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Should I give up HRT to save money since it doesn't work for me and is having no real impact.

I've been on HRT for 3 years, and I really have lost all hope that I will ever look like a girl or be gendered correctly or even just be treated with dignity. I'm really ugly and honestly I can tell, people lie and say well it's your personality that matters. It's really not that hard to see, and I am wondering if there is a point to spending 120 dollars a month, just for peace of mind.

  • Please don't take this the wrong way, but some girls are just ugly? This isn't even me making a judgement call on your pic, because even though I don't think you're ugly, telling you as much isn't going to change your mind.

    One of the most important things I learned during transition is that I can't transition into a super model. I am what I am though, and no one can take that from me.

    Being on hormones isn't about being pretty, it's about whether they're right for you. Societal beauty standards are never going to provide you that validation, even if you meet that standard for now. Because you will grow old, and you won't fit into them anymore. Self-love is forever though.

  • I really hope I say this without sounding rude. People who look pretty or attractive by society's standards put a lot of effort into their appearance. It's a lot to maintain your skin, hair, strength, weight, etc.

    I'm sure you put effort in, I'm not trying to discount that. I do think there are some things you could be doing to help feminize your appearance however.

    • Getting your eyebrows shaped can be a game changer.
    • Adding eyeliner or changing your approach to it can help a lot also.
    • You have gorgeous hair with great volume. I love how it is now, but sometimes a change in hairstyle helps us change how we see ourselves.
    • You may not believe this, but your face shape reads feminine to me. That being said, the effects of HRT may become more prominent if the fat could redistribute again with some weight loss/gain.

    The disappointing thing is that most of those things I just mentioned won't change, or will change very little from HRT. I hope you can find support and encouragement to do what makes you happy. All I mean to say is that you may need to explore some options in addition to things you are already doing. It is not hopeless!

  • Cis here. Your piece of mind is the one you create. If you want to continue then please do. If you feel like you are wasting money then stop. The choice is yours, always has been, always will be. Do what is best for you. It doesn't change anything about who you think you are : that's all that matters.

  • 120 dollars a month is very expensive for estrogen :/ Is that what it costs to get it legit in the US?

  • No. Because you're not a man and your body undergoing testosterone masculinization would deeply hurt you Sky. You need some serious self care. It is a lot that you're spending on hormones too and I'd look into ways that you can save costs a bit. Do you have insurance?

    You have some cycles in your thinking that bring you back to these feelings of hopelessness and despair. And I think that you feel overwhelmed a lot, like your dysphoria keeps you very on edge. I think you need to make some lifestyle changes and I think you need to work to deconstruct how you think about yourself and your body.

    • My issue honestly is, I just hate how nothing I was hoping for with HRT was happened, I don't look like any girl I've ever seen. I just feel awful and I'm treated by the public as such

      • I'm sorry you've experienced such awful treatment from other people. And it must be horrible not to have had the changes you feel should have happened. Women and girls have every kind facial shape and features imaginable. We all look different. There are loads of women with the same facial features that agonize you. And beyond that point, you yourself are a woman. You do know a girl who looks like you.

        If there's a specific way you want to look, a specific aesthetic you want to have, there are ways of achieving that. Many women in society have beauty routines involving hair and skin to look a certain way and to practice good hygiene and self care. I myself am one of those women.

  • What dose are you on and what are your blood-levels if you have them? A lot of places want to underdose you, so that could explain unsatisfactory results. Also, it’s quite hard to tell from the picture (I’m kinda face-blind and your expression doesn’t make it easier to tell things), but are you sure it really is that bad or might you just have overly high standards? And I’ll add here that being pretty and passing are two different things as well!

    Lastly, and I know that this is an uncomfortable topic: If you want to pass, shave above your upper lip and cover any remaining shadow up with make-up. That is the only thing that really sticks out to me as a telltale-sign in the picture.

  • You look just like one of my cis female friends, you just have a wider nose. Have a professional shape your eyebrows, and then you can just pluck to maintain the shape, and then put some effort into your appearance. I think plenty of cis women look exactly as "male" as you do if they don't do any hair or makeup. Watch some YouTube videos to learn how to do some subtle day time makeup for your eye/lid shape, and learn how to do your hair ( maybe a middle part with gentle curls. Use heat protection spray. That's what my friend who looks like you does, and she looks great!). Being a girl is inside you. Being recognized as feminine in our culture takes a lot of work, cis or not!

    • ^ Yup. I am cis, but au naturel am more masc than poster's profile pic. Unless you won a genetic lottery which most of us have not, being conventionally attractive is expensive, time consuming, often painful-but absolutely achievable. It just takes practice and product and an occasional procedure. It is dangerous to confuse it with a natural state of being. It's all art -smoke and mirrors and does not reflect value in any way shape or form.

  • I have social dysphoria and not body dysphoria. I'm not on HRT so I don't have any experience with that aspect of transitioning. Here is the closest thing I've got. I pay $80 a month to play D&D at my local game store. I play a female character and I enjoy it when people get my characters pronouns correct, use her name, and are socializing with me in a way where they see me as a woman. This gives me piece of mind and I think it's worth the cost I'm paying. That's not a perfect comparison, but considering the difference in having piece of mind is to me I think you're not overpaying.

    As far as body image issues, I'm not too fussed about my appearance. As far as I'm concerned I'm beautiful. On the other hand, I constantly fret about whether I'm smart enough or if I will accomplish anything in my life. And I have an ego problem. I think this might be similar concerns that we both have, but we're focused on different aspects of ourselves. I still would love to have boobs and it would be super cool if people clocked me as woman. I think the knowledge that people would see me as a woman is more satisfying to me than what I would actually look like. It would be an improvement, but I'm already rocking this man meat sack bod of mine. But I consistently worry about not measuring up to people in terms of intellect and accomplishments. I feel inadequate when I see people out performing me or when I see evidence that someone is smarter than me. It gets in the way of being friends with people and forming relationships.

    I focus on believing in myself and make it clear to myself I'm good enough for me. But it's an anxiety. I kind of learn to ignore it and focus on trying to do what I want. I remind myself it is ok if other people accomplish more than me or are smarter than me. And that modern concepts of intelligence are bogus anyway. It's an ongoing process for me. My point is these anxieties about ourselves are something we have to manage and that our self-love has to be unconditional.

    As far as other people treating us with dignity, I think people are going to be trying to crack that one long after we're dead. We can't wait for other people to treat us properly to be happy. I've found the more I divorce my opinion of myself from other peoples' opinions the happier I've been. Also, recently it has helped to realize that even when someone isn't treating me right, everyone is coming from a place of being a human person first and foremost.

    I hope some of that was relevant and helpful. Let me know either way.

  • wtf you definitely pass (tbh I'm a bit impressed)
    yeah you should probably work on your appearance (like in general, foe example maybe eyebrows?) but you definitely do not look masculine.

    (also is it ok to comment here if I'm not trans? this community just pops up every now and then on my feed)

    • Yeah it's absolutely okay to participate if you aren't trans, as long as you're doing so in good faith, which you are :) From the sidebar:

      Anyone is welcome to participate in this community but disrupting the safety of this space for trans feminine people is unacceptable and will result in moderator action.

    • I've never been told this by a random person in public

      • Okay, I'm sorry, I don't want to come across as being harassing, I came back to check on the post and see what other insights people offered. But I had to write a reply to this.

        You do realise that it would be impossible for a random person in public to tell you that you pass right? People don't just walk up to cis women and compliment them on passing as a woman. The only reason the person you're replying too can is because of the context of being in a trans community...

  • Hrt doesn't make me "pass" but it prevents me from getting more masculine. Prevents hair loss, prevents growing more facial hair, thins body hair (not nearly as much as I'd like), etc. none of it is enough to make people see me as a woman, but it's enough that I feel comfortable going to bed.

    My boobs aren't noticeable to most people, but they're technically there! Just the little bump and change in sensitivity is enough to make me feel feminine, even though a plane t shirt is enough to make them invisible.

    Do you get any personal benefits like that? You say you're spending $120 for "peace of mind", which kind of sounds like what I'm talking about about. IMO that's worth it.

    You sound depressed to me. Are you getting treatment for that? HRT didn't solve my depression, I still need antidepressants and therapy. But at least it gives me that peace of mind.

    Also just looked at your pic. We look kinda similar, and I think we look cute. And if you think no cis women look like you, you're just plain wrong. If you feel the same way about your hair that I do, then ita probably worth it just for keeping it

  • Did you talk to your doctor about it not doing anything? It might very well because you're getting too low if a dosage. (DON'T INCREASE WITHOUT SUPERVISION THO!!)

    I can't really judge if it's actually doing nothing or if you just can't see the change since it's a very slow and gradual process.

  • Looking at the pic, there is definitely hope, but time and money are probably the real problem. Eyebrow thinning and eyelashes would be helpful and only require maintenance, while makeup would make you pretty. Nothing that's masculine in this picture can't be changed with easily available beauty products. The eyebrows alone are 90% of what gives a masc vibe, and even still, your face is ambiguous at most. If you put in time and effort, you'll be more than fine.

    I don't know about your clothing, but they also play a significant role. Body language, posture, gait, and facial expressions can also help or hurt. These are things anyone can adjust and come more naturally as you practice. Even people with super masculine faces or bodies can assert their gender by wearing the right things and moving the right way. It's just harder for us to learn these things than cis women who got to learn it as teens.

    I know how I can look better outside of medical stuff, but time and motivation are not on my side. I have crippling executive functioning problems, and struggle to start basic affirming activities like shaving or skincare. However, once I start do them, I feel so much better and can finish doing things with less effort. It's just so hard to affirm when you have work and life to worry about.

    On top of that, fashion and cosmetics cost money, even if you're frugal. Being trans makes life harder, but there isn't much we can do about it. Getting off HRT will probably just make things even harder than now. Everything that makes you unhappy with your appearance will get worse, and you won't suddenly get used to it.

    Your battle right now is mental more than it is hormonal. That doesn't make it less valid or real. It's probably more difficult in many ways.