When, Why & How to Tell Him That You're a Transsexual.
Should you tell your man that you're actually a transsexual? Are there any problems likely to occur if you don't tell him?
If you do tell him, when should you reveal the secret? How should you reveal it, and where?
I'm an over-50 TS woman who had gender reassignment surgery in 2003. I'm aware that there's a great deal of debate on this subject, so I thought I'd pass along my thoughts and experience on the subject.
"If I tell him," some believe, "he'll reject me. Maybe I don't have to tell him at all. Maybe I won't lose him if I get a relationship established first."
I think that's the thing people who don't reveal the truth are thinking about. She's thinking, I can get him to love me for the person I am, so if I tell him down the road, it's not going to make any difference." But it does make a difference. He thinks you're a genetic woman, he likely has no idea at all that you had been a male, that your vagina was made by a doctor.
It's a big risk to
think that this won't make a difference to him.
The problem with not telling him you're a transsexual
Despite what people think, love does not conquer all. On the TS's side of the problem, not owning up to the fact that you're a TS is not good for you, either. Why would you want to spend six months, a year or longer in a relationship while holding this inside? I know, it's hard, I've done it. Why carry this burden around? You will live in terror of making a mistake. You will always have this worry in the back of your mind: "I can't slip up."
I understand why a transsexual woman would be afraid to tell him. I think we need to keep her fears in mind as you're reading this article, because she doesn't know how this guy is going to react, especially if she is new at this, and she wants to be accepted. Probably, she wants a man, and if she fails with this one, and the next one, and even the next one, she can get discouraged. You have to be sympathetic to her when she thinks, "Maybe I can pull this off and I won't have to tell him."
One of the very first
things you need to be concerned about is trust. If you decided not to
tell the guy early on in the relationship that you're a TS, and this assumes
you really want a relationship, then he's going to wonder, "Well,
what else did she forget to tell me? What else is she purposely not telling
me? If she did it now, will she do it in the future? Can I trust her to
tell me the truth?"
The inevitable slip-up
At some point down the road, and as those of us who haven't told someone the whole truth about something we have done, she will slip up, she will make that mistake. She's going to say something, and the guy is going to go, "Huh? That doesn't make any sense."
I made such a mistake with my boyfriend's mother, whom I have known for years. I had had a drink or two, I was tired, and we were talking about a baseball game I attended when I was a kid. I mentioned being invited into the club house, along with my father, after the game. "Imagine that!" I said. "A seven-year-old boy, getting invited into the club house!"
His mother didn't say anything but she visibly reacted, as if to say, "What did she say?" (Yes, we talked and I explained things. We still get along great.)
(Editor's note: "Nikki's" boyfriend ended this seven-year-long relationship in November, 2008. What she said above about "still" getting along great with his mother is past tense.)
When you're very relaxed
and comfortable, you let your guard down. Same with when you are tired
or have had a couple of drinks or smoked some weed. You can easily lose
control. Do you really want to go through life worrying about this? Do
you want to carry that burden?
How he might react to the news you're a TS
I believe she's really better off telling him early on. There is potentially a lot of danger in telling him later. If you tell him later, he's going to feel crushed. He's going to feel lied to, taken advantage of, used. She's got to remember all these things down the road. Then she has to keep track of who knows what about her.
On a worst-case basis, the guy becomes violent. Or maybe he gets up and walks out of the room. Maybe he'll be understanding. "Yeah, she lied to me. It's an error of omission. She just didn't tell me. Can I understand? Do I still love her?"
The absolute worst thing is that he becomes violent. How do you prevent that, or minimize it as much as possible? Think about his personality. Is he an angry person, unhappy, or does he like to be totally in control? Is he homophobic? Listen to what he says about how he reacts to stressful situations in his life.
Look for signs and
think about how you feel he will react. Use your best judgment. Where
do you tell him? Obviously, not at night in a car parked on a lonely stretch
of road. You need privacy, of course, but try to leave yourself a way
to escape, or have people nearby so you can yell for help. I don't want
to scare you here, but we all know there are violent people in the world,
so just be careful!
How to tell him you're a transsexual
We all have our ways of approaching the subject.
"I have gender identity disorder," is how I prefer to explain. It's a medical explanation rather than a simple admission that I'm a transsexual. "There is only one accepted cure for GID, and that's gender reassignment surgery. I changed my body to match how I felt in my mind, emotionally and in my soul.
When you're talking to the guy, explain Gender Identity Disorder, explain what that is. But tell him that there is only one cure for that: Surgery, because you were a woman born in a man's body. It was a biological mistake, not an emotional or psychological mistake, it was just a physical mistake. And tell him that you took action to correct this mistake by nature through surgery.
In a nutshell: You didn't change your sex, because sex is not determined by what is between your legs! You changed your physical appearance to match the gender into which you were born. The body just didn't get the message in the womb, for whatever reason.
If you're a pre-op
transsexual, explain that you plan to have the surgery so your body matches
how you feel inside.
When to tell him you're a transsexual
Since the odds against him accepting you are HUGE, I think you're better off telling him as soon as you feel comfortable doing so.
By "When you feel comfortable telling him," I mean when you sense, when you feel there is a bonding, when you think this thing might turn into a relationship. When he's demonstrating that he likes you a lot, when he thinks there could be a future -- and you're going to feel it too -- you'd better tell him then. He's not going to like it if you wait six months, or a year, or two years or eight years before you tell him a very important thing about you, that you were not born as a female.
That you are a woman born in a male body is a concept that is not easily understood (much less accepted) by men, or genetic women, for that matter.
Wouldn't you rather
find a guy who knows, up front (or very early on), that you're a transsexual,
and is understanding of that fact? He sees the woman that you are, he
knows your body as female, even if it didn't start out that way. He already
accepts you as a woman. If he's accepting, then you know you have a pretty
special guy there.
Your investment in time and emotions
What is the worst thing that can happen if you tell him early? He splits -- and hopefully he doesn't become violent. He may say something to you that's nasty, but the earlier you bring it up, the less he's going to be hurt. And actually, the same applies to you. When you start a relationship, you start investing in this other person. Yes, you're investing emotion and time -- and this is pretty natural between men and women, obviously -- you begin to ask yourself, is this someone I could spend a lot of time with? Six months? Maybe a year? Or a lifetime?
Why do that with someone who may split on you once you reveal the truth about your past? You are going to hurt. And then you're going to have to start all over again.
So the sooner you tell him, the less emotional investment you have in the relationship, and the less you will hurt if he walks away. He will hurt less, too. And this will reduce the likelihood of a nasty reaction, or worse.
If you need to start
over, don't think there aren't any men who don't want a transsexual. They
are out there. I know that from personal experience.
The loss of trust: It's like having an affair
You really don't want to betray someone's trust. It's like having an affair, in a way. If you confess to it or get caught, even if your relationship survives the affair, you will never, never, never regain that level of trust you had before the truth came out. Even if you are extremely apologetic, "I was stupid, I screwed up, I'm sorry, it will never happen again," in the back of his mind, he's thinking, "She deceived me once, is she ever going to do it again? Has she done that before?" No matter what you may do to try to fix things, somewhere in the back of his mind he is going to remember you had that affair and he's never again going to be 100% comfortable with you again.
So you love this guy,
and he loves you. Let's say you're two years into the relationship before
you tell him that you're TS. Even if he can accept that, you have damaged
his trust in you. It's going to come up again, whenever he wonders about
the truth of something you've said. How many times do you want the matter
of your having deceived him over the GID issue thrown back into your face
by the man you love more than anyone else in the world?
Is not telling him early on worth the price?
I can't think of any advantage in not telling him. Where is the advantage?
If you slip up and reveal the truth to your man -- like I did with my boyfriend's mom, "…A seven-year-old boy," he may react immediately. Maybe he won't react right away. If he didn't hear you, consider yourself to be very lucky. Or maybe he heard you and it didn't register right away. Six weeks might go by before it dawns on him.
I'm not bashing men here. Men's brains and women's work very differently, we all know that. But maybe one day he is reflecting on that conversation and he suddenly realizes what you said that hadn't registered earlier.
"Holy crap, she said what? It's not possible she could have been a guy!"
And then when he sees you next, he says: "Remember when we were talking about (whatever), you said, 'When I was a guy.' What the f*** was that about?"
Hang in there, girl
Yes, we all have secrets.
We all have something that we don't tell someone else, but these things
usually don't relate to the relationship.
Many men will be OK with your transsexuality
So you may end up going through several men to find one right for you, just as men go through several women to find the right one for them. There are a lot of men out there who will be fine with your being transsexual. I have one, and dated others who were OK with that before I met him.
Some of the men you meet will just be looking for sex. Don't feel that's all any man will want from you. Genetic women go through exactly the same thing before they find the right guy.
You may have had the surgery. You can live as a woman, you can have sex as a woman, but many of us don't feel complete until we have a man. One of the reasons is that he helps reaffirm your femininity, which is very important to me, and I think also important to almost every girl. He wants to treat you as a woman. He wants to have sex with you as a woman.
Don't you want that for yourself as soon as you can get it? You get it by disclosing everything to this guy. If he's understanding and accepting, think about how good this relationship is going to be.
It's precisely the same in any other kind of romantic relationship, no matter if you're a GG, a guy looking for a woman, or if you're a gay male or a lesbian. The sooner you disclose everything to your partner, the sooner you will know whether you have a future with that person, and that's good for everyone concerned.
If he's not OK with your GID, then he's obviously not the right guy, and it's better to find out today rather than tomorrow. That way, you can move on and be in far less pain in doing so.
Copyright 2007 by Nikki, all publication rights reserved by TSgirlfriend.com.
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