I Failed my Gender Assignment

Vintage Edition of
Transvestia Magazine

 My initial gender assignment was very simple. I was born a boy, now be one. The problem quickly became I was failing the assignment and I just didn't want to be the gender which was assigned to me. 

Instead of following all of the basic rules I was given about being male, sooner more than later I began to realize something was wrong and essentially I had no choice but to follow the rules. As they were presented to me. My parents were members of the "greatest generation" who survived a great economic depression and a world war.  They were well versed in taking what was presented to them and making the best of it. The same was expected from me. I had no way out when it came to my gender issues. I was alone with my problems. 

In response I did the best I could. I participated in sports and did my best to present myself as a so called "normal" boy. While I was doing it, I also was doing my best to use my limited funds to accumulate a small collection of makeup and feminine clothes which freed me up from helping myself to my Mom's belongings. Of course at the time I was outgrowing my Mom in all the size categories, so it was good to finally go out on my own when I could. I guess you could say, this was the first time I actually passed my gender assignment, in my chosen dream world of being feminine. 

At the same time, I learned the male so called attributes of being emotionally distant and keeping my feelings bottled up. I would carry those with me until I was able to more completely transition my gender.  I was able to not fail this part of my gender exam. In many ways, in order to receive a pass or fail grade in either gender, I needed to wait for the world to catch up to me. Since I was a part of the pre-internet generation, information of any kind was very limited. In fact, I was completely isolated in my closet until I learned of "Virginia Prince" and her "Transvestia" publication. I was so relieved when I found I wasn't alone in the world and there were other so called transvestites in the world and some even met for mixers in cities close enough for me to attend. 

Once I did attend, my path to a different gender assignment became clearer. I was able to interact with others dealing with the same gender issues I was dealing with  and come up with a new plan for my life. It was about this time the transgender word became popular and I strongly believed it fit me. It was becoming increasingly evident I needed to take another gender exam. I was failing my initial male assignment and wanted so badly to attempt taking the new exciting feminine assignment or exam. Before I was able to, it turned out I had a lot more studying to do. Being a woman was a lot more than just looking like one. I can compare the process to higher education. Just being able to blend and mix in with the public as a transgender woman was similar to having an undergraduate degree. Then being able to communicate with other women one on one was the equivalent to obtaining a masters degree and so on.

Finally I accepted the fact I had failed my male assignment completely. No matter how hard I tried to succeed as a man, the whole process seemed to be an empty pursuit. Even though I was relatively successful in obtaining male privilege, I found I didn't want it. On the other hand, attempting to go as far as I could with a feminine gender assignment proved to be the answer to all my gender issues. Why? Primarily because the whole process felt so natural to me.