Learning To Love Myself
I have known I was a gay man in a female body since I began to understand what “gay” meant—maybe when I was 10 or so. I play-acted in situations as a gay man but pretty much kept it all to myself, never tried to explain it to my family. I didn’t even really understand it; I just thought I had a great imagination that made me happy. At 18, I got married to “escape,” but of course, as the marriage was to a straight man, I only moved from one type of cage to another. After 13 years, I divorced and went into a LTR with a woman. I thought I’d finally figured out my problem and was happy in a lesbian relationship for several years.
I’m a writer and my gay-maleness has manifested itself in much of my writing. But I began to see my writing as my enemy and so quit that around the same time I got divorced. When I finally started writing again in 2007, all my gayness reemerged and, though it took me a year and a half to realize it, it finally dawned on me that I was a gay man. It took that long for me to finally understand and accept it as a fact and the truth of my life. This understanding also ended my LTR, but we remain best friends and she is a huge encouragement to me.
Accepting myself, however, is quite another problem and I am still struggling with it. I know that I am happier when I am allowed to “be” a gay man. When I read gay novels or write gay stories or watch gay movies. At 47 years old, I have made a choice not to undergo surgery, but rather to make the best of my situation. If I were younger, I would almost definitely have surgery, but as this realization came so far into my life, I’ve decided to continue in my female shell. In the past several months, I have gone through different attitudes as far as the people around me go. At first, I was afraid to tell anyone. Then I went through a **** them attitude: if “they” don’t like it, then tough. Now I am moving into an understanding that this is where I am in the universe, and everyone else is where they are, and whether they accept me or do not accept me makes no difference whatsoever. I must be able to accept myself. And I do accept myself to a certain extent, although I struggle a lot. I have so many frustrations with this physical body that I only barely like myself, and am far away from loving myself. However, I know that for me to be truly happy, I must learn how to do this.
I know I am rambling, but so much has been happening to me lately. The universe has put so many different people and ideas and books and websites—including this one—in my path. It truly is an amazing thing. It’s almost as if I hit the fast-forward button to getting myself figured out. Actually, I know I still have a long way to go, but the past few days have been brighter for me, and that is a good sign, I think.
I encourage anyone who is feeling any of the same things that we in this group feel to post here and talk about it. We can draw strength from one another. And it’s always good to know that you’re not the only one going through something. We are all a part of the same universe. We all exist for our own unique and specific reason. And discovering that reason can be a beautiful and glorious thing if we allow it to be.