What is Gender Dysphoria?
My gender dysphoria was probably always with me. I first was aware if it very young, for sure; when I was around 5 years old I wrote an innocent note in my school diary, “When I grow up I want to be a boy …”
I assumed that everything would work out fine, and that when puberty hit I would grow my own penis and a few years later a magnificent beard. When puberty finally came, there was no dick and balls for me, instead I started to grow breasts; I was honestly surprised and utterly horrified. It wasn’t supposed to be like this !
I continued to dress as I always had, jeans and t-shirt, but now family and societal pressure increased. As I grew older, well meaning folks would impose gender stereotyping on me, suggesting a wore a skirt, or I should grow my hair to be more attractive to guys ! This was a long time ago …
I knew that my breasts and genitals didn’t fit who I was, but I didn’t know that I could make a change. Then I suppressed my desire to be a guy, and got on with life, numbing those parts of me I couldn’t accept. I used alcohol from the age of 10, and when I turned 18 and was at University, it ramped up and stayed that way until my early-thirties, when I became pregnant and almost instantly stopped.
Fast forward through a painful divorce, into my second marriage, this time with a lovely woman. My problems and drinking are still with at this time, and then I have a dream. I dream I am a man, I have a gorgeous beard, I’m dressed well, and in a group of people, smart, witty and entertaining; I felt wonderful ! It was this dream and the feelings I got from it that led to my consciously accepting my desire to be a man, through supportive therapy I bought a binder and put it on when no-one was home … I felt so at home looking at myself in the mirror with a flat chest ! It was in that moment that I knew that this was ME, that I needed to transition.