I Need to Understand Why
Transsexual FAQs for Wives and Family
by Laura Amato
Q) What is a Transsexual?
A) A Transsexual (TS) is a person born with the mind and soul of one gender and the body of another gender. This results in Gender Dysphoria Creating extreme distress until the mind and body are one. The are both male to female (MTF) and Female to male (FTM) versions. Joing of mind and body can be accomplished with gender changing Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS) or sometimes called (GRS) for Gender Reassignment Surgery. Many describe it as being born in the wrong body. Transsexualism is not a life style choice. Its is inborn.
Q) When did it start?
A) For most it started at birth. Indeed, many remember their first thoughts were that something was wrong and that they were the opposite gender of what they were percieved to be. Some supress it until much later.
Q) So why wan't the problem dealt with then?
A) Many transsexual children did voice their distress with being brought up in the wrong gender. Usually parents didn't believe them and dismissed it as a phase they would grow out of. They believed that by forcing a boy to be more masculine and a girl to be more feminine that the problem would go away. Usually what it did was force their True feelings into hiding. Almost none are given the help they need.
Q) What is life like for a transsexual child?
Being forced to be something you are not is cruel. Many have trouble in school and in social situations because they do not identify with their peers. It fosters low self esteem, beatings name calling and withdrawal. Most have no friends of the same gender. To Protect themselves many start acting like their peers. Its either that or ostracism. So many pretend to blend into their assigned roles. Its an act that can last a lifetime.
Q) What happens as a transsexual in Puberty?
A) Puberty is pure hell for the transsexual. This is where the serious problems begin. Self mutilation cutting and severe self abuse start to be an almost daily ritual. Then the real life horror begins as their bodies mature with the wrong secondary sexual charcteristics. Imagine how an MTF feels as her body grows hair and muscle mass. Normal erections become both confusing and terrifying. Imagine an FTM who starts his period and is revisted every 28 days. Imagine growing breasts instead of muscle. Most parents have no idea that their TS children live a nightmare daily. Transsexual teens go through this alone. Some become dangerously suicidal.
Even at this stage teens rarely tell their parents because they view their parents as homophobic. Parents give off many hints about how they feel about the gay community. If they would not accept a son as gay would they accept him as a Transsexual? Schools give off more signals as gays are battered daily. Many also know that their peers would never accept them as TS. The only option is to stay in the closet where its emotionally dangerous and physically safe.
Q) Is there sex involved.
A) Being Transsexual is about Gender not about Sex. Sexual Orientation settles down after the mind and body are one.
Q) What can be done. The first step is to obtain a Gender Therapist Immeadiatly. After a period of time opposite sex hormones may be recommended and eventually after two years of cross-living surgery may be performed. Cross-living is also referred to as (RLT) or the Real Life Test.
Q) We're very close. Why didn't he tell me before we were married?
A) In some Transsexuals many have either supressed it or kept it at bay with sheer will power. Some hope that the right partner will make a difference. Eventually though it breaks free. Many have described it as a spiritual awakening and others as an out of body experience. Once this happens the path for the TS becomes clear and they will not be deterred.
Transsexualism is a severe test for a marraige. While some survive most do not.
Q) What happens if a Transsexual does not have surgery?
A) Suicide is a grim possibility. Almost every transsexual can report having had suicidal thoughts or attempts at some point in their lives.
Q) Is he/she Gay?
A) Its difficult to say before hormones and surgery. The mind and body are not one yet. Most transsexuals are not interseted in gay sex. After surgery many will be hetrosexual in their new gender while others will not change their orientation.
Q) Can I make him stop being Transsexual?
A) No! This is a lifetime event.
Q) So what can I do?