Recently, "passing" seemed to be a term which may be finding it's way out of our main vocabulary as transgender folk or cross dressers. Then again, maybe not. These days, if you can afford it, or your health allows it, you now have several different avenues to achieve passing privilege. There is surgery including facial feminization, breast augmentation all the way to genital realignment available for those who can afford it or have access to good insurance. Plus, let's not forget electrolysis to get rid of those pesky facial beards. It seems to me, after you go through all of that, you damn well better "pass".
Personally, I feel hormone replacement therapy has helped me to present favorably in a feminine world. But that is just me.
Sadly, though, just passing doesn't bring happiness to many. A transgender friend of mine years ago once told me I passed on sheer willpower. Which I took to mean if someone had a problem with me, they could go to hell. While that was true in many instances, I still suffered the same paranoia other novice cross dressers or trans women felt as they began their journey into the feminine world. I could fill several blog posts alone with my adventures waiting for a stall in women's bathrooms.
During my endless searches for quality posts to share with you, I found this one about a transgender woman in the UK who ran into problems just trying to try clothes on in a store. It;s called "Joni's Story" and you can find it here. Joni is below. A brief synopsis of the lengthy post looks into how Joni was rejected from a women's fitting room and how the episode led her to an unwanted public life and a search to fit in with the butch lesbian culture.
The end result of passing of course is how you feel about yourself. Sadly, no matter how much work some people have done on themselves, they still have difficulty finding a gender piece within.