15 décembre 2009

I reject the male label but am I transsexual?

I’ve been having many questions about my gender identity and I was hoping for your team’s opinion (Obviously, I should talk to an actual therapist too). Even since the beginning of high school (I’m in my first year of college) I’ve become increasingly feminine, from growing my hair out, to wearing eyeliner and colorful nail polish, even wearing female clothing because I liked the look and feel in a non-erotic way, and I enjoy a more girlish nature. I’ve never hated my gender, and I always enjoyed boyish games at a young age. In fact it wasn’t until the beginning of high school that I had showed signs. I did not know of transsexualism then, but I went through a period where I rejected the label male. I think that it’s more than possible that I’m transsexual, but that I reject it because I’m deeply in love with a girl. Is it possible that I’m transsexual? If so, is it possible that I’m holding myself back for the reason stated and that it might be sorted out if I talk to her?

Philip Borden

Hi Jesse,
Thank you for coming to us with your question. As I’m sure you realize, the decision to live as another gender is a very big decision. And yes, you should probably consult a therapist before considering hormone therapy or any sort of reassignment surgery.
You asked if it’s possible that you are transsexual. You yourself said that you believe that it is possible. I agree that you could be transsexual but keep in mind that many transsexuals report having always known or having felt that something was always off, without being able to pinpoint it.
Have you ever tried «passing»? Naturally, before deciding to live the rest of your life as a woman, you might want spend a day walking around as a woman. If you were transsexual, you’d likely feel more comfortable passing as a woman than as man.
Maybe you like the idea of accentuating your feminine side but still want to identify as a man physically. Maybe you’d rather identify as androgynous, if you’re not comfortable with the label male. I could understand why one would reject such a label for more philosophical reasons though.
You say that you enjoy the feel of women’s clothing in a “non-erotic way”. That probably means that what you’re experiencing is not transvestic fetishism. I wouldn’t rule it out completely though.
It’s important to realize that no matter what anybody else’s perspective is, only you can tell for sure what feels right for you. This will likely take a long time to sort out, since you seem to be on the fence about it.
You might want to avoid talking to your girlfriend about this until you’ve arrived at some sort of decision. I don’t know your girlfriend, of course, but certain people might be upset by the idea of their significant other changing genders.
Good luck Jesse! Try to just live your life and not obsess over this. When the time is right you’ll know want to do. Please come back to us with any more questions you may have or to follow up.
Philip for AlterHéros