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Heart

Different Dysphorias

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Heart

Let's talk about dysphoria. There has been some interest recently expressed in sharing and bonding over experiences of dysphoria, as well as exploring how varied and individual it is.


I will be using the term gender dysphoria to describe any and all dysphorias related to gender (basically anything gendered that makes you feel uncomfortable or pained), including body dysphoria (a discomfort with how your body is configured in some way, usually but not always in relation to primary or secondary sexual characteristics), social dysphoria (a discomfort with social conventions relating to gender and how people gender you; a discomfort with the way that people perceive you to be gendered, including pronouns, washroom usage, and anything else that could count as a social convention), mental dysphoria (a discomfort with how your mental foundation is built; not liking the way your mental state seems gendered), and any other kind of dysphoria or combinations thereof.

So let's talk about it! Gender dysphoria is a very individual and personal experience. Everyone feels it differently. Not only does it manifest differently, but it also is triggered by different things or events, and everyone deals with it differently. Dysphoria is as varied a thing as favourite foods, and that's the beauty of individuality! Let's talk about our experiences, share stories, anecdotes, ways of explaining the experience to people who do not experience gender dysphoria of any sort, and ways of dealing with it. The good, the bad, the ugly. This is the thread to get together and share. Maybe we can learn from each other :D

So how do you deal with your gender-related pains and discomforts? What causes them or sets them off, or are they seemingly random? Do you call them dysphoria, or do you give it another name? How do you describe it to those who have never experienced it, to help them understand? Do you have any favourite articles or graphics to help with describing your experience to others, or that helped you discover a word for your own? What is your definition of dysphoria?

If you don't experience dysphoria, do you have any questions for those of us who do? Don't be afraid to ask away, anyone is welcome in this thread!

IMPORTANT GROUND RULES:

1) No one's dysphoria is any more or less important than anyone else's. Let's try to treat everyone with respect, and avoid "ranking" who is "more dysphoric" than who.
2) If you want to share something particularly graphic in nature, please add a content warning and spoiler the actual text. For example, if I want to describe in detail a penis, I would put "Content Warning: Penis description" and then put the appropriate text in between tags such as the following (delete the ~ marks, so it will work): [~spoiler~] text [~/spoiler~]. This will show like this:

text

That way, people can choose whether or not to read it by clicking on the "show" button.

3) If something you want to share is particularly likely to cause stress, dysphoria or a flashback for those who have been through traumatic experiences, please do the same spoiler trick and precede it with a trigger warning. For example, if I am going to describe a rape scene, I would do the following: "Trigger Warning: Rape" and then put the text in a spoiler.

4) Be nice. Just generally be nice. We're here to support each other and grow as a community, so let's get to it! ;)

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butterflydreams

Thank you thank you thank you! I remember you mentioning something like this a while back and I'm so excited to see this thread! I'm at work now, but I'll definitely be looking to contribute some content later :)

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Confusion 0

I have actually experienced a kind of body dysphoria...

I have always been confused about my gender. I never felt like my body was wrong or anything, but I always imagined I'd be happier female. It got to the point where I tried putting my hair up in pigtails, just like I always fantasized a female me would have. At first, I felt silly, but I went along with it, and eventually came to really enjoy the experience. Only problem was, after a while, I got this subtle feeling that the body I was using... Wasn't mine. It got worse when I tried to urinate; I felt like I wanted a vagina.

I have written about this in more detail in my own thread, but I cannot paste anything into this box for some reason. Heart, if you're reading this; you've commented in my thread, and should know what I'm on about. If you could put a link to it that would be great ;)

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Heart

Sure thing Confusion! The thread is here, and the posts I think you're trying to cite is the following:

... Hence my name.

Hi everyone! I am a 19-year-old heterosexual male, but I'm not sure I feel like a male.

First of all, I've never been very masculine. I don't have any typical masculine personality traits. In fact, I think I have more feminine personality traits if I'm honest.

I don't feel uncomfortable in my own body, but I'd rather not have a penis or testicles, but don't know what I'd rather have in their place (I just think penises and testicles are horrible).

Sometimes I have these fantasies where I'm a girl, but if I was a girl, I'd much prefer to be nearly flat-chested. Unlike what I said before, in this case I would rather have a vagina than nothing. In these fantasies, I still see myself attracted solely to females.

I like dressing in male clothing, and sometimes when I see another guy, I'll think "Wow, I like his style". With females, I can appreciate how they dress, but it's in more of an 'attraction' way.

I like having long hair.

I started growing a beard in my mid-teens to stop being mistaken for a girl, but these days I'm thinking of just shaving it off. It just feels 'too' masculine for me.

If I were ever in a relationship, I'd prefer to be the younger partner.

I am very empathic, and feel really bad about hurting anyone's feelings. I also get lonely very easily and like to chat with people whenever possible. I am very honest towards people I talk to, and feel bad about being dishonest/lying. I admit when I'm wrong, and accept my defeat with dignity.

I've considered cross-dressing, but I don't think I like the idea, I just wouldn't feel right. If I had a female body, yeah, I'd go for it.

I don't have any typical masculine or feminine interests. Instead, I have rather neutral interests such as music, art and nature.

My subconscious mind is definitely male. Just trust me on this one.

I don't like very masculine people, whether they are male or female. I just don't get on very well with them.

In general, I'd say I feel like... Me, but I don't know who me is. Thanks for reading everyone, and I hope you have some helpful things to say :D

Thanks for trying to help guys, but I did a little experiment of my own, and the results were very strange.

Basically, I shaved my beard off, and put my hair up in pigtails (I always pictured a female me to have pigtails). At first, I felt awkward and silly, but after a while, I began to actually feel like girl. At first, I went a bit hyper, as it felt amazing. But that's when it started to get a bit odd... First of all, I disliked the clothes I was wearing. I was fine before, but now it just didn't feel like they were very 'me'. The second thing I noticed was when I went to make a sandwich, I had this feeling of "Why am I doing this? Someone else should make it for me". Third, I went to the toilet and when I started urinating, I just thought "This doesn't feel right. I want a vagina". Then, later on, I realised I wasn't happy with the actual size of my body. I felt I should have been substantially shorter. The fifth thing I noticed was that I started to feel like an imposter. I felt like I didn't know either of my dogs, and using my computer felt like I was invading someone's privacy. The sixth thing I didn't like was being called by my 'male' name when I was talking to my (very supportive) friends. I wanted a female name to be referred to as. One thing that didn't change was the fact that I still spoke the same way when I was talking to my friends online through text. When I eventually let my hair down again after many hours of feeling like a girl, I just went back to normal again.

My conclusion is that I have some kind of young girl personality inside me, which I can choose to turn on and off, just by changing my hair. It would explain my asexuality if half of me is a child. It also explains how I always felt comfortable being male, but also wanted to be female at the same time.

This doesn't even sound like genderfluid or DID, as I am in control of when I change personality.

Well, now I'm curious as to what I really am yet again. I do miss female me at the moment, and I will be visiting her again soon.

Did I get it right?

Also, WOW! Six likes on the OP in only a few hours. I am so happy that people like this :D

Hadley, sometimes it takes me a while to get around to things, and sometimes I even forget. But I do often actually do things. If I ever get behind on something you're looking forward to, then don't hesitate to remind me! I try, but I'm only human after all ;)

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Janus DarkFox
Nice guidance yes, yeah a councillor mentioned a type of gender dysphoria triggered by extreme body changes, people experiencing extreme weight loss like i did could experience gender questioning the more the body changes gets healthier, so does the mind and the persons difficulty in accepting their own gendered body. An aspect in my case of Aspergers influences my general apathy towards societical and personal gender identity, thus feeling un-gendered, yet comfortable with the body i currently have. Indeed everyones feeling and views on gender are different. Theres often crazy communities that go directly against those rules. Not suprizing that ive got myself banned from extremist gender equality communitys simply because, I have a penis means im male and responsible for all other male rules and stuff like that, also some toxic Tumblr blogs. This ruling should now protect all no matter what whos feels what gender or not.

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butterflydreams

Hadley, sometimes it takes me a while to get around to things, and sometimes I even forget. But I do often actually do things. If I ever get behind on something you're looking forward to, then don't hesitate to remind me! I try, but I'm only human after all ;)

Oh I didn't mean to imply you had forgotten about it :) Actually, I had been pushing the idea around in my head, trying to think of what to write or how best to get a thread like this rolling. I was going to pitch it to you, but you beat me to it!

Ok, this is lacking my writing's usual continuity, but I kind of like the stream of consciousness I'm doing here.

I guess the first thing I'd want to tell people about dysphoria that I've seen very infrequently elsewhere is coping mechanisms. They are very real, and they're also a very natural response to discomfort. In my case, they were so natural, and so gradual, it kind of had the effect of finally "waking up" one day, looking back on my life, seeing the decline and thinking, "what the hell have I done?"

I can't even get over what a natural response it is. It's insidious! Like, I can remember very, very early in my life, around 5 years old, listening to story time in kindergarten. Now, there weren't many stories where characters changed gender (trademarked, no one can take that idea ;)), but there were lots of stories where a character transformed into something. This captured my mind so strongly even then, and I remember feeling...just...absolutely gross about how much I wanted that ability to transform.

I've never told the following to anyone before, but it's relevant here, so here you go. By the time I got older and hit puberty, I remember thinking that if I just thought hard enough, I could become a girl. Like I could will it to just happen. Now, being a teenager at the time, I had no reference for this. At the time, I thought trans women were what you became if you were really, really gay, which I was not. I labeled it a weird fetish in my head, assumed everyone felt like that but never talked about it, and moved on with my life. It's hard to describe how hard I wished for it sometimes. This coincided with when I first started to understand the differences in male/female anatomy.

I also became extremely self-conscious about facial hair at that time, and leg hair, which was thicker and denser than anyone else in my immediate family. It was pretty lame, really. There were several years of summers in there where I just stopped going swimming. Prior to that, I loved swimming so much I never would've gotten out of the lake if my parents hadn't told me to. I eventually got back into it, but only years later, and even now, it's like I'm completely disconnected from my body if I'm sitting there on the beach in swim trunks and no shirt.

Another weird thing I never really told anyone was how I actually did things to try to hide the fact that I was a boy. It's weird because no one was fooled, ever. But in my head, I just instinctively did things that made me feel like it was hiding that fact. I never even thought about why I did it, I just did. They were subtle things too, very subtle.

TMI spoiler for genitals stuff

I don't know how much of a thing it is for people to notice a penis or testicles through pants. I mean, there's this old video of Led Zeppelin performing and Robert Plant has these super tight jeans on and, well, it doesn't leave much to the imagination, let's just say that.

For me though, if I could see it, or if I could tell it was making any visible indent on my pants, that was 1000% unacceptable. The reason? People would find out I was a boy. Even though there was no doubt anyway. That would surely give it away. (That was genuinely my thought process).

If you want to know what "broke the camel's back" with all this, it was when I sent some pictures of myself on a cycling trip to my dad. He responded that he liked the pictures and was proud that I looked like "such a nice young man." I don't know. Maybe no one had ever said anything to me like that before. Maybe I was finally open to how much that wasn't me. All I know is that statement hurt. I didn't know why, and digging into it led me to trans.

So with all these things that happened to me, or that I experienced, the recurring theme is coping. Something hurts? Damage control. Cauterize it. Amputate it. Shut it down. Turn it off. Do that enough times and there won't be much left (as there wasn't with me at a point). And when you've done all that, and say, "Am I really feeling dysphoria?" it's easy to think, no, not really, I don't think so. But what's missing is that all the parts of you, the important parts, have been shut down or removed. That's why dysphoria is so amorphous and vague. You've essentially "cured" it, but at what cost?

I wouldn't say that dysphoria is something I can consciously point to and say, "yeah, I'm feeling it right now." I think it has to be enabled by something happening. For now, the only thing I can point to is my years-long bout with depression. Heh, that's another thing to consider: depression. Maybe I'll write about that another time :)

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C-3PO

I know I suffer from physical and social dysphoria, I guess I'll just talk about that?

physical dysphoria

My chest. It is the one part of my body I absolutely despise and want to get rid of on a daily basis. When I look into a mirror I feel as if it doesn't belong. My binder never binds enough and I avoid sitting/standing in certain angles in which my chest is more obvious.

I also have a question, does anybody else feel like they can't breathe properly sometimes? And not necesserily binder-related. For example I'm lying in bed and I have to focus on my breathing to get enough air in, it is very scary at times.

I also am dysphoric about my curves and feminine, soft face, just general the femininity of my body, just not as intense as my chest. Lately I've noticed I really don't like my legs in jeans from the women's departement and I seriously need more jeans from the men's departement anyway.

social dysphoria

I am quite feminine in my behavior, and I don't really feel like changing that ever, but how people read me because of that bothers me so much. Every time somebody calls me a girl, their daughter, or sister, or girlfriend(you know friend who is a girl, in Dutch we have a better word for it), or uses she/her pronouns, I'm like 'yea, hehe, a girl, thats me, hahah, ahahahaha, aha, o h yes'. It's very alienating(I think that's the word?). Despite all of that I think I experience more social euphoria than dysphoria, when somebody calls me a body(like, adress me as 'young man' or use he/him pronouns) I get this rush of happiness and it makes my day.

When I picture myself in the future I see this skinny guy(I mean, I am a skinny guy right now, but, more like a cis guy) with coloured hair and a deep voice and masc clothes that fit really well and that makes me very happy. I like to imagine me introducing myself as Artemis and people seeing a boy, using he/him right away without even being asked, the only thought crossing their mind is what a unique name Artemis is. Because that's who I am. A guy with a unique name.

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C-3PO

I can't even get over what a natural response it is. It's insidious! Like, I can remember very, very early in my life, around 5 years old, listening to story time in kindergarten. Now, there weren't many stories where characters changed gender (trademarked, no one can take that idea ;)), but there were lots of stories where a character transformed into something. This captured my mind so strongly even then, and I remember feeling...just...absolutely gross about how much I wanted that ability to transform.

(that quote is a bit messed up but whatever)

but the ability to transform!! I never really thought about it, but when I was younger(like, elementary school age) I used to imagine myself waking up as a dog or something silly. Transforming is something that has always captured my attention. For example, Tonks from the Harry Potter books, she can transform however she wants and I love that so much! I don't know if that's in any way related to me being trans(I mean, I'd still love the ability to transform, for obvious reasons, but is that the same?), but it's a thing??

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butterflydreams

I can't even get over what a natural response it is. It's insidious! Like, I can remember very, very early in my life, around 5 years old, listening to story time in kindergarten. Now, there weren't many stories where characters changed gender (trademarked, no one can take that idea ;)), but there were lots of stories where a character transformed into something. This captured my mind so strongly even then, and I remember feeling...just...absolutely gross about how much I wanted that ability to transform.

(that quote is a bit messed up but whatever)

but the ability to transform!! I never really thought about it, but when I was younger(like, elementary school age) I used to imagine myself waking up as a dog or something silly. Transforming is something that has always captured my attention. For example, Tonks from the Harry Potter books, she can transform however she wants and I love that so much! I don't know if that's in any way related to me being trans(I mean, I'd still love the ability to transform, for obvious reasons, but is that the same?), but it's a thing??

I think at the time I was just too young to have a concept of gender, so it manifested as it did. I think later on it was this same thing that stayed in my mind.

There were also unprompted times when I was a little kid where I just felt this horrible feeling about my entire body. It's really hard to describe, but the best way I can put it is that I felt gross about having the body I did. It was weird because this was definitely before I understood there were male and female bodies.

I eventually stopped having that feeling as often as I did, probably because I did whatever was necessary to make it go away.

TMI

I've noticed that it tends to come back a lot in recent times during masturbation :( ...but, I've been able to mitigate that by changing techniques.

Weirdest part? That whole feeling? I balk at calling it dysphoria even now. Even though it sounds textbook to me. Not sure why.

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Light02

I hate my chest so much. It feels wrong on me. I don't get why I have it. It makes me so uncomfortable and stressed all the time. I somehow simultaneously forget that it's there and I can never forget about it. I'm big chested and when people say something about that I get startled and upset. Like, why do you have to mention that??! I also always try to hide the straps of my bra because I don't want people to know I'm wearing one because, similarly to what Hadley said, I don't want them to find out that I'm a girl, even though everybody already knows. I'm going to bind at some point, for sure.

Besides that, I really hate make-up. I never wear it but when my best friend wants to give me a makeover I let her do it because I trust her and I feel like I can let her see me like that, even though I feel strange looking so feminine. It's when she makes me go out in public like that when it gets bad. I try to tell myself that nobody's looking, that people don't care since I look like every other girl but I still feel scared and anxious and I imagine everyone is thinking how feminine I look. If she doesn't come with me out in public right after she's given me a makeover I start rubbing it off with my hands while crying in the elevator. I've never worn high heels in my life but just the thought of me with high heels sounds so stupid and ridiculous and wrong. I can't even imagine wearing them in public. I would die of anxiety and trying to hide behind bushes, trees, everything. I also don't like skirts, they make me mildly uncomfortable but I looove dresses! I also like my long hair and I want it to be even longer, as long as possible, actually. I don't want to ever cut my hair short.

On the flip side, when I was 8 I dressed like a boy (and I called myself a gay boy, haha) and I felt great! Relaxed, confident, happy in my own skin... Then I turned twelve, had to go to a different class and I started getting bullied, so I stopped doing that. But a couple of months ago my dad told me that a pair of his old jeans doesn't fit him anymore, so he gave it to me. They fit me and I thought I looked awesome! I wanted to wear them all the time and I thought I looked much better wearing men's jeans rather than women's. That same day I went out with my best friend and I wore my dad's jeans and I told her that I think I look great. She just looked at me and told me to never wear them again. And ever since, I haven't. But at least recently me and my mom went shopping and I managed to make her buy me a pair of men's sneakers. I love these shoes so much and now every time I'm feeling bad about something I look down at them and that makes me happier.

Another thing that upsets me is when people tell me I'm feminine. When that first started happening a lot I thought about it and realized that yeah, I think I do act quite feminine. But I feel masculine. That kinda doesn't make sense but it's the way I feel.

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littlepersonparadox

I think haley and I when we were younger dealt with the dysphoria the same way. I talked before about hiding it, denying it and pinning it on a million other reasons. When i finally realised i was trans i had to start thinking of other ways to deal with it. Healthier ways other than lie to yourself or igore it becasue its "A weird feeling that just goes away" As a result i'm doing things that i suppose you would call experimenting to figure out what transition to do. (I'm not purely one gender or the other - i.e. gender-mutt / multigender so I want to lean male but I don't need a 100% change)

Body dysphoria

The main source of this is my breasts. I just can't see myself moving forward with them. I remember being in 6th grade and they had us draw ourselves as we see ourselves now, how we want to be (5 years) in the future. I drew myself the exact same way in both images: Breastless with a neutral sporty shirt and pants. Mom thought it was cute seeing it as that i'm 100% happy with my body rather than a resilience to change. We had a substitute teacher who i think commented on it as unusal and asked me about my gender. Having never seen or hear of the idea even of transgender I just defaulted to saying: I'm a girl. (in high school i also would do things similar to hadely or light - always covering up / hiding that part even though it was obvious - Some teachers predicted i was trans then too. Although then i had a silly misconception that you had to be 100% the other one - not a mash up :P)

Now I bind and that helps but it's not perfect. Getting them removed is something i've been thinking aobut for a year now and yea - I want that. Why? Because my breasts although i

don't hate them are not me. I dissociate from them.

Trigger for: dysphoric event description.

Also i found I hate doing activities that remind me that i have them. DELAY! DELAY GETTING DRESSED AT ALL COSTS! SCREW THE BRAS! :P Swimming though was my biggest resentment. It probably didn't help my already hate on bathing suits that the camp i went to as a kid would dump a bucket of mud on you if you went into the dinning hall in a bathing suit. The logic was wet bathing suits = infections of the you-know-where and therefore long wet bathingsuit time periods are to be avoided. So that delayed me some time by going wet bathingsuit = natural itchiness = why i feel the need to take 2 showers after swimming. Just ignore the fact that self-conscious feeling of my body. Out of curiosity did anyone elses all girls camp implement that? Everyone else i talk to goes "No....."

My lower half i do get dysphoric about but not often. Also i find if i pack it feels like its already a part of me so that's enough to keep that form of dysphoria gone.

Social dysphoria

Social dysphoria for me is a biggie. I find I'm not associating me with what they say about me if they use female pronouns too often. Again there interacting with the shell not the person. Female pronouns are fine if you use them a couple times - no dysphoria there. But more than once and now that i'm starting to reconnect myself with what i want to be i feel a need to go "Not a girl - Someone who's mostly sitting on the other side here - hi you ya non-binaries exist." I suppose its because instead of a complete disconnect from feelings its starting to shift to more feeling ignored internally as i stop trying to run from internal emotional stuff.

mind dysphoria

This something i don'g get personally. Don't get me wrong it still bugs me. But more on a "You really think action is tied to gender? I do because of who i am as a person with a personality not because of how i'm supposed/do to identify gender wise."

Swimming

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Kappamaki

I can't even get over what a natural response it is. It's insidious! Like, I can remember very, very early in my life, around 5 years old, listening to story time in kindergarten. Now, there weren't many stories where characters changed gender (trademarked, no one can take that idea ;)), but there were lots of stories where a character transformed into something. This captured my mind so strongly even then, and I remember feeling...just...absolutely gross about how much I wanted that ability to transform.

(that quote is a bit messed up but whatever)

but the ability to transform!! I never really thought about it, but when I was younger(like, elementary school age) I used to imagine myself waking up as a dog or something silly. Transforming is something that has always captured my attention. For example, Tonks from the Harry Potter books, she can transform however she wants and I love that so much! I don't know if that's in any way related to me being trans(I mean, I'd still love the ability to transform, for obvious reasons, but is that the same?), but it's a thing??

Just want to pop in here and confirm that transformation fantasies, both gender-related and not, continue to be a huge thing for me. Whenever anyone's ever asked me what super power I'd want, it's always the transformation abilities of Mystique from X-Men or Tonks from Harry Potter or Loki from Norse myth. It's a huge part of why I've been so interested in mythology my whole life (everything's turning into other stuff all the time, and just look at Ovid's Metamorphoses), and it's actually part of the reason I write. Sure, love of exploring different cultures and inventing worlds and just reading and writing stories in general all influence why I've chosen this path for myself, but that won't change that a lot of my first forays into fiction as a teenager were explorations of the theme of transformation.

And, like Hadley, I was pretty certain on some powerful but irrational level that if I wanted it hard enough, I could avert puberty and twist it to my own ends. I think this belief might have been necessary for me to survive, since I still, long after puberty's done its work, haven't entirely let go of this idea and really want to think I succeeded if only a little. This also translated into some serious denial and had a strong influence on my presentation and drove me to various coping mechanisms (generally drawing self-portraits, thinking up and writing transformation stories, and playing videogames with gender-appropriate characters). I would've identified as trans since age twelve or so if I knew that it existed and wasn't just something done by homosexual male prostitutes and shady back-alley doctors like the media said. As it was, I was legitimately waiting for Ghost in the Shell technology so I could save up for a cyborg body that fit my self-image. That was my actual life plan, and I was fully willing to get into a major accident to necessitate it if that's what it took. I also had an alternative shadow plan that I won't discuss at length because... um...

I didn't ever seriously consider suicide, at least partially because my father kept talking to me about it and impressing on me not to, but you know how when dogs know they're dying, they crawl under something to hide and then wait?

I think to some degree I considered transformation something sexual, since it turned me on (and still can sometimes) and I felt a strong need to hide it that I haven't entirely gotten over. Once I became active on the Internet I found transformations are actually a pretty common fetish - there's no shortage of art in places like DeviantArt, even if much of it is gross and over-sexualized. Oddly enough, about half the sex change artwork and stories are gender-essentialist and the other half are written by trans folk. In the trans population especially, if not always a fetish, transformations are at least a definite ingrained fascination.

And now I've talked forever about transformations on the dysphoria thread. Meh, I've also got issues with body and social dysphoria, but my mind is awesome, so it's fine (although I don't like how it's finite and reliant on meat), and seriously - transformation. It's a thing.

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Heart

I'm going to start this off by saying that I think Hadley is maybe the same person I am except that we should change bodies. Like, seriously, you can have mine, it's got breasts and hips and everything.

I guess the first thing I'd want to tell people about dysphoria that I've seen very infrequently elsewhere is coping mechanisms. They are very real, and they're also a very natural response to discomfort. In my case, they were so natural, and so gradual, it kind of had the effect of finally "waking up" one day, looking back on my life, seeing the decline and thinking, "what the hell have I done?"

I can't even get over what a natural response it is. It's insidious!


Looking back, it seems so obvious, doesn't it? Something is painful, something is wrong, something is uncomfortable, or just plain unpleasant. And you can't do anything about it, you don't even really understand it. Duh, there would be coping mechanisms! There are for literally everything else. In fact, a fmaily member of mine did their PhD on coping mechanisms for learning in university through online courses. If there are coping mechanisms for something as simple as trying to learn material online instead of having someone to talk to in person, why is something like gender dysphoria so automatically excluded??

I think a large reason so many people don't realise they have coping mechanisms is that part of these coping mechanisms is to not think about it. Like, at all. Just never think about your gender. It's painful to think about, so just don't do it, right? At least, I think that was a huge obstacle for me.

There were several years of summers in there where I just stopped going swimming. Prior to that, I loved swimming so much I never would've gotten out of the lake if my parents hadn't told me to. I eventually got back into it, but only years later, and even now, it's like I'm completely disconnected from my body if I'm sitting there on the beach in swim trunks and no shirt.

Swimming


I used to be a competitive swimmer. I even used to be a synchronized swimmer. My team even got to second place in the provincials. I made the provincials once or twice for speed swimming too, in various categories. Right around when my period started though, I started dreading swimming. Like, worse than anything else. I thought it was just because I couldn't comfortably use tampons, which I wrote off as just not having broken my hymen yet (but seriously, where did this myth of “breaking” the hymen come from? Screw that!). But yeah, my hymen was strong, and I couldn't comfortably use tampons (or so I told doctors, though I remember not trying too hard because the idea of something inside me.... EEW! Not going there. Period. No way. … another dysphoria I guess – man, I'm just finding them everywhere today, eh?). I didn't want to swim ever though, not just when I was on my period. Because if I swam sometimes, but not others, then people might realise that it was because I was on my period, and then they might realise that I was a girl. That would be the most embarassing thing ever. Not that they knew I was on my period. That they knew I was a girl.

So I stopped swimming. My sister went on to become a lifeguard, and I was at least as good as she, but now I can barely swim 100m IM, nonetheless the cool synchronized swimming tricks I used to be able to do before I was 12... I have lost so much :(

TMI spoiler for genitals stuff


I don't know how much of a thing it is for people to notice a penis or testicles through pants. I mean, there's this old video of Led Zeppelin performing and Robert Plant has these super tight jeans on and, well, it doesn't leave much to the imagination, let's just say that.

For me though, if I could see it, or if I could tell it was making any visible indent on my pants, that was 1000% unacceptable. The reason? People would find out I was a boy. Even though there was no doubt anyway. That would surely give it away. (That was genuinely my thought process).


Is it odd that, once upon a time, I used to like tight pants, because it showed the tiniest of bulges and I was happy with that? Hint: not even female bodies are concave down there, there's still a convex curvature to the genital area. Just not dangley bits. So I could almost pretend to have barbie doll genitalia with tight pants, because there would be no dangley bits, but also no concavity.

...Why did I think women had concave genital areas? That literally makes no sense. Of course they don't. I had a female body (I have a female body I guess.... if I must...), and I didn't. So why would everyone other AFAB's genitals look concave? I actually have no idea why my 8 year old brain thought this way, but it did :P

So with all these things that happened to me, or that I experienced, the recurring theme is coping. Something hurts? Damage control. Cauterize it. Amputate it. Shut it down. Turn it off.


Flinch away. Don't think about it. You just don't like that activity, so stop doing it. You just aren't naturally inclined for swimming, despite being amazing at it just last year. Just focus on other things.

Shut it out. Shut it out. Shut it out... until you forget that it's there.

I can't even get over what a natural response it is. It's insidious! Like, I can remember very, very early in my life, around 5 years old, listening to story time in kindergarten. Now, there weren't many stories where characters changed gender (trademarked, no one can take that idea ;)), but there were lots of stories where a character transformed into something. This captured my mind so strongly even then, and I remember feeling...just...absolutely gross about how much I wanted that ability to transform.

but the ability to transform!! I never really thought about it, but when I was younger(like, elementary school age) I used to imagine myself waking up as a dog or something silly. Transforming is something that has always captured my attention. For example, Tonks from the Harry Potter books, she can transform however she wants and I love that so much! I don't know if that's in any way related to me being trans(I mean, I'd still love the ability to transform, for obvious reasons, but is that the same?), but it's a thing??

Just want to pop in here and confirm that transformation fantasies, both gender-related and not, continue to be a huge thing for me. Whenever anyone's ever asked me what super power I'd want, it's always the transformation abilities of Mystique from X-Men or Tonks from Harry Potter or Loki from Norse myth. It's a huge part of why I've been so interested in mythology my whole life (everything's turning into other stuff all the time, and just look at Ovid's Metamorphoses), and it's actually part of the reason I write. Sure, love of exploring different cultures and inventing worlds and just reading and writing stories in general all influence why I've chosen this path for myself, but that won't change that a lot of my first forays into fiction as a teenager were explorations of the theme of transformation.


Oddly enough, I have never really had the transformation fantasies, outside of wanting to be a horse. But even that's not that strong. My biggest fantasies have always been to fly. 100% if you asked me what super power I want, it would be to float and fly. Though now that I think about it, somehow that power has to come with the compulsory insubstantiality. I have to be insubstantial, my body can't be fully solid... kinda whispy. And, gender-neutral. Didn't you know? You can only fly if you have a gender neutral body. No genitals or breasts allowed when flying. Duh.

And, like Hadley, I was pretty certain on some powerful but irrational level that if I wanted it hard enough, I could avert puberty and twist it to my own ends. I think this belief might have been necessary for me to survive, since I still, long after puberty's done its work, haven't entirely let go of this idea and really want to think I succeeded if only a little. This also translated into some serious denial and had a strong influence on my presentation and drove me to various coping mechanisms (generally drawing self-portraits, thinking up and writing transformation stories, and playing videogames with gender-appropriate characters). I would've identified as trans since age twelve or so if I knew that it existed and wasn't just something done by homosexual male prostitutes and shady back-alley doctors like the media said. As it was, I was legitimately waiting for Ghost in the Shell technology so I could save up for a cyborg body that fit my self-image. That was my actual life plan, and I was fully willing to get into a major accident to necessitate it if that's what it took. I also had an alternative shadow plan that I won't discuss at length because... um...

I didn't ever seriously consider suicide, at least partially because my father kept talking to me about it and impressing on me not to, but you know how when dogs know they're dying, they crawl under something to hide and then wait?


I think you will succeed in your transformation. It may be a bit more mundane than you imagined, and involve a lot more help from the medical system than you thought, but I believe in you!!! In my mind, you already are that beautiful manga woman in your profile pic, so why not be a beautiful female body in real life too? If there's a will, there's a way :wub:

Nice guidance yes, yeah a councillor mentioned a type of gender dysphoria triggered by extreme body changes, people experiencing extreme weight loss like i did could experience gender questioning the more the body changes gets healthier, so does the mind and the persons difficulty in accepting their own gendered body. An aspect in my case of Aspergers influences my general apathy towards societical and personal gender identity, thus feeling un-gendered, yet comfortable with the body i currently have. Indeed everyones feeling and views on gender are different. Theres often crazy communities that go directly against those rules. Not suprizing that ive got myself banned from extremist gender equality communitys simply because, I have a penis means im male and responsible for all other male rules and stuff like that, also some toxic Tumblr blogs. This ruling should now protect all no matter what whos feels what gender or not.

That actually makes a lot of sense to me, logically. I have never changed weight in any large amount, but it makes a lot of sense that a dramatic change in body shape in some way could trigger dysphoria and/or thoughts of gender. After all, body changes can be quite drastic, and they kinda force you to think about your body as you adjust and notice the change...

I also always try to hide the straps of my bra because I don't want people to know I'm wearing one because, similarly to what Hadley said, I don't want them to find out that I'm a girl, even though everybody already knows. I'm going to bind at some point, for sure.

Besides that, I really hate make-up. I never wear it but when my best friend wants to give me a makeover I let her do it because I trust her and I feel like I can let her see me like that, even though I feel strange looking so feminine. It's when she makes me go out in public like that when it gets bad. I try to tell myself that nobody's looking, that people don't care since I look like every other girl but I still feel scared and anxious and I imagine everyone is thinking how feminine I look. If she doesn't come with me out in public right after she's given me a makeover I start rubbing it off with my hands while crying in the elevator. I've never worn high heels in my life but just the thought of me with high heels sounds so stupid and ridiculous and wrong. I can't even imagine wearing them in public. I would die of anxiety and trying to hide behind bushes, trees, everything. I also don't like skirts, they make me mildly uncomfortable but I looove dresses! I also like my long hair and I want it to be even longer, as long as possible, actually. I don't want to ever cut my hair short.


It's funny how some things trigger such dysphoria, while others are completely ok, eh? I LOVE my long hair too, I would never want to cut it off. Even in my most masculine of days; I imagine myself being happy with a super feminine hari style, the wavy hair-in-the-wind style on magazine covers, fluffy and silky and flamboyant. And flat chested and in a male body. But without a penis.

It's really odd how some things just do it, while others don't. Also, when in “woman mode” of my gender fluidity, I love dresses and skirts and chocolate and high heels. But I hate having to pull my shoulders back and look assertive, as I often have to do in my job when doing things like presentations. I hate knowing that I have to come off as confident to win over others and convince them that I know what I'm doing. Whereas, nothing pleases me more than that when in “man mode”.

It really seems so arbitrary sometimes what triggers dysphoria and what doesn't. It's a lot of work to try and figure out what those things are sometimes. At least for me.

I remember being in 6th grade and they had us draw ourselves as we see ourselves now, how we want to be (5 years) in the future. I drew myself the exact same way in both images: Breastless with a neutral sporty shirt and pants.


You know, I have always thought the same thing. My ideal image of myself changes as my gender changes, but if I were ever to draw a self-portrait, I think it would be a picture of only my stomach. I have thought about this multiple times before. It would be me holding up my shirt (a loose shirt) just enough to reveal scars criss-crossing my stomach, over top of a strong, muscle-y physique. It would be not enough of my body to see the chest area, so you wouldn't know if I had breats or not. And my hips would be downplayed. And then, while one hand held up the shirt in that lop-sided way, the other would be holding a sword. Not in a threatening manner, but relaxed across the front in a diagonal, pointing down to the ground. There, but not threateningly. Just for confidence.

Because you know what? I have scars from life. Emotional, mental scars. Some physical ones, but they're just superficial. The mental ones are the ones in the picture. And they are the ones that make me beautiful. Because that sword has been used to fight my way through life. I have survived, and I continue to. Not only that. I thrive. And because of that, I am beautiful and strong. And that is who I am.

mind dysphoria

This something i don'g get personally. Don't get me wrong it still bugs me. But more on a "You really think action is tied to gender? I do because of who i am as a person with a personality not because of how i'm supposed/do to identify gender wise."


I don't really understand mind dysphoria either, to be honest. I gave the best definition I could, because I know there are people out there who use “mind dysphoria” to describe their experiences, and therefore I know it is legitimate. But I am not sure I grock it completely...

Weirdest part? That whole feeling? I balk at calling it dysphoria even now. Even though it sounds textbook to me. Not sure why.


Me too. I don't know why either.



Wow. Wall of text. :blink:

Sorry guys, but I guess I really needed to talk about dysphoria today :unsure:

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kiaroskuro

I don't really understand mind dysphoria either, to be honest. I gave the best definition I could, because I know there are people out there who use “mind dysphoria” to describe their experiences, and therefore I know it is legitimate. But I am not sure I grock it completely...

I was just going to ask you to explain in more detail what you mean by 'mind dysphoria' ... okay, no question then (:

I honestly have no clue what this term is supposed to mean. Browsing the web, I came across this definition: "discomfort someone feels when their thoughts and emotions are at odds with their sense of identity". I don't quite understand. Does it have to do with the alleged (!) brain differences between genders? If it does, I don't see how it's different from social dysphoria after all.

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littlepersonparadox

Hug. It happens. Sometimes we need to just vent.

Is anyone else here now seeing heart as some Androgynous/neutrois Adonis?

Self portraits can tell a lot. Also I think people use mind dysphoria because it's i suppose kinda like skirts or high heels - It's not necessarily needs to be defined by gender but behavior can be seen as a part of gender presentation. So doing something masculine or feminine could feel dysphoric if its as if your "giving" yourself away. I remember my old FTM boyfriend was really mind dysphoric. Or just really self-insecure? I think it was a bit of both. Anyway he was a really really broke collage student. I was - then- a "cis female" (didn't hit my own personal thats it there is no way i'm cis moment yet). As a result when we went on dates if i paid or held the door open etc. He would get frantic and feel not quite like a man and accuse me of not seeing him as one. (Yea lot of stuff going on within a short month relationship). I just got confused but tried to still find ways to spoil him on dates without having to pay.

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butterflydreams

I also always try to hide the straps of my bra because I don't want people to know I'm wearing one because, similarly to what Hadley said, I don't want them to find out that I'm a girl, even though everybody already knows. I'm going to bind at some point, for sure.

Most of the stuff I write here is stuff I've literally NEVER told anyone. I almost can't even believe there are actually other people out there who thought the same things I did, and did the same things I did, for the same reasons. Reasons which, at the time, seemed so unfathomably ridiculous that I buried them even from myself.

I didn't ever seriously consider suicide, at least partially because my father kept talking to me about it and impressing on me not to, but you know how when dogs know they're dying, they crawl under something to hide and then wait?

:( *all the feels*

I think to some degree I considered transformation something sexual, since it turned me on (and still can sometimes) and I felt a strong need to hide it that I haven't entirely gotten over. Once I became active on the Internet I found transformations are actually a pretty common fetish - there's no shortage of art in places like DeviantArt, even if much of it is gross and over-sexualized. Oddly enough, about half the sex change artwork and stories are gender-essentialist and the other half are written by trans folk. In the trans population especially, if not always a fetish, transformations are at least a definite ingrained fascination.

I think when I was younger, there was a sexualized slant, which is why I dismissed the feelings, but it really wasn't that. I just had no other frame of reference in which to understand how I felt. And of course, everyone must feel that way, right? If everyone feels that way, then you don't have to do anything about it. Deal with it. Everyone else is. Then you get to modern day, when hormones have died down (thank god) but now I'm smarter, wiser, more even-keeled and engaging in fierce logical debates in my head. What does that get me? Trying to dump all this off as some kind of internalized misandry...I shit you not. Misandry is definitely a thing, and I'm sure internalized misandry is a thing (or at least could be), but really? I haven't been able to kill that notion yet, and it scares me.

I'm going to start this off by saying that I think Hadley is maybe the same person I am except that we should change bodies. Like, seriously, you can have mine, it's got breasts and hips and everything.

:D I'm not sure whether I should be excited, or concerned that there's someone out there just as zany as me :P

Looking back, it seems so obvious, doesn't it? Something is painful, something is wrong, something is uncomfortable, or just plain unpleasant. And you can't do anything about it, you don't even really understand it. Duh, there would be coping mechanisms! There are for literally everything else. In fact, a fmaily member of mine did their PhD on coping mechanisms for learning in university through online courses. If there are coping mechanisms for something as simple as trying to learn material online instead of having someone to talk to in person, why is something like gender dysphoria so automatically excluded??

I think a large reason so many people don't realise they have coping mechanisms is that part of these coping mechanisms is to not think about it. Like, at all. Just never think about your gender. It's painful to think about, so just don't do it, right? At least, I think that was a huge obstacle for me.

I'm going to posit that the reason coping mechanisms are ignored or downplayed here is because the implications of removing them are potentially "severe". Remove the coping mechanisms of someone who doesn't want to learn material from a person, and the worst they'll need is maybe therapy. Remove the coping mechanisms of someone who's using them to defend against dysphoria, and it's going to take a bit more than therapy to make them right. Coping mechanisms aren't even inherently bad, not even in dysphoria's case. But when the results of those mechanisms start to impact your quality of life, then you've got problems.

So I stopped swimming. My sister went on to become a lifeguard, and I was at least as good as she, but now I can barely swim 100m IM, nonetheless the cool synchronized swimming tricks I used to be able to do before I was 12... I have lost so much :(

It stinks that things come to this *hugs*

In a similar vein, it's incredibly painful to look at the bigger picture of my life (especially the past decade), plot the trend, and see just how down it is.

TMI spoiler for genitals stuff

I don't know how much of a thing it is for people to notice a penis or testicles through pants. I mean, there's this old video of Led Zeppelin performing and Robert Plant has these super tight jeans on and, well, it doesn't leave much to the imagination, let's just say that.

For me though, if I could see it, or if I could tell it was making any visible indent on my pants, that was 1000% unacceptable. The reason? People would find out I was a boy. Even though there was no doubt anyway. That would surely give it away. (That was genuinely my thought process).

Is it odd that, once upon a time, I used to like tight pants, because it showed the tiniest of bulges and I was happy with that? Hint: not even female bodies are concave down there, there's still a convex curvature to the genital area. Just not dangley bits. So I could almost pretend to have barbie doll genitalia with tight pants, because there would be no dangley bits, but also no concavity.

...Why did I think women had concave genital areas? That literally makes no sense. Of course they don't. I had a female body (I have a female body I guess.... if I must...), and I didn't. So why would everyone other AFAB's genitals look concave? I actually have no idea why my 8 year old brain thought this way, but it did :P

If only you knew the amount of shit I took from my parents (especially my mom) for wearing pants that were 1) never jeans and 2) that were "too big" and "didn't show off the curves of my ass". Yes. My mom said that those words to me. Very recently, because of her prodding, I had started to wear a few pants that are much less baggy. Again though, if I see anything down there, or even feel anything pressing on fabric...ugh!

And, like Hadley, I was pretty certain on some powerful but irrational level that if I wanted it hard enough, I could avert puberty and twist it to my own ends. I think this belief might have been necessary for me to survive, since I still, long after puberty's done its work, haven't entirely let go of this idea and really want to think I succeeded if only a little. This also translated into some serious denial and had a strong influence on my presentation and drove me to various coping mechanisms (generally drawing self-portraits, thinking up and writing transformation stories, and playing videogames with gender-appropriate characters). I would've identified as trans since age twelve or so if I knew that it existed and wasn't just something done by homosexual male prostitutes and shady back-alley doctors like the media said. As it was, I was legitimately waiting for Ghost in the Shell technology so I could save up for a cyborg body that fit my self-image. That was my actual life plan, and I was fully willing to get into a major accident to necessitate it if that's what it took. I also had an alternative shadow plan that I won't discuss at length because... um...

I didn't ever seriously consider suicide, at least partially because my father kept talking to me about it and impressing on me not to, but you know how when dogs know they're dying, they crawl under something to hide and then wait?

I think you will succeed in your transformation. It may be a bit more mundane than you imagined, and involve a lot more help from the medical system than you thought, but I believe in you!!! In my mind, you already are that beautiful manga woman in your profile pic, so why not be a beautiful female body in real life too? If there's a will, there's a way :wub:

Kappamaki, I like your member title(?) of "Fledgling Witch". I think that's an adorable way to describe yourself. I remember being so pissed when I was a kid that "whaddya mean I can't be a witch for halloween? My sister can...and she doesn't even really want to!"

I remember being in 6th grade and they had us draw ourselves as we see ourselves now, how we want to be (5 years) in the future. I drew myself the exact same way in both images: Breastless with a neutral sporty shirt and pants.

You know, I have always thought the same thing. My ideal image of myself changes as my gender changes, but if I were ever to draw a self-portrait, I think it would be a picture of only my stomach. I have thought about this multiple times before. It would be me holding up my shirt (a loose shirt) just enough to reveal scars criss-crossing my stomach, over top of a strong, muscle-y physique. It would be not enough of my body to see the chest area, so you wouldn't know if I had breats or not. And my hips would be downplayed. And then, while one hand held up the shirt in that lop-sided way, the other would be holding a sword. Not in a threatening manner, but relaxed across the front in a diagonal, pointing down to the ground. There, but not threateningly. Just for confidence.

Interesting. I could never draw for shit, but weirdly, when I first started drawing people as a super little kid, I always drew them as a triangle with a head, arms, and legs. Like the "women" symbol on bathrooms basically. I drew everyone that way, including myself.

Weirdest part? That whole feeling? I balk at calling it dysphoria even now. Even though it sounds textbook to me. Not sure why.

Me too. I don't know why either.

Theory: Because the implications of calling it that, and it being that, suck.

Wow. Wall of text. :blink:

Sorry guys, but I guess I really needed to talk about dysphoria today :unsure:

A person after my own heart <3 Sometimes you gotta write and the spirit moves you. Happy to read what you wrote and talk about it :)

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Light02

I also always try to hide the straps of my bra because I don't want people to know I'm wearing one because, similarly to what Hadley said, I don't want them to find out that I'm a girl, even though everybody already knows. I'm going to bind at some point, for sure.

Besides that, I really hate make-up. I never wear it but when my best friend wants to give me a makeover I let her do it because I trust her and I feel like I can let her see me like that, even though I feel strange looking so feminine. It's when she makes me go out in public like that when it gets bad. I try to tell myself that nobody's looking, that people don't care since I look like every other girl but I still feel scared and anxious and I imagine everyone is thinking how feminine I look. If she doesn't come with me out in public right after she's given me a makeover I start rubbing it off with my hands while crying in the elevator. I've never worn high heels in my life but just the thought of me with high heels sounds so stupid and ridiculous and wrong. I can't even imagine wearing them in public. I would die of anxiety and trying to hide behind bushes, trees, everything. I also don't like skirts, they make me mildly uncomfortable but I looove dresses! I also like my long hair and I want it to be even longer, as long as possible, actually. I don't want to ever cut my hair short.

It's funny how some things trigger such dysphoria, while others are completely ok, eh? I LOVE my long hair too, I would never want to cut it off. Even in my most masculine of days; I imagine myself being happy with a super feminine hari style, the wavy hair-in-the-wind style on magazine covers, fluffy and silky and flamboyant. And flat chested and in a male body. But without a penis.

It's really odd how some things just do it, while others don't. Also, when in “woman mode” of my gender fluidity, I love dresses and skirts and chocolate and high heels. But I hate having to pull my shoulders back and look assertive, as I often have to do in my job when doing things like presentations. I hate knowing that I have to come off as confident to win over others and convince them that I know what I'm doing. Whereas, nothing pleases me more than that when in “man mode”.

It really seems so arbitrary sometimes what triggers dysphoria and what doesn't. It's a lot of work to try and figure out what those things are sometimes. At least for me.

Wow, you just described exactly the way I imagine myself!

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Light02

I just thought of some silly (or sad, depending on how you look at it) things that I thought or did as a child:

1) I wore my dad's shoes around the house all the time.

2) When I first saw a sex-change commercial I got so excited and I thought, "So I can be a boy and then change back to girl whenever I feel like it? Awesome!" and then I asked my mom if I can be a boy.

3) I hated Mulan because at the end she goes back to being a girl and I was really disappointed at her. I thought, "Why doesn't this movie have a happy ending? That sucks!" and I also got very mad at the guy that found out she's female. I thought, "But they only found out she has boobs. Does that necessarily mean she's a woman?". That whole movie and that freaking song "My Reflection" just made me so angry.

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Kappamaki

I think you will succeed in your transformation. It may be a bit more mundane than you imagined, and involve a lot more help from the medical system than you thought, but I believe in you!!! In my mind, you already are that beautiful manga woman in your profile pic, so why not be a beautiful female body in real life too? If there's a will, there's a way :wub:

...

It really seems so arbitrary sometimes what triggers dysphoria and what doesn't. It's a lot of work to try and figure out what those things are sometimes. At least for me.

He he he. What would a discussion of dysphoria be without accidentally triggering a little of it?

So, the phrase "beautiful woman" really did a number on me just now - I mean, yeah, I think of myself that way too and have that self-image but those words, while technically correct, are totally wrong in that way dysphoria makes things wrong - and I thought about it some and I think I have some idea of why that's such a loaded term for me.

"Beautiful woman" to me carries connotations of sexuality, both as a sexual agent and a sexual object. It shouldn't, but it does (thanks compulsory sexuality culture). Here's a slightly different dysphoria than gender for you - the social dysphoria one gets when assumed to be of a sexuality they are not, likely common to all aces. For me, this is tied with my sex repulsion, and although I'm not exactly sure how, I'm certain these feelings are heavily tied in with my agenderism. And my identity as a kid or young adult but somehow not just 'adult'. So for some nebulous reason, "woman," especially if built on with "beautiful," triggers all this yuckiness combined with an honest fully-blushing appreciation of the intent of the phrase (thank you!). Generally, "girl" is better for me, at least right now, which is why I'm definitely demigirl and not demiwoman.

And as for being a body... um, slightly awkward phrasing there. One of my coping mechanisms was a strong adherence to Cartesian dualism and privilege of the mind over the body. I couldn't identify with my body at all, so describing me as a body is, while scientifically accurate, kind of difficult to deal with. I'd rather think of myself as the result of part of that meat somehow being able to think. I've grown more attached to my body since figuring out my gender, and maybe part of transition for me will be reconnecting to it more fully.

As for how transition's going, it's great! It's basically involved a bunch of daily pill-taking and weekly face-stabbing sessions and working through medical and governmental bureaucracy. Sure, magic would be better, and I still would have preferred my original plan of believing in myself really hard, but this stuff actually works, and I'm pretty sure HRT is magic. I get read correctly on occasion even when I just wear a shirt and shorts, so I'm confident this'll be good, or at least far, far better than my last puberty. (Still nervous about possibly larger breasts than I'd like, since I've gotten so used to think of myself as smaller on that front - ooh, look, a pun - but that's unlikely, and also if I get to a point where that's a potential issue, I can renegotiate my HRT regimen to include an SERM.)

Then you get to modern day, when hormones have died down (thank god) but now I'm smarter, wiser, more even-keeled and engaging in fierce logical debates in my head. What does that get me? Trying to dump all this off as some kind of internalized misandry...I shit you not. Misandry is definitely a thing, and I'm sure internalized misandry is a thing (or at least could be), but really? I haven't been able to kill that notion yet, and it scares me.

...

Kappamaki, I like your member title(?) of "Fledgling Witch". I think that's an adorable way to describe yourself. I remember being so pissed when I was a kid that "whaddya mean I can't be a witch for halloween? My sister can...and she doesn't even really want to!"

At least for me, there's no freaking way internalized subconscious misandry could be bigger than internalized misogyny and transphobia combined. That thought shut the inside-the-head misandry argument right up. Not sure if it'll work that way with you.

As for my member title, I KNOW, RIGHT!? It's the most adorable thing ever! Also, witchcraft is tied to so many positive things in my mind, from fantasy literature to magical thinking used as coping mechanisms to magical girls to queerness to oversized hats to autumn to self-reliance and doing the impossible! Also, Little Witch Academia finally got a second episode coming out this autumn and Studio Trigger needs to make this a full-length anime and here's the first one.

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butterflydreams

Kappamaki, I'm so glad to hear that your transition is going well!

Then you get to modern day, when hormones have died down (thank god) but now I'm smarter, wiser, more even-keeled and engaging in fierce logical debates in my head. What does that get me? Trying to dump all this off as some kind of internalized misandry...I shit you not. Misandry is definitely a thing, and I'm sure internalized misandry is a thing (or at least could be), but really? I haven't been able to kill that notion yet, and it scares me.

...

Kappamaki, I like your member title(?) of "Fledgling Witch". I think that's an adorable way to describe yourself. I remember being so pissed when I was a kid that "whaddya mean I can't be a witch for halloween? My sister can...and she doesn't even really want to!"

At least for me, there's no freaking way internalized subconscious misandry could be bigger than internalized misogyny and transphobia combined. That thought shut the inside-the-head misandry argument right up. Not sure if it'll work that way with you.

As for my member title, I KNOW, RIGHT!? It's the most adorable thing ever! Also, witchcraft is tied to so many positive things in my mind, from fantasy literature to magical thinking used as coping mechanisms to magical girls to queerness to oversized hats to autumn to self-reliance and doing the impossible! Also, Little Witch Academia finally got a second episode coming out this autumn and Studio Trigger needs to make this a full-length anime and here's the first one.

I think for me, there's a deep feeling of, "you're supposed to be a dude. What would your mom say? You only want this because you suck at being a dude. Man up and get on with your life." And yeah, let's throw in tons of "transgender is a bunch of BS upper-middle class teenagers subscribe to. It's not real. You were born poor, you'll die poor. Being able to transition, think about gender...that's not meant for you." Eep...where did all that come from? I know I've got the *Bostonize* wicked internalized transphobia */Bostonize*. I'm trying to resolve that with consistent pressure and visions of future happiness. It's a slow process. Everything else? Yeah, there's just a little bit of class struggle in there isn't there? Maybe it's not internalized misandry. Oof, that would be a load off my mind.

Ahhhh! <3 Shhh, you! You're bringing up all the old memories I used to have about witches and thinking I could use that magic power for some kind of transformation ;)

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littlepersonparadox

Kappamaki, I'm so glad to hear that your transition is going well!

Then you get to modern day, when hormones have died down (thank god) but now I'm smarter, wiser, more even-keeled and engaging in fierce logical debates in my head. What does that get me? Trying to dump all this off as some kind of internalized misandry...I shit you not. Misandry is definitely a thing, and I'm sure internalized misandry is a thing (or at least could be), but really? I haven't been able to kill that notion yet, and it scares me.

...

Kappamaki, I like your member title(?) of "Fledgling Witch". I think that's an adorable way to describe yourself. I remember being so pissed when I was a kid that "whaddya mean I can't be a witch for halloween? My sister can...and she doesn't even really want to!"

At least for me, there's no freaking way internalized subconscious misandry could be bigger than internalized misogyny and transphobia combined. That thought shut the inside-the-head misandry argument right up. Not sure if it'll work that way with you.

As for my member title, I KNOW, RIGHT!? It's the most adorable thing ever! Also, witchcraft is tied to so many positive things in my mind, from fantasy literature to magical thinking used as coping mechanisms to magical girls to queerness to oversized hats to autumn to self-reliance and doing the impossible! Also, Little Witch Academia finally got a second episode coming out this autumn and Studio Trigger needs to make this a full-length anime and here's the first one.

I think for me, there's a deep feeling of, "you're supposed to be a dude. What would your mom say? You only want this because you suck at being a dude. Man up and get on with your life." And yeah, let's throw in tons of "transgender is a bunch of BS upper-middle class teenagers subscribe to. It's not real. You were born poor, you'll die poor. Being able to transition, think about gender...that's not meant for you." Eep...where did all that come from? I know I've got the *Bostonize* wicked internalized transphobia */Bostonize*. I'm trying to resolve that with consistent pressure and visions of future happiness. It's a slow process. Everything else? Yeah, there's just a little bit of class struggle in there isn't there? Maybe it's not internalized misandry. Oof, that would be a load off my mind.

Ahhhh! <3 Shhh, you! You're bringing up all the old memories I used to have about witches and thinking I could use that magic power for some kind of transformation ;)

Sigh - the masculinity box strikes again. It has the power to make everyone miserable - and that's its only ability.I swear that line "Be a real man" is contender for #1 most carp thing i've ever heard. Also frankly as a middle class person i find when i'm with all my other trans friends i think i'm the only middle class one there. Most are lower classes if that make sense. So ... no class has absolutely nothing to do with it but given the media will cater to those who are not intersectional at ALL i can see where that gross misconception comes from.

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House of Chimeras

Over half of our multiple system experiences various forms of dysphoria related to our gender in how our body is and how others perceive us. A fair chuck of our system have dysphoria related to our body and how others perceive in general and not strictly to gender (how the face looks, how tall our body is, etc), and a majority of us experience dysphoria related to how our species identity doesn’t match the body.

Over the past half decade we’ve been having to seeing two different therapists off and on try to cope with dysphoria in some way. Sadly, nothing can be done with our dysphoria because nothing can be altered with our body without likely causing dysphoria for another headmate (or alter, if you prefer the official term).

While neither us nor our therapist are happy with the situation, the way our brain has ended up coping with these issues is to dissociate even more than our multiplicity naturally causes us. To take the edge off of our dysphoria and to keep us as numb to as possible. Most of the time, we aren’t even aware of our body at all, or feel anything about the proportions or traits of our body. Our mind completely wipes our awareness clean of it. Throughout daily life we move about unaware and disconnected (or “tuning out”) from our body. We deal with regular “out-of-body experiences” and other forms of depersonalization of feeling removed and just “watching“ our body as well. When we look into mirrors, we don’t automatically see what’s actually there, we actually usually a hallucination of what we think we should see, and we have too look a little deeper to see what’s actually there. Our mind even often blocks out people saying our body's given name. Our brain just doesn't a number of weird little things to block out whatever might cause too much hits of dysphoria.

Some days are better than others. Sometimes our dissociation makes our dysphoria livable, but other days our dissociation wanes and our dysphoria reeks havoc. We’re currently trying to brainstorm with our therapist with perhaps a more healthy means surviving, but right now no one is quite sure what to do. Our therapist has even considered our current situation might even be the best possible situation given the limited options. Our dissociation is on a level that is above normal, it isn’t as extreme as dissociation can be and it doesn‘t hinder our ability to function as much as it could. So that is the situation we are in currently. Our therapist scratching her head on what the might means of handle our situation might be, and us just going on day to day.

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Aworld

I've never really talked about this, not even much here on AVEN, but here I go...

In terms of physical dysphoria, I'm okay with having breasts because they're not very big or noticeable, so I can deal with it. I remember back when I was 12 and my mum told me that I would need to buy a bra for the first time, I was disgusted and terrified because I thought this meant they'd grow big or something, I don't know. I thought it was normal to feel that way but when I asked my friends then they said none of them felt like that. I didn't know why I felt that way at the time, in fact that was probably the first time I started thinking, "What if I'm not actually a girl?" and I was so terrified of what people would think if they knew that, so I stuffed it deep down inside of me. I also don't like the idea of having a uterus or whatever inside of me, it just feels wrong.

I also just can't stand wearing make up and high heels, it makes me feel sick. I can deal with dresses and skirts and I actually really like jewellery, but make up and heels for some reason, no way... It makes my mum really mad because she expected me to be "girly" like her, rather than a "tomboy" (as she calls me). But every time I dress up feminine on the outside it just feels so fake, like I'm not being myself.

Most of the time I don't really care what gender people see me as. If they see me as a girl, fine. Boy, fine. Neither, fine. What I have a problem with is when people tell me that I'm being a girl "wrong", that I should dress and act a different way in order to be more like a girl (I have never been told to be more like a boy). Like my parents telling me to wear more feminine clothing, or sit more "ladylike". It makes me feel constricted and sometimes even gives me bad anxiety.

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chair jockey

The term "dysphoria" refers to something much more general than gender issues, although it includes some gender issues, so the title of this thread is exactly the opposite of what the thread is about. I was excited by the title because I thought that different types of dysphoria would be discussed, but instead the discussion attempts to create the false impression that gender dysphoria is the only kind of dysphoria there is. That's a purely political, anti-informative move and is related to the reasons I had so much conflict with other AVEN members back in 2010. I really thought things had changed.

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knout

The term "dysphoria" refers to something much more general than gender issues, although it includes some gender issues, so the title of this thread is exactly the opposite of what the thread is about. I was excited by the title because I thought that different types of dysphoria would be discussed, but instead the discussion attempts to create the false impression that gender dysphoria is the only kind of dysphoria there is. That's a purely political, anti-informative move and is related to the reasons I had so much conflict with other AVEN members back in 2010. I really thought things had changed.

While I agree that dysphoria applies to a lot more things. you're in the "Gender discussion" subforum so it seems accurate that this actually refers to gender-related dysphorias

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Heart

Hug. It happens. Sometimes we need to just vent.

Is anyone else here now seeing heart as some Androgynous/neutrois Adonis?

I admit that I had to look up Adonis, my Greek mythology is rusty. But I love it! The whole resurrection theme, and the polyamory! I'm in :)

3) I hated Mulan because at the end she goes back to being a girl and I was really disappointed at her. I thought, "Why doesn't this movie have a happy ending? That sucks!" and I also got very mad at the guy that found out she's female. I thought, "But they only found out she has boobs. Does that necessarily mean she's a woman?". That whole movie and that freaking song "My Reflection" just made me so angry.

The genderfluid in my LOVED Mulan. It's still one of my favourite movies. She can become a he, and then go back again, and then back again (in the sequel), and then kinda just hang out in the middle?? HECK YES! And the reflection song... speaks to me in my most dysphoric states, I must say. Mirrors and I can have a complicated relationship sometimes.

So, the phrase "beautiful woman" really did a number on me just now - I mean, yeah, I think of myself that way too and have that self-image but those words, while technically correct, are totally wrong in that way dysphoria makes things wrong - and I thought about it some and I think I have some idea of why that's such a loaded term for me.

As for how transition's going, it's great! It's basically involved a bunch of daily pill-taking and weekly face-stabbing sessions and working through medical and governmental bureaucracy. Sure, magic would be better, and I still would have preferred my original plan of believing in myself really hard, but this stuff actually works, and I'm pretty sure HRT is magic. I get read correctly on occasion even when I just wear a shirt and shorts, so I'm confident this'll be good, or at least far, far better than my last puberty. (Still nervous about possibly larger breasts than I'd like, since I've gotten so used to think of myself as smaller on that front - ooh, look, a pun - but that's unlikely, and also if I get to a point where that's a potential issue, I can renegotiate my HRT regimen to include an SERM.)

I'm so sorry Kappamaki. I knew this about you too, I knew you preferred girl, I just wasn't thinking very much when using that phrase. I hope I can exchange internet :cake: and hugs for the accident... *hugs*

I'm happy to hear about your transition though :D I'm particularly interested in partial and non binary transitions. As genderfluid, I hit up against much the same obstacles as Chimera, where I think any transition I do will be objectionable to one or more of my gender swings... it feels like a losing battle, and I can't transition fast enough to satisfy my gender swings, so why even try? And then I remember that non binary transitions exist, and maybe there's a “lesser of all evils” golden mean somewhere? One can hope at least... and just keep brainstorming about where that might be.

The term "dysphoria" refers to something much more general than gender issues, although it includes some gender issues, so the title of this thread is exactly the opposite of what the thread is about. I was excited by the title because I thought that different types of dysphoria would be discussed, but instead the discussion attempts to create the false impression that gender dysphoria is the only kind of dysphoria there is. That's a purely political, anti-informative move and is related to the reasons I had so much conflict with other AVEN members back in 2010. I really thought things had changed.

I'm sorry to hear that you're disappointed in(k)onstant. But honestly, I think that many experiences of dysphoria, be they gender related or not, have much in common. If you feel like sharing your experiences, I am sure there are others here who would feel kindred in that respect. After all, we already have one mention of species dysphoria, which is not necessarily related at all to gender dysphoria, and yet is relevant in a way. I think that gender may be the over-arching theme, considering the forum, but that doesn't mean that small tangents aren't welcome :)

Edited by Heart

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Wayfarer

I guess the first thing I'd want to tell people about dysphoria that I've seen very infrequently elsewhere is coping mechanisms. They are very real, and they're also a very natural response to discomfort. In my case, they were so natural, and so gradual, it kind of had the effect of finally "waking up" one day, looking back on my life, seeing the decline and thinking, "what the hell have I done?"

I can't even get over what a natural response it is. It's insidious!

Looking back, it seems so obvious, doesn't it? Something is painful, something is wrong, something is uncomfortable, or just plain unpleasant. And you can't do anything about it, you don't even really understand it. Duh, there would be coping mechanisms! There are for literally everything else. In fact, a fmaily member of mine did their PhD on coping mechanisms for learning in university through online courses. If there are coping mechanisms for something as simple as trying to learn material online instead of having someone to talk to in person, why is something like gender dysphoria so automatically excluded??

I think a large reason so many people don't realise they have coping mechanisms is that part of these coping mechanisms is to not think about it. Like, at all. Just never think about your gender. It's painful to think about, so just don't do it, right? At least, I think that was a huge obstacle for me.

I have the same. I try not to think about my being in a body of this shape. I have days on which it is easier than others, but on the hard days I plan everything around not having to notice the things I don't want to see. It wasn't until recently that I noticed how extreme I was doing it.

So with all these things that happened to me, or that I experienced, the recurring theme is coping. Something hurts? Damage control. Cauterize it. Amputate it. Shut it down. Turn it off.

This, just finding a way to manage it. If that means ignoring, then that's the thing to do, no doubts about that.

Oddly enough, I have never really had the transformation fantasies, outside of wanting to be a horse. But even that's not that strong. My biggest fantasies have always been to fly. 100% if you asked me what super power I want, it would be to float and fly. Though now that I think about it, somehow that power has to come with the compulsory insubstantiality. I have to be insubstantial, my body can't be fully solid... kinda whispy. And, gender-neutral. Didn't you know? You can only fly if you have a gender neutral body. No genitals or breasts allowed when flying. Duh.

(Bold emphasis mine)

This as well. I often fly in dreams, and when I do, I'm always completely 'neutral'. No breasts, nothing 'down there', and some kind of insubstantial feel to it as well. For some reason, I always wear long robes made of a thin wispy material as well, it just seems a necessary part of the concept.

Dreams have always been the place where I can be what I want to be. In my dreams I look the way I wish I could look in every day. Before hitting puberty, I used to be tiny. I was small, thin, kind of stick-like. During puberty, when my body gained the shape it has now, I pretended not to notice and hoped that if I was convinced this wasn't happening to me, at the end of my growing, I'd be a 'normal' shape again. Unfortunately for me, that's not how hormones work. Happily for me, I often dream (and remember my dreams), so can enjoy being 'myself' there. Here myself is a 'neutral' body, kind of the same idea as I used to be when younger, but then grown along with my age. For some reason, I'm usually wearing a tunic with leggings underneath. Not the modern style, but more like Disney's Peter Pan or Robin Hood. The length of the tunic varies, but never bothers me. Rarely, I'll be wearing a floor-length gown (still in neutral body though) or long robes (for flying).

My dysphoria comes in waves, sometimes it's worse than at other times. Today it's very light, so it's harder to describe, but I'll give it a try.

It's mostly physical: I have trouble with the body I'm in. As I said earlier, usually I can think around it or avoid it. I sometimes wear a binder if it gets too bad, which can help.

I also have a little social dysphoria: I can't really cope with people seeing me as female. It's mostly to do with stereotypes and what people think of me. To manage this I try to get people to see me as I am, not as they see me. The people who don't see this, are not worth my time, or so I tell myself.

I find this hard to describe, especially as I usually cope by thinking of other things, I seldom try to identify exactly what the problem is, and I've become quite adept at not being able to think of things that cause considerable discomfort.

That said, I really like the idea of this thread, it's quite interesting to read.

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Kappamaki

I'm so sorry Kappamaki. I knew this about you too, I knew you preferred girl, I just wasn't thinking very much when using that phrase. I hope I can exchange internet :cake: and hugs for the accident... *hugs*

All's good! ^_^

The term "dysphoria" refers to something much more general than gender issues, although it includes some gender issues, so the title of this thread is exactly the opposite of what the thread is about. I was excited by the title because I thought that different types of dysphoria would be discussed, but instead the discussion attempts to create the false impression that gender dysphoria is the only kind of dysphoria there is. That's a purely political, anti-informative move and is related to the reasons I had so much conflict with other AVEN members back in 2010. I really thought things had changed.

Okay, so this is a thread inside the Gender Forum, so if you want people to not talk about gender, you're probably in the wrong place. The title of "Different Dysphorias" was meant to emphasize that gender dysphoria is varied and diverse and that a lot of people present and privilege certain narratives of gender dysphoria while excluding others to the extent that it often seems as if there's only one kind of gender dysphoria. Of course, if people want to talk about non-gender-based dysphoria, that's cool, too!

That said, several other types of dysphoria have been mentioned in this thread. I myself mentioned a sexuality-based social dysphoria that I suspect you missed. This is similar to social gender dysphoria in that it's triggered by people assuming you're something you're not and behaving toward you based on that misconception, and in that it results in similar feelings - wrongness, invisibility, falseness - and in that, when pushed at you by almost everyone you meet in society, it can bring you to despair. This happens to me with people who don't know I'm ace and those who don't believe me when I tell them: everything's fine, and then someone'll make a comment that shows they think of me as a very different person than I am, and they assume I'm attracted to a certain kind of person and that this attraction is sexual in nature. It feels icky and gross and I'm not okay with other people thinking about me in that way, as if I were a sexual agent.

If you think the conversation's not going the way you'd like, why don't you contribute? You know, in a productive way, rather than just telling the trans people to be silent and shaming us for vocalizing our experiences? We get enough of that already.

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Anthracite_Impreza

I hate, hate, hate my hanging mammary glands, I just wish I can get rid of them and I don't know if I'll be able to cope with them for the rest of my life :( They're not huge or anything (I've been called flat-chested before, as an insult, lol) but I know they're there, and I know they're never going to go away without a knife. Doesn't matter whether they're bound or free, they just make me cry sometimes... To a lesser degree I hate the fact I have a female shape, but save crushing my hips inwards I don't think that's ever gonna go away (and I'm not desperate enough for bone breaking) :( I don't have a problem with my downstairs because it's pretty neutral already; I pee through it and that's that.

I don't have a huge problem with mis-gendering, I can live with it. I haven't really come out so I can't diss people for assuming. I do dislike being called lady or woman though, female or just person will do fine! Someone at work recently said "Thanks mate, I mean, love", "correcting" himself rather sheepishly, and I just replied rather hastily "I prefer mate actually!". He just said "Oh right" and we went on our business. Sometimes I do just want to scream, "please just use neutral or masculine phrases, I prefer them!", but then I crawl back in my hole feeling like an unjust special snowflake...

I don't really have mental dysphoria, not related to my gender at least (I seem to have a more "male" brain). I'm only annoyed at certain aspects of my mental health that get in the way of things, and complete failure in social interaction >.<

I deal with it in the same way I deal with everything else, fantasy. I daydream or otherwise distract myself whenever I can (usually with tinterwebz), which isn't a healthy coping mechanism but neh. If I'm really low in future I'm going to start talking to my mate again (I came out to her recently, it felt good to unbottle all the feels), but I don't want to bother them too much. Other than that I just wear neutral or masculine clothes; I refuse to wear a skirt, dress or bra, won't wear jewellry or make-up. I'd wear a kilt though, that's a dream one day :P

I must leave it there, it's a ridiculous hour and I'm knackered!

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nerdperson777

Another awesome thread by Heart! :D Great discussions time!

I spent a lot of my child confused. I knew there were things I didn't like, but no one to discuss them with. And with everything else I learned, even if I didn't like it, I have to do it anyway. I only knew of one girl in middle school that was similar to me. But I was never one to express myself so I didn't know she didn't like it like I did. This year I found out that she identifies as androgynous and likes to use they pronouns. But lack of resources didn't let me know that being trans* was a thing. I didn't want to be a full on male that grows up to have excessive body hair and a beard. It would be nice to get some of that height though. Hair, I thought prickles felt awesome. Whenever my hairdresser used a razor on the lower back part of my head, I'd be touching that for a few days until it grew too long to get the same feeling. I was also afraid to be different. I just tolerated everything, thinking that what I thought about something didn't matter. If it's just me that feels these things, then there's no point trying to make others accommodate me. And over time I'd get used to it because nothing will change. But now I know more.

My body dysphoria is one of my main things that I don't like. I liked my pre-puberty body. Nothing to worry about. Then puberty had to happen. We had a talk about it in my 5th grade class and I didn't really enjoy it. I thought the boys' side would've been way more fun, but of course, I wouldn't be allowed in there. I hate both the top and bottom of my body. My top is pretty small so I can deal with it. But my lower part, I don't want anything to happen there except peeing. I don't need a penis. But if I was born with a male body, I'll just live with it. No sense in getting rid of it then is my thought. I have an aunt who looks like a guy. I wanted to be just like her. She's so flat and I was hoping that there was a flat gene in the family. I still got my mom's size though. They're not very big. If I was wearing a bra and actually stood up straight, people would notice them. I spent so much time not admitting that I slouched because I didn't like having them. I was always told this Chinese phrase that basically translates to "Make your breast/chest prominent." I detested that phrase so much. I didn't even start wearing a bra until my mom's conservative friend said that I had to. I'm not sure why she was up in my business on whether I wore a bra or not. And when asked to get some Asian undershirts that I like wearing from China while she was on a trip there, she got me the girl tank top kind. She took it upon herself to get me the feminine kind. And I would never wear a tank top (except this kind because they were "meant" for me, I already stopped wearing them). But bras were uncomfortable for me. I was always pulling them down because they didn't feel like full shirts. I also didn't like them sticking and making imprints on my skin. And I think lower body stuff is always triggering, at least to me so I'll put that in a spoiler. (Actually it looks more like a rant now so totally skippable if wanted.)

Periods cause me so much stress. I hate them with a passion. I never actually told my mom when I started having it. In fact, I tried to hide it. But her mother instinct knew. I stuck a pair of wet underwear at the bottom of the laundry pile, which she just "happened" to feel when picking up the laundry. Then she taught me how to use a pad. I was hoping to forget it and not have to do anything like it again. But no. I felt cheated when 3 weeks after my last day the previous month, it happened again. I did not know that it depended on the start day, not the end day. I'm so dysphoric about them that I rather not see a pad until I actually have to use it. Which means I am not going to provide myself "insurance" even when the date comes near. I have major anxiety issues but my dysphoria overrides them. I'm normally a very careful person and take extra precautions for everything. But this, not a chance. And when it comes to washing underwear, I procrastinate on it real hard. I do not care if it's stained. In fact, I rather throw them out because I don't clean them fully. It took me a while, but now I know why I have this negative feeling when my dirty underwear is shoved in my face (no not literally). Since my mom does a lot of things for me, she previously had cleaned my underwear for me just to show me how to do it. So when I know I have stained something, I spray it with a stain cleaner and leave it there for a bit. Sometimes I come back to the bathroom just to find my underwear on my sink. I never told my mom about how much dysphoria that causes me. I'm a boy. A messy unhygienic one. I don't want to clean this. This is an awful process that needs to die. I don't want to deal with it. Random body oozing. Anxiety of knowing it's soon but exactly when? What if there's a mess in my pants and I can't see it but others can? And the swimming thing, there was the 9th grade swim unit in PE, I told people that I forgot my swimsuit for the entire week instead. I like being in the water though. It proved that I wasn't bleeding at the time and that itself made me feel masculine.

Even when I still identified as a girl, I didn't like being clumped up with them. I knew I was not "one of the girls". In fact, I went to the online gaming world to be "one of the guys". But I didn't know that that's what I really wanted to be. And accepting things I can't change are a theme with me. I'm fortunate that my body didn't develop drastically. But when I was younger, I did think that if I believed that I was a boy, it would happen. One day I'll wake up and become what I wanted to be. But I know some others aren't as fortunate to say that if they believed they could be. In my transformation fantasy, it was more like Danny Phantom. :rolleyes: I'd close my eyes and "goin' ghost" or goin' boy/male whatever. Over the years, I knew my dreams were never going to be reality so I gave up on it until I started getting into gender stuff last year.

3) I hated Mulan because at the end she goes back to being a girl and I was really disappointed at her. I thought, "Why doesn't this movie have a happy ending? That sucks!" and I also got very mad at the guy that found out she's female. I thought, "But they only found out she has boobs. Does that necessarily mean she's a woman?". That whole movie and that freaking song "My Reflection" just made me so angry.

As I was fine with being a girl at the time, I really liked Mulan. I liked the idea of impersonating a man and being treated as one. The wearing dresses and finding a man that way, not as much. I'd be happy if I could wear those army robes. Disney logic of boobs. They are there when they are significant to the story, not when it isn't. She's absolutely flat when she walks into the camp and wearing the robe. And totally ace moment, when she's bathing in the lake, I didn't think about the guys discovering she had boobs, just maybe her curvy shape with absolutely no body hair. I only recently found out that trans* people see "My Reflection" as a song that describes how they feel.

Oh this is long, didn't realize.

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