In 5 Steps: From F to M444 views
The following are transition steps from Female to Male (FTM) the way I see it, based on my own experiences and point of view. Those who disagree are welcome to share their own perspectives in the comments section.
First step to take is the real life test (at least between 3 and 6 months). Get a full experience, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, of what your life would be like as a man. Get a full or part time job, make some friends and live the life you choose. This phase will grant you confirmation and certainty of your choice and your ability to actually “live” with it. If not, it will get you to take some time to rethink things and study other options in case you feel it’s not right for you.
Second step will be getting the “all clear” from the psychiatrist to make sure there are no psychological or emotional barriers that you need to tackle before your next step.
Third step is Hormone Replacement Therapy. Your endocrinologist will decide your dose and frequency depending on a full blood test. Keep in mind that this is a lifelong process and at a point (usually 6 months after) becomes irreversible. This step takes care of the secondary sex characteristics such as facial hair and voice, changes are notable within the first few months and will keep progressing for up to two years, and other changes however are slower and take longer to become noticeable.
Fourth step is surgeries; whichever one you start with is your personal choice depending on your situation. Mastectomy (top surgery) is usually the first one we opt for, you’ll need a plastic surgeon and you should consult your endocrinologist because you need to be off your hormones for a while before the surgery (your doctor will decide depending on your case). A hysterectomy will then follow (I strongly advise allowing a good time to recover from one surgery before getting the other) you’ll need a gynecologist and again to consult your endocrinologist for the hormone stoppage. Last but not least is bottom surgery which is the most complicated and expensive of them all, this one needs a lot more research and I personally recommend it be done “overseas” because, after all, practice makes perfect and in this particular matter you’d want as close to perfection as you can get so look for the experienced doctors.
Fifth step is the legal name and gender change. This one requires a lawyer and a lawsuit. It is usually done after at least the first 4 steps.
At the end of it all, it always helps to take a look back and remember where you started from. It’s the journey that counts. Keep in mind that everything you went through makes you who you are; it is what builds your character, so learn from it to better yourself.
At the end of the day when you lay your head to sleep, have no regrets.
Contributed by MavericK.