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My Gender Is My Business

CD Knowles 6 months ago

Dear Knowles,

I didn’t want to go to Thanksgiving at my parent’s house this year for two reasons: they are Trump supporters (which would be fine; I can hold up on my own around that) and I’ve just begun to transition from male to female. I’ve been presenting as female for a while now, but the hormones and other changes are more recent, and since I live in another city and don’t see them often, my family is unaware of my situation. I gave reasonable excuses for my nonappearance. I’m an ER nurse with a busy schedule, but my mother has begun to call me constantly, suspicious that there’s something going on and now she says she and my dad are planning a visit to Boston where I live. This of course freaks me out. Between their Trumpism and my personal decisions about myself, I really don’t want to see them at all and don’t know how to handle it. Thoughts? I really have nothing in common with them and would prefer minimal contact.

Thanks for your help and kindness,

My Gender is My Business

my gender

Dear My Gender,

You are right: your gender is your business and yours alone. However, you will have to deal with it in some way with your family. You have several choices, as far as I see. The most drastic is that you permanently end the relationship. Or that you do this on a wait-and-see basis — you won’t meet with them this year, but you might give in and have a visit the year after. All this would depend on how you feel about yourself and interactions with people as you spend more and more time in your female role. Another thing you might do is let them know about your transition in the most comfortable way for you (email, perhaps) and then let matters take their own course. They will probably go through a gamut of emotions — fury, shame, disgust — before, hopefully, reaching the understanding that love for you, their child, is all that matters. (If they don’t come to this understanding, then it’s their loss, not yours and you will have learned something.) A third possibility is that you inform them of your transition before their trip to Boston and have a friend present to act as a mediator when they arrive. It’s all up to you. The main thing is that you are comfortable enough in your own skin to deal with difficulties as they arise, knowing you have made the right decision for yourself and that you can move forward with happiness and pride no matter what anyone else says. I hope this helps a little.

Best,

CD Knowles

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REACTIONS TO CONCERNED CITIZEN

concerned citizen

Dear Concerned,

Your friend sounds AWESOME. What power! Unlike Knowles, I totally believe people have the ability to do others harm by harnessing the dark forces. There are all sorts of books on it. It’s unbelievable what one can do if one sets one’s mind to it and doesn’t waver. Thank you for bringing this up.

Candace C.., Baltimore, MD

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Dear Concerned,

What a load of crap! The only person stupider than your friend is you. She’s no more dangerous to the community than a newborn kitten. Get a life!

Phil E., Farmington, MO

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Disclaimer: CD Knowles is not a doctor or psychotherapist. Any opinions expressed on Knowles Knows are just that — opinions.

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