Archive for January, 2019

New Therapist

Posted January 17, 2019 By kmarrs

We’ll start with the old. I saw my old therapist, Cindy, off and on for some 12 years. I was pregnant with my middle little when we paired up and I started DBT. It was right before I got pregnant that I was diagnosed with BPD. And he’s turning 11 in just a few days so almost 12 years seems pretty on the nose.

And Cindy was/is great. She specializes in BPD and DBT and I adore her. I would not have the skills I have now, if not for her.

But I’m at a point in my life where one of the primary things I want to talk about in therapy is my identity of being queer. (Which is how I choose to sum up my sexuality and gender identity.) And Cindy is not afraid to talk about me being queer, but she has no experience with it personally or with people in her life so she had no practical advice to offer. She had great listening skills, but I need a little more.

So I did a literal google search for trans therapists that are local to me and I found Ruby. I don’t know if she herself is trans. I honestly can’t tell even after a session with her (which is fine) but I do know she has a Master’s in Gender Studies and gender queer people in her life, beyond her own experience. (She did say she is queer. It just hasn’t been defined out. Which again is fine. I don’t need her life story beyond the generalization that she’s qualified in this topic and issue.)

Additionally, she’s also fully versed in BPD a lot like Cindy is. So I’m not completely sacrificing whatever help I need with BPD, just to have someone whom can relate to gender issues.

Anyway, as of now I’m going to start seeing Ruby every Monday after work. My first session was this past Monday, the 14th of January. And I want to talk about it. Not the details of what we talked about, though I will sum it up, but instead the general feel of it all. Why Ruby is the perfect fit for me.

She was just coming in from being outside when it was time to start our session. So we go into her rented office and she starts going around the spacious room and turning on a dozen floor and table lamps. No harsh overhead florescents. Nope. This isn’t a sterile office, this place has a living room feel. There are comfy places to sit with an abundance of pillows and blankets. Rugs on the floor. A play area for children. Huge, wall conquering book cases filled with books. This place just immediately felt like home. Which, as nervous as I was, it put me at ease.

After she turned on all the lights, she sat in her own comfy chair, bent down, and took off her boots revealing fun cat socks. Like. There are just no words. I picked her off this long list of therapists that I found because she was friend shaped. I was delighted to discover that she specialized in what I needed her to specialize in. But the initially what made me go to her website, off the list, was that she just looked warm and friendly. Warm. So warm. So to have her kick off her shoes, which is honestly my person aesthetic, was revoltionary. I didn’t know therapists could do that! From now on, any new therapists I try out, if they don’t kick off their shoes, then they just aren’t for me.

The office. The no shoes. I just felt really safe.

Moving on, though I could spend another 5 paragraphs talking about the no shoes and fun socks…

I’m pretty secure in my gender identity now so while I wanted someone who specializes in it, it won’t be the main focus of therapy. We talked about that some. Most the session was just a brief outline of who I am. Standard first session shit. But we did discuss the goals.

My main objective is to deal with my anger issues I’m finally admitting I have. I… when I’m frustrated by my kids or spouse I turn red with anger and before I even realize I’m doing it, I start yelling. All the fucking time. I don’t want to yell anymore. I need to replace it with something, I don’t know what because the kids don’t listen. But I don’t want to yell anymore. It’s just not how I want my home life to go. So over the next however many weeks and months, Ruby is going to help me learn skills to stop the yelling, and parenting skills as to what I can do in place of it to get the kids to listen.

Cindy probably could have done that for me. But now, with Ruby, when gender issues are on the forefront of my mind, I can bring them up and we can tackle them as a team. It’s not the primary objective of therapy, but it’s still a thing that can coexist.

So every Monday at 4 I’m in therapy with Ruby, who works out of what could easily be a living room, if not for the insurance agent across the hall, and who kicks off her shoes to reveal relatable socks. I’m… it’s a good way to spend my Monday afternoons.

I should have kicked off my own shoes. Next time.

And then after therapy I have a standing dinner date with my dad. Which will make for a long day, but it lets me avoid rush hour traffic in getting home (therapy is on his side of town, my house is decidedly not) and I really should spend more time with him anyways. So this is good. I get home 10 hours after I left it and exhausted, but that’s just how it is sometimes.

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The Blogging Scedule

Posted January 15, 2019 By kmarrs

So here is the plan as I get back into the swing of things.

I will have an ongoing queue of posts that I’ll write in advance that will post on Monday’s at noon est.

But a queue that is a month out doesn’t always work for more time relevant things. Like my Lucas broke his toe last week, and instead of telling you about it when it happened, it was going to end up in my queue and by the time the post when live, it would have been healed. Which is, I guess, fine. But ultimately, is not how I want to run things. I like posting about things as they happen.

So some (every?) weeks there will also be a Thursday post (same time) and it will be more time sensitive. There is no queue for the Thursday posts. As such, some weeks there just may not be one. I can’t plan in advance for exciting or tragic things to happen in life. But at least with the Thursday post, I can talk about it in a timely fashion. Which is the goal.

So TLDR: Every Monday at noon est look for a post from my queue. Most Thursdays at noon est look for a post for current events. If there is no Thursday post it’s because life has been boring that week and there is nothing to talk about. I value the quiet moments though, even if it does make blogging hard.

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Max: A Coming Out Story

Posted January 14, 2019 By kmarrs

The following is an email I sent to my immediate family around October. This was after I’d had one-on-one conversations with everyone. I’ll let the email tell the story.

Hey all,
So the end of the year is fast approaching.  When the new year comes I want to start using my new name (Max) and new pronouns (they/them).  I know some of you might not feel fully comfortable with this, but I’ve spent much of the past 34 years uncomfortable with my name and being female has never sat right with me.  It’s not something I have been open about.  I didn’t know how to approach the subject even inside my own head, much less with others.  I thought that because I wasn’t a boy either, I was just some weird girl.  But now that I know that it’s possible to be neither, I suddenly understand myself in a whole new way.  I’m nonbinary.  I’m a mix of boy and girl and neither.  I feel like Max is a better fit for me, and they/them are my true pronouns.
I know and understand that this will take some getting use to.  That’s why I’m making my intentions clear well in advance.  This way you have a few months to practice before the new year.
I understand that after the new year, you will probably still default to the old way and I may still get called by my birth name.  That’s fair.  But I am asking for honest effort and willingness to correct yourselves and each other, whether I’m there to hear it or not.
There are parts I’m still struggling with, namely my roles in my relationships with those I love.  I’m Pat’s spouse.  Pat has already been getting used to this shift for a bit now.  I will remain mom to the kids, however, not because I take on a motherly role, that’s always been Pat, but since I carried them for 9 months each, I wear that title like a badge of honor.  This might change in the future though.  We’ll see.  Rachel, I’m torn between being your sister and being your sibling.  Sisters in itself is a type of relationship that defines us.  At the same time, part of me really prefers the genernutralness of being your sibling.  Who knows, maybe we can work together and come up with a third option.  Mom (and dad) I know you say I’ll always be your daughter.  But honestly, I never was your daughter.  Your child, but not your daughter.  But at the same time, I need my relationship with you both, more than I need an accurate title in the family.  I’m putting my foot down about my name and pronouns but other than that, I’m picking my battles.
I love you all.  Please consider this over the coming months.  Work through what you need to work through.  I suggest calling me Max in your heads for awhile before you say it out loud.  The silent practice is less startling than the out loud practice and it gives you a chance to privately get used to this.
Also, I’m not making this name change legal anyone soon.  Right now Max is technically a nickname that I strongly and stubbornly prefer. 
Sincerely,Max

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I’m Back!

Posted January 11, 2019 By kmarrs

It’s been a year-long journey and much has happened. I’ll slowly talk about life, one post at a time, one week at a time. I’m trying to get a few scheduled and into the queue. Just know I’m back.

For awhile there the blog was completely gone and showing a “pageok” error. I’m not entirely sure when it poofed. But I have been really sick and really busy so sorta not writing became really not writing and then I just didn’t even look at what was left behind and well, it vanished.

Then I was sad. Then I was pissed. Then I was resigned. But then I went back to pissed and aimed to fix it. Right in the beginning of New Year 2019. You’re looking at the result of over a week of tech support.

But I’m back. And I don’t aim to disappear again. I don’t know how many of you are still around. But whomever is, bare with me while I remember what it is to blog.

First real post goes live Monday afternoon.

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