Sunday, 21 November 2010

A couple of weeks of thought....

Sorry it’s been a while – it’s been an interesting few weeks.  Both in the good and the bad sense…

Now where to start?  Always a problem isn’t it?  Do you start with the good news, and then lead into the less good (I won’t say bad news, because though it’s not been fun I can’t say it’s bad…  Sorry I’m rambling now).

The past week or so has been extremely busy – I’ve barely had a chance to catch up on blogs let alone write any.  I’m writing this drinking Latte at a very good Italian Coffee shop in Schiphol airport waiting for my train connection.  (If any of you ever go through Schiphol I can recommend Pronto – just across from Starbucks and so much better!)

Right, the less good; I’ll start with that and finish on a good note.  Much better.  You may notice that this post doesn’t have a lot of structure – I apologise for that.

Two weeks ago I had a therapy session.  It was also Mrs Stace’s birthday and so I just went direct from work, without getting changed first – I kind of assumed that on her birthday she would prefer her husband to come home, and couldn’t possibly deny her that.  But that’s another tangent and not really important to the tale.  I was a good session, we discussed many things – I won’t bore you with the details.  Towards the end the therapist brought up the subject of making ‘the decision’ (my quotes) and that it’s not so much a decision that you make, it’s something that you know.  I told him that I thought I knew what my path was, and that that wasn’t my problem.  That confused him – I have to stop being so English.  So I clarified.  I *do* knew what my path is, and that isn’t my problem.  My problem is to do with cost, not money but Mrs Stace.  He again repeated not to worry and that will come to my in time.

That triggered two of possibly my worst weeks since I started blogging – and a very bi polar feeling.  Whilst I had something on my mind there was no problem.  Then I got 5 minutes to myself, or I got distracted at work and – boom! – I was back in melancholy mode again.  I’ve laid in bed at night trying to grapple it – I don’t actually know if I’ve had insomnia (though I’ve been waking far too early) but it seemed like I was lying awake for half the night.  Last Sunday I spent the whole evening on the verge of tears.

You see my problem that I just don’t see how you are supposed to come to any conclusion there at all.  I have two choices – both are fantastic and both fill me with dread.

1) I can go for transition
I don’t spend the rest of my life in Girl Envy, I don’t spend the rest of my life suffering what I am suffering at the moment, and hopefully get rid of the thoughts of ending it all (don’t worry I’m not seriously considering it – but I still think it’s not healthy to try and work out the best way to do it)

I stand the very real possibility of losing the love of my life.  The person who I have such an amazing connection that we don’t just finish each other’s sentences, we start them as well.  I have a crappy day, see her and suddenly everything seems that much better.  Just writing that sentence lifts me.  Christ, she cares that much about me that *she* made me go to the doctors last year when I told her everything as she could see what it was doing to me, even though she knew where it may lead.

2) I don’t transition
Reverse the above.  And add to it that I spend the rest of my life growing more and more bitter at my body and the way that it shall keep getting more bloke like as the years go by, and hate myself more and more.

But the chances are that I keep Mrs Stace in my life.  Chances are – nothing is certain of course.

So there we have it.  Do I spend the rest of my life slowly hating me for my body and how I have to live my life, or do I risk spending the rest of my life hating that I killed the best relationship I am ever likely to have.

That sentence is the one that has been causing me so much pain and confusion over the last couple of weeks.

Thursday I went back to therapy and brought this up.  His take on it…  Nothing is certain no matter which direction you go for.  Also…  No matter what direction I eventually go for don’t expect to do it without Stacy.  She’s here for good – if I try to put her back into the box and ignore her I am not going to be healthy, and the chances are that that will ruin the relationship.  I kind of guessed that one.

So it will become obvious what I have to do.  Apparently it’s already obvious to those in the know.  When we were discussing something last week I asked Mrs Stace if she had given up on male me.  She said that everyone has given up on male me, and threw the question back.  I said no I hadn’t yet.  I wonder if I am trying to convince myself of that, or if it’s the truth?

I told her that I knew where I should be, but wasn’t sure about the cost – but didn’t go into details.  I didn’t think she needed the pressure when making her own decisions.  My therapist convinced me that wasn’t the right route – that I should show her how much she means to me, just make sure that it’s not said in a pressuring way.  I tried last night and almost succeeded in keeping it free of pressure, we discussed it for too long and in too much depth – but she did say that she was glad I told her.

Anyway that was the not so great.  It’s still going around my head – and I still have no idea what I am going to do.  But the fact that I have discussed it, and that Mrs Stace knows everything that is going on in my head now has taken the edge off a little.

So that is the reason why I’ve been a little quiet.  I’ve needed to write this post, but not known how to do it.    It may be lacking in structure, but pouring my thoughts out seems to have been the only way to do it.  It wouldn’t feel right if I tried to edit it into something coherent.

Anyway – it hasn’t all been bad.  I’ve had a couple of good weeks in the office – it’s been busy in a good way; enough to do, and with lots of thinking involved – not just mindless tasks.  I spent time testing a new monitor (we have been complaining about our monitors for years as they are too cheap and nasty to use for coding.  And the next day 30 22” high resolution monitors were delivered.  I was amazed at the speed that it suddenly happened – no budget for months then on Monday I was asked for input into a monitor, Tuesday I tested and Wednesday we had new ones.  And we have a room full of happier developers.

And finally to close it off…  I’ve spent the last two mornings (I started this on Friday morning and am finishing it now on the Sunday morning) with a bit of a hangover.  We went for a night out as a team after work on Friday – shooting some pool followed by a nice meal.  It was a great night out – the only problem was that I didn’t get much sleep and did drink a glass of wine too much.  Then yesterday we went to see a friend of ours.  Who has exactly my taste in wine (the very nice white that we took with us just happened to be the same that she had cooling in the fridge for drinking with dinner, and the one she had open was one of my favourites that I’m slowly running out of as our supplier can’t get any more.  We sat and chatted for the evening, it was a lot of fun – but we managed to work our way through a bottle each, and I was still recovering from the day before.

This afternoon we say goodbye to some family – Mrs Stace’s cousin is visiting from Australia (her family moved out there years ago).  We are having a last get together at her parents place before they leave in the morning.   Should be a good afternoon, I just hope that I can make it without being pressured into having a drink :)a


  1. *hugs* Thank you for sharing everything so honestly. Your blog is one of the resources I used for helping figure myself out, and I'm eternally indebted.

  2. You didn't ramble too much. :)

    And I can understand how difficult this is. It's true, however, that we can't be sure of what lies ahead of us. If you try to hold onto the present, it slips away. I quite understand the fear of losing the love of your life. But you have to do right by yourself, whatever that is. Otherwise, you're not the partner you should be.

    It's a dilemma to be sure. I hope you can find certainty.


  3. Its a tough one. I struggled with the same thing for a long time as you know.
    In the end only you know whats right for you and I am sure when the time is right and you have processed all your feelings you will make the right decision.
    I know many have lost there partners and I also know several that have kept them.
    Then there are those like me who are like best friends with my wife but have split.
    Its impossible to say exactly how things will turn out but I do think from what you write you are thinking correctly and considering your path in the right way.

  4. It isn't easy, to state a very obvious fact. :-) I think.... I think you have to do what you think is right. If you stay as you are, will you drive Mrs Stace away through the bitterness you mentioned. You have neither then. Could it be that if you did transisition, would you remain friends? I know of couples who divorced, but remainded good friends.

  5. This is a very familiar internal conversation, one with no "right" answer. But it's important to remember that also means it has no "wrong" answer. Mrs. Stace is very much worth any effort and I am sure you are for her too, whether as Stace or as bloke.
    One of the things that keeps me on my path is the thought that if I end up with no alternatives left but to take the path to transition then at least I won't be accused of not having tried.

  6. Melanie: I'm pleased that my sharing can help others - it takes time to figure out where you need to go to (34 years and countng for me, 6 months of those in therapy) but hopefully it's worth it when you finally get there. But please don't think that I know what I am doing... I'm just tring the best that I can - but it is just the way that fits my circumstances.

    Ariel: Thanks :) I'm sure that certainty will come in time - or at least as close to it as I can get.

    Lisa Maria: I'm fairly sure that should we split it will be amicable.

    We have our discussions (as you can imagine) but they are much less fraught than they could be.

    Lynn: To quote Bart "damned if you do and damned if you don't" It could be that I transition and we survive as a couple, or it could be I don't and as you say we rip our relationship apart. Or vice versa. If only we could see the future...

    Jenny: Very nicely put. Thanks.


  7. Stace, as you know I very much relate to this post. I am older than you and continue to survive. I live a very good life with a fantastic career and I do it with the love of my life. I also do it with GID that gets worse and worse as years go by. I deal with it but sometimes it requires assistance from close friends to keep me together.

    My wife sounds much like yours. I think she would stay if I transitioned but I just don't want to risk it. She married a male and I got myself into this so I keep working on ways to deal with it.

    I don't go to a therapist. Never have. I know what a therapist would tell me and I don't want to hear it.

    Life can be very frustrating at times for me, but I maintain.

    Whatever you choose to do, I will support you and will always be your friend.

    Calie xxx

  8. Calie,

    I live a very good life with a fantastic career and I do it with the love of my life

    That sentence pretty much sums up my problem. Which is the wrong word, but you get what I mean...

    The first sentence is one that most people who know about me can't get to be honest, they just assume that life sucks. And it does. In that respect - but it's still a full life in other respects.

    My therapist is very good at not pushing anything - whilst he has said that yes in his view I'm more than probably a candidate for the VU, he has also been very clear that it's something that I have to do and decide myself - all he can do is prepare me for it.

    Thanks for the support and friendship - it really is very much appriciated.