Well, that is my initial meeting with the psychologist done with.
My meeting was at 11 so I went for a shower and a shave at 10, put on my jeans and a thin hoody and then when I got to my home office I put the, “In a meeting” sign on the door so my son wouldnt interrupt, put on my hair and gave it a brush and completed the look with some lippy. Casual DeeDee today aiming for simple but not too noticeable if I had to whip my hair off to go and deal with an emergency (because..life!)
The psychologist was bang on time and really nice, I didn’t even get a chance to paint my nails which is what I intended to do in the virtual waiting room, but as she explained what we would be doing I realised that I have so much personal history to talk about that it will take a few more sessions before she gets up to speed. I expected this, my initial appointment at my GIC lasted 2.5 hrs and I talked non stop. She asked how I was feeling and I said an almost equal mixture of nerves and excitement but that I understood that I needed to talk to her as the next step of moving forwards which was why I had made the appointment when I had (2 years ago lol).
The hour went by ridiculously fast and she asked me to talk about when I started realising I was trans, so I skimmed over a few things and started with my marriage breakdown and the D&D party where I first realised I didn’t want to go back to being my male self and how that had led me down the internet rabbithole of questioning.
My big worry is that I suspect she will want me to transition socially for a year before allowing me to start HRT. Which I do not want to do. I explained that the main reason that I am where I am is simply because of the restrictions and lockdowns and that actually I intend to transition anyway, we seemed to spend a lot of time talking about the end of my marriage and then a little about my kids and what I have already done to start my transition as well as who I had told and she kept switching tracks on me so I could not just go through my life chronologically which I would have found easier. It honestly felt so piecemeal and scattershot that I did not feel like we really got anywhere and that she got any feeling for who I am, let alone why I feel that I socially present as a woman anyway and would prefer the world to view me as one.
She wants to dig more into my experiences growing up and talk more about moving forwards and where I see myself in a few years time, but she called me DeeDee all the way through the appointmnet which felt great though my voice did not want to be my friend today so it was basically just my usual voice which is not bad, but not great either.
The problem with having gone through so much in my life is that any one of the things I’ve done or experienced is interesting for a psychologist to explore let alone explaining why I feel like I am more than just someone who crossdresses (if I was, I would be living my best life and just not be there) so at a rate of one hour long appointment every 3 months I could still be talking to her in a year or two and not have fully covered everything that makes me, me!
I was open and honest and talked about my fears when I started questioning and how insurmountable they felt, and how at the time I viewed HRT as something that would be able to confirm being transgender as well as stopping me looking like a man in a dress, but that now while things are still scary I fully intend to transition regardless of whether I can start HRT yet or not; but I don’t know if that came across as me being challenging or disappointed or not.
Towards the end she asked if I had any questions or points I wanted to clarify and so I stressed that I have spoken to multiple people and each and every time I speak to someone new it is difficult for me to talk to them about this as I am not naturally trusting of complete strangers, and that I would not be here if I was not certain of where I want to go.
She just repeated that her job is simply to keep the process within WPATH guidelines and that she understands that I am having to open up about some really personal issues. As if talking to a total stranger about your sexual preferences and fantasies from the age of 14 onwards, because it got tied into the secret of wearing womens clothing as a teenager whilst also trying to explain that horny daydreams are not the central reason for why you feel you are in the wrong body is only about as awkward as asking for no cream or marshmallows on a hot chocolate. There is NO ONE I feel comfortable talking to about that stuff, that’s why I explored all of that on my own!
But at my next visit I expect more of that as well as having to explain more about why I want to go on hormones in the first place, which is why even though it is not “gatekeeping” in the traditional sense, but viewed by the NHS as a 3rd party confirmation of the work done by the local gender team it still feels like I have to prove my existence and back up my intent in order to gain the official approval to do things my way rather than follow some arbitrarily decided timeline written down by somoene who was A> not living my life; and B> blatently not trans, because if they wanted to get rid of dysphoria making you live as the opposite sex for a year full time and come out to all your family, your friends and your work without any medical intervention whatsoever is not going to lessen the emotional and mental strain and trauma but increase it!
It’s a f*cking stupid dinosaur of a system. I get the need for living for 2 years before surgery because after 2 yrs the honeymoon period is over with and you have dealt with almost everything you are going to have to deal with as a woman and therefore dangerous surgical procedures are not being carried out on a whim, but for hormones it makes no sense to me whatsoever, and I am also pretty sure is not an actual WPATH requirement so I may look up the guidelines to have with me before the next meeting in case it is suggested and just not be so passive. For me the two big boons will be the assistance with getting rid of my body hair (which is one of my biggest personal dysphoria triggers) and the unquantifiable mental boost to actually getting in touch with my emotions the way I want to be because I finally have the right hormones. Having the fat move around to make the clothes fit better will be nice but would happen on a much slower timescale regardless. I already know that I am not going to be perfectly made up every day and I have no interest in buying and wearing shaping pads on a daily basis just mini fillets and padded bras so even without everyone knowing my business and history I am going to be read or clocked or generally look odd anyway unless I take to shaving everywhere multiple times daily.
I am trying to minimise my own period of discomfort (as well as reduce the awkwardness for my kids who will have to be seen in public with me, we all know that high school kids can be vicious) and I hate that I have to justify my reasoning to yet another random – this Dr is professional number 5 that I am sharing my life story with, yippee!
I also hate feeling so defensive!
So overall and for the TLDR folks: a good first meeting but also frustrating because I am trying to compress my entire life into small bitesize chunks and assign significance to them for someone who does not know me at all.
Now to top it all off, the babywipe I used to clean off my mascara has reacted with my face and I have red puffy skin under my eyes!
Take care and stay safe