First update from a very rainy Toronto….

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Well, I made it to Toronto, despite the fact that the Megabus was over an hour late and took 2 hours longer than scheduled to get here from Rochester.  Me and another girl stood there in the cold, wind and rain from 3 to 4:15am waiting for the bus, while the occasional person would come over and ask us for money or cigarettes.  This is basically the Megabus stop in Rochester…it’s not even covered for bad weather:

I found the Airbnb location with ease, although the host fell asleep and I had to kill 2 hours until she messaged me and called me on Whatsapp extremely apologetic.  I wasn’t upset or anything as it gave me the chance to familiarize myself with the area and get comfortable with using the bus and subway system, which I did with relative ease.

 

I’m usually scared of buses, but having been on a ton of buses today, Toronto buses seem so un-intimidating, even when they’re busy.  They’re also very convenient, frequent, the network is extensive and they have covered bus shelters for bad weather, which in this region is a necessity (hint Rochester Transit Service).  The subway is good too, although some stations don’t have elevators or escalators, so lugging a large suitcase around was quite challenging at times, although like London, some people will offer to help.

I walked for maybe 3 miles in the rain earlier to find the nearest Starbucks as I have been feeling so drained from not sleeping or eating properly since I left Rochester. The first Starbucks my GPS directed me to was inside a supermarket and there was no seating, so I walked another mile to the next nearest one, in the rain and with sore feet (my feet always hurt):

Aesthetically, this part of Toronto reminds me parts of North London a lot.  Some parts of it look very gritty, but I never felt threatened in any way.  I even talked to a couple of random people and walked around freely with less of a need to keep my headphones and music on at all times.  On the way back from getting my Starbucks fix, I stopped off at a supermarket chain called ‘Metro’.  I was very impressed with it, both the layout and the quality of produce.  The prices seemed about the same as New York, adjusted from Canadian to US dollars.  I bought a Greek salad for tomorrow and a bag of Terra chips and Mile & Ike candy, which I’ve eaten.  I was tempted to stop off at one of the 2 fish and chip shops that I passed, but I couldn’t quite summons the courage to do it (I guess fish and chips are a thing here, as they are in the UK).

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The Airbnb home is really nice, as is the host who I chatted to for a while when I first arrived.  They are an Indian family and the house smelled of delicious Indian food when I got back, which has now given me a craving for it.  At least there are tons of Indian restaurants in this area, given the high population of South Asian people here (another aspect of Toronto that reminds me of the UK).  I like the fact that this city is very diverse and not at all segregated.  During my 12 hours here, I think I’ve seen more interracial couples and groups of people than I’ve ever seen in Rochester.

Speaking of Rochester, I got this rather nasty response to my Craigslist ad seeking accommodation:

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As much as such abuse disturbs me and brought me down after a good day in another city, I would love to do as he asks and leave, so I replied and told him to “make me”.

As for Rochester, I cleared all of my stuff out of the house and put it in storage, except for the bed frame that I had to leave.  I did all of it while K was out at work and I just left, so she probably has no idea that I’ve gone for good.  I did more than my fair share of cleaning yet again, including cleaning the kitchen floor and counter tops, vacuuming the cat hair caked to the carpet on the stairs, and cleaning the cats food bowls and putting all of their toys in one place.  I didn’t get or expect any thanks for that and I’m honestly glad to see the back of both L and K.  K told me she was having a party on Friday night, so I’m glad that I’m far away from that place.  To cover my ass, I took lots of photographs of the inside of the house to show how clean I left it and how there’s no damage.  If K makes a mess, it’ll be on her to sort it out and they won’t be able to blame it on me.

I suppose I’ve written enough for now.  I’m really exhausted and I plan on being out most of the day tomorrow, although I don’t have a specific itinerary, but I’d imagine I’ll do lots of walking again, despite the fact that my feet hurt.

I miss Priscilla so much.  I don’t miss Rochester though.

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Too much chaos

I don’t know where to begin, but I’m reluctant to write anything too long as no one reads this crap anyway and I feel like all I’m doing is repeating myself and making myself look like even more of a joke than I already am.  People have either given up on me or maybe some derive pleasure from watching me drown.  Perhaps I should just get on with drowning and not give anyone the satisfaction of watching me drown, but I’m not one to bottle things up and I’ll most likely keep this bullshit going right until the end.

I may have found a place to live, but it’s another shared house with ‘stranger’ roommates and it’s a bit above my budget, which is going to hurt over time.  According to Federal guidelines, housing costs above 30% of my income, but with rent and utilities, I’m going to be spending almost 40% of my income on housing costs, leaving far less for anything else.  I won’t be able to afford electrolysis anymore and I don’t want to eat into what I’ve got saved, because I still want to return to the UK and I need those savings in order to make that at least financially possible.  I really don’t want roommates, especially after how badly the current shared house has gone wrong.  L hates my guts because I told her that her decision to leave and dropping the bomb on me with less than 5 weeks to go has made me homeless.  She not only took Priscilla (her cat) without even giving me the chance to say goodbye, but she just showed up and basically took all the kitchen utensils, some of which don’t even belong to her.  It’s a good job I’m high-tailing it out of here tomorrow and leaving for Toronto, because there is literally nothing to cook with and no plates (those were’t hers either).  As for K (the second roommate), she continues to make my existence that bit more miserable by being loud and obnoxious and bringing over her even louder and more obnoxious boyfriend at almost 1am (I’m not going to sleep tonight thanks to their noise and L loudly moving her stuff out).  I cleaned the kitchen over the weekend, vacuumed all of the cat hair and debris off the stairs and the floors, cleaned the cats bowls, cleaned the shit out of the kitchen and watered the plants (that she also took).  Do you think either of them have or will thank me?  The only reason I did it is became I don’t want to live in a pigsty and because I don’t want the state of the house being somehow blamed on me.  I will take photos before I leave tomorrow, especially as K has said that she’s having a going away party here on Friday night and I shudder to think of what mess they’ll make, but I will be long gone.

My care manager doesn’t ‘care’.  My insurance coverage has ended and he didn’t lift a finger until I got someone else involved.  He wanted me to take the re-certification form down to Social Services tomorrow, but I told him I can’t as I’m struggling to get everything done with packing and having to transport the rest of my belongings to storage tomorrow on my own, without a fucking army of friends and boyfriends like L and K have at their disposal.  I’m tired of being alone here and it’s situations like these that make it impossible.

I’m out of here tomorrow anyway, so with any luck my next update will be from Toronto, where hopefully I’ll feel as safe and as un-threatened as I did last time I was there.  I don’t want to have to come back to Rochester and deal with the ‘inner city neighborhood’ Airbnb guest house, in an area where someone was shot dead in the street over the weekend.

Even if I do take that room, I won’t be able to move in until July and I’ve no idea where I’ll stay in June.  I’ve looked for temporary sublets and have even placed an ad on Craigslist to say that I’m looking for a room, but nothing so far.  I guess the girl subletting her apartment for 3 months that I met on Friday must’ve been put off by my ugly presence, because I never heard back from her.  That would have been ideal as it would have given enough time to either return to the UK after the school summer holidays or find affordable supportive housing here.  The latter isn’t going to happen anyway, because I have a care manager who hasn’t been a whole lot of help and has actually been adding to my stress levels lately.  I just want to get out of this house and away from these fucking children, because that’s how they act.  I feel like most people these days are completely and utterly self-absorbed and oblivious to the suffering and the struggles of others, despite supporting causes to do nothing more than make themselves look ‘cool’.

I used the bike share to cycle to and from the clinic this morning, taking advantage of the spring weather that has finally arrived.  I cycled around 6 miles in total and some of that was on main roads, meaning I’m getting used to cycling again after 15 years of not touching a bike since I learned to drive.  I don’t exactly feel safe cycling in certain parts of this city or on main roads and I don’t like the fact that I cannot wear headphones to drown out sound and any potential abuse directed at me from random strangers,

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Options (or lack, thereof)

I know that I don’t get a lot of comments on here and I’ve probably driven away most of the few people that did comment, so I feel like I’m largely talking to myself anyway and this blog is merely a ‘record’ of what I go through on a daily basis and the issues that I’m struggling with.  I do wish that someone could give me some honest advice and guidance though, because I only really have my therapist to talk to now and he (as with any therapist) cannot *tell* you what  I should or shouldn’t do, but that is what I’m in need of right now, being as I’m impulsive, immature and prone to making terrible decisions.

As I mentioned in my previous blog entry, I saw 2 potential places to live yesterday.  One would be for a year, the other is for just 3 months.  The 1 year lease is cheaper, but it’d be another shared house situation with one or two other roommates and that hasn’t worked for me.  The other is more expensive and for a short term, but I’d have my own space and I wouldn’t be subjected to the difficulties that come with living with strangers.

The issue is that I not only want to leave Rochester and go back to the UK, but I feel like I have to leave, being as I’ll have lived here for 2 years in July and it isn’t a place that I feel safe or comfortable having no friends, no family and no backup for if and when the shit hits the fan.  I’ve had a lot of bad experiences with people, whether it be fake friends, roommates, dating and in terms of public harassment and discrimination.  It has been a massive struggle just to find a room so far and the chances of being approved for supportive / affordable housing within a month are zero to none (and I think my care manager knows this, hence the fact that he has been dragging with the application paperwork, which still has not been submitted).  As for the bigger picture, I am continually afraid that Trump is going to do something to jeopardize my existence at some point in the future and he has plenty of time left to do so.  So if I have to be alone with no emotional support, I’d rather be alone in the UK (or Canada) where at least I felt safer and had less of a ‘need’ for help.  I’m just scared that if anything goes wrong or if I’m ever attacked or harassed again, I’ll have no one and nowhere to turn and I’d be too embarrassed to report anything to the police and my care manager isn’t particularly ‘caring’.  While I could be subjected to the same in the UK, it’s less likely to happen and there are better protective laws in place.  The only thing I’m afraid of in the UK are groups of teenagers and kids, but they’re easier to avoid than adults who hate you and have no restraint in showing it.

So if I’m offered both places, I’m more inclined to take the 3 month sublease, because I really don’t want to stay in Rochester, where I’ll most likely continue to be alone, marginalized and scared.  The sublease would be until the end of August, which would allow me to move back to the UK in September, after the school holidays (as mentioned, kids and teenagers are a major source of anxiety for me).  But I liked the room I saw and  liked the landlord and the fact that he has cats.  Both places are in equally safe and convenient parts of the city, but one would involve me committing to stay here for another year, which I don’t know if I can or should do.

People keep suggesting that I seek out the transgender / queer community here in Rochester, but that didn’t go well last time and it’s very youth-oriented and I felt completely left out when I did go to a group.

Of course, I’m sure I’ll be rejected for both places, so at that point I’d have to leave anyway at the end of May.   I honestly don’t feel like I have a future or a chance wherever I go though.

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Busy 2 days….

I haven’t updated this thing for a couple of days because I’ve been too preoccupied with packing and trying to find a place to live.  I took about half of my belongings over to the storage unit in a Zipcar that I rented.  Today I’ve been packing and panicking (unintentional rhyme).

I saw 2 places today and both interactions seem to go well.  But I had some help with a new herb that I’ve found called Kratom, which I bought from a specialty store and is perfectly legal.  It took the edge off my anxiety and seemed to allow me to be more sociable.  It’s in the form of a tea and it tastes pretty rancid, but it’s a good alternative to Lorazepam and other benzos that are highly addictive.

The first place I saw was the sublet I’ve previously mentioned.  It was a cozy apartment in South Wedge, which is a very good / hipster part of Rochester and very LGBT friendly.  The girl subletting it is going away for 3 months on an internship and she wants someone to also look after her fish.  It’s a little outside my price range, but the location and the fact that I’d have no annoying-ass roommates to deal with makes it worth the extra money.  The downside is that it’s only for 3 months and at the end of August, I’d have to find somewhere else.  It might be enough time for the SPOA housing application though, so it might work.  After seeing the first place, I stopped off at Boulder Cafe, which now serves spirits and Irish coffee.  They’ve also changed the layout a bit since I was last there and it was a good experience.  Unfortunately, I didn’t get a shot of the good looking guy reading on the far right.

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I was skeptical about the second place that I saw and I was actually going to cancel, but I’m glad I didn’t.  I was largely afraid because the landlord is a cisgender male and I had no idea what to expect, but he was the sweetest and most benign guy you could ever meet and a total cat lover and a college professor,  His house was beautiful, very well decorated in traditional style with hardwood floors, but carpet in the upstairs rooms.  We talked for quite a while and he’s renting 2 rooms out in his house while he spends a year in London (funnily enough).  The area was a little further out, but it was a quaint and quiet street. 20180420_192238~2.jpg The room was small, but not smaller than the room I have now and very cozy.  The other roommate (so far) is an older lady who works for USPS and she sounds harmless, based on what the landlord told me as she’s a friend of his.  The rent is not much more than I’m paying now, but the house is a million times nicer and he has 2 cats, both of whom took to me instantly as cats usually do.  He said that he would arrange for me to meet the other roommate (his friend) just to make sure we are on the same page.  I asked him to make sure she’d be okay with the fact that I currently don’t work and that I’m an introvert.  I thought it went pretty well anyway, partly thanks to the Kratom.

I walked the rest of the way back, through a very eerie little neighborhood next to a semi-wooded hill.  The semi-woods gave me the creeps and I got a weird chill down my spine as I walked past them.20180420_193231~2.jpg20180420_192904~2.jpg

Then, the weirdest thing happened.  I was actually thinking about Priscilla, then I encountered a cat that looked a lot like her.  The cat approached me and I petted her a few times.  She meowed and tried to follow me home, but I didn’t want her to get too close to the nearby main road.  We made friends though and it was uncanny how much she looked like Priscilla and how I was thinking about Priscilla right before I encountered Priscilla II. 20180420_193323~4.jpg20180420_193321~2.jpg

Now that I’m back home, I decided to hit the Bacardi again.  I’ve done a lot over the last couple of days and now there isn’t much more I can do, beyond more packing and organizing.  My fourth and final suitcase arrived early, so now I can safely take everything but the shit I’ll need for the next 7 days or so and the 5 days that I’m in Toronto.

Hopefully I get one of the places that I saw today.  Both gave pros and cons and if I’m offered both, it’ll be a tough decision, but I think I’d go with the second place, as it’s cheaper and I’d have a guaranteed year lease.  Of course, that means staying in Rochester, which is not too appealing given the shit that’s happened to me over the last 20 months.

At least I walked 4 miles today, which is what I’ve been averaging all week.

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Tired of being ‘visible’ in Rochester (I get that you hate me, but please leave me the fuck alone)

If things weren’t so dire right now, I’d be writing “once again, one of Rochester’s finest has ruined my day”, but there’s nothing good to ruin and I couldn’t possibly hate myself any more than I do.  But yet again, I got abuse from a random asshole in a car, before he pulled up and kept taking pictures of me with his cell phone before driving off.  I almost caught up with him too and would have done, had it not been for the street being impossible to cross due to traffic.  I did manage to get a shot of his car and license plate, although it own’t do any good (he’s in the white car):

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The same thing happened before I left for the UK and it left me feeling dreadful.  Now I’m just worried that my picture is out there somewhere attracting all sorts of abuse.  The fact that this happens in the better parts of this city don’t bode well for me when I have to move to the Airbnb in a bad part of the city and that is worrying me greatly, because I’m not mentally strong enough to handle shit like this, especially not on a regular basis.

I probably shouldn’t be spending the money, but my desire to get away from Rochester is too great to ignore and this city and its inhabitants are really getting me down and causing me massive amounts of anxiety.  I’m going back to Toronto, but for 5 days this time before I have to return to Rochester and stay at the dreaded Airbnb in one of the many bad parts of town.  For some reasons, Airbnb’s are much cheaper in the UK and Canada and perhaps what I should have done is found an Airbnb in or around Toronto and just stayed there for a month instead.  I felt really safe in Toronto, even in the areas that are considered sketchy where I never felt threatened or that anyone was paying any unwanted attention to me.  Besides, it’ll stop me from wasting money on alcohol that I’m using to cope (or rather not cope) with just trying to exist in Rochester.

I went to therapy on Monday semi–drunk and somewhat high on benzos because I had too much anxiety to go out ‘sober’.  I don’t actually remember much about therapy or getting to and from there, but I think my therapist noticed that I’d been drinking.  The ‘high’ remained, so I stopped off at a bar on the way back and drank more.  I don’t remember what I drank, but it got me pretty smashed.  I must’ve been at the bar for almost 2 hours, sitting there alone while everyone else there seemed to know one another.  Even in my wasted state, I started to feel lonely and unwelcome, like a stain on an otherwise pristine white sheet.  I don’t remember much about walking back home, but I have a horrible feeling that I kissed a random guy and he gave me a can of beer, which I still have.  I was hoping that I’d imagined it, but when I went downstairs the next morning, the can of beer was on the kitchen counter, reminding me of my stupidity.  I guess I should count myself lucky that I wasn’t robbed or beaten up for being so ugly

I’m finding it really difficult to be here without Priscilla. and I still can’t believe my now former roommate L just took her without even letting me say goodbye, being as Priscilla and I were so attached.  I spent much of Sunday night and the early hours of Monday morning drinking and crying my eyes out, while K and her new boyfriend were being extremely loud until 1:30am on Monday morning.  The guy is even louder and more obnoxious than her last boyfriend and I had an awkward encounter with him the next morning when I was downstairs in my pajamas getting coffee and he just passed through the kitchen.   I’ll be glad when I no longer have to see L or K ever again, although I think both of them have left and may only be back intermittently to collect t he rest of their things.

Part of the reason I’m going to Toronto on the 25th is that I just want to be gone from this fucking house forever.  I’m just going to disappear and they’ll never have to see my ugly face again, which I suspect was their goal.  I’ve reserved a storage unit and I’m going to take most of my belongings over there on Sunday, then the rest on Tuesday (assuming I can find a Zipcar).  I’m taking the Megabus to Toronto and it leaves at 3am, so I’ll be saying goodbye to this house forever on Tuesday night.  I know K has never liked me, but L has revealed herself to be spineless and spiteful by not letting me say goodbye to my companion, Priscilla and not even acknowledging that she is partly to blame for causing me to become homeless.  I wish I hadn’t confided in L so much, being as she wasn’t being a friend, she was being friend-ly, but my autistic brain doesn’t know the difference until it’s too late and I’ve gotten myself attached to someone who either doesn’t give a damn about me or secretly hates me.  This is one ‘cultural’ problem I’ve always had with living in the United States….people are friendly, but not friends, i.e. they are more likely to be fake.  In the UK, people tend not to socialize in the same way and will not waste effort being overly friendly with someone they don’t know or care to know.   It was always easier to figure out who my friends were and weren’t back in the UK for that reason.

I’ve done about 50% of my packing and I’m just waiting for the final (fourth) suitcase I ordered to arrive so that I can pack the rest of my clothes and shoes.   At least now that my belongings are mostly packed in cases, they’ll be far easier to have shipped back to the UK when the time comes.  All I’m really waiting for now is my ugliness compensation money.

I am looking at an apartment on Friday which will be a 3 month sublease.  Even though it’s outside of my price range, I would rather take this option rather than look for another roommate situation.  While I don’t want to live alone and don’t know how I’ll cope, it’s in a good area, the apartment looks really cute and is furnished.  I’m meeting the girl who is subleasing it at a nearby coffee shop first and I seriously hope that I make some sort of good impression, because I really want to stay there, especially as it’s close to my clinic and close to the river, which I used to take long walks along.  That LGBT organization never got back to me, but I didn’t expect to find any help there beyond advising me to join the local transgender group on Facebook and at the weekly coffee shop meeting, which I don’t want to do because it’s mostly people in their late teens and early 20’s and I felt so left out and unwelcome last time.

I miss Priscilla so much.  This is all I have to remind me of her (one of her mice that she left behind in my room):

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Priscilla

My r9ommate L must’ve moved out while I was asleep ewrlier and she’s taken both her cats, :including Priscilla who I was very attached to. She know how close Priscilla and I were, but she didn’t even let me say goodbye. I knew this was coming, :just not yet. I’m too devastated for wordd. I jusf want to be dead already. My only companion is gone.

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My hopeless housing search (too many obstacles, too much bullshit and too many dead ends)

I had grandiose plans to go out today and attempt cycling again, but my anxiety and depression and the non-stop rain outside have killed those plans. Instead I’m just here in my room, emailing every potential room ad on Craigslist and getting few replies, except for those with either ridiculous demands or are containing some sort of sexual harassment (see below):

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I sent a text message to the girl whose apartment I was going to see over the weekend, but it was too far, I told her I’d try to deal with the transport issue, but she’d already rented the room. My only hope right bow is the possibility of a 3 month sublet that I might be seeing on Wednesday, but I’m not going to get my hopes up and it’s actually way above my price range, but it’s in a safe and convenient neighborhood and I’d just have to deal with the expense for 3 months. 3 months *might* buy me enough time to be approved for financial housing assistance and a place in a supportive housing apartment, but this doesn’t look good at the moment. I’ve also reached out to a local LGBT organization for help, but LGBT organizations tend to be focused on LGBT youth when it comes to housing and Iv’e never had any luck before pursuing such avenues.

I have 4 strikes against me in my housing search and all the anti-discrimination laws don’t mean a thing when it comes down to it:

  1. I’m transgender
  2. I’m on SSDI for mental illness
  3. I suffer from depression, major anxiety, PTSD combined with suspected Asperger’s Syndrome and dyspraxia
  4. I don’t work
  5. I don’t own a car

To make matters worse and to add to my current (already high) stress levels, I did some research on the neighborhood that the guest house is located in and it looks like it’s in a pretty shit neighborhood according to SpotCrime.com and Google reviews of local businesses.

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Of course, I should have researched this before, but I panicked and it was the only affordable accommodation that I could find. The fact that I’ve been subjected to several bad to terrifying experiences in the “bad” parts of this city (which there are many) and the fact that I seem to be a target here worries me greatly. It’s not about what a neighborhood looks like aesthetically, but there are a lot of very bad or mentally fucked up or drug addicted people in Rochester, many of whom give the impression that they’ve got nothing to lose. This wouldn’t worry me as much if this were a British city, which is funny because I was thinking of temporarily settling in Nottingham, which my mum keeps warning me against because it’s “rough” (hilarious, considering I currently live in one of the most statistically dangerous cities in New York State for violent crime and crimes against property). The Airbnb is non-refundable and I can’t afford to lose the almost $600 that I put down to reserve it. To add to that, it’s a guest house and I’ve no idea who else will be staying there or if they’ll be of some kind of threat to me. I rely on buses and walking and the last thing I need is to be in a place where I’m going to find it much more difficult just to go out.

I’m really angry at my roommate L for essentially putting me in this predicament and not giving a shit. She could have spoken to our current landlord about the possibility of me staying here alone until he finds 2 new roommates, but she didn’t even seem willing to do that. The fucked up part is that she works in mental health and she should know better, rather than be oblivious to the difficulties that mentally ill people face when looking for safe housing. She should have told me back in December that there was a chance she’d be terminating the lease after just 5 months.. I shouldn’t have let her convince me to sign the lease termination form effective the end of this month (April), but it’s too late now and I’m a fucking idiot. She was initially willing to stay until the end of May and I should have pressed her to do so, being as this has dropped me in so much shit. I haven’t even spoken to her since last week and I plan on avoiding her, as I’m likely to say something awful and I don’t think that will make any difference at this stage, because I’ve already told her how angry and upset I am, but she doesn’t care

I don’t want to look for new roommates anymore anyway. The only way I’d live with someone again is if it were a close friend or relative or a partner that I agreed to move in with. There are too many assholes out there and I’m just not compatible with anyone here. Every living situation I’ve been through in this city has ended in disaster and with me having to fucking move again. I can’t live on my own here either, but I hope I get that sublet because I’ll deal with it for 3 months being as it’s a safe area and I’ll probably spend that time unwinding from the bad experience of living here for the last 6 months with my current roommates.

I feel sick, both mentally and physically. I can’t sleep, I can’t focus on anything and I can’t even enjoy food because I feel nauseous and lethargic after I eat (even ‘low risk’ foods seem to be having this effect on me).

Since the 2 companies involved in my discrimination case have received the W-9 form from me, I should be getting my ugliness compensation soon. I figured that if it comes before the end of the month, I’ll just bank it and go back to the UK, avoiding another potentially traumatic living situation at the Airbnb and I’ll be gone from Rochester, Western New York and the United States forever.

If anyone out there can possibly help me, please let me know. I’m losing my mind and I’m running out of time.

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