When I was first beginning to open my cross dressing closet and see what the world had to offer, one of the main questions I was asked was when did I know I was transgender. Overall it seemed like a simple question that wasn't.
|Photo courtesy Jessie Hart|
First of all, the basic answer to the transgender question is I have been trans since birth. In fact though there are so many layers to this question. In order to answer it, I would have to attempt to explain the differences in being a cross dresser versus being transgender. To me, I spent the majority of my life cross dressing. Mostly as a man which totally confused most who bothered to care enough to inquire into my gender issues. It was difficult to explain why I was so sure I was never really a man, I was just going through the motions. Even though I attempted to balance all my gender issues for over fifty years, I became very adept at fooling the world. Sadly I was mainly only fooling myself.
For some reason, in my mind something snapped and I decided when it was time to move on from being a cross dresser. To me, the major difference was doing my best to look like a woman versus exploring the world to see if I could follow my dream and live full time.
As I went down this gender path, it became increasingly evident I could live full time as a transgender woman, Why? Because I sought out and found a small group of women friends who accepted me for who I was. Through the entire process, deep down I felt so natural. I have written a number of times of how a huge weight was lifted from my shoulders.
These days, I don't get asked questions concerning my gender much to not at all. I think it is because I have become so comfortable as my authentic self. I don't have anything to prove to anyone and if they don't accept me, so be it. I'm also fortunate to nearly always having my partner Liz by my side. In ways she doesn't understand she runs interference if I happen to encounter anyone negatively questioning my gender,
As you can tell, I don't have any easy answers for anyone who wants to positively question my gender journey. It is confusing enough to try to explain my idea of why a cross dresser and a transgender person differ. In fact, there were many times when I started what I referred to as my second transition to a trans woman, I was wondering what I was doing. I had so much to lose such as family, friends and jobs. What kept me going through this difficult time was the transgender journey I was going through felt so natural. That alone kept me going.
So if you are thinking of transitioning and have major questions to answer, my only advice is to listen to your inner self. It will tell you if you are transgender to the core.