Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Is Seeing Believing?

Image from Unsplash

 Many cross dressers or novice transgender women and trans men spend a majority of their time living in their mirror. Many because they don't feel secure in totally leaving their gender closets and checking out the world. I know I spent years over respecting whatever the mirror was telling me. I would think I looked extremely good, then immediately get laughed at when I gathered the courage to go out the door. I learned the hard way the mirror was lying to me. 

Once I did learn looking good in the mirror wasn't my primary goal, my life changed. Instead of the mirror the public became my focus in judging how successful my feminine presentation was becoming or, how far I still needed to go to be successful in my gender dreams. Once I started to begin to communicate one on one with other women, I began to see in their eyes and actions how I was doing. The whole experience of stepping out of the mirror and into the world was at once exciting and terrifying. But everytime I felt as if I failed, I picked myself back up and decided to try, try again. 

Along the journey also, I learned there were so many different kinds of women. Some were attractive and had their own sort of extra special passing privilege and others needed to work harder on their hidden strengths to get by. I finally concluded being the most attractive woman in the room was not a reachable goal for me but perhaps being the most authentic one could be. By setting a more realistic idea of how I was presenting helped me to survive in the world.

I wonder now with all the anti-transgender feedback going on in the country, how it will effect the segment of cis-women who do not possess passing privilege. What  will happen when other people begin to question their restroom usage?   Will the transgender community gain more allies by default? It will be interesting to see what a cis-woman thinks when she is faced with the same discrimination trans girls grew up with. 

If by chance you were a "natural" and your feminine transition was relatively easy, perhaps your life in the mirror was too. For the rest of us the learning curve was so steep, hanging on was often the main problem. The mirror was all we had to get by since we didn't have a real peer group to rely on. I have included the infamous "faux" teenaged dressing years in this thought. Sadly, most of us were far beyond our younger years when we first escaped the closet and tried out a new world.  

Seeing is believing for me came when I became confident I could negotiate the world as my authentic feminine soul had wanted to do for so many years. Mostly pursuing my goals as a very serious cross dresser. It took me many years to realize the truth I wasn't cross dressing as a woman at all. In reality, I was cross dressing as a man and the mirror never told me.

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