MY NEXT STEP.

Peter Wynn
3 min readNov 23, 2023

The other day, I went and saw my endocrinologist, and she asked about my experiences. She was mildly amused but understanding, even though it was before her time (as someone in middle age, I have the experience of having some doctors younger than me, my kidney specialist is another) when I told her about a show that featured Buffy (no, not the Vampire Slayer) and Jody, and how my mother told me I couldn’t be Buffy, yet I had a housemate whose son had a Peter Pan costume, a pirate costume, a Dolly Cowgirl costume, and HE didn’t say to his son, “You can’t be Dolly Cowgirl,” he just let him be.

I then told her about how, when I was eight, my mother sent me to Cubs, but I HATED it (my memories of Cubs are not fun ones, but of some nights when my feet felt like solid blocks of ice as it was cold, but we had to be barefoot, of one night where we had a skipping event with the leaders twirling two ropes and the top rope always hit me in the head when I jumped over the bottom one, and none of the leaders helping me or changing things, and none of the leaders ever noticed and said, “Hmm, maybe Peter would be better off in a group for disabled cubs.”). I then told her about how our morning session at my first primary school involved a morning talk, a poem recital (Forget Me Not, was a regular one), singing some science songs and some of those songs had a man singing one part and a woman singing another and the boys would sing with the man and the girls with the woman, and I preferred to sing with the woman. I also told her about how, that year, we were playing a game, and it was boys against girls and had noughts and crosses (if you answered a question correctly, you put a nought or a cross on the board). When it came to be my turn, I got the answer right, but I didn’t stop the girls. I felt like a girl, but I couldn’t be one.

I then went into how, when we did a tour of my old high school, my mother told me, in a harsh undertone, “Don’t you dare talk about wanting to do Home Economics unless you want to have an operation to be a girl.” And then, the week of my 14th Birthday, I was on holiday with my family, and I read anything I could get my hands on. I read a magazine article about a transwoman, and a newspaper article later that year. This was something I secretly wanted to do.

I then told her about how I read Clem Bastow’s memoir about how an autism diagnosis changed their life, and so much of what was written I could relate to. She then asked me if that was what caused it. I said to her, “The fact I could relate to so many autistic women, and someone near to me being diagnosed with prostate cancer brought me to the point where I thought, “Life is too short.”” She then asked me about social support, and I mentioned my friends. She then said, “There’s no doubt you have gender dysphoria.” So now, to the next step.

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Peter Wynn

Diagnosed with autism at 35. Explained a lifetime of difference.