Thursday, April 30, 2015

Trashing Your Transgender Kid

The Ohio Highway Patrol released it's report on the tragic suicide last winter of transgender teenager Leelah Alcorn. I have written several times here in Cyrsti's Condo about how her death is constantly reinforced with me because I travel that stretch of road continually.

The report really didn't surprise me much. 

The OHP reported Leelah Alcorn, the 17-year-old transgender youth who committed suicide last December, had been frequenting suicide prevention websites in the weeks leading up to her death.
The report also explains that Alcorn's mother had found a note on Alcorn's bed shortly after police notified them about her death. The note read "I've had enough." 
The Journal-News also  reported Alcorn had been undergoing conversion therapy against her will when she died, a type of psychiatric treatment aimed at changing the sexual orientation of gender identity of gay, lesbian, and transgender youth that President Barack Obama condemned earlier this month.
In addition to Leelah's story, it is important to note here in Southwestern Ohio, we are on the LGBT "fault line."  An example is Cincinnati which has (and is) working hard to create a diverse environment but then again you don't have to travel far to find a very active religious community who I am sure still believe salvation will rid any poor transgender or gay kid's problems. 
And how about Leelah's parents? Are they still "true believers" more than true "under-standers?" I can't imagine their pain-or thought patterns. Especially now in the highly publicized transgender era. Sacrificing your child "for the cause" may be a bit much-for anyone. Including the "snake worshipers."


Same Sex Mariage

Recently I published a post here on Cyrsti's Condo from my partner Liz. She wrote a strong case for same sex marriage. Liz identifies as a lesbian and here is part of her post:

Who out there has the RIGHT to say that I am to be denied the same right to marry the love of my life and have it recognized? Whatever happened to the "separation of church and state"? This is an American Civil liberties issue, NOT a religious issue!

I received several comments here and on Google Plus:  In no particular order, Connie wrote:

 "Holy Matrimony, Batman. Liz is right! It is the state that grants license to qualified religious officials to marry two people, but it is not necessary to involve any religion for a marriage to be legal. A judge, certain government officials, and even a ship's captain can preside. Even the Catholic Church does not recognize fully any marriage that takes place outside of the Catholic Church, but it does not close it's doors to anyone who has -nor does it run to the government crying that such a marriage be legally revoked. Marriage is simply a legal contract."

And: Maria HardingApril 29, 2015 at 2:35 PM
God didn't make any mistakes!
And Regina: "Liz is right! Whatever happened to the separation of church and state?"
Thanks to all! 

Did You Hear?

From Variety :  Law & Order: SVU” has always looked to the headlines, and the upcoming 17th season is already planning to highlight a hot topic issue: the transgender community, which was recently brought to the spotlight in Bruce Jenner’s “20/20″ interview.

“We’ve already started our season 17 storylines. We’re doing a story about a transgender teenager,” showrunner Warren Leight told Variety Tuesday, the first day the “SVU” team began prepping the first episode of the upcoming 2015-16 season — which also happens to be the same day the cast was shooting the finale episode for season 16, which airs May 20. “The world keeps evolving, and there are a lot of dark areas that we need to look at,” Leight added."

If I am reading this right, Law & Order SVU doing a "dark" show on a transgender teen, means they "might" address trans bullying and violence. But, maybe Jenner is getting too much credit here. The show producers may had been noticing the real dark sides of life transgender youth face.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Liz Speaks!

I write quite a bit about my partner Liz and we talk all the time about her becoming a regular contributor to Cyrsti's Condo. This is her response today  to a question on Local 12 WKRC TV Cincinnati concerning the upcoming Supreme Court ruling on "Same Sex Marriage": (on the station's Facebook page.)

I live and was born and raised in the greatest country in the world, with a Government who crafted a Constitution that is supposed to represent Equality for ALL of it's Citizens. Immigrants from all around the world flock to this country to live the American Dream, and they can become US Citizens and get married. (YAY! That is what the American Dream is all about!) I live, work, and pay taxes in this Freedom Founded country, and I have for 52 years, yet I am not allowed to Wed and have that marriage recognized? Who out there has the RIGHT to say that I am to be denied the same right to marry the love of my life and have it recognized? Whatever happened to the "separation of church and state"? This is an American Civil liberties issue, NOT a religious issue!

Thanks Liz!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Installing Windows in Your Closet

Recently here in Cyrsti's Condo, I added a sentence or two about a transgender woman here in Cincinnati who was interviewed after the Bruce Jenner interview show. She spoke of being totally alone among other things.

I reached out on Facebook to the very active "Transgender Community of Cincinnati" Facebook page and finally I am getting feedback.  A couple local transgender women seem to have met her, but don't really know how to get in touch. Meaning, she doesn't seem to have any social media presence. Maybe she doesn't want to, but I'm thinking don't go on television discussing it. Maybe though (it's possible) I'm missing the point. As Connie said:

"Being alone is different than being lonely, however. I remember a time when I could find people within the trans community via organized meetings or activities at least two times a week. I still can, of course, but I learned that, even though my participation helped to relieve my loneliness (especially when my only alternative was to stay locked up in the house), I was still alone when it came to really living my life. It's comforting to me that I have these outlets when I might need some support, but it's up to me to establish relationships outside of the trans community so as not to be alone. I'll admit to having avoided close relationships throughout my life, when to do so would have made keeping my "secret" even more stressful than it was. Since I never developed the necessary skills to form and nurture these relationships, I am still feeling alone - as well as lonely - much of the time now."

I too, have never had many "close relationships" in my life. And, I blamed my gender dysphoria on why but then again, my brother hasn't either. 

Then, there is a difference between being social and being socialized. I was fortunate enough to be socialized outside of what's referred to as a typical trans or cross dresser groups. Before you begin to think I am making value judgments, I am merely saying I was thrust into more "real world" transition situations.

So, of course I don't know where (if any) of those categories the local trans woman may fall into. I just know many of us around here are very paranoid about someone-anyone not being able to install any windows in their closets. Because of of Leelah Alcorn. We all know what the worst case scenario could be.

Cyrsti's Conco "Cover Girl" of the Day

Marcin Majewski Madox on MTV birthday party at La Playa, photo. AKPA
Marcin Majewski Madox on MTV birthday party at La Playa, photo. AKPA
Our feature today is the androgynous Mtf performer Marcin Madox

Most Likely To?

Gay businessmen apologize for co-hosting Ted Cruz event
Presidential Candidate Ted Cruz (left) - with gay hotel owner Mati Weiderpass
Question. When will presidential candidate Ted Cruz embarrass the gay community and come out of the closet?

Cyrsti's Condo "Quote of the Day"

The tragedy of LIFE is not DEATH...

You Can't See This Post

This post is in "stealth" mode. "Stealth" is yet another facet of the transgender world that- well- fly's under the radar. By choice, you don't read or hear much about it. In my entire experience as a cross dresser,  after  I began HRT and transitioned into my life I lead today, I have never had a person come up to me and introduce themselves as a "stealth" transgender or transsexual woman. Of course, that would defeat the purpose. Why would they?

Perhaps one of the next best things happened to me today when I ran across a look from the "invisible side" from Helen Boyd's Blog, (if don't follow it-you should. What caught my eye was her post entitled "Important Stealth Voice." At that point, I jumped over to her blog and then discovered her link to another blog by Natasha from Australia called "Here, let me Show you my Scars."

When you have a chance, it is worth a visit to both of their blogs!

One final word on being "stealth". It's a huge difference than being alone. After Bruce Jenner's interview Friday night, one of the Cincinnati television stations spoke with a local trans woman who talked of being totally alone. Immediately, Liz and I tried to reach out into the local trans community to see if anyone knows her. We would be more than happy to meet her for a cup of coffee. But so far, no one seems to know anything about her. Seclusion does not equal stealth these days. It's an outmoded idea in many places.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Cyrsti's Condo "Who Is the Princess?"

Unidentified Pinterest cross dresser
I know he thinks he wants to be the princess but a tiara too???? Really?

Damn! I'm Old!

Christine Jorgensen, formerly George Jorgensen, was the first person to become widely known in the United States for having sex reassignment surgery after serving in the US Army.In this day and age when more than a few transgender women want to throw the "I am more trans than you card" and many of my most asked questions pertain to when did I know I was gender dysphoric , this newspaper article pretty much says it all: (kind of-or at least a starting point)

 ((Originally published by the Daily News on December 1, 1952. This story was written by Ben White.)
At that time, I was approximately three.

Of course my reading skills at that age were less than stellar, so I can't tell you I went out and read my parents newspaper about the story.

What I can tell you is, not so many years later I did hear of the Christine Jorgensen story and was fascinated. So, I guess my trans pedigree is blurred. I can't say the first time I read the Jorgensen story at the age of three I knew I was transgender or transsexual or any other of the words which had not even been invented yet. So i guess I am not trans enough for most. Blah, blah, blah.

On the other end of the age spectrum, I was listening to one of the national sports talk radio shows this morning and they were having quite the Bruce Jenner discussion. With no particular horse in the race, Dan Patrick matter of factly pointed out most younger peeps never knew how much of a famous athlete Jenner was. Plus he (Patrick) could not shake the idea the subject was very serious but Jenner was using the interview as a "teaser" promo show for the upcoming reality series.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Transgender "Catfishing"

Ever watch the "Catfish the TV Show"? By total accident  recently when I couldn't find my remote-again-I stumbled upon an episode  about a guy named Jamie and girl named Ari.

Briefly, a "catfish" on a site such as Facebook is misrepresenting themselves as who they really are.

So, as I banged away at my computer, I wasn't paying in real attention to "Ari" who "had a secret of sorts she was hiding from Jamie. Well, it turns out Ari was/is a transgender woman.

I thought "here we go again." But surprisingly, Jamie took it fairly well and it was Ari who basically shutdown everything and walked off.

Most importantly to me was the link MTV added after the show-providing information and possible help to transgender women and transgender men. Follow the link above and you should be able to view the episode.

Cyrsti's Condo "Sunday Edition"

KER PLUNK! Another edition of Cyrsti's Condo "Sunday Edition" is hitting your virtual front porch. It's a chilly, sunny spring morning here in Ohio so the "Joe" (coffee) is on and lets get started.

The Week that WAS or Wasn't.- Finally the much awaited Bruce Jenner interview with Diane Sawyer has come and gone. The two hour show at the least created a whole different level of who we are as a transgender community as many television stations featured a follow up interview with a local trans woman after the show. However you want to look at it, a whole new group of people were able to see we trans people are just that-humans. Not the monsters painted out by local bible thumping ministers or right wing politicians. To put this week in a "Jenner-esk"  sports reference-he has passed the (decathlon) baton to us and it's up to each one of us to run with it.

Hello Carol and Debbie!  Last night Liz and I went to a local Gay Couples get together at one of the couples beautiful home. Not long into the evening we began chatting with a lesbian couple (Carol and Debbie) and enjoyed it immensely. I should say a long term married lesbian couple. Not too long after we began chatting, I broke two of my personal promises to myself-as inane as they may be. I was not going to out myself or discuss Jenner. Blah, blah, blah. We did talk about Jenner and it was cool and as far as "outing" myself-everyone there I suspect knew anyhow. I was flattered to find several went out of their way to make me feel welcome. Good to meet both of you!

We Got Mail! I 'm going to sort through a couple which centered on Bruce (of course). The first comes from CalieApril 25, 2015 at 1:17 PM
I've got to agree. (about Bruce's media storm) The whole thing makes me very uncomfortable and I don't know why. My gut feeling is that this is not, at least right now, good for our community. Perhaps at some point I'll blog about my feelings on this whole thing. For now, it's a circus and the media - my occupation - is making the most of it. Funny how the story came out on the second day of the most important rating month of the year.....
Thanks Callie! There are no "coincidences" in the media-right? And another person who should have her own blog - Connie:
"The best we can hope for is that public awareness will open a few more closet doors, as well as a few more hearts. I think that we often forget how long it took for many of us to come to grips with ourselves and our gender identities. We need to give others some time to deal with it, as well. Whether coming out can be construed as an act of bravery (as many are saying about Bruce) or not is nothing compared to the responsibility we have to both ourselves and others when we do so. One of the most important things Bruce said was at the outset of the interview, asking that we keep a sense of humor about all of this. Humor can go a long way in easing the suffering of slings and arrows, as well as in keeping our own nobility - if not, at least, our own humility."

The Back Page:  Finally, what was the tasteless idea for a "joke" sandwich aimed at Bruce Jenner. It was part Taco and part Hot Dog. There you go. Essentially though, it doesn't matter what the sandwich was or the intended humor behind it. We (trans) have been the subject of jokes, smirks and out and out laughter- the world just needs to know they aren't funny anymore. Someday with equal rights and acceptance humor will be be fine, until then one person's "humor" is another's salt in the wound.
So there you go!!!! Another Sunday Edition in or "on the can." Have a great week!  

Cyrsti's Condo "Androgyny Personified"

Grace Jones 1970s - well known cross-dresser, singer-songwriter, actress, and model.Grace Jones - androgynous actress. Circa 1970

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Aftermath

Often you have to look past the obvious to see the effects of such a "big" transgender happening such as the Bruce Jenner / Dianne Sawyer interview last night.

According to my emails, many local ABC affiliates followed up with a local interview with a trans woman. Including WCPO here in Cincinnati. As always, all sorts of us -trans or whatever will draw their own conclusions. Personally, Liz and I are going to a gay couples party tonight (gay and lesbian.) I have wondered if I will be asked any (Bruce) questions. I doubt it and even hope not.

Why? After last night, I think the real benefit came from all the local television stations who broadcast stories of trans women (and a few good good trans men) from around their area. Perhaps the average "Joe" or "Jolene" on the street will now consider they actually know or might know a transgender person after all.

Even better, are the realizations that when famous people such as Bruce Jenner come out, the more power we have. Here is an example from yesterday here in Cincinnati. A restaurant in a restoration area downtown (even featured recently on the Food Channel) came up with a "Bruce Jenner" transphobic sounding sandwich for supposedly only yesterday. I caught the alert to it from the Cinci trans group on my Facebook and responded as did many others. One way or another, an apology was issued by the restaurant and the sandwich removed. Before the day was over.

There was even less excuse for the restaurant because of the proximity to the Leelah Alcorn tragic suicide last winter. People have short memories. Perfect or not, Bruce Jenner helps to keep our memory fresh.

Bruce and Beyond

Perhaps the biggest and worst concealed "coming out" event in transgender history has come and gone.  Bruce Jenner is trans. The event was so big that:  " It even made the news on the BBC Radio four this morning, but I was in too much of a hurry to listen in depth. Once the decision has been made to live your life in the spotlight then it is inevitable that such a dramatic change will attract attention.

I suspect that this will be another drip that wears away at the opposition. I won't say that any publicity is good publicity, but anything that normalizes our situation can only help. ~ I still won't be following the circus though."

That comment came from Paula Goodwin across the pond in the UK.  

Very simply, I could write tons of posts on Bruce- so I am going to start slow. Actually my first thoughts were this is all good but Bruce is entering a life of trans privilege. Whatever procedure she decides to undergo-she can. Although she mentioned the pain and suffering of the real transgender world all so briefly, it won't affect her.

From personal experience, I know the indescribable joy of family acceptance and her family (the Jenner's) at least seem to be genuinely nice and real. You get back what you put into kids and Bruce should be proud. 

So Paula, I'm not so sure you missed anything of great importance. I was surprised when Bruce confirmed Zoey Tur-d (sorry-Zoey Tur'S) announcement earlier that many in Hollywood knew Jenner was trans as far back as the 80's. I just wondered if was then that Zoey was dropped from a helicopter on her head for the first time.

Of course, as we all know last night's show was also an elaborate kick start publicity show for the so called "real MtF gender transition" show with Bruce on the "E"Network.  After I saw the lacy black dress Bruce pulled from his "old" closet to show Diane Sawyer (he can afford to build his own "glam room now) I had a Zoey Tur_ flashback from her first interviews. 

All in all I'm grading it a "C" which we will discuss later.

"Color Blind"-A Girl's Night In.

This week at Liz's house, it was "gray attack" night on Tuesday. In other words, the gray hair roots on our noggins were progressing nicely and had to be put back in their place-concealed.

I know there are several of you who are fortunate enough to have the budget to be able to go to a salon to have your hair colored. I just can't but wish I could! Being pampered in a salon is an experience like no other...but-

Previously here in Cyrsti's Condo I have mentioned the major trials and tribulations of coloring ones hair. First, you have to pick out the color and of course somehow get it applied to your noggin. The ways to do it are- a friend or partner (like Liz) or yourself. The last time I colored, I did do it myself and yes I did OK. This time Liz colored mine (better) but then I colored hers. A little scary. Why?

You can't just "slop it on." Especially if you have a bunch of hair like both of us do. Take my word for it, you don't want to have several spots you missed. If you rub too hard it's possible to burn the scalp so you have to use the applicator to get to those pesky gray roots.

Finally, the past colors you have used factor in. Example? Once I went to a much darker color last fall, it is tougher now to easily lighten up my hair for spring/summer. When you recolor, the end product is affected by the beginning product. (Gray)

These days, I am wearing my hair pushed back behind my ears and soft bangs over the forehead. Essentially my goal is to keep lightening the hair around my temples which gray the most and my main part on top to a softer red for the season.

We will see-literally! I should color about once every 4 weeks-just in time for my Trans Ohio Symposium workshop!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Ready or Not

Bruce Jenner in Malibu.The event we transgender women and men have been waiting for (one way or another) happens tonight (Friday EST). ABC.

Bruce Jenner and Diane Sawyer sit down for a "chat" and as predicted, it is a circus. As reported in this New York Daily News story.

"The Bruce Jenner interview is becoming the social event of the season. And New Yorkers are staying home on Friday night to tune in to Diane Sawyer’s two-hour “20/20” special with the Olympic legend.
“Of course I am going to watch it. I am anticipating it myself, "Kim Kardashian's bestie Jonathan Cheban tells the Daily News. “I think I’d be the only one in the world not watching it.”
Many are marking Jenner’s reported big reveal — that he’s transitioning into a woman — with festive viewing parties to celebrate his journey.
“It’s gonna be huge! It’s definitely one of those things to do with a group of friends, like having an Oscar showing,” says Mary Twiss, 24, who is hosting seven friends in her Gramercy apartment.
“It’s a big deal for Bruce Jenner, and also for the LGBT community. It’s definitely a reason to celebrate,” she says."
We will see. We will see. The "celebration" word seems way too intense for me. The next thing I expect to hear (and have) is "some of my best friends are transgender."

Parts is Parts?

"Would a transgender woman who agreed with Lisa be an Artificial TERF, then? 

The reasoning used by TERFs is the same as that used by those who are opposed to trans people using the bathroom of their self-identified gender. I do believe, by the way, that trans men have been allowed to participate at the MWMF all along, simply because they have the "correct" body parts and have had to experience -at least in their youth- the oppression of men over women (or womyn, which is a different sex, I guess). Male privilege is derived from the penis, I suppose. Lisa. So, one man's privilege is another woman's woe?"

This comment is not mine but another Connie sent in. 

Actually, I believe there are "Trans Exclusionary Trans Women" too who actually believe they should have their "woman" card punched primarily because they went out and bought a vagina. (Artificial Terf?) The only difference seems to me is when you happened to acquire your vagina. 

To be sure, men have oppressed women over the centuries and each other. The oppression crosses race and religious lines (especially as we are seeing today.) The only thing I have never understood about the gay and lesbian community is how long it took them to get up to speed about what the transgender community is really all about. They are now. In fact push back from major lesbian organizations was a major factor in Lisa packing her tent and heading home.

Let's face it, there will always be a segment of the world who will never understand the concept of gender versus sexuality. Part of human nature dictates the need to be part of a tribe too. Lisa Vogel is not alone in her tribe. Just the tip of the ice berg.

If I had the chance to sit down face to face with her, I would love to explain why I was - or wasn't crashing her party. Simply-I would have to try because she told me I couldn't. But, I sure would have wanted to because the festival would have given me another chance to learn about the feminine world I missed and yearned for so much. I was too far away. No more and no less. 

Lisa does not have to like me. Don't care. I can tell you in all my research my family never owned any slaves, fought in every war (back to the revolution) AND I never oppressed a girl/woman in my life. Put them up on pedestals yes. Oppressed no. 

That's why indeed I would have enjoyed going to Lisa's festival. You all know me enough to figure I would enjoy wondering around with Liz enjoying an adult beverage and listening to the music. Forget how much "passing privilege" I have or androgynous I look and to hell with the semantics of what a trans woman versus woymn is. Life is too short. 

Put all this energy into making sure our daughters (transgender or not) are empowered and have a better life. One of inclusion-not exclusion.

Thursday, April 23, 2015


April 22, 2015 - TLDEF is thrilled to announce a settlement in a historic federal lawsuit against the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles on behalf of Chase Culpepper. The settlement is featured in  Los Angeles Times.

Chase is a transgender girl who was targeted for discrimination in March 2014 when she attempted to get her first driver’s license. She was told by DMV employees that she could not take her photo unless she removed the makeup that she wears on a regular basis. They told her that she needed to “look male” in her license photo and refused to provide her with her driver’s license if she did not remove the makeup she was wearing.

For more, follow the link above.

Lisa, Terf's and Transgender Privilege

We mentioned here in Cyrsti's Condo yesterday the embattled Michigan Womyn's Festival final year would be this season. (As announced by terf organizer founder and Lisa Vogel.) By the way,  TERF's are not cute little relations to a "Smurf" toy but bigoted Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminists.

Connie commented: A TERF war battle lost. I guess there's always Burning Man (but why no Burning Woman?).  Good point! Here is my rant on the subject.

Perhaps many of you have heard of the term "Male Privilege." (They think we had it so damn good growing up and existing in a world they knew nothing about.) TERF's are gender victims Somehow, I didn't see Lisa Vogel in the Army draft line with me.  Regardless of all of that - my point is, if we enjoyed all that male privilege, why would we forsake it all to change gender???? Come on Lisa, really?

I also wonder if trans men would be welcome Lisa?  I have seen my share of highly androgynous lesbians. Do they drop their drawers at the gate when they buy tickets? How about if my lesbian partner wanted to go? Would I have to use the side gate? Sure, some trans woman have managed to slip by the gender censors. But are these the trans girls with all the passing privilege in the world? 

Come on Lisa, the only reason I would even have tried to attend your precious festival is because you didn't want me there. So Connie, I would argue, there is no "Burning Woman" because it is a male privilege to get burnt as a "macho" sacrifice. According to Lisa, if both genders are allowed to go, the generics with their birthright can watch. Transgender women or men? We can't be burnt. That's privilege! 

Good riddance to your festival Lisa. As Connie said, another battle lost.

Cyrsti's Condo "OOOPPPS!"

Lovely crossdresser
Unidentified cross dresser Pinterest 
Dammit!!! Maybe if I hide out in the women's room for awhile, those guys in the bar I know out there will leave??

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Timing is Everything

This morning, I saw the publicity and the expectant battle of words for this years embattled Michigan Womyn's Festival.  Remember, this event is famous for it's continuing attempt to exclude transgender women This morning though, (before I could start my rant) I read the 40th Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival, to be held this August, will be the last, its founder announced today. 

From the
"The storied women-only event, first held in 1976, has been the subject of controversy in recent years because of its exclusion of transgender women, with many artists and organizations deciding to boycott. 
Founder and organizer Lisa Vogel (left) gave no reason for ending the fest, however, in a Facebook post announcing the decision."
Bluntly, another group of bigots are fading away. Hopefully not to replaced by more like the Loki Meetup Group (Lesbian) in the Cincinnati, Ohio area (who excluded me).
It's sad they are so narrow minded but if you read all of the Advocate story, you will see why change is coming-one way or another.

Cyrsti's Condo "From the Hart"

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The "Small Bang" Therory

The Trans Ohio Symposium released it's "key note speaker" list yesterday-or I should say-.speakers list.  The list had a nice balance of race black/white (2 each) and a heavy balance of youth and trans guys.

However, I felt left out but then again know why. This is my third year in a row, and trans women are few and far between. Plus, the ones who do attend have a tendency to be out on their own little islands and stand offish. Including me.

Every year I tell Liz (who attends) I am going to make sure I make an effort not to present as some sort of an unreachable bitch-translated-introduce myself.  It's tough. During my male days of yore in my macho family we were taught to wait for someone to come to us to speak. It's time to bury that hatchet too with my past.

Now, there are several other reasons the oldest presenter is approx 30. Primarily (I don't have the official numbers) the attendee's seem to be younger transgender males. Plus, the future of all the trans community lies in it's youth and preventing as many tragic suicides as possible.

Finally, why do I think so few transgender women attend? First of all, once we "succeed" in blending into society.. See Ya! Also a ton of us are still married to a spouse who is not "all in" with us being a cross dresser, let alone being transgender. I'm just guessing she won't be all in spending money checking out the direction her marriage may be headed.

The problem is, and the Trans Ohio Symposium is not the place to address it is, there is not much information being presented for cross dressers searching for their gender basis. You would need a whole different Symposium (maybe not unlike Fantasia Fair) with more resources around here to do it. Plus, let's not forget the difference in name and organizers, just as a start.

So, why do Liz and I go? There is a place of course for a niche provider like me and my little workshop is usually well attended. Usually, at least half are spouses. Finally, I always come away from the event with more knowledge than I thought I walked in with.

The organizers are just now getting final information out on the event -May 29-31st this year in Columbus, Ohio. Follow the link for more!

Cyrsti's Condo "Fave"

Kalindra ChanI just love this picture of MtF trans model Kalindra Chan:

Monday, April 20, 2015

Is That a Chip on Your Shoulder or a Fashion Statement?

Should we still be carrying a chip on our shoulder so completely now if we are transgender? Should we still love the "poor, poor pitiful us" label so completely? Do I? Do you? I began thinking about the idea this morning...

When I turned on my old computer this morning I saw an ABC promo ad on this weeks Bruce Jenner transgender "unveiling" with Diane Sawyer. Something called Bruce Jenner "The Story". Immediately I recoiled and thought two things. When is the last time Diane knocked on your door to interview the average trans woman or trans man and the deep seated feeling this just can't be good. 

However, maybe I am not being fair and on occasion I have been known to carry a fairly decent trans chip too. Because I know Jenner's past athletic accomplishments took an incredible effort and much of that effort may have come from attempting to cover gender dysphoria. I think, quit being a bitch and understand? Dammit I should! Shouldn't I??? Why the guilt?

Plus, I can't escape the fact that on at least one occasion when I outed myself in a group of generics-one said "Oh! She (me) is like Bruce Jenner." or my daughters friends have specifically asked my ideas. I guess after Friday I will know.

Am I more trans than Bruce just because I don't have the Kardasian publicity machine?  No and I will have to shift the chip on my shoulder! (Maybe)

Don't get me wrong-I have a HUGE problem with our basic American rights being denied in society and in our military. (That is NOT the "chip" I'm talking about.") Increasingly though, I am feeling being a trans whiner rather than a "doer" is a waste of my time. Maybe I can remove my chip and throw it? Will Bruce?

Cyrsti's Condo "What I?"

She just knew that "Womanless Pageant" excuse was going a bit too far! (And the excuse to wear her clothes!

makeover by the girlfriend
Unidentified cross dresser (Pinterest)

Sunday, April 19, 2015

I'm Impressed!

Ohio State University High Heel Shoe Bottle HolderConnie commented on The Ohio State University Spring football game: "This time, I'll have to predict a win for OSU. Football, if a religion, cannot be used to "fix" anyone's gender identity, though. In fact, statistically, about 200 of those attending the game today will be dealing with some gender identity issue. While they may be at "The Shoe" today, I will be at DSW shopping for shoes (sometimes a religion in itself). ;-)"

Nice job on the stats! I don't know if you figured in the 99,700 peeps in "The Shoe? (The Shoe by the way is Ohio State's Football Stadium and the game is actually a scrimmage game between members of the team.) 

By the way Connie, thanks for mentioning DSW Shoes-whose head quarters are in Columbus. Plus, you are right about religion fixing football or even gender dysphoria. Only the NFL can do that!

Cyrsti's Condo "Sunday Edition"

Page One.-The Week that Was-or Wasn't: Sad to say most of my week was literally consumed by the petty bickering I was doing with my long time acquaintance. Sometimes I am not the sharpest tack in the box and love an argument, so I did hang on to the "discussion" too long. Now I just delete his emails without comment. In the transgender world Laverne Cox is posing nude, another woman of color (generic) is playing a trans woman on a soap opera and two count downs began. David Letterman's final shows and the upcoming Bruce Jenner "Out with Diane Sawyer Show." Quickly, no matter how gorgeous Laverne Cox is and how much of a clown show Jenner turns out to be-I don't know what either really mean to me. Except the questions my 37 year old daughter get from her soccer Mom friends about what her transgender parent thinks. (Why does Laverne pose nude? 'Cause she can!)
laverne-coxPage Two .-The Way to a Woman's Heart is Through Her Purse? Wednesday night, Liz and I met a small group of generics to watch one of their husbands perform at a local venue. "Tagging along" this time was a new person and she was scared to death-and ended up sitting beside me. At no time did the word transgender enter our conversation but after initial polite introductions and "small talk" I could see the "look" in her eyes. Something just not be right in the order of the world as she knew it. On the other hand, my complete acceptance by the rest of the group probably led her to believe I would not bite and had my shots. Just a compliment or two about the top she was wearing and the purse she was carrying and it was "old home night." She was hoping I was going to come to the next get together so she had someone to talk to. Good Karma!
Page Three.- "A Cross Dresser's Wife" :  Seemingly these days I have one major event per month scheduled. The end of May brings my workshop at the Trans Ohio Symposium, or, should I say, my hour of shutting up and letting others talk. (Difficult for me.) Then, in the middle of June in many ways is a much more intimidating day for me. The date is my grand daughters 13th birthday. I came in male drag to my oldest grandson's party last winter and was roundly trashed by my daughter, therapist and partner for doing so. But, I can take a beating (and even learn)-and won't let it happen again. I know there are many in the extended family who know I am trans but have never seen me and will be curious. Maybe more peeps will come and my grand kid will get more gifts! However, of all the attendee's, I know my first wife (and mother of my daughter) will be peeing down her leg in anticipation. After all, she has not seen the real me since my ancient cross dressing days in the 1970's. FYI, both her and my second wife knew ahead of marrying me I cross dressed. But through most of my existence all of us struggled with the concept of being transgender.
Page 4.- The Back Page: That's it for this week's Sunday Edition and thanks for stopping by again and again! Have a good week, stay on the good side of "Momma Karma" and Hugzzzzz!

Ker Plunk! Another edition of your Sunday Edition has hit your virtual front porch! Around here in Southwestern Ohio, we are experiencing our usual bumpy Spring arrival weather.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Cyrsti's Condo "Pin Up"

Hell yeah

Look Who is NOT Coming to Dinner?

With all respect to the classic movie, my acquaintance over in Columbus (Ohio) did not fall for the invite for him and his new bride to come to dinner with my partner and I.  Not surprisingly he wanted to not expose that part of his life (including me) to her. That's all good, if he was consistent. Don't email me at least 25 times a week with essentially the same ideas. His life is stuck in muck-not a good spring look!

Intended or not, he provides me with a link to that part of my past. The only one. On the other hand, while I have not had to sever as many of my ties with friends and family as others, it is time to cut ties with him. I guarantee he will come slinking back.

Look, I really don't care if he didn't tell his new wife. Just don't be a hypocrite and continue to email me with a femme name. He needs to continue his religious purge.

Liz and I certainly can find any number of places to eat in Columbus. The biggest problem of all could be, his wife could be more diverse in her thinking than he is in his closet.

On the positive side and speaking of Columbus, Ohio-today is the annual The Ohio State University spring football game and as many as 90,000 fanatics could be in "The Shoe" for the game. Now that's religion!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spring Cleaning in the Closet?

Perhaps Connie's comment said it best when she wrote about my *** acquaintance causing all the ruckus around here, "Maybe there is a spring loose on the closet door!" There is. The latest message from him said he would have a "rebuttal" for my comments about him later. I told him wasn't interested-just go on with his life.

Ironically as I said, years and years ago I was the recipient of one of his major purges-make up, breast forms and all. From that point on he simply went from purging externally to purging on line.

The last thing I ever wanted to do here in Cyrsti's Condo was to give the impression I have forgotten or don't respect the closet. Unlike Connie's comment that it has been years since she has shopped in a thrift store-I still do.

It's become a real need for me because of my budget and then again a sport too. Just a couple Saturday's ago, I found three key wardrobe items from a well known plus size store for under ten dollars.Two with the original store tags still on them and I am proud to say I can wear now because of  my diet results. Unlike Connie though, I can't say every time I go. I see a potential cross dresser. However, over the years I have seen my share and why not? Thrift stores are wonderful places to have dressing room access, great prices and yes-rebuild after a purge.

Finally, lets not forget one of the "funnest" parts of being a girl in a climate with seasons is being able to dress yourself for it!

***FYI all-I an 99% sure he doesn't visit Cyrsti's Condo. On top of being envious, he is paranoid to the point of being afraid of secret "gremlins" infecting him from here. Instead of the stores "pandering" to cross dressers. (Plus-what would his new wife say?)

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Power Shopping?

Paula Goodwin also responded to one of the questions in a former Cyrsti's Condo post "Since You Asked."

"There do seem to be a number of stores, and service providers, perhaps more aimed at crossdressers, who charge some quite extortionate prices for what they sell as "specialty" and "confidential" items such as breast forms, large size shoes, and shapewear. Most of these items can be bought much cheaper on the high street or from mainstream suppliers much cheaper.

The last question I simply don't understand, in the UK anyone who represents a danger to themselves or others will get professional (medical) help, those who don't will have to wait interminably or pay for it."

Thanks Paula! I think his insistence on mentioning the stores which "pander" to the cross dressing community just means he is spending too much time looking and dreaming. Remember, this was the guy who purged one time and gave me half his "stash" from a storage unit he had hidden from his wife.

As far as professional/medical help in our VERY convoluted system goes-it is out there. But- in the great majority of cases insurance still won't cover it and most can't afford it. His deal was attacking the idea of therapy as a whole and it's effectiveness.

Finally, keep in mind, he will "almost" accept the idea of a true transgender person. On the other hand-transsexuals are in no way female and in essence all of us are cross dressers in overdrive. He made these determinations in the 80's when he went into the closet and is living there. 

More Background

I know I was a little vague on the background history from one of my recent posts which went into the questions I got from a long time acquaintance.

I'm going to pull excerpts on both comments then back track into info. The first comment comes from Connie:
 "Cyrsti, it seems as though this friend of yours has either been frustrated for a long time or is challenging you to give an explanation as to why cross dressers are different from trans people - or both (most likely). Perhaps this person has even undergone conversion therapy, but the last three questions certainly do have cynical undertones that could be based on shame and guilt." - and- 
"I would give answers to these six questions that would be similar to yours, but I'm much more intrigued by the motivation of your old friend in asking them. The bigger question, I think, can be drawn from between the lines - not necessarily from the lines being drawn."

Connie, frustration may be too simple a term. He carries with him to this day a deep resentment towards a transsexual woman we both knew during her transition (all the way to SRS) "Me thinks" one or both of them went to far and he still carries frustration. 

And there is the "tale of two therapies." About the same time, both of us went to probably the only gender therapist in Ohio at the time (1980's). For some reason, he came away thinking therapists were enablers basically only in it for the dollar. Ironically, my wife and I went and I came away with the advice my gender dysphoria was not going away and both of us would have to live with it if our relationship would survive. 

Our lives actually went separate ways for years before he made contact on Yahoo. During that time, he actually made contact with a cis man somewhere on line and corresponded with him as a generic for a year or so. At the least I tell him he does a great job of living by the "Hypocrite Code".  Finally, he got out of a long term relationship with a wife who recoiled about any idea of cross dressing and married another woman in about a month. Did he tell the "new wife"? Of course not. 

Another comment next.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Walk Away?

Years ago when I was first free to explore the real possibilities of transitioning, I remember quite vividly reading about one of the transsexuals "coming out of stealth" just to explain why she "got out." By getting out, I mean-she meant, out of the rat race just to live her life in her preferred gender. Commonly referred to as "stealth." - and why she was going back.

I remembered at the time-what a waste of experience and activism. Lately, I'm not so sure.

My daily Cyrsti's Condo blog has become a child at a time in my life when I don't need one. Certainly, I'm not getting rich by all of this, although money is NOT why I started all of this. I wanted to prove I could, tell my story for others and yes-transition.

As transitions go I suppose, mine has been very kind to me. I'm blessed to be able to live a feminine life far beyond my expectations. So far as a matter of fact, I think writing about them has become a chore for both of us. I know I'm not real glitzy and going to the store today in jeans, T shirt and boots wouldn't make for big fashion story-but it is who I am.

My passions burn bright for equal treatment and rights for all citizens of the transgender community but then again these days I feel I'm on the outside looking in because of my age. Plus, the hour or so I put into the blog everyday has the potential to take away time I could have to go to community trans support organizations. Here's an example of my frustration. Today the closeted cross dresser I mention here in the blog told me about the religious classes he was taking at the age of 65. Of course the pastor threw in how religion and God can be a cure for cross dressing. Really?

I also know humans don't live forever and I have a long way to study the religions I want to- such as Tibetian Buddhism, Hinduism and earth based Spiritual beliefs held by native tribes around the world and America. What's the line from "Smokey and the Bandit?" I have a long way to go and a short time to get there.

Recent discoveries of  totally accessing my true gender self has whetted my thirst for more understanding of my soul. I used to be a huge believer and practitioner of transcendental meditation. It has occurred to me now, the blocks I was experiencing could have been self induced gender blocks. And, all of that takes time.

So. as of yet-I don't know where I am going with all of this. All I do know is around the time I do my Trans Ohio workshop will be coming up at the end of May. Plus, Cyrsti's Condo will celebrate another year. In the meantime, we will have business as usual and see what happens!

Since You Asked

Recently I received this set of questions from a frustrated cross dressing closeted friend from the 80's.

 Dear Ms. Hart,
  • How many people who dress are trans?  
  • How many people who say they are trans actually know what they're talking about?  
  • How many bisexuals prefer a "trans" label to a "bi" or "gay" label?  
  • How many people who transition realize that they've evolved from male to transsexual and that "female" is truly out of reach?
  • How many individuals and businesses are making money pandering to these people?
  • How many people exhibiting suicidal tendencies are getting professional help as opposed to professional enabling?

 Wow!! if I knew these answers, I would be rich and somewhere else!
But of course like ass holes-I have assumptions like everyone else'
Here are some:
  • 1.-VERY few cross dressers are trans-the castle (where we used ti hang out) just seemed to have an over balance. I would say 10% at the MOST.
  • 2.-Most trans people do know what they are talking about-but in most cases say it in a terrible way. If you are truly trans-you just KNOW it.  If you are good enough to express it or write about, you are even in a smaller minority.
  • None-all the bi/gay/lesbian labels are sexual-not gender. A trans person though can express which sexuality they prefer. Such as I prefer women and identify as a trans lesbian.
  • As different as snowflakes-all perceptions are different. "Female and Male" are anatomical terms and have nothing to do with gender. Personally, I believe female is always out of reach-but "woman" isn't. Also I do believe there are still many transsexuals who believe they can still buy their way to being a female through surgery. HRT can "sync" a former male brain into the feminine world which felt right and being a woman is within reach. Remember a female is not a woman and a male is not a man.
  • Very, very few business's make money "pandering" to the transgender community-for several reasons. The biggest one is the high unemployment rate. Also so many are still in the closet and so many go stealth (as I am considering this is all so tedious) money is scarce. Also, please don't confuse the gay and lesbian venues who do make some money off of some fringe trans peeps or the sudden abundance of reality shows about us. In short, we are poor, invisible and unorganized. Don't worry about us being "pandered" to yet.
  • This is an incredibly misguided question. When you talk to your pastor-do you consider it "professional help?" Also, keep in mind professional help is too expensive and out of reach for the greatest majority of those who try and succeed at suicide. By using the term "enabler" you must still cling to some outmoded notion that this is a choice. If you have followed the Leelah Alcorn suicide at all, you would have your answer. If counseling enables you to save your own life-wouldn't you take it. What about if it was your own son?
  • There you Go!