Making a choice to get to know your true nature but keep it hidden comes with many consequences. Not the least of these is the possibility of thinking some very interesting thoughts about the human condition and my condition in particular, of course. Today, a post for my benefit, and for the benefit of others who might have the same condition.
'C' and I were chatting and I started a discussion I usually avoid on the 'transition option'.
He is a wonderful friend and a very good listener who knows my heart and as such will not pressure me one way or another. When there is a question I have not asked myself but he thinks I should, he ventures to ask it for me. This time, he simply observed that "if you think you might be lonely if you do this or that, you might be lonely already."
Now even though the transition option is not on the table, a really good observation like that did send me down interesting paths of thought:
The way things stand, interaction with people in my world is stifled. I can be with a group of people and none of them really know the real me, but they think they do. Everyone is acting 'normally' and things can be as my wife wants them; stealthy. One of the things people do know about me involves the arts in our community. I am very recognizable; almost famous as one friend put it. There are so many opportunities for really good and interesting conversation. Sadly the commitment to stealth means becoming engaged in an interesting conversation can be risky because there are often ideas I cannot share. Faced with a possibility of outing myself, I 'clam up', generating feelings of loneliness and isolation. As 'C's observation suggests, how much worse could it be to simply be alone?
The real person and everything she feels and knows is a secret from almost everyone, so people think I am what they see. There is no need to fabricate a life story right up until a couple of years ago, it is only my current and new thoughts that need to be hidden. Stealth; simple but lonely.
For some of those who have no other option but transition, there seems to be yet another sort of stealth, living as though they were part of a 'witness protection program'; creating a new identity for themselves and hiding their back-story, all so that they can simply be their true sex. That sort of thing might work well for the very young, but at my age and in my case it could be a problem. I do not think I would want to have to become a hermit, or move to some place where nobody knows me then make up some sort of false history to be able to live in peace. To me, that would be the ultimate loneliness.
To be really true to myself might mean accepting the sort of attention one gets if you are an object of curiosity, at least for a while.
I don't hate attention. If it weren't for stealth, you would read here about parts of my life that already bring me some measure of fame. They are things that have come as a result of hard work and passionate commitment. To be an object of attention because of something you are rings as unpleasant to me.
There are definitely parts of my art and work that have become richer and stronger because of my transsexuality, but transsexuality does not define me. More and more, I wish to share that complexity and richness, but have not found a way as yet.
Some stories here in the Land of Blogs seem to imply that once people's initial curiosity over what it means to be transsexual passes, you can get on with your life successfully. They make me wonder how true that might be for me and what that might mean for the lonely feelings.
I wonder if it is time to
Accept and expose this very special quality I have, no fault of my own
Acknowledge its value and let others 'get over it'
Blend what have been two lives into one even more unique and public one.
Accept the stealth
Accept that loneliness is part of the human condition
Learn to live with feelings of loneliness
End the self examination
~ "move along... there is nothing to see here" ~