I needed medical interventionBy Darcy Heston
PHOTOGRAPH by Sharon Kilgannon, Alonglines.com
I initially went to my GP in Brighton, I told them I was transsexual and that I needed to start medically transitioning.
They were realistic about how long it would be until I could access hormones and have surgery. By this point my dysphoria had gotten so bad that I’d been off work for a few months with social anxiety and depression, it was affecting all aspects of my life, not just work, but friends, family, my relationship, everything. I was at a point that I needed medical intervention, I needed to access treatment. Waiting even a month at that point would have felt like an eternity, so to be told it could be well over a year until anything happens was just devastating. I couldn’t afford to, but I went private at this point.
The process was so quick and straight-forward, I called up Dr Curtis at the Transhealth Clinic in London and got my first appointment within two weeks. He sent me away with a report for my GP, instructions for them to do some blood tests and advised me to have an appointment with a gender therapist in the mean time. I got the go ahead for T at my next appointment about a month later. Privately transitioning can be very expensive, I was lucky that my GP was happy to do all of the necessary blood work and prescribe my T on Dr Curtis’s recommendation, it was just the appointments which were the big expense at the time. But I feel very lucky and realise how privileged I am compared to many who just don’t have that option.
I’d decided years ago that if I could, I’d have my top surgery with Dr Garramone in Florida. I’m in debt now as a result but it was the best decision I ever made. It’s changed my life drastically. I had such a huge sense of relief and my mind was suddenly free to think about things other than surgery which I’d been focused on for so long. Realising how much damage dysphoria had done over the years and examining other parts of my life that had been put on hold as a result gave me major post op blues, wishing I’d have transitioned years ago. Bottom surgery is now on my mind more than ever, I know it’s something I need but right now I’m enjoying life free of appointments and surgery anxieties and in all honesty I’m just really scared of putting myself through that right at this point.
This is Darcy's testimony in Chapter Five (Surgery, hormones, waiting, National Health Service, going private, legalities) of the ground-breaking Brighton Trans*formed book.
To read more intimate, heart-breaking and heart-warming stories from transgender people, click here.
This page was amended on 19/12/2014