Offering love and support #BlogJune 25

Today a group who use hate speech won the right, through the courts, to hold meetings in public venues run by local government in two NZ cities. I refuse to name them or give them any extra publicity. At a time when NZ is talking about hate speech, I am horrified at the message the court has sent. These TERFs (trans exclusionary radical feminists) should not be allowed this platform for their hate speech and violence.

As a librarian with almost 30 years experience I know the power of libraries a safe place for everyone. As a librarian, I have many peers around the country who are ‘all manner of rainbow’ and I value them as fellow professionals and thoroughly lovely people. As an artist, it’s the same thing – rainbow friends whose skills and talent I admire.

Then there’s me; white, middle class, ordinary – with a very rainbow family including a transgender great-nibling. When TERFs speak their hate they are talking about my family. It’s personal and it makes me angry. Incandescent with rage really.

What I don’t understand is their seemingly endless obsessive fascination with what other people’s have in their undies. I mean seriously! I don’t go through my day wondering if the people around me have a chest and penis, breasts and vagina, or some other mix. Who cares? Unless you’re looking for sexual contact, how is it any of your business?

This has been a terribly hard week for the transgender community for lots of reasons, so I’m sending love and support.

2 years post weight loss surgery

I’ve just had my final appointments with the weight loss clinic after my 2016 gastric bypass. I had a talk with Atul, my surgeon first. He’s happy with my progress and weight and thinks once I got over all the very serious impacts, I’ve done well.

The dietitian was pleased my weight is almost the same as when we spoke in April. We talked about how I am having to work at keeping my weight up, and some strategies for maintaining that. She recommended I start taking a Copper supplement with my Zinc.

Normally I have a quick chat with the psychologist but this time we talked for about 40 minutes. I have realised there’s stuff in my head that needs sorting, and he was very helpful. We talked briefly about body image and how weird it is to have to eat enough when you struggled to not eat all your adult life.

The main thing we talked about is that I’m increasingly aware I have always eaten my feelings, rather than live/feel them. I smothered them with food. There’s been a lot of triggers to me realising the depth of the issue and, as honest as I am online, even I’m not going to disclose them all here. But I will talk about some of it, because it may help others. There are issues around body image, sexuality, emotions and abuse I need to deal with…

After we’d chatted a bit, Steven asked me if I can easily express my emotions. Hell no. Are you a warm person? No, kind mainly, but not warm. Do you cry easily? Uh, no – I might weep watching the news particularly with stories about kids. Long pause – is that because it feels ‘acceptable’? Yes, I suspect so. Did you parents validate you if you cried as a child? I barely remember crying as a kid, and certainly don’t remember being soothed by Mum. When I think about it, I don’t remember Mum ever saying she loved me as a kid, or even as an adult. I know she did love me, but she certainly didn’t say it.

We talked about the way Mum modeled behaviour, and her own battles with food and weight, and being adopted out as a toddler. I am not blaming Mum for my issues – they are mine – she was a product of her own upbringing and I took some of it on and made it my own.

Six months ago I would have said I was fine and didn’t need to continue with psychologist help. We agreed I am stable, and doing well – with all the tools I need for long-term success – but also that more help would be a good thing. For well-being, it’s vital I do more work on my head and have decided to have further counselling. Overall I get an A+ pass mark but weight loss surgery is a journey, not a destination.

dyary sept 10-16