Monday, November 11, 2013

A Trans Joke - From Me to You

To be read with a Yiddish accent:

What did the transwoman say to her optometrist when he tried to give her eye drops?

"No thanks. I already dilated today."


Natasha approved with some rolling eyes. I thought you'd like it, too.

With lots of love!

Marni :D

Saturday, November 9, 2013


Do you find that over time, if you've been having a bad go of things, that you continue to have a bad go of things? I'm sure you've guessed that although I haven't written anything in the last few months (sorry), stress remains in my house. Sure, we're content where we are in terms of our relationship to one another, but we've been trying to get out of the Phoenix area since, like, last year, and I hasn't been working.

Last October, as I wrote in a previous post, I sort of cracked. I realized that I hadn't been doing anything for myself and if I didn't choose at least one thing to do for me, I would not make it. So, I applied to USC's Producers Program.

I didn't get in.

Last Spring, Natasha had several misses on job opportunities in L.A. In early Summer, she was offered a job at a middle school out there, but the California credential office (for teachers) was three months behind, so she couldn't actually take the job. This, we found out in late July.

I also applied to some TV writing fellowships. All but one have closed and, guess what?... No go.

I did place in the Austin TV Pilot writing competition. That will definitely come in handy. Placing means that I got into the top 10%. I beat about a thousand other writers to get there, so it's nothing to sneeze at. Looks good on the old writing/producing resume. But it does me no good at the moment.

So, in August, after the school year had started, Natasha got a call from the principal of the middle school, asking if she would start in January if she held the position. Well, duh!

Unfortunately, a charter school opened up down the street and took the 23 kids she needed to fund Natasha's position.

Fortunately, the principle has a friend who is also a principal. Principal #2 said she would hire Natasha in January.

Unfortunately, the credential office HAS STILL NOT GRANTED THE CREDENTIAL! A stupid move on Natasha's part about 20 years ago reared its ugly head and sent up a red flag, which meant that her application had to go to review. The review isn't until the last week of November. We figured that we couldn't move by then anyway. I couldn't get work out there mid-year as a professor.

I'll stop there because a couple of weeks ago, a friend of mine reminded me that I'm a crazy pagan and I do things like home and spirit cleansing. I burn herbs and petals and things and talk to the Universe and make declarations and things actually HAPPEN. It's all that Jedi Force stuff, you know. You can learn all about it in the What the Bleep series. :-)

Anyway, I went home that day, discovered that I did not have a smudge stick (that's a sage bundle for you non-Native American peeps out there), so I had to improvise with stuff from my kitchen. Long story short, I walked clockwise around my house, only mildly concerned that the smoke detector would go off, and declared to the Universe that I was done with the negative crap. I was done being on the receiving end of bad news.

I have to explain something here. I am a 3rd degree High Priestess in Wicca (no, I don't practice anymore for reasons I will explain if anyone is actually interested) and I'm a Reiki Master - that I do still practice. When one accepts the role of leader in a practice that requires a person to be open to receiving energies, one also accepts that the Universe doesn't discriminate between energies that come from good news of bad news. Especially for Reiki, we are told before taking the Master position that we are basically declaring that we can handle other people's sh*t in order to help cleanse them of it. If a person doesn't really feel he/she can handle it, taking the Master position is a very bad idea because it can really mess up your life. I've seen it happen to others.

Not that my life is a clean and orderly thing, but overall, what has happened has not "messed up" my life in the grand scheme. Yes, I planned to be married to my male soul mate for ever and ever, and now that's not gonna happen. But really, I'm still with my best friend and we still work very well together as a married couple and more importantly as parents who work as partners. I've handled the sh*t that's been tossed at me. Those damned shoes just keep falling and I find a place for them in Natasha's shoe shelf if they are her size.

So, back to my story. I declared that I was done with the Universal bad news shoes. I decided to believe that I deserved good news. I deserved what I asked for, which included getting out of the Phoenix area.

Last week, Natasha wrote to principal #2 to tell her what was going on. She said that the job is still waiting for her, so assuming that the credential review goes well, which it should, she'll move in December/January.

Last week, the community college in the LA area that first hired me about 14 years ago called me to ask if I could come out for an interview. They need faculty for the spring semester. You bet I'm going! It's on Wednesday morning, so put out the good vibes!

We even decided that if both my job and hers comes through, I would homeschool the kids for the spring if we can't get them into the school we want them to attend. This one's a bit of a stretch as far as good karma is concerned. It's a private school that not only would have to have spaces for the kids, but they would also be able to offer financial aid mid-year. We certainly can't afford to pay what it really costs. Ideally, the school would come through for us on both accounts. Still have my fingers and eyes crossed.

The last thing I'm waiting for is to hear that I've been accepted into UCLA's Producers Program. Won't find out until March about this one, but I know I deserve it.

So, did my little cleansing turn things around? Maybe. I choose to believe it did. I believe that I needed to make the mental and spiritual decision to allow good things to happen. I think that enough crap and bad news built up over the last several years (plus the fact that I really just don't like living in Phoenix) that I believed that bad news was the norm.

The Dark Side was winning.

Then, I smoked up my house with sage and dried yellow rose petals and told the Dark Side, "You have no power over me!" (name that movie!) I chose to change my mind.

Yes, there is still stress, but I have chosen to handle it differently. Maybe that's what this is all about. Can I use the Force to change what comes into my life? I think I can. I believe I can.

I think you can, too. I believe that you can take what comes into your life and handle it. I think that you can use your brain and your intuition and find the best course of action. I think you can decide how to handle what you are handed, including knowing when to ask for help and also when to stop being stubborn or when to stop being in denial or when to be honest.

What becomes of you is up to only one person. We can't control everything in our lives, but we can always control how we respond. We can blame no one but ourselves for our reactions, just as we must give ourselves credit for doing the right thing. There is so little support for transfolk and partners. You should all do a little cleansing now and again to remind yourself about what the right thing is: that as a good person, you deserve good news and good things.

Friday, June 21, 2013

What Happens for a Reason

The people I love in my life strongly believe that everything happens for a reason. Science explains a ton of stuff. The sun seems like it rises and sets for the reason that the Earth is turning. That guy over there got his car smashed into that light pole and his face into the dash for the reason that he was stupid on his cell phone. I won't sit next to you or allow you in my house for the reason that you reek of cigarette smoke. Stuff like that.

I'm referring to stuff that happens which either directly or indirectly affect the course of events. Often, these happenings really suck at the time. They could be downright heartbreaking. Sometimes, they're not. Either way, these are causes that usually result in something better happening. As my faithful readers know, I'm not a believer in deities or invisible super-consciousnesses floating around. I do believe in a certain Universal Justice (thanks, Enigma, for planting that one in my head), the Force, Personal Karma. The "Eyes of Truth" that are always watching me are my own, and quite probably, my dad's mother who died when I was, like, eleven. I do believe that we tend to attract what we think we deserve and for most of us, it takes a tremendous amount of Will - that we usually forget we have - to make us think differently about ourselves. It's like when we say, "My girlfriend's a jerk. She takes advantage of me and I don't deserve that," but then eventually that relationship ends and we find another one just like it. Saying "I don't deserve this" doesn't mean we believe it.

So, because the Universe is so utterly vast and full of so much stuff that we mainly don't understand, the invisible connections between living things and the other energies in other things, stuff happens that can seem really bad at the time but then we look back at it and realize that if that hadn't happened, this other really awesome thing would not have happened.

It's like what happened this week. I was scheduled to have a partial cornea transplant on Thursday (yep, it happened again), but on Wednesday, when the surgery center FINALLY bothered to let me know that I'd have to show up with over $1100 or I couldn't use the facility, I decided to postpone it because we don't have that kind of money lying around. So, yesterday, which was Thursday, I brought our daughter to our Optometrist to pick up her new glasses (so very, very cute!) Two weeks earlier, during her annual eye exam, we discovered that her eye pressure was up quite high and our Optometrist wanted her to come back in a couple of weeks for a recheck. So, since we had nothing else to do, I asked if they had time to recheck her. And guess what? Her pressure in both eye were WAY HIGH. Like dangerously high! LIke Glaucoma high. Our awesome Optometrist called a specialist right there and he arranged to see her this morning. This morning, he checked her and he also checked her corneas. Turns out they are very thick, which is actually a good thing. The problem is that very thick corneas cause interocular pressure readings to register higher than they really are. Now, the girl does, indeed, have higher pressure than is normal, but we gave her our son's ocular hypertension (high eye pressure) drops last night and they did help. So, she's on eye drops for the foreseeable future. No Glaucoma risk, either, unless we stop the drops. In fact, as she continues to grow (she's only six), her eyes will grow, too, which probably will reduce the eye pressure.

So, if I hadn't cancelled my surgery, the girl would still have DANGEROUSLY HIGH eye pressure in both eyes. It only takes days to trigger Glaucoma at those levels. Everything happens for a reason.

Did I marry a transsexual for a reason? Yes. I fell in love with the man who then became the woman. If I hadn't married the man, we wouldn't have made our super awesome-o kids. I wouldn't have had those first seven years of mainly total awesomeness. If I hadn't married Natasha, she would have not been with someone who would be able to support her when her subconscious mind let it all go. Natasha's transition has taught me about who I am and how strong I really am. No, I'm not thankful all this happened. Don't be silly. But stuff happened and I learned some valuable things about myself that I can now pass on to my children. I live by example.

The fact about me is that I've been through a lot of... stuff. I'm not going to list it for you, but the bottom line is that as strong as I can be for other people, I generally didn't think much of myself. I didn't understand it when the man who was Natasha wanted to be with me... because let me tell you... that man was handsome! I never considered myself more than average in the looks department. I knew I was very smart, but I never figured that it helped me much because I made silly and stupid mistakes. The stuff I've been through was not so much traumatic as much as it was a lot. It's like, throughout my life, one thing after another would happen to me or around me. They would pile up and ultimately, those things that happened were things that only I could face. They were up to me, as much as my parents or friends would want to help. My motto was, "I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop." They say that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, but the truth is that for lots of people, those things that don't kill them make them weaker. They get beaten down. For me, I didn't get beaten down for one simple reason: I believed that I had no choice but to press on through the mess. I felt this way because the other option was to get stuck in that mess like something sticky, smelly and heavy. Tar, maybe? I walked around, waiting for that other shoe to fall from the sky, so if I didn't get out of the current mess, that shoe would get stuck in the sticky, stinky, heavy tar and make it all that much heavier. Trust me: I tried that a few times. It's called "depression."

I can look back over my life and say that every crappy, inconvenient, heart-breaking wrench (or shoe) that came at me prepared me to be able to support Natasha through her transition. Quite possibly, I thought I deserved the shoes. I don't doubt that because I didn't think very highly of myself. But then, I also must have thought that if I could get out from the tar, the success would make me feel better about myself. It didn't. Until now.

The future of our marriage is still uncertain. But what in life is certain? If our son has anything to say about it, even death won't be certain! :-) What I know as a result of all this is that I am a very strong person who can roll with the punches and come out of it because I am capable. I also know that I am more than just a loyal friend. This goes beyond loyalty. Those who are in my heart know from these past four years that there is nothing I won't do for them. I might not like it. It might break my heart for a bit, but if it's the right thing to do, I will be there with all the strength I can muster for them.

I guess the bottom line for this post is, how do YOU come out the other side? How do you handle the shoes falling from the sky? What do you think you deserve and to what depth into your soul does it reach? Does the stuff that happens to you weigh you down or do you take it and find the right thing to do with it? Do you do things because you want others to see you as the martyr or because what you do is the right decision?

One last thing: The reason why I chose to write this particular post is because I've been thinking about a teenage transperson whose parents are not at all supportive of her desire to transition. What I've wondered, as a parent, is how do they sleep at night, knowing that the child they brought into the world, supposedly as a joint effort created by love, is hurting and alone and scared because of them? They are driving this young person away... out of STATE... for a reason. They will lose her as a child for a reason. It's not a reason borne from the right decisions, even if they, somehow, think they are. They probably didn't even subconsciously think they deserved a trans child, but again, that's science. They do, however, probably somehow think they don't deserve love from their god or something (they are very religious) and so they are doing whatever they can to win his love by shunning their unholy child who was clearly not made in "his" image. I've also been thinking about my own brother, who is a total jerk (I've written about him in the past). He thinks he deserves unconditional devotion in the face of immense fear. How his three sons (and forthcoming son or daughter) treat him when they are adults will be direct effects of their insulated upbringing.

I don't see a ton of happiness in my brother's future. Just more fear. And the thing here is that much of his world is highly orchestrated. Whereas for most of us the stuff that happens comes from our interactions with external forces, for my brother, his Personal Karma touches everything. As religious as he is, every single bit of stuff that happens to him is a direct effect of his own conscious choice. Every "reason" behind what happens to him, his wife, and his kids is him.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


So, I've been studying Celtic history and mythology since I was... 19? Yeah, that's about right... a long time. In fact, I was recently asked to participate in an audio ebook about Irish folk legends as an "expert"! Can you imagine? Anyway, the thing is, I also studied paganism in general (a story for another day) and from all of this I took away a very basic philosophy that I truly believe today and struggle to live by.

The Celts (a branch of people who originated in what is now (generally) western Russia way before the Hebrews and worked their way across Europe to Ireland. They, of course, left cultural influences along the way, including pantheons of god and goddesses who are all the same but with different names. At the core of their belief system was the idea that the physical, spiritual. and mental aspects of humans ultimately did not function at peak levels unless all three were equally balanced. Much like other "aboriginal" cultures, Celts saw these three worlds overlapping: the spiritual in the physical, the mental in the physical, etc. For peoples such as the Celts, enlightenment occurred not when a person overcame the physical, as it is in many eastern philosophies, and not when one gave their destiny over to a higher power, as it is in most western philosophies. The Celts found perfection in the balance. So you had to acknowledge the strengths and weaknesses in all three worlds within yourself and work to improve weaknesses in all three to make yourself a more perfect human being, living a life that would end one day where your body would return to the cycle of life, your mind would go in the form of memories to the living, and your spirit would continue as it was, in its world with other spirits, remaining connected to other spirits regardless of whether or not they were bound to the physical.

Short lesson in Celtic philosophy.

So, this is how I tend to see the world, although I'm still on the long road to finding that perfect balance.

I was thinking about my relationship with Natasha this morning and how I might go about explaining the changes in different terms. That's when the Celts popped into my head. I was thinking about love in particular and how I could explain to a child the nature of love. Our kids, for example, love just about everybody who isn't a bad guy, our son is just starting to get that you can love your sister, for example, but you don't marry her. So that's a start.

The point: We are not perfect beings and according to the Celts, even when we are, we acknowledge the physical as much as the spiritual and mental. I read about lots of spouses who stay with their trans partner because they are past the sexual peak of their lives and all they really want in life is to be with their best friend forever. That's wonderful! I also hear of TONS of spouses who leave at the start because they need a man (or a woman) and now that the proper sexual organ is going away, so am I.  That's okay, too, I guess, but if you think of the latter example, there's no mental or spiritual consideration. It's purely physical and the Celts would be unhappy.

When I married J, there was definitely a spiritual component to it, as there continues to be with Natasha to this very moment. When J became Natasha, the physical changed and, trust me, I have been working hard to reconcile that with my physical self. I'm still working on it and I'm far from being done figuring things out. However.... I acknowledge that the physical side of why I fell in love with J is not present in Natasha. I am out of balance in my relationship with her.

Again, I stress that I am not done figuring this out. I struggle to listen to the three worlds inside me to find the balance, and what I want is for that balance to include her. I honestly don't know what that will look like, although I can say for 100% certain that she is forever my soul mate and best friend.

I'm sharing this because more spouses are coming to me for help and I thought that, no matter what your beliefs are, if you try to take a little advice from the Celts, you might find the right balance for you. But it's very hard. It's often painful. We should be doing this anyway, frankly. In the end, we know ourselves better than we ever imagined and we feel stronger.

Heck, I advise the transfolk do it, too. That side of the conversation isn't always that perfect, either. :-)

Acknowledge what you feel and then analyze it on all three levels. To focus on one and not the other two is to ignore your own true self and, consequently, make decisions that are not necessarily best for all involved.

I don't know if this helps any, but I felt the urge to share.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

For Phoenix Area Peeps

Just FYI, on Sunday, March 31st is the Transgender Day of Visibility event. If you can come out, do it!! We'll be there some time in the afternoon, I think.

Here's a link to their FB page:

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Big Bang is a Law, Dammit!

No, I'm not going to argue here that the Big Bang Theory is absolute truth, for I do not happen to believe it. I'm a multiverse fan, actually.

But that's not what I'm writing about, either.

Picture an un-popped kernel of popping corn. It's just sitting there alone in the bin of the air popper ('cuz air popped is healthier). Inside that kernel is a bunch of stuff that, when certain outside forces are applied, will cause that kernel to explode in all sorts of directions. But consider how that kernel gets popped. Somebody has to plug in the air popper. The air has to heat up. It has to get up to speed to spin the kernel. When the kernel pops, there has to be a lid to prevent the kernel from flying wherever. There has to be a bowl placed nearby to catch the kernel. Somebody has to unplug the popper. If somebody touches the popper right after the popping, that person may get burned and that sets off a whole litany of procedures. Let's say that doesn't happen. The kernel is still hot, though. Touch it and get hurt. Ouch. Get the ice or turn on the cold water.

Then there's the whole clean up process and the optional seasoning of said kernel.

Do you see how this one little kernel causes so much... stuff?

Having planted the idea of having popcorn into your mind (whether or not that is agreeable to your taste in snack food), picture that kernel as the Transsexual individual. At some point, hopefully, that person will transform into a multi-dimensional new creature that's worth drowning in butter... you know what I mean.

We have been working on the idea of moving to another state. What this means, because of a combination of factors, is that Natasha needs to get a new job. She's been applying to whatever she can find, but as of last week, the two companies who showed interest in her suddenly vanished. She emailed them, reminding her of her existence. It occurred to us: what if they Googled her?

What if they Googled her? If they did, they'd find out that she's Trans. In the case of both companies, there had not yet been any live, face-to-face interaction. They could easily have pulled the discrimination card without worry of repercussion. Of course, there's no proof, and in the case of one of the companies, she since found out that they're still interviewing other people and haven't made any decisions yet for the next round. But before we knew that, it got me worried (well, not just me...)

What if she can't get a job? Or what if it takes so long that we end up stuck here indefinitely?

Fortunately, we then discussed alternatives for getting out of here, like me looking for full time work again, but that puts a wrench in things. Not such an insurmountable wrench, but an unexpected pain nonetheless.


You remember that Natasha got SRS last summer, right? Well, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Arizona received her name change forms and promptly informed her employer that they would no longer cover me. So even though she had SRS, we decided that she should not change her birth certificate yet because we knew that BCBS AZ would try to drop me again since they would not find our marriage valid even though it is. But this isn't the end of the story. Here in the oh-so-brilliant state of Arizona, there's a bill going through the house that will allow a person to call the police on you if you enter a public woman's restroom and that person suspects there's a problem with your gender. If that officer asks for your birth certificate and you don't present it, you will face charges for a class 1 misdemeanor for disorderly conduct. If your birth certificate doesn't jive when you appear in court, guess what? You're f*%ked. So, now Tasha is changing her birth certificate. Tell me, my dear reader, what do you think BCBS AZ is going to think of THAT!?


I'm writing about these things today because these are some of the things people need to consider when taking the steps to go through transition or even to just present. In no way am I suggesting that someone put off or forgo following his or her need to set things right. What I am suggesting is that people keep this stuff in mind when making the decision to move forward. Every decision in life has consequences - many of which we don't foresee, many of which we do. The thing is that I find myself thinking over and over again, "Never in my life did I think I would have to deal with the extra bureaucratic b.s. The usual b.s. is bad enough." I don't go around blaming Tasha for these added mounds of crap. We'd have some kind of crap going on anyway. Such is my life. I would never think to blame anyone but the bureaucrats. It's just that... well... it all really sucks.

As Steve Martin said in "The Three Amigos," "We all have our El Guapos to face. Sometimes it happens to be the real El Guapo." I love you if you get the reference. What it means for the rest of you is that we all have some crap to deal with and we have to deal with it or it will shoot yo uin the head with a pistol while admiring his new birthday sweater... I digress.

The bottom line: be a boy scout. Not one of those anti-homosexual kinds of boy scouts. Be one who is prepared! That was the point of this post. We're here, at this point, learning as we go. If you can, make a list of the facets of your life AND THE LIVES OF THOSE WHO DEPEND ON YOU that may be affected by your transition and be ready to deal with them as they come.

Be the kernel! Be a smart kernel! Pop with purpose!

...and clean up with hot, soapy water.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

What's Love Got to Do With It?

I've been reading a blog by a transwoman who also happens to be somewhat of a celebrity in certain circles. She never came out in her job. She didn't tell most of the people in her life. She "secretly" tried to transition. More recently, she shared that her spouse was not able to take being married to a woman, even a part-time woman, and the blogger resigned herself to being a husband for his wife.

Now, his wife has come to the conclusion that choosing that path is wrong for both of them. It is not fair for the blogger to trap herself in a body that doesn't fit and it's not fair for the wife that she was forced to change the nature of her marriage.

Nobody wins.

The blogger made a comment that she loved her wife as much as ever, but her wife did not. The wife's love had diminished.

Was this really true?

I have a wonderful reader who is the spouse of a transwoman. Their situation is similar to ours, with two young kids and a strong desire to support the transitioning (or in my case, transitioned) partner. She commented the other day that sometimes "love is not enough."

Could this be true, too?

In thinking about my own situation, I feel a lot of love. That love hurts sometimes, but mostly, it's just some nice, comfortable love.

If we don't stay together, does that mean that my love for Natasha lessened somehow? Has that already happened?

I don't think so. And what, exactly, is love, anyway? Isn't love the way you feel about somebody when you want to be with someone and you want to share your life with that person and you want the best for that person and you want that person to be happy?

Has that changed for me?

No. Not at all.

But I love me, too. I really do. Sometimes, one's love for another ends up clashing with one's love for oneself. That's why nobody wins in this kind of situation. It's because we love our spouses that this situation hurts so much for both parties. Love, you see, is spiritual. Physiology has nothing to do with love.

This, I think, is the problem. You can't change your physiology any more than you can change who you love and both forces are equally as great. Now, if you're lucky, your physiology attracts you to both genders and everything is wonderful. But really, how common is that? It's really not. Maybe some day, in a utopic world, we won't have genders and we'll all be able to have babies and our physiology won't stand in the way of love. But I don't think Nature works that way, not when your species is at the top of the food chain and has no problem reproducing in abundance. Anyway, here's my point:

A loss of love has nothing to do with it. I truly and honestly think that we three wives have not changed how much we love our spouses. In reality, our natural instincts are telling us that what we need is no longer present and that feels really weird in such a way that we cannot seem to get past.

It is, however, love that makes us want to keep our spouses in our lives in some way or another. It is love that makes me understand that I am still very happy where I am. It's love that twists my stomach into knots every now and then with guilt that I think about my needs that my spouse can no longer meet. Love makes me feel guilty that my physiology isn't compatible with the situation and wish with all my heart that I could change that... that I could somehow grasp more of my liberal attitude about life and sexuality and just push it a little further. Love is what I show my children so that they understand that what their Sunny has gone through was something that had to be done for the good of all.

Love kept us from running at first mention of gender dysphoria.

But love might have to be what helps us to make the tough decisions, too. Love may help us make our own transitions with our spouses from marriage to partnership or some other form of relationship. Love helps us to make necessary sacrifices, like the one we wives made when we gave up our husbands so that our best friends could be happier.

Love has to be enough. It has to be, or it will all end in ruin. We have to remind ourselves how much we love the other person so that, no matter what happens, we make the most loving and best decisions for everyone. Love gets us past the fear of the unknown. Love reminds us of the good things that have remained, even when other things have changed.

Love tells our physiology that some things are more important right now, and that we'll get to those other issues later.

Look: the bottom line is that the vast majority of transfolk can not maintain a life of non-transition. It's a part of the medical problem. It's a compulsion of hatred of one's body that only builds over time unless heavy medication is involved. We know that they aren't doing this "on purpose." It's never something they choose to have happen to themselves. We spouses and partners should understand that from first-hand experience. Sure, not every transperson handles the compulsion well. Sometimes they are completely selfish and lay it all on the table as a take-it-or-leave-it scenario, but then, how much love was there for that person to behave that way? From my experience, most transfolk in relationships do handle things much better than that, often resorting to being secretive because of fear, rather than because of some weird sense of power or ego. Regardless, if we love the transperson, we want the best for that person. Ninety-nine percent of the time, when diagnosed correctly, what is best is transition. It's a horrible list of choices for everyone, but it is, admittedly, the best choice. Suicide and/or heavy anti-depressants are the other choices.

Love tells us to just hold on, hope for the best, but accept what comes and keep trying to deal with it. Love tells us when we can't do that anymore, too. That's what we spouses and partners have to keep reminding ourselves, and that's what we have to tell our trans partners if they question it. We love them no less. We wouldn't be having these conversations if our love had waned. It's quite the contrary, frankly, and that's what makes the whole thing suck so much.

It's not about the love. Trust us.

No, my wonderful reader. Love may not be enough to keep your marriage together, but it will be enough for you and your spouse to make the right decisions and remain good, proud parents and friends for the rest of your lives.