On tenterhoooks

Definitely nervous about tomorrow. The die is now cast. I haven’t cancelled the NHS appointment, so I am up to London to see what they have to offer me.

No idea what to expect, but seriously worried that I will either lose my temper with them or just get very upset.

I have no desire to “prove” myself disordered, even if that is the name of the game. Their fault: a few months back, when I was new to this and oh-so-over-awed by the power of the gate-keepers, I can imagine myself seeing some sense to it.

But…I’m now well down the hormone road…and the idea of subjecting myself once more to the judgment of others grates. A lot.

Perhaps, as some of my friends in the trans community tell me, things are no longer so bad. I shall see.

And of course, yet again, due to be assessed by a bloke. Sheraz Ahmad.

Pros and cons, anyone?

Anything, anyone?

This is definitely winding me up.




4 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Stace said,

    The only advice I can really give is just be you. Don’t go in there with the mindset of proving who you are, and expecting confrontation. Just be you.

    Easier said than done if the NHS is a confrontational in nature for these assesments – but if you are just you then I don’t see how anyone could not see who you are, and therefore that you’re on the correct road.

    Deep breaths, and success,

  2. 2

    Also Jane said,

    I’m also a male-to-female transsexual in mid-transition, so I’m coming from a fundamentally sympathetic place. I don’t just hypothesise that the carers are also gatekeepers, and that they sometimes enjoy exercising power over us. I know it from direct experience. I also know from direct experience that some of the rules are positively Kafka-esque. I am not a Charing Cross patient, but I gather from another website that they are known to be ‘funny’ about deed polls, and to operate their own deed poll rules rather than accept the law of the land.

    I know that this is maddening, but in your shoes I would play the game by their rules to gain access to the treatment. This is in fact what I did. My deed poll was done by a solicitor so that should I in the future be referred to ChX, they will accept my deed poll. I am well aware that I have gone beyond what English law requires. I too was not best pleased to find myself in a situation where I needed to pay for OTT documentation. I am sure I do not need to tell you that a deed poll is a lot cheaper than getting your reassignment treatment privately.

    Have you read Anne Bolin’s ‘In Search of Eve: Transsexual Rites of Passage’? She is very good about the counterproductiveness of over-rigid gatekeeping methods. In fact I thought it the best book about transsexualism that I have read; and I have read many.

    • 3

      janefae said,

      Nah. There are two considerations here. As you say, a deed poll is much cheaper than a private op. But there are two additional costs associated with ChX. One is time:going private, i could be (intend to be) post-op thistime next year. Playing the system, who knows…but two, three years after that?

      If one looks at it as proportion of non-senile life left, then we are talking 10% to 20% of my remaining existence. Ick! Morbid thought. But time counts.

      The second is my state of mind and their psychology. I can’t even begin to explain just how awful, distressing, demeaning i found the experience and…i should put myslf through more such sessions? More months of feeling as bad as they made me feel last time?

      Nope. Righ now i am sane, confident, happy, non-suicidal…you get my drift? But i am not invulnerable… and i do fear very much what damage overlong exposure to the ChX approach would do to me.


      • 4

        Also Jane said,

        Oh I hear you, my dear. I had not realised you can afford to go private and stick two fingers up to ChX. Good for you. I’m two years older than you so I’m in the same boat; and I expect to pay for my SRS one day.

        Nevertheless I don’t regret my deed poll. Apart from anything else I own a business and needed to send certified copies of the deed poll to an amazing number of people. They are every bit as dim-witted about the actual requirements of the law as ChX, and a solicitor-produced deed poll shuts them up.

        Another aspect of our ID-crazy culture that worries me deeply is the money-laundering laws. As a result of those, everybody and his dog has my passport and driving licence numbers on file, so that any person of ill-intent can steal them for nefarious purposes. I suppose one side-benefit of my transition is that if anyone tries it with my old ID, I have the perfect alibi.

        As to the humiliation of gender-correction treatment, I got kind of innoculated to that by a bad experience in my twenties. I then sought gender correction, and was put off by a psychatrist because he didn’t have the knowledge to handle my rather intellectual, let’s test this hypothesis-to-destruction approach. He basically took the view that anyone with a PhD who wants a career rather than to be a full time housewife can’t be a transsexual. Talk about misdiagnosis! Not to mention male chauvinist.

        The result is that when the ‘uneasy peace’ as a male that this twit promised me finally shattered a year ago, I was ready for them this time and went in all guns blazing. I showed the professionals as little doubt as I could get away with – not that I felt much – and realised that I have to play the game by their rules to get treament. If they want me to wear a skirt to be taken seriously, I’ll wear one. If they want the deed poll on pink paper, they can have it. About the only thing I won’t do is present as a man.

        I also had a dry run with the Albany Clinic in Manchester before going to see the NHS. That boosted my confidence massively, because the Albany Clinic said straight out that they think I’m a transsexual. I would probably have gone with them if my business had not nosedived for a few months & the money dried up. In the meantime, the NHS offered to pay for my referral to Transhealth in London, but hinted that they might not get my SRS through that way.

        So more by luck than judgement, so far I’m a ChX-freee girlie.

        Jane x.

Comment RSS · TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: