Q: As an MTF transgender, what are the mental effects of estrogen?

As an MTF transgender, what are the mental effects of estrogen?

One of the first effects I noticed was that my mood improved. I wasn’t feeling hopeless and helpless anymore; I finally felt hope!

I began to have moments when I looked in the mirror and saw her – the woman I felt I was supposed to be. These moments started as glimpses – I’d see her, but when I looked again, she was gone. Over time, these glimpses got longer and more frequent until after a few months, I could see her – me – in the mirror every time.

Estrogen unlocked my emotions. I’d had the emotions all along, but they were locked up tight and mostly inaccessible to me. Now I could feel them, and it was glorious! And I could detect the nuances of those emotions, and could usually dig down and identify the sources of those emotions. This allowed me to finally address those sources for emotions that were painful, and work to remove the power and the pain that I felt; I was better equipped to take care of my own mental health.

I’m not sure if it was the increase in estrogen or the decrease in testosterone, but I noticed a change in how my anger felt. Before, i would experience a physical tension in my body when I was angry – at its worst, it felt like a need to physically do something – throw something, bang my fist into the table, etc. I hated that feeling!!! After, that tension has disappeared. When I get angry, I still feel the emotion, but I no longer have the need to release that physical tension. I am so much happier without that tension! I suspect this last one was related to both hormones – when I was still getting my hormone levels under control, I’d notice that feeling and learned that it was when my estrogen levels were dropping, and I could address it by increasing my estrogen levels. But since eliminating testosterone production in my body, when my estrogen levels drop, the tension doesn’t return.

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