Showing posts with label transgender woman. Show all posts
Showing posts with label transgender woman. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Queenly.Com

 I received this email from Jamie  Coker Robertson concerning information about Queenly.com.

" I would like to introduce you to Queenly.com, one of the most inclusive online marketplaces in the world for trans women (and all those who identify as women). Owned by two AAPI women, the popular re-sale formalwear app is a staunch advocate for diversity and inclusion for the trans community in every vertical, including inventory, marketing and social media. 


Queenly regularly hires Trans models for their advertising campaigns and provides the ideal platform for trans women and drag performers to find the formalwear that works for them. 

Trisha Bantique

"We know that a lot of trans women and drag performers have a hard time finding dresses/gowns for their size and body shape, and so they have to usually make their own clothing. There's nowhere that they can buy off the rack or brand new where it'll fit them perfectly...until now. Queenly stepped in to make it easier to buy from one another in a more convenient and efficient way.” - Trisha Bantigue, CEO and founder of Queenly. 

Queenly has an exciting upcoming Pride Month partnership with Slay Models, the premier management company representing transgender fashion talent. As one of the main sponsors of their televised Model Search Competition on June 18th in L.A, Queenly aims to be a part of positive change and awareness for the trans community. "

They went on to write : "Whether it’s for a wedding, cocktail party, pageant, or drag ball, Queenly.com has over 90,000 “pre-loved” dresses to choose from, by over 40 different designers. Not only can you buy your dresses from Queenly, you can also sell them back on the app, recouping your investment."

Sounds like a wonderful place to virtually visit if you are looking for a formal gown. They even feature a selection of wedding dresses for the eager transgender bride to be, 

Follow this link for more and thanks to Jamie for thinking of us.

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Still Melting

I am so over this ultra hot weather! Here in southern Ohio we have been stuck under this power dome of hot weather. As I have mentioned several times, we don't have an air conditioned house so the weather is so much worse. I am sick and tired of seeing a heat advisory on the television. 

By now you are thinking what does this have to do with being a transgender woman. Mainly the post has to do with the effects of hormone replacement therapy on a male body. Previously I wrote of a thermostat change which occurred when I seriously started on the hormonal route. I was cold all the time. 

The problem I have is how my age reacted with my new feminine hormones for change, Since I actually started down the serious HRT path when I was in my sixties, I felt my natural testosterone levels were already in decline. Making it easier for feminine changes to occur. 

Less is more it seemed as the changes started to come fast and furious. Before I knew it I was presenting as a highly androgynous person. Along with the natural changes such as breast growth, were the less noticeable but still as important changes. All of a sudden I could smell better and along with that it seemed my body chemistry was changing also. I didn't perspire as much was the main change. I wonder now if less perspiration hurts me now in this very hot and humid weather. One way or another you take the bad with the good.

Coming up this weekend is Cincinnati LGBTQ Pride and the weather is supposed to break for a couple days before we go back to the extreme heat again. We are still deciding if we are going to go downtown and party. Standing in the way could be my partner Liz's work hours and finances. We are still going to wait to see what we are going to do.

Until that time, I am going to continue to hope for no more rolling blackouts. At least now I have my fan to make life less miserable. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

While My Blog Gently Weeps

 As I was opening my email and Facebook accounts this morning I was shocked to see one of my favorite


Condo cover girls, Melonee Malone had passed away recently from a massive stroke in her sleep. 

Her wife Lisa wanted us all to remember Melonee by the words she repeated every morning. "I will be a better woman than I was the day before." Both her and Lisa helped to do just that by aiding novice transgender women in their native Wisconsin. 

Even though I never had a chance to meet Melonee or Lisa in person, they are the kind of good people I would have wanted to,

Rest in Woman Power! My best hopes for rapid healing powers go out to Lisa.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

Achieving a Transgender Goal

 Similar to other human beings, we transgender folk follow a long path to hopefully discovering our  true selves. 

Even though we face a difficult and often cruel journey to arrive where we are heading, others are not immune from going through similar yet different struggles. It is my belief that even though cis women and men are just born female or male they have the chance to hopefully grow in life to be quality women and men. I see the same struggle with transgender women and men as they grow into their authentic selves. 

Connie and I used to refer to them as "trans nazi's" back in the day. They were the ones who seemingly held the number of gender surgeries you had or didn't have against you. More than likely another version of "I am more Transgender than you" movement. How sad is it any of us have had to go through anything like it. 

Early Cross Dressing Picture
Jessie Hart Collection

My earliest remembrances go back to my first visits to "transvestites' mixers" in Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Out of all the different types of cross dressers in the room, the ones who perhaps influenced me the most were the ones I called the "A" Listers. The attendees who were impossibly feminine and attractive. Unfortunately, they were the biggest bitches in the crowd. I didn't want to act like them, I just wanted to look like them. With the help of practice and a timely makeover, I finally earned my right to go out with them and party after the mixer was over. 

Slowly but surely, I was achieving a transgender goal I didn't really know I had. Ironically, I never did fit into a niche group there either. I wasn't one of the "A" listers, nor was I a so called run of the mill  cross dresser. Finally, the term transgender came along to save me. I found my niche. 

Overall though, goals are difficult to achieve for many transgender women and men. We have huge hurdles to overcome when we come out to friends and family. Many times, those same friends and families don't understand they have to transition also. Rarely do we stay the same as we make the journey across the gender frontier. Hormone replacement therapy alone takes awhile to fully set in so transitions are far from complete when a trans person comes out. 

Then there are the gender surgeries. All the way from breast enlargement, to facial feminization, to gender realignment it's often a difficult and painful path to take. It takes a special friend or family member to understand and follow one through such a drastic journey.

Perhaps the most cruel goal of all is the conscious desire to forsake any gender privilege you may have built up over the years living as your non authentic self. Depending upon your age, you had potentially accrued the so called right and knowledge to live a certain way. I was to the point in my life when I had earned the hated "Sir" word. If I was deserving or not. 

I'm fortunate in that I have been able to achieve my transgender goals but I have had plenty of help along the way. I can't forget any of them.   

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Cover Girl

I have chosen to feature another photo from one of my favorite Facebook transgender woman acquaintances. This is Melonee Malone before her and wife Lisa went to an upscale country club party. Not to be outdone, Melonee decided tp go all out to impress.

I'm sure you will agree, she probably did not disappoint!


 

Thursday, April 28, 2022

"Endo" Day

 Every six months or so I need to "face the music" and visit my endocrinologist or "Endo" doc. Quite possibly it is the most important doctors appointment I have.? Because she  controls my hormone replacement therapy medications. 

From the Jessie
Hart Collection 

In my case, that means I have to make a trip to the vampires to have my blood checked at the Veterans Administration blood laboratory.  From that point forward it is up to her to judge my overall health and give me her blessing to continue on my meds. 

Needless to say, my hormone meds are near and dear to me because the meds have allowed me to become the transgender woman I am today. No pressure...right? I write quite a lot about the changes HRT have contributed to my growth as a transgender woman. Mainly when it came to the  feminization  of my exterior to match my inner self. 

Adding to the pressure of this visit is I needed to do a new test I had been putting off for nearly a year and/or two appointments. This time I had to provide a twenty four hour urine sample. So , not only do I not know what the test is for, I don't know how it will enter in to my HRT, The VA has an on line site where you can view test results I just don't know how to translate the results. I guess that much is her job. 

Many times I have the ability to conjure up irrational fears. Hopefully this is just another one of those. 

 

Monday, April 25, 2022

Monday Monday

 Another week has passed here in the Condo and it is time to face another Monday. 

What better way is there than to feature one of my favorite Facebook acquaintances who features a new photo nearly every Monday. I am  featuring again a transgender woman from Wisconsin Melonee Malone who along with her cis woman wife have what they call "Boy Toy" nights every Saturday. 

As I point out every time, Melonee has transitioned well and is fully "post op" meaning she has gone through the genital realignment surgery.

Hopefully her picture will make your Monday (and week)go a little bit better!


Monday, April 18, 2022

Why Not?

Years ago, as I had progressed to the point of no return as far as my transgender transition was concerned, I finally came to the conclusion...why not?

One night as I sat by myself at one of my favorite venues I frequented I finally decided to give up what was left of my remaining old male self and finish my dream of living a feminine life. By this point of my life what did I have to lose except a ton of male privilege , some earned, some not. By this time I was just over sixty years old and was fortunate enough to have lived an interesting and healthy life. The only drawback it seemed was the never ending desire to lead a feminine life. The whole process was very self destructive as many of you know. Through it all, my wife of twenty five years accepted me as a cross dresser but never approved of any idea of me taking the next step towards becoming a woman. Through it all we battled as I cheated with the "other woman" in my life who happened to be myself. Life became so difficult I became very destructive, all the way to attempting self harm or suicide . 

Little did I know at the time my life would change forever when she passed away suddenly from a massive heart attack. I found myself free to be me after the grief and suffering went away. I was given the rare chance to start my life over. A life I could only dream of for most if not all of my life. 

Needless to say, my decision was quick and predictable. I would start hormone replacement therapy and begin to feminize my exterior as soon as possible. Even though my doctor started me on a minimum dosage, very quickly I could tell the whole process was living up to everything I had hoped for and more. Before I knew it, my softening skin, budding breasts and longer hair were becoming  a definite give away to my rapidly changing gender. At the least I was a more androgynous person and faster than I ever dreamed possible, It was like my body was expecting the changes all along and just accepted them as a natural state of being. 

From the Jessie Hart
Collection

Also, my "why not" was easier to go through than many others crossing the gender border to play in the girls' sandbox. Probably, most important was my job. Back then, at my age, I was able to apply for and be able to live on an early Social Security check as I augmented it with selling a few collectibles on the side as I was careful to never go over the SS earnings limit. So I was able to scratch together a living and could retire from the prying eyes of a job which was certain to be hostile to me as I went through a MtF transition. In other words, destiny was swinging the doors wide open. My path was clear to achieving a life long dream of living a feminine life, full time as a transgender woman.

Of course the night I decided to finally live as my authentic self was not without a heaping portion of fear. It was then as it still is now on occasion the most exciting yet terrifying thing I have ever tried in my life. Over time though, the peaks have far exceeded the valleys as I have reached the age of seventy two. 

Probably the only regret I have is not transitioning from cross dresser to transgender woman earlier in my life. I should have asked the "why not" question much earlier.



  

Monday, April 4, 2022

Monday Uplift

 One of the very few transgender women I feature on a semi regular basis is Melonee Malone who I always write is no relation to regular contributor Connie Malone.

Most certainly, as you can see, Melonee needs plenty of uplift in her latest picture on Facebook.



Maybe this picture should be captioned "My eyes are up here!"


Friday, February 25, 2022

A Clean Transgender Slate?

 As I sat here this morning it was one the few days I didn't have any clear idea of what I was going to write about. It also helped that neither my problem knees or back weren't really bothering me for a change. I was ready to face the world...or the computer.

Photo Credit : Jessie Hart

Of course as it usually does, my mind started to work overtime and I started to wonder if any transgender person really does ever have a clean slate when it comes to their lives. It seems to me the baggage we carry from our youth and/or the continuing gender dysphoria we experience stays with us in various forms for our entire life. 

On occasion I find my writing to be a source of personal therapy and any response I receive between here and the Medium writers format is a form of icing on the cake,  Take for example the response I received from Lsjaffee on my recent post "Whose Fault was It?" Which made a reference to the pregnancy drug DES:

"The irony is that my mom took DES because she was conditioned in the 1950s to think that women at 30 couldn’t get pregnant. Like you, I wonder what impact it had on how I turned out. But in her case, she was homophobic and transphobic (the latter I discovered late in her life when dementia ate away what little brain cells she had yet). Yet I had sympathy for her when she, in a rare moment of clarity, described being groped on the subway when she was a teenager, or how her father mentally abused her mother. It was in a letter from my mother to my grandmother that I found 10 years ago cleaning out a drawer that revealed she took DES. I tucked that revelation away until 2 years ago when I tried making sense of why I am. It’s definitely clearer now."


That comment alone helped me to take another look back at my past and showed me one of my posts could be therapeutic to others. How all of that relates to a "clean transgender slate" remains to be seen. In fact, now my devious mind is stuck on being paranoiac about landing in a transphobic nursing home in my final years of life. Finally, I am working my way out of all the needless anxiety which it fosters.

Along the way also, a "transgender clean slate" has meant to me being able to ignore the people in my life who decided not to accept my transition to my authentic feminine self. My prime example is my brother and his in laws. After my wife passed away, who took it upon herself to cook for the entire family on Thanksgiving, my sister in law inherited the task. It just so happened it was just before the holiday when I decided to come out of the closet and tell what was left of my world I was a transgender woman. Before I came unannounced to the family gathering as my new authentic self, I decided to give my brother the benefit of the doubt to see if my invitation still stood.  It turned out I wasn't and we went our separate ways. Sad but true. 

Through it all, I knew I wouldn't be able to come through my transition unscathed but more or less I did.

It's the only reason I was able to reestablish myself in the world as the person I was always meant to be and set up a new :Clean Transgender Slate." 

Thursday, February 17, 2022

Playing in the Girls Sandbox

Very early in my transition into a feminine world. I discovered all was not all it seemed behind the scenes, Or what I called playing in the girls sandbox. In the beginning all seemed rosy. Sales clerks eager for my money met me with a smile. Plus, the servers where I went to eat and drink were happy to see me because I was nice and tipped well.

The deeper I went into how the sandbox really worked, I found flaws in the system. For example, it was re-enforced with me how women work in cliques while on the other hand, men form teams. Taking the example a step further, I found how I dressed could help me to fit in with a certain group of women.

Before I drifted into the Boho fashion craze, I found I could present convincingly as a professional woman. In fact, one of the first nights out I ever had was when I dressed in a professional woman's attire and went to an upscale bar frequented by other similarly dressed women. Looking back, I consider the night as the tipping point on my journey from being a cross dresser all the way towards being a novice transgender woman. Also I should point out I was terrified and sat in the parking lot for nearly a half hour before going in. I guess something was telling me this was going to be a key moment in my life.

Photo by Marcus Spiske
On Unsplash.

As it turned out, it was only a civilized introduction to the sandbox. As I drifted away from the upscale bar, I drifted into sports bars where I was often the only single woman at the bar watching sports or participating in games such as trivia. All went fairly well until I met up with several couples I began to be on a first name basis with. I learned the hard way to reject even the smallest amounts of acceptance from the men. When I did the smiles were replaced by claws or worse yet, knives in my back. Very quickly I learned where my place in the sandbox was.

As I did all of this, I was drinking copious amounts of beer which led me of course to needing to use the women's room. Or should I say, the litter box. The amount of alcohol I was drinking had the effect of being a double edged sword. On one hand it emboldened me to try to explore living as my authentic self but on the other hand, forced me into using restrooms I wasn't welcomed in. 

Of course I have written before about some of the more unpleasant experiences I had in the restroom. Overall, I was amazed how I could be seemingly accepted and socialized with until I had to use the litter box.

I was fortunate in  that I survived my early days in the girl's sandbox relatively unclawed. Perhaps it was becuase the feminine clique I landed in was unthreatening to most women. I didn't fit in with the cheerleading types. I tried my best just to be social and it must have worked.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

Another First

Not that I really do much of it, this won't be a post revolving around frilly heels and hose, Today kids we will be writing a short post about sports and this transgender woman.  Probably many of you know I used to play football instead of being a cheerleader like I always envied. However, I was never very good and took solace in the fact I really wanted to be a girl anyhow. But, to the topic at hand...

 Today is Super Bowl Sunday, the pinnacle of American football. 


Being a long suffering Cincinnati, Ohio sports fan, I have been through more years than not following teams that do nothing but lose. The only exception was The Ohio State Buckeyes. For years the standing joke was, the Buckeyes were the best professional team in Ohio. Better than the Bengals or the Cleveland Browns. 

This year times have changed and Bengal fans everywhere are super excited to be playing in only the third Super Bowl in the team's history.  

By now you are probably thinking so what? 

The biggest difference is I am now a fully out transgender woman.  So, I count this as my first Super Bowl. Even though the power of estrogen has leveled out my competitive edge, I am sure I still have enough edge to me to more than interested in the game.

However my authentic self still wants a Super Bowl trophy in Cincinnati! 

Who Dey think gonna beat dem Bengals!!!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

The Good Old Days

Source Cyrsti Hart

 I have touched on the subject of my ex wife (the first one who is still alive) bringing up the story from my past when I wrecked a car. The wreck could have easily killed both my brother and I. My problem with my first wife was when she referred to me as "he" could have seriously injured both of us. It was one of those moments I wish I was quick enough to say something like "Yes HE did it but now HE is gone."

In the grand scheme of things, the most I would have gotten out of her was a weak apology. As I began to think of it, the entire wreck was systematic of my life back in "The good old days." In other words, the good old days weren't so good. In addition to my gender dysphoria issues, I had the military draft hanging over my head for most of my high school days into college. 

During this time I was very self destructive. As soon as I became old enough to drive, it seemed trying to kill myself behind the wheel was the way to go. In fact I began to think I had a guardian angel riding with me when I was going to try something stupid.

Another problem with the good old days was I hadn't been diagnosed as bi-polar yet. Once I was years later when I was honorably discharged from the Army, suddenly many of my unexplained depressive episodes were explained. In fact, the first relevant gender therapist I visited told me there was nothing I could do about my desire to cross dress as a woman but there was help available for my destructive mood swings. Her advice went a long way into explaining why I struggled so hard with my life.

I wish I could say the overall self destructive experiences I had in the good old days were over. In fact, the more I tried to not risk going out in public as a woman, the more I did it. By this time I had divorced my first wife and married my second. Little did I know I would be setting off on a twenty five year odyssey  which would include many peaks and valleys. 

Through it all, I managed to go on a frenetic job journey which matched my urge to out run my demons. We managed to live in such diverse places as the NYC metro area all the way to an extremely rural area of Southeastern Ohio. My demons were relentless though and of course trying to outrun them was a waste of time and energy. 

The good old days had become a blur except for the strides I was making in my feminine presentation. Many of which put me in direct conflict with my wife. She knew of my cross dressing urges before we were married. She never agreed with any ideas of me being transgender and naturally was afraid of me being discovered going out. Nothing was good enough for me and I ended up going out as my authentic self as much as possible behind her back.

All the lying I did made the good old days less than pleasurable but still I had to do it. It's a shame such a time of discovery and learning in my life had to have such a unfortunate ending
.

So, I guess the good old days weren't so good after all. I'm just lucky I lived through them to experience my life now as a transgender woman. 

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

The Passing Lane

 


As far as I am concerned, the term "passing" as a woman has gone the route of so many terms describing cross dressers or transgender women such as transvestite. However for this post, passing fits due to the times I was referring to in my past. Also, while I am on the subject of terminology, the "You make a beautiful or at the least convincing woman" always used to set me off too. After all I didn't set out to "make" anything. Especially a woman. I was just trying to express my true self. 

As I was doing it, lessons were hard to learn and I have often written about the times I went home crying after being laughed at, or worse. Each lesson though taught me to survive and/or pass as my true feminine self. I could also refer to the process as aligning my interior with my exterior self. When I was able to balance the two was when I felt the most natural.

Perhaps you remember also the post I wrote about the little girl who taught me a huge lesson when she told her Mom "Look at the big mean woman." It turned out I had the hardest part down, she saw me as a woman but I lost the passing battle with the male scowl on my face. From then on, softening my facial muscles became a part of my makeup. 

Later on I met and became friends with another transgender woman who ended up giving me passing lane advice. Once a week we used to meet in a friendly tavern in a downtown Dayton, Ohio restoration district. Every now and then, a local lesbian group would meet there for a mixer. As luck would have it, I had a couple of friends in the group. Thanks to them or any number of reasons I was always accepted at the mixer. Even to the point of being asked to help one on my friends "pick up" another woman. Yes I was a "wing person" for the evening.

Normally, my trans friend didn't participate much in the mixer and I had the opinion she was more into men than I was. I loved any attention from a lesbian which came my way. Which it did on occasion. I discovered a kissing spot upstairs in the tavern by the rest rooms and was able to take advantage of a stray "smooch" on occasion. After one of them, my friend said I passed out of sheer will power.

I knew at the time, I didn't have her natural feminine looks but I did know I had the personality to overcome whatever I lacked. Ironically, as I learned to establish myself with lesbians, they gave me the confidence to move forward. Years later though I learned the hard way my acceptance wasn't permanent when my partner Liz (who identifies as a cis-lesbian) and I went to a Valentines Dance here in Cincinnati. When Liz went to get us some refreshments, a person went out of her way to make my life miserable with gender slurs. It took awhile for me to hitch up my big girl panties and get over it. But I did.

Overall I have been fortunate to have been able to straddle the gender frontier for as long as I could. Entering the "passing lane" wasn't easy for me since I had very few feminine characteristics. I got it done though. I made a path for my feminine self.  

Monday, November 22, 2021

Monday Inspiration

 This is especially directed to you cross dressers or novice transgender women struggling to find your way out of your closet.



Wednesday, November 17, 2021

When Life Gives You Lipstick

 


When life gives you lipstick, wear it!

Anyway you cut it, life is never fair for everyone. I'm biased but I think transgender women are dealt the most difficult hands in life. First of all, we have to do the difficult work of  figuring out who we are. Looking back I have written numerous times about all the mornings I woke up and immediately tried to figure out if I was a boy or a girl. What made matters worse was the fact this all happened before the internet and social media eras. Loneliness was extreme. I wasn't old enough to understand all that was happening to me and there was no one to explain the meaning of being gender fluid.

In the meantime I did the best I could to survive. I even tried to "come out" to a friend in high school (a guy) and was roundly rejected. Looking back, I had a total girl crush on another friend which I never let on to. It seemed life had dealt me a hand I couldn't win. 

Once I turned driving age though, I did get a small break.  On a couple occasions I was able to cross dress and sneak out of the house when my parents were away. I remember the trepidation I felt when I saw my reflection for the first time in a store's shopping center window. On the other hand, I felt a bigger sense of accomplishment. Other than those extremely rare occasions, high school wasa continuation of my gender frustration. The only relief I felt were a couple of school events I went to which featured a couple of very presentable boys in drag. Needless to say I was very jealous. 

The biggest setback I thought was coming was being drafted into the military. Along with the obvious reasons to dislike my upcoming service was the fact that women didn't have to worry at all about the military. Ironically this all turned out to be the time when life gave me a potential set back and I was able to turn it all around for the better. First of all I was given very little chance of  continuing my career as a radio disc jockey in the Army and I did just that in the American Forces Radio and Television Service. Then perhaps more importantly, I was able to finally come out of the closet toa few of my closest friends as a transvestite. Finally, the gift which kept on giving was meeting the woman who would turn out to be my first wife and birthed my beloved accepting daughter. 

Even with all those successes, I was still missing a huge gap in my life. Something was still wrong. Around this time life gave me the transgender term and the internet to research it. .All of a sudden I knew who I was. All those times I went to the transvestite mixers and didn't quite fit in made sense.

It all left me with the huge "what if" questions. Life had given me the answer to my gender issues but also left me the choices to settle my problems. Was I going to take the chances to give up all my male privileges and live full time as a transgender woman. After years of experimentation and soul searching the answer became clear and I took the gender plunge. 

At this point life gave me options. When my wife passed away, she was my biggest naysayer, so tragedy turned to a bittersweet triumph. Around this time also, the Veterans Administration began offering Hormone Replacement Therapy which I could take advantage of at a very low cost and I was old enough I could take advantage of early Social Security retirement and not have to worry about coming out at work.

It turned out life was repaying me for all the years of  turmoil and stress it put me through. 

Monday, November 15, 2021

Be Man Enough


 Actually the whole comment turned out to be "Why don't you be man enough to be a woman?"  The phrase was directed at me after another huge fight my second wife and I suffered. I don't remember now what the exact reason for the fight was but I assume I was coming down after cross dressing and was becoming a less than pleasant person. 

I was certainly stuck in a rut and rather than asking for her help, I made myself miserable. When I did that, I made her miserable also. To make matters worse I think, she knew about my cross dressing urges before we became married. Over the years she witnessed my slow slide to becoming my authentic self and living full time as a transgender woman.

It wasn't easy. Her Dad was an alcoholic and I was close to being one too. So she had to put up with that part of my toxic male personality. Why or how she stuck with me for all those years was a testament to our love and her strength. Indirectly my wanderlust due to trying to out run my gender desires led us to other adventures. For example, we moved to and lived in such diverse places as metro NYC all the way to a rustic house in the woods in rural Ohio above Marietta and the Ohio River. 

One of the pleasures of living just North of the city in New York was the Sundays we were able to take the train downtown and explore in a relatively mellow environment.  It was one of these trips along with another trigger moment which started the fight which led to the comment. 

First of all, I felt as if I presented well enough to take the trip on the train as my feminine self. Either she felt I didn't or wanted not to take the risk of being recognized as we left the house, I will never know because it never happened. 

Around that time too, I somehow (think of this being years ago) became a transvestite pen pal with another cross dresser. We used to send scented letters back and forth along with the occasional picture. Somehow I came up with a photo of me cross dressed standing over a stove cooking. Another of the problems my wife had with me though I was never a "domestic goddess" and didn't overdo my share of the household duties. But the biggest problem she had was when she found a letter in the mail before I could get to it. Looking back at it, this was probably the first time I really had snuck around behind her back with my transvestite urges.

Of course the letter set off a huge fight. The problem with me fighting someone with words only was I didn't know how to hold back the emotions and often went too far. Unfortunately this no holds barred way of dealing with an argument did no good at all. It was during one of these moments when she turned to me and said "Why don't you be man enough to be a woman." 

Naturally I was taken aback and ended up giving quite a bit of thought to what she said. 

The problem was I couldn't or wouldn't give up my male life. It was simply still too much a part of my existence. Plus, no matter how hard I had studied women my entire life, I didn't feel I was ready yet to cross the gender frontier. I still had so much to learn plus I didn't want to face the probability of giving up my financial life as well as family and friends. Little did I know, waiting probably caused me extra pain and suffering before I actually made the decision to transition in my early 60's. 

It's so sad my wife passed on years ago now, so she couldn't see how I manned up and used my second chance at life to become a woman.  

Sunday, November 14, 2021

Walls or Closets?


 It was long ago it was when I first took the big steps and leaped into the feminine world as a full time transgender woman. To refer to it as only coming out of a closet was an over simplification.  It seems to me rather than coming out of a closet, I climbed enough walls to build a house. 

Of course, a closet is often small and dark and a house gives a person increased freedom to move around. When you are transgender, the house is never enough . The quest to being a woman is much more complex.

Examples? One of the biggest one I write about often is learning to look another cis woman in the eye and communicate. I learned quickly the subtle nuances of eye contact, vocal intonation and factors such as passive aggression. Lessons came fast and furious as I built the foundation to my authentic self. 

Even though as I built the foundation it felt natural, it was also terrifying. I was tearing down another house which contained the remnants of my male self. Over the years, I had worked so hard to cross dress and present as a macho male. I was successful. I gained a small family, a good job and all the trappings of a middle aged man. I was awarded the honorary title of "sir" whether I deserved it or not. I guess another example of impostor syndrome.

Now, lets get back to building a gender house. Obviously each wall involved quite a bit of work. Just moving from walking around and window shopping in malls evolved into interaction with clerks. From the shopping trips came having the courage to stop for lunch and attempt to order food and beverage. Looking back at the process now, it seems to have progressed fairly quickly. So quickly I decided for the first time to shed my inner image of being a cross dresser all the way to attempting to go to an upscale restaurant/ bar and interact as a woman. I will tell you jumping the wall was one of the most terrifying things I have done in my life. 

As I continued to build and expand my house, there always seemed to be the "what's next" problem. I was hanging out at a couple lesbian bars about this time. One was extremely non inviting, the other the opposite. The only reason I can see now for building this room was a desperation to be accepted which I wasn't in the male dominated gay venues where I lived. Very early on, I closed the drag queen room in my gender house. What's next quickly became going to large cis gender venues to watch sports and drink beer.  With my career in similar venues, becoming accepted by the staff was fairly easy. Be nice and tip well was my way to getting my foot in the door. In one of my regular stops I was even invited and went on a girls night out with several of the servers. Even though I was scared to death, I ended up learning key lessons interacting with other women.

Finally I came to a point where my house was built as far as I could get it. I had provided myself a quality second existence which rivaled my cross dressing male life. The next major wall I had to escape involved the major step of starting HRT or hormone replacement therapy. The problem was my wife of twenty five years who I loved deeply was deeply against it. Her rational was she didn't sign up to be with another woman. 

Then, in a prime example of life changing on a dime, I was destined to see the doors of my walls swing wide open and I could make the lifestyle moves I needed to do to fully transition and live in a feminine world. 

More on it later.

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

The Path

Source: Cyrsti Hart

Over the years here in Cyrsti's Condo I have been amazed how many of the like minded transgender women I have encountered followed the same transition path as I did. Then again, I have ran into many trans women with totally different paths.

I have written a number of times how I used athletics to cover up the fact I really preferred being a girl. For example, being a football player kept the bullies away. Enough said. Perhaps what I haven't written so much about was my military service. Unlike so many others, I didn't voluntarily join the Army to make me a man, I was drafted during the Vietnam War. Guess what,  my time served still didn't help me to stay in my male closet. It only helped to reinforce what I already knew, I had a woman lurking to experience the world. In fact, the military provided me the opportunity to come out of my closet to three close friends for the first time in my life. When I told them I was a transvestite. 

Now we can fast forward through all the years of Halloween parties being the only opportunity to leave the closet and experience the world as my girl self. 

In the 1980's was the first time I could be aggressive and force my gender closet open and sample the world as a woman. As with any other tremendously difficult endeavor, my path had it's ups and downs. I was frustrated when I felt I was taking one step forward then two steps back. For example, when I felt I looked the feminine part, I would do something such as twist my ankle in heels. 

Finally I decided I needed a plan for my path.  Instead of meandering without a plan, I decided to begin a process which would lead to a transition...or not. Here is what worked for me. Plus, I need to point out, it was a different time to attempt to come out of the closet, so stick with me.

What I did was try my hand at so called "easy" places to pass in. I went to bookstores and shopped at women's clothing stores where all which really counted to the sales clerks was the color of my money. Emboldened by my success, then I expanded my trips to stopping and eating lunch. I still remember two of my favorite outfits. The first was a pastel green "business style" suit which I pared with pastel green hose and heels. The second was a black dressy jump suit with black pumps. Both outfits were worn with my long straight blond wig I loved so much. The end result was I blended well in the upscale malls I chose to go to. 

Even with all the so called success I was experiencing, there were downfalls also. Most came when I tried to do too much and ended up looking like a drag queen. I can't tell you how many times I went home in tears.  One day I even learned my lesson from one young girl I estimated to be four or five in a women's clothing store. As I turned the corner through another rack of clothes, we startled each other and she shouted to her Mom  "Look at the big woman!" I quickly thought  at least she saw me as a woman. But there was more. The girl went on to say "A big mean woman." Lesson learned. Wipe that male scowl off my face.

I tried also to challenge myself to accomplish different goals as I experimented surviving in a feminine world. 

It turned out my path would take several different branches before I arrived where I am today. Living full time as a transgender world with a successful relationship and an accepting daughter. More on it later. 

Friday, November 5, 2021