gender change

3 months on T!

First thing’s first, photos!

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I finally got my legal court order for my name and gender change on Friday. There was even another trans guy there. He was ahead of me on the list, so he went before I did. It was nice to have that happen, so I knew what to expect when it was my turn to go in front of the judge. Then, we sat outside the court room for nearly an hour as we waited for the rest of the name changes to happen and to receive our certified copies. I sat across from him, but a couple of chairs over. I wanted to talk to him, but I wasn’t sure if it would be appropriate, so I didn’t.

I think I’m itching to have others to talk to about experiences in person. It’s nice to have all these internet resources, blogs, and YouTube videos, but there’s something to just having a conversation with someone. I haven’t had the pleasure of talking to another trans person (at least not as far as I’m aware) in person. I know there are discussion groups down at The Center, but they are on weeknights and somewhat inconvenient for me to get to due to work and such. Hopefully, I will be able to make it to a discussion group one of these weeks. I’ve been saying that for months now, but I can continue to hope!

Back to the name change stuff, I went to social security administration immediately after my court hearing. In California, in order to update your driver’s license, your information has to be first updated in the social security database. And I wanted a new ID as soon as possible. I also put my application in the mail for a new birth certificate. Who knows how long that will take to arrive. I went to the DMV on Monday. They took my driver’s license and replaced it with a piece of paper with my updated information (no photo), took my picture, and told me that I’d get my new driver’s license in 7-10 days. For two days, I was thinking to myself, “now how am I going to buy beer for the next two weeks since they took my only photo ID that has my date of birth?” Finally, I realized that I still have my passport, hah! I updated my school records and my bank records, as well. No one seemed to bat an eye, except when I called my bank. The woman on the other end said to me after I said I wanted to change my name and gender, “So, you are changing to mister?” Then, she told me that she needed to call some other people to see if it was within her job scope to make the requested the changes. I think she probably never encountered such a request, but she handled it pretty well, I think.

I finally came out to the lab I work in. I wrote an email to them while I was waiting at social security. It feels like such a relief to finally not have that hanging over my head. I have had very positive responses (or no response at all). Everyone is actually putting in an effort to call my August and use the correct pronouns. I was concerned about one or two of my coworkers reactions, but they seem to be very cool about the whole thing. I finally feel like… I don’t know, myself.

As far as physical changes go, I am finally starting to get in a bit more facial hair, mostly just the sideburns and the chin, but I’ll take it. It’s still pretty sparse and light in color, but it is coming in steadily. My muscles are still growing! I’ve gained nearly 15 pounds from my pre-transition weight. I’m pretty sure this is nearly all muscle since I haven’t seen a change in my hip or waist measurements, but measurements of my neck, biceps, calves, thighs, and shoulders have gone up. I’m still kind of disappointed that I haven’t seen an apparent change in my fat distribution. I intend to increase the frequency of my cardio workouts to at least facilitate fat loss since it doesn’t seem to want to move. I’m pretty pleased with the rate that I’m gaining muscle though. I’ve noticed that I’m had a really huge appetite lately now that I’ve been able to consistently been able to work out. I noticed an increase when I began taking testosterone, but it’s reached another level. Sometimes, I eat a decent sized meal, and within an hour or less, I’m starving again.  Below the belt, I have definitely noticed an increase in size. It’s been 5 weeks and some days since my last period. I’m hoping that continues; the time between the last two was 7 weeks.

The Dreaded Pelvic Exam

I feel like my last post was a bit dramatic, and I would like to delete. However, in an effort to keep everything real here and not sugarcoated, I’ll let it remain there as it is. It was how I felt at that time. Now, let’s move on to more exciting topics.

It has been a little over 5 years since I’ve had my last pelvic exam, which I think is a bit longer than one should go without getting one of those things. I’d say that probably the only reason I even got one then was because I was in the military and a full physical was required before I was allowed to be on my merry way out.

So, I wasn’t actually dreading it. I just thought it was a fun title for this post. I mean, yes, it’s uncomfortable and awkward (even for cisgender women) having your doctor so into such a personal and private area, but I feel pretty comfortable with that area. It doesn’t cause me huge dysphoria. Sure, I’d like to have fully functioning male sex anatomy, but that is never going to be possible for me. Either way, my doctor knows that for FtMs getting this exam can be extremely uncomfortable, so she was really accommodating and understanding. It was relatively quick and painless.

Besides that, we talked about how the transition was coming along. I complained about the lack of fat distribution (my hips and thighs are still the same size, if not slightly larger in circumference, as before I started T), but also talked about how nice it was to see the increase in my muscle mass. We’re waiting to see if my period is going to come within the next couple of weeks, but I will be meeting with her in a little over a month to talk about a possible dose increase along with getting blood work done to see how I’m adjusting to the recent dose increase.

Other than that, she typed a new letter for my legal gender change that stated that I “have undergone” rather than “is undergoing” clinically appropriate treatment. My court hearing is scheduled for this Friday. I will bring my new letter with me, and I hope that will be the end of it. I plan to go to social security right after my hearing and already have a DMV appointment scheduled for Monday, assuming everything goes according to plan. I also have my paperwork filled out and ready to drop in the mail for my new birth certificate once I have the court order in hand.

Here’s to hoping everything goes smoothly on Friday.

Who would have thought?

I had my court hearing this morning for my legal name and gender change. A lady with a screaming child was allowed to go first, but her proof that she published the order in the newspaper wasn’t there yet. Then, the judge calls the first person on the list. They tell him their name, and he goes over the name they’ll be changing it to and asks if they have any questions. Now, I start to get nervous. There were a few people in the court room, and I was sitting there wondering exactly what would be said when he says that I am now legally male. I was second on the list of cases, but then he calls the third person. They go through the whole dance. Then, he proceeds to call the fourth, fifth, and sixth case. Finally, he calls my case. I stand up and state my name. He tells me there were no objections to my case… however, the letter that my physician wrote stated that I am undergoing clinically appropriate treatment. According to the California Health and Safety Code it must be stated “(name of petitioner) has undergone clinically appropriate treatment…” Really? I can’t believe that the tense of my transition is grounds for not granting my name and gender change. Lawyers, bah. Now, I have to get another statement from my doctor that basically says the same exact thing with three letters that are changed.  Then, I get to waste another Friday morning in two weeks doing this all over again. Let this be a lesson to all of those in California. Make sure it says exactly what it says in the California Health and Safety Code (link provided). Needless to say, I’m disappointed that I have to wait even longer now to get a new driver’s license since I worry that people won’t believe it’s me when I show them my current one, but there’s nothing I can do but wait. I have to say though, it seems kind of ridiculous that there is such a technicality since I will always be undergoing treatment. There’s never a point when I will not have to take hormones, but then, I could see if I were only getting top or bottom surgery and not taking hormones. Or maybe I wanted know medical treatment and only received psychological treatment. I can see how that could be seen as clinically appropriate, but still.

Anyway, two weeks from now I will be legally known as August and recognized legally as male.

2 months on T!

Well, today is my 2 months on T, as you can tell from the title of my post. Looking at my pre-T photos and the pictures that I managed to take of myself today, I can definitely see a difference in my muscle definition in my back. The chest is harder to tell, which is why I decided to try the new post that’s in the last pic. I must have taken around 20 photos. I’m super picky. It’s a lot easier when Alex takes the pictures for me, but I’m not sure how many more opportunities I’ll have for that.

As far as other changes I’ve noticed, I think the hair on my chin has doubled from about 10 hairs to 20 hairs, haha. I guess that’s something. I have noticed an increase in hair on my thighs which used to have very light, fine hair. Also, my calves used to have no hair at all, but now there it is beginning to fill in. My voice has changed. It feels different in my chest when I speak or sing. Either the oiliness of my face has calmed down or I’ve gotten used to it, but the acne associated with the initial increase in oil on my face has also calmed down. I had a 7 week break from my period, but it unfortunately came last week. Hopefully, it will stay away for good this time. I haven’t noticed any fat redistribution yet. I hope that starts to happen soon. I’m really self-conscious about my hips and thighs. I always have been, but I think even more so now that I’ve been on testosterone. I haven’t really noticed any changes at all in aggression or my ability to cry as I’ve seen others talk about.

I saw my doctor last week, and we decided to increase my dose to 150 mg/2 weeks. I was on what my doctor considers the lowest dose starting out, and we haven’t seen any adverse affects, so my doctor thought it would be safe to increase my dose.

Other than that, I’ve been ridiculously busy with work since I graduated. It is both really nice and kind of sucks at the same time, but in the end, I think all the hard work will pay off. My court date for my name and gender change is at the end of next week. I’m really looking forward to getting a new ID that will have my real name and gender on it. I wonder what that will be like since I pass about only 5% of the time. A lot of times, people (cashiers and those types of people) will call me sir, but then they’ll look at me again and say, “Oh sorry ma’am.” The best thing I can muster up to say is “it’s okay.” Or I just get called ma’am or whatever from the start. I’m really looking forward to when I can grow some facial hair. I feel like that will help with people misgendering me.

Until next time!

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