Wednesday, July 17, 2013


I have a Confession.  I'm a Fraud.

First some background, and a warning- this one gets deep.

In my last blog entry, I revealed that I told my Wife that I was transitioning.  Since that time, I've received so many wonderful comments and messages of support. 

I quote:

"Thank you for sharing your life for us and for being as bold as you are in charging forward in the world."  Karin July1992

"You are one of the reasons why I keep going, why I am determined to stay on the road that I know will only cross my path again and again every time I purge and turn my back on it... [cut]
It will be nerve wrecking for me as it will be my first time out interacting with others as Emma. I will keep your strength in mind. I will remind myself of how you went through the same struggles and how you managed to tackle the obstacles."   Emma Rose Claybourne

These are comments on the above cited entry, but I've received similar ones on Facebook and privately as well.

And I Really appreciate them! 

Some more background:  I'm a former paramedic.  From 1984 through 1990, I was a member of a volunteer Ambulance and a volunteer Rescue Squad.  I've crawled into wrecked cars and run into burning buildings.

Even more background:  Growing up, I learned how to fight for several reasons.  One was that I was tired of being picked on.  Second was that I had (and still have) a VERY big mouth.  And third, fighting was a way of proving my manhood to all and sundry and suppressing my feminine side.  Hmmm does that sound familiar?  (I've discussed it before.)  Got my ass beat a lot too.

Now let's define some terms.  All according to the Oxford Dictionary.  And I quote:

  • the ability to do something that frightens one:she called on all her courage to face the ordeal
  • strength in the face of pain or grief:he fought his illness with great courage
  • courageous behavior or character.
  • wrongful or criminal deception intended to result in financial or personal gain:he was convicted of fraud prosecutions for social security frauds
  • a person or thing intended to deceive others, typically by unjustifiably claiming or being credited with accomplishments or qualities:mediums exposed as tricksters and frauds

Courage is strapping on a gun and wearing a badge as a Police officer. Working as a professional firefighter. Carrying a weapon into combat. Teaching children despite vocal opposition to same.  Protesting Injustices in the face of organized opposition that is determined to silence you.

Having shown examples, provided background and defined terms, I again say: I'm a Fraud.

Fraud, Fake, Charlatan, Phony?


For all of my words, for all the encouragement, for all I've done...

of my

I'm so scared of the future that I want to cower and hide in a corner somewhere.  I want to pull the covers over my head and wish it would all go away. 

Pray for the Thunder and the Rain to quietly pass me by.

  • an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat:

So for all the kind words, for all the support, how can someone labeled as Courageous, so brave, Boldly Going and all that, be so f**king Afraid?

Of what am I afraid? 

I'm afraid of being a Woman in a Man's world.  And worse, not even being a natal a woman- a Transwoman: an object of derision, irrational hatred, scorn, prejudice. 

I'm afraid of losing my marriage, my Daughter, my job, everything.

I'm afraid of crying Alone, of dying Alone.

But most of all, I'm afraid to live one more day as a male.  Of living this Lie.

Yes, I ran into burning buildings.  Yes, I am transitioning.  Yes, I fought people far bigger than me, especially when they were picking on someone defenseless. 

Yes, I told my Wife about who I am, what I am, and what I intend to do.

Courage?  Bravery?  Bull. 


These things needed to be done.  There were no other choices in the matter. 

People may have been trapped in those buildings, and I had the training and gear to possibly save them.  Those being picked upon needed a defender.  "If not me, then who?"

I can no longer live as a male.

Is doing what is Necessary being courageous, or just survival?

Can NOT doing what is Necessary be deemed cowardice?

Is being Afraid showing Cowardice?

Some would argue that to NOT be afraid of Transition would be Insanity.  I'd agree.  Still others argue that Transition itself is insanity.

So is my Fear the logical emotion in this situation, Mr. Spock?

Can Logic even be applied to a situation where every rational person would argue against these actions? 

Well, not every person.  Medical professionals are beginning to understand the need.  Mental health professionals work with people coping with this Pain every day.  And my fellow Transpersons?  They understand the rationality of transition... its inevitability... its Necessity.

So, I guess my argument comes down to this:  Is it Courage or Necessity to Live as one Needs to Live?  Is it bravery to be true to oneself, or is it necessity?

I can't answer that for you, dear reader.

I can't answer it for myself.

Perhaps Necessity begets Courage? 

I wanted to end this entry with an inspiring quote, perhaps from Shakespeare, so I went searching for one.

I found this page.  And on it I found a quote from some guy named Marion.

Courage is being scared to death - but saddling up anyway.   John Wayne.

I guess the discussion goes on...




  1. You are just doing what you have to do. There is no need for medals and awards, your reward will just be being able to live your life without the pain of being in the wrong gender/body. The fear you are experiencing and the pain will be from the difficult coming out process, as it moves farther along, and the potential fallout from that among people that are important to you. You are right, in the end you are just doing what is necessary for you so all the fear, pain, uncertainty etc. are justified. You would only be a coward and a fraud if you continued to live you do now in your male life as so many do with no hope for a way out. To them your painful growth process shows heroic courage and bravery and if by telling your story you can inspire anyone to break out of their own hellish prison of a fraudulent life, then you have done a great thing. Your own reward will be the peace you feel not having to live 2 lives, hide anymore and being comfortable in your own skin. I only hope it goes smoothly for you and do not lose much along the way.

  2. Sophie, I'm not a huge John Wayne, but I think that's a good quote.

    It's a cliche, but it's true: courage isn't the absence of fear, courage is feeling the fear and doing it anyway.

    Having doubts and fears doesn't mean you're not brave. It means you're smart enough to know that reaching for your goals isn't easy and that there will be challenges.

    Trying to be your best true self is the most courageous thing. That's what you're doing.

  3. Sophie -

    There is wisdom in the words of Marion Michael Morrison....

    Doing what must be done is the courageous thing. Not doing it would make you a coward.


  4. Sophie,

    First of all: YOU are not a fraud. You are going through the steps to become yourself. You are showing bravery and courage! That's a lot more than some of us are doing, including myself!

    This lead me to my second point: I am a fraud! I have known for 39 years that I am a girl/woman living in a boy's/man's body, yet I have done absolutely nothing to be true to myself. When I say I am a fraud, I mean I am a fraud to myself, to my family, my wife, my children, my co-workers and my friends. I have known since I was 5 years old when I spent an entire summer in a dress I found in my grandmother's attic, that I was meant to be a girl. Granted, I emulated what society expects girls/women to wear. Still, wearing a dress, which was "reserved" for girls, felt like the most natural thing in the world. And thus, my journey with being different than the rest of the boys in my all boy school, being different than the rest of every male I ever came in contact with began. On the same token, it was a journey knowing that I was just like the girls across town in the all girl school, knowing that I am just like every woman I come in contact with. But I am the only one who knows! I am a fraud because I don't reveal my true self to the world. I am a fraud because of my fears, my insecurities, my lack of courage. Will I ever be true to myself? That is the million dollar question!
    I have every intention to make a first step towards being true to myself in September when I am going to attend SCC. I am not there yet, but my intentions are still to attend. Will a be too scared, too insecure, too not true to myself to actually step out of my vehicle, walk across the hotel parking lot, into the lobby, look for the SCC registration desk as my true self? As Emma?

    Sophie, you are light-years ahead of me! You have made the necessary steps to be who you really are. You have made the sacrifices! I understand a lot are yet to come, but you have done it! You are on your way and are at the point of no return! I have not made any sacrifices. Short of spending money on female things only to throw them in the trash a couple of months later when I am overcome with guilt, I have not made any real sacrifices.

    YOU, my friend, are brave! YOU are courageous!

    I really hope that I follow through on my trip to SCC. And if I do, I really hope that I get to meet you. One of my heroes!



  5. Sophie, the hell you're not courageous. I'd have to say you're far more courageous and brave than I am.

    You've taken that step in the midst of fear and are going through with your decision anyway. It will be hard to say which way you're going, and I still worry for you. I only hope and wish the best life for you wherever your Path takes you.

    I still hide behind career and male privilege and slip in and out of gender presentations mostly as I please. Now, *that's* feeling like a fraud. On the other hand, my path to transition led to a potential abyss and I was scared shitless where it was likely going to take me, so I took the step back and have learned to balance my own gender tides. You, OTOH, plow on.

    Love to you.

  6. I fully share Sirena's wish for you, "the best life for you wherever your path takes you." You are courageous, let there be no doubt.

    You will be in my thoughts and prayers as you go forward...

    Warm Hugs,