The Subversive | Volume Four


Number 4


“This journal exists to promote the concept that each human is a unique individual, intrinsically entitled with an equal right to pursue her own destiny as far as it does not inhibit others in that same right.  The Subversive shall serve as a ready forum for the free expression and exchange of ideas that do not violate this mandate, in the belief that tolerance grows from a familiarity with variety.”


Melanie Anne Phillips, Editor


The Subversive is available FREE as a download on America Online, Compuserve, Genie, several servers on the Internet, and various BBS around the world.

For those who wish to contribute articles, stories, personal experiences, information, jokes, or whatever Email on Internet, or write to:

Melanie Anne Phillips

150 East Olive Avenue

Suite 203

Burbank, California 91502

Only original material will be accepted unless quoted in the context of an original work or submitted with credit to the original author along with permission to reprint the material.

NOTE: It is my desire to make this publication available free to all who wish to read it.  However, due to copyright laws, any overall license would allow unscrupulous individuals to excerpt portions and use it for their own personal gain.  Therefore, should you wish to upload this publication on your BBS or simply generate hardcopies for support groups and friends, please write me about a free specific license for your purpose. 



From: Karen Day

To:     Melanie XX

Thank-you for clearance to give the Gender groups here the Newsletters. There’s one TS and one TV group. I’ll hand over a hardcopy of the newsletters with instructions to keep them complete.

I will be attending my first TS meeting this Saturday morning. It’s a small group of about 8 I’m told. I have become pretty good friends with the leader, we have clicked on many, many thoughts. In fact, it’s the first time I really noted a difference. The TV group leader & I had problems discussing the “deeper” issues every time we met, so we keep it pretty superficial in that dept now. Sharon & I hit it off on every level the very first hour we spoke. This I suppose should tell me something … truth is I’ve always had these feelings but didn’t like to SAY it, since I never saw any real possibilities…that is slowly changing. Although I’m not going to rush out quite yet and announce myself. I’ll work on zapping the beard, losing weight and making new friends first. Then, well, we’ll see what happens. (I’ve waited 35 years, I may as well TRY to be methodical at this point)

Things are definitely improving for me Melanie. I have done things, gone places and met people I never would have dreamed of just 4 weeks ago. It’s been like the breaking of a dam. My very first outing to buy a wig turned into a wonderful experience. The woman who did the fitting is a former co-worker. She was my bosses secretary for 4 years at a radio station I worked at. She was THRILLED and we got along so well. Since we’ve been able to talk a few times. Armed with the proper attire, I finally went for a morning walk in the daylight on Labour day. It was a holiday and few people were up, but it felt so good not be hiding in the dark shadows at 3am. I can’t say I’d “pass” at noon hour, but that will come in time. Last weekend I was at a gender meeting at a hospital at 8pm, I was able to go dressed. A lot has happened in a few short weeks, my emotions have been on a big roller coaster. One day I want to start a transition as soon as possible, run over tell my family and live my life the way I want to. Then I think, no…better to cool off a bit first and prepare properly for whatever decision comes, when the time is RIGHT. My only real regret is that I didn’t have this kind of support when I was 20, when I was dressing a lot and walking alone on the streets at night. But I won’t lament my past life, rather try to enjoy my new found piece of freedom and see where it all goes one step at a time.

My most sincere thanks to you. It was the AOL group that allowed me to find the Ottawa gender groups and to learn about the possibilities from those like yourself who have found happiness and know it is real. It’s to know that the possibility IS real and to conquer the fears, there I will find peace.


Karen 🙂


From: Debbie M1

To:     Melanie XX

Dear Melanie,

It’s been so long since I’ve last written to you and much has happened since then. I would like to say thank you for dropping a little note to me and, yes, I very much appreciate the opportunity to fill you in on what’s been happening.

You were probably aware of my not being online for a considerable length of time earlier this year. A lot of things happened back then Melanie. I was saving up money so that I could make my move, a bit of setback for my parents and I had to bail them out, a number of freelance jobs came in, a summer teaching opportunity as well as my introducing a number of new courses. It has been a long, hard year and now I’m back into the thick of the regular academic year.

I stayed away from AOL for awhile and, at one time or another, considered dropping out altogether, if it wasn’t for Anna. She kept writing to me, letting me know how much I was missed and that I would be welcome back at anytime. I really appreciated that. In July, I was finally able to move out and be on my own. After 37 years, I had finally left home! It’s a beautiful little apartment Melanie. I have a gorgeous view of Lake Ontario up on the eighth floor. It’s quiet, with all the comforts of home and much more. I enjoy it very much here.

When I first moved out, I nearly went crazy. All those years of hiding in the bathroom at home, dressing whenever I could and then taking everything off within 2 hours didn’t change overnight. For the first two weeks, I had to wear everything (including makeup) that I had at least once a day.. I nervously watched the door to my apartment thinking that it was going to fly open and people would see me… it took almost 4 days to get me out of the bathroom! But I eventually learned to relax and I enjoy the difference now. I just feel happier now. I learned that I do not have to get dressed to the nines to be feminine… a simple T-shirt can do. My wig doesn’t have to be fluffed out every 5 minutes… put it up in ponytail! Little things Melanie… that’s what I discovered I liked doing. It was me. It’s my life and it’s now a routine.

After I moved into my apartment and as I became more active on AOL, I had the good fortune of meeting another Canadian here and that made things all that much better for me. Because for all the people and friends that I have here, none of them were close to home and I longed for someone who was. I met Karen Day by sending her a simple note to say Hi and, since then, we have not missed a day in writing to each other! Karen lives within 6 hours driving time from here and that is very reassuring for me. There’s more… we’ve also found that we have a lot in common, that we share similar feelings and concerns, that we are making the same discoveries as we progress and explore that same path that you have already taken. Knowing that I have a very good friend here has really helped Melanie… We are already planning to meet someday and we are hoping to start phoning each other once in awhile next month.

Much remains to be done… I’ve taught myself so much in such a short period of time. The photo that I sent you is evidence of that… but there’s more. Lynda J1 has been helping me, and yes, I intend to follow through on her advice. I’ve just recently joined a support group near here and I hope, I just pray and hope, that I will be lucky enough to find someone who is as supportive as Karen is. I am buying clothes… casual clothes. I now know where to shop without fear, and it won’t be too much longer before I will be able to take my first steps into the world. As far as electrolysis goes and seeing a counsellor is concerned, these are goals that I hope to start in the new year. I am just simply setting my own pace and I am enjoying everything… especially life.

That’s about everything in a nutshell Melanie… I have so much more to talk about but I’ll save it for another time. There is much that I don’t know and I hope that I may be able to prevail upon you to help me. Thank you so much for all of the work and dedication that you have put into the conference and The Gender News and, more recently, The Subversive. Reading your diaries is an inspiration for myself and, I’m sure, for many others as well.

Thanks again Melanie.




From: Denese F

What can I say about the past two days.  I have never been on an  emotional roller coaster like this.  This is 48 hours that I would never want to relive, and yet I know that there will be more of

these roller coaster days as my transition into womanhood becomes a reality.It started on Thursday.  I had a great morning.  I felt good and  after lunch I had a nice talk with Melanie.  I was on top of the  world.  That’s where the downward trend began.

About the time I hung the telephone up, a coworker asked to see me  in her work area.  I asked what’s up.  She said, “How are you feeling?”  I replied, “Great!”.  Then it began.  She said “I heard a rumor and I know that to get the truth you should get it from the horses mouth.”  I replied, “What did you hear?”  Her reply, “That you were going to have a sexchange.”I asked where she heard this.  She said across the hall.  I thought Oh boy!  I said yes, but it is not to be general knowledge just yet.  She said it was being discussed and she had overheard it.I went and found Candy and said that I needed to talk with her.

When she got off break, she came and got me and said lets go.  We went into the conference room where she laid it out.Just after I saw her, the Branch Chief came and found her and said you are to call Natalie Clark, The Labor Relations Specialist, ASAP.This is where she found out that the District Director’s office had been bombarded with phone calls all afternoon asking if this was true.  He finally, called Natalie and said he wanted it stopped right now.I do not know who found out and started the talk which spread like wildfire.  I was told that people noticed the longer hair and my budding breasts.   They put 2 and 2 together and assumed that good old me was going to have a sex change.  They were right, but they sure assumed a whole lot.It was suggested that I stay in the branch, I really should not worry about breaks and maybe I should eat my lunch at my desk.

This is not a happy solution for me, but like she said, “Out of sight, out of mind!”  I don’t buy that, but it will do for the minute.I came home last night and I was one upset person.  I really was

ticked off.  I went to my scheduled basketball practice, mostly to help take the edge off the frustration.  I came home and after a hot shower did not sleep a whole lot.I got up this morning and I went to work.  I was not a real happy camper, but I thought, what the hell, it will make the day go faster.  I was just getting to my desk when a manager that will cause me a problem came up and said, “Well, when are you going to retire?”  I said, “Maybe tomorrow”.  Her reply was “GOOD!” and she turned and went back to her office.  My first thought was not very

lady like.I did what would normally take me 6 hours or so in about 2.  I then went to my acting supervisor, and said “I am taking 6 hours leave,  I may be back Monday, or I may not”.  He asked what was wrong, and this is a real nice person.  I replied ask Candy and I left.

I got home and I was totally irrational.  I was furious, and I kept thinking, “How dare them to judge me.”  “What the hell do they know about what I have been through.”  I was totally bent out of shape.  I then took a short nap, or tried to, and gave it some serious thought.  I decided that “THOSE BASTARDS ARE NOT GOING TO BEAT ME.”

I am now more resolved than ever to succeed and to succeed on my present job.  It was beyond me how these good church going people could judge me on a subject that they have no experience.I got up and went and got my nails done.  I then went and put two new wigs in layaway.  The hell with all of them.  DENESE LIVES AND WILL SOON COME OUT AND SHE WILL BE READY FOR A FIGHT, IF THE NEED ARISES!

I called the office this afternoon and the managers had finished their meeting with the Labor Relations Specialist and the Counselor from our Employee Assistance Plan.  The meeting has been moved to this coming Thursday afternoon.Once this is properly explained, maybe things will calm down.  I do know that I am not going to take any crap from anybody over this.I am so pleased with the way my breasts have developed so far.  I mean I won’t have to wear the prostheses, like I thought that I would and most likely fill a Ccup before full time begins in late

October or early November.  But right now, I wish that they were tiny little pebbles that were not noticeable under my clothes so that I would have more time to prepare for full time.  Not so much in the emotional sense, but in the getting everything that I wanted in clothing and accessories, etc.I guess that you can’t have your cake and eat it too.  So the hell with it, onward towards full time and I hope that the emotions settle down for a little while.

I hope to see you Sunday.





Melanie Anne Phillips, Editor

“Remembering to Forget”

I’ve gone through nearly five years since the first moment I seriously considered becoming a woman.  I’ve had hormone therapy, RLT, SRS and learned to pass so well, that close friends are amazed if I tell them of my past.  I get wolf whistles, horn honks and heads turning most everywhere I go.  So what is it that makes me still feel like a man in woman’s clothing?

No matter how successful I was, no matter how accepted I became, I still could not shake that inner feeling that something was missing, that somehow I was not the same as other women.  And I desperately wanted to be.  What more could I do?  What else could I be?

Then it hit me:  You can’t become someone only by being like they are, but must also NOT be like they AREN’T.

What does this mean?  It means that people and roles are not only defined by what the INCLUDE but also by what they EXCLUDE.  But for me, this goes against the grain!  Becoming a woman should be an ADDITION to my life, not a DELETION of any sort!

Any yet, I knew it was true.  All I had to do was look around me at some of the other TVs and TSs I knew.  How many times have you seen a gorgeous CD who slinks up to the bar and says, “Gimme a beer!”?  There may be any number of ways a woman might order a drink, but that is definitely not one of them!  The point being, this person had done all the right things to be completely passable, but had ALSO done something that was specifically not part of the role.

This is fine for passing, but what about for my mental state?  Was there something I was doing MENTALLY that I needed to stop?

Yes there was.  I was keeping the memory of Dave alive.

You see, all through transition, especially AFTER surgery, I enjoyed my new role by constantly comparing it to the old.  Every morning when I awoke, my hands would find their way to the new smoothness between my legs and I would smile, thinking back to how it USED to be and how much better it was now.  Then, throughout the day, every time a stranger accepted me, every time I attracted the interest of a man, I thought about how that never would have happened before, and the strangeness that it should happen now.  What irony!  What magic!  What a mistake!!!

I was engaging in a mental activity that no woman has ever gone through.  My whole euphoric experience was built on patterns of thought that were not appropriate to the feminine role.  I had been everything a woman MUST be, but was still being something they MUST NOT!  In a sense, I had not become a woman at all, but only a very successful transsexual.

But to give that up!  To let go of that comparison that brought so much pleasure.  What an emotional loss!  Did I really want to do that?  Who would know but me.  Who, indeed….

Suddenly I realized that all through transition I had been telling everyone I met that I used to be a guy.  I even carried an old photo of a bearded me in my purse to whip out and shock people.  I enjoyed that.  To me it was measurement of my success as to just how shocked they were.  Every time it happened, I felt so PROUD of myself – so accomplished – so SPECIAL.  And therein lies the problem.  If I based my “specialness” on having been a man, that man would always be a part of me.

I had a lot of justifications for telling, of course.  Mostly, it seemed the only truly honest thing to do.  After all, I really WAS a man before, and wouldn’t it be lying to keep it hidden?  In fact, the closer the friend, the bigger the lie it would be.

Well, from a logical standpoint, that is true.  Physically, I WAS a man.  But what about the emotional side?  Did I ever FEEL like a man, no.  Did I ever THINK like a man, no.  Did I ever THINK OF MYSELF as a man, no.  I never felt like a woman either, but only because I didn’t know what a woman was supposed to feel like.  But for sure, I never felt like a man.

And what was my purpose here?  To revel in a job well done?  To have a way to become the center of attention at any party?  Surely those are interesting powers and temptations, but was it what I really wanted for my life?  Was it the kind of person I had fought so hard to be?  No.

Then what was I to do?  Did I need to hit myself over the head and become an amnesiac, waking up in some unknown park, wandering the streets of a strange city, then begin a new life never knowing of my male past?  Maybe in the Twilight Zone, but not in Burbank.  They don’t allow that kind of thing here.

So how do you go about intentionally forgetting something anyway?  Well, it depends on what you are trying to forget.  Okay, then, what was I trying to forget?  That I ever was a man?  Not really…  I don’t think I could EVER forget THAT! What then?  What else was there?  If not facts…  Ah!  That was it!  I didn’t want to forget the I WAS a man, I wanted to forget what it FELT like to be a man!

All right… so how do you go about forgetting feelings?  Well, actually, it happens by itself.  The more you find yourself separated from situations that created those feelings, the less you will remember them UNLESS YOU CONSCIOUSLY KEEP THOSE MEMORIES ALIVE.

That was my problem, I had not let go.  I was constantly regenerating those feelings by the very act of comparing the present ones to the old ones.  Each time I did this I dredged up the old feelings and gave them new life.

The solution was simple: let it go.

Once I realized this, implementation was easy.  When I awoke each morning, I still might examine the female nature of my body, but not so that I might compare, rather so I might simply enjoy it for what it was.  On the street I would simply smile to myself in response to a wolf whistle because it made me feel good to be attractive.  At work, my conversations lingered less and less on the gender aspects of my history and more on the things I had done, the place I had gone, and the current and future activities I was engaged in.

And I made a commitment: to begin to lie.

No longer will I share my story with new friends or acquaintances.  Depending on the situation, there are some who will find out, either by circumstance or from others, but they will NOT FIND OUT FROM ME.  When I speak of my past, I will no longer temper the truth by saying, “when I was a child”, but will bold-faced state “when I was a little girl” AND MEAN IT.  Because although it may be a lie in terms of logic, it is God’s honest truth in terms of feelings.

This week I have made an appointment to change my school records to Melanie from Dave, and I am beginning the process of altering my birth certificate and obtaining a legal name change.  I have spoken with a counselor, and will be registering for the spring semester for continuing education at the community college.  On Monday, I’m calling Parks and Recreation to find out how I can volunteer to help backstage at the local amateur theatre.  And all of the new people I meet will only know me as Melanie.

Does this mean I will no longer write about transition and gender or no longer be involved in the community?  No, the KNOWLEDGE I gained is valuable and is the basis for my current and future career.  I intend to expand my efforts in these areas and explore the relationships between the genders as far as I can.  But all this will be done under the name Phillips that I was born with, whereas all my personal relationships will know me only under my step-father’s name that I have used since I was nine.

It may not be a perfect solution, but with the nature of my work and my career, a perfect solution is not possible.  Yet it is a far better solution than I HAD been employing.

Now…  now that all this is said and done, how do I FEEL?  I feel like all the woman I ever wanted to be, because although I know I used to be a man, I can’t seem to remember what it used to feel like.

Copyright 1992, Melanie Anne Phillips


And now for the third installment in a serialized presentation of the book:




Melanie Anne Phillips


The pages beneath, chronicle my 18 month journey from a life as an apparently normal husband and father to that of an apparently  normal woman.  In the hope of capturing the immediacy of this emotional trip into the unknown, I shunned the retrospective approach, opting instead for a daily Diary.

Each entry was made on the day the events actually happened, expect as noted.  And each is filled with the raw and unpolished thoughts and feelings that held me at that moment.

Of course, this leads to a somewhat meandering story, as well as contradictions in my point-of-view and personal emotional outbursts that I’m sure will make me squirm once this is published.  But anything less would be less than truthful.  And if this document is to serve any purpose as either a tool for tolerance and understanding or as an inspiration to those contemplating any major life-change, then it must be completely honest.

October 2, 1989

Today was my long awaited lab test session with Dr. Smith.  First off was the blood sample – they left me with none….  Next was the EKG, an interesting test not for the procedure but the protocol.  During previous EKGs with other doctors I was simply bare chested.  But here, they gave me a disposable paper “blouse” to preserve modesty, a commodity reserved exclusively to women.  So, Indeed, an interesting change in society’s attitude toward my person is beginning to congeal, even if only for the moment in the artificially created environment of my doctor’s office.

And yet another aspect of my visit was most complex in its simplicity.  Chris, the male nurse, had previously mentioned that some of his patients had never come “dressed” and he wondered what they looked like as women.  So, I brought a long a coupla photos for him to see – me done up with wig and all.  He said, “Very nice.” but then, “When are you going to start growing your hair?”  Now, on the surface, it was a simple question.  But the ramifications….  What he MEANT was:  1) That the course I was following would make long hair a necessity very soon, and I had better start growing it now.  I hadn’t fully emotionally realized how quickly things were going to happen once they got started, but this really drove it home.  2)  That it is not only okay for me to have long and sensuous hair, but desirable as part of my image.  The concept of dressing and appearing in a manner that would attract men is only now beginning to creep into my conscious thought.  Whether or not I am attracted to men is beside the point.  If I am to truly become a woman, THEY will be attracted to ME!

I thought about this last point all the way home.  And during the evening could often be caught checking my minimal profile out in the mirror and wondering what it would be like to be lusted after….  Oh, well….

October 4, 1989

It’s kind of a strange day.  I’ve been off the hormones since Dr. Smith told me to go “cold turkey” until he got a base-line blood panel.  That was only two weeks ago, but the depressions I’ve felt are largely due, I believe, to the lowering of the hormone levels.  Indeed, it feels like “super PMS”!

So as soon as I came back from the blood sampling two days ago, I popped a Premarin pill and took another that night.  I know of at least one TS whose doctor prescribes that exact dose, and without the injections it should be safe enough.

It only took until this afternoon to see results.  My emotional stability is back to its usually cheery self.  And my bust development which had diminished noticeably puffed right back up to new heights.  I suspect that is fat redistribution rather than any growth in real breast tissue, as it happened too quickly, but I’ll take it whatever it is!

Of course my doctor would frown at this,  but I just can’t wait until next Monday when I get my complete physical exam and hopefully my new prescription.

Strangely, just before the puffiness kicked in, early in the afternoon, I felt certain male-oriented thoughts creeping into my mind.  At one point, I wanted nothing more than to cut my long fingernails back to the quick and dive in the mud after a football.  I wonder whether I would have had that thought if the estrogen levels were still high.  For that matter, just how much is my thinking influenced or altered by the introduction of these hormones and suppression of others?  I’m not sure any definitive study has been done, but it is possible that my resolve to be female would evaporate if I went off the medication fro a say month or two?  Would I have already drifted out of the yearning cycle and come back to enjoying the male life as I have done so many times before?  Is this need that leads me into hormone use strengthened by that very use in a vicious circle that masks the true level of my intent and becomes a self-feeding, self-fulfilling prophecy?  Sure, why not?

But then, what do I do?  Do I quit entirely and let the demon brew filter from my system, finally releasing my mind to its true and natural course?  Hell, no!  But I will always wonder how I would really feel if I had gone off the juice and let equilibrium re-establish itself.  A question for the ages, as if they cared….

October 8, 1989

Title:  “Tarzan in a Teapot”: The human interest story of a small boy who, when he hears the kettle whistle, believes he has the Lord of the Jungle trapped inside.  Erma Bombeck, look out!

Well, enough frivolity, as they say.  Here’s the semi-regular, semi-daily report:

Last night was the first time anyone who has always known me as Dave has seen me as Melanie.  To be sure, I have shown pictures to many of my friends, but I know that they are able to disassociate that svelte creature from any connection with my male self quite easily.  But the actual confrontation face to face would necessitate a complete re-evaluation of how they saw and related to me.  So it was with utmost trepidation that I waited for the moment to begin my preparations for my debut with Mark and Juniko at my support group meeting.

For the entire morning, I moped about the house, unable to concentrate on anything, terrified of the vulnerability of stripping away my defenses and exposing my inner being to those I most care about.  I had made arrangements with Mary and my Dad to take the kids out to the park at about two o’clock so I could dress unmolested.  And at 1:55 I found myself alone with the clock ticking.

I had not dressed as Melanie in three weeks, and it took some time before I felt comfortable presenting myself in that fashion.  To help take the rust off, I had arranged to meet a post-op friend from my support group for dinner so I could ease into the role, which always requires several hours for the defenses to melt.

At 4:00 I arrived at Natalie’s apartment and spent just a few moments in general conversation before we left.  Natalie drove us to a small coffee shop where she and Barbara, her post-op roommate, are known and accepted.  So in addition to feeling that I passed casual inspection by the clientele, the waitress was also not a problem as she was used to this kind of thing with Natalie.

We spoke of many things, not always related to the gender issue, but that subject was indeed the most potent.  This was the first deep conversation I have had with a post-op, and we explored the most intimate aspects of the transition process.

Natalie had lost a wife and family of two children in the journey.  Happiness still alludes her, but that is tempered with a deep inner comfort that makes it bearable.  There are obviously many tears to be shed along the way, but if you truly are transsexual, the undeniable need almost pulls you along in spite of yourself, and no amount of pain is great enough to dissuade you from your course.

By the time we returned to her apartment, I had loosened up considerably.  We spent perhaps half an hour discussing music, families, and futures.  Then it was time to go.

I arrived before Mark and Juniko did, and found that it was much easier to break into conversation and present myself without second guessing that it had been on either of my two previous meetings there.  In fact, instead of artificially raising my voice to a feminine pitch, I spoke in my usual tone, but with feminine annunciation and affectation.  The voice seemed passable enough with those at the meeting, but they are much more tolerant than the public at large.  Soon I must run some kind of independent test to see if my normal speaking voice is high enough to pass.

When Mark and Juniko arrived as scheduled at 7:00 I rose to greet them.  The Moment of Truth had come.  But then it was gone again.  It actually never happened.  I was amazed that they registered no apparent shock.  They greeted me in the same openly affectionate manner they always had, and I found myself easily being Melanie in front of them.  Indeed, all of the fear and nervousness was for naught, as they were neither revolted nor I embarrassed or ashamed.

We had the opportunity to talk for several minutes before the meeting began.  Strangely, the relationship hardly changed at all.  I still cracked the same awful jokes, they still ribbed and kidded. The only real differences seemed to be in the subject areas I was now allowed to participate in.  And I was allowed to react in whatever manner I chose without fear of ridicule.

The meeting was loosely called to order for the “workshop” portion of the evening.  This is a two hour lecture/discussion/question-answer period to help people understand themselves and others, and how they fit in the general scheme of sex/gender.

As usual, there were only about five of us for the workshop, and it IS rather boring.  But I could see that both of my friends were trying sincerely not just to absorb the information, but to truly understand what their friend was going through.  They were both insightful in their questions and candid with their answers.

Toward the end of the workshop, people began to drift in for the “rap session”, a “round robin” where each person is encouraged to explain as much or as little of his or her situation to the group for guidance, support or just to open up and let it all out.  About half the group each month is repeats and the others, new faces or infrequent attendees.  Each has tale to tell, and not of them have had a smooth time of it.

An interesting side note:  During the rap session, I mentioned I was sitting under the air conditioning vent and thought I was catching cold.  Shortly thereafter, Mark got up and left.  Moments later, that was a nudge to my shoulder.  I looked up and he had returned from his car with a sweater for me to wear.  I revelled both in the thrill of being “looked after” in a manner that never would have even been thought of with me as Dave, and also in the status with my group of having my friend treat me publicly as the woman I will soon become.  I gladly accepted the sweater and draped it over my shoulders for the remainder of the discussion.  And I must admit, the comfort of that sweater was almost as warm as the glow inside me.

Several hours later, we had all had our say and broke up for the “social” portion of the evening, where we are free to intermingle and hob nob with whomever about whatever.  There, I had my second long discussion with a more progressed transsexual and found many similarities between her and myself.  I suspect a friendship may grow there.

Mark and Juniko spent time both with me and alone with others, truly finding the humanity behind the carnival and pathos.  However, I kept waiting for that moment when our relationship would irrevocably change:  that cataclysmic instant in which everything would be altered forever.  But there was to be no cathartic explosion, no thunderous bolt.  I suddenly realized that I had already been reclassified by my friends and our relationship had not suffered for it.  Yes, I sense a slight separation between Mark and myself that I had never felt before.  But is not one of diminished feeling, but one of respectful distance that occurs between most friends of opposite gender.  So our feelings of friendship are as strong or stronger than ever, but the comraderie is no longer a part of it.

However, Juniko is much closer now, both in a mental and physical sense.  We share an occasional private smile and an unspoken sense of “being on the same team”.  In fact, that very neatly defines the feeling.  It is as if I had been on a professional sports team and just got traded.  I still have the greatest affection for my former team mates, but now am developing closer ties with the new ones.  This was driven home just before I drove home for the evening.  As I parted company with them on the front walk, Mark did not offer the traditional handshake he usually had, however Juniko gave me a sisterly hug.

So I seem to be already partway through the transition as the mental state suffers considerably more during that period and the body takes care of itself.  I know it is a long and sad road ahead of me.  But with true friends like Mark and Juniko who care for the inner person that they have come to know, I am sure I can withstand whatever demons leap from the shadows on the path to my destiny.  I love them both and will cherish their friendship forever.

October 9th, 1989

134 days to live.  That’s what Dave has.  For on my natural birthday, February twentieth, nineteen hundred and ninety, I will go full-time as Melanie and Dave will cease to exist. 

I shall morning his passing.  He’s a pretty nice guy.  I think perhaps to celebrate his wake I’ll take Melanie to dinner.

Today was THE day:  the day that I finally bean hormone therapy again under a doctor’s supervision.  But this time, it is part of a program.  THE program, so this is THE day.

Dr. Smith is the one who signs the letter to Dr. Biber giving the recommendation for surgery.  And Dr. Smith is the one who will guide my physical transition into womanhood.

One week ago I was given the blood panel, EKG, and chest X-ray.  Today, the complete physical and a reading of the results.

I arrived at the doctor’s office right on time at 10:15 am.  And after  brief meeting with Chris, was ushered into an examining room and told to remove all my clothes.  I was given a large paper towel with which to cover the lover half, and that silly paper shirt, that upper modesty should prevail.  I considered not wearing the paper blouse as Chris had said it was optional, but relented to my pragmatic side which insisted I might as well get used to this kind of thing.

So I waited alone for thirty minutes.

Finally, Dr. Smith came in and went over the lab results: almost perfect, down the line, except for slightly high cholesterol, which initiated a low-cholesteral diet.  AS far as bodily functions my private flirtation with “hot” B.C. pills, followed by the Hollywood doctor’s “hormone roulette” had not inflicted noticeable damage.  In Dr. Smith’s words, I was “starting clean”.

Chris was called in to take notes, and Dr. Smith gave me the most thorough physical examination of my life, discovering a slightly bent spine, congenital blockage in the left nasal cavity, and “numerous quiescent internal hemorrhoids”.  Bleech!

I was shown how to do a monthly breast self-examination, and was pleased to hear the diagnosis of Gynacomastia, with “breast buds” of 4cm on the right and 3cm on the left.  Dr. Smith seemed to feel that this indicated a sensitivity to hormone stimulation that would lead to substantial growth.  YES!!!!

I was also shown how to check for blood clots in the veins of the leg (try not to think about it), and told to buy a “breast pump” (used for lactating women) but to be employed as an enlarging device for my nipples so they would appear more genetic in size.

Finally, I was left to dress and told to report to the doctor’s office.  I sat myself down on his couch as he wrote out prescriptions fro 1.25mg Premarin daily, and one pill per day of Aldactone, a drug which reduces body hair to female levels -one side effect, gynacomastia, an added benefit.

Earlier in this diary I promised to give a nuts and bolts description of the process as it occurred, so this is the beginning.  High on the informative content, but low on emotion.  I must interject however, that on the freeway on the way home, I clutched my prescription and drove with one hand, both afraid it would get away and triumphant that I had achieved it.

All medication at the Hollywood doctor’s had been provided or administered there, adding to the feeling that what I was doing was somehow wrong or illegal.  But here in my hand was an actual mainstream prescription to be honored by druggists everywhere, coming soon to a drug store near you!

So I drove to Sav-on, our major local chain, and boldly presented the note, waiting to savor the moment when I could smirkly say, “No, it is not for my wife, its for ME.  I am a transsexual and this is part of my hormone therapy.”  The female druggist held out her hand for the prescription.  I placed it confidently in her palm.  She looked it over and told me pleasantly, “It’ll be about 15 minutes.”  She was gone before I realized nothing was going to happen.

So I moped around the store for 15 minutes, killing time, thinking, “Okay, she just didn’t see the name or the drug name or didn’t make the connection. Wait ’til I pick it up!”

I came to the counter.  I said, “Prescription for David Phillips.”  She said, “Oh, yes.  Here it is.”, plopped it in a bag, stapled it, and handed it across the counter.  DAMN!  I never get any rejection to overcome to prove how determined I am.  DAMN!

So I picked up the breast pump, took it to the front counter and shoved it at the female clerk.  Who rang it up and gave me the change.  What do you have to do to freak these people out?  I give up!

Anyway, I feel good tonight.  The dosage is much smaller than before, but much safer.  And I am in the care of people for whom the word “care” truly has meaning.  I am on the road to womanhood (sounds like a Hope/Crosby movie, doesn’t it?).  And every day takes me a little bit closer to that far off land I’ve dreamed of seeing since my childhood.

But only 134 days!!!  DAMN!!!

October 10, 1989

I have a most startling discovery to report.  It is 7:02 am, and scant minutes ago I woke up with an incredible revelation.  It is not something I “worked out”.  It is not a conclusion based on analysis of facts.  It is a conviction of such depth and meaning that I do not have it within myself to question it.

I wanna be both.

Very simple, very true.  Fact is, after the misery of the “Vegas Weekend”, after the joy of kidding around with Mary in the week following, Mark and Juniko’s acceptance at the support group meeting, the workshop discussion of being “bi-gendered”, and the thrill of having my kids grab hold, look up and smile, “I love you daddy…”, I have awakened to the realization that I truly enjoy both roles.

My infatuation with the feminine gender has been a pendulum swing born from the so-long suppression of same.  And I do not wish to mix my modes.  But just as I have discovered that I am Transsexual and Bi-sexual, I have now learned with my heart that I am Bi-gendered as well.

My mother would have had a fit!  As for myself, I wonder how I can possibly cram any more “Bi”s or “Trans”s into one person.  I certainly seem to be as unique as I always egotistically thought, although not in the same areas I had gloated over in earlier years.

So what does this mean?  How can I deal with feelings that are so far beyond the limits of social acceptance as to never have appeared on a talk show?  Life my friend Steve always says, “Deal with it!”  And so I shall.

I cannot change the way I feel, but I can devise a plan for my life to allow for the greatest fulfillment of my feelings at the least possible cost.  So, I shall remain “daddy” and “hubby” here.  And I shall fill the role both from duty and enjoyment.  I shall relish my time as Dave.  But not at the expense of Melanie.  I am continuing on the hormone program.  And I will probably opt for SRS  when the time comes.  But even THAT will not prevent me from living both roles.  For today, I know and feel with the greatest certainty I have ever known that I cannot be happy as either, I must be both.

October 11, 1989

I’ve found this great trick for getting my numerous creditors off my back.  When they call on the phone demanding payment, I tell them, “Hey things are tough right now.  I’m on hormone therapy for a sex-change and the medical expenses are killing me!”  They never call back.

But enough of this mamby pamby gender puppy love.  Let’s get down to the nitty gritty.  I called Mark and Juniko last night.  Mark had not yet arrived home, but Juniko and I had a long and meaningful conversation.  This was the first time I had spoken to her since my “debut” last Saturday, but we only spoke of that briefly.  Instead, we somehow got on the subject of the second class status of women.

I’m not sure, but I think it is only because of MY changing status with HER that she allowed herself to open up so completely and frankly, as we had a true “woman to woman” talk.

I’ve always been in love with condescending attitude of men toward women.  It goes hand in hand with not having to go to war, getting doors opened, and having your seat pulled out.  But aside from a passing thought, I have never really considered the downside.  According to Juniko, it’s substantial.

She told me tales of sexual discrimination against her in the workplace.  Nothing blatant, mind you, but just that her small mistakes were less forgivable than male co-workers’ large ones.  And that attitude was so pervasive that she actually began to question her own worth.  She tells me it is this way for all females in male controlled environments.  And since Juniko is neither a bitter person nor an ardent feminist, I surely believe her.

As a corollary:  I was in the store the other day and a young mother with her baby were ahead of me at the counter with the check-out girl.  The mother dropped something and said, “Oh, I’m such a klutz!”  The clerk said, “I know what you mean.  Usually I’m just an airhead, but today I’m a real bubble brain!”  MY GOD!!!  They were doing it to themselves!!!

Apparently the years of subtle brainwashing by the media, the church, and daily interactions with men lead to such a completely submissive loss of self-worth that there are very few left with the stamina to fight back and change it.  Add to this the chemically induced aggression of males and the tendency toward submission by females, and it’s hard to imagine the status quo changing at any time in the future.

So now the question is put:  Am I ready for this?  Can I accept a station in life where I am continually considered less competent?  Where my ideas are immediately suspect?  Where any move to better my condition is met with disapproval or outright venom?  And what effect will thirty years as a woman have on my own sense of self-worth?  I wonder if I can accept this “silent slavery” as a price for satiating other needs?

Big questions, little answers.  For now, they will have to remain rhetorical as I surely must experience this aspect of female life first hand to really determine the effect it will ultimately have on me.

October 11, 1989, Evening

Just a quick memory flash:  While sorting though the pile of mixed possessions and memories that little the top of the pool table in the den-we-call-our-bedroom, I came across the first tape recorder I ever owned.  One of the first portable models ever made: a reel to reel affair roughly the size of two paper back books, stacked, that took tiny three-inch reels and ran off four “C” cells.

The reason for the sharp little prod of the past?  At age nine, I used up all my collected allowance to purchase the machine because I wanted to learn to speak female and needed the device to see what I sounded like.  I recorded one tape in bad falsetto, then gave up, frustrated.  The machine was briefly used for more commonplace endeavors such as recording sounds from around the block, then fell into disfavor and, as far as I know, remained packed away until I unearthed it just moments ago.

Gad, what a life….

October 14, 1989

I’m sitting here at the L.A. Convention Center at a Las Vegas Gambling show, writing this in the open spaces on a racing form with a giveaway pen proclaiming that “Commerce Casino is L.A.’s Friendliest”.  That may be true, but I hope I never have the opportunity to find out.  For I am bored silly, and if not for my determination to keep Mary happy, I could not have been dragged here.  But Mary wanted to come, so here I am.

But this kind of discontentment engenders (there’s that word again!) a plethora of thoughts about what might have been.  Like, am I making this transition to escape from a stifling relationship that I feel trapped in, yet cannot leave as that is not my nature?  Pretty hefty thought to start with!  Could be, as I often wonder what life would have been if I had married a pretty blonde who shared more of my basic loves – camping, philosophy, arts and crafts, cooking, eating; in short, the development of my current needs may be solely due to a lack of fulfillment in areas at my most fundamental levels. Add to this our continuing financial distress and the slow/no growth of my career, and there is more than sufficient cause to create a “scapegoat scenario” and blame uncontrollable needs rather than my own wants.

And this is driven home by the boredom I feel to the point of anger as I sit behind Mary in this seminar room while she very nearly coos in glee at practicing “Pai Go” poker at a makeshift table.  But this feeling is both amplified and confused by the “helpful” drogue standing behind my wife, frequently placing his hand on her shoulder and patting her on the back as he guides her through the maze of unfamiliar rules.

But how can this be?  That I am simultaneously trapped and jealous, seeking both my freedom and the status quo?  I think I’m full of shit.


It is an hour later, and I am CERTAIN that I am full of shit.  Mary told me she knew I was uncomfortable and went out of her way to hold my hand and nuzzle.  And now we have sat through a seminar that I completely enjoyed.  And so I have not only learned about “craps” but that I am full of it.

Last night, we were intimate again, the first time in the new house and the first regular “consummation” type sex in perhaps four months.  This hiatus was largely due to the mega-dose of hormones I had received from the Hollywood doctor, which made erections both soft and unsustainable.  But due to the three week vacation between doctors and the lower dose with the new, both function and desire have returned to near “normal” levels.  I had thought that part of my life was gone forever… SURPRISE!!!

However, there is the odd confusion growing from this return of testosterone to my system.  For hormones affect both the body and the mind.  And every day I have felt more aggressive and actually enjoyed it.  Again, the question arises: If I had not remained on hormones for so long, would I have followed this course so far?  I suppose I may never know, but even on this low dose I still enjoy the physical changes enough to continue.  And so I shall, for now….

October 24, 1989

I’ve moved my computer to the office, but find that my thoughts are inspired toward diary entries in the evenings at home.  Hence, this is being laid down in long-hand: more personal perhaps, but far less frenetic as my thoughts keep tripping over my words.

I’ve entered a period of surprising calm; the calm before the storm perhaps, but still, and peacefully quiet for the moment at least.

Mary and I have had a truly “adult” heart to heart conversation without tears and in the friendliest of terms.  We reaffirmed our love for each other and our sure knowledge that our love will remain all of our lives, even if they must by circumstance, diverge.  And yet, we are agreed that I can never be content until I have explored my feelings fully and come to know, in truth, how my life must proceed.  So as friends and lovers we have agreed to separate for a time some six months in the future, when I go “full time”.  For that is truly the only way to experience life on the “other side” and thereby determine if the reality is equal to the hype.  Then, the decision is ultimately left in my hands.  Should I discover that my new life is not the utopia I have imagined, Mary will welcome me back with open arms.  But should this new role truly assuage the hurt and frustration, we shall remain separated on amicable terms.  She is a remarkable woman: To know that I could never be happy until I know the answer and to have the love and courage to risk losing me and with me her dreams, so that I might find peace.

Lately, perhaps due to this new openness, I find myself slipping more into the role of Melanie in speech, body language and dress.  As I write this, I am wearing a T-shirt exposing my shaved arms and the shape of my small but obvious breasts.  My choice of inflection and even the pitch I strike are creeping ever nearer to an acceptable female level.  I suppose that now that a split seems almost unavoidable, I have nothing to lose, or at least no reason to soften the impact of my transition.

And yet, Mary and I still laugh together and tease and cuddle and kiss and make love. We have verbalized our desire to have “one hell of a good time” as long as we remain together.  And so far, that is exactly what we are doing.

October 25, 1989

Confused as hell.  That’s what I am: confused as hell.  Every time I get my head on straight I find my body’s backward.

So here I am, just getting tearfully, then resignedly used to the idea of separating from Mary.  Here I am feeling more and more feminine and slipping pleasurably into the role of Melanie.  When out of nowhere I get a call from a production company in response to a recent mailing of resumes.

Only twenty resumes.  Twenty of my old male resumes sent because now that I am becoming Melanie, my mind is free to consider career moves instead of just gender issues.  I never expected a response, but only wanted to exercise my new-found interest in my craft.  I am free to promote my career.

But out of my freedom comes a new prison.  For this production company is interested in my work as a director – a MALE director, no doubt.  And the lure of fortune and glory gums up the works.

So here I am, halfway submissive with a solid milk chocolate coating of macho bullshit.  Old fire-dog yearnings clawing through the gossamer pink flesh of a newly reborn psyche, leaving stiff and lifeless scar tissue smoldering in its wake.  Leaving me hurt, leaving me happy, leaving me confused as hell.

October 26, 1989

“Professor, you’re full of whimsy!”, she says.  “That always happens when I eat beans…”, replies Grouch Marx in “Horsefeathers”.  And “full of whimsy” describes today pretty well.

The sky is clear two days after a purifying rain, and a crisp fall breeze gently rustles my clothes, staving off the first frost of fall, even as it functions as harbinger of same.  My thoughts drift quietly as the soft white clouds across the blank blue cold warmth of my mind.

Minor lack of sleep has combined with too many cups of coffee in creating a null state of mind where conflicts peacefully cross paths without interference.  James Taylor croons in earthy tones that mirror and amplify my gentle feelings of well-being.  Questions are emasculated into dormancy as their drive to procure answers fades into the picture-images of happier childhood days of the same season, when gender was an unknown word and only the wind and the sound and the music mattered.

I know that these frozen moments that thaw in the matrix of a balmy day are truly contradictory, yet none of their fervor has substance.  I wand to grow old with my wife, raising our children, buying our own home, sitting by the fire and the non-consuming burning of our love.  I want to lay in the arms of a gentle man by the same fire and nuzzle against his chest, secure in the knowledge that he will protect me from the winter winds.  I want to strike out on my own and find my true love: a girl of music and laughter, philosophy and empathy, and I want to protect HER from the chill.

But today, this rare and beautiful day, all these dreams, hopes, and fantasies merge together in that wordless general feeling of well-being.  Somehow these contradictory futures pass through my mind, then move on before they clash with the next.  And in their passing leave behind the glowing embers of contentment that endure, to combine with those that supplant them, until this satisfied contentment permeates my entire being, leaving no room for cacophony in the eternal fleeting moment of this day.

October 26, 1989, Afternoon

Is it wrong for girls to like Jules Verne?  I wonder what parameters can be set to delineate the differences between appropriate male and female interests.  Rosie Grier crocheted and Amelia Erheart conquered the skies.  Yet somehow I continually find myself trying to pigeon-hole my feelings, to sort them by zip code and seal them with a cast iron kiss.

I love the Civil War; I mean I really LOVE it.  So is that out the door?  Can’t be, doesn’t make sense.  But how do I fit in if I won’t fit the mold.  Maybe I’m just half-way, never to be satisfied and never to be at home.

Amazing the mood swings in two short hours.  Sonofabitch!

October 29, 1989

What a day: up, down, and sideways.  Right now: watching TV at 7:00 pm with my family; I glance down at my foot – Nike tennis shoes and tan socks protruding from my blue jeans.  Suddenly, for the first time, I feel like I am in drag wearing male clothes.  Everything looks out of place and feels strange.  I imagine pantyhose and heels, and the superimposed image is so right, so comfortable.  I realize another frozen gear has given way in my subconscious as I redefine my self-image.  And as I sit here now, the edginess continues.  So odd, since “dressing” has never been a large part of my TS experience.

Earlier today I suffered a trauma of devastating proportions, largely I suppose, due to hormonal side effects.  I lost my composure completely, suddenly overcome with a sadness so deep, so profound, that my future withered before my eyes.

In conversation alone with Mary, we had begun to speak of our impending separation in tangible terms that thrust the concept from conjecture into harsh and terrible reality.  I knew then that this next Christmas would be our last as a family.  Never again would I waken to the gleeful cries of young voices eyeing the bounty Santa had left.  Instead, I pictured myself silently watching old home videos alone in a darkened room on Christmas morning.  Then, regretfully placing a gun to my head and ending my suffering once and for all.  Blood on the TV screen, clotting in the hot static over smiling faces of times past.

Enraged by this image, I threw my coffee across the room and actually tore the house apart, looking for my grandfather’s rifle, while Mary cried in near-hysterics.  I suppose if I had found the weapon, I would have pointed it at myself.  And at that moment, I might have pulled the trigger.  For in that instant I realized that no one kills themselves to die.  They kill themselves waiting for someone to stop them.

Fortunately, the gun remains in unknown quarters, and I remain among the living.  Mary and I have both recovered, but I, as she, am drained and hurt.

What has been set in motion can no longer be stopped, and “suffering” is its secret name.

October 31, 1989

Exactly 33 years ago to the day I became transsexual.  At age three.  To be precise, on Halloween night, 1956, in Burbank, California.

My mother had been divorced for two years and we were living with my grandparents.  We had (the week before) taken a car vacation to Chicago where the family hailed from, and most of them still reside to this day.  While there, my mother borrowed a dress from a six-year-old cousin of mine for a Halloween costume for me.  While my grandfather returned cross-country with the car, my mother and I enjoyed my first plane flight, an old four-engine prop job that rattled and heaved through the night sky.  I don’t remember much of the trip itself, except something about the small of bacon when we arrived.

As I recall, the plane trip was made specifically so that I wouldn’t miss Halloween at home.  When the appointed night arrived, the dress was brought out along with an auburn wig with a long braid on each side, that my mother had worn in a “Little Theatre” production of, I believe, a melodrama.  I remember being told to raise my arms, and I can still feel the rough cloth of the gingham print dress scratching down across my face.

I told my mother I didn’t want to do it, but she would have none of it and fastened a draw-string behind my back.  I begged to be let free, but she firmly placed the wig upon my head.  I told her I didn’t want to go out like this, but she said it was the only costume we had and – no costume, no trick-or-treat.  Before we left, the final humiliation was to be a series of black and white pictures taken as a remembrance of “how cute” I looked.

I remember crying as she led me out the door.  I don’t know how many houses we went to, and only one can I recall.  But it remains fixed in my psyche with the clarity of a photograph.  I stood on the porch, my mother next to me, and rang the bell.  The door opened revealing a lady who looked down, smiled, and said, “What a cute little girl!”  I knew she didn’t have any idea I was a boy dressed as a girl, but she actually thought I WAS a girl in a cute outfit.  I was devastated, and cringe inwardly at the memory of that event to this day.

October 31, 1989 – Other Thoughts

In looking back on that awful night, I suddenly realized that I have not here included the early years of my struggle for personal identity.  Since my first appointment with Doctor Jayne Thomas, a well-respected gender psychologist, is in three days, and I intend to use this diary as background, I shall endeavor to fill in the gaps.  This will be more a chain of thought and out of any discernable order, wherever the Synapse Express pulls into the station.

Age five:  I remember walking past the open closet in what was the bedroom I shared with my mother.  (It is now my daughter’s bedroom.)  I glanced in and saw a gold metallic skirt glistening in a truant ray of sunshine, and I remember thinking, “That’s so pretty!  I wish I could wear that!”  But even then, some deep guilt informed me that I shouldn’t entertain such thoughts and I passed on.

Age three:  I used to play with the little girl from next door that summer.  I had a small sandbox in our yard and we would build castles and dig tunnels, endlessly filling our little plastic buckets with the dustless sand.  She was three as well, blonde, and cute.  She was my first friend.  I remember she had a “sunsuit”, a legless full-torso playsuit with string-tie shoulders.  I wanted to wear one too, and I have seen a long-lost picture of me in my own string-tied sunsuit.  (She also used to dump sand in my hair… I would cry.)

Perhaps two years later, a boy my age moved in next door on the other side.  All I remember of him was when I reached through the chain link fence to introduce myself, he grabbed my arm and twisted it against the rusty metal.  And later, when he had come over to play, he beat me over the head with a baseball bat.

At age seven:  My mother had just remarried and we had moved into a new apartment.  Times were great, as my new step-dad bout me a cowboy hat like his, and a scarf and boots as well.  He was only 22, just 15 years my senior, but he had just returned from an army tour of Japan, had grown up back East, and had many tales to tell.  Everything was new and wonderful.

At age eight: My mother started to take in ironing to help with the bills.  Her primary customers were neighbors from the old street.  On day (I cannot fathom what possessed me to do so) I rummaged through the laundry and found a pair of slacks from a girl near my age I had played with.  They were pink, with a criss-crossed lace-up front and, most exciting, NO ZIPPER!

I remember holding them, wondering what it would be like to wear them, what it would be like to be a girl. When my parents were out across the street to the store, I nervously tried them on, adrenaline surging through my system.

There was a strong “high” from the danger of being caught, but there was something else as well: a feeling that to this day I cannot put into words, but as nearly as I can, it was a feeling of contentment, of rightness, that mixed with the guilt not only of the deed but of the enjoyment of it.

I frequented the laundry piles many times that year, until she stopped doing that work and my needs had to be satiated elsewhere.

At some age between seven and eleven: For some months my major hobby was making paper mache breasts from toilet tissue when ostensibly using the bathroom.  I would go in, wet and wad up the tissue, making little points for the nipples, then place them under my shirt and admire my profile in the mirror until my mother hammered on the door inquiring what was taking so long.  Then I would flush the evidence down the toilet and return to the real world.

At age eleven:  I spent the summer days at my grandparent’s house, the house where I had grown up, while my parents both worked.  I would sneak into my grandmother’s room and try on her point contour-cup bra, which would give me a shape bigger than imagination.

One day, when the parents of the little girl who owned the pink lace-up pants were on vacation, I snuck into their house through the fireplace grate in the backyard.  I leafed through the father’s playboy magazines, getting my first look at naked women, but spent most of my time in their bedroom, trying on the wife’s clothes.  From underwear to tank top and skirt, I revelled in approximating the look of this attractive woman.

That night, under the claustrophobic press of guilt, I admitted my sin to my mother.  She exploded in a rage the intensity of which I had not seen in all my years with her.  I cringed as she pulled my underwear down and demanded I look at myself.  “Look at it!”, she screamed.  “You are a boy, someday you’ll be a man.  Even if you cut it off, you’d still be a man!”  Cut it off?  The thought had never occurred to me.  But after that night, it never left me.

Age eleven and a half: I had been feeling strange things between my legs for a couple of months.  I asked my step-dad, “How come my penis kind of moves around when I think of certain things?”  What kind of things?”  “Uh, things like, uh… POLITICS!”  “I see.  Well, that’s normal.  Don’t worry about it.”

That was the extent of my “birds and bees” speech.  Until I was twenty-one, one year before I got married, I thought the “normal” way of making love was “doggy-style” because I had seen dogs “do it” that way.  Front to front never occurred to me.  When I found out (I can’t remember how) I wondered for weeks, “How can front to front be any fun?  You can’t get a good grip on their breasts.  Besides, you have to look at each other and that’s too embarrassing.”  I do remember my mother saying, “Don’t worry.  When the time comes, you’ll know what to do.”  Sure, ma.

Age eleven and a half:  THE DAY I CAME OF AGE.  I had learned of the joy of manual stimulation.  But my creative mind didn’t stop there.  I decided that placing our battery powered, waterproof electric toothbrush against my penis was just the thing to increase the fun.  So every night when I took my bath, I would thrust the device under the water to muffle the noise, then rub it up against myself and enjoy the feeling.

Only in the last month did a sudden flash of insight open a memory I had completely suppressed.  I suddenly remembered that while using the device I was always fantasizing that is was a man making love to me as a woman.

The guilt of enjoying this was so great that I actually completely lost this memory until my recent opening up.  In fact, this was not a homosexual fantasy, but a transsexual one.

In any event, one night the toothbrush felt exceptionally good.  Then, suddenly, my penis went into spasms and spewed white gooey liquid that floated to the top of of the water and stuck to my legs.  I was terrified; I was sure I had killed myself.  The fear was so great I vowed never to do it again, and kept that promise until the next night.

At age nine:  My mother caught me with a sex-doll of my own creation: a pair of pants stuffed with dirty laundry to fill out the legs.  She was mad again, demanding to know whether it was male or female.  “Female!”, I lied.  “Then why did you use pants?!”  “Because I tried stockings and they wouldn’t hold straight.”, I wept.  (This much was true, but I didn’t tell her the real reason I switched was because the stocking fantasy wasn’t “doing it” for me – whatever “it” was.)

At age 15 or 16: Getting my natural father to buy me a “bald cap” for Halloween, then cutting it up and taping it between my legs to make me look female.  The surge of happiness and shock when I turned around, thinking of something else and caught a glimpse of my naked, penis-free body in the mirror.  For a brief moment, the fantasy was reality, until my eyes focused and the poor make-up job became obvious once more.

Another Halloween:  When I tried to get my natural father to buy me a braid of hair and some “spirit gum” to stick it on with, ostensibly to make hairy arms for a monster.  Actually, to get the braid so I could have long hair.

Halloween, age twelve:  Convincing the twelve year old girl across the street that she should lend me her mom’s wig, so I could go as a girl.  Then chickening out because my mother’s “Even if you cut it off…” speech was still a fresh wound in my memory.

Age sixteen:  Dressing in my mother’s pull-over dress that fit my taller frame like a mini-dress, then parading in the back yard and darting back in the house.  This for several days, then actually going out in the alley behind the hard.  Bad mistake, bad timing.  The red-neck machine shop guys in their twenties were taking lunch in the alley and saw me.  I tried to keep up my composure, but they started cat-calling and then following me.  I picked up my pace, and they, theirs.  Frantic, I turned the corner to the front of our house, then jumped the fence (quite a sight in pantyhose!) and darted into the house.  I remember my heart pounding like a hammer as I peered through eh front curtains and saw them looking all around, wondering where I had gone.  I didn’t dress again for months.

Well, the list goes on and on.  From fantasies to realities.  Risk taking, but with careful planning.  Hidden videos and secret drawings.  Clandestine stories penned then destroyed.  In the next couple of days I shall add to this weird accumulation of shadows in the attempt to cast light on my psyche.

(Copyright 1992, Melanie Anne Phillips)

(The Transsexual Diary series will continue in the next edition of The Subversive)

I urge you all to keep a diary of YOUR personal journey, whether it be through transition or not.  The attitudes and even the order of events becomes cloudy through time, and I am continually amazed to re-read things that memory would have me believe had happened differently.  If nothing else, it is a good way to see long-term patterns in yourself that you cannot see except in retrospect.  That objective view alone is worth the inconvenience of keeping a journal.



A continuing series by Mary Kay representative,

Lynda J1

Finding Your Personal Rainbow

Choosing the right colors is a matter of personal choice and intuition.  It’s also a matter of fashion trends, personal coloring, and a little know-how.

The first key to color selection is to take a good look at your face and hair color.  Grab a mirror right now and take a good look.  The first thing we’re going to do is to determine the relationship between your skin tone and hair color.  This is called your contrast level.

Determining Your Level of Contrast:

Do you have light hair and ivory skin?  If so, your contrast level is low.  A low contrast level is marked by a similar color intensity of skin tone and hair.  A good example would be silvery-gray or platinum blonde hair and ivory skin.  A low contrast level also occurs with darker blonde to light brown or light red hair and a beige skin tone or black hair and deep bronze skin tone.  You can see that the color intensity of hair and skin tone is similar in these examples.

A medium contrast level occurs with medium brown, red, or auburn hair and ivory, beige, or bronze skin tone.  The contrast level is just slightly more pronounced than the low contrast examples above.  There is just a little more contrast between hair and skin tone.

A high contrast level occurs with dark hair and ivory, beige, or light bronze skin tones.  For example, someone with ivory skin and dark brown hair would have a high contrast level.  So too would someone with a medium skin tone and black hair.  A good example of this would be the black hair and lighter skin of most Orientals.

Choosing Your Color Statement:

The next thing you will want to consider in color selection is the type of look you are trying to achieve: natural, career, or dramatic.  Imagine two women, one with very light blonde hair and ivory skin, the other with dark bronze skin and black hair.  Both fall into the “low contrast” level.  Now imagine both of them wearing red lipstick.  The woman with dark bronze skin and black hair achieves a natural look while the woman with light blonde hair and ivory skin achieves a look that is much more dramatic.

Low Contrast Level-

Women with a low contrast level can achieve a natural look by choosing colors that are of similar intensity to their personal coloring.  A woman with light blonde or gray hair and ivory skin can achieve this look with softer, more subtle lip, eye, and cheek color such as Azalea or Apricot cheek colors, Mauve Elegance, Toffee, or Ginger Pearl lip color and Pink Opal, Polished Pewter, Spun Silk, Whipped Cocoa and Oyster Shell eye colors.  A woman with dark bronze skin and black hair can achieve this look with colors of similar intensity to her hair and skin tone such as Crimson or Cranberry lip color, Mulberry or Cashmere cheek color, and darker shades of Tuxedo Brown, Blackest Black, Classic Navy, or Smoky Plum eyeshadows.

Now, lets take these same two women and give them a career look.  The woman with light blonde or gray hair and ivory skin should choose colors in the medium range such as Heather Rose, Exotic Purple, Periwinkle Blue, Misty Pine, or South Sea eyeshadow and a Garnet Frost, Antique Rose, Dusty Rose, or Pumpkin lip color.  Her cheek color should remain the same as for the natural look, staying with Azalea or Apricot.  The woman with dark hair and dark skin should go a little brighter with her lip and eye color using medium/dark shades.  Her cheek color can go a little lighter, but carefully!

A dramatic look can be achieved by the woman with light hair and ivory skin by going slightly darker and brighter with lip and eye colors.  Periwinkle Blue, Smoky Plum, and even Black Onyx eyeshadows can be used with care as long as they are used as an accent to a base of lighter eyeshadows.  This can be achieved by using a soft color over the entire eyelid from the base of the lashes to the eyebrow, then using the darker or more intense colors in a wedge at the outside corners of the eyelids.  The woman with darker skin tone and black hair achieves a more dramatic look by using more intense colors with the same care: a brighter shade of lipstick and a bolder, brighter selection of eye color.

Medium Contrast Level-

A medium contrast level can achieve a natural look by using colors that fall into the medium range, not too light and not too dark.  The more muted shades of Cranberry Glaze, Copper, or Toffee lipsticks, Wild Rose or Coral cheek color, and medium shades of eyeshadow work well for those with beige skin tone.  If your hair is medium brown, red, or auburn and your skin tone is beige, medium shades such as Whipped Cocoa, Heather Rose, Periwinkle Blue Misty Pine, Emerald Green, Shimmering Rust, or Polished Pewter eyeshadows will give the most natural look.  If your hair is brown and your skin tone is a medium bronze, Smoky Plum, Black Onyx, Shimmering Rust, and Classic Navy eye colors are good choices.  Lipstick shades include Cranberry Glaze, Copper, or Plum.

A career look can be achieved by going a little darker or a little brighter, but not too much.  The cheek color should remain the same.  Lip colors such as Copper, Pumpkin, Plum Blossom, and Mandarin are good choices for both Beige and bronze skin tones.  The eyeshadow colors are basically the same as the natural look with the addition of colors such as Exotic Purple, Oyster Shell and Peach Chiffon for the woman with beige skin tone.  A woman with bronze skin tone could add Emerald Green and Polished Pewter eyeshadow shades and Sunset, or Crimson lipstick.

A dramatic look for women with a medium contrast level can be achieved with colors that contrast with their hair and skin tones.  A woman with a beige skin tone can go both brighter and darker while a woman with a bronze skin tone can go brighter and lighter.

High Contrast Level-

                A high contrast level occurs with dark hair and ivory skin tone or black hair and a light bronze or beige skin tone.  Colors that contrast slightly with skin tone give a natural look.  For the ivory or beige skin tone, Antique Rose, Ginger Pearl, Sunset, or Dusty Rose lipstick are good choices.  Women with bronze skin should choose colors like Sunset, Plum, or Cranberry Glaze lipstick.  Eyeshadows such as Whipped Cocoa, Shimmering Rust, Smoky Plum, Exotic Purple, Pink Opal, Spun Silk, Polished Pewter, South Sea, and Heather Rose work best for ivory or beige skin tones while bronze skin tones look best with Smoky Plum, Tuxedo Brown, Misty Pine, Periwinkle Blue, and Classic Navy.

A career look can be achieved by a little higher intensity of contrast than the natural look.  Fuchsia, Really Red, Plum Blossom, and Sunset lip colors look best.  Smoky Plum, Exotic Purple, Polished Pewter, Tuxedo Brown, South Sea, and Pink Opal eyeshadows also work well for a career look.  Those with bronze skin tones can add Black Onyx to that list as well.  Notice that the brighter colors of lipstick give a career look to this group while those with low contrast achieve either a dramatic or a natural look with this combination.

                A dramatic look is achieved by those with a high contrast level by using darker, richer lipstick shades and darker eyeshadow shades for ivory or beige skin tones and lighter shades for bronze skin tones.

Cheek Color for All Contrast Levels-

Cheek colors in all cases should be chosen to blend with the natural blush of the cheeks.  For example, those with ivory skin tones look best with lighter, softer shades of Azalea or Apricot.  Those with beige to light bronze skin tones look best with Wild Rose or Coral cheek colors and those with bronze skin tones look best with deeper shades of Mulberry or Cashmere cheek colors.  Slightly deeper shades of cheek color can be used with each of the dramatic looks described, but be careful!  Use a very light touch and apply after you have applied lip and eye color to make sure the shade complements rather than detracts from the look you are trying to achieve.

Cheek color should look natural and should blend into your foundation.  There should be no discernible line between cheek color and foundation color.  One should meld into the other.

Key #2: Wardrobe:

Wow!  Did you get all that?  Sounds pretty complicated doesn’t it?  But like I’ve said before, it takes practice.  Also keep in mind that these are only suggestions, not hard and fast rules.  A lot of color choice depends on personal preference and intuition.  And breaking the rules is part of a woman’s prerogative!

There are two more keys to choosing the right colors.  One is wardrobe colors.  The other is eye color.

Wardrobe colors fall into three general categories: warm, cool, and neutral.  Lip, cheek, and nail colors should be chosen to harmonize with your wardrobe.  Generally speaking, you should wear warm lip, nail, and cheek colors with warm-colored clothing and cool lip, nail, and cheek colors with cool-colored clothing.  Neutrals such as black, gray, white, and dark navy look good with either warm or cool colors.  The exception to this would be a greenish gray which would look best with cool colors or off-white with yellow undertones which looks best with warm colors.

It’s not always easy to decide which colors are warm and which are cool.  Colors with yellow undertones such as orange, coral, warm reds and yellow-greens are considered warm.  Colors with blue undertones such as green, deeper reds, pinks, and purple are considered cool.  Browns are usually warm, but very deep shades such as coffee can fall into the cool category.

If some of the clothing in your wardrobe contain both warm and cool colors, go with the dominant shade.  If there is no dominant shade, choose either.  If you are wearing a cool-colored jacket and a warm blouse, you should consider the undertone of your accessories.  For example, if you are wearing gold earrings, choose warm shades.  If your earrings match the cool-colored jacket, choose cool shades.  Another choice is to go with the undertone of the clothing that you wear closest to your face.  For example you should choose cool colors like Azalea cheek color, Pink Orchid lip color, and Mauve nail color with a blue blouse or sweater.  When wearing an orange blouse, choose warm colors such as Coral cheek color, Mandarin lip color, and Sundance nail color.

It is not necessary that lip and nail color match, but they should be in the same color family, either warm or cool.  For example, you could wear Plum Pearl nail color and Pink Orchid or Mauve Elegance lipstick with cool-colored clothing.  Pumpkin or Ginger Pearl lipstick and Apricot Ice or Mandarin nail colors look great with warm-colored clothing.

A true red is considered neutral and can be worn with warm, cool, or neutral clothing.

Warm lip, cheek, and nail colors look great with warm metallics such as gold or copper.  Cool lip, cheek, and nail colors look wonderful with cool metallics such as silver or blue.

Breaking the Rules:

Now lets consider breaking these rules!!  Sometimes doing the exact opposite can have a dramatic and beautiful effect.  For example, try a coral lip, cheek, and nail combination with a medium blue outfit.  It can look wonderful if your personal coloring allows you that choice.  The only way to decide is to try it.  Another way to break the rules for those with ivory skin and dark hair is to try wearing fuchsia lip color, exotic purple and smoky plum eyeshadow, and lilac cheek color (applied with a very light touch) when wearing purple, fuchsia, or blue clothing next to the face. 

With evening wear, try wearing lighter or frosted colors and a touch of lip gloss to catch the light from candles.

Eye Color:

 Finally, let’s talk about choosing eyeshadow colors to complement your eye color.  Shades of pink and plum can make blue or green eyes sparkle.  Women with blue eyes can combine Pink Opal and Periwinkle Blue, Heather Rose and Smoky Plum, Polished Pewter and Black Onyx, Whipped Cocoa and Spun Silk, Pink Opal and Smoky Plum, or Pink Opal with South Sea.

Green eyes look especially attractive with combinations such as Exotic Purple and Oyster Shell, Smoky Plum and Polished Pewter, Whipped Cocoa or Tuxedo Brown and Peach Chiffon, Pink Opal and Smoky Plum, or Shimmering Rust and Peach Chiffon.

Combinations such as Smoky Plum and Classic Navy, Tuxedo Brown and Pineapple Freeze, Misty Pine and Spun Silk, Smoky Plum and Exotic Purple, or Shimmering Rust and Black Onyx make brown eyes even more beautiful.

Hazel eyes shine with combinations such as Pink Opal and Smoky Plum, Tuxedo Brown and Peach Chiffon, South Sea and Exotic Purple, Emerald Green and Whipped Cocoa, or Heather Rose and Tuxedo Brown.


These are only suggested color combinations and you are certainly not limited to these choices.  I have found that when I wear eyeshadow combinations that harmonize with my clothing I get a more “complete” look.  It’s only a personal preference, but I enjoy combining Exotic Purple and Smoky Plum eyeshadow when I wear purple, Whipped Cocoa and Tuxedo Brown or Pink Opal and Heather Rose when I wear red, and cooler shades of Smoky Plum and Polished Pewter or Polished Pewter and Periwinkle when I wear blue.  I have also seen women wear a monochromatic color scheme including Azalea cheek color, Pink Orchid lipstick, and Heather Rose with Pink Opal eyeshadow for a soft, romantic look.  That look could also be varied by using a soft touch of Whipped Cocoa, Tuxedo Brown or Black Onyx as a third accent color in a wedge at the outside corner of the eyes.

Telling Secrets:

The secret to wearing any color combination well is a set of good makeup brushes.  Choose a set that is well-constructed and made with natural bristles.  Purchasing a quality set of makeup brushes is worth the investment.  They will last for years and create a professional look.

Your set should include a large, loose-powder brush, a blush brush (3/4 to 1 inch wide), a sponge-tipped applicator and eyeshadow blending brush, an eyeliner brush and a lip brush.  An eyebrow brush and a lash separating comb are optional, but very handy.  For example, unruly brows can be tamed by spraying the eyebrow brush with hair spray or rubbing the bristles with a tiny dab of styling gel or mousse, then combing the brows in place.

Use your makeup brushes to blend colors.  One option is to apply your foundation, eyeshadow, blusher and loose powder, allow a minute for them to “set”, then lightly go over you eyeshadow with a clean, loose-powder brush to blend.  Use a light back-and-forth motion across the eyelids.  Use downward strokes on the cheeks to blend blusher, then finish up your look with eyeliner, mascara, and lipstick.  Be sure to keep your makeup brushes clean by washing in mild soap or shampoo occasionally and allowing them to air-dry.

Don’t be afraid of blue eyeshadow.  Blue eyeshadow has received  some bad press in recent years and that is understandable.  The wrong intensity of ANY eyeshadow can look ghastly if overdone.  For example, a woman with beige skin tone, dark hair, and brown eyes who colors her entire eyelid with bright blue eyeshadow doesn’t look very attractive.  A woman with ivory skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes who uses tons of bright green eyeshadow doesn’t look any better.  The trick is in choosing the intensity of blue or green (if that is your choice) that goes with your personal contrast level.  Brown eyes can look wonderful with a combination such as Smoky Plum and Classic Navy if her contrast level and the look she is trying to achieve call for that particular combination.  The same is true for the blonde with blue eyes.  A combination like Pink Opal and South Sea look wonderful on her.

If you smoke or drink a lot of tea or coffee, you may find you leave most of your lip color on the cigarette filter or coffee cup and have to reapply your lipstick more often than you’d like.  To make your lip color last longer, choose a lasting color lipstick and lip liner pencil in coordinating color.  Line the lips and apply lip color.  Blot with a tissue, then dip your loose-powder brush into loose face powder.  Tap the brush against the side of the container to shake off the excess powder, then lightly tap your lips with the brush.  This tiny amount of loose powder “seals” the color so it won’t smear or come off as easily.  This also makes it almost kiss-proof!  It does give a matte finish, but that is usually the look you want to achieve for day wear.  If you prefer a glossy finish, line the lips with lip liner pencil, then fill in the lips with the same pencil before applying lipstick.

Medium color eyeshadows such as Exotic Purple, Emerald Green, and Periwinkle Blue can be made to look darker by mixing with Black Onyx.  This takes a little experimenting and practice.  For example, try applying Black Onyx in a wedge at the outside corner of the eyelid, then go over it with a medium eyeshadow color.

                The intensity of any lip color can be muted by combining it with Intensity Controller.  So if you find a shade of lipstick you like and find it’s too bright for a natural look, just tone it down with Intensity Controller.

Finally, don’t be afraid to experiment!  You’re pretty safe if you keep your lip, cheek, and nail colors in the same family, warm or cool.  Pink lipstick just doesn’t look good with apricot cheek color.  With eyeshadow colors, the doors are wide open to experiment.  I hope the suggestions I’ve made give you a good springboard for your own choices and creativity.  Most of all, relax and enjoy!

MORE Information:

(I realize this is a lot of information to absorb all at once!  If you find this overwhelming, I suggest that you print this article and either highlight the portions that apply to your personal coloring and contrast level or cross out anything that doesn’t apply to you.)

I sincerely recommend the book Inside Beauty if you want to learn more (yes!  there is more!!) about color selection, skin care, hair care, nail care, fragrances, highlighting and contouring.  It’s loaded with information including full-color photographs, step-by-step instructions, and ideas for doing your own makeovers.  It is available in major bookstores for $19.95 or you can order it from me at the special price of only $10.

If you need personal consultation, have a question or comment, or would like more information about ordering, just send e-mail to Lynda J1.  All orders are sent in plain wrapping to any address or name you specify.

                Since some of you are new to this service, you may have missed previous articles.  Reprints of previous articles that have appeared in this publication are available upon request.  Also available is a questionnaire that will help you determine your skin type and the skin care products you should be using.

Editor’s Note:  Remember, Lynda J1 is YOUR Mary Kay Representative.  Support her efforts here by placing your orders with her, a real nice way to say “Thank You!”  All orders are held in confidence, and orders will be shipped in plain wrapping.  And you’ll never find a more understanding or knowledgeable make-up consultant for your special needs.

Also, I have a copy of the book, Inside Beauty, and found it just as useful, educational, and FUN as Lynda indicated.  This book explains everything I every wanted to know about makeup (but was afraid to ask).


Submitted by Denese F


Although I am pleased with the progress that I have made since starting on hormones on May 20, 1992, it has caused me many problems some of which I was not prepared for.Prior to starting hormones I could put on a 40A bra and need to put a foam breast form in the cup to fill it out.  I had no breasts so to speak.  This morning when I got up I put on a 42C bra  and there is only about 1/8th of an inch remaining to completely fill the cup.

My recent blood/hormone level tests were within normal limits and my doctor sees no reason to change the dosage or frequency until after the first of the year.  He then plans on me taking one injection every three weeks instead of every two weeks.For the record, I take 1 cc of Estradiol Valerate Injection and 1 cc of hydroxyprogesterone Caprote in each injection.

This rapid breast development has caused a few problems at work.  The main problem is that people are noticing that I have breasts.  Only one has approached me to ask.  The others go to my manager or their manager to ask if there is a problem.When I originally started the hormones I thought that I would have 9 months to 1 year before I even had to worry about anything really showing.  I will have plenty of time to get ready.A meeting has been scheduled to tell my coworkers what is happening on the afternoon of September 24th.  I now estimate full time beginning anywhere from late October to Mid November of this year.  This is approximately 6 months early.

Although I had purchased some feminine clothing, I had wanted to really round out my wardrobe before going full time.  I don’t have time now.  I have had to move everything up.I just put two very good wigs (same style and color) on layaway until the 1st of October.  The reason being that they were on sale 20% off.  It was a good choice, because after trying on 3 or 4 styles, that left everyone knowing that this was a male dressed as a woman to, I’m not sure that this is not a woman.  This was without makeup and with my male eyeglasses on.  Getting the right help from a professional can make all the difference in the world.I have a Mary Kay Representative coming to my house on October 3rd to spend some time with me showing me how to hide the defects, which there are many.  This was arranged by Lynda J1, our online Mary Kay Representative.  She explained the situation, so this poor lady will not be totally shocked when she arrives.

I am really trying to lose the weight and I have a smooth face for the first time ever.  I plucked those rascals out with tweezers and most are regrowing a littler finer.  I know that in the next

couple of weeks I am going to have to spend some a lot of time with the electrologist.  I am fortunate that I have always had light facial hair.Another major problem is that I do get some mood swings.  They are not as bad as they were in the beginning, but I know that there are times that I want to cry for no particular reason.  I am really beginning to appreciate what women go through from puberty to menopause.  It’s like going through puberty at 47.  It’s not real easy, but something that I am more than willing to accept to achieve my goal.The only advice that I can offer anybody is don’t do hormones on your own.  Get them through a doctor that has knowledge on the effect they will have on your system and be ready to help you if you need help.  The effects can be devastating if one is not prepared for the changes that will occur.On the plus side, there is only one thing.  It’s the biggest  and the best.  Denese is about to be born. 


Contributed by: Marsha J

Before listing this excerpt let me first say the following

1. I read almost everything I could get my hands on.

2. I give more weight to those opinions that agree with my own   🙂

3. My own medical case, have never had any health problems, I’m not a drinker or drug user.  (I tasted a beer(ugh) and have had bottle of Sangria(much better) in the last year).  Overweight but active.

4. Use a doctor, read all you can.  My top recommended reading is

_Hormones_ 1992 Edition, Sheila Kirk, MD. an I.F.G.E. publication.

Excerpt from _Hormones_ 1991 Edition, Sheila Kirk, MD. an I.F.G.E. publication. 


     As I review the literature written by transgendered individuals for transgendered readers, I’m struck by the generous mixture of good information and that which is really poor … conjecture and personal opinion mixed generously with second-hand information…

     … what I tell you in the pages to follow is quite accurate and reliable, not because it comes from me, but because it comes from a large collection of recent medical literature dealing with what hormones do for and to human beings.

     p. 14-15

     estrogen, progesterone and testosterone… are in the bloodstream of both male and female at all times … They are in full form in very small amounts, but the greatest amounts are bound to serum proteins and released as the need is made known … destruction or breakdown of these hormones in the liver cells is efficient and without harm to the individual in the short and the long term.  It is the damaged liver (from infection and/or substance abuse) that has a real problem…

     p. 36

Larger studies … indicate strongly that estrogen use does not pose a major concern for developing liver disease … in one study of 303 M-F transsexual individuals,

{ words between curly brackets are Marsha’s paraphrasing of a long paragraph }

{ 22 had adverse liver changes, in 12 changes the function returned to normal even with continued use, of other 10, six had history of overuse of alcohol, eight had history of hepatitis.}

Of the 22, only two individuals had no known reason … the presumption is that the hormone regimen may have been influential … This was considerably less than 1%.  This should reassure those using hormones, with no history of liver disease or potential for it with alcohol abuse … Estrogen is metabolized in the liver, to be sure, but a healthy liver handles it well indeed.

Personal accounts, Now back to Marsha


I’ve been on various amounts of hormones for 8 months now.  No major unexpected emotional changes.  I tear up more often and have cried a couple of times in the past couple of months, but nothing major.  The most times I really notice ups and downs is while I’m reading the logs or Subversive, so many similar feelings and experiences to mine.  I’ve always been quiet and non-aggressive so there’s no easy gauge there.  What I’d really like is a nice stress free month to better observe emotional changes but haven’t had such luck so far.  And no, the decision to start the hormones wasn’t stress induced, I’ve thought about it for 14-16 years, back before high school chemistry I would think, get a bunch of the right elements and just whip up some synthetics.


First, it probably hasn’t helped trying to lose weight at the same time as doing hormones.  Dropping fat intake means the fat has to either redistribute or have slow development.  Having never gone into the “male” thing, I’ve always had relatively soft skin.  Only ‘bad’ effects I’ve seemed to have is GI disturbances the first few days of my cycle and the few days right before adding Provera. 

I’ve somewhat avoided doing any measurements to keep from being discouraged, also I have to remember that it usually takes years even for genetic women, so I should be patient.  But, I’m not saying no changes have taken effect.  The “male fat chest” I had has become more feminine and sensitive.  And speaking of comparisons, the thing I would suggest doing, now that I missed my chance, is before and after semi-nude photos.  That way one has an objective view of the positive changes.

Different types of hormones effect and are absorbed differently for different people. While the Estinyl, Premarin and injections all seem to work for me one of the latter two seems to definitely cause more pleasant tenderness in my breasts; I’m not quite sure which (hormone type, not breast) but will know within a month.

In the last 3 weeks I’ve managed to break 8 of my fingernails. I’ve no idea if injections were that powerful and it was brittleness I’d never had before, or if it was just coincidence.

I’m not much of an off-the-cuff speaker or writer, so if you have any questions bring them up during a chat or mail.



Subj:  Inverness One Touch

From: JaniceTV

To:     Melanie XX

Just wanted to let you know that I have been able to locate an Inverness One Touch with help from Karen Day and Heather.   With a call to an 1-800-631-0860, its easy to mail order one.  They recommend the purchase of two extra “stylets” for $5.00.   The price of the One Touch is $35.00 and $2.00 shipping and handling.  The address in case anybody else needs it is:  17-10 Willow, Fair Lawn, NJ  07410.

I appreciate all of your help, and can hardly wait to zap my way to smoothness.





Contributed by Marsha J, Gender Room Secretary

Attendee Stats as of October 1992

For you spatial thinkers,

Geographic distribution

AZ.   3  BC.   1  CA.  22  CO.   2

  CT.   4  FL.  12  GA.   1  IL.  12

  IN.   4  LA.   4  MA.   7  MD.   2

ME.   1  MI.   3  MN.   3  MO.   3

  MS.   2  MT.   1  NC.   2  NH.   1

  NJ.   7  NM.   2  NV.   1  NY.   5

OH.   5  OK.   2  ON.   3  OR.   2

  PA.   5  SC.   1  TX.   6  UT.   1

  VA.   3  WA.   4  WI.   2  WV.   2

WY.   1

Total 142


For you temporal thinkers


Of those I have records of, we’ve the following ages

one attendee under 20

4 between 20 and 30

12 between 30 and 40

14 between 40 and 50




“Too Old to Die Young”

(From the album, “Too Old to Die Young” by Melanie Anne Phillips)

When I was young I made me some dreams,

so the praise of my days would be sung.

I got stuck in a web of impossible schemes,

and now I’m too old to die young.

I made such great plans but they turned out a mess,

and the cheats and the thieves should be hung.

I used to wear pants and now I wear a dress,

yet I’m still much too old to die young.

     Work for the future, Ignore what you’ve lost

     Pretend that the end J’s the means.

     Keep paying the price, no matter the cost,

     And don’t see the film for the scenes.

I tried to succeed, but the seed it just sucked,

though the compost was heavy with dung.

Like the Ancients, my patience, it just got me fucked,

and now I’m too old to die young.

With all of the places I didn’t quite go,

and the things that I’ve never begun,

I’ve worked like the devil with nothing to show,

But I’m still much to old to die young.

     Now is there a moral?  Why don’t YOU tell ME?

     But I’m still going to go for the gold.

     And as long as I’m kicking, my thoughts will stay free,

     And I’ll be much too young to die old.

(Copyright 1992 Melanie Anne Phillips)


May you never find occasion to say, “If only…..”


NOTE: It is my desire to make this publication available free to all who wish to read it.  However, due to copyright laws, any overall license would allow unscrupulous individuals to excerpt portions and use it for their own personal gain.  Therefore, should you wish to upload this publication on your BBS or simply generate hardcopies for support groups and friends, please write me about a free license for your specific purpose.


Number 4

October 1992