Had another low few days, so haven’t gotten around to writing although hope to get some new things up soon. I went for a run on monday after missing didsbury runners because I saw something shitty and transphobic in the news. Despair washed over me. I wrote about it on facebook, which is where I sometimes scream.
“I was just about to go to Didsbury runners then read this. Citing a single case of assault, the government is telling everyone that all trans women are men. It disturbs me that people don’t speak out against transphobia, feels like this is incubating transphobia. Meanwhile trans women are dying in mens prisons. When I die feel free to drop me down a manhole, just another tranny after all, who gives a fuck.”
It was dark and I didn’t want to stay in all day, its a horrible feeling. I went out and let some stress out on the run, headtorch down the river and through the woods, back upriver, through more woods and around a waterpark.
On the way back I was distracted in my mind and had time to notice my foot hadn’t hit the cround, before it twisted horribly and made a cracking noise, then the rest of me smashed into the floor. Pain washed over me. It was freezing, I was wearing a hoody (something I need to do more when running) so I needed to get moving or call for help.
After cursing the ground and sky and all their lineage for 20 seconds I tried walking. It was painful. After a while though it subsided a bit so carried on, I would walk home but it would be cold.
The pain kept decreasing so I tried running, it was too painful at first so I stopped but then I found I could jog without much pain. That simplified things a lot. I managed to limp jog the 3k back home and had a shower and started the ice pressure and elevation. It is swollen still but not very painful. The tendons are going to be weak for a while but I should be able to keep running I hope. Nothing will stop me from the marathon if I am still here to do it.
Sorry, I don’t think I can take a flattering picture of a swollen ankle!
The good news was that I felt great during the run. The day before I had to cut a long run short as my legs were mysteriously like jelly, the difference was massive. This has happened before but I can usually put it down to something. Poor food, worked too hard day before, not enough rest etc. I was socialising on Saturday and that does take a lot out of me so maybe it is why.
Thank you to everyone who has donated to the LGBT foundation. I am extremely grateful for your support.
Total Training: 254.6k Week 5: 47.8k Week 6: 37.0k
Well that’s 158 miles in my legs.
I was feeling pretty bad the last few weeks so haven’t made a post but glad to be back. I have still been running as you can see. Don’t think anything can stop that, I started in a mental hospital after all so cant get much worse.
Week 5 was my biggest running week in this training cycle
I have to come clean, I bought a gopro. I have wanted one for a long time and since I am going through this transition once, I wanted to document it. Not that I can afford it. So after it came on Monday of week 5 I went out with it and filmed a long run.
The next day I went to a suicide prevention workshop at the LGBT foundation. I wanted to save money so I ended up running there. It’s a little further than I thought , about 6.3k each way. In the end though, running was faster than the tram and cheaper than the bus. So success!
On Thursday I did some hill sprints on the treadcmill at the gym. These were in order to improve my running form. You cant run with poor form when you are going at it up a hill. I noticed a few things during the session that I have been putting into my normal running too, so it was a success! For example I was really driving my knee up to help carry me forwards in the air.
On Sunday I did a 10 mile long run, after getting better at working the camera and getting a chest harness I got to film the whole run in a timelapse. It looks super smooth. I also talked for a bit halfway through and was pleased with how it cam e out. I seemed more confidant than usual even if my male voice upset me. You can see the whole 10 miles in just 6 minutes here.
Let me know what you think. Keeping it simple at moment, I want to get more into video editing and maybe figure out how to mix timelapse in without including the whole run. Unless you want the whole run. Some bits are more beautiful than others and would be better to slow down the timelapse for those sections. Anyway hope you enjoy let me know what you think.
Got a little bit less distance this week, which I will come to later. I did a treadmill run on Tuesday, after I got back from the gym I was in the shower, had just put shampoo in and soap when everything went black. The power cut out, so the shower cut off and it was freezing in my flat. Just had to dry as best I could and wait for the power to come back ( 4 hours! ). Fortunately I have a lot of battery power and torches so could read and see. I got a takeaway pizza as I had no food cooked.
I went to a run and talk organised by Didsbury Runners. It was at one of these events last year that I came out to someone as transgender. This time I didn’t really talk much but was good to see people and get out. I was feeling pretty rubbish so it helped.
On Friday I did a fast 10k. It was very windy so happy with that time and I didn’t push as hard as I intended. Still my 10K PB is from a 21K race so have some time to knock off. Strava says this was my 2nd fastest 10k (44:16) and it felt OK, could have gone a lot further without slowing. I hope you enjoy my run names.
Yesterday I went out intending to do a long run of 11 miles, maybe more, but after 200m or less I could tell something was wrong, I just had no strength in my legs, they were like jelly, so I tried to carry on but turned back eventually. It felt like I was at the end of a marathon, my legs were not strong, which increases injury risk as your joints aren’t suppported properly. I wasn’t out of breath but just felt exhausted. At one point someone thought I was racing them which was quite odd. After persisting for 5k I dragged myself home with my tail between my legs. I aren’t really sure why, possibly from the fast 10k on Friday. Possibly I have been ill. I have had a few days hearing the blood pounding in my head, even though no cold symptoms or anything. My average HR has been high again also. Maybe I am anaemic. Anaemia has happened before during marathon training but I aren’t far in yet. Its just one run so nothing to worry about anyway.
Have now been self medicating on estradiol for a while. Hoping to get some external help but again it will cost money. I will see what happens. After waiting 17 months, to join a 12 month waiting list, I have been told that there may actually be another 11 month waiting list after that. So it seems like the NHS plan is to let trans people commit suicide. Other GIC’s have waiting lists up to 5 years, if this is true then Leeds is almost at 4 years. How do you cut down a 4 year waiting list, well one plan it seems is to turn it into 3 back to back waiting lists. It is unacceptable, I feel like I am treated as a non human by the NHS.
That wasn’t very positive to end on. I went to the LGBT foundation on Saturday and met a friend, Stafani for her birthday. It was super nice to see her, although she beet me at connect 4. I also went to a pod-casting workshop where What the Trans did a live episode. I am a big fan of their podcast and got to meet them after with the GoPro.
My hand was really shaking so you can see how well the stabilisation works in the camera. Mic is very good too. They were amazing, and you dont get to meet your heroes often.
So I was thinking about doing a transgender running podcast in the future 😀 What do you think I should call it?
Hi I know I’ve missed a few posts now. I have just been struggling with things more than usual. I will get a training update for the last 2 weeks and continue my C25K story with week one.
I was at Trans Manchester yesterday and had a good day, even met the makers of “What the Trans” and they talked about how to do a podcast, so maybe even a podcast in the future. I love these two ladies and managed to meet them and film it on the GoPro.
Also was my friends birthday so was good to get out and meet people.
Here’s some interesting data on detransitioning and the importance of recognising someone’s gender identity. If you have heard that GIC’s push people down the path of transitioning, or transgender people encouraging others to transition, you have been grossly misinformed please can people stop “warning” me about this. When I talk to my trans friends they are the most comfortable people with themselves and most introspective individuals I have had the pleasure of meeting, who else has been so true to themselves that they have faced huge amounts of stigma, simply to be themselves. They encourage me only to do whatever is right for me. They don’t care if I am trans or I change my mind. The unanimous advice I recieved from people at the LGBT foundation and trans friends was to be honest at my GIC appointment. If you think we could do this on a whim then you should consider what we have to go through whenever we leave the house. Why am I happy to run through the woods at midnight on ice but scared to use a public toilet.
All of the hallmarks of the homophobic campaigns of the past are being dragged out missing nary a beat. An MP David Davies has encouraged people to listen to transphobic hate groups such as transgender trend. Mumsnet has become a breeding ground of transphobia where conversations of parents of trans children are shut down and organised efforts have potentially caused trans children charity Mermaids to lose lottery funding. This charity’s CEO talks of how she kept suicide watch over her daughter and didn’t want any other parents to go through the same. The funding was to be used to set up support groups and coffee mornings for parents of trans and questioning children to meet. The people who signed that petition prefer trans children to commit suicide rather than be trans. These groups are also buddied up with anti LGBT far right groups in the US. Being LGBT is not “trendy” it isn’t a choice. Good luck bullying someone into being LGBT.
Scratch a transphobe find a racist.
All I am asking is that people be aware that this is going on. It is playing out on the BBC and in the media. It clearly has affected people I know. There is a lot of gaslighting happening people with “concerns” who are constantly on the media saying how much they are silenced by a “powerful transgender lobby”.
Soon in the US it looks like transgender soldiers are going to lose their jobs, this is happening. We are a currently wedge issue for the far right agenda.
I think I need a distraction so I am going to talk about this.
I like zombie films and books. The thing is, I have never been entirely satisfied with one. The closest I have come maybe Pontypool the movie and World War Z the book. It has been like having an itch I can’t scratch. Did you know there’s kind of a word for that. Acnestis is the name for an area of the body you cant reach with your hands, well actually its usually applied to animals but we are animals so there. But that isn’t quite right anyway as I am talking about the kind of itch that isn’t in Acnestis, but no matter how hard you try, scratching doesn’t help. Its like an itch in the fourth dimension
I think my problem is that I am obsessed with the bits that concern the breakdown and fall of civilisation, the kind of stuff that is within the first few chapters, and some films skip entirely. So when I read a book it always slumps after the first few chapters. Then everything is the same. I think World War Z sidestepped this by being a compilation of reports that are around the fall, instead of being about one particular group. Pontypool gets around it by being so interesting aside from the zombie aspect. I recommend everyone watches Pontypool, its not a zombie movie.
It got me thinking about writing a book, I haven’t written a book before, obviously. One of the most powerful things I learnt from running though is that some things can seem out of reach and impossible, ruled out… like running used to be for me, but with enough practice you get good at it. I have been trying to learn to draw and paint and write over the last few months. I keep having a crisis though and losing everything. But maybe if I try it will become a hobby like running.
I watch a youtube channel and really recommend it, its called Peter Draws. I think by repeating what he does anyone can get into drawing.
Like with running we have a preconceived idea of what drawing is. It’s a masterpiece the first go. Effortlessly good. We ignore the fact that they tried and failed so many times that they got good at it. Its about learning to enjoy the failures. Its the same with running. Couch to 5k starts with one minute runs. They feel extremely hard because we push so hard because we think that running means running as fast as someone else. When we actually relax and just enjoy the process of running we realise that we can run and start enjoying it. Masterpieces and speed come later if we ever want them. Maybe we just like doodling?
I want to tell the story of my C25K experience, including how much I weighed the routes I used and how I felt during and after. Fortunately I recorded most of this using GPS and forum posts so I can look back and see what was going on at the time.
To start with, I am 5’11” and weighed well over 105 kg when I started C25K, I was incredibly unfit. I point this out because so many people see me and say I must have always been a runner or fit. That’s a compliment and fine but I feel like a lot of people try to rule themselves out of running by mentally editing my history. And I feel like I worked hard back then so I’m not going to let people forget. Even my family who knew me as unhealthy most of my life say I have always been fit, well this is a photo of me in 2016.
I was working at the Manchester Royal infirmary at the time, I had the best job in the world, which is one that you want to do. I was a research assistant on a project hacking the Kinect, a gaming device, to make it track breathing rates of patients in the hospital. A proof of concept type of study and as a physicist into medicine I loved it. It was strange then that I was suffering from depression, and it was getting worse.
I used to walk the 4 kilometers into work everyday, and enjoyed it whilst listening to a podcast or audiobook. But the depression made this difficult, I would rather stay in bed for 20 more minutes and get a bus. This was one change that seemed to happen without me noticing, and when I did it forced me to think about things. Another was finding it harder to put my shoes on because my belly was just in the way making it hard to breathe. Walking up stairs to my flat left me breathless and sweaty. I kept having to buy larger clothes to stay comfortable. I remember deciding to walk home one day and finding it had become much more difficult, to the extent that I was shaking. Looking in the mirror I would see someone else looking back, this wasn’t me, it wasn’t fair.
I remember sometimes coming home and seeing females running past and becoming sad and depressed. “I will never be like that” I thought and I meant it in two ways. I meant it in the way that I will never be a runner again. I also meant it in the way that I wish I was born female. At the time I focussed on the running aspect, I honestly believed all men wished they were born female, it never crossed my mind that I could be transgender because all I knew about that was that you are born in the wrong body. Well, I was in for a surprise on that front and so was everyone who knew me, but that was for later. I had become resigned to being unfit and unhappy, I had tasted the world and didn’t want anymore of it, I wanted things to be simple, I wanted to be drunk. I was the loneliest person on the planet.
This carried on until the end of March 2016, I found myself in a mental health ward. It was an observation ward, with 4 of us to a room. I think I had gone to A&E because I was feeling suicidal, I had started to self harm again, cutting my arms but after 2 days they let me go, it was on April fools day, haha.. I had to make the decision between ending everything, or trying to get better mentally. With the stakes so high, I thought I have to at least try something, I might aswell right? The main thing I wanted to do at this time was to stop drinking, It had become a crutch to cope with life but I knew if I could ditch that I could make other changes too, drastic changes, but ditching alcohol would also mean facing my thoughts.
Stopping drinking was very hard, I had no brakes because I was suicidal. When you are only thinking a day, week or maybe month ahead you don’t really care about alcoholism. Contrary, actually I just wanted something to come along and kill me. I would drink most nights, I didn’t get drunk on nights before work and could do drink free days but it was getting harder. I had also began self harming again by cutting my arms. If you wanted to find me those days, my hobby was getting blackout drunk in the pub, reading comics. Somehow just by being surrounded by people in the pub I felt less lonely, even if I never talked to anyone.
I could see many benefits of not drinking, I was spending a fortune on alcohol for one thing. It would mean saving a lot of money, I was spending £50 some nights on alcohol. Dieting and losing weight, I was consuming 1,000s of calories through alcohol alone, and even more via obligatory kebabs. Along with this, I could be more active instead of drinking, I could go out for a walk instead of being hungover, burning calories, instead of consuming them.
Once I was free again I looked on-line for a way to start running, there I found the Couch to 5k programme and a lovely community of people who had completed it or were on their own journey through it. And so, about a week before my 28th birthday in April 2016, I ditched the drink and started Couch to 5k. This isn’t a complete success story, I did finish and I did lose a lot of weight, but the alcohol came back. The transformation that happened during these few weeks were incredible however, and it gave me the base fitness to start running again when I once again found myself deeper into a mental hospital almost 8 months later.
This is a brief section of my life, it wasn’t the first time I had tried to get into running, but It was a big lesson for me, and at that time the longest time I managed to stay off alcohol since I was 18.
In future posts I will tell you the details I put on the C25K forum and some of the notes I took on how my dieting was going along with how I remember it. As you can see below, eventually through running I found myself, I am still finding pieces here and there.
I am doing this in the hopes that it encourages others to try C25K as you can tell I really enjoyed doing it, and even though I fell off the wagon, it really helped me start running with just the knowledge that I could still do it. As a very large person, it gave me a lot of self confidence, along with being an overweight runner I also had plenty of scars along my arms that I was extremely self conscious about.
I have seen people in their 60 and 70’s starting and loving C25K, falling in love with running in the process, ant they all believed they were never able to run. If you are thinking of starting it, then why not join in?
Things were looking good this week in terms of the injury. Leg was a little tender on Monday and Tuesday but after then it seems fine. I have also been quite lazy. Only going to the gym once! So this week I intend to finally get an official training plan.
Mentally things have been bad. I had to get some help so went to the GP and he prescribed me Mirtazapine. I needed help with my thoughts and to get to sleep. The pills did work and provided some much needed relief but are a little too powerful and had some bad side effects. I will show you what happened and the effects they seem to have had on parkrun and my resting heart rate. They tend to leave me feeling quite dizzy and clumsy for 24 hours.
This is all a little complicated by the fact I am doing my own HRT, I have no help coming from the NHS nor will my GP check my bloods.
Currently as I write this I’m having the withdrawal effects from the Mirtazapine, something I am unfortunately familiar with, but surprising after just 2 pills with a day off in between. I figure they feel more powerful since I have been off alcohol so long, and the only time I was on them was when I was drinking. The withdrawal effects are hard to explain, currently it is like my skull is groaning like a ships hull as it is crushed in ice. Whenever my heart beats I can hear and feel it in my ear a bit like my ear is letting out gas (it isn’t, don’t worry) but if I am concentrating on something else it isn’t as noticeable which is nice. That is probably why I am up at 1:15 AM writing this. So…………
Monday, I went again with Didsbury Runners, I decided to go on the shorter route this time at 8 minute miles. As I run there 2.5k and back I didnt want to do too much with my leg still a little dodgy. It was nice to meet everyone though and got in 10.2k overall. Apparently it was the largest turnout of Didsbury Runners, which is impressive in the cold.
Tuesday I went to the gym, I think I did an hour on the crosstrainer and came back home.
Wednesday is the day I went to the GP, I didn’t accomplish anything else and took the 1st mirtazapine that night. It got me to sleep so well that I slept for 14 hours, only waking up once for the toilet and getting back to sleep quickly. Usually the past few weeks that has kept me up for another 2 hours at least. Sleep is very important for recovery so this was good for running too.
Thursday, I went to a running injury prevention (unfortunate acronym) event at a private hospital nearby. It was free and one of the Didsbury runners had linked to it on Facebook. There was free food and the even was interesting. First 2 lectures on running injury prevention, which had a lot of new information and I will be looking in more detail. Especially surprised to hear that the current consensus is that stretching and sports massages have no effect on reducing injury risk. Conflicts what I have been practising and preaching here so look forwards to reading into that. Instead they said current advice is to do dynamic stretching and warmup. It does seem like the Spire hospital has a crack team of running specialists. They also showed evidence that running actually reduces the risk of getting bad joints as you age.
Afterwards there were practical exercise session where we did a bit of physio led pilates, which was new to me and some other workouts to help stay injury free. A lot of this I have seen variations of, including buildin up core and activating glutes aswell as improving balance or proprioceprtion, to keep the knees and joints steady as you run so as to avoid injury. All good stuff. Aparently I am good at single leg squats 🙂
I decided to run to this even on thursday and afterwards went for a longish run. I found after a few k I couldnt quite keep up with my old power, something I am blaming entirely on the Mirtazapine. I also had a stomach problem on the run, which I dont usually get fortunately, blame that on the meds too eh?
Thats when I looked at my resting heart rate. It has risen quite high due to all the transphobia related stress from media and online. Usually I expect it to be in the low 40’s when I am training but the day after mirtazapine it spiked low. What us computer chess nerds call a moob.
Also I should point out that 47 and above is high for me, this is what I would expect if I was overtraining and what I was seeing late into training for the Manchester marathon last year. Usually my Resting HR is below 45 during training, when I have stopped training due to injury or before a race it goes to below 40 once I got down to 32 for 1 day.
So I believe my resting heart rate is high due to the anxiety I am having, which I can believe, I can feel it pounding most of the day and it is racing at night as my mind goes over things. So its not surprising the drugs reduced it, because after taking them I felt dulled. I didn’t feel good, I just didn’t really feel, and it was a big relief. I do think there was a further reduction due to the drug itself though. Mainly because that is what I want to blame my poor runs on, the one on thursday and also parkrun.
Saturday, I went to parkrun. After taking the mirtazapine I fell asleep at about 9, unheard of for me. I woke up on time but felt very unsteady due to the drugs. They make me feel a bit like being drunk I suppose but not fun, for example when trying to type I often miss the key I am aiming for, I cant focus my eyes quite so well, etc, this lasts for about 24 hours after taking them. I decided to go anyway, If people were volunteering I had better go! I ran hard and tried to get a PB but it just wasn’t in me, and I am definitely blaming the mirtazapine so there! I still did it in around 21:45 and thanks to Kim for adding me to the results after my barcode seemed to have failed.
So I have been calming myself without drugs and doing some writing, it has been partially successful!
Running video coming soon, and more on my own C25k journey.
Hope everyone is doing well, it has been lovely hearing from people who have started C25K because of my blog, let me know how you are getting on and lots of love to everyone!!!!!!
This one is a bit late, this week was extremely difficult regarding my transition. After a 17 month wait I had my first appointment at the Leeds Gender Identity Clinic (GIC) on Tuesday, which ended up being a triage so I can see a Dr and get help. Now I’m in another waiting list to see the Dr… which will take “12 months maybe more”. My GP wont give me a bridging prescription for HRT and I felt very close to cracking. Will write more about this and what I plan to do separately.
My running has reduced this week. I can feel shin splints beginning in my left leg so taking it easy. Because of this I also went to the Withington Physio to get a sports massage on Friday. They are so nice there and despite not seeing me for months they remembered me and correctly gendered me which was awesome. Recommended to any other LGBT people in Didsbury/Withington area
One of my problems is that my flat is cold most of the time so once I get back from a run I find it very hard to do my usual foam rolling and stretching. This has meant that knots are building up and my muscles are getting stiffer. A sports massage is a good way to help with that, loosening up the muscles and getting the blood flow back to help them recover properly.
Week 3 has therefore been mostly cross training at the gym. I went 5 times and run there and back which adds 1k of running every time. Wednesday I did an hour on the treadmill at the gym with an uphill bit at the end.
I was feeling so lousy and had so little sleep that I missed parkrun on Saturday, which made me feel worse as my running club was doing a parkrun in blue event to raise money for Mind. (Blue Monday)
Sunday I went for a 9k run to celebrate a huge show of solidarity for trans people that spontaneously happened online. After transphobic tweeter Graham Linehan who once wrote Father Ted, petitioned the national lottery to revoke funding for transgender childrens charity Mermaids. A youtuber hbomberguy started a charity stream playing Donkey Kong 64 to completion. He expected to raise around $5,000 however the outpouring of support surprised everyone. In the end raising over $345,000 for Mermaids. The CEO of mermaids joined in at times and talked of how she kept suicide watch over her daughter and why it inspired her to make sure no other parents or children had to suffer in the same way. Later in the stream famous people were coming on to support trans rights including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who won the biggest upset victory in the US 2018 midterm-election. Despite this Graham continues to lie, telling his followers that Mermaids gives untested drugs to children. Mermaids provides support groups, I honestly feel he would prefer trans children to commit suicide rather than get support from Mermaids.
During the stream #ThankyouGraham and #Mermaids trended globally on twitter for unwittingly raising awareness of transphobia and mermaids. This has been the biggest outpour of pro trans sentiment I have ever seen, it was so promising and I was so close to breaking point from transphobia and lack of anything from NHS.
It also got me to go on a run to celebrate feeling OK for the first time in about 3 weeks. Up until this weekend I haven’t been able to go for 10 minutes without all the horrible transphobia going through my mine, like having an imaginary conversation with a TERF, then catching myself doing it. I wake up at night for a wee and then it happens again, my heart races and I can’t get back to sleep. It has truly been horrible.
So that covers week 3, disappointing from the running standpoint but I will get through. Fitness wise I feel good, the break from running over Christmas has improved me somehow, Its just a shame I seem to be getting injured again. More cross-trainer this week. I also want to make another running video!
Here is the link to my fundraising page please help if you can donate.
It was extremely nice to be back with the Didsbury Runners on Monday. It has been 9 weeks since I last made it, due to my injury and being in Skipton/running the Bolton Abbey half. No wonder I missed it so much. I was unsure what group to join but went back into the fast long run group and was glad I did as it felt very manageable. Running there and back as well totalled 15.5k, so a nice long run.
On Tuesday I met a friend in town and say my fist tattoo being done. I also picked up some calligraphy stuff and have been trying that out.
On Wednesday I went on another longish run of 13.2k. This was up-river on a route I used to do a lot. I feel like it has been a long time since I did that route too so it was nice to see all those familiar sights. Speed wise I went a little too fast, but I felt great. I need to slow down a little this week on these long runs as I am feeling it in my legs. At this stage coming back from an injury, slow and steady is the way to go. I have a lot of easy gains as my fitness comes back while pushing too hard only increases my risk of injury.
On Thursday and Friday I ran to the gym and did 1 hour on the cross trainer. I am glad I have that resource to be able to do cardio whilst not pounding my legs. I really want to try and get into cycling for this reason.
On Saturday I was feeling super low, there had been another attack on transgender people by the press. I managed to get out of bed and go to Fletcher Moss parkrun though. This time I wasn’t late. I jogged 2.5k there as a warmup and then went for it. It has been a while since I went for a PB at parkrun but this was one of those times. My watch was just over 21minutes but the official time was 20:59. I am very happy with that as it is a slower course with a hill that you do twice. I was speaking to someone after who said it was about 50 seconds slower for him than South Manchester parkrun so I am nearly on PB shape to get a sub 20 minute 5k. Really feels like the rest and x-mas eating has done me good.
I spoke to people after and then just cried on the way home. When transphobic things like that happen in the press I feel like someone has poured boiling water over me in the city centre, and nobody thinks there is anything wrong with it. It is a traumatic event. It then brings up all the previous times it has happened and just plays around in my mind. I need to start doing mindfulness exercises again as I have lapsed on that front.
I managed to get to Trans Mcr at the LGBT Foundation after parkrun which was helpful and emotional. If transphobic people were witness to the struggles that people go through then they would quickly change their minds. Of course the true phsychopaths would still want to enjoy themselves on twitter or line their pockets by creating a controversy, and as they are cowards there is nothing like punching down. My human rights are not controversial. I did not choose to be trans.
If you don’t know by now, I am raising money for the wonderful LGBT Foundation by running the London Marathon, the training of which I am banging on about here. (See I can be just like Shakespeare) Check out my donation page:
Thank you to everyone who has donated I love you!!!!
Yesterday (Sunday) I could feel some pain in my left leg. It isn’t an injury but I need to back down a bit. So I ran to the gym again (0.5k each way) and did an hour on the crosstrainer. The pain is probably because I haven’t been stretching and foam rolling enough. Primarily because my flat is so cold so the first thing I want to do is shower and wrap up. So I will probably skip Didsbury runners today and go to the gym. I then want to get a sports massage this week, just being proactive. You do learn a lot about listening to your body when you start running for me by going through the full process of getting and injury. This time I can tell that shin splints are likely if I don’t loosen my muscles.
So almost 40k in week 2, I will try to hold at 40k for week 3 slowing down a tad on the easy runs. Still no official plan, sorry, but don’t panic. I need to figure out my limits in this human host body (sarcasm). I am not really from out of space you know….
I have my first appointment at the GIC tomorrow so wish me luck, it has been a long wait. I have been coming across doubt’s analyzing them and overcoming them, which has been nice. The hardest parts are really society and my depression.
I remember a while ago talking to a mental health professional when I was feeling suicidal after getting transphobic abuse on the way to a meeting. One of the problems I came across on this occasion was the fact that they didn’t really attempts to help with my mental health problems, it became a problem of me being transgender, which wasn’t why I was ringing.
This happens in regular health too although I haven’t faced it. It is called “transgender broken arm syndrome”. Where a doctor will ignore your complaints and just focus on the fact that you are transgender. The solution to having a broken arm becomes, “maybe we should reduce your hormones” for example. Or, we don’t want to do that surgery without you coming off hormones for a few weeks. Or a lot of tran’s people report being asked about their medical transition for no reason. “Doctor Doctor I have the flu”. “Oh my! Have you had gender reassignment surgery by the way?”
Anyway, on this occasion the mental health professional told me I should wear headphones when out so I can’t hear people shouting things at me.
This got me wondering recently about what exactly it would take to avoid transphobia in the UK. My answer is I don’t think you can. I worry that people think I am constantly complaining of transgender issues, well I don’t mind. I am writing this as a record for the future and to let people know what I am experiencing. As long as I am honest then its all good.
This king of thing obliterates my mental health. It makes me wonder what people think I am when I am outside. I don’t want to be here any more. People want to make the social cost of transitioning as high as possible. It is almost like being able-ist, “I’ve got my body and happy with it so I’m just going to mock, persecute and demonise those that don’t.” Along with racism, it absolutely disgusts me.
On twitter Graham Linehan, the creator of Father Ted, has made it his mission to spread lies and hatred of transgender people, women in particular. He has a wide audience for this and seems to be getting along with it just fine. He recently managed to set up a petition on mumsnet to get a national lottery award to trans-charity mermaids, to be withheld and currently under review. This money was going to be used to set up a network of coffee groups for parents of transgender children to be able to talk about their experience and inform each other. A prospect Graham Linehan called terrifying.
If you can’t see why this disgusts me then know this.
I have a friend whos’e family disowned her when she came out to them.
She also lost her job and became homeless because she was trans
I don’t know if people have the empathy to put themselves in her shoes and imagine what that feels like. But I can never forgive people who support this transphobia. Tell people being trans is a choice, if they choose that its OK to disown them. Telling people transgender women are sex offenders and worse. I believe they have blood on their hands. It has to stop now, but its getting worse.
So I would have to ignore twitter and mumsnet. But what about this.
I have woken up to transphobia on my radio alarm clock on Radio 4. I wrote about that womens hour episode previouslt so wont bore you with it again.
Today brought another example. The headline “story” for the Daily Telegraph (below). Insinuating that trans women are men, and that we are a threat to cis women on NHS wards. Again I walk down the street and wonder if people are thinking this about me. It’s not hard to imagine, some people do laugh at me, some give me extremely hostile looks. By no means the majority of people. Its a minority, but I have to remind myself of that quite hard. Humans have a negative cognitive bias, you can tell me that, but it’s still there. And one person doing this is too many.
This daily telegraph article is one of many over the last year. Only two days ago, the mail online apologised to mermaids, the charity I mentioned above, for misrepresenting it. In this case implying they were connecting trans kids to foreign HRT drug suppliers.
Two days before that the Independent Press Standards Organisation ruled that a Sunday times article was “misleading” for saying that the gender recognition act reformation could give trans people the rights to use their correct public toilets.
For people who don’t know, we have been able to do this since 2010 according to the equality act. Telling the truth however wouldn’t encourage people to act out against the GRA consultation that was going on last year. Nor draw attention to the fact that this has been happening without a problem since 2010. Nor drive up hatred towards trans people, increasing the social cost of transitioning yet higher. This is pure hate and greed.
Never mind the cost to trans people. In 2013 a trans schoolteacher Lucy Meadows ended her life because of being outed and hounded by the Daily Mail in an article by Richard Littlejohn.
This effects everybody, transgender people and generates more transphobia. I didn’t watch it fortunately but today two hosts of Loose Women had a field day calling trangender women “Men” and saying they should be kept on the mens ward. Why is it only now that this is in the spotlight when for 9 years trans women have been treated on the correct ward? Who watched loose women or read that article and now feels justified and legitimised to hate me?
Next time a friend of mine or myself is forcefully removed, illegally from a womens toilet, punched in the face, or verbally abused in the street for being trans. I know why. All these things have happened to people I know since I came out. I am morally disgusted by these transphobes. For what they are doing for their own benefit. The price that we have to pay and everyone can enjoy vicariously.
Another thing I can’t stand is certain politicians saying this is a toxic debate on both sides. It’s the same with racism and what Trump said about Charlottesville. I am merely existing and being myself. The only way I can appease these bigots is to stop being.