Author Topic: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards  (Read 402 times)

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Offline zirconia

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I woke up much much too early last morning, and browsed through a few forums.

Cookie cutter replies trouble me. This time there were a few questions that revolved around sexuality. The standard response to those appears to be an instant

"Sexual orientation is an innate trait completely separate from gender!!!"

Followed by something like:

"The point of transitioning is to just become what you are!!!"


Hmmm... OK.

But why do the responders then usually go on to:

- Gently or not so gently criticise the original poster for even asking such questions.
- Expound trans theory... rainbows, spectrums and such...
- And describe and justify their own orientation...


Yes.

There are variations in sexual orientation. At least two, I guess.
But... like "gender," I think it logical for it to in general be at least loosely correlated to...

What?

And why get so defensive?


And... if sexual orientation is innate then why do so many happy new lesbians not happily separate to accommodate their quite non-lesbian spouses, and instead try to convert them to lesbianism?

Offline Dena

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2020, 05:16:17 PM »
Normally with a post like this, my reply would be something I heard about 6 or 7 years ago.
Gender identity is who you go to bed as.
Sexual preference is who you go to bed with.

You have gone a step farther in your questioning that people normally do so I need to expand on it. We know with gender identity it's possible to suppress your true self. The proof of this is late transitions who for years live with their birth gender before making the decision to transition.

Sexual preference is a bit more difficult. People are bisexual and some guess suggest that a third of the population could be bisexual. Even if a person isn't bisexual, it still possible to suppress their natural desire only to deal with it latter in life.

As for couples, I have seen it go both ways. In some of the couples, the original wife is either bisexual or lesbian so the marriage remains together and possibly stronger than before. Other times, the original wife is unable to deal with it and the marriage ends or they agree to remain together as roommates.

Interestingly though, most of the time it's different for FTMs and the relationship is more likely to break up because the original husband is unable to deal with the change.

There is no simple rule that applies to this and each case needs to be evaluated by the couple to determine what is the best outcome for both of then.
Email contact through dena@transhaven.org

Offline Maddie

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2020, 05:45:59 PM »
Zirconia, I get where you're coming from here. And the other place.

 I think gender and orientation are connected in my case.  But I'm only getting a little bit at a time.  So I don't totally know yet   I think if I was strongly gay I would have had relationships like that.  I could have but I didn't.
Being heterosexual seems natural to me, yet my early experiences with females made me ill.  I had to adapt a mind trick to exist in the hetero style I was immersed in socially and comfortable with.

People in my formative years who actually  knew and accepted non passing mtf transexuals expressed disapproval towards them if they wanted to be with women.  This is counter to the "rainbow" stance you described in your post.  It is part of my core beliefs that I am now viewing as unessential to moving forward, accepting myself and others.

When I finally broke down and made this life decision, I went from hetero to asexual (I think that's right).  But the past year of hormones, and seeing myself look and act a little more feminine, is slowly breaking down my guards. I have a sense and hope that there is a trove of living energy, mostly locked away, that will continue to reveal itself and flow if I stay this course. 

I'm smiling now.

A possible reason for clinging to beliefs, especially the "new lesbian wants their spouse to turn lesbian" thing could be that they're desperately hanging onto security.  Perhaps even pledging lesbianism (is it a word?) to demonstrate their loyalty to their wedding vows.  Like "I need to be a woman, but I promised I'd never leave you...my love for you is and was real...so don't leave me...we can still be together like this...I don't want to die another day of this life..."
I'm rooting for any couple willing to take this on.

If one has been primarily in sexual relationships with woman it might be logical to think that things would stay that way.  Thus some of the arguments for separation of gender and sexual orientation..?
But what happens when things get further along?  How many times can the script be revised before it burns up?

Changes change things.
Head up moving forward

Offline Kiera

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2020, 06:08:18 PM »
Changes change things.

Three simultaneous posts! I concur with Maddie's conclusion/shorter answer follows:

in general be at least loosely correlated to...

What?
lol ok I'll bite . . "learned behavior" (not or "innate" due hormones only?) based on experience and, to a lesser degree, gender expectations? Mentioned earlier how in HS was convinced "liked girls not gay" . . until a certain boy initiated sexual advances of his own?

Quote
And... if sexual orientation is innate then why . .  try to convert them to lesbianism?
      Because, on a very basic level, the trans-identified person obviously feels, attraction wise, that nothing has really changed? My beef with the "lesbian adopting" cry of losing an otherwise "beloved female spouse" is, in practice, what can the "new woman" do that "the original man" could not?

      In other words if "good lesbian sex" pre-transition perhaps chances of keeping her "after" would have been much greater too? But, I suspect, THAT is not usually the case. I fail to see how anyone can simply declare "i'm a lezzy" without any real experience of lesbianism at all?
Interestingly though, most of the time it's different for FTMs . .
      Could that be because the whole basis of "attraction" between men and women is different in the first place? People talk about "loving the person" (not the sex) but I submit that's more a female trait dependant on how they make her feel whereas men tend to place more value on strictly "visual appearance", seeking out more tender/emotional qualities he obviously might not find in himself?

      Opposites attract; one desires and, the other, an object. As much as I've learned to enjoy the advances of men never really understood the "gay" thing because the type attraction was not reciprocal; one could say my "heterosexuality" is based on the gender that is most naturally attracted to mine?  Which in turn is "fluid", adaptive but, ultimately, would still not make me "bi". While always enjoyed the attention of younger girls as a male the initiating sexual impulse was just not there whereas, with men of course, prefer being the pursued object of desire is preferable instead.

Is it a "target-location-error" only if a woman seeks beauty elsewhere, or not at all, rather than cultivate it within herself?
(my chief objection to "older woman" is attitude and not working
at that which was otherwise given naturally, something us
transgirls don't 'ave the luxury of neglecting)
« Last Edit: June 25, 2020, 07:23:24 AM by Kiera »

Offline zirconia

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2020, 06:07:06 AM »
Thank you, Dena

Gender identity...

I've thought about that many times since I was sent to evaluation. Most of the "identity options" in the questionnaires felt foreign. Some even amusing.

I chose "woman" because in that situation nothing else made sense. I did need to be a woman. Which is why I needed help. But... I had a male body. That's what defined my sex. Thus I was a boy. A youth. A man. Each more horrible than the previous. That was physical reality.

As for identity... I was just me. I very much needed to be a woman. But physical reality stated I wasn't.

I went to ask for help because I was not a woman regardless of what others saw. And I needed a way out of the twilight zone. I needed to be fixed.

Later, with help, I realized I'd been standing right next to the exit all along. And that surgery can fix what is physically  wrong.

But I still go to bed as the same me. Only a lot happier. LOL

As for the rest... yes. Some like men. Some women. Some both, I guess, but I'm pretty sure they also have a preference. And sure, there are wives who accept their transitioned husbands. Although many other transitioners seem to try to hold on forever before finally giving up.

My real question was why are questions pertaining to the subject generally met so defensively? And even hostilely?

After all, what is just is... there's no need to justify what is natural, so the defensiveness to me would seem to indicate some sort of conflict.


Maddie,

I'm very glad you're smiling... (╹◡╹)♡

You may well be right about why some transitioners wish to stay with their wives.

And yes... changes do change things.


Kiera,

lol ok I'll bite . . "learned behavior" (not innate) based on experience and, to a lesser degree, gender expectations?

Interesting... but might not hormones also have something to do with it? If one has the natural propensity, that is?

I fail to see how anyone can simply declare "i'm a lezzy" without any real experience of lesbianism at all?

LOL... Yes.
Might that not be equally true of other things as well?

Edit: clarity
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 03:20:37 AM by zirconia »

Offline Kiera

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2020, 08:06:19 AM »
My real question was why are questions pertaining to the subject generally met so defensively? And even hostilely?

      Quick, off the cuff speculation: because Blanchard is right? As "failed, male betas" they're in love with the IDEA of being "a woman" without any of the experiences or real sense of what that actually entails? In the "Early History of the Concept of Autogynephilia" (2005), which I haven't yet finished reading myself, Blanchard describes in narrative #11:

"The person I was looking for in a woman turned out to really
be me. I never found that person, except in myself"

which, contrary to APA's definition of "dissatisfaction with assigned gender role", suggests -> a intense dissatisfaction with the other gender role at large instead? Havelock Ellis (1928), in describing "Eonism", took "sexo-aesthetic inversion" one step further when concluding:

" . . embodying, in an extreme degree, the aesthetic attribute of imitation
of, and identification with, the admired object. It is normal for a man
to identify himself with the woman he loves. The Eonist
carries that identification too far."

idk just more java for thought . . When it comes to "trans" one cannot make generalizations about anything as long as there's resistance to any and all classification, or the buzzword being "diversity".
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 02:27:57 AM by Kiera »

Offline Complete

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2020, 12:52:52 PM »
I managed to delete my previous, rather lengthy response so here is the short version.
Once my body, (genitalia), had been surgically altered to conform with my brain/mind/soul/self-image....
My sexual attraction, (sexual target), accommodated itself quite comfortably to my current natural state.
I really, really like men. 😀😀😀😃😄

Offline Dena

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2020, 04:44:56 PM »
My real question was why are questions pertaining to the subject generally met so defensively? And even hostilely?
I can think of two reasons and they are opposite sides of the coin.

One day in group therapy our advisor  MTF was talking to some of the other member about the evils of smoking. Her attitude was so harsh that I asked myself why did she feel that way about it. The answer came to me fairly quickly so I said "you were a smoker, weren't you? I received no reply to my remark which I take as a verification that I was correct.

Quitting smoking is very difficult and do do so, a person has to find strong reason to do so. The reason is different from person to person but the reason is important to the person who successfully quits. They will reject other ideas because they cause doubt about their goals and doubt has the risk of failure. They know sticking to their own narrow view works so they reject different ideas because of the risk involved.

The other side of the coin is somebody so convinced that their idea is right. They are sure anything that disagrees with their view is wrong and will not look beyond their view point.

The proper way of handling ideas is the way you do it. You examine each idea to see if it's true or false. The false ones are discarded and the new ones are are incorporated into what you already know. It can be difficult because you might discover something you believed for a long time is wrong. It's something many people don't like to do because it takes them out of their comfort zone.
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Offline zirconia

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2020, 06:28:51 PM »
Could that be because the whole basis of "attraction" between men and women is different in the first place? People talk about "loving the person" (not the sex) but I submit that's more a female trait dependant on how they make her feel whereas men tend to place more value on strictly "visual appearance", seeking out more tender/emotional qualities he obviously might not find in himself?

That sounds interesting... although I really can't grasp it right now. Isn't the other party's sex usually a given? It's only when transitioning comes to play that it becomes an issue. All I can say for sure is that for me the maleness of those to whom I'm attracted is probably the first thing that draws me. The security and strength... and the way they look at me and treat me.

Quick, off the cuff speculation: because Blanchard is right? As "failed, male betas" they're in love with the IDEA of being "a woman" without any of the experiences or real sense of what that actually entails?

Similar to instant lesbianism? LOL.

idk just more java for thought . . When it comes to "trans" one cannot make generalizations about anything as long as there's resistance to any and all classification, or the buzzword being "diversity".

Nice... I'm just drinking a final cup before some hard work...
Diversity defined as infinite makes it indefinable, and makes my head explode.
My brain protects itself by interpreting that definition as meaningless—but it still gives me hives.


My sexual attraction, (sexual target), accommodated itself quite comfortably to my current natural state.
I really, really like men. 😀😀😀😃😄

٩( ᐛ )و (๑˃̵ᴗ˂̵)*・゜゚・*:.。..。.:*・'(*゚▽゚*)'・*:.。. .。.:*・゜゚・*


The proper way of handling ideas is the way you do it.

Thank you. That makes me feel warm and fuzzy... ٩(๑❛ᴗ❛๑)۶

Offline Kiera

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2020, 03:30:05 AM »
Isn't the other party's sex usually a given? It's only when transitioning comes to play that it becomes an issue.
       lol A given? Not really, especially according to the "identityists" claims. Isn't "sex & gender totally unrelated"? So can we assume you don't consider yourself "gay or bi" either but, rather, a mainstream heterosexual as well? My therapist always used to propose a question in group that I supposed as "trick" :
"If could choose only one which would be more
important to you, "acceptance" or "passing"?

     Well, I presumed it a trick q because while there's only one form of physically passing, and that implies acceptance but, as it relates to sexuality & orientation, neither is really a given. Obviously some can't muster to get over either bar which leads to the problem of how one would ultimately "fit" into a normal life within society. Redefine what constitutes "normal" and "society"?

    Indeed it seems trans people do face a double-whammy but I was always under the impression my transition was to resolve all those different "standards"? That compromise not only wasn't an option but the point, with all forms of "non-acceptance" to be avoided at all costs?
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 05:49:14 AM by Kiera »

Offline zirconia

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2020, 05:19:38 AM »
       lol A given? Not really, especially according to the "identityists" claims. Isn't "sex & gender totally unrelated"?

Ugh. Once again I don't understand gender. Although extrapolating from Complete's definition of "gendered behavior" I suppose it should be what category other people feel is appropriate for me?

Then yes. I still have a discrepancy. It bothers me less now than in the past because I'm working towards getting that fixed. Except that a certain need I can't fulfill gets stronger by the day.

As for the link... my apologies, but I lost interest where they said

"Transsexuals who are variant in behavior from their biological sex are said to be "expressing their gender identity" and their femininity is said to be a way of showing on the outside behaviorally how they feel on the inside."

That premise is obvious balderdash. "Expressing" is just a word for deliberately showing. And acting has nothing to do with being. Debunking something  that by very definition has to be false is meaningless.

So can we assume you don't consider yourself "gay or bi" either but, rather, a mainstream heterosexual as well?

Hmmmm... you know, that question made me realize I've not really thought about it.

The guy I'm in love with says I was made for it... and he is heterosexual so the need I mentioned above is very relevant. LOL.

And while I've never been interested in girls, and while getting propositioned to by gay guys did give me a thrill, I couldn't imagine making love to a guy as a guy.

So... now I'm curious. How do you see me?


"If could choose only one which would be more important to you, "acceptance" or "passing"?

That is an inane question. It implies staying forever in the twilight zone. Passing sans assimilation is torture. And I believe non-passing, acceptance and non-assimilation would be a thousand times worse.

By the way I trust we mean the same thing by passing? As in always getting shown to the women's side at public baths, that is. And being told to back to get your own photo ID at a voting booth because the social security number on it is male. Not occasionally getting mistaken for a woman when shopping or dining.

What does your therapist aim for anyway? Why do people go to her? What do they need that she offers?

Or—does she use that question just to assess the clients' whereabouts? LOL

Indeed it seems trans people do face a double-whammy but I was always under the impression my transition was to resolve all those "differences"? That compromise not only wasn't an option but to be avoided at all cost?

I guess you get what you pay for, if you're willing to pay the price. Elisabeth's was very high. So was Complete's. And Dena's. I'm still paying. To me trying to keep anything of my past seems a monkey trap.

Offline Kiera

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2020, 06:29:35 AM »
So... now I'm curious. How do you see me?

     Unsure if ever posted but I don't even know what age you are.
(I should also note am babysitting two 'till Sunday with daughter on hiatus from kids in Destin beach again thus why my posts might seem highly edited & disconnected . . It simply amazes me that his drug-addled father, not only unable to watch the kids, but even flatly refuses to change his poopy diaper!)
There's definitely a generational divide at work
in our "non-gendered communities" as well.

Nobody is really into a woman's birthright anymore which is "family"? Am thinking can it always be this way or got "LQBTQ" to thank?

    Did you read that entire paragraph? They're simply contrasting/pointing out the two types of "feminine expression" and ya shouldn't otherwise read too much into the words being chosen. Pretty sure that piece was written by Kay Brown using "Alex" as a pseudonym to protect herself from forever indignant tranny backlash . . and believe "spontaneous" Elisabeth knows her personally as well?

"This would seem to imply then that cross-gendered behavior is a deliberate expression of an internal gender identity disturbance and not spontaneous, otherwise choosing to 'express' or 'repress' a crossgender-identification would not be an option."

Offline Maddie

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2020, 07:54:47 AM »
I managed to delete my previous, rather lengthy response so here is the short version.
Once my body, (genitalia), had been surgically altered to conform with my brain/mind/soul/self-image....
My sexual attraction, (sexual target), accommodated itself quite comfortably to my current natural state.
I really, really like men. 😀😀😀😃😄

Sorry I missed the long version   :D
Head up moving forward

Offline Complete

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2020, 08:59:15 AM »
I wonder if anyone here has ever heard an old colloquialism once popular among older, long-term, early in life, post-op women. It goes like this: "Those who can, do. Those who cannot, teach."
Statements like the following bring that old saying to mind.
Quote
This would seem to imply then that cross-gendered behavior is a deliberate expression of an internal gender identity disturbance and not spontaneous, otherwise choosing to 'express' or 'repress' a crossgender-identification would not be an option."
In a way, l can understand this effort to try to make sense, or explain, what is going on within our heads. What caused it. How did/does it happen? What does it mean?
I'm pretty sure many of us went through this as children and sadly, many still continue to struggle with these questions into early adulthood and beyond.
Speaking from the "privilege" of almost 50 years of lived, post-op experience, l would suggest that such endless worrying and studying and trying to find an answer to those questions is a tragic waste of precious time.
In my very fortunate case, l did not have access to any answers to those questions, or even any of those learned men and women still dissecting the latest theories.
The only question l could possibly answer was, "What could l do about it?"
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 10:40:25 AM by Complete »

Offline Kiera

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2020, 12:56:54 PM »
The only question l could possibly answer was, "What could l do about it?"

      Suppose your right. Surely one can do a lot more today with even less questions asked (or answered) and the only thing that really matters today is PRICE? I'd like to think there's better "follow up" today and with "LGBT" becoming more popular everywhere suppose RL "social success" is now a relative benchmark.

Am almost GLAD didn't take any of this too seriously 40 years ago!

     Therapist Erin, who I've known for 12 years, is now retired and, between speaking engagements, mostly just mods various groups mine of which consists mostly of older, post-transition individuals. (age range? 40 to ? ? lol "Dana" was employed/working in 1961 so go figure!)
"Those who can, do. Those who cannot, teach."
They say that 'bout teachers and preachers as well.

Offline Complete

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #15 on: June 26, 2020, 04:13:41 PM »
Quote
They say that 'bout teachers and preachers as well.

Yupp

Offline zirconia

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #16 on: June 26, 2020, 04:49:20 PM »
Did you read that entire paragraph?

Hi, Kiera

I did, actually. But it seemed strange even as a whole.

It reads:

"Transsexuals who are variant in behavior from their biological sex are said to be "expressing their gender identity" and their femininity is said to be a way of showing on the outside behaviorally how they feel on the inside. A biological male who speaks or behaves in a "feminine" way is therefore consciously expressing their cross-gender identification, and this behavior is the product of an identity disturbance (APA, 2000). A biological male transsexual who on the other hand, appears very masculine in manner and lifestyle, has the same gender identity, but decides not to express it, (Samons, 2001a) possibly for fear of some sort of negative reprisal. This would seem to imply then that cross-gendered behavior is a deliberate expression of an internal gender identity disturbance and not spontaneous, otherwise choosing to 'express' or 'repress' a crossgender-identification would not be an option."[/i]

Notice, what is "expressed" or "repressed" is behavior until the very end, until it changes to identification. The wording is well thought out and deliberate. But anyway, the very first sentence alone is enough. The way it's constructed makes the proposed premise false.

... but... analysis like this really has very little bearing on real life. While it is an interesting exercise for when one is bored, it seems to me ultimately quite fruitless.

I did read a bit more in order to write the above—and it just reminded me of the armies of theories and dogma pitted against one another that so terrified me when started to look for a way out. None of whose end results seemed even close to what I needed. LOL.

Speaking from the "privilege" of almost 50 years of lived, post-op experience, l would suggest that such endless worrying and studying and trying to find an answer to those questions is a tragic waste of precious time.

Yes...
It is the end result that matters...♡

Offline Complete

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2020, 05:12:10 PM »
Wow! Now this was unexpected:
Quote
Am almost GLAD didn't take any of this too seriously 40 years ago!
This is stunning! I must not be understanding you at all.
Are you suggesting that you have no regrets not having resolved your dysphoria 40 years ago?
Or....that you are content with your current psycho-sexual integration?

Offline zirconia

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #18 on: June 27, 2020, 07:10:14 PM »
Hi, Kiera

Suppose your right. Surely one can do a lot more today with even less questions asked (or answered) and the only thing that really matters today is PRICE? I'd like to think there's better "follow up" today and with "LGBT" becoming more popular everywhere suppose RL "social success" is now a relative benchmark.

Am almost GLAD didn't take any of this too seriously 40 years ago!

Hmmm... do you believe that the difficulties you would have faced would have outweighed the peace you'd have felt once assimilated? Or that you'd not have been able to get past the point of passing?

Or is the feeling hindsight based, seeing that you love your children? You wouldn't have had them, of course... and regret is a useless emotion... but do you feel a life of freedom would have been less beautiful than the one you had?

Our situations are obviously different. But I'm the only one I can use as comparison—so my apologies if this is off mark, but I could bear the situation only as long as I thought the destination worse than where I was. But once I saw what might be possible I had to drop everything. It had always been life or death... but I'd been able to shrivel and die slowly. Now it became incredibly acute.

Had I a family the situation would have been even worse... but your children are grown. What is it that is keeping you back now?

Therapist Erin, who I've known for 12 years, is now retired and, between speaking engagements, mostly just mods various groups mine of which consists mostly of older, post-transition individuals. (age range? 40 to ? ? lol "Dana" was employed/working in 1961 so go figure!)They say that 'bout teachers and preachers as well.

I see... so she poses the question in question at her lectures, then? Interesting... yes. It might make one think, and I guess an intelligent attender who thinks about it may see the inadequacy of both of the options.

But I hope she does also at least hint of the possibility of true normalcy...

Offline Complete

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Re: Sex, gender, sexual orientation, dogma and double standards
« Reply #19 on: June 27, 2020, 07:15:58 PM »
I guess I'm wondering why "mostly older, post-transition individuals" are attending "support" groups.