Wednesday, November 16, 2011

First hoop passed in change of my gender to female.

Tuesday was my appointment at the Howard Brown Health Center, a medical facility that specializes in transgender cases. The doctor's name was Alfred Torrence. He did a complete medical interview intended to determine if at this juncture I am suitable and medically ready to enter the passage to becoming a female. He said they never do a psychiatric evaluation because they do not consider the transgender person to have a sexual disorder. He simply asked me why I wanted to become a female and I gave him a pretty straight answer.

My taking Warfarin is an issue as hormone treatments will increase my blood's tendency to clot. I take Warfarin because my other doctors believe a clot caused my necrotic bowel of 2008. Dr. Torrence asked me if there was any positive proof that I had had a clot and I said no. This could be a game stopper.

Another possible issue is my liver, as it needs to be able to take some stress, for want of a better term me being a layman, caused by the hormones.

If these and all other issues turn out not to be game stoppers then Dr. Torrence will approve me for hormone therapy. This done, I will be given a lot of paperwork for changing my name and gender marker on some of the more important personal documents, these apparently not including my birth certificate as Illinois is said to give transgender folk a problem with it, One document the doctor mentioned was called a "safe passage". It guarantees to anyone concerned that I am legally able to use female public facilities, such as rest rooms. It was significant to me that all this paperwork can be prepared and completed immediately upon my approval for hormone treatment, rather than having to wait for some amount of time to pass for the hormones to start to take effect.

So the next step was blood tests and today I went in and gave blood for them. But at the end of the interview with Dr. Torrence he shook my hand and said I had passed the first hoop on the way to becoming a female.

Hard to say at this point what the odds are I will pass through the rest of the hoops.  No hormones would be a major disappointment, but even if that happens there's no going back to behaving like a boy. We'll see if my body is going to cooperate by getting itself approved for the next step.

There is one possible way to get some recognition of the gender change anyway, which is common law. With that I would just tell everyone I know that I'm making the change and what my name is going to be. It's not as solid legally, but it's certainly better than nothing. I don't know what all it would enable me to do.