I have my next meeting at the Gender Identity Clinic on Thursday!
Yeah, gulp. How does that make me feel? Anxious, divided, undecided, excited, shaky, positive, disloyal, over joyed, frustrated, negative, …… You get the picture!
But surely this should be a good thing. This is what I have been looking forward to, working towards, dreaming about. So what are the problems?
In this day and age, if you are transgender and out of the closet in any way at all, you are constantly bombarded with information, both positive and negative. I may only be out, in the real world, to my immediate family, 2 friends, one of their families, my doctor, my psychiatrist my hairdresser and several other hairdressers up and down the country (including one in France!!), but online I have a presence as Charlotte on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr.
On Twitter, in particular, there is no shortage of self-opinionated people who will tell me that I am wrong, evil, going to hell, a pervert, misguided, a danger to others and much, much more. On the other hand, there are plenty of people who will support me because I only follow people who, on the whole, think like me. Does the support outweigh the hatred because it is not just online that I would get abuse if I were to show the real world my identity.
There are people around me who openly question why a “man” would want to become a woman. Because they cannot understand why a man would give up the privilege that comes with being a man, there is some suspicion that there must be an ulterior motive, such as cheating at sport or gaining access to the ladies toilets! I would be giving up strength, my position in society, friends (probably), I would be gaining things that, once gained are not easily lost, such as breasts, hips, bigotry. This is a decision that once acted on, cannot be completely reversed!
On the issue of toilets, nobody has actually explained to me what the risk is? Presumably the chance of being overheard doing a wee or, presumably worse, accidentally breaking wind on the toilet would be psychologically damaging? I am not sure. One person did suggest that the embarrassment of opening a tampon would be even worse if a “man” could overhear. These things are part of the human condition. We have inherited the Victorian prudishness that has created a society able to keep women down because we cannot bear to speak about bodily fluids, sexual organs or periods. I do not want to use the women’s toilet because I wish to eavesdrop, I wish to use the women’s toilet because I do not feel comfortable in men’s toilets because I am not a man and men’s toilets are utterly disgusting. And they stink. Many men do not like using urinals in case somebody sees their penis, so they use the cubicles. And wee all over the seat. And the floor. And very often the wall too. And often don’t flush even after making a deposit!!! So when I go in the first thing I have to do is clean up, make sure nothing goes on the floor in the puddle of yellow liquid, pull my knickers and trousers down to my upper thighs and sit down on a freshly cleaned seat. Sometimes the state of the sit down toilets are so bad that I have to use the urinals, which brings on my dysphoria. In private toilets, I have not stood to wee for 35 years.
But I digress!
I had a lovely Christmas Holiday. We did not travel anywhere, we stayed at home, shared great food with 2 of the 3 children (and my MiL but you cannot have everything!), entertained the teenage friends of the teenagers for New Year’s Eve, in short, we rested. But there was one little black cloud on my horizon. The GIC appointment. Or more accurately, how to tell my wife about the GIC appointment! I am terrified that this may be our last idyllic Christmas. I have savoured every minute of it, attempting to store it all up in my memory. And I don’t know how to tell her!