How did your family react to you, after you transitioned, Specifically how they respected your new identity. We don't know each other but i don't need to know you to Love you, Thank you for opening yourself to the public

J

Evey's Response

My family's response has been mixed.

I care about my family very much and I don't know that I've ever wanted for anything so much as a whole, happy family. I grew up as a child of a divorce that was never cordial and sometimes abusive towards my sister and I who shared both parents.

So I've really clung to what I can hold onto with my family and my transition has been really scary in that regard. It's been really.. It's been better than I hoped but not as good as I wish.

I have five siblings and of those I really only get to speak to two of them. I think my relationship with those two siblings has only gotten better. I've been able to emotionally open up to them, and them to me, in ways we didn't before and that part has been amazing. I haven't always been the big sister to my siblings I'd like to be and so I'm really grateful they've given me this opportunity to do better and renew my relationship with them.

Some folks in my family are supportive but there are struggles about information. As a family we've really never talked about this kind of personal subject and so a lot of the discussions that *need* to happen about who I am, how to refer to me, and so on kinda get put off. There's a lot of misunderstanding and misinformation to work through. They still watch FOX news, but they're *trying*.

Some of my relationships have been damaged and I'd be lying to you right now if I said those didn't break my heart. It's not for a lack of trying on those folks' parts, I don't think I have any family who have out and out refused me or rejected me right now, but.. there are misunderstandings about who I am, who I was, and how to adjust to my transition in ways that are healthy for all of us.

One of the most important relationships in my life is in a state of limbo right now because of this. There's this idea in their mind that there was an old me and that that person has been lost, and that I'm a new me and I am very different. And I am different, gosh I'm so different and I know that. I am vulnerable, open, feminine, and very very happy to be free of the emotional, social, and mental burdens of trying to play a masculine role to make folks comfortable. I have thrown myself into that, but I still am mostly the same I think.

So I know the rift in our relationship is... I'm not sure how to bridge that. It's genuine and it hurts me every day because I want to share my successes and happiness with this person, they're one of the most important people in the world to me and always will be. The mere thought of them has saved my life a lot of times and I don't know who I'd be without them today. I wouldn't be here, that's for sure. So every time I have a moment where I feel like I've had a victory or moved forward in some way, I really feel this loss. I feel it very deeply.

But at the same time, I can't really accept that the way I am now is anything but an improvement for me and for my life and for my relationships with others, so it's very hard for me to have conversations where someone expresses missing the old me, because I don't see an "old me" worth missing and never have. It's very hard for me to see folks so attached to the "old me" that they could see me, living as I am right now — happy, genuinely happy — and feel that something was lost there. That hurts my heart.

So this is tough right. If I could wish one wish it'd be for my family (all of them) to trust me about who I am and for us to have the space to get to know each other again. I think that process is lovely and wholesome. I've had so many friendships rekindled by this process just simply because I was able to go to people I've distanced myself from or hurt and honestly, really apologize for the ways I've behaved and the pain I've caused.

So you know, we're getting ready to enter the holiday season and if I could get one gift from my family it'd be my name and my pronouns. It would mean the world for me to hear the people I love most use this name and to give me the gift of feeling that they see me, really see me.

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