Archives

All posts for the month December, 2014

Happy New Year

Published December 31, 2014 by Katier Scott

Looks like time beat me and I ran out of time to do all the planned blogging.

However, before I get to drunk down at my local, I would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year.

This has been the biggest project of its kind I have ever done. It’s continued existence includes in no small part the followers, commenters, and readers of my tiny little blog.

Thankyou everyone, and hope you will follow my journey through 2015!

Happy New Year!

Advertisements

New Years – FAQ..

Published December 31, 2014 by Katier Scott

I’ve decided to split this weeks posts up a bit, we’ll have an official week summary one in a later post but I thought I’d start off with a bit of a FAQ. I could do this as a VLog – but times counting against that so we’ve got a text blog.

So here are a few questions about me, and transsexual issues in general – some are based on questions I have been asked, others situations I’ve been put it, turned into questions.

Q. When did you first know you were a female?

A. It was a slow realisation, started off in puberty where I wondered what it was like to be female, but wasn’t until I started using female characters online that I realised that the reason I didn’t feel comfortable as a man, was because I was a woman. I actually have gone as far as writing a song about it all, although it’s not been played yet!

Q. Do you have a partner?

A. Not officially, no, 2015 there is definitely a chance that might change and there have been people who – given a better set of circumstance – definitely could be, but at this time of writing, nope. The biggest issue for a transwoman is that lesbians and straight men both get hung up on the physical malfunction so most people who show an interest in me are men who see it as a bit of a fantasy.

Q. What’s the hardest thing being a transwoman?

A. For me it’s definitely fashion, working out how to make things work together, especially when using a lot of different items, is one hell of a challenge for me. Dating is another, of course, but really that’s about it. Most other challenges I’m certain are simply down to normal life.

Q. Are you a trans-activist?

A. Nope, not as such. I am happy to help other trans-people, hence this blog, and I definitely support the need for trans awareness, but I simply don’t have the time to dedicate to actually being active in that kind of role.

Q. What gave you the idea of this blog?

A. I did Journalism and Photography at University so am always looking for the opportunity to use those skills. When I was about to start my hormones I simply realised it was the ideal time. In order to help people, and give the curious answers, someone has to make the effort to provide the resourses, and in my case ‘put myself in the picture’.

Q. What project?

A. Wait what? You don’t know this.. ok kidding.. a lot of my blog posts are general in topic so I’m not surprised some people won’t realise it’s a photo-journalist/documentary project. I am taking one photo of me topless a week, which will then go into a book documenting the changes that hormones have in the feminisation process. Each photo will have a titbit from the corresponding week or a trans issue or fact. The book is intended to be a artistic/photojournalistic/informative piece of work.

Well that’s all folks for this blog post.

Week 44 – Day 6 : Hey it’s Christmas.. I’m allowed to be late!!

Published December 27, 2014 by Katier Scott

Firstly I’d like to wish all my Subscribers, readers and friends a Happy New Year and hope you all had a fantastic Christmas. I did my usual trip to my Parents and then got caught in the snow on the way back after the English Weather was typically English and failed to follow logic!!

A 55 to 65 minute journey took over 2 hours and I arrived home soaked and freezing and most definitely enjoyed my bath!! Was definitely my worst motorbike journey and in conditions I would definitely never consider under any circumstances, unfortunately when you leave on a journey in the rain and snow hits.. your kinda up the proverbial swanny without a paddle!!

Anyway I’ve now started my T-blockers and been on them for about 3-4 days, and haven’t really noticed anything different. I obviously expect most changes to take a few weeks, but as I’ve just sent my hormones out of kilter again an emotional reaction would have been expected.

Probably the highlight this week was on Christmas day, when my Dad gave me a superb present simply by what he said. We were at an event he was helping with where my mum and others cooked Christmas Dinner for local people who would, otherwise, have spent the Day alone. Dad introduced me as ‘my daughter’ to one of the other volunteers which was fantastic. I gave him a big hug, and it highlights the most important trait needed when it comes to friends and family.. PATIENCE.

My family have always been very supportive but generally misgender a lot, but it’s a lot for them to take in, so understandable that it’ll take time. There’s never been a hint of refusal, although my kids will always see me as ‘dad’ – but in this day and age why should ‘dad’ be gendered?, simply a time of getting used to saying it. My mum self-corrected a lot over the weekend which is again something she’d not really done before, although we rarely see each other so it’s unusual for me to see her talking about me in front of me – or just referring to me in the course of normal conversation. I really do love my family and friends, I am so grateful for all the support they give me.

I also received my Decree Nici today, so in 6 weeks should be legally single again. It’s a shame the marriage didn’t work out but both of us agree that we probably made a mistake getting married in the first place. But I can’t complain, I have 3 fantastic children and am proud of them all.

Anyway that’s it for this week, next week will be the last in 2014 – a year that has had it’s ups and downs, but definitely more up and than down.

Week 43 – Day 4 : Goodbye Mr T

Published December 18, 2014 by Katier Scott

Woohooo, took them a month, but I finally got a letter from Sheffield, full of good news.

I will be on 50mg of anti-testosterone drugs hopefully as of Monday which will hopefully make life much easier as body hair should reduce and, if I am lucky, some male pattern baldness will reverse.

I don’t expect a huge return of hair, but enough for being able to go around without a wig would be awesome. I am also hoping general feminsation etc. Will increase noticeably as my body isn’t fighting the conflicting wishes of two different hormones.

The consultant also confirmed that he was referring me for voice therapy and facial hair removal as well as surgery when the time comes.

So overall a positive letter, I am seeing the gp Monday and hopefully be saying goodbye to Mr T starting on the same day.

Week 42 – Day 3 : The Real Life Test

Published December 10, 2014 by Katier Scott

This weeks blog post is brought to you courtesy of this article in the Metro from last Saturday which was apparently written by a transman who clearly doesn’t understand the Real Life Test, or as it’s more correctly called Real Life Experience, and it’s purpose. This isn’t the first time I’ve witnessed a transperson clearly misunderstanding and indeed I mentioned the same subject previously in week 39.

This article sparked a lively and interesting debate on one of the groups I am part of and included a group who, despite forming approximately 50% of all Gender Dysphoric patients, I see contributing to groups quite rarely – Transmen. I know a few transmen but know little about the challenges they face compared to transwomen.

The lack of knowledge has never been for want of not knowing, indeed I mentioned something similar in this blog a few months ago, however this thread, coupled with the article, was the first time I’d seen ‘inside’ the world of a transman. The article, while showing a distinct lack of understanding about RLE, did highlight one issue that I found interesting, that of ‘time of the month’. Obviously Mens toilets don’t have sanitary facilities so, unless they are fortunately enough to be on contreceptives that stop time of the month from happening, the use of public toilet facilities must be awkward.

As such some transmen feel hormones are essential before they live full time, however during the discussion it was clear that actually the issues for both genders are pretty similar. We both find that hormones ease the transition and it was clear that the people in the discussion all were comfortable with their gender way before they finally reached a trans clinic.

Which is why RLE is a non-issue, it really isn’t a hoop or a checkbox excersize. Why not? Because if you are truly gender dysphoric that chances are you’ll start living as the correct gender before even meeting a GIC, and even if you wait till the GIC tell you too – you’ll still be waiting 3-6 months minimum for hormones, plus at least 2-3 months before anything really starts to be noticeable.

This is because all treatment that requires assessment, rather than diagnosis, needs a minimum of two people to assess and be happy to refer. This is standard practice and not unique to gender dysphoric treatment, any work such as Breast Enhancement or other cosmetic surgery also falls into the same policies.

As the main thing GIC’s want to see is simply that your willing to get on with your life in the correct gender, RLE shouldn’t be seen as a ‘block’ or a ‘test’, indeed even something you should be ‘asked’ or ‘told’ to do. Why? Because it should be more comfortable for you and should be you just living your life.

I don’t know whether I’ve said before, but in my case I did the last year at Uni as a women (while still living at home and having to take the male role there), then moved out and instantly lived full time as a woman. It felt the natural thing to do and I’ve never looked back, so when I finally got onto the medical pathway it was easy for them to put me onto Hormones very quickly.

If someone, however, comes to a GIC still living as their birth gender then there probably is some help needed and thus moving into living in the correct gender might be tougher for them – which ironically means they need it more. If they arrive and haven’t done anything themselves, then the chances are it means they know something is wrong, but need help sorting themselves out before transitioning – which means in their case they will ultimately be asked to spend time in role and the 12 months requirement makes sense to ensure that both the patient and the clinic are confident that they are gender dysphoric.

There are, additionally, plenty of cases of patients forcing themselves onto hormones, and even through the op ( usually privately) then committing suicide or changing mind afterwards.

As such a staged approach, no matter how frustrating it may seem for those of us who are extremely confident and comfortable with our gender, is the only logical way to work through a transition. Is 12 months too long for the RLE part of assessment? I really don’t know, I was up to 3 years before I got to the GIC, and with waiting times of about 12 months plus two appointments being the minimum for most GIC’s before you get hormones, it’s probably a moot timescale if you do it yourself.

So my advice is simple, if your confident you are gender dysphoric, especially if you have been referred to a gender clinic, then start living as yourself as quickly as possible. I appreciate there can be a caviet to that, I delayed as long as I could as I had family and kids to consider – BUT I knew what I was and made the switch as quickly as possible when I could.

Don’t get me wrong, transitioning is a HUGE step, even if your comfortable with your gender dysphoric ‘status’ but your going to have to make that jump at some point, so get the ball rolling as quickly as you can. It’ll make the whole thing smoother in the long run.

Of course if your transitioning while working, it’s probably a good idea to talk to people before transitioning, at least to HR – and take some information with you. But don’t let any job stop you, especially in this day and age transitioning is something people are more aware of. As I’ve mentioned before I’ve worked with a HUGE range of people including lots of vulnerable people, with no problems.

Week 41 – Day 3 : Delays and impatience..

Published December 4, 2014 by Katier Scott

For most of my treatment I’ve been pretty patient but right now I’m starting to get quite frustrated. I know the NHS isn’t exactly renowned for its promptness but up till now Sheffield has actually been pretty good. All I need form them is a letter for my T-blockers but not only is it so far conspicuous by its absence, but it’s not even certain that the consultant has even asked for the letter to be written well over 3 weeks after I visited – which is more than a little disappointing.

I really feel that the lack of T-blockers is definitely holding back my feminisation so that’s why I’m feeling a little more urgent about it. While it’s nice to have boobs, nothing else has really changed which is definitely starting to frustrate.

The rest of my life is pretty much as-is so not much to talk about really. I performed.. or is ‘croaked’ more accurate as the cold I have currently was just starting and definitely effected my voice, at an open mic on Sunday at the venue I have booked for my first gig in April – so that was cool.

Works agreed to help me with interview development although I am considering a change in career, there’s only so long you can sit in a job with no movement so I’m plotting changes for latish last year. My mum did make a good point, however, and I do need to consider my surgery as the career will definitely require training and having 3 months off in the middle probably is a bit silly!!! Fortunately it’s a career that is flexible enough to mean I should be able to delay things when a surgery date is known.

Other than that a pretty quiet week, next weds I have a docs appointment so I’ll delay the post until I’ve had the outcome of that, I’m really hoping Sheffield have an answer by then.