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Forums / Sexuality and gender identity / I want to live stealth (FTM)

Topic: I want to live stealth (FTM)

12 posts, 0 answered
  1. brian23
    brian23 avatar
    14 posts
    18 September 2020

    Hello, everyone.

    I'm a trans man. I've been hormonally transitioning for a little under 2 years, and I had top surgery (a double mastectomy) earlier this year. I have a beard, a deep voice, and am covered in body hair. I'm very happy with my body. I started actively questioning my gender identity at 18 years of age, and lasted 2 more years living as a female before I knew I had to take steps to affirm my true identity. My pre-transition life was miserable, and I was constantly overwhelmed by depression and dysphoria. Now that I'm free of that, I feel absolutely euphoric within myself.

    I transitioned super quickly, which was a privilege that I'm endlessly grateful for. All decisions were made with the input of multiple therapists and healthcare professionals. And now I'm left with a body I adore, living the life I dreamed of when I was a child.

    I'm kinda tired of talking about trans stuff, though. I get exhausted being in the community. I never got to live a "normal" life, and do "normal" things, like my peers. I didn't date or have average teenage experiences, because I was too busy trying to wrangle my sense of self into being that of a cisgender girl. I want to do all those things now, but I don't know how to move on (at least temporarily) from the transgender community.

    I just want to live my life as an average guy. I want my transition to be part of my medical history, and nothing more. I don't actively identify as transgender, I just feel male. In terms of categorisation and history, I am transgender, and I will always be a trans man; but in my day-to-day, I'd really rather just be me.

    I feel obligated to be an activist, but I feel like I need some time that's just devoted to me. I don't know what it's like to be in a relationship, or to properly fall in love, or to be recognised as male by coworkers/peers without the caveat of them knowing I have a female past.

    There's a lot of guilting that goes on, saying that people with privilege must perform activism. But I have been (among other things) suicidal, depressed, assaulted, and harassed... I do experience aspects of privilege, but I also resent the obligation to live a certain way because of that privilege, as if I haven't suffered too. Haven't I earned a few years of peace? Why can't I just be an average dude for a while? Must I remain this pubic about my gender history forever?

    A recent traumatic incident, in the trans community, has caused these feelings to intensify.

    3 people found this helpful
  2. white knight
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    white knight avatar
    9167 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to brian23
    Hi. Welcome

    I don't know enough about the topic of trans but I admire you and hope you evolve in a positive way.

    Two threads I've written might help. Use Google

    Beyondblue topic want to be a hermit?

    Beyondblue topic you are still a jigsaw piece

    Beyondblue topic the best praise you'll ever get

    Regards TonyWK
  3. Smoknkhan
    Smoknkhan avatar
    2 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to brian23
    I'm bi and it's frustrating that I don't get the respect that I deserve. I'm a 42 yr old male that has been troubled ally life and now all I want is to vanish, vanish from this existing life and not return. How can I get help when I really need someone to listen to me. I've never created problems for myself, thou others have through gelousy
  4. Smoknkhan
    Smoknkhan avatar
    2 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to brian23
    Brothers I know only too well as depression is a anxiety that causes multiple pain. I suffer from depression and anxiety, bipolar manic depression with a split personality disorders. I can't manage with the emotional breakdown. I feel like nothing matters after dealing with a family situation which caused me to being threatened by a few gangs, I was alone and afraid for my life. Slowly I am trying to get over my nerves as they are damaged. Please don't give up,as, I know how you feel when you get pulled from pillar to post.
  5. Sophie_M
    Community Moderator
    • Works for beyondblue moderating these forums
    Sophie_M avatar
    5672 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to Smoknkhan
    Hey Smoknkhan, welcome to our friendly online community, we are so glad you decided to join us here. Thank you for posting and sharing your experience. We are sorry you are feeling this pain of feeling like you are not listened to or getting the respect you truly deserve. That is a painful position to be in and can feel isolating. It is great you are here to reach out and share your feelings.

    It might be really helpful for you to start your own thread so that you can get the best support from our wonderful community. The first post on our FAQ thread includes instrcutions on how to start a new thread and start using the forums:
    https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/online-forums/welcome-and-orientation/the-forum-faq-thread-

    In the meantime, please also know that there is support available if you would like to talk these feelings through with a counsellor. You can contact our Support Service either by phone on 1300 22 4636, via webchat at https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/get-immediate-support or via email at infoline@beyondblue.org.au

    Our friends at Lifeline are also available anytime on 13 11 14 or you can visit https://www.lifeline.org.au/Get-Help/Online-Services/crisis-chat for online chat.

    Suicide Call Back Service are also available 24/7 on 1300 659 467 or you can visit their website for online chat: https://www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au/phone-and-online-counselling/

    Welcome again!
  6. brian23
    brian23 avatar
    14 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to white knight

    Thanks for your sentiment, TonyWK.

    I would like to educate you however, if you'll indulge me. I made this thread to receive support from others, not to educate others, but I suppose I should anyway.

    The sentence “I don't know enough about the topic of trans” doesn’t make sense. “Trans” is a modifier, not a standalone term. It would be more accurate to say “I don’t know enough about trans people” or, "I don't know enough about trans struggles". Similarly, it would be incorrect to say, “he is a trans”. It is correct to say, “he is a trans man”. The word "trans" is a descriptor.

    There is more information about transgender people here, including information about transgender terminology:

    https://www.transresearch.org.au/allies

    3 people found this helpful
  7. brian23
    brian23 avatar
    14 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to Smoknkhan
    Hello Smoknkhan. I hope you find the support you need on another thread. My experience as a gay transgender man is very different to yours, and I started this discussion to seek support for my specific circumstances, which involve a gender transition, inter-community relations, and the burden of being public about my medical history. Please seek comfort through another post, where individuals will be able to devote their time to giving you advice.
  8. white knight
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    white knight avatar
    9167 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to brian23
    Thanks Brian. I stand educated and happy to be so.

    IT reflected my naivety

    TonyWK
  9. Ggrand
    Community Champion
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    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Ggrand avatar
    8923 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to brian23

    Hello Brian23...

    I think if you go with your heart and do what it wants to do..you can’t go wrong...I mean if you want to move on...Please do so...I don’t feel your obligated to anyone but yourself....You need to now enjoy the life that you have previously been denied...by no fault of you...

    Im wondering with your depression and suicidal thoughts if you could make an appointment with your GP for professional help..in the way of councilling...Depression is very hard to manage on your own..In my opinion it’s nearly impossible...Do you think you would consider reaching out for help to your GP...

    I think again..to go with your heart and soul in who you wish to tell about being transgender...Break away from your past Brian..start living a life that you have been meant to live...Move away from the publicity of you..you don’t need it..you need to live for you and no one else..

    You are you..your heart is beautiful, let your life be beautiful and just be you...

    My kind thoughts with care..

    Grandy..

    1 person found this helpful
  10. brian23
    brian23 avatar
    14 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to Ggrand

    Thanks very much Grandy, I really appreciate you taking the time to give me this beautiful reassurance. It feels wonderful to be given permission to put myself first.

    I think part of the issue is some of the younger transgender communities, on certain social media platforms. I’m overwhelmed by all the things I’m reading and seeing. It’s crushing me with its weight. The dialogue is often so hostile and intense, and I just feel exhausted by it. There's an obligation that we must bare our souls and make this private part of our lives utterly public, but just for a while I want to say, "no, that's personal". I don't want anyone to bother me.

    A lot of people compare being stealth with being a closeted gay/bi/pan person, which I think is a mistake. I don't want to be stealth because I'm at all ashamed, and I'm not "lying" by being stealth. I want to be stealth because I'm finally the man I've always wanted to be, and I don't care to have my past discussed or considered. I just want to be male, and when people know you're trans, they don't always afford you that basic courtesy. It's not hiding who I am, it's being who I am.

    Cheers for your concerns about my mental health! I have a therapist who is very knowledgeable about transgender people, they’re very good. They wrote my dysphoria diagnosis letter so that I could get top surgery, and I’m very safe in their company. I’m not handling my depression on my own, they are definitely helping me.

    I was actually diagnosed with a hereditary anxiety disorder a few years back, and am very comfortable managing that condition. But the mounting frustration of being a vocal member of the transgender community is suffocating me, even though I have all these measures in place to be mentally stable. So I'm at a crossroads, and I need to figure out how to extricate myself from a community which is so entwined with my social life.

    Again, thank you for your lovely reassurance and advice. I hope you've had a great day.

    3 people found this helpful
  11. Ggrand
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Ggrand avatar
    8923 posts
    19 September 2020 in reply to brian23

    Hello Dear Brian23..

    I really do believe that you should put yourself first, you’ve had a rough time through your life, and now it’s your turn...to shine and enjoy your life..

    I am sorry but I am very naive in knowing much about the thoughts/feeling etc...in regards to trans people, bi, gay... I consider everyone as a unique and beautiful person..and everyone has the right to live the best life they can...

    I just wanted to pop in and let you know in my earlier post....That your life is your life, and you’re entitled and deserve time out for yourself...away from social media and publicity...You have no need to feel any guilt at all about wanting a private life....That’s what everyone wants and deserves...

    My Kind and caring thoughts dear Brian23

  12. Guest3488756
    Guest3488756 avatar
    198 posts
    20 September 2020 in reply to Ggrand
    Hey brian23 I hear and feel your pain.
    As an afab myself I relate to the idea of wanting/being stealth.Bssying that I don't want to make this thread about me, and i hear and understand the frustration if I take away from what you are trying to say and take away from the support you are trying to receive.

    Being an advocate or voice for the trans community is hard and can get so tiring. Having to constantly answer questions when we just want to be out true selves and to be seen by the world as we are and not who we were.

    I think it is possible to be stealth in the outside world whilst also being an advocate and speaking up for trans issues and not letting discrimination or transphobia or even just lack of education get in the way. There is a time and place for both, I think finding the balance would be key. I have no idea how you could achieve that though sorry.

    I'm sorry I can't really help with any advice, but I just wanted to let you know I hear you and want to acknowledge how strong and amazing you are. I hope you manage to find some peace through this.

    -C

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