I recently asked Maritza (mark) Cummings from http://www.transitionradio.net a few questions about her experience with transition:
1) At what age did you first begin thinking about transition?
- I did not transition until I was 38 years old.
2) Previous to this had you felt the classic "born in the wrong body" trans mantra?
- Not at all, I always felt different but never the typical programed response the community harps on. In my opinion there is no such thing as being born in the wrong body. It’s a neurological impairment, behavioral and mental issue, nothing wrong with the body.
3) What do you think informed your transition at the time you transitioned?
- I was programed like most are. When I went to Key West for my lesbian ceremony at an all woman retreat, I was asked if I was an FTM, never heard of the term before. I was a female body builder, I took steroids and it masculinized me. I did research and it was like a run away train after that, obsessive as most are, the aspergers kicked in and I had a full transition in 6 months.
4) Do those reasons still stand true for you today?
- Not at all, I think much different now. But unfortunately, the changes are so deep, that it is hard to go back. I do identify as a female, I will never deny my truth.
5) When you first sought help/info from a therapist/psychologist for transition, discuss a little on the general questions that were asked by them. Discuss also a bit about the transition process then vs now and how if any do they differ?
- I found a therapist back in 2003 when I returned from my Key West trip, very few available in my area. Hollywood Florida. She did ask the very typical questions, how long have you known, how do you feel, are you happy, you know the typical narrative. In fact there are really no true guide lines for this, and these therapists are shooting at the hip, learning as they go along. As soon as I went on T, my body changed in a very short period of time. It has been 12 years since, not much change now, except I am in tune with me, no longer play the character creation that most do. It’s a game you know. Many will never admit this, but it is.
6) Before taking T did your therapist/medical doctor discuss any dangers from taking T (short or long term), if so what were they? Did they suggest any surgeries such as hysto/mastectomy in effort to reduce negative T effects on those organs/parts?
- No they did not mention side affects. I went in their with my mind made up of what I wanted, I told her, I was going for a hysto and top surgery. I had 4 visits, had my letter and my surgeries, in 6 months Dec 2003. My honeymoon in the keys was in August 2003.
7) What surgeries have you had? Any you wished you had had? Any you wish you had not?
- I regret all my surgeries, they are butchery and not necessary. Hysto and top surgery.
8) Talk a little about how if any T changed your personality. Things you noticed, things those closed to you noticed.
- Yes T does change you. Your feelings are diminished; you have less care about things. Lots of body hair and muscles, it changed my looks completely. Ego takes over.
9) How did you feel watching yourself disappear in the mirror as T began changing your appearance?
- It was exciting for me. Its what I wanted. It was part of the brain washing, but after a few years I realized I could never run from who I am.
- It took me a few months and I started passing, it was a quick transition for me.
- It was very scary for the first few years, after that I got use to it. However I still hate using the mens room, they are dirty.
- Now I have more compassion for women, I still do not connect with men.
13) If in a relationship before transition, how did transition affect that relationship? Has transition affected romantic relationships?
- It was a smooth transition for me. My ex wife met me as a female and we married legally and were married for 10 years.
14) Have you had any health issue you feel are related to transition/hormones?
- Yes. High blood pressure, thick blood, and cysts under the arm pits on occasion. I have stopped T on various occasions.
15) You enjoyed a leadership position within the greater FTM community for a number of years, offering both advice and a shoulder, what is the reason for what seems to be a sudden shift in your views on transition?
- I got sick of the trans community and how they badger people. I saw the vile behavior, the lies, I could not longer be part of that. They have deeper issues than gender problems and are in denial about it. Its time the gender specialists stepped up and did their job and looked at the deeper issues.
16) In your view, who is running the Trans Community/Trans Politic and do these Trans leaders have an agenda?
- Yes they do. And it’s a mixture of politician’s liberals who are gaining financial benefit from it. Big Pharma and organizations who are receiving grant moneys.
17) Do you think trans agenda's have affected the gay and lesbian community? If yes, how so?
- Very much so, by trying to erase them. To make them obsolete, and shaming them.
18) Do you have any concerns for children/youth being diagnosed as transgender?
- That is our big campaign, anti (hormone) blocker. Do not mess with children. Its sad that people think its helpful and they are brain washing the young in order to get rid of their gayness.
19) What roll if any do you feel money plays in transition?
- Lots of money to be made and they know it.
20) What are the greatest fears and hopes of your activism?
- I have no fears. I am one strong cookie, and passionate. Maritza is one fierce woman, lol. My hope is to get people to realize that gender is not that important, that their happiness does not rely on chopping or adding parts. That they need to love themselves unconditionally and treat the real problem which is not gender dysphoria, but instead its, a neurological impairment that affects their behavior and how they think they should be.
Thanks Maritza! Its important to hear from someone who's been through transition, lives with transition and is now fighting the transition cure.