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  • Cynthia Fortlage

Acceptance without Understanding™ - Gender Confirmation Surgery (GCS) - Overdue Update

Sunday, May 9th, 2020 is my two year anniversary of this leap forward to being myself, this is the original post for context and an addendum for a current update and to answer the question asked in the original piece, how would I feel after.

 

As I write this and think about when it will be published, it is mere days away from the biggest choice of my life being lived out. Yes, there are bigger events than coming out, getting divorced, and transitioning in the workplace.


The procedure I call GCS, the short form of Gender Confirmation Surgery, some may refer to it more affirmatively as Gender Affirmation Surgery, or an old an outdated term that is now considered offensive is Sex Re-Assignment Surgery (SRS).


Chocolate Zen Bakery in Winnipeg
Yummy cake from Chocolate Zen Bakery in Winnipeg

This decision is not for everyone either, in fact, less than 15% of Transgender Women actually get gender confirmation surgery or bottom surgery according to studies performed over the last few years.


This decision is also not without controversy within the Transgender community either.


You see the question is, when does a transgender person stop being transgender? Or more specifically stop identifying as Transgender as a label or definition. If all the body parts match and you blend in as a woman, why use the label and the stigma it carries of being Transgender, are you not simply a woman?


The question, of course, is not as simple as I make it sound, rather I use this venue to help folks grasp the concept of acceptance without understanding in unique ways. In fact, I have found through early work with others that I am able to apply acceptance without understanding in people's lives in many diverse ways that I will continue to share those insights.


The answer to the aforementioned question is as unique as the individual. I know folks who choose not to be identified any longer, so in public and private settings, one must be careful not to out someone who has chosen to go stealth for their own reasons. I know others who do not declare they are Transgender but will admit voluntarily they are in discussions and other public venues. Then there are folks like myself who are openly Transgender.


I will admit that I have been challenged to see if my point of view remains the same post-surgery, I can not speak to that yet but I suspect that it won't change, at least for now. I do not have foresight so I can not speak to the future. (See addendum for an answer to this question)


I have learnt the basis of acceptance without understanding through my own lived experiences initially. This one cuts to the core of that understanding.


I will assume much of my story is known if not my old blog has a lot of other posts to help explain that. Check out My Blog.


I was married for 32 years, in year 30 I came out to my ex who told me I had a problem and needed to see someone, I didn't even know I was Transgender at that time.


I saw a professional early 2016 and 4 weeks later realizing I was Transgender I moved out and began to live full time as I wasn't allowed to explore who I was in my home of 30 years.


Love is enough wasn't true in my case. Love and Acceptance is what was missing

How can I go forward and risk going through that again without being open and honest upfront looking for acceptance without understanding in a future relationship? Regardless of how well my physical being presents female in all ways. I am not sure I want to endure that journey if I was to go stealth and I was eventually found out, so looking for acceptance without understanding upfront is critical for me and why I don't think I will cease to acknowledge and identify as Transgender regardless of the success of my transition.


So have you seen ways that acceptance without understanding can be used in your life?

 

Addendum May 9th, 2020


I write this today from my world travels, but due to Covid-19, I am paused on those travels in Colombia, South America.


Due to many reasons some of which include;

  • my ability to have privilege and pass

  • my acceptance into society as a woman

  • my acceptance of myself that may not have fully existed before, and I continue working on even today, it's not all about being a woman.

I see myself as a woman!


If it's a long-form description I am a woman with a transgender history. A woman who had gender privilege for 50 years. A woman who was denied her existence until it was safe to come out.


There are not two of me, the before and present me, there has been only one me.


I am me, all of me, my past, present and future are all me, I always have been!!


It's just taken me a while to do the deep work to figure that out.


Con Amor Y Abrazos de Colombia, Cynthia

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