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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Gender Issues » I hate pretty much every biological aspect of being female.

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Author Topic: I hate pretty much every biological aspect of being female.
libertatissacra
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Ever since I learned about gender dysphoria and started thinking that I may be at least slightly gender dysphoric, I've been trying to learn more about it. Research via internet, books, forums, and talking to any trans-identified people who are willing to talk to me about their feelings and experiences with their gender issues. And I'm starting to realise...I'm not sure what I'm feeling is really stereotypical as far as gender identity issues go.

Socially, I kind of like being a girl. I honestly think it's easier. My senior year of high school, I wore a suit and tie to homecoming and a dress to prom (both by choice; despite not loving being female, I do have a feminine side that enjoys pretty dresses), which I probably couldn't have gotten away with if I had similar gender issues but was biologically male. Sure, I got a few funny looks at homecoming, but nothing beyond that, and most of my friends thought it was really cool and told me I looked really good. Granted, I went to a pretty liberal-minded high school in a pretty liberal town, but if I'd been male and shown up to either of those dances in a dress, it likely wouldn't have been received so well. "Cross-dressing," when you're female, isn't so much considered cross-dressing anymore by many people. Sometimes I even wear a tie to work, and nobody bats an eyelash. I've performed in piano recitals in slacks and a blazer, and nobody seems to find it off-colour.

So, since emotionally I don't really identify with either gender and often like the way I dress to reflect that, being biologically female suits my purposes. Not only can I get away with it with minimal raised eyebrows, but most people don't even connect it with anything regarding gender identity at all, which is kind of nice.

Again, I realise that a lot of this could have to do with the fact that I've spent most of my life is fairly liberal-minded places, but even still, let's face it: a woman in a suit turns a lot less heads and gets a lot less rocks thrown than a man in a dress in most places.

Also, I do have to say that I enjoy wearing low-cut shirts, and the male (and sometimes female) attention it gets me (my breasts is the only biological part of being female that I enjoy; I admit to having a nice pair of boobs XD). I know some people are bothered by cat-calls or people trying to get a look down their shirt, but I'm a flirt and enjoy people finding me attractive, so I just think it's good fun.

But all that aside...I really, really hate my genitals. I hate dripping blood and uterine tissue out of my vagina once a month. I think it's disgusting. I wasn't raised to think it's disgusting. I was raised to think it was just a natural part of being female and nothing to be ashamed of or grossed out by. I've never even had a sexual partner who was grossed out by it. In fact, all my sexual partners have been a lot less grossed out by it than I have. So I've kind of ruled out being too deeply influenced by environment. I'm thinking more and more that this loathing of my menstrual cycle is completely internal.

I also hate that I can pregnant. I'm disgusted by pregnancy. I don't find it beautiful or amazing or any kind of "miracle." I see it as a fate worse than death. It's creepy and gross and I never want to have my own biological children. If I could find a doctor who would sterlise me tomorrow, I'd probably do it.

I hate my genitalia in general, too. It's not that I think it doesn't measure up to other vulvas or anything like that. I just hate that I have it. I look down at it and just think it's ugly and gross. The only purpose it's ever served me has been sexual pleasure, but big whoop. I could get sexual pleasure probably more easily with male genitalia, and wouldn't have to deal with the grossness and disgustingness that my female genitalia seems to breed.

I had a yeast infection a while back and spent most of the seven days of treatment in tears, because this horrible festering hole between my legs that I never even wanted in the first place was causing me so much discomfort, and on top of that, because of that discomfort, the one good thing it's EVER done for me (sexual pleasure) was now a task it couldn't perform.

The thing is, I don't think I really want to transition to become biologically male. As I said earlier, emotionally, I don't really identify with either gender, so I don't really feel that sex reassignment would be right for me, and as far as social interaction goes, I feel that being female as definite advantages. But I just HATE having female genitalia.

So I don't know exactly what I'm asking for. I don't want to be told how great biological female functions are. I've heard it, and while I envy people who can feel that way, I'm not sure I ever will. I guess I just want...advice on how to better deal with these conflicting gender/sex feelings I'm having. It's something that, rather than getting easier as I get older, seem to just be getting harder.

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"America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between."
-Oscar Wilde

Posts: 115 | From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
orca
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(Libertatissacra, I understand that you are not happy with your genetalia, but please refrain from calling it disgusting or a "horrible festering hole" while on this site. Some people on this site are dealing with body image issues and I feel that this language doesn't help.

And you don't have to worry about the people on this site extolling the virtues of one sex's genetalia over another, especially when you've stated that you are unhappy with your current genetalia.)

Have you thought about seeing a trans-friendly therapist to discuss some of these issues? A good therapist will be able to help you figure out why you are feeling this way and find some possible solutions outside of surgery (since you stated that that is not desireable to you at this point).

Or perhaps going to a support group for gender dysphoria? The support group might especially be helpful because you could find out how other people feel about their biological sex and what actions they are taking to help with those feelings.

As for cross-dressing being more socially acceptable for girls rather than guys, I'm afraid you're right, though I wish it was equally acceptable. Remember back in the 90s when it was fashionable for women to wear men's slacks and vests (think Demi Moore in "Ghost")?

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Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.--Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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libertatissacra
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I apologise for my strong language, but honestly, that's often how I view it. And really the only reason that I specified that I didn't want to be told how great vulvas are is that that's generally the response I get when I try to talk to people. They tell me how amazing female bits are, and how they used to think their periods were gross too until they realised how womanly and feminine they are, etc. etc. etc. And I'm happy for people who feel that way. I really am. I wish I could love my bodily functions like those people do. But every time I hear that, or even see/read something along those lines in an unrelated conversation, I tend to just feel ten times worse, because I feel like there is something wrong with my psyche rather than with my body, if all these other people can apparently be totally happy with their femaleness and find beauty in things by which I'm repulsed.

I also get frustrated when people try to tell me that these views come from the social stigma surrounding female anatomy. While I agree that yes, that social stigma is definitely there, it's not something I grew up around. My mother is a feminist lesbian, and my father has never expressed anything but the utmost respect for women and their biology. And I'm definitely fortunate to have been raised in such a female-positive environment, but it just makes it twice as annoying when someone gives me the "influenced by society" lecture.

I'm not really directing any of this at you. I'm still just kind of ranting about the world at large. Sorry.

I've thought about therapy, but I just...have this fear of therapists that I can't quite explain, and it's probably stupid and something that I'll need to get over at some point. It's just...I've always been extremely independent, and one for figuring myself out myself, with perhaps a little help from teachers or friends. I've always seen seeing a therapist as a sign of weakness in myself, which is weird, because I don't perceive other people who see or have seen therapists as weak at all, but at least for myself, I see it as sort of...giving up, I guess. I'm not saying it's rational. I know it isn't. I'm just trying to explain why I'm spilling my emotional problem to the internet rather than already having found a good therapist.

And I've considered seeking out a support group as well (I'm sure I could find one in this city), but I guess what's held me back from that is...well, I have three trans friends. One FtM and two MtF's. And their solution is basically either surgery at some point in the future, or at least living as a member of their gender. Also, their issues seem very different from mine in the sense that, while they certainly have a great dislike for their physical sex, they also identify socially much more strongly with one gender than I do. This has given me the impression, perhaps falsely, that I don't really fit into the gender dysphoric community, since neither of those options are what I really want. I just want to learn how to hate what's between my legs less.

And yes, I think it's very sad that cross-dressing is so much less acceptable for males. My boyfriend is actually in a similar, but slightly less extreme gender boat as me (and let me tell you, I've felt able to be SO MUCH more open about all this since I've been with him, which is great, but unfortunately, still doesn't solve the problem) and he always complains about how he can't feel comfortable wearing skirts out in public. Which is really unfortunate, because he looks so adorable in a plaid skirt and stockings. XD

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"America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between."
-Oscar Wilde

Posts: 115 | From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
orca
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There's nothing wrong with your psyche for not feeling the same way as those other people do about it. That makes it sound like your view on it is wrong, which it isn't, it's individualistic. As for therapy, well, I can't blame you. It's always kind of hard to talk to a therapist about some of these things, especially since they can seem a little intimidating (who wouldn't seem intimidating for $135 an hour?).

I wouldn't jump to the conclusion that you wouldn't fit into the gender dysphoric community just because your three trans friends are only considering those options. Perhaps you could consider starting small, just sitting in on a meeting, listening to the people talk about how they feel about it, then decide if you want to attend meetings regularly or not.

I did find a hotline for the National Youth Advocacy Coalition (which deals with issues of transgender, among other things) if you think that might be an easier starting point. It's toll-free, though they say the lines may be busy frequently but to keep trying if that happens.

National Youth Advocacy Coalition
1-800-541-6922, ext. 12
TTY: (202) 319-9513
Open: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. EST.

I also found the website for TransGender San Francisco if you want to take a look at that. They list activities that the group does, including a meet-and-greet type of deal, which you may want to think about attending just to get a feel of what the community would be like. Maybe you and your boyfriend could go together if you think you would be more comfortable with someone you know.
http://www.tgsf.org/index.html

[ 03-21-2008, 06:19 AM: Message edited by: orca ]

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Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.--Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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September
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Just to add something from my personal experience: If you talked to any of my friends, they'd tell you how much time they had to invest in convincing me to start therapy. Much like you, I'm a very independent person, I pride myself on being strong and having my **** together, and the thought of seeking a therapist felt to me like admitting failure. I ended up going (after calling and re-scheduling several times), pretty much only to get my friends off my back. And - it was an awesome experience. Rather than feeling weak, I felt like I was finally in control and starting to take charge of my life. I was doing the things I needed to do to be a happy, healthy individual. It was very positive for me. I ended up being in therapy for nearly three years and quit only last summer, when I felt that I'd taken therapy as far as I could and wanted to take it from there.

Long story, I know. But I just wanted to say, I get where you're coming from there, but you should still give it a try. Sounds to me like you'd really benefit from some counseling.

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Johanna
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"The question is not who will let me, but who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

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libertatissacra
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I guess it doesn't help that I haven't had great luck with therapists to begin with. I've been to two. One my parents made me see when they were getting divorced, and all she did was tell me how hard my life was right now and how strong I was being, which...really didn't help, especially since one of my problems tends to be being emotionally frigid in the face of crisis because I've always perceived that people expect me to be "the strong one," so that therapist really did the opposite of helping me.

I saw another therapist more recently for just one session regarding some past sexual abuse, and that was a little better, I guess, but it wasn't like some amazing epiphany of awesomeness. I mostly just ranted at him for an hour about how I hate people pitying me. He was cool and all, but I left feeling like I could have saved a lot of money by having the same conversation with my boyfriend or a close friend for free.

Which brings me to another problem with therapy. Money and time. I don't have a lot of either. I work fulltime, and can barely afford my rent and basic living expenses as it is. I know that some places offer free or low-cost counseling for some things, but would gender issues be one of those things?

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"America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between."
-Oscar Wilde

Posts: 115 | From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
orca
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Yep. Gender issues would be one of those things. Here's a list of different therapists specializing in gender issues in San Francisco. One specifically states that they do sliding scale fees, though you can always call up the other places and see if that's a possibility with them too. Keep in mind, though, that it's hard to judge how a therapist is going to work with you based on one session (unless it's an incredibly bad session, which this doesn't sound like it was).

Dr. Barbara Anderson
1537 Franklin St, Ste. 104
San Francisco, CA 94109
Phone : (415) 776-0139

Koen Keri Baum, LMFT
3896 24th St.
San Francisco, CA. 94114
Phone : (415) 646-0565
Email : juicylucyfish@msn.com
Koen is a transman himself, and is a gender specialist as well as a couples therapy and communication expert. Works with both couples and individuals on a variety of issues including: gender identity; Butch/Femme identity, S/M and other expressions of sexuality; transition; transitioning within a couple; and transgender sexuality. Also addresses concerns around problem solving, anger management, spirituality, loss and self-esteem. Has an in-depth awareness around Ethnic and cultural diversity and when working with clients take into consideration how "isms" in its many forms may affect each individual.

Lin Fraser, Ed.D.
2538 California Street
San Francisco, CA 94115
Phone : (415) 922-9240
Email : linfraser@aol.com

Gender & Self Acceptance Program
GSAP
P.O. Box 424447
San Francisco, CA 94142
Phone : (415) 558-8058
A private personal growth-counseling program providing individual, couple, and small group sessions focusing on gender, self & social acceptance, whole-self integration, coming-out, cross-dressing, HIV concerns, and ACA/ Co-dependency issues. Short & long term counseling, small group support and quarterly weekend workshops focusing on gender & acceptance/ integration issues. Sliding scale fee. Serving TSs, TVs, and other minorities. Provide professional counseling & training.

William A. Henkin, Ph.D.
1801 Bush Street, Suite 111
San Francisco, CA. 94109
Phone : (415) 923-1150
Psychotherapist and board certified sex therapist specializing in work with adults living alternative sex and gender lifestyles. Gender identity concerns and transitions, SM/DS/BD, infantilism, sexual orientation included. Individuals, significant others, couples.

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Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.--Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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Stephanie_1
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Remember that with finding a therapist that youíre personally comfortable talking with as well as one who matches well with you can often be a game of hit and miss. It takes time to find a professional that you are comfortable divulging personal information with. Just the same Ö if someone doesnít want to be in counseling at a particular time, the session can be seen as more of a bad than a good thing. Your parents making you see someone before could easily have added bad feelings to the experience if you didnít want to be there.

Itís true also that for some people counseling is an amazing experience, for others while it helps to have someone to talk to the experience isnít a main highlight. If you really want to continue looking for a good therapist/ counselor there are certainly places that offer free or low-cost counseling Ė and gender issues are often an area they are willing to work with people on.

[ 03-21-2008, 04:01 PM: Message edited by: Stephanie_1 ]

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"Sometimes the majority only means that all the fools are on the same side" ~Anon

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libertatissacra
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Thanks very much, both of you.

Looking at that list, I actually know the area of a couple of those places, so maybe I'll start getting in contact with those and see what results it yields.

Again, thanks to both of you.

--------------------
"America is the only country that went from barbarism to decadence without civilization in between."
-Oscar Wilde

Posts: 115 | From: San Francisco, CA | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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