Minerva's Breakdown 

advice for those on the verge

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Honorable Minerva,

I've been a reader for awhile and I've come to trust the type of advice you give. I'm a father of three, separated from my children because the relationships with their mothers didn't work out. I've worked through most of my issues, and soon, I'll be working my way back into their lives.

One of those "issues" is gender dysphoria. I'm a MTF transgender woman and I'm already on hormone therapy with plans for Gender Reassignment Surgery in the future. The majority of people from my past will understand. How do I explain this to my children?

Sincerely,

Out and Distraught

Dear Out,

Congratulations on living your authentic life. Authenticity takes bravery and especially with trans issues, it takes knowing that sometimes, unfortunately, while science can understand it, that isn't always the case for our family and friends. Fortunately, trans issues are in the news a lot more these days and a dialogue has at least started. Depending on the age of your children, it may be a non-issue for them. Since you are turning over a new leaf in your life, my suggestion is to be open with them. If you don't want to have this conversation alone, enlist the services of a mental health professional who is well versed in transgender issues and have a safe, candid conversation. With other family issues that may need sorted out, start off in a safe space where everyone is heard and respected. I wish you the best of luck and remember, time is often the greatest of healers.

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