in the UK.  I thought about changing careers and even becoming a truck driver, but I think I’m going to stick with accounting and finance.  It may not be the most exciting field, but it’s what I know and it doesn’t require people skills.  I’m also going to talk to my therapist about eventually moving to NYC, as I find big cities less anxiety provoking because you’re anonymous.

Of course. I have to find someone willing to come to Social Security with me first to give them the court order so they can change my name, finally.  I hope that can be done next week, as I’m still in limbo.

I crave normalcy and I’m tired of sitting still and just getting older and uglier.  I want to focus on other things beyond gender.  I want to feel like a human being, not a transgender freak.  I’m at the point where I’m done with trying to date people and make friends.    The outside world has done a number on me over the last few weeks and it’s changing me.  I’m becoming an asshole and I’m becoming confrontational.  I could get away with it before I transitioned, but I won’t get away with it now. But I’m sick of continually staying silent and internalizing the pain that others cause me, while they walk away and have a good laugh.c  I’m sick of people pitying me or telling me they “accept” me.    I’m sick of being told how “brave” I am.  You can call me brave when I’m living independently and being a productive member of society, despite being a freak and a weirdo with mental health issues.   My goals are clear now: work, school and move to NYC.   I’m going to take my focus off transition, gender and finding love, as those subjects are causing me too much pain.

Transition took away my ability to ‘fight back’ 

** TRIGGER WARNING **

I look hideous, even more so than usual.   The left side of my ugly forehead is discolored and blotchy from all the bruises after I punched myself in the head repeatedly during my ‘breakdown’ last Friday.   I also cut the word ‘ugly’ into the underside of my left arm.  I look like I’ve been in a fight, only this was a fight with myself and my self-hatred.  My therapist tells me not to internalize my pain, but externalizing it would be more dangerous.  


As this blog is ^meant* to be a place of total honesty, I’ll admit that de-transition has been on my mind a lot lately.  I have been trying to think of ways that could possibly make it work:  The only way it could possibly work is if I were able to quite literally remove myself from the human race and spend the rest of my life existing as a hermit, with no human contact to remind me.  Going non-binary wouldn’t work because I don’t do compromises well and I’m female.   I would de-transition if I could, because being transgender is just another prison, equally as awful as the last one.  But when I think about de-transition, I feel nauseous at the thought of going back to being seen as male by everyone.   I remember how much I hated myself, but I still hate myself now, only it would probably be worse.
But I miss appearing ‘normal’ and just blending in. I miss the freedom I once had, whereby I could go wherever I wanted to go.    I still had severe anxiety, but I hid it well beneath my mask, even coming across as confident and assertive.  No one knew my weaknesses unless they knew me personally.

I generally won the battles that I fought.   I felt more confident taking individuals and organizations on, knowing that no one could hurt me, because no one had to know my weaknesses.  My decision to fight back after being both harassed and discriminated against by that security guard is that I need to prove to myself that I can still stand up for myself and win.   In taking legal action, I realize that I’m taking a huge risk. I face the anxiety of possibly having to go to court and speak in front of a judge and dozens of other people that I don’t know.    If I lose this battle, it’ll mean that no matter whether or not I live in a state or country with good anti-discrimination laws, individuals and organizations will get away with subjecting me to harassment and discrimination severe enough to place my mental health at risk.  That is a sobering thought and a scary prospect.   It means that the rest of my existence will be a case of either being forced to deal with abuse or continue to place the energy that I don’t have on battles that I’ll just lose anyway. If it’s allowed to happen at a place that is supposed to be “safe” for people in my situation, it will happen anywhere and I won’t have an entourage of care managers, therapists and support workers to protect me and advocate for me.

If I were to win this battle, I know that it would empower me and it’d make me feel like this isn’t as hopeless as I thought it was.  I’d be getting back a part of myself that I thought I’d lost and that would give me a lot of strength.    Losing will be devastating, both for me and for what I consider to be the bigger picture when it comes to protecting vulnerable people.

I don’t want a life of endless battles because of my gender identity and ugliness.   It’s too much to deal with on top of my mental health and situational issues.