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Courage in coming out
Courage to be who you are
It took me 47 years to finally come to accept who I am as a person and to finally come out and announce it in a public setting. I actually came out on Facebook and in my blogs and I am so much happier for doing so. I feel a huge burden has been lifted and now I can finally feel free at last. There is something very liberating when you come out and tell those most closest to you something you could never do before. I just felt it was the right time. Sometimes we don't really know the right time but this time I felt it was because I was finally ready to admit what I knew all along and knew that if I did not then in all likelihood I never would have revealed it and I could not bear that fate. There were times earlier in my life when I desperately wanted to come out and announce to my family and friends that I was transgender and that I wanted to transition to become female. Now it finally is a reality for me and I feel much better about it and I am much happier in revealing my deepest, darkest and very painful secret. It is never easy to come to terms with being transgender. I remember a 4 year old little boy crying wondering why he always felt he was a girl though when he saw his reflection that is not what he saw in reality and this made him feel very sad and all alone. That little boy was me and it has been a life long struggle.
I am in a good place now as I finally start my transition towards womanhood. I still have to pinch myself to make sure it is real and that I am not dreaming. I now cry tears of joy where as before I cried tears of sadness and frustration. I have come a long way and just wish to be happy. I want to live my life as I felt I always should have and I will always be involved in my son's life as he is my everything. I want my son to know my love for him and his mom will always be unwavering and always faithful and enduring.
I don't know why I have been affected in this way but it is very real and it is a very emotional, painful and isolated struggle that has been a major part of my life since I was just a little kid. i would not want to wish this on anyone but it is something I have no control over. I firmly believe that I was born this way and I have grown to accept that and feel this is just me and that makes me truly special. I have grown to appreciate being transgender and now I welcome my journey with excitement and eagerness as I have started my regiment of hormones and electrolysis to help effect the change in my gender which will help me portray as a female. It does not happen over night. In fact it is a gradual change but since I have been on estradiol and spironolactone I have noticed some positive change in my appearance and my emotional state. I am much more feminine in my look and I feel more sedate and I now have an inner peace I never had before.
I knew I was very different when I was a kid because the only time I was happy was when I was wearing girls clothes and could express my femininity. I never wanted to wear my boy clothes but I had no choice so when I could I would sleep in my favorite girl clothes and that made me very happy. I was very careful doing this so I never would be seen by my parents. It was like night and day for me the feelings I had when I could be the girl I always felt inside. I managed to dress and act like a girl whenever I had alone time and I made sure I was never seen by anyone including my parents and my sisters. This is why I became very isolated in my childhood because i had to keep this my secret that I could never tell anyone. I was ashamed of my feelings but I was never going to stop dressing or desiring being feminine. It was who I was.
I started to take it upon myself to learn what exactly was going on with me and I would look in the library for any kind of book that would address these feelings I had and the dressing up. I remember the first book I came upon that affected me and helped shed light on my situation was a book about Rene Richards who was a professional tennis player as a male and had successfully undergone surgery to become a woman and was identified as a transsexual. I finally realized what I was dealing with and I was not afraid. In fact I felt a feeling of calm and I came to accept fully my transgender situation. At that time I never knew about transgender nor identified myself to others that way though I knew deep down that I was meant to be a girl and would eventually have to confront my feelings. I was not sure when exactly but I knew instinctively.
The complexity of life made it hard for me to integrate my feelings or reveal them to anyone and so I tried desperately to live a "normal life". I was very shy and never felt comfortable with people in general. i was very much a loner but I did not want to be alone. I was just trying to find my way. I had a wonderful childhood despite my internal struggles and I was very fortunate to have wonderful parents but I was very alone and depressed. There were times when I did not want to go on and even tried to alleviate my inner pain by taking an overdose of sleeping pills. I managed to survive these feelings and go on to graduate college studying mechanical engineering and accounting. I was very depressed when I lost my mother in my 20's. She suffered from depression and was diagnosed with manic depression and schizophrenia and had died from starvation in the hospital at the age of 49. It really devastated me and i needed to seek help in dealing with this tragedy, my dad's painful loneliness in the aftermath of mom's death and my transgender struggles.
I remember the first time I went to inquire about my transgender feelings. I actually drove down to Virginia Beach, Virginia when I was in between jobs to a gender identity clinic where I came out and expressed my true feelings. I truly wanted to go through with transitioning back then when I was in my early 30's. I was very aware of my situation and knew this was what i really had to consider. The problem was that I was not able to come to terms with it so I just tried my best to avoid this part of me and forge on as a male. I was cross dressing frequently and that was my way of dealing with my situation.
It was several years after this awakening and visiting the clinic in Virginia and my mom's passing that I finally started seeking therapy. I was going for several years discussing my transgender ways, my feelings on meeting a girl and my desire to have a family one day.
My therapist convinced me that I should try to meet a nice girl and to not consider my feelings of transgender. I was confused but I tried to do just that. It was not easy but I felt it was in my best interest. I was also introduced to a girl 10 years younger through my therapist and I was at an age when i felt it was finally time to focus on building a relationship and marrying. I was thrilled with meeting Maria and we did in fact marry after dating for a year. We soon married and had our son Matty within the year which was a very happy time for me.
I thought everything would be perfect and my transgender feelings would go away but as I have come to realize they never do go away. My son has inspired me in my life to write due to his struggles with autism and I also gravitated to writing as a result of my dad's depression which ultimately led to his tragic suicide. I was once again devastated and when I started writing I began to unload my feelings and dedicated my writings to both my dad and my son. I was proud of my son and started to focus on his situation and so my blog came to life which I started to write on a regular basis to and I officially identified it as "A Father's Love, My Son and Autism." I still write in this blog and have also contributed my writings on my own personal struggles with transgender.
I was going through some very emotional feelings between my son's struggles, the aftermath of my dad's suicide and my transgender feelings that I knew I was in need of seeking a therapist once again. I started to identify once again with my feelings of transgender and had to address these feelings once again. I finally realized I could no longer run away from them and so i finally came out in a big way. I came out in my blog announcing I am transgender. I also came out to my employer and indicated that I planned to go full time as a woman in transitioning. They were not receptive and so I was then provided an opportunity by way of my former employer who helped pave the way for me to work for a medical office where they were open to my situation and trusted in my professional abilities. I began my transition on September 5, 2012 and am on my way towards becoming a woman.
I am committed to my son, my wife, my family, my employer, my career and to me in my transition and I am finally at peace and happy. I dress and present as Emily and I plan to write a book of my experiences which is a work in progress. I am still not sure about SRS but am exploring that possibility but my priority is my son and his needs and my desire to send him to college. I will continue to write and to appreciate my life which I must say is a good one.
i am very lucky to have the support of my family, my friends, my coworkers and my employer and i am truly grateful. Love to my family always.