Thank you, Joy, for sharing your story, and thank you to Krista and the "On Being" team for your skillful questions and presentations of Joy's story. So much of your story is mine. I'm nearly 40 and my transition caused the breakup of our marriage and our family with 2 children. I've already shared the link to this page with a number of friends. You've explained things in ways I wasn't quite able to. You've also shown me a glimpse of my life a few years down the road. I started as my female self at work only a month ago.
Though I've lived an active part-time as my female self for nearly a decade, that life was secret from my family and family friends. Your thoughts on the selfishness of the choice of transition and on allowing others to have their feelings about me as long as they are respectful were especially helpful this weekend. I tend to be very patient with those who have a hard time accepting me, to the frustration of some friends. What you said provided another perspective on this that I have been able to share.
On Saturday, I spent time in my old neighborhood as my female self helping to clean up from a damaging storm. I moved out of our family home 2 months ago. Upon returning periodically to cut the grass, I sensed I was being avoided. It wasn't unexpected, but disappointing. The storm cleanup on Saturday was the first time my neighbors got to spend time with me as my female self. It came after they've spent a couple of months providing support to my now ex-wife and my kids, the victims of my selfish choice. Everyone deserves a chance at redemption. I'm grateful for the opportunity I had on Saturday.
I'm also grateful for your story. Thanks again, Joy and Krista!
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