I am a post-op transsexual woman. I knew from a very early age, as far back as I can remember, that I was supposed to be female. It wasn’t the colors, or the clothes, or some desire to play with dolls. Everything in my brain was insisting my body was supposed to be female, and this only got stronger as I grew up. It reached a new level of intensity as puberty hit. I certainly didn’t fit in with the boys as a teenager. I was utterly appalled by their discussions of what they’d like to do to the girls, and the precise reasons why that only applied to some girls. They’d harass the ones they didn’t find attractive. That’s one of the unique things transsexual women get to experience before they transition – hearing what boys and men say when they’re certain no women are around. It’s so previlent that I don’t consider “#NotAllMen” to have any validity at all what so ever. When they think there are no women around, they indeed discuss what they would do with or without a woman’s consent, what they would make her do. In addition, people insisted I was gay. I have been called faggot in various forms more times than I’d ever want to remember.
For quite a few years, I didn’t have access to transition. It was an extremely dark time in my life, and although things improved as I gained access to hormone replacement therapy, it continued to get darker as time passed without being able to finish my transition. I had several suicide attempts. When I wasn’t attempting to take my own life, I retreated in to an online role play game where I didn’t need to acknowledge my reality. I could exist as someone else in a virtual space. No one knew what I was behind that screen. I didn’t experience happiness during this time. I wasn’t living, I was merely existing, and just barely surviving. I woke up, I went to work where I pretended I didn’t want to slit my wrists right there on the workbench, went home resisting the urge to take my car in to a utility pole at full throttle, went back to my virtual world, and finally went to bed only to repeat the process again the next day. It affected my work performance. It destroyed my friendships. Those who cared basically watched me at all hours to ensure I’d still be alive for another day.
Finally, the approval and coverage for my surgery came. It was finally happening. It was an excruciating procedure, and recovery was long and agonizing. I had thought the day might never come, but It was done now.
I am not going to say Sex Reassignment Surgery is some magic bullet that solved all my life’s problems. I still had financial troubles to deal with. I still had other mental health concerns to work through. The difference, however, is now I wasn’t trying to deal with these other issues while under the crushing weight of sex dysphoria. I was finally able to find out who I am. It turns out I’m a very caring person, I really enjoy tea and jazz, and I have an interest in device modification! I’ve been able to make excellent progress on my PTSD. I live in a much better area than I used to live in. I have a social life I’m comfortable with. I finally have a life. Suicide isn’t anywhere in my thoughts. Transition saved my life, and anyone who claims transition only causes harm is demonstrably wrong and I doubt the vast majority of them are arguing in good faith. Transition certainly can cause harm, but to claim it only causes harm is ignorant at best. I literally wouldn’t be alive to write this had my transition not been completed, and the delay nearly cost me my life.
Transition is live-saving care for those who need it.