Many transgender women and men resent their restrictive upbringing not living as their authentic selves. I prefer to think of it as far as I am concerned as the days of cross dressing as a guy. Even though for the most part I was successful, all too often, the whole effort was so very stressful. The entire time I had to hide my resentment. Back in those days (the 50’s and 60’s) there was simply no one to reach out to.
These days of course are different except for the fact some of the young transgender population don’t understand how a seemingly increase in older trans women and men coming out somehow is bogus. They don’t realize how difficult it was to come out in the “dark ages” of being transgender.
Then there is the
effect of testosterone poisoning. The infamous result of puberty often is too much for many of us to overcome. No matter how any hormones you take, there is nothing you can do about your size or bone structure. On the positive side, many of us learn to dress ourselves to still accentuate the positive and survive the feminine world.
One idea to look back on your male history is to look at what he did do for you. For some of us, he kept us safe from the bullies. He acted the hated macho role well and did enough to get by. He was able to somehow internalize the confusing feminine feelings. He didn’t want to be a defensive end on the football team. He wanted to be a cheerleader.
For better or for worse, my history is one of survival. I went to proms and dated when I had to all the way to getting married and having a daughter. I even was forced into the military through the Vietnam draft so I could add it to my “male resume”‘
Being a historian myself, I have embraced the positive aspects of being forced to live a period of my life in a foreign gender. Through it all, I learned what it is to live both sides of the gender fence.
History now tells me it is as difficult as it sounds.