Sunday, June 22, 2014

Church

I went to church today, still presenting as male. Though it was a good experience (I was a substitute and helped my Mom take care of the primary kids including being assigned to read a story to and draw a picture with this autistic kid since he'll often misbehave in class), it was very triggering again. Once I got home my parents and family having been awesome in using correct pronouns and "Dani" for a while now, and that helped prevent things building to panic attack level, but I was still feeling really worn out, and just not really wanting to talk to anyone while presenting like this (as male).

The same thing happened when I hung out with 2 MtF trans friends yesterday and at the north star conference a few weeks ago - I still was presenting as male, so I had little desire to even be there. I still try and make the best with what situation I'm given in life right now, but it's just so exhausting. Not to mention that pretty much eliminates any desire to actually be outgoing and spend time with others. I still do because it's necessary to stay healthy, and I care about my family and friends, but it's just always been hard while presenting as male. It's interesting though - there is a very tangible difference between when people use my male name and male pronouns and Dani and female pronouns. I mean now that my family is using female pronouns and Dani the panic attacks have basically stopped. Maybe I've explained this before but I can't just stress how much that helps, for reasons I don't fully understand. There is still quite a bit of distress related to presenting as male, but it's much more manageable. Yet things like Church where they refer to me as male and my male name are a real challenge for me because of that triggering aspect, as is clothes and such being pretty gender specific there. That's why I've been working for a while towards getting to a place where I can present as female at church (at a new singles ward) and elsewhere, because then it's more reasonable/easy for most people to use the right pronouns and name, but it just takes time.

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