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Prologue – F@ck Dysphoria

Dealing with dysphoria when taking the first steps of transition and starting the journey to finding self-acceptance.

When I was first asked to contribute to Transgender Universe, I was beyond honored for the opportunity, not only to share my story, but also for the chance to get my writings out somewhere where real people would be reading. As an aspiring author, I've been working for years to find the best version of my written voice and to also find somebody who would be as excited to read my story as I was to share it.

Once the excitement had settled in, I became increasingly anxious. I've been a reader of TU for a little less than a year, and the stories that I've read have inspired me in ways that I don’t think I could ever properly express. If I was going to join such a group of people, I needed something that would be meaningful and that hopefully, would be well accepted. My biggest fear was telling the same story that's been told a hundred times already… while all of us go through our own journeys, in the beginning, many of us walk the exact same path towards first accepting ourselves for whom we truly are inside; then reaching out in hopes that others will accept us as lovingly as they did prior to our awakening.

So how do I set out to share my story in a new and exciting way? One in which my readers would hopefully latch on and become as engrossed in as I have been telling it. I decided that maybe placing a small twist to the style would be best. I already have my own blog postings, many of which I have re-posted over on the Trans Central Station side of this wonderful website. So for my official posts, I decided that I'm going to tell my story, not as an article, but as a story. So each week, I will be adding the next chapter of my story of transition and becoming the real me. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I've enjoyed writing it.

Prologue – Fuck Dysphoria

"I can't do this," I shouted, trying to hold back the tears.

"Yes you can," my wife pleaded. She wrapped her arms around me, cradling me in her loving warmth. "You look beautiful."

"You have to say that…I look like an asshole," my body was shaking. I could feel my lungs squeezing in my body as panic overtook me. "This whole thing is so stupid, what was I thinking?" The first tear finally broke free and started to run down my cheek. I watched in what felt like slow motion.

"I don’t have to say anything, if I thought you didn't look right, I would tell you the truth. I would never let you walk out of the house if I didn’t think you looked good. My wife is the most beautiful woman I know, and I cannot wait to show her to the world."

"TODAY, I WOULD FINALLY BE THE REAL ME."

More tears began to stream down my cheeks, leaving small lines through the foundation that was keeping the few unshaven hairs of my beard from showing. I took a deep breath, squeezed my eyes shut and tried to overcome my anxiety. Today, I would not let the dysphoria beat me. Today, I would finally be the real me. I slowly opened my eyes; they were immediately drawn into the mirror… to my nose, my chin, my forehead, but most of all, to the ridiculous looking wig that was supposed to put the finishing touches on my transformation. I let out of scream of frustration and ripped the hair from my head, my thinning hairline exposed to make all of my other male features even more prominent.

I rushed from the bathroom, unable to look at myself any longer. My wife chased after me, "Honey, please listen to me." But I was already throwing the breast forms across the room and reaching behind me to unhook my bra.

"Get these things out of my sight," I pleaded. "Preferably in the garbage, I'm never wearing them again."

"I will put them away for you, but they are NOT going in the garbage. You will wear them again, and proudly," she insisted. She put her hands on my shoulders and gently pushed me down to a seated position. She knelt in front of me and took my hands in hers. "I love you, so very much. You are gorgeous; I am not saying that because you are my wife. I am saying that because I honestly and genuinely believe it. I know how hard this is for you, but we will get past it… together. We will call in every favor we need to, we will get you a better wig, we can have somebody teach you… hell teach us both, how to best work with makeup."

She pulled her phone out and showed me the one picture of myself where I was wearing proper makeup. The smile on my face glowed on the screen; it's the only solo picture of me where I looked genuinely happy. "This version of you will exist again, I promise you that."

She took my face in her hands and gently kissed me. When our lips separated, the smile finally started to return to me. "I love you, thank you for putting up with all my madness."

"I love you too," she replied. "I love every part, and every version of you."

You’re so lucky to be married to your wife. I’m lucky too in that she supported me, but we needed to be divorced. Intellectually she understood but emotionally not so much. And I was hamstrung by fears of hurting and disappointing her.

I’m looking forward to more from you.

1

I meant to refer to my wife as “she” not yours!

I posted a comment the other day and don’t see it. It was certainly innocuous and, I hoped, encouraging. If you’re not going to show readers comments I have little motivation to write.

Hi Emma. Thank you for the support and I apologize that the replies weren't posted quicker. I'm still figuring out all of the settings and didn't realize that I may have had to approve your reply before it posted and it's been a very busy weekend with some Pride events so I hadn't been able to approve it before today. I wish you all of the best and hope you have found happiness as yourself since your divorce.

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