Masha shares some of the physical changes she has gone through since the beginning of her transition. She also describes how she felt after starting hormones.
OBOS Today: I was also wondering if you could talk a little bit more about — or like, about your experience physically transitioning, just in general, I guess?
Masha: Totally. Yeah, so I have been on spironolactone and estradiol for about a year and a half now, a little bit longer. And I’m so glad I went on hormones. I was really scared of going on hormones. I was scared of like — I think a lot of trans people that I know, when they’re first going on hormones, they’re scared of, like, having an unsuccessful transition in some way or, like, not getting the changes that they want, or feeling like they will end up stuck in this, like, scary in-between place. Not in the sense of like nonbinary-ness or, like, gender nonconforming identities, but… I don’t know.
I think I also had a lot of, like, internalized transphobia when I was first transitioning — that I’m still working through, that made me really scared to go on hormones, but being on hormones, I’m so glad that I did.
I have — I am still very much the presidentrix-in-chief of the itty bitty titty committee, but I do have titties, which is great. [laughs] Like, breast growth, I think definitely it took a while and I had to go on, like, sublingual estrogen, which if, if this goes on any website anywhere, my one piece of advice to any transfems who are thinking of going on hormones is to get sublingual estrogen, don’t do a pill, like an oral pill. Get the one that goes under your tongue because it works a lot better. It works a lot faster.
One of the craziest physical changes that I didn’t know could happen is I get period cramps now, like monthly. And there hasn’t been a lot of, like, research into this, but there’s a lot of personal accounts of, like, trans women who say, like, usually — or not usually, but sometimes for trans women who have been on hormones, and on a certain level of, like, a certain dose of hormones, for more than six months, a portion of those trans women will start to experience, like, a cycle.
And obviously — So I’m not, I’m not getting my period, but I call it my period, because it’s like trans period and I also cry a lot more when I’m on it.
And it basically, it’s just like, it’s just cramps, but it’s not like — at first, I was like, is this a stomachache? But it’s not, it’s something else. I don’t know [laughs], I don’t know how it compares to, like, cramps for AFAB people, but yeah, it’s wild. It’s been a wild ride.
Also, I’ve never wanted babies before and now I want a baby really, really bad since being on hormones, and I cry so much more, and I’m so glad that I cry so much more, because it feels so good to just, to just sob openly in the streets of Providence, Rhode Island, constantly.
It’s fantastic. [laughs]
OBOS Today: [laughing] That sounds like fun.
Masha: [laughs] I’m serious. I love, I love crying. I love crying. It’s so — yeah.
OBOS Today: Honestly, same.
OBOS Today: Like genuinely, same. The amount of times I’ve just, like, like I have, like, at Wesleyan there’s just, like, all the different places on campus that I’ve just, like, publicly cried.
Masha: Totally. I feel like I remember, like, me, you, and Molly, like, I don’t know. [laughing] I feel like there were times that I would just, like, walk up to Molly and she would just, like, [laughing] start crying out of nowhere in, like, Physics or whatever. I don’t know, but I — yeah, I love, I love to cry.