Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Tired Of Being Different

Not much to say, just that the past few days I have had this growing feeling of having gone past my emotional limits.

I can still somewhat deal with my intellectual capabilities and giftednes. It's never been easy, but with a more extroverted personality it could be an asset instead of a liability.

Intersexuality, however, is another matter entirely. It is clear that society doesn't accept or acknowledge it. That the medical world rather pretends it doesn't exist. All because it violates their very black and white view of humankind, with its male and female labels.

The result is that I am and will always be an outcast, someone who is at best tolerated. I have to endure this and have done so now for many years. However, I can't go on any longer. I don't belong anywhere. I'm a pariah.

I have been considering various methods of suicide, but it's hard to find one which just works. Maybe I'll just go for the overdose of sleeping tablets.

Living hurts. Being alone, being different, different interests, no interest for everything that is wrong about my body. Just vultures tearing off some yummy bits to then move on.

There's no joy left in this miserably existence. I really should just end it now.


Sunday, 27 June 2010


Allow me to rush through some recent updates, starting with my health. The sensitive skin on the left side of my face is virtually gone since Thursday, replaced with an upset stomach since Friday which is still bothering me.

Last Thursday I got a visit from that art academy student I mentioned before. For her graduation project she will be writing an article on the perception of male/female-ness from a personal, social, emotional and scientific view, with accompanying photographs, as she does a photography course.

One of the things she noticed before she found my site and contacted me was that while for homosexuality and transsexuality and related there are heaps of information, forums and everything, there's almost nothing on intersexuality. No forums, no truly active organizations. This while intersexuality is so common. I explained to her that unlike those other things, intersexuality is still more or less a taboo in social and medical environments. As long as things can be labeled 'male' or 'female', it's alright, but 'neither' or 'both' just doesn't work or exist in the minds of most people. Intersexuality therefore basically doesn't exist as something people are aware of.

Our conversation didn't just revolve around my intersexuality; we discussed a wide variety of topics, and in general it was quite fun. My impression of the student was positive, and I welcomed her suggestion of visiting me again to take photos and to talk some more. Her article doesn't have to be finished until early next year, so there's plenty more time.

As usual, after such an intense talk about emotions and related, I pretty much completely collapsed shortly after the student had left. I felt quite unsettled for the rest of the day, and two days after that. Friday morning I woke up feeling almost like I did the day after my appointment at the UMCG hospital, three weeks ago. On which note, I'd really like to know whether they're actually going to help me with anything or are content to see me spiral towards my own destruction.

Work-wise things are going well. I have spent a week debugging Lilium M1 and am nearing the home stretch, with just some details left in the virtual machine code. After I get M1 working properly I'll proceed with M1.5, which will have a basic VHDL compiler and an optimized (hardware-mapped) VM.

Before and after my weekly work times (9-5), however, I am pretty much worthless. I'll be feeling terrible about myself, about my life, about being lonely. I'll lack the energy to do anything useful and be frequently plagued by dark thoughts. This again shows the duality I keep fighting against. 9-5 during the week is when I only allow my rational side to do anything, outside that I let go a bit and thus the turmoil inside my heart is revealed.

Emotionally I'm devastated, ready to find a way to end this all as quickly as possible as I can not see a place for me in this world, no acceptance, no answers. I often find myself loathing this world as much as I have ever loathed anything. Why do I even bother with a world that is so screwed up as this one? Why bother at all with anything? My entire life I have been fighting to find myself, and it doesn't seem like an attainable goal. And I'm so tired from trying...

Cheque please.


Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Pushing Through

For starters I'd like to comment on the insanity that is dating sites and related. The past few days I have been experimenting somewhat with the former and come to the conclusion that it is mostly a rip-off in a financial sense, perpetrated by those preying on the money from those desperate enough for friendship or a relationship. One site even thought it was alright to force people to pay nearly 90 Euro a year for the privilege of being able to message and chat with others. Others merely nickel and dime one to death by charging for every little thing. The central theme appears to be that of spending lots of money on something which shouldn't have to cost anything at all. To say that I'm feeling disgusted at this situation would be somewhat of an understatement.

Would I like to get more friends? You bet. Would I like to experience a real relationship? Naturally, for all the benefits it could offer to my psyche in dealing with my self-image, PTSD and everything. Would I spend lots of cash on it? No way in Hell. I'd rather conquer my self-loathing and lack of self-esteem and put up more videos on YouTube or such. That seems a lot more beneficial and is more likely to garner me the kind of attention I desire.

Moving on, the past few weeks have been eerily or maybe comfortably regular. Working from 9 AM until 5 PM during the week, no work during the weekend. I'm finding it much easier to focus on what is necessary and separate work and off-time in the process. I have worked my way through some more 3D modelling lessons in 3DS Max and am feeling much more confident in my modelling and texturing skills at this point. I have finished all models for the first level of ECD and the wait is just on for some last bits before we can start putting real levels together for this game.

The past few days I have spent on debugging the Lilium simulator, Milestone 1 (M1). I have finished debugging most of it and am just working out some last bugs in the virtual machine code. Pro-tip: when using vectors use index-based access instead of iterators. It'll make your life a lot less complex. (X_x)

The next version, M2, will feature an actual VHDL compiler, extended VM instruction set, optimized VM and more goodies. It may actually be useful by then :) I'll have to see when Pieter's workplace will consider it worthy of taking a look at. For now they're really supportive already by allowing me to obtain the VHDL standards via them, which would have cost me a lot of cash if obtained via the IEEE store. I still think it's silly that standards documents could be that hard to obtain, but it's their right, I guess.

Thursday is going to be an interesting day, not so much because of the dentist appointment, but more because of the visit I'm receiving afterwards. A few weeks ago I got a message from a student at the art academy in Utrecht who is doing her final project on intersexuality and after finding my site would like to talk with me about it. Hence she's dropping by for a few hours on Thursday. While I'm not 100% sure about the details of her project, I nevertheless am sure it'll benefit my cause of making intersexuality more well-known.

Finally, I may have mentioned before that the skin on the left side of my face has been really sensitive and painful, combined with flashes of headache. I am still having this issue, which hasn't subsided for weeks now. Pieter has been urging me to pay a visit to the GP in case it isn't caused by stress, but I really fail to see the point of relying on the medical system for anything more complex than a cold at this point.


Thursday, 10 June 2010

Fearful On The Edge

If I have to make up the balance of my life at this point, then all I can say is that it's most precarious. While I was able to work relatively normally for the past few months, my emotional issues are once again beginning to affect even that aspect of my life. The past three days I have had this case of painfully sensitive skin on the left side of my face, with occasional stabbing pain plus a continuous headache in that area as well. Coincidentally this occurred right after a little mishap at the pool last Sunday when I got launched into the water at an unfortunate angle and managed to injure my lower back. As an aside I would like to extend my heart-felt thanks to Ivy and her husband, the Chinese couple who have helped me before and from whom I have only ever felt warmth and kindness.

So anyway, I spent Monday being all bedridden and drugged up on Pieter's prescription painkillers with only one position (lying on my side) not being extremely painful. By the end of the day the pain began to recede, but that's when I first noticed this painful skin on my face, concentrated around my left eyesocket. On Tuesday it was even more painful, Wednesday topping the level of pure agony even more, with me wrestling through the day in a somewhat dazed state. These days I also suffered from an old friend: extreme hyperventilation, with me unable to breathe properly for hours despite every breathing exercise I could think of.

Today I woke up with the sudden realization that the pain was virtually gone, with the affected skin area only being somewhat sensitive, and me feeling great in general. This lasted until later that afternoon, when I got a really bad case of hyperventilation, forcing me to find some source of distraction. I ended up reading in my current book while trying to relax in bed, yet I had to put the book away multiple times because I was pretty much choking. By the time Pieter got home from his work, I was pretty much in tears from the sheer pain and frustration.

During dinner I felt alright for a while again, then afterwards the hyperventilating started again, until I decided to retire to bed again, where I finally totally collapsed. I had noticed before during the past few days that releasing the suppressed emotions and frustrations inside me helps to reduce the headache and hyperventilating. In this case I had a really bad release, with me having to fight back a really strong urge to maim myself, others and destroy something. It wasn't until Pieter came downstairs to comfort me that I managed to settle down somewhat.

Based on previous experiences and research it seems pretty clear to me that the above is a result of my worsening PTSD, which seems to be reaching a critical stage, most of all due to the causes still being present and there being no alternative treatment. Considering earlier outbursts the past few days it seems clear to me that the right - or wrong - set of impulses could push me far enough to make that last fatal mistake. One of the halmarks of PTSD is that it precludes rational thought, and I fear that I am now rapidly reaching the point of no return. All I need now is some bad news from the UMCG hospital and my life could be forfeit. This frightens me to no end.

On a brighter note, yesterday's voting went well for me. I had my first name and gender scratched away on my ID card and yet this wasn't questioned. No questions were asked or remarks made at all, actually. My suspicion is that the women behind the desk might have recognized me, since a modified ID card should raise at least some questions.

What I'm also pretty happy with is this new Nintendo DSi I bought last Sunday. I got some games for it includes the usual assortment of Harvest Moon games but also My Chinese Coach, as I still intend to learn Mandarin Chinese. My first impressions are that Chinese is incredibly hard and very challenging to learn. Good thing I like a challenge, I guess :)


Wednesday, 9 June 2010

The Grand Illusion of A Monetary, or Debt-based Economy

Today we are having national elections here in the Netherlands and the past weeks we have had to endure a barrage of debates and downright propaganda from politicians desiring our vote. Many topics discussed or merely used as a bludgeon to scare people into voting were related to finances, to work and similar items which all have one thing in common: they're the symptoms of a monetary, or as it's more accurately known, a debt-based society.

What does this mean, a debt-based society? In short, we are all familiar with the concept of money, whether it's a physical coin, bank note, cheque or a digital number on some virtual account somewhere. It is the lifeblood of society, something people are willing to let themselves be enslaved into mindless jobs, and even steal and kill for. It is also the biggest lie and delusion mankind has come up with after religion.

What is money? Imagine a society where money isn't used but physical goods and/or services are exchanged to the benefit of all. Then someone lacks the time or resources for a particular exchange, so he gives the other person an IOU (I Owe You), basically a declaration of debt which that person can collect upon at his or her convenience. Nothing of value is created, only debt. This is how a monetary system starts: a collection of IOUs, or debts which slowly coalesce in a global system of shifting debt from one place to another, while constantly adding to it.

This is the one thing I have heard no politician ever mention; how we are all deluding ourselves into believing that we have no choice but to work all our lives to earn money so that we can afford to pay for things. All the resources we need are all around us, we can do the processing ourselves or ask someone else to do it for us because we lack the skills or time.

What does it mean, to earn money? What is it exactly we 'gain'? It isn't value, as we have earlier concluded that money (which is an IOU) is in essence debt. What we are thus doing by 'earning money' is procuring some of the debt fulfillment from one side (the employer, or clients/customers) and literally pumping it to the other side where we do our own debt fulfillment as we 'buy' items or services. The monetary system thus in essence is nothing more than the exchanging of debt, shifting it from one individual to another.

Worse is that this debt can only keep growing, through the process of 'borrowing money', which is the process through which additional debt is procured by an individual from a instance (a 'bank') which has designated itself the maintainer of the monetary economy. Even countries keep borrowing money, as does everyone else. If a country or individual isn't borrowing money for some reason, there are many others who do, thus adding to the collective global debt. What does this concretely mean?

It is never possible for the world economy to be debt-free. Debt can only be moved around so someone is always going to be worse off when someone else is doing better, financially. No country will ever reach the point where the national debt is zero and will remain that indefinitely. Countries like Norway have only managed to stay without a national debt for so long due to lots of natural resources other countries wanted to buy, thus shifting the debt to those countries. Once Norway runs out of oil and other easy resources they too will gain a national debt.

One might think at this point that a debt-based economy is unmaintainable as it keeps inflating like a balloon, and one would be right. Nobody knows what the breaking point is exactly, only that crashes like at the end of the 1920s in the US and recent local or global recessions are child's play in comparison to what will happen once the cache of global debt becomes too much to bear and the entire world simply goes bankrupt.

To maintain such a debt-based economy is delusional and suicidal, benefiting only the rich and powerful who can shift their debt to those less fortunate. It legitimizes slavery, puts most of the world's population at a disadvantage, denies resources to those who need them the most and is in many ways responsible for overpopulation, pollution and many other mishaps of this and previous centuries.

The answer? To switch to a durable, social and almost paradise-like resource-based society: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j21MeTJ4rNg

Of course, I don't see any politician include that in their plans for the next four years.


Friday, 4 June 2010


This morning I woke up with an incredible headache and feeling pretty sick in general. Bright lights got quickly on my list of things to avoid. Yet despite appearances I hadn't had a drop of alcohol the day before, instead I had been exposed to an overdose of medical stuff, thanks to my appointment yesterday at the UMCG. As a matter of fact I haven't had a single drop of alcohol this year yet, and I'm not even sure I had any last year either :)

I went there together with Pieter to talk things through with the psychiatrist of the team there, particularly to see what they could still do for me. My two main points were basically: (a) to get medical recognition for my intersexuality so that I can change my official gender to female, which would make life so much easier for me, and (b) find an explanation for my body and/or some facts about which organs (vagina, prostate) I may or may not have, mostly with an eye on any possibly surgeries and which kinds of cancers and such to watch out for.

Since there is a legal basis for my first request it will definitely be considered. The psychiatrist, Jiawan, will contact my lawyer and discuss the law in question which enables this. As for the second point, they may look at some specifics as well, depending on what the team decides. Best of all is that the psychiatrist not only recognized that my wishes and desires have remained constant since I got there at the UMCG, but also that he recognizes me as being an exception, and thus that standard protocols, including the one for transsexuals, are not that relevant.

I guess it's about as good a result as I could get for now. June 9th the matter will be discussed within the team. I did feel relatively well afterwards, I thought. It was only once we got home and I got to relax that I pretty much collapsed. Before I knew it I was feeling so exhausted that I could barely drag myself to bed where I slept for a while. When I woke up I still had the annoying headache. This morning it was even worse, and it took two strong painkillers to tame it.

Today was still a pretty good day, I guess. I managed to debug the source code for Lilium Milestone 1 (M1) and get it to compile. Once I get the remaining linker issues resolved I can begin testing it and fix the bugs the compiler didn't catch. I'm feeling pretty happy I got this far in just one day, especially considering that the code in question has been written over the span of nearly two years time. I noticed that the code I wrote most recently is of higher quality than what I wrote first as well.

Yesterday I set up a developer forum for the Wild Fox project and got all developers (4, including me) to sign up for it. My hope is that it'll make communication a lot easier. As for the project's status, I have worked together with the Mozilla developer on getting the GStreamer patch integrated into the Mozilla trunk code, which I'll compile next to verify that it works. If it does I can back-port the feature to the Firefox 3.6.3 code, which will then be renamed to Wild Fox 3.6.3, and the usual Alpha, Beta and RC versions will be released prior to the stable release. Hopefully this can be done before Firefox 3.6.4 stable gets released. It would be nice to stay current :)