Well, my journey has taken a turn. Miss Girlfriend and I have recently hit a rough patch and there has been a higher level of discussion on important matters than usual.
She has maintained for a while now that we cannot get married until I finish my College degree; not even my Masters degree, just my associate level degree. Her rationale is that I need to be making more money before we move in together/ get married.
Fair enough; money problems are a huge sticking point for many new couples or new living arrangements. Couple that with the stressors of attaining a degree or two, and it stresses the relationship to capacity. But as the money/education issues were put to bed, an old comment came back to haunt me. She seemed to forget that she had said it previously; even my Doctor had forgotten that it had come up previously.
The comment was,
“You need to decide if you would ever want to live full time as Cadence. If so, you need to let me know; because that just doesn’t work for me. ”
Apparently, her fear is that were we to have a child, they would face ridicule or mockery, or that someone would try to take the child from us. She was worried how it would affect her job, her family, her friends, my family, my friends, my job… It seemed there was no end to the number of things which concerned her about such a prospect. Some reasonable, most irrational. She feels that living in Savannah, GA, that it’s not a safe place in the country to entertain such a goal or come out as Transgender.
She was also adamant about how it would impact her personally. She insisted that she is not a lesbian, and therefore would not be attracted to me as Caden, and cannot provide me the affirmation I seek and would seek as Cadence. Nor could she provide me the affection I would certainly need. She still treated Cadence as though she’s a separate entity from my male aspect; like I am somebody else when I am Caden.
The issue became so emotional and drawn out that I texted my Doctor, with me in an emotional crisis. I talked with my doctor as much as I could, but also asked if she could fit Miss Girlfriend and I in for an emergency session. She got us in three days later; feeling that the whole episode was forcing an identity crisis on me. Miss Girlfriend and I called a truce, and ceased talking about things until then. It really did feel as if Miss Girlfriend expected me to sort out in the span of days or weeks what it takes some transgender a lifetime to sort out.
We went to the meeting with my Doctor, and it became clear that I really do need to come to terms with what I need to be happy in this world. Miss Girlfriend made it clear that she could not fathom living in Cadence’s world full time as anything more than a friend. Even a partial transition where Cadence was around as much as my male aspect was not well received. I told her it felt like she was trying to get rid of Cadence piece-meal.
Around New Year’s Day, we had a discussion after a Caden day out in Jacksonville, FL that she had a list of concerns about my safe choices of where and when I went out dressed. She also indicated she didn’t feel it was safe for me to be seen with her in the city where we live. She had also given me male underwear for Christmas, despite knowing I wear exclusively panties now. Once Miss Girlfriend gave me her ultimatum on knowing if I wanted to live my life as Cadence, I began to look at what life would be like if Miss Girlfriend and I were to live together under her rules.
I guess I figured that as my children grew older and went to school; it would afford me new opportunities to spend time as Cadence; to be able to get dressed up at home or de-frock and clean up in the comfort of my own home. However little of that seems possible under her rules, expectations, or fears. She is uncomfortable socializing with Caden in town, she’s uncomfortable with the idea of me leaving our home while dressed or driving my vehicle for fear a neighbor will see me. She is fearful our future child may see and be confused. She voiced a concern about what the child would even call me in such a situation; I told her she was the only one who would have earned the title mom or mommy.
The addition of a child throws all sorts of other wrenches into the works; time where I would want to dress after work on when nothing was planned would not be possible, because it would be in the purview of the child, who mustn’t know about Cadence. When I mentioned that understanding and acceptance starts at home, she said that isn’t fair. But somehow it’s fair to paint me into a corner, minimize my feelings, needs and wants. To isolate me, diminish my social ability, subject me to a false paradigm of right and wrong and demand I bend to your will.
When I discussed dressing after work, she even wanted me to collaborate with her in case we had plans or visitors; which smacked of having to ask her permission. Keeping in mind this is the same woman who got pissed when she went on a distant trip from town and was incensed when I was put off that she should have let me know she got there safe, or that she should have checked in periodically so I knew she was safe; because she was after all undertaking what can be a dangerous activity. She felt I was being “controlling.” Wanting to know she was safe, had a fun day, and communicate is controlling. Got it. I’m all for communication; obviously. But the way she was going about things really did feel as though she was tightening the reigns on that upstart delinquent Cadence. Then she said something I may never be able to forgive,
“You are just playing pretend. You aren’t a woman, you will never be a woman. It is all just a game of pretend that people can and will be hurt by.”
Because gender dysphasia can’t possibly be a factor; that my genetics say one thing, but my brain can’t possibly say another.
Turn it back around to me and when I pushed back over the collaboration about dressing; she felt I wanted to operate without rules or impunity. Mixed signals; she wants to operate under her own set of rules and apply another to me. I’m all about rules and structure. But I expect rules and their application to be equitable; to all parties involved.
Factor in the recent men’s underwear gift, all of her concerns, fears and rules and it really did feel that Cadence was a massive inconvenience, embarrassment and source of irrational fears; that she was willing to diminish Caden in her mind, and force Caden back in her box, a small piece at a time. It was also clear to me, if no one else, that Cadence had been burdened with so many rules it would be prohibitive for her to breathe, much less exist.
During the meeting with our Doctor, the most I would fess up to was that if given the opportunity, and all things being fair and equal, I would jump at the chance of living as Cadence. I guess I qualified it too much, because she did not immediately dissolve our relationship. In fact it seems she is still trying to negotiate us out of this. She has constantly reminded me of how tolerant, helpful and understanding she has been. She has reminded me of the gifts and tutelage she has given me in our time together. Even as we left the Doctors meeting, she gave me two new purses and some makeup. Talk about mixed signals.
I have not come outright and told her I want to eventually live as Cadence. I suppose I will have to. I worry about breaking her heart and wasting her time. One of those two things will inevitably happen. It is unavoidable. We spoke of it briefly during our conversations recently; that no matter how this plays out, we both wish to remain close friends. Deep down that makes my heart ache though. Watching her move on without me, as I still pine for her; knowing that I will never enjoy the possibility of enjoying a romance with a woman ever again, because women who would love both my male aspect or Caden or only Caden are far and few between. But she worries that if we stay together, I will grow to resent her because I cannot live as Cadence while I am with her. I may not blame her for that now, but she worries I will.
I worry that I will tell her; and through the hurdles of life, perhaps I never take or get the chance to live as Cadence; which would mean I threw away a perfectly good life and relationship on an empty hope. But I can also look at that as a reason to make it happen; the cost is so high, how can I ever justify not taking the leap to give Cadence life?!
In the back of my mind, if Miss Girlfriend had walked out of that meeting, my next question for my Doctor would have been, what do we need to do to get hormones started? For me not her.” Fortune did not afford me that option. I will never know what I would have done if she had walked out of that meeting. I do know my torrent of tears would have certainly persisted. But even going into that meeting, I knew the costs would be severely high to me. They still are, some are yet to be fully grasped or realized. I am still trying to come to terms with what new realities lay before me. I worry I am overthinking things, but then I also worry I haven’t taken everything into account.
I know I should tell her, but the abject fear of being alone and without her, paralyzes me.