Help needed: family issues and I don’t know what to do

What option do I should choose?

Please help me to decide what option I have to choose as I explain in the topic.

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  • #89451
    Annette Cross
    Participant

    Hello girls,

    I come here looking for your kind advice because I am in front of a crucial decision and really I don’t know what to do.

    First of all, you have to know that, for working issues, my family lives in Peru and I live in Ecuador until December when they will move definitely to Ecuador. I don’t split out with my wife, it is just a temporary thing.

    Last June I came out to my wife and kids (two teens, one boy of 16 and a girl of 14) that i am a transgender woman. At first they were really supportive and understand my decision and said they will be with me in my transition journey. But as I learned the first impression don’t always remain. After the initial shock, they began their own grieve process, my daughter was really amazing at the beginning, she started to call me by my name and use the right pronouns but about a month ago she had a existencial crisis and realize she miss her dad so much, so I looked for help and she started pshycological therapy last week. My son choose to wait until he finish high school in December to deal with my transition so my relationship with him remain as usual before my transition. And my wife at the beginning was very angry but today her anger has gone but she is in grieve for her lost husband and she is dealing with it to decide what will her do with our marriage, the option more probably is remains living in the same house as best friends, not as wife and wife.

    Because the pandemic, I couldn’t fly to see my family since last march and I miss they so much. This is the first time that I remain far from they so much time in nearly 20 years of marriage.

    So last weekend I told my wife I want to fly to Peru to see they and stay there for a month, so I can celebrate our 19th anniversary on October 20, my 17’s birthday son on October 27 and my 15’s birthday daughter on November 13. As they can see, it is a pretty important part of my year. But she told me that I always be welcome but, as they never saw me as Annette in the flesh it will be some issues that she was thinking deal on December when they move to Ecuador. And If I choose to fly to Peru in October we will need to deal with this in these days two months earlier when she think will be ready to do that.

    So here comes the question: as I see I have three options and I kindly want your help to choose one:

    1. I fly as myself, as Annette, to see my family and i will deal with whatever issues that may come, so maybe my time there will be not as pleasant as I will expect. This option maybe will hurt my family more than help as they because this is unexpectd and they have important thing to deal first until december.

    2. I fly to see my family in male mode, that means a kind as detransition as actually my wife and daughter call me as Annette and accept and support my transgender condition. I think this is the worst option because maybe It will do more harm than good for all of us.

    3. I don’t fly to see my family and wait until December when they will come to Ecuador. I will miss my anniversary and son and daughter’s birthdays for the first time and tell them that is for their own good, to give they time to deal with my transition.

    What do you think? What option i should be choose?

    Thank you in advance for your kind help, it will be really appreciated.

    Kisses,

    Annette

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    Replies
    • #95858

      I would go with ! and deal with what will come up, but at least you will be with your family on special days and all that. they know you are going though the transition to be a female, your daughter calls you by your female name.  you are still their father no matter what.  its that you are happier being a female. so good luck on your journey to see your family and hope all comes out well for you and the family

    • #89952

      A little of both. What occurred to me is what I do in some situations: I show up as androgynous (nonbinary). This way, people who know me as Loren will see the clothes as feminine, and those who know my male self will not be confronted with a full-on transition. This means no skirt or dress, but maybe slacks or jeans (boot cut, not skinny), women’s v-neck t-shirt (not form-fitting)(light on the breast forms, or not at all), conservative sweater(?), loafers or casual shoes.

      It might seem like a compromise if you’re used to dressing very femme, but it’s just another expression of your feminine self, a casual expression, with minimal hints of makeup, no lipstick, maybe lip balm.

      I love it when I get to do this in more conservative settings because I know that ALL my clothing is femme, and I don’t have to explain myself.

      Then, before you arrive, create a game plan for negotiating times when you can be full en femme with your family. Perhaps set up a “date” to dress for dinner, then socialize for the evening, then the next morning get up as nonbinary. Continue to adjust the schedule as THEY feel comfortable.

      My friend Cathy is very clear that her 41 year marriage is more important to her than fully transitioning right now, so she is negotiating all things femme with her wife, including the schedule of coming out to their friends, when she can dress, whether she can dye her hair, etc. We can remember that our partner will often feel that their identity is tied to yours. Not true, but still it feels that way for them, and they have to deal with their own transphobia.

      We have to choose our battles. It’s a marathon, not a race. Not everyone on our team can sprint to the finish.

      In a Special Olympics race, one of the runners fell down. Instead of going for the finish line, the other runners stopped, helped up the fallen runner, and helped them to the finish line. Sometimes we get to do that with our friends and family. Don’t leave them behind.

       

      2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #100632

        Hi Annette…

        Lori has the rights of it so I will not reiterate her brilliant reply. What I will say, however, is I think it right to go to them… on their home territory as it were. Where they feel most comfortable.
        If you wait until they arrive in a new setting the fear ans discomfort that that may engender could be counter productive to your come out fully.
        I have just written a post on the grieving topic…

        Polly

      • #92207
        Cassie Grey
        BRONZE

        This is a reply to an older question but the question is relevant for many of us. I think Lorie Pease gave very good and caring advice for the feelings of both sides.

    • #89951

      Hi, Annette!

      I feel for you so much, as this seems to be such an important crossroads on your journey. I think (personally) that although your wife and family are aware of your new life plan (new to them) – and may be mostly accepting of it – it could be better to wait until they come to you. I say this for two reasons:

      1. It will allow them the opportunity to confirm their willingness to love you and be with you – no matter what – on their terms.

      2. It may be more comfortable for them to meet Annette as a family in a more intimate and family-like setting.(Without extended family and other outside distractions.)

      Just my thoughts, and I wish the very best for all of you!

      Love Shawna

    • #89942

      <p style=”text-align: center;”>Oh my, I wish I had advice to give but all I can think of is go with your gut instanct. I’m in a similar stage right now where most people know I’m trans but it’s not common knowledge yet. It’s not easy, especially with partners, kids and families. Good luck, and your first instanct is usually the right one? :)</p>
       

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