Just an FYI, Wolsey is ok that in my memories I refer to him as a girl before he transitioned. My writing is a lot more awkward when I tried to change pronouns he used back then. He knows this and is ok with it (like I am ok with him referring to me as a boy before I transitioned).
Today marks the 30th anniversary of the first day my hubby Wolsey and I got together as more than friends and started dating.
After my first major relationship breakup with another woman a couple months before, I had moved into a room at the same house I had met Wolsey years before. This time I was the one living there and not Wolsey. I hadn’t been around Wolsey for several months due to some shit pulled by my ex-girlfriend to Wolsey, indicating to her that I didn’t want to see her (that will be its own post in the future). During this time, I had jumped four or five jobs in the space of a few months and was working in the paint department of Kmart.
March 17th 1991 started out as a normal day for me as I went to work at Kmart. It had been a long day when I got an announcement over the intercom saying there was a phone call for me on line 3. I remember it with clarity.
I pick up the phone and it is Wolsey’s voice. She seemed excited and maybe a little out of breath. All she asked was what time I was off. I was confused and excited. I hadn’t seen Wolsey in months. I had missed her but I figured she was off dating someone and doing her own thing. Her words to me on the phone were, “Don’t go anywhere.” It was a pretty commanding tone and I agreed to wait.
Twenty minutes later I hear stomping boots coming down the aisle and there she was dressed in a leather jacket, facial piercings, a very tiny shirt that revealed her feminine body quite explicitly, a mohawk, makeup, and the cutest purple crinoline skirt. I was getting off work about this time and she came up and hustled me to her truck and took me home.
We spent the next hour and a half talking where we reestablished contact and smoothed over our friendship. Over the next couple of weeks, we talked a lot and she kept showing up at my room. Wolsey was homeless at the time, but that didn’t bother me. I invited her in to my room and let her stay on my single-wide bed. I left out cans of ravioli, with a can opener and a spoon, for her to eat if she was hungry. Wolsey was always hungry and this was the one thing I knew she liked to eat.
On April 6th she showed up in my window while my friend Bryon was visiting. She waited patiently around, but I could tell she was impatient on Bryon leaving. I think at some point Bryon got the clue and made himself scarce.
For the next two hours she told me about a guy that she was really attracted to and wanted to date. To be honest I was absolutely crushed. I had always been in love with her from the first time I met her. She is who I had originally wanted to date, but we could never get our timing right and I do admit I was terrified. I was a horrible person, before I had dated my ex-girlfriend, Wolsey would invite me out to meet her for coffee and I would chicken out and leave her at the Horseshoe Cafe by herself waiting.
I was such a dick.
But now we had started talking and I had started thinking maybe we could work out. I had gotten my first time sleeping with a woman out of the way with my ex-girlfriend and I wasn’t terrified of girls so now I had been hoping maybe things would work out.
I never mentioned how crushed I was. I just was super supportive of her interest in someone. After all she was my best friend, and I knew that more at the time then I had realized before. However she just kept looking at me weird when I was so supportive of it. She realized I didn’t think it was me and then it became a game.
For two hours she poked me and made me try to guess who she wanted to date. I was an idiot and didn’t realize what she meant and assumed it was another guy much cooler then me. Eventually she told me to shut up and said it was me. I was stunned and couldn’t say anything. I think my brain literally shut down for a moment. All I could hear was static and I was sure I had misheard her. There was no way she was interested in someone as uninteresting as me.
Then she kissed me.
We spent the night together, and honestly we have only slept apart since then we we broke up for a several month period after the following Thanksgiving, and after we got back together we have only ever been apart due to surgeries, or travel for work (which has only been in the last 7 years).
So basically I just need to tell my husband that I love him more than anything, and I am really glad he liked the ravioli I set out on the window sill enough to date me :). It has been an awesome 30 years, and I hope we get another 30 years at least.
I LOVE YOU WOLSEY, more than all of the rest of the universe combined.
Last week I received two very obvious acts of aggression towards being transgender. One was a macro aggression, where someone attacked me verbally (and was going towards physical) and the next day the most obvious type of micro aggression. The sad fact is, the micro aggressions bother me more.
I think the last time I directly talked about dysphoria was back in 2019 (and it was face related). I thought it would get better as I was scheduled for major Facial Feminization Surgery. It did go away a lot, the first and second surgeries were awesome. It never went away fully though.
The first surgery corrected bones, the second cleaned up the first by cleaning up skin, muscle and my upper lip. Both of them I think truly did a great job for me. That being said, I have never gotten rid of the dysphoria, in fact I get it pretty bad now.
The subject is really heavy and probably something I can’t break down in one or two posts. In fact I don’t think I can talk much about my facial dysphoria at the moment (it is surging pretty bad). That being said I can acknowledge logically I am much closer to where I want, I just don’t feel it sometimes.
That is except yesterday. Even struggling with still trying to get my electrolysis done (thanks COVID for fucking that up) my body is shaping up fairly nicely. When I first came out I tried on makeup and immediately freaked out imagining it was what a football linebacker would look like if they put on makeup. The sad part is that observation isn’t wrong.
I am not nailing on myself, I weighed 320+ pounds, had not started hormone replacement therapy, and had stubble of the viking born. It was what it was.
In August of 2018 we had moved to Tacoma, I had just started a job I knew I would transition at but hadn’t come out to work. In fact this was only a week or two after coming out to my friends. I knew I hadn’t lost all my weight, my HRT numbers were in shambles but we tried it anyway. It is a basic feminine bit of clothing and I expected it wouldn’t work yet. I was right.
If I saw another woman (cis or trans) in this photo I would think nothing of it, I would believe that they looked just fine. Sadly I have never been able to judge myself with the same eyes.
The way I looked flipped me out and I felt at that point I would never get to a point where I could accept myself. I realized I had many surgeries and hormones coming but it was a crushing feeling. So bad I deleted all the front-facing photos and the only one I know of that I have left is from me behind. Even now it makes me cringe, even though I would never second guess someone else, my dysphoria has a power over images of me.
It has been two and a half years since then. I still am wracked by dysphoria, but the difference is I have moments I feel whole and complete, or at least close enough. Yesterday I pulled out the same camisole in the above picture (I hadn’t tried it on since the initial picture) and thought I didn’t look too bad (honestly, the 38H chest doesn’t hurt).
The hormones, breast augmentation, and surgeries make me feel like I might get to where I can accept myself. I took a couple of selfies after a long day of work, and I found I was ok with myself.
I know the dysphoria will come back (actually already hit earlier today) but I wanted to share that it isn’t always black feelings towards my look. I just wanted to share my feelings, at least the beginning of my dysphoria.
I do have to admit, I am a little nervous sharing these pictures, but I feel like the camisole works better and maybe things are going well. Not bad for turning 50 this year :).
I have a lot of experience with the medical system. Not just my transition, or my physical problems, but also my experience billing for insurance, running a clinic, etc. I have seen all sorts of ridiculousness.
Right now in my life there are a lot of doctors beyond just the transition. We are still working on the mass on my thyroid, and also the infamous espohagus/stomach issues and my vomiting. Right now we will talk about the esophagus/stomach issues and an example of why capitalistic medical system is bullshit.
I went into Kaiser on January 14th for a test that would trace radioactive material through my esophagus and into my stomach. I got a gastric emptying test, basically a test that detects how quickly my stomach breaks down and passes food through.
The end result was clear (meaning that isn’t the problem). However, the problem I had was the costs. They utilized a plain white bread fried egg white sandwich. No toppings, completely plain except it was coated in a specific radioactive substance that they tracked.
No big deal, the staff were incredibly nice and it tasted like a horribly bland egg sandwich. That is until I got the bill for it. I won’t even cover the cost of the procedure itself, just the cost of the material in the egg sandwich.
I am fortunate, I have medical insurance (an HMO) and they basically “charge” themselves for it. The total bill was about $1,853 or so for the procedure, they wrote off $590.16 to magically pay themselves (and also they still make a profit on that $1,200+ test.
The kicker was the $507.52 charge for the egg sandwich. Yes it is a radiopharmaceutical agent, but there is just something ridiculous about the cost. It appears they probably used Tc-99m Sulfur Colloid which the outdated information I had was $36 per dose. Let me be very generous and say the price increased 2.5 times or more and is $100 per dose.
That means for my sandwhich that should have probably cost $100 + less than $1 for the bread and eggs was a total of $101. Yet they charged me more than five times that much at $507 (and the odds are they got it closer to $50 and it is ten times as much).
This is why the capitalist system is bad for the individual. The government already payed the majority of the R&D (that is a whole other aspect), and yet they are still charging a minimum of 5-10 TIMES more then the cost for an agent that they don’t have to incur any danger with.
It is ridiculous, and I admit my yelling here won’t change anything, but it does make me feel a little better.
The last few days have been hectic, and while I haven’t left the house much since the Tuesday before Christmas (it is now Sunday after), I had two distinctly different experiences being read as a woman.
You heard it right, it seems like twice I have not been clocked, at least not in the beginning.
The first time was more expected by me. The hubby and I were in the grocery store trying to pick up the last bits of food for upcoming Christmas Dinner (on Xmas eve, that is when we celebrate it). It was a wednesday and it wasn’t packed so we hurried on out to Safeway.
As we wandered the aisles, the hubby stepped away to get some cheese I believe. Meanwhile, I was bent over and crouched down reading the different egg nog labels in an end-cap, near a group of Safeway workers who seemed to be hauling stuff from the warehouse.
I couldn’t tell you what caught my attention, but I heard one guy (turned out to be an older, shorter guy) talking to another. I heard him say “Check her out.” I am not sure what made me start to turn and stand up, but I did.
As I turned to stand I could hear the guy start whispering harshly, “Don’t turn around, don’t turn around, don’t look.” Just as the older man finished speaking I had stood up and turned around to see what was going on, just in time for a young man, maybe in his early twenties who was standing next to me, to turn around towards me and bounce off my boobs.
The older man fled, I swear he was almost jogging to get away as I bounced back. I had seen that the younger male hadn’t even heard the older male’s words, instead his face had been fixated on my chest (I forget they are 38H, probably dysphoria) and had been so fixated on seeing what the older guy had done that I think he literally had taken a step forward, not realizing how close I was, or that I was standing up and moving towards him.
The young man’s faced became incredibly red as he quickly apologized and retreated back into the warehouse. Part of me was annoyed, I had never done that as a guy and I found the hubby to bitch about it.
It wasn’t until I was talking with him that I had assumed wrongly. I thought they were checking out the “trans girl”, but he pointed out that no, I probably wasn’t clocked in that short time and they were just acting like guys seeing boobs.
I was both weirdly annoyed and pleased about the situation. No guy should act like that, and being objectified sucks. However, it did help reassure me that maybe someday I can pass more fully. Part of me likes that objectification because it somehow proves my efforts.
The second time happened a couple hours ago when I dumped a couple of bags of garbage and a small light that died. I had gotten out of my car at the garbage area. A small meth-ridden homeless man stopped me and asked me if he could have the light. I had no problem and after talking with him I gave it to him and moved back to my car.
That is when I caught behind the garbage area (it is a walled off area) was a guy that lives in the complex with a large pit/mastiff type dog. He had been watching carefully, and it wasn’t until then that I realized as he smiled and walked off, that he was watching out to make sure I was safe.
Both the hubby and I are pretty sure he hadn’t clocked me, and that he was just making sure that the woman wasn’t harassed by the homeless guy. I almost argued with the hubby that it couldn’t be that, but the hubby was right, I wouldn’t have waited around if a guy was dumping garbage, when I was still a boy, unless something was really wrong.
Evidently the guy with the dog either thought I was cisgender, or maybe he was still worried about my feminine appearance enough that he stayed around anyways to watch over it. Either way I found it strangely nice that he had registered me as someone that needed to be watched over.
Don’t get me wrong, at 6’2″ I don’t think I was in any danger from the homeless guy, but there is something about that treatment that reassures that at least people see a feminine person when they see me. I will undoubtably get tired of the staring at my boob thing in the store, and maybe of the watching over me, but either way, that was twice this week that I was at least partially treated like someone who I feel I am would be treated in this society.
Let’s preface this that I am fucking amused by this, but I had to post because I evidently need attention this morning 🙂
Evidently, I am in Facebook jail and am serving 19 more hours here. I have been out defending a bunch of transgender people (specifically two trans guys), and it turns out Facebook doesn’t want to support when people are called slurs using the T word, or various other debasing words.
The sad fact of the people I most recently got into a flame war with, one of them was an older white man attacking the trans guys, and a middle-aged trans woman attacking another trans guy. Fuck them both and their racist, sexist and transphobic asses (yes, a trans person can be transphobic). Also, I probably have a soft spot for trans guys… not sure why that is…
I must have really pissed one of them off as I have gotten more than two dozen comments of mine reported (new and older), but they only upheld two of them. The weird part is the two of them are not the harshest comments I have made. So not sure what the algorithm’s decision was.
The first was for evidently performing hate speech on myself… yes on myself.
We were in a discussion about using random cans as measuring cups. The original poster called himself a hillbilly and I mentioned yep not only hillbilly (ok it was hillybilly, that was autocorrect) I continued to say, 100% poor white trash from the trailer park here and we had something similar… evidently that counts as hate speech on myself. How the fuck is that hate speech?
The second one was maybe a little more appropriate, although I don’t think harassment and bullying when the person originally started calling me names (including calling me an “it”) and I called them an idjit and said “fuck you”. But hey, they are an old white male, why not defend them Facebook, I am sure you don’t think calling someone an “it” is harassment.
I don’t feel bad about telling him to fuck off, nor do I feel bad about Facebook Jail. I actually hate Facebook with a passion, but several of my friends and family don’t use any other social media source so it is what I use.
I will try and remember to post when I do the submitting of comments for hate speech against trans and other LGBTQ/minorities and give you the resulting mincing of “doesn’t go against our services”. I didn’t think of doing that, and now I am kind of too lazy to search for it to show older ones.
Also, if I get dumped off Facebook (or maybe even rage quit) that isn’t a big deal either. I have lots of other social media presence and maybe I won’t be so stressed.
I just wanted to share on social media, about my social media jail in a specific platform (I wonder if this effects my instagram… I suspect not).
So, you haven’t seen CoaA posts yet, have you? Well, that is because that stands for “Confessions of an Asshole” and this is my first post. Mostly it means that like other people I talk about here, I also will talk about my own failings, including when I am absolutely the asshole. Sadly that happens more often than I like to admit, especially when I was younger.
I felt the first thing I would talk about was my wedding day and the fact that my husband, who was my wife at the time, should have probably just dumped me there and then. Also, I will probably reference “my wife” because it is hard to separate who we were then. I find myself having a very hard time referencing him as him when I remember the small girl or shapely woman in the memories. He is ok that I reference him like this, just like I am ok that he references me as his husband whenever he talks about our past.
Our wedding was itself actually pretty great for what it was. The asshole part didn’t come until it was over, but it was still unacceptable, 100% unacceptable.
I had originally asked my husband to marry me when we first started dating in the summer of 1991. We lived on Alabama Street in the 1900 St apartments. I was working 2 shifts on, one shift off for weeks straight and when I asked her to marry me, she said no. I knew she wasn’t into marriage to begin with, and I suspect subconsciously I knew she was starting to pull away so I probably felt that would help things.
Fast forward two months and we had broken up, then got back together six months after that. By this time we ended up living on Kulshan Street I believe, and she surprised me by asking me to marry her. I agreed immediately.
We decided we didn’t want a big marriage, we were just going to a judge with a few friends and family and get it done. Wolsey was an atheist (just coming out of new age stuff) while I was a weird mix of buddhist and catholic, but nether of us wanted a church wedding. We also didn’t want any sort of debt, we were poor and we both knew that her father and mother weren’t going to pay for it (and even if they did we wouldn’t accept the strings with it).
So fast forward to the day of our ceremony. We celebrate (and have since renewed our vows) our wedding day on Halloween. In 1992 unfortunately Halloween fell on a Saturday (much like this year), meaning we had to have a judge marry us on a very dark, wet, and stormy Friday. I was freaking out in my head. Not because I thought marrying that beautiful girl was bad, but I thought I was bad for her, and that honestly, I didn’t deserve any of it. She calmed me down and we proceeded.
We showed up with Wolsey’s family, my mother, siblings, our friend Aaron who was the best man. We showed up at the courtroom of Judge Ross, a man with a huge handlebar mustache. He quickly and dryly started going through the ceremony, it was probably the most anticlimatic ceremony you would ever see. That is until Judge Ross stared at the papers in front of him, stopped talking as he looked up at me and looked around the room.
We all sort of looked around confused when he asked me… IN MID CEREMONY… “Are you related to John Bradley?”
My mom froze, I froze, Wolsey froze and everyone else just looked confused. This is where the judge started talking about how he had issued a warrant for my father John Bradley’s arrest. I think this time it was about my dad beating the shit out of a couple officers when he was drunk, and not paying the fines. The bailiff looked around and I know they checked outside the door as well. This took a few minutes until it was clear my dad wasn’t here. He asked a couple of times if my dad was here or if we knew where he was.
Of course we said we didn’t know where he was, but the truth was my dad was waiting downstairs in the car. We all knew he had a warrant, but none of us imagined that Judge Ross would interrupt our marriage ceremony for that, especially if my dad wasn’t there.
After some more awkwardness, he continued the ceremony and we finished it off. It was both anti-climatic and very awkward. However to me, it didn’t matter, I was married to the most beautiful person in the world, and I was happy, but also freaked out even more than my wife was now stuck with me.
As a gift to us after the wedding, Wolsey’s parents took us to dinner at the Top of the Tower in Bellingham. For Bellingham it is considered one of the nicest restaurants in the county. My stress level was incredibly high at the moment, and when we stepped into the building that the restaurant was in, caught the elevator to the top of the building, and got out, I was fairly overwhelmed. I had never been to the dining side of a four-star restaurant. Not as a customer (I had worked as a dishwasher/prep cook at the Marina restaurant a couple years before, but never sat in a booth). Below are Wolsey’s parents Clark and Debbie.
To be honest, as someone who had been homeless with his family for years, and for many years before and after that we were evicted constantly, with our food mostly provided by food stamps, the whole aura of the restaurant was too much. I don’t think I talked too much as we sat down to have dinner.
To be honest I had fully disassociated at this point. At the time I never knew that people didn’t get out of body feelings when they were stressed, my life had been full of violence, alcoholism, homelessness and poverty. I thought it was normal. That happened here.
I don’t recall most of what we talked about over that dinner. I do however remember getting a check from Wolsey’s parents for $500. It was far more money than we had at the $4.25 an hour or so we made, also something we immediately used to pay bills.
We were sitting there and I do remember one clear thing. I got a black coffee placed in front of me, a small container of sugar, and a small ramekin filled with what I thought was whipped cream. I hesitated and was confused about why we got whipped cream with our coffee. At home we had milk and instant coffee, I had never heard of this… maybe it was a dessert coffee you get at the beginning of a meal?
Wolsey noticed my hesitation and squeezed my leg under the table. I don’t know if it was purely for reassurance of if she was trying to indicate what the whipped cream was for. That is when I saw her father watching me intently, he then reached over to his coffee, took a spoonful of what I thought was whipped cream, and put it in his coffee, thereby lightening it.
I noticed that Wolsey’s mother Debbie hesitated and looked confused when she saw Clark put what turned out to be creamer in his coffee. She asked him why did he use creamer, he NEVER uses creamer, he just sort of waved her off and said he wanted some tonight. She looked pretty confused.
I immediately followed suit and noticed he gave me the slightest nod of the head and a subtle smile as I used it. I was a little astonished that it was cream. I had never seen cream for coffee like this. I later found out that Wolsey’s dad doesn’t use creamer (and I remember something about it sometimes gives him migraines even). That is when we both realized Wolsey’s dad did that just to show me what it was, without embarressing me. There are a lot of issues (a whole lot) I have with that man, but I have to say I really appreciated that.
The meal itself I assume was good, but like most times when I am disassociated I don’t remember the exact details. Wolsey’s mom didn’t notice at all, but I think Clark did.
To be honest, the rest of this story is embarrassing for me, but I deserve to be embarrassed by it. I don’t remember 100% of the details as I don’t think I ever really came back to myself that night. That disassociation or weird emotional space however IS NOT AN EXCUSE, it is just so you can understand me a little better.
We eventually got back to our new apartment on Bennett street. By this time Wolsey was feeling sick, her nose had started running and she was feeling ill. I think for the first couple of minutes I tried reassuring her a little, but it was too little for what I should have done, and far too short of a time I gave her my attention.
Instead of being fully supportive like any real human would have done, I was frustrated and vented about our wedding night being destroyed because she got sick. I was one hundred percent inappropriate, and while the details are scattered for me, I know I yelled at her and became even more frustrated that we couldn’t be intimate on our wedding night. Yes, I had fully become that privileged guy with “expectations”.
I was an absolute shithead about it. I do remember bits of her crying, and of me just getting angrier. I had a lot of rage, most of it I suspect was from other things that I constantly buried. None of it was because of anything she had done. For whatever asshole and monstrous reason inside me though, I let that rage and anger out and I know I yelled at her, made her cry, I was unreasonable on every level (I have never hit my spouse, but I pretty much was abusive in every other way that night). Most of the detail of this part of the night is gone for me, I don’t think I ever remembered specifically my lashing out, but I do remember bits as if I was in a detached dream.
It was a strange detachment though. I was so angry, but it was an anger that seemed like it was outside of me. One that I knew I should bury, put out or hide it away, but I just shrugged and I didn’t do anything to really control it except I eventually told her off, slammed the door, and left the apartment. I ended up going to Bear’s, the local arcade with my friends. I don’t really know if they ever knew what happened, all I did was tell them she was sick.
Yep, that is the asshole in me, out at an arcade playing video games with my friends while my sick wife cried to herself in our bedroom on my wedding night. I feel vaguely guilty that I can’t remember more details to show truly what kind of asshole I was, but this is the best I can give you.
I am eternally shamed by that night. There are no excuses for it. I just wanted to talk about my wedding night, and I don’t feel I should ever leave out negative things about myself. I definitely won’t ever forgive myself for how I behaved on my wedding night.
Today I (hopefully we) celebrate 28 years of being married. Today marks the day that at age 21, I married my 20-year-old best friend, lover, and confidant.
I want to wax poetic about the day we got married and the whole situation of our relationship, but I will do that at a later point. Right now I just want to express how happy I am to be here 28 years later after he asked me to marry him and I said yes.
Our lives have had a lot of struggle and pain, but I still feel I won life by marrying him. The fact he stayed married to me after I was particularly shitty on our wedding night shows how much he loves me. That post is coming soon, yes I am honest about my shitty behavior as well.
He means everything to me. He is my best friend, my favorite lover, my favorite author, mechanic, cheesecake model, all of it.
I am not joking when I say he has saved my life multiple times since I got to k now him at the age of 16. I can’t imagine my life without him now, I suspect I will be one of those spouses who wouldn’t survive very long without him.
I love you my heart. I would do anything for you. Just say the words. Oh, and once again, Happy Anniversary my love!!!
I can’t tell you how much I love you…. except to say Forever.