I almost wrote “passed my first assessment”, but realised it was just not the right word.
Passing infers it was some kind of gender test that I could pass or fail, and if I can fail then I can’t truly be transgender. Therefore I must pass.That kind of thought process is the simple result of gatekeeping. What would I do if I was told no?
By now I have long since accepted that my brain and my body do not match. The stable is empty and the door is wide open. I have told so many people that I see and feel as a woman and not a man that regardless of whether I was allowed to take hormones I could not put that particular bunny back in it’s box. I am going to live my truth no matter what happens.
So instead I have completed my first assessment.
The psychologist mentioned how happy and relaxed I looked and how different it is to our first session.
I remember it well! I had a chair up against the door because I was paranoid about my son coming home from school early and was nervous about telling my whole story to a stranger yet again.
This time my son was already at home in the other room and had been calling me DeeDee all day. In fact because he is having to isolate all week I have been able to be myself all week too, you have no idea what a simple joy it is to go to sleep and wake up with your nails still sparkling!
My happiness is due to knowing that other than when it is needed for my work I do not have to hide who I am to my friends or family, and fairly soon I will move to a new area and just live as myself all the time. I am ready and waiting for the right place to come up.
She told me that she was willing to give me my official diagnosis of gender dysphoria and transexualism (her words not mine) and that she would recommend me to start on hormone treatment. The gender clinic will have access to the updated notes and should get in touch shortly.
She then went over the impact and side effect specifically asking about my masturbation habits and libido. Not that I am going to repeat that here, but let’s just say that as someone who has not been cherished and has a low sense of self, as someone who has not been sexually active for a number of years and who does not see being transgender as something that will help themselves finding a special someone anytime soon I told her I have pretty much resigned myself to the likelihood of being alone.
She scolded me for being so pessimistic and told me that as I grow into myself as a person and become more confident in my identity as a woman then that in itself may attract a partner whether cis or trans.
This assessment covers my hormone treatment starting but also covers breast augmentation if I choose to have it later down the line. She did tell me that when I want GRS (something we have already discussed) that I would need to come back for a second assessment.
I asked her if she was involved in providing documentation for legal name changes and she told me that she had only been asked once for a supporting letter in the time she had been working at Sandyford, so she did not know much about the process but she would happily provide me with one if I needed.
Later in the week my counsellor was happy for me, she was certain the gender clinic will be in touch with me soon as I will need to attend to get my bloods checked. (They actually tried calling while I was on the phone to her but didn’t call me back, so I left a message and hopefully will be called next week – typical!)
It feels nice to have a formal diagnosis. I do not need it, but now no one can say that it is either something I have rushed into or that it is all in my head.
A completely unrelated proffessional who gets nothing either way has spent 9 months (it sounds better than 3 sessions lol) analyzing me and has given me the formal diagnosis. Apart from that I have seen or spoken to a gender counsellor every 2 weeks for over a year, I have spoken to a work counsellor over a period of 6 months and I have had 3-4 appointments at the gender clinic where I have bared my soul to total strangers and their student nurses. I have talked about my childhood, my teen years, my adult life, my sense of attraction and isolation and my tastes, I have shared dreams and fantasies and the confusing realities of my existence and no one. Not one single professional has turned around and said anything other than positive things to me.
I have been told more than once that I am kind hearted, caring and empathetic; I have been called resilient, brave, a role model, an optimist and a glass half full kind of girl.
As someone who started all of this with no sense of personal identity, those professionals will never know how much those throw away comments in our conversations were replayed in my head and taken on board.
Hopefully they will have built me up enough emotional resilience for the negative remarks and comments I will no doubt receive when I update my socials and effectively go public. I have the support of the people who matter, but while I can logically argue that I will inevitably get upset on an emotional level by the people who don’t.
I am still growing into myself, I am really looking forward to starting hormones and the changes they will bring, and I know that my personal journey is not even close to being over!