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|Transgender woman writes Dear Abby for relationship advice|
|Written by Dyana Bagby|
|Thursday, 30 August 2012 15:06|
Advice columnist Dear Abby has long been a supporter of LGBT equality, coming out in 2007 in support of same-sex marriage. And since about 2005, the syndicated columnist in some 1,400 newspapers, has taken on topics in her column dealing with gay and lesbian issues.
This week, Jeanne Phillips — aka Abigail Van Buren — tries to help "Lost Angel," a transgender woman who has been in a long-term relationship with a woman, including through her transition, but now finds herself sexually attracted to men.
I read the question in the Aug. 29 print edition of the Atlanta Journal Constitution, but couldn't find it during a quick search on the paper's website. Of course, Dear Abby has her own website so here's the question and the answer she gave. And how about Dear Abby talking about serious transgender issues? This is about as mainstream as fireworks on the Fourth of July or Ann Romney being a fan of "Modern Family."
DEAR ABBY: I am a confused transwoman. I have been in a committed relationship for years with a woman who knew me before "the change." I have lied to myself for a long time about what gender I have been attracted to, and now it's coming back to haunt me.
As I have gone through several years changing, my confidence and emotional depth have grown. I successfully transitioned two years ago, and live and work as a woman. This means when I go to clubs and bars with other girlfriends, I attract male attention in a positive way. (I'm attractive and pass well.)
The problem is, my attraction to women is fading and men are now much more appealing. My pulse races at the idea of spending time in the company of men, but no longer with women, who are now more like sisters than anything else.
My relationship with my current female spouse has become that of a housemate or female family member. She was there for me during my changes, and now I feel I am evolving away from her. This upsets me, and I know it upsets her because we have talked about the possibility that this might occur. Now I'm worried about breaking her heart, but feel if I don't move on, I will have cheated myself out of living.
What should I do? Should I swallow my feelings and stay with her, or admit that in order to feel like a heterosexual woman I must leave and be in a relationship with a man? Help! -- LOST ANGEL
DEAR LOST: I discussed your letter with Denise Leclair, the executive director of the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE), who tells me that what you're experiencing is not unusual. Transgender people can be so consumed with gender issues that they are sometimes unfocused on whom they are really attracted to.
While I can't make this decision for you, you can get some helpful input from IFGE. Founded in 1987, it offers support and educational services for and about gender-variant persons -- including referrals to medical and psychological professionals. You can email IFGE at [email protected]
Any transgender women out there who want to offer up some advice to Lost Angel? If so, post them in the comment section below.
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