Tag Archives: transition

“Man Core”

During my life, I’ve met all sorts of people. When I identified as a woman, and as a lesbian, I met women who were hardcore man haters. There were always reasons why they hated men, such as male privilege, gender discrimination in the workplace, and the list goes on. Even while I identified as a woman, I was not one of those women who hated men. I had an ex-girlfriend who used to torment me about being bisexual as opposed to lesbian because of my defense of men. Little did she know that it was because I AM a man. Even I didn’t realize that at the time, but looking back, it makes more sense why I was so highly offended.

Recently, I went to the park with an ex-girlfriend to walk dogs. I asked her to take a picture of me with my dog, Kali Ma, so that I could add something new to my Twitter/Facebook accounts. She took several pictures and stopped for a moment and stared at me. I asked her what was wrong and she said, ‘you look just like a dude’.

Mind you, I wasn’t dressed any differently than I normally am. There wasn’t anything about my physical appearance that was different. I brought this up to her and she mentioned that it wasn’t so much my physical appearance but the energy I projected. She referred to me having a “man core”.

At first, I was exhilarated by the fact that she noticed this “man core”. I’d certainly never considered it as I spend more time obsessing over the reasons that keep me from passing successfully as a man. It was a short-lived moment of progress, but then I realized that she was utterly disgusted by me. That hurt. This woman who had once loved me was now plainly disturbed by the energy I projected, although I took that to also include my physical appearance. I was heartbroken in an instant — not because I felt guilty or that something was somehow “wrong” with me, but because of her instant rejection and blatant hatred of my “man core”.

My “man core”, as she referred to it, is my essence. It’s my true self. It’s the part of me I had repressed all of my life. The part of me that I have now come to accept and love. The part of me that is now shining through me. ME.

Ever since this encounter, I’ve played the scenario over and over in my head and even with my therapist. I am still the same person I’ve always been, minus pretending to be female and lesbian, which, in my defense, was a process I had to go through to get to where I am now.

I played the “straight” game for years. It’s what was expected of me. I was supposed to meet a nice man, settle down and make babies. I did meet a nice man. I married him too, but then I realized quickly what a huge mistake I’d made. It wasn’t his fault, and honestly, I don’t blame myself either because I had to go through that to make it to the next “level”, so to speak.

That next level was my imagining that since I was attracted to women and wanted to be with women that I must be a lesbian. I was so relieved in the beginning. I could be with women, which made me very happy, although my family and some friends were obviously appalled. I felt free for a bit, but then, I began to take note of my discomfort in the bedroom. Mind you, I had absolutely no problem pleasing women, but when I realized they wanted to please me sexually too, this became a bit of a struggle. I had such body hangups that I’d never realized before. I couldn’t relax and at times I preferred not to even be touched. Something about it just wasn’t what it was supposed to be, and I was naive enough to believe that it would be ok, that there would be no questions and that women, like men, would be overjoyed at being ravaged without having to return the favors. I was so wrong!

Looking back now, it’s crazy to think that it took me so long to put all the pieces together and realize that my discomfort with my body is because I am in the wrong body! It isn’t because I have a mental disorder or am a control freak in the bedroom, it just simply comes down to body dysmorphia. It amazes me how repressed, subconscious thoughts/memories can affect your life. Now that I have embraced myself as who I am, a man, I am learning new ways to work past body and self-esteem issues.

All of this brings me to thoughts on physical transition. In my continued research of the FTM community, I find what sometimes seems an unspoken “rule” that if you are a transman that you will take hormones and have your breasts removed. Although I’m not happy with my body and I will probably be working on body image issues for the rest of my life, that does not mean that I am ready to go under the knife. If I’ve learned anything in my search, it’s that I don’t have to transition physically at all. In my mind, I’m male. It’s my “man core” that is the primary source of my being, and with or without hormone therapy and/or surgery, I always have been, and always will be male.


Therapy

I made my first therapy appointment today for March 31 at 10am. I’ll see a counselor that a friend recommended who deals with gender variations. I hope she’s ready because I have a lot to work on!

 


Binding Blues II

As you’ll recall from my previous post, Binding Blues, I was having difficulty finding the right kind of binder. My first binder order was for a men’s gynecomastia vest. It could have been the size, or the way it was made, but either way, it ended up giving me more of a boost than binding…eek!

The second part of my search was an order for Underworks mens microfiber compression tank. I finally received the product in the mail and was pleased by the quality. It was much nicer in every way at $26 than the $60 garment I will now refer to as the “P.o.S.” (no offense to the  manufacturer, but the quality was hideous!)

While the Underworks product was much nicer, it did not work either. The size was all wrong. A 2X was more like a large. I could barely get it over my head much less determine whether I was going to be able to tolerate it before the beginnings of a panic attack started coming on.

Sadly, the Underworks product also gets a thumbs down from me. Let me state though, that there was nothing wrong with the product aside from the size. If all 2X’s were that size, I wouldn’t feel so bad about being a big guy!

Here’s some things I would recommend to any manufacturer of garments made for big guys.

  1. Make sure the size on the label is the actual size of the garment.
  2. Make sure there is ample arm space! Big guys have big arms! No need to cut off our circulation or have the material rub our skin raw! Geesh!
  3. I recommend that you actually meet and speak to big guys before marketing to them. Find out what their needs are and what works best for their bodies. Remember, comfort is of utmost importance!
  4. Less is better. Unless I need an entire tank top, or even straps, there’s no need to create them for binders. I don’t want to have to hide my binder under layers of clothing, nor do I want to have too much material that will make me hot. Big guys sweat! Work with us already!

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m willing to pay money for a good product. I feel extremely cheated when I pay for something and it isn’t anywhere near what was promised. Then again, this was also a lesson to me not to purchase from Amazon vendors who have no-return policies 😦

I was fortunate enough to have someone introduce me to Love Boat today. There are sizes that go up to 6XL! And by the sizing guide, they would actually have my size! I’m uber excited and planning to order binder #3 from them with the hopes that I will find a product that I am satisfied with.