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Day 10: FAQ

2014 October 2
by Jen DiGiacomo

And on Wednesday, I rested.

Now seems as good a time as any to address some questions about being transgendered. Or at least my experiences and thoughts about being transgendered.

There are a lot of articles out there about what it means to be transgendered, and some of them seem to castigate folks for asking “inappropriate” questions or using the wrong words.

My approach is a little different, and let me reiterate that I speak only for myself, but I think allowing people the freedom to ask questions is a step in the right direction. We need to educate people, not discourage them from learning about what it means to be transgendered.

Despite what Thomas Gray might suggest, ignorance is not bliss. So I’ll take the awkward questions and try to answer them as best I can. If it comes from a good place, it’s all good.

To that point, I offer up the first in a series of questions I’ve had to ask myself and expect others to ask, or at least have in their head as I come out of the closet.

Are you gay?

Asking as transgendered person if they’re gay poses problems all itself. Because at some point, if I transition, odds are I will be gay.

To put it simply, I’m not into guys and I still like women. So think of me as a lesbian stuck in a man’s body.

As I say, this can get a little confusing.

Are you a queen?

My understanding is that a queen is gay man who dresses flamboyantly as a woman for entertainment purposes. In essence, a female impersonator. This is not about impersonating a woman, it’s about being who I am.

So nope, not a queen.

Are you on hormones?

Yes. Estrogen and anti-androgens that block my male hormones.

What’s it like to be on hormones?

On the female side, I cry a lot easier, especially the first week. As in I ball my eyes out at sappy commercials. Damn you, Madison Avenue! My skin has gotten softer, my hair shinier and my nipples are crazy sensitive. And not in an erotic way. As in if I clip them on the edge of the table whilst at work, I need to pause and go, oh baby that hurts. I am in the early stages of hormones, so I am getting some breast development but nothing noticeable when wearing a loose shirt. Except perhaps that my nipples protrude like the air conditioning is on high.

On the male side, I don’t get erections anymore. Nothing. Nada. Zip. To quote “One Night in Bangkok,” I get my kicks above the waistline, sunshine.

Are you planning on becoming a woman?

I honestly don’t know. That’s what this journey is all about. I might find that “boy” mode is enough. Long fingernails and a bit more of my feminine side front and center. Think of me as the American version of Eddie Izzard. Only not as funny. Or I may find that that is not enough and “girl” mode is more my speed. But I’m looking forward to finding out. It’s an exhilarating ride so far, and terrifying, but I’m so much happier right now. It’s funny, I find myself grinning a lot more, so I’m pretty sure I’m headed in the direction. All I can say is, stay tuned.

What about your “junk”?

Well, I still have my “junk.” It doesn’t do a whole due to the anti-androgens at present, so again we’ll see how this plays out.

Are you sure you’re not gay? 

This was a big hurdle for me to overcome. I am cool with being gay or bi or whatever. I am cool if people think I’m gay or bi or whatever. But right now, I’m only interested in girls. That said, if Captain Jack Harkness and his 51st century pheromones made a pass at me, I don’t think I would turn him down. But let’s face it, who would?

Note: When I began transitioning in 2014, I was known by my nickname DiG, which sufficed until I learned my mom had chosen Jennifer had my birth gone differently. So for historical sake, I leave my posts and podcasts as originally conceived, but know that my name is and apparently always was Jen.
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