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General Discussion » Dating after My Ex » September 1, 2022 7:16 pm

Replies: 30

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I'm 6 months out from leaving my spouse of 13 years (who came out to me as MTF trans about 4 months before that). It was a massive shock. Made more complicated by my ex's desire for us to stay together (they see themselves as a lesbian, so their attraction for me was not an issue). That 4 months before the split, I was numb. Unable to really accept it. Wishing I would wake up. But the reality that I'm a heterosexual woman made it impossible for us to work when they started HRT. And so I left, got my own apartment, and filed for divorce last month. 

I've been doing OK in the aftermath. And by OK I mean that it's been a fucking RIDE. Honestly Im just proud of myself for surviving. But now I'm kind of stuck in the eat, sleep, work, cry in the shower, and repeat spin cycle  of whatever the fuck I'm going through. Processing. Grieving. I hear it takes time. But can I just say that I'm also....craving being with a man? For a long time I felt totally shut down sexually. Recently, though, desire has returned and I'm starting to think about dating. But I'm scared! Really scared.

I'm so freaked out by getting close to someone again. I don't know what the red flags are for closeted Male to Female Trans people. There weren't many with my ex. Everyone I know was surprised. It seemed to come out of nowhere. And my ex, although cagey about it sometimes, has maintained that they did not know they were trans up until about 2 months before they told me -- that the pandemic somehow changed things for them and they were able to see that this was the issue. The only red flag throughout the years was that my ex struggled with depression on and off. They attribute this general sense of unhappiness to their transness, but insist it wasn't consciously known at that time. IDK. it doesn't really fucking matter. I just don't know what the hell to keep an eye out for. Cuz I'd really like to avoid this cursed situation again if I can. 

I'm  also plagued by anxiousness about how to contex

Is He/She Gay » is She Gay - Will she ever comeout? » July 26, 2022 5:00 pm

Replies: 35

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Hey Bandala, 

I totally get the worry about opening up the topic for discussion. But if I could go back and tell myself anything it would be to start talking earlier and earnestly with my ex about the issues I saw but was so worried to address. I ended up instigating these convos eventually. Looking back, starting these convos was the beginning of a process of me taking control of my life back in a situation in which I had become really passive, afraid, and disempowered. Do it for yourself. I second Soaplife's suggestion above to consider counseling and perhaps find a way to start these conversations in the context of couple's counseling. I also would have done this initially in retrospect...a lot of the first convos with my ex on this topic involved them denying and avoiding...and me buying it. It would have helped to have a mediator there to help keep things on track and to help suss out the red flags and indications of repression, since my ex was very avoidant, fearful themselves, and in denial. 

Support » Seeking support » July 25, 2022 5:47 pm

Replies: 4

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I realize I didn't give any advice after my rant...basically...listen to your instincts about what YOU want and need. It was really hard for me to separate myself from my spouse's gender journey. We had had a very close, supportive, loving relationship. Best friends and all that. They were an attentive and active lover. But then they became very depressed. It lasted and lasted. I used to fear that I would come home to find they had taken their life. By the time they came out, I was so focused on being a supportive partner that I lost track of myself in the call to be there for them in this process. I was really worried about doing or saying the wrong thing, of what the effect of rejection would be on them at this time. I felt guilty about knowing that it wasn't right for me, and fear about what it would mean to end it. I understand wanting to support your spouse at all costs...but it's not helping anyone if you feel that you must sacrifice or deny parts of who you are to make it work between you. If this whole mess is about anything at all its about being true to ourselves.

Support » Seeking support » July 25, 2022 5:29 pm

Replies: 4

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I understand your fear and the pain of this. My spouse came out over a year ago as trans. At first they identified as non-binary, but pretty quickly that shifted to identifying as a woman. Every trans persons' path is different, but I think that any solution to this situation that relies on trying to further repress it, or convert it, will fail, and do a lot of harm to all parties involved.  I'm a straight cis woman. I knew immediately that my spouse and I could not make it work since I am not attracted to woman with the same intensity that I am to men.  I knew this at my core, but fear and denial are powerful motivators.  Maybe I needed to see the transition start for it to become undeniably real...maybe I was just in shock. I spent those months trying to figure out if I could make it work as the transition amped up at a very fast pace. But I needed to come to terms with myself, what I already knew and hated myself for knowing because it would mean the end. It was insanely difficult for me to allow myself to leave and start over -- in part because I didn't instigate any of this. I hadn't wanted our relationship to end, or change into the kind of relationship my ex spouse suddenly (to me it seemed) wanted. I had to let go of all those things I had wanted for us. But I didn't have to let go of everything I wanted for myself. You don't have to do that either. Its super fucking hard to let go and move on. I'm not that far into this process. It's been 6 months since I moved out and got an apartment of my own. But choosing yourself is possible, even when it feels terrifying. You can't and shouldn't control your spouse's gender or sexual identity. And they cant and shouldn't control yours. I wanted our relationship to work so bad I was almost willing to talk myself into staying in something I knew wasn't right for myself. If I had done that it would have destroyed me. And the truth is, both my spouse and I deserve to be in relationships that suit us and fulfill us in a

General Discussion » The new "4" letter word....Sex » July 25, 2022 4:09 pm

Replies: 39

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What you're going through is tough regarding your relationship to your own body, self, desire, feelings, etc in this situation. I've been there...

My situation is similar and different. My spouse was also my first and only. We married very young (I was 21)...Had been together 12 years. It differs somewhat from you in that my spouse came out as trans (MTF) about a year ago. We're now divorcing. I moved out in January of this year. I can tell you that the space and separation, while terrifying, has done me worlds of good.

I remember the heavy fear I felt after my ex first came out and I was reeling from the shock of it all. I definitely remember being horrified at the prospect of dating again in that torrent. Terrified of losing everything and not wanting any alternative, while also not wanting what had become reality with this person and relationship I thought was ofrever and that I thought I understood the nature of. What I can say is that for myself it was horrifying because I WASN'T READY for any of it, especially fast forwarding to dating and moving on from something I hadn't grieved the end of yet. You can take as much time as you need to heal before jumping into some new relationship. I also had complicated feelings about my body and sex coming out of that relationship, especially because my ex projected a lot onto me...had developed a whole theory about me being a closeted/repressed trans man (I'm a cis woman) in an effort to transform me into the kind of partner they actually wanted. Hence, parts of your story struck a chord for me. I felt really broken down and lost as I exited that relationship...and it's only been 6 months since I ended it.

Separation and distance were necessary for me to reconnect with myself. And it's taking time. 

The first steps I took that helped me included  annoying things like daily exercise and/or meditation, leaning on friends and family if you can, and going easy on yourself throughout. I have been focusing on bui

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