I feel like I’ve come to a weird crossroads in my life, which is an odd feeling at 37 when I thought I had everything all figured out. I’ve been with my wife for over ten years (we’ve been married since 2011), I have a job that I like, in a city that I like enough to stay in for awhile longer. No kids but I’d like one.
Everything was fine. And then, for whatever reason, a series of events occurred that made me question my gender identity. After a scary revelation, months of secret contemplation and then months of therapy, the most I can say at this point is that I’m not cis. Transmasculine feels close, and so does neutrois. I don’t know that trans man fits, because I don’t identify as a “man” and don’t know that I ever will. So far the only thing that’s changed about me is that I usually wear a binder if I go out in public and have short hair. I haven’t taken hormones or had surgery, or any other steps to actually transition. I think about gender more, and talk about it more, but that’s about it. I’ve thought about taking T for a while now, but I have other health issues that make me feel like it’s not a great idea for me right now. That may change. Nothing is for certain, I suppose.
Anyway, here I am at 37 and the person I’ve loved for ten years suddenly doesn’t seem to want to be with me anymore, because I’ve changed too much. Or something. I’m still not sure of the reasons, only that she’s really unhappy and won’t get into specifics right now. I’m not sure if we’re staying together or not, though I said I’d like to go to a couples therapist to see if we can work it out. Something in the way she looks at me is telling me that her mind is made up even though she doesn’t want to say it out loud yet. Also, our dog (who is 17 and has had a long and happy life) is dying of heart failure. She’s on medications that are making a difference, but we’re only prolonging the inevitable.
I’m profoundly sad. Everything is changing and I just want to scream, “No, I didn’t want any of this!” I just keep thinking, if I’d only known what a Pandora’s Box all of this gender stuff was going to be, I never would have opened it in the first place. This is why so many trans people never come out, because they don’t want their lives blown to bits. I wish I could take it back, forget it ever happened, but I can’t. Understanding this part of myself has changed me. I feel less angry, less frustrated, less restless and depressed for reasons I never understood. I wish I’d known this about myself 20 years ago, but the world was a different place then, and I had no concept of trans.
I hope my wife realizes I’m still me. Maybe she won’t, maybe I’m just not what she wants anymore…and I hope if that’s true that I’ll be okay with it. I guess I’ll have to be. But for now, dealing with all this uncertainty is making me anxious, paranoid, angry and sad. I’m just trying to wrap my brain around possibly starting over at 37, and I can’t quite do it.