Caitlyn Jenner: The best transgender woman that money can buy

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My thoughts exactly. Bravo on mentioning the struggles of trans youth. We need action Caitlyn, not jus words.

words are all i have

It wasn’t so long ago when Caitlyn Jenner brought me to tears. Now she just bores me to tears.

patti dawn swansson patti dawn swansson

I didn’t watch the ESPY gala from Tinseltown on Wednesday night, in part because I find most awards shows to be bling-is-the-thing exercises in excess, much like Hollywood itself, but also due to the fact Jenner would be receiving the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage.

To be clear, I have no quarrel with Jenner being saluted for her courage in transitioning from Bruce Jenner to Caitlyn.

There are many layers to courage. Marching off to war takes courage. Racing into a burning building to save a life takes courage. Smiling in the face of a terminal illness takes courage. But being true to one’s self can also take courage. Any out gay person can tell you that, because they have faced and conquered the fear. It is a…

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Black is the New Black

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A Little Trans Soap Boxing

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I’m not questioning Caitlyn’s sincerity, but I do believe she is doing nothing but being self serving and attention seeking.

Big splashy coming outs like hers have a way of failing tragically, I’m not wishing that on her, but I’m still waiting for it to happen anyways.

That Trans Guy Tyler

So Caitlyn Jenner finally came out. Ok, yeah, she technically came out a few weeks ago, but until the last few days, she hadn’t revealed a name or a pronoun preference. Now she has. As a result, a lot of people are calling her a hero, applauding her bravery. Melissa commented that it must feel nice to have such a big name “on our side”. So now Caitlyn Jenner is the face of transgender people everywhere.

Caitlyn Jenner didn’t open any doors for the trans community. What she did was open the blinds of one house in the trans community. She is one woman with one experience and we come from a myriad of backgrounds. I support Caitlyn. I’m happy that she’s happy. I believe everyone deserves his or her chance to be happy and to be true to themselves. But I don’t believe that Caitlyn has or is going…

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Michael Bailey Is A Danger to Trans Kids – Those Kids Know Who They Are

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Liz - Day By Day

Recently, on another forum, some individuals were defending Michael Bailey’s utter BS that Bailey was using to defend reparative therapy being used on trans kids. There are a lot of problems with Michael Bailey’s nonsense, not the least of which is that he may be nearly as bad as Zucker up in Canada.

Bailey claims that 80% of all trans identified kids never transition and settle into their lives as their birth sex. But the 80% figure is, as Bailey admits, decades old. It is also highly flawed. The core flaw in that study? Children were being actively discouraged from their gender identity (reparative therapy) and Bailey and his henchmen failed to followup after age 18 to see if these people stayed in their birth gender their entire lives or if they subsequently transitioned as adults. I personally know two older transwomen who Bailey claimed to have “cured”. They said they…

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Support Elliott DeLine Creating Transgender Literature!

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My favorite trans* writer. Signal boosting this…

The Trans Buddy Program Is Transforming Healthcare

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We waited in the thick summer air, just outside the emergency room entrance. The parking garage was mostly empty, no one passed by, and the only sound was the rhythmic sliding of the automatic doors at our backs.  Others may have been scared by the emptiness of the night; to us, standing outside of the ER seemed far more comfortable than the alternative: entering the hospital.  We debated whether our health was worth the risk of being told again, “We can’t help you here.”

This experience is not new to me. I had been receiving calls for medical advice on a weekly basis from transgender people who were scared to go to the hospital. As an out transgender graduate student and Associate Director of The Program for LGBTI Health at Vanderbilt University, many local transgender people had heard that I could help them find a doctor. For several years, Program…

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Control. I think it’s what transition has been all about for me. An exercise in extreme control to the point that it took me the better part of two years of HRT, not to mention all that lead up to it to come out fully to my parents and my brother. Control to the point that I’m not out fully to my own child. Control to the point that I can count on one hand the people that know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

And in the end it’s control that’s holding me back. My last transition attempt was such a disaster I responded this time by tightlly controlling every aspect I could of transition and now that I’m all but fulltime, it’s actually holding me back. It’s the fear of losing control over who knows what and what they’ll do with that information that’s keeping me from taking that big step forward.

It’s control that I see starting to negatively affect my relationships. I can’t move forward with Michael, even if it is just to fail. Even that feels better then a fantasyland relationship that will never happen as long as the world still perceives me as male. It’s the delicate relationship I maintain with my son that will undoubtly suffer by not being completely honest about this issue and what it means for him.

Despite all that, I can’t seem to let go. My son has asked to see my therapist with me a number of times, and yet it would involve admitting that I even have a son to him. It was control and the fear of him not being willing to help me that lead me to exclude any mention of my son for the nearly three years I’ve been seeing him. Now my fear is in having to admit that I lied, by omission, but lied none the less.

I think I have everything under control and yet the reality is I have nothing under control and yet I can’t see to let go and just be Ryleigh. It’s not that I don’t want to, I think I just fear losing control and that is actually what’s controlling me.

I hate it.

Why can’t I just be fulltime?


I woke up this morning. It seemed urgent that the dogs needed to be let out. It occurred to me the pink shirt and pink and blue pj bottoms were just a bit “too girly” for me to be wearing outside? Why? I leave the house most of the time in full on tomboy mode, makeup and all and don’t even flinch. I rummaged around for what I felt was an acceptable top and found a t-shirt after a couple tries that didn’t make me look all that girly. And I suppose that’s the problem, pretty much anymore, anything makes me look girly. That’s what I wanted right?

Why is it that 99% of the time, I can just be myself – be Ryleigh (yeah another name change, I know)? But for that 1% I can’t seem to pull the trigger as it were. I mean workwise, most people have their suspicions at the very least so its not like it would be a complete bombshell. I get gendered female by patients on such a regular basis it’s not even an emotional high anymore. Much to the point that I’m totally cool being regarded as female, but the fact that some people find me an attractive female is still taking some getting used to. My therapist wanted me to write about the pros and cons of being female, so I guess that’s what this is supposed to be.

I like my body, save for the one small part I dread. I’ve been thinking about it lately and I remember for most of my life and especially as a gay man, it always seemed odd to me, to be on my body without ever connecting it to my gender dysphoria. I mean I liked seeing it on other boys/men, but it always seemed odd and out of place on me. Now that I have a mostly female body, it seems even more out of place. I know that without taking that final leap, it will follow me to the grave and be a source of discomfort for the rest of my life. Oddly enough, at the same time I worry about the size of my breasts, I’ve had decent development on HRT and they’re definitely female breasts, but yet I still feel the need for a BA.

Acknowledging my female identity at work would end so much of my co-workers confusion. It hasn’t held me back professionally, as I’ve been promoted in the short time I’ve been there and I seem to be progressing well in my career, so I don’t have any fears there. Quite the opposite, coming out with my female identity would at the very least give me a shot with Michael and possibly others. I don’t have the feelings I have for Michael towards anyone else, but to everyone (Michael included) I’m a guy, though a bit on the odd side, I’m still a guy. I want a chance at a relationship with Michael. I’m not as boy crazy as I used to be about him, but I still have feelings for him that I want to feel free to be open about. If I don’t come out as female, my life with Michael will only ever be a fantasy (maybe TMI, but he’s the only guy I ever fantasize about).

I confuse so many patients by my presentation, and yet it’s my most male moment that I can muster. I’ve been mam’ed on multiple occasions or referred to as her or she (like the patient who told my partner “she’s got really cool hair”), I even had a patient flirt with me. Acknowledging my female identity at work wouldn’t change that, but it would allow me to change my work id, with my male name, that would make that less weird for everyone I suppose. I need to do this for me, and not for them though.

I resent having to portray myself as male, to the point that I wear the same boxers and t-shirt for days or even weeks at a time when I’m in male mode. I would never even think about doing that as Ryleigh. I know it can’t be healthy for me. If that’s true, not being Ryleigh all the time would actually be bad for my health.

I’ve been delicate with the issue with my family. I know I have their support, but I’m not being maybe as pushy as I need to be on this issue. That I need to do this for me, that its going to take some getting used to and it’s just time to move forward. I think I’m afraid of losing their support. They’ve known this was always an issue and yet I’ve never moved this forward with it before.

Lastly, and it’s probably the ghosts of my past transition more then anything else, I fear losing control of that aspect of my life when I’m fully open about myself. Things didn’t go well the last time, and though I’m a different person, I still worry about the past coming back to haunt me.

Fear is, or can be, a healthy motivator. In this case, I worry it’s paralyzing me. I don’t know how to move forward.

Inside Out, A Trans Documentary

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InsideOut Photo 1 Contrary to some hopeful rumors, I continue to breathe and move about the world. Not in a Kwai Chang Caine way where I skulk about the countryside involving myself in strangers lives and use to slow paced Kung Fu to solve all their problems, but nevertheless, I am here. I did take a little hiatus from blogging after I ran out of things to say that I haven’t already covered. In the mean time while I dream up and concoct some new spins on things you were only dimly aware of and not that interested in, I’d like to use my now cobwebby space here to let you know about a way you and 79,999 of your friends can change the world. Without further ado, I present your golden opportunity join the burgeoning crowd sourcing industry and lend your support to a worthy trans project.

Wanted: 80,000 People to Change…

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Introducing Rainbows At Play!

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Raising My Rainbow

It all started years ago when we went looking for other families like our own — families raising gender bending boys who like wearing skirts and playing with dolls.


We came up with nothing…until we found each other.  Every day we are grateful for the relationships that have developed between our families.  We’ve always been aware that we have it good and, now, we are giddy as hell to help other families connect.

This blog post marks the official launch of Rainbows At Play.  Rainbows At Play is an online community that connects families raising gender nonconforming kids so they can playdate and find fierceness in numbers.


Here’s how to join:

  1. You must be a primary caregiver of a differently gendered child.  (If you are not raising a child, please don’t join the community.  Help us keep Rainbows At Play kiddos and families safe by only joining if you…

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