When you stop feeling Transgender
I’m not sure exactly when it happened. When did I stop feeling transgender? When did I stop even thinking about it? At some point in the last couple of years my awareness of being transgender has given way to simply feeling female.
That may not seem like a very big deal, but it actually is. Imagine spending your entire life with a constant awareness of being transgender and then one day realizing that it was gone. So, what happened? What, after 55 years of stressing over being transgender almost constantly changed so that I rarely think of it?
I can point to a couple of possible causes. The first and most possible reason is my bottom surgery. I had gender reassignment surgery about 18 months ago. Even though I had socially transitioned more than six years earlier, having bottom surgery definitely made a big difference in the way I felt. To start with, I no longer had to worry about anyone noticing the maleness between my legs. That in itself made a huge difference. No longer did I have to take extra care while changing in the locker room or bathroom.
Perhaps a less quantifiable result of bottom surgery is how my behavior has changed because of the reduction in my testosterone levels. I can’t realistically measure if it has changed anything but it seems reasonable that having the level of a very powerful hormone in your system drop to zero would do something. I’ve definitely noticed some physical changes. I’ve lost more muscle mass and overall weight since my surgery. I seem less physically robust and energetic. I hate to say weaker, but I do feel less of the power that I associate with feeling male.
A more quantifiable reason that I think less about being transgender is the way I’m treated, especially by my boyfriend. He never mentions it at all and treats me in every way like a cisgender woman. We’ve been together for almost a year now and I think the way he treats me has made a difference. It’s not that I’m ever clocked as Trans in public. That hasn’t happened since I socially transitioned. But it means a lot when my formerly straight boyfriend treats me as another female partner. To say it’s validating is an over simplification. Our relationship makes me feel whole in a way I didn’t realize I cared about.
It’s hard to say what exactly has caused me to forget about being transgender. It could simply be time spent living as a woman has allowed me to feel more comfortable. I’m sure that’s a factor. I do think bottom surgery and lower testosterone levels have also helped. But the most important cause is probably having my intimate partner forget too.