Coming Out to My Grown Daughter

Hi everyone! I also posted this for the members of CDH. If you want my backstory, please visit my profile. This is the story of what happened when I visited my daughter and her bride in Maryland over President’s Day weekend and came out to her.

I’m in my 4th month of spironolactone (25% drop in total T so far) and I started estradiol last week. I have been a closeted CD for almost my entire life, with stints of activity interspersed with purges that lasted for several years or more. I always felt awkward as a boy and man, and never felt at ease or like I fit in. I had difficulty dating, mostly because of my shyness and terror that someone would find out I liked women’s clothes and wished sometimes that I could have been born female.

I eventually married and we have one grown daughter that will turn 30 this summer. I can’t believe so much time has passed! My wife and I passed our 40th year together last August. It was only a month earlier that I finally revealed this side of me. We are struggling to come to terms with it and how to stay together. Since our daughter was getting married to her long-term partner (a couple for four years) in November, we elected to wait until I was about to start estrogen to tell her that dad is a transwoman.

En Femme Style

I spent several weeks after the holidays trying to figure out how (and how much) to tell her. We picked President’s Day weekend so there would be time to discuss what questions she might have. My wife and I both had a bullet-point list of things to say, but I just kept my face down. My approach changed after we all went to dinner the first night. Both the girls talked about volunteering and giving back to the community. My daughter said she might like to work with seniors who are LGBTQ because they are so isolated. Her wife added how sad it is that people of my generation feel like they have to hide who they really are. Bingo! That’s my intro!

The next morning my wife, daughter, and I sat down to talk. Using the previous night’s discussion as a starting point, I asked my girl what she would say if I told her I am in that group and on HRT to transition. Of course, she did a double-take, but then said she supported me 100%. I figured she would. She had two obvious concerns: my wife and our marriage being okay, and my personal safety. We assured her we are trying to stay together and I am looking after my safety.

The funny part of this is she said she got a text from me a few months ago with a picture of me en femme! I must have accidentally had her on a text of a photo I sent to my wife. She had thought it may have been a joke or a WhatsApp thing and didn’t say anything. She was waiting for me to bring it up! So all the delay and anxiety of planning my reveal was pretty much for nothing (giggle).

But it did take the shock out of it, so not a bad thing. My wife expressed how incredibly hard this is for her – to see her husband fading away and a strange transwoman beginning to emerge that she never knew, didn’t marry,  and doesn’t trust much. We said we have four options: stay together as a married couple (my hope), stay together but be roommates, live apart but stay married for economic reasons, or divorce (our worst-case option, we think).

So, my easiest conversation has started, but many more difficult ones still loom like shadowy specters, haunting me and threatening to steal the joy of transitioning. Additionally, the marriage hangs by a thread of love and closeness built over 41 years together. That thread can break at any time. Still, I don’t have a plan B. Only a threat to my health would make me okay with stopping HRT. I would be disappointed, but I can live with that. Stopping because someone else objects is not okay with me, because then I am denying my own identity in order to make someone else feel better. My wife understands that and is supportive, but for exactly the same reasons, can she be a wife to a transwoman? Only time will tell…

En Femme Style

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Brielle

Biological male, crossdressing off and on for at least 60 years. Married to cis female since 1981, just came out to her in June 2021. I've started HRT and plan to live FT as a woman by the end of 2022. My wife is supportive and we are taking things a day at a time.

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Pippa Baker
Pippa Baker(@pippa66)
5 months ago

Hi Briele. I am in a slightly different situation in that I was divorced about 15 years ago, so am very much single. I didn’t have contact with my daughter for 7 years. We got back in contact about 6 months ago. He is now transitioning ftm which I couldn’t be happier about but am still very anxious about coming out to him as mtf transgender myself. I have been on Spironolactone for some time and about to start hormone treatment. I don’t know when would be a good idea to come out to him as I don’t want to… Read more »

Angela Lavoro
Angela Lavoro(@angielav)
5 months ago

Hi Brielle, Thank you for this important message. I am in a situation much like yours. I am 76 and have been out since 2020 to my wife and two daughters (40, 42). We have been married for 43 years and I am struggling with the same issues regarding our relationship. We haven’t had sex for over 22 years, and I have been faithful during all those years. At this point it seems we are staying together. I know she loves me and she continues to treat me like her husband, though I would much rather be treated as a… Read more »

Roxanne Lanyon
Roxanne Lanyon(@roxanne)
6 months ago

I so wish I could live my life as Roxanne. I want to wake up each morning, freshen my make-up, put on my panties, nylons, skirt and blouse, and go out to face the world! I so wish I could. Next, I want to find a man to be a husband to me, and let me be his wife! I will be his good girl, and love him silly! I will make him so happy, and completely satisfied, as his woman. Oh, I have so much love to give, and I want to start now! Oh, please help me with… Read more »

Lucinda Hawkins
Active Member
Lucinda Hawkins(@lucinda)
6 months ago

ah and yes you look absolutely lovely, very feminine looking and legs that would turn heads

Lucinda Hawkins
Active Member
Lucinda Hawkins(@lucinda)
6 months ago

hello and can i say congratulations on coming out! just hope your marriage will get better. its nice that your daughter wants to go to a support group of the LGBTQ , if i read it right.lol. there are so many cross dressers that are in the closet for a reason that society is not ready for that. woman cross dress all the time, not wearing a dress or skirt and make up, they wear manly pants and a shirt, short hair now days. what is the problem with men wear female cloths? NOTHING. men wore skirts way back in… Read more »

Crystal Springday
Crystal Springday(@crystal1965)
6 months ago

Just seeing this now. But we told our accepting 27 year old daughter on the same day your article was published. Neat.

Jennifer Edwards
Jennifer Edwards(@jenniferedwards)
6 months ago

Thank you Briielle. I am going to try to take things slow. As my mind and body change,, I wil change with it. Go with the flow . Jennifer

DeeAnn Hopings
Member
Active Member
DeeAnn Hopings(@flatlander48)
6 months ago

I think there is a different sense about things when you come out to family members as opposed to friends. Often it is more difficult to come out to family members; my perception anyway. I’ve mentioned before that my public coming out was as Mistress of Ceremonies for a public event put on by our LGBT employee affinity group. However, before the event happened I made it a point to have The Conversation with my daughter and son, 7 or 8 close friends and my department manager at the time. I had phone conversations with my kids as they live… Read more »

DeeAnn Hopings
Member
Active Member
DeeAnn Hopings(@flatlander48)
6 months ago
Reply to  Brielle

I think one thing for everyone to remember is that coming out is not a “One Size Fits All” kind of situation. There is so much variance regarding the members of our community in terms of life experiences, family situations, potential anti-LGBT sentiments, etc. Therefore any sort of all encompassing statements don’t have much use. While I tend not to seek confrontation, my situation and the outcome I desired, shaped my thought process. Would this be a recipe for someone else? Probably not. Clearly most folks would not present their new persona in front of 130 people, but that made… Read more »

Jennifer Edwards
Jennifer Edwards(@jenniferedwards)
6 months ago

Thank you for this post. I am also going through the same situation. Telling my daughter that I am a transwomen and will soon be starting HRT, Please keep us posted and to your experiences, It really helps as I try to navigate these rough waters. Thank you, Jennifer

Jane Scott
Jane Scott(@janeymygirl)
6 months ago

Brielle, this is beautiful. Congratulations, and best wishes on the road ahead.

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