I have to start with a disclaimer that my experiences are my own only. Even then, I feel bad. The trans community faces so much discrimination already. But, at the same time, my life is all I really know... Anyway, My partner came out as trans to me very early in our relationship. Before that, I thought we were in a lesbian relationship. He didn't start to physically transition and come out until we had been together for 2 or 2.5 years. So before that, it was the constant struggle with people "she-ing" him, me accidentally doing it, and him accusing me of thinking he was a girl. Blah. But other than that, things were good. We got engaged and started to visit a fertility clinic to see what our options for having kids were. Then he started transitioning. (Again, I'm sure the majority of FTMs don't have these issues!) It did not go well for me. Everything was about him. It is a very (understandably) selfish time for the person transitioning. And if I would have been younger, it probably would have been fine. But I wanted to get married and have another baby.
There was surgery, then follow up, then obsession with the new body. There were the shots, which I had to give. Obsessing over facial hair and muscles. It was pretty much like living with a teenage boy going through puberty. Only, he wasn't a teenage boy; he was 35. All of a sudden, all of our friends had to be trans. We couldn't get married until he got to a certain point in his transition. And so on. Then, and this is the controversial part that I probably shouldn't write, the hormones changed him. He became really, really angry. He started to get abusive towards me. So it had to end right then... I didn't have the patience or time to work through that.
There is support, if I would have gotten any, it might have prevented some of it. Atlanta is home to one of the largest trans conventions each year, and we would go. But the support group for partners of FTMs was led by a gay man who was in a BDSM relationship with his partner. I could so not relate to that! How could he help me at all?? Plus, it's all about the partner who is transitioning. I felt like I didn't get to have any issues of my own. On top of everything else, the further your partner gets in the process, the more you lose your identity. I hadn't identified as straight since my divorce, and all of a sudden I was being turned into a straight woman in the eyes of the world. And you can not out your partner just so you can assert your identity.
On top of that, people are really stupid. Really, really stupid. Even people who try to be open minded say stupid things. And they think it gives them a free pass to ask questions about how you have sex!
Anyway, dh is not okay with my past, but doesn't really bring it up. He is so not open minded. I just ignore that about him. In his mind, I'm a straight woman, and that is fine with me. That's how I was increasingly being seen, so it wasn't a huge change. He is so typical and normal, I think it was just a relief for me at that point.
The L Word, I watched up until Shane's failed wedding (for anyone who actually watched it, too!) It was okay. I had issues with the presentation of the FTM on the show. He ended up in a relationship with a man. That does happen, but certainly not always. It was like, great an actual FTM on TV... oh, and he turned gay. Awesome. I think the other FTM in the media at that point was the pregnant man. Which is fine for him. But you kind of want some representation of the majority of people who just want to live a quiet life. Or maybe I just wanted to see people who were like us. People tend to believe that what they see on TV is the way everyone is...
I should stop here. I could write a novel! It was such a weird experience because I mourned the partner that I lost, but there is no way to bring that person back. I have a lot of respect for anyone who makes it through the process with their relationship intact.