Dr. Parker’s Audiologs (March 2020)
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“Audiolog day one, urrrgh... I’m doctor Parker, Mike Parker, today marks the start of our hormonal experiment, uhhh, nothing fancy really, it’s not— doesn’t actually follow the scientific procedure it’s more just a loose thing I’m doing on the side but- but my diploma’s real, I’m just— [Audio cuts]

Okay take two, point is, for the next three months I will be putting myself on a low dose, anti-androgen and estrogen combo, because, uhhh... My si- brother came out as trans and I like to think empathy is the best manner to understand someone, so I want to see if I can manage to prompt in myself some gender dysphoria to... [Silence.] Dammit what’s the word— Ah— Yeah, you know, gain some perspective on the matter. [Audio cuts]

Aaand... [Something clicks.] There we go, that was the first dose. Day one! Woohoo! [Audio cuts] 

So five minutes in and I don’t feel particularly different yet, so might as well give more details. I chose three months because it’s long enough I should start feeling the effects of hormonal changes without being so long as to make permanent changes to my body. I’m expecting, maybe, a bit of gynecomastia at the very end of the third month, nothing severe, nothing that won’t disappear after a few months back on testosterone. Or nothing I can’t live with either if it turns out not to reverse itself, you know how fickle hormones get on a person to person basis. [Dr. Parker chuckles.] So yeah, I think that’s about it.”

 

 

    "Audiolog day seven, doctor Parker here. Still nothing to note, weirdly enough. Feeling a bit more tired maybe, exercise gets me out of breath a bit quicker I guess. Haven't really felt any... dysphoria, yet, though. From the way my brother described it when I talked to him about this experiment it can get kinda gruesome so maybe I've made a mistake, but I guess I'll count my blessings. If it gets so bad I need to cut the experiment early for the sake of my mental health I will, so in the meantime I'll take nothing over feeling discomfort."

 

 

"Audiolog day twenty one, doctor Parker... [Dr. Parker sighs.] I don't know, nothing's happening still so I didn't even bother recording anything last week. If anything I kind of feel like there's a bit of a spring in my step? Hard to describe what I mean there. Like, don't tell my wife but I'd been piling on the dishes lately- I mean, before the experiment? Always something that ended up distracting me, didn't like being alone with my thoughts, the sink and some background music... But I felt like I could actually focus on doing that task this time. [Audio cuts]

Facial hair growth has slowed down. Sure, why not, I save up on shaving cream. My hair feels a bit fuller, that's also nice. Might just be my imagination, but it looks like the bald spot receded a bit, too. I swear if by the end of this experiment I don't get any dysphoria I'll continue if only to say fuck you to male pattern baldness. [Audio cuts]

So, twenty one days of estrogen, and all I got out of it is less fatigue and more hair. [Dr. Parker chuckles.] If I didn't know dysphoria does exist I'd almost start doubting its existence there! Heck, maybe I'm just immune."

 

 

"[Dr. Parker’s voice sounds strained in this one.] Audiolog day twenty eight... Sorry, I have a cold today. Since this is doing nothing, to raise the stakes I've been talking with my brother so he gets me some of his old unwanted dresses to wear around the house. I really, really want to experience this dysphoria thing at this point just because I feel like I'm going crazy. They should be arriving later today, this is actually a morning audiolog. Honestly, kinda excited to try them on, not every day a guy gets to put on a dress. I'm here to experience new things, might as well. [Audio cuts] 

Alright the dresses are here, my brother is also here— Hey Allan, say hi to the audiolog! [Awkward silence.] Heh, guess he doesn't wanna. Alright, so... Let's start with this one I guess. The blue satin one. ...Allan, how do I put this on? [Audio cuts]

[Dr. Parker giggles.] Okay this feels kind of silly honestly. Are women's clothes all so formfitting? [Something can be heard rolling in the background.] Ah, Allan's bringing the mirror. Let's see... [Silence, followed by what is assumed to be the microphone crashing to the ground.]"

 

 

"[Dr. Parker sighs.] Audiolog... day... something, first week of the second month... [A second, heavier sigh.] Doctor Parker... Voice is back to normal. Haven't worn the dresses again since last week, but they're still down there with me in the workshop basement, I guess. Honeymoon period with the estrogen is over I think, back to the dishes piling in the sink. My wife thinks I should stop the experiment there. I have been very moody for the past week, so, I can't say I'm not considering it... Allan, uh... After we recorded the audio log we kind of had a shouting match after I said something insensitive, so we haven't talked again since... And since this has become the ‘Mike vents to a Yeti microphone because he can't afford a therapist private audio diary’, I guess I'm worried about my marriage or something? I dunno. I wish I was cuddling with Rose right now. [Silence.] Yeah I guess my skin is softer too now. yaaay. Estrogen keeps doing cool stuff to my body, but my mind is just constantly in the dumps... Uh... Huh. Wait. Is this the dysphoria I've been looking for?"

 

 

"Audiolog day forty-two! Doctor Parker here as usual! Feeling better than last week. Kind of excited I felt dysphoria, honestly, like— Finally, one month and a half of distress for this stupid experiment to bear fruits! I've felt good enough to try on the dresses again, chose the same as last time. Wearing it right now, actually. It's comfy and soft. [Audio cuts] 

For some weird reason, Rose thinks I've stopped the experiment. She's been complimenting how better I am doing this week, so I think she just kind of assumed it's because I'd stopped. [Audio cuts] 

So, okay honestly though, I know I'm excited I felt dysphoria last week but what if it was something else? Like, I'm a scientist, let's take this logically. It could've been that, or maybe it was depression? It felt similar to when I used to have depression at least. Maybe the two conditions have a lot in common, what do I know. [Silence.] Heck, or maybe it was my period, eh? [Dr. Parker chuckles.] I mean, I've been on estrogen for over a month, the timing could technically check out, haha! Can you imagine, lil' old me getting periods. [They sigh.] I wish. [Silence.] I mean that purely experimentally, uh. Don't get the wrong idea. Like, what man wouldn't want to try out what a period feels like just once? Sure would help us understand the ladies better when they complain about them."

 

 

"Audiolog day forty-nine... I've told my wife that the experiment is still on. She was surprised, but not, like... angry, weirdly enough. I've... honestly, never felt better in my entire life. This morning, right after shaving and putting on the dress, I... I stopped in front of the mirror and spun around. It felt... Like, you know how men clothes are just like, hardy, heavy fabric, like they're assuming you might wanna break out the soldering iron at any time so even your average jeans has to be adequate protection? It's like I just switched from a life of exclusively wearing heavy armor to just putting on some dang casual clothes for once. I've put down the breastplate and shoulder pads and now I'm wearing a ball gown. [Audio cuts] 

So, uh... We're past the halfway point now. Six weeks left. Six weeks more of this and then... Then it'll be back to normal, won't it. [Dr. Parker sighs.] I think I'll miss it honestly. Like, yeah I could continue wearing dresses even after the experiment, but like... I dunno. I wouldn't have the excuse anymore and people would ask questions. I set out to learn about dysphoria and learned dresses are cool instead. [Silence.] I... Nevermind."

 

 

"Audiolog day fifty-six. Doctor... You know, I've so gotten used to not needing to shave as much by now. To the soft skin, to my hair coming back. To... To feeling more in touch with my feelings than before, if I'm being honest. I... [Audio cuts] 

I... The thing is... [Audio cuts again.]

[Dr. Parker sighs.] I've spent the past week dreading for this to end. It's silly, I know. [Audio cuts] 

I'm definitely sure the thing in week five was depression now, not dysphoria. It wasn't, you know... brought on by feminine things. It was more like, brought on by the conflicted relationship I have with them instead. I've been thinking of... [They choke.] Like, I want to do more with this experiment once again, maybe... maybe straight up start living as a woman? To see what it's like, during the third month? But I'm... scared of bringing it up to Rose. [Audio cuts] 

I know she's been talking about my experiment to Allan. I think she felt sad we weren't on speaking terms anymore so she tried to play the mediator, and... it worked, actually. Allan said he wants to speak with me on Friday. But now, like... Rose, too, is being awkward around me. So I don't want to make her worry further."

 

 

"Audiolog day sixty-three. [Audio cuts] 

[Silence, then audio cuts again.]

[Dr. Parker starts speaking in a falsetto voice they keep up for the rest of this log.] Audiolog day sixty-three. This voice is killing my throat even more than the cold did, I don't think I'm doing it right. [Audio cuts] 

It's the start of the third and last month of the experiment. Allan and I went to a café and had a bit of small talk. He asked how I was doing, how I felt, how the experiment made me feel... He just nodded along to whatever I said. At the end, he embraced me and said he was proud of his little... sibling. Then he waved goodbye and left, and I just kind of felt... stunned for a second. I also told him that I had second thoughts about the experiment and that I was scared I was kind of... appropriating his struggle for fun and he just cut me off and told me to absolutely continue it, so... absolutely continue this I shall. [Audio cuts] 

It's weird to poke at my chest and feel it be... squishy. Like, it went even beyooond soft. It's the... the start of the gynecomastia, I guess. Male breasts. Breasts on a man. Breasts on... on doctor Mike Parker. [They inhale.] Ooooh, I just winced. Okay, why did I just winc-- [Audio cuts]

I asked Rose if she was worried and she said she wasn't worried, but... But I'm absolutely sure she's worried and oh my god why isn't she telling me why she's worried I don't understand if I were her I would be worried so it has to be a lie she has to be worried but then what is she worried about and why isn't she telling me and— [They scream, then the audio cuts.] 

[Dr. Parker is wheezing.] So I think I'm on my period again."

 

 

"Audiolog day seventy. [They clear their throat.] So, as... As part of the ‘living as a woman for the third month’ plan, I... I told Rose that, as a woman, I would go by another name. I told her to call me Juniper, and... 'That's such a lovely name, Juniper my darling wife', she said, I-- [Dr. Parker giggles.] I'm her wife! [They can be heard whispering “Juniper” three times to themselves, then the audio cuts.] 

Doctor Juniper Parker... Yeah, it has a ring to it. [Audio cuts]

[They speak quickly.] The breasts are fun— there I said it. Look— Look, I'm allowed to have non-standard body goals, okay! If a man wants breasts, let her have them! Him I mean! Uhh... [Audio cuts] 

Oh no, there's only three weeks left."

 

 

"Audiolog day seventy-seven. Doctor Juniper Parker. I've just listened back to the past audiologs, and... God damn, I'm such an idiot. [Audio cuts] 

The whole time while listening to them, I kept thinking about the approaching deadline, about how this would have to end and I'd have to go back, and... [Dr. Parker chuckles.] And I guess I found the dysphoria this experiment sought after all. I kept thinking back to my balding, aging old self, and I thought of going back to that and I just... couldn't. I couldn't take it. My mind was screaming no. 'No, no, no, no, no, Juniper, you can't! That's not you!' , it said, and then I was like 'wait what', and my mind was like 'wait what', and I went 'what did you just say-slash-think' and it was like 'I honestly don't know either'. So I regret to inform you all my mind is as stupid as the rest of me. [Audio cuts] 

I... don't know where that leaves me, but I have some questions I'm asking myself, I guess. If I tell Allan he'll laugh at my face. [Audio cuts] 

I just called Allan on the phone and he laughed at my face. He also invited himself to stay over the week-end, sure, why not. [Audio cuts] 

I think I... need to talk to someone about this. And I do mean SOMEONE, not a piece of recording equipment. ...Wait, is that why Allan invited himself? He wants me to talk to him about it? Does he think I'm... [Silence.] Do I think I'm...? [Silence again, followed by the audio cutting.] 

Just listened to this recording again. I literally mentioned I finally felt gender dysphoria, I very much implied it was in the UNEXPECTED direction, and, somehow, the realization still hadn't sunk in until I actually asked myself the question. God damn, Juniper. God damn you, woman. [There is a short silence, followed by Dr. Parker chuckling to themselves.]”

 

 

"Audiolog day eighty-four. Doctor Juniper Parker, local useless lesbian that was somehow on HRT for two god damn months before realising she was trans. I'm afraid I'll have to end the experiment early as I have clearly demonstrated the specific circumstances of the test cannot, in fact, determine whether a cis man on estrogen would start feeling gender dysphoria, for there is a lack of cis man to test on. [Audio cuts] 

Allan definitely helped me a lot. I opened up about my feelings. Told him I was Juniper. He was happy to have a sister. He gave me the address of a local LGBT hangout. Then he kicked my ass at Civilization and just like that the week-end was already over. Maybe I should experiment on the time bending effects of this game next. [Audio cuts] 

I told Rose, well, everything, and I kid you not she thought I'd figured it out when Allan came out and I was just using this experiment as an excuse to start HRT. She said that was the conclusion she had eventually come to, at least. I guess I'll make her listen to these files. You know, for a laugh. [Audio cuts.] 

[Juniper sighs.] So, ending the experiment one week early -- can a cis man be pushed to experience dysphoria by being injected estrogen? Results indicate cis men don't actually exist. I blame the low sample size."

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