The Dysphoria Trap II

dysphoriatrap

In The Dysphoria Trap (holy crap, it has been a year), I described the relationship I have to dysphoria and the ways in which I tried to keep it under control. It should be mentioned that back then, I was not on testosterone, and dypshoria does tend to shift while you are on HRT. It can become better and it can also become worse.

For me, the dysphoria lessened a lot (and I mean a lot) in the first six months of HRT. My body changed very fast, I soon had hair all over the place, a very different voice, and other much welcomes changes. Unfortunately, after that my dysphoria got way worse. Sometimes I´m not sure I can even survive it at all.

The advice I gave in the above post, is that one should try to dis-associate dysphoria from mental constructions. Whenever your mind attempts to make a connection between breast movement, for example, and your ideas of manhood, you simply observe that this is happening and then distance yourself from this mental process, by staying calm.

You become neutral territory, so to speak. The battle rages between your brain (dysphoria) and the signals that your brain receives (looking at your chest or nether regions). Instead of choosing sides (identifying with either your body or your brain), you realize that you are neither and merely observe any feelings that arise.

In all honesty, if you can do that, you are a zen master. What I´ve found is although I was able to dissociate from this body-brain exchange previously, I am not able to do so now. Any physical trigger encourages my brain to scream murder and persuade me that I should react either by panicking, self-harming or feeling suicidal.

Battling this trigger has been my biggest challenge so far. More about this in the third part of The Dysphoria Trap.

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