Many clients who come to the practice struggle with accepting and loving themselves, loving their bodies. For adult clients who were assigned male at birth and are now transitioning to express themselves as female, so often they come with internalised stereotypes of the “perfect woman” they never were. Perhaps more so than cis-gendered women, transgender women often struggle between the body they imagine and hoped they would have, and the one they ended with. Unsurprisingly, like many other women, those who are transgender often become their own worst enemies and fiercest critics. Body image problems continue to be problematic, especially when hormone therapy has done its job, and the end result is an “ordinary body”.

A middle-aged male body, going through female puberty, does not result a young woman – but an ordinary middle-aged one. I, for example, have struggled with the double-chin, tuck-shop arms, and wobbly thighs – all things I was not expecting. Denise, my beauty therapist, who is currently removing the remnants of an unwanted beard, says that I am not much different from many other middle-aged women who come for exactly the same reason. Then she says, “besides if you are in it for penny, you are in it for a pound”, just before applying another electric shock!

So here is some gendered wisdom for all women:

1. Everyone has rolls when they bend over.
2. When someone tells you that you’re beautiful, believe them. They aren’t lying.
3. Sometimes we all wake up with breath that could kill a goat.
4. For every woman unhappy with her stretch marks is another woman who wishes she had them.
5. You should definitely have more confidence. And if you saw yourself the way others see you, you would.
6. Don’t look for a man to save you. Be able to save yourself.
7. It’s okay to not love every part of your body….but you should.
8. We all have that one friend who seems to have it all together. That woman with the seemingly perfect life. Well, you might be that woman to someone else.
9. You should be a priority. Not an option, a last resort, or a backup plan.
10. You are a woman. That alone makes you pretty damn remarkable. 💕

Categories: Self Acceptance

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