Dysphoria is something that most transgender people struggle with in some way shape or form. Some have it worse than others and some have none at all. There is a false assumption that you have to have dysphoria in order to be transgender and this is completely untrue. What most people think of when it comes to dysphoria is gender dysphoria which is defined as the persistent state of identifying with the opposite gender and one’s own assigned sex that results in significant stress and impairment. Most transgender individuals have gender dysphoria. Besides gender dysphoria transgender individuals also struggle with basic dysphoria typically relating to parts of their bodies that don’t identify with who they are on the inside.
Dysphoria can be debilitating to some people to the point that they are unable to function on a daily basis. My dysphoria has never gotten this bad thankfully, but I do struggle with dysphoria on a regular basis. I struggle with chest dysphoria (big time), height dysphoria, bottom dyphoria (sometimes), and hip dysphoria. The part of my body I struggle the most with is my chest. I despise my chest and hate looking at it in the mirror when I am naked or clothed for that matter. Down the line I plan on getting top surgery, but unfortunately it’s not covered under my insurance and will cost me $10k. So, for now to combat my chest dysphoria I wear a binder to compress my chest. As I revealed in my binding blog I have a fairly large chest which makes binding hard for me. To help the binding process I typically wear either bigger tshirts or button ups. This helps hide my chest and provide a more masculine appearance. Even though I do these things to help my chest dysphoria it never goes away completely. My goal is to be able to save up the money within the next 5 years in order to undergo top surgery.
My bottom dysphoria is random and not something I have a lot of the time. When it does spike its evil head I wear a packer in order to help with my dysphoria. A packer is a prosthetic penis that trans-men use to help with their dysphoria and provide a bulge similar to cis-men. When I got my packer and wore it the first time it felt odd because I felt like it was this huge bulge in my pants and I’d never get away with it. Now that I have worn it several times I have gotten used to how to wear it in order to not have a massive bulge that is unrealistic. It helps with my bottom dysphoria a lot when I wear it and probably would wear it more often if I felt comfortable enough that people wouldn’t notice. I currently don’t pass as male so for my own safety I try not to wear it that often in case someone notices that is trans-phobic. There are a ton of different packers out there for transmen to use so go check out some of the websites that sell trans products. You can get the one I have which is called the Mr. Limpy for $12 on Amazon.
There isn’t anything you can do sometimes for some of your dysphoria like my height dysphoria for example. I wish I was taller than I am now, but unfortunately I am not going to grow anymore even when I start T. I’ve learned to deal with that dysphoria and just start to love the height I am and appreciate it. My hip dysphoria I hope lessens once I start testosterone and my body fat starts to redistribute. They won’t completely go away obviously, but I am hoping that the fat around my hips dissipates.
Dysphoria can cause anxiety, stress, depression, low self-esteem, isolation, and suicide. This topic should never be taken lightly when talking about transgender people. At some point in each person’s journey they deal with some type of dysphoria whether it be for a short time or their whole life. Can you deal with dysphoria? Yes of course you can with the help of physical and mental things. You can speak to your therapist as well on techniques to help you cope with some of the problems surrounding your dysphoria. There are all kinds of things people have dysphoria towards, I simply named a few that I have. Remember dysphoria is just one aspect that transgender people encounter, but it is a huge piece to many people’s issues with their own bodies. I struggle every day with mine and although some people think surgery is drastic for me it will be a saving grace. It will finally give me the freedom of something I have hated for so long. For the transgender people out there. Don’t fight the dysphoria instead embrace it and use tools and techniques in order to combat it.