Transgender vs. Crossdressing: A Response

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I follow a number of blogs by other trans people, it helps to read the thoughts of others who are in different places in becoming there true selves. Of course, as with anything so personal, there are things said which I understand and some I do not, there are opinions spoken I agree with or not, but in all things, it makes me think.

Ali Finds Herself is one such blog. She is thoughtful, insightful, and often funny and I find her posts to be interesting and often thought provoking. She recently wrote a post called Transgender vs. Crossdresser which I have been thinking about ever since I first read it a few days ago. I’m not going to recap the whole thing, you really should read it for yourself, but I will paste the last paragraph here because it so important to what I want to say;

“The answer I gave Nancy was this: “I think the line between crossdressing and transgender is when it stops being an event and just starts being normal.” And if I’m being honest with myself, I’m just not there yet. And cue the depressed sigh …”


I was bothered quite deeply by this post. It is thoughtful and thought provoking and in many ways spoke to my own struggles in defining myself… it carried the ring of truth on several levels, yet there was something about it and Ali’s conclusion which bothered me for another reason. 

Transitioning is a multifaceted aspect of being Transgender, yet it alone cannot define what it is to be Transgender. It goes beyond Gender Expression, (though it is part of it). It is not just a physical but mental as well. It must, and does include all of the ways a person changes in how they see themselves and the world about them.

Being Transgender is as shallow as your skin and as deep as your heart. 

In many ways I understand the confusion and doubts created when you cannot be yourself full time, when you must parcel out yourself in different packages for different occasions. Just as Ali does, I must maintain a male presence at work and for my children. I must think about everything I do and how it is being seen by those around me and sometimes it gets to be too much. Just as she wishes to be Ali all the time, I too wish I could let the world see Kira all the time, yet I know this just isn’t workable at the moment. The difference between us is how we view ourselves irrespective of outer appearance.

I am Kira full time now. Maybe not in how I walk down the street, but where it real matters in my day to day life… Inside. There isn’t a “him mode” and a “Kira mode”… there is only me behind my eyes. In my thoughts and dreams, in my emotions and opinions, in every way which truly matters to me as a person, I am Kira.

Don’t get me wrong, I would love to be seen as I truly am all of the time, but you know what? In the end it is the same; the world will only ever see the outside, not what’s inside. Not what makes me a human being and not just a body taking up space.

I guess what bothered me so deeply about what I read was the impression I require an external measure of who and what I am… That by making a big deal out of getting dressed up, putting on makeup and a wig; by seeing doing so as a personal adventure to be savored and enjoyed, I am then making a production out of it, turning what should be a normal, everyday event, not requiring any serious thought, into something separate and special, that I am in someway not being true to the “Transgender Ideal.” 

I simply cannot agree with this. Not for myself. Maybe getting “fancied up” is something special for when I have the time and energy, but I am at all times Kira. 

To me, this is what separates me from Crossdressers, they put on a persona. An almost separate identity from themselves, becoming something else while presenting as the opposite gender, yet inside, in their heart of hearts, they are the same person in a different costume. 

For them it as much about the presentation as anything. For myself it is only a outward expression of my inner truth. I do not “become” Kira; I am Kira, and this is just one of the ways I express myself.

Work In Progress Update



I am continuing to work on “Rayou”, adding bits and pieces as they come. I have the names of most of the major characters, various locations where the story will take place, and I am combing through Google Images looking for more inspiration. 

I have written several small bits of scenes to be fleshed out later, but I also have two that, while no where near finished, I feel are far enough along to give some hint of the style of the story. As I said in the first post though, one I am not comfortable sharing as I know it might be a trigger for people… maybe after more work I will share that, but I do have something I can put out there for you to read and comment on.

I am working helter skelter, writing out this and that as the scenes come to mind with no preconceived plans on where they fit into the story, I am naming each one separately. They are named to give a quick, simple way to remember the basic idea of what they are about.

I have found, for me, letting my mind jump around like this is working the best. When I try and force myself to work rigidly from point A to point B I loose focus and thus the thread of thought I am following. Going about things in a free form type of way allows the freedom to go with whatever comes to mind while following the over all theme I am aiming for.

So with no further ado, here is the scene named “Mirror”.


Erin sat on the bed, looking around the room, with its blue walls and white ceiling. The pictures of airplanes and automobiles, pictures she had drawn, not because she liked planes or cars but because she loved the precision they represented. The stark lines and graceful curves.

Then there was the furniture, the bed itself, small but functional, with its bookshelf headboard where she kept her favorite books; The Hunger Games, The Book Thief, A Wrinkle In Time, and others. There was also her memory box; a small thing made of cardboard printed to look like wood. It contained a few small items she knew her parents would expect, a baseball card, her “favorite” Hot Wheels car, a key she had found at the park. Things that really meant nothing to her but kept her true secrets safe.

From there her eyes swept to the dresser. An oversized monstrosity that hunched against the wall and seemed to glower at her. Her parents had found it at an estate sale and refinished it for her room. She hated it. She hated the masculine lines, all square and hard. She hated the color, a gloss black her Father told her made it look Japanese, but really made it look like a coffin. Most of all she hated the huge mirror that towered upward until it seemed to touch the ceiling. The mirror that held within it her greatest fears. In that wall of glass she could see what the world saw. A truth she could not deny even though it was all a lie. Looking at it, it was all she could do not to smash it with her fists, screaming curses at the gods or fate or whatever it was that had made her the way she was. That had, with cruel indifference, ensured her a life not of happiness, but of damnation. 


No Turning Back Now

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Well, things took another step forward today. I was contacted by the owner of the therapy group that I hope to get into. She was very understanding and agreed that I should at least do a consult. She even mentioned a support group that she thinks I might be able to join and she is going to check for me. I have some things that need to be checked before I can schedule an  appointment, so I’m waiting to hear back… hope I have some news soon.

Again, I have to say that the further things move along, the more nervous I get. This is something i never thought I would actually do…. at this point I have the shakes so bad I have to keep getting up because I can’t hold the mouse or type well enough to make complete sentences.

I have to say, speaking to another person about this was nerve racking. Although I have written about this all through this blog, it is such a different experience to speak the words out loud. To tell someone I have never met this secret. Don’t get me wrong, the person I spoke to was very kind and understanding and didn’t seem bothered in the least. She also recommended that I see one of the female therapists without being asked. I thought that was very nice. The thought of trying to talk to a man about this wasn’t something I could ever consider.

The funny thing is, despite everything, I feel rather relieved. As I said, things seem to be moving forward. Such a nice change from the up and down way of things as I’ve tried to work though this pretty much alone. I guess that in the end trying to deal with all my other issues on top of this has just been more than I can handle. That I have managed to deal with my episodes of depression, even when they got to a dangerous point, is a miracle. Though maybe, just maybe, had I been seeing someone for that alone I might have avoided the truth about myself. I don’t know if I could have admitted any of this to myself, let alone anyone else, (even a therapist), is a question I will never be able to answer. The fact is that my repressing this likely caused or at least aggravated my depression, even knowing that, I don’t know if I could have told, especially if I was seeing a male therapist. 

No matter what, there is really no turning back now… though to be honest, I think I passed that point the moment I let myself admit the truth of who I am…

Talking About Myself

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Has anyone else tried to look back at who they were before they came out? I have just to get a sense of where I was compared to where I am now, and you know what? I can’t do it.

I have a boatload of memories of course, but as I get closer to the night I broke down, they get pretty fuzzy until they become an indecipherable blur. That isn’t what I’m really talking about though. I mean emotionally. 

I tried to step back and look at what I was feeling in those last days and weeks, even months and I find that there is a blank there. I simply cannot connect with those emotions. It’s like who I am now is so far removed from that other person that we simply cannot connect at all.

I don’t understand what he was feeling, why he was feeling that way, or what his thought process was. Again, I have some of the memories but it’s like years of my life have all but vanished into a smear where everything is jumbled and disconnected.

<Sigh> I know I’m not making much sense here, it is such a strange feeling that it hard to describe. It’s like watching a movie for the hundredth time, you know the lines, you remember the scenes, and your pretty sure you remember the actors, but there is no real connection at all. No emotion, everything seems strangely flat and well. poorly written. Whats worse is that you know your the writer, the director, and the actor and still your left wondering what’s happening and what were you thinking when you wrote this mess?

Really, did that help explain things at all? I hope so…

I know that in the weeks following my life and mind were a jumbled mess that was racing along at a thousand miles an hour and i can at least go back and read those old posts and gain some understanding of what I was doing, and why, but from before? It’s like trying to understand an alien life form.

And I’m talking about myself here…

I Hate Scrambled Eggs

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I took a step forward today.

I finally contacted the therapy group here in town to inquire about their services; I’m waiting to hear back from them to see if they provide the service I need.

I won’t kid you, I’m scared to death. I have never talked to a complete stranger about what’s going on with my gender issues and the very idea of it fils me with dread. I know that these feelings are silly, that I am seeking to talk to a professional. That doesn’t stop something deep inside from insisting that I am making a terrible mistake.

Maybe it is the fact that I have had to hide for so long, keeping the truth of who I know myself to be safe from view. Maybe it was knowing that letting anyone see the true me would lead to nothing but pain.

Whatever the reason, I find that I am getting almost physically ill at the very thought. 

One thing I wasn’t expecting was in filling out the contact form I had to put down my name. I started to put down “Kira” without thinking about it. I had to backtrack and use my male name. I was afraid that they would think I was trying to prank them if I didn’t. What surprised me was how ambivalent I was about writing that name. It is a name I have to use every day, and often do so without too much thought, but that has changed.

This is what I was going to write about today, before I took the plunge and started the process I hope will lead to me talking to a therapist, that fact that when I woke up this morning it hit me that I can’t clearly remember the last time I thought of myself in terms of “his” name. I know it was some time last week, but I can’t recall the reason it happened or what day it was. I have been thinking only in terms of my real name. Thinking in terms of who I am now, not who I was. I am thinking in terms of the real me, not the facade I have been wearing.

In some ways this scares me a bit, the loss of that comfort zone I worked so hard to build and maintain, but that isn’t who I really am and I cannot continue with the lies any more. It is sort of disturbing and confusing because in my public life I have maintain that other persona. 

I know that now I am going to have to watch myself but for different reason from before. 

It makes me feel almost like I’m now living in a parallel universe where every thing is switched. Where before I had to watch and make sure I kept my female side hidden, now I have to watch and make sure I maintain a visible male side. 

It may seem like the same thing, but it isn’t. The focus is different. The thought process is different. The concerns are different.

I don’t know, this is really hard to explain in a way that makes any sense, even to me.

Honestly, my brains feel like scrambled eggs…. and I hate scrambled eggs…




From the very beginning of this crazy ride I’m on, I have struggled to understand myself, who I am, who I hope to be. I have done this within a self constrained framework. What some are wondering is why? Why don’t I just let things happen as they may. Why do I insist on moving forward at such a pace, keeping myself hidden behind my male facade, why don’t I allow myself to be completely free?

There are a number of reasons for this, and yes, they are are my reasons, imposed on myself. It is one of the things that is the hardest, this deliberate pacing of how I move forward. It is one of the things that frustrates me the most, one of the things that more than once has made me grind my teeth and want to scream at the walls. 


I wouldn’t do anything differently, no matter what I might think or say.


All my life family has meant something special to me. It might be the fact that I never had what could be called a normal family life growing up, it might be that I vowed that I would never do to my own children what was done to me, it might be that I simply have this ideal of how parents should sacrifice anything for those they help bring into the world.

Should I as a parent still be allowed to be happy? Yes, as long as that happiness does not bring harm to my children. And I do have times of happiness. I have three great kids, who while they sometimes make me question my sanity, I would never give up.

Besides the kids of course, there is my wife. She has be incredible through all of this. Honestly, I don’t know how she put up with me even before I came out. 

In all of my decisions, in everything I do, I take her into consideration. How much can she handle in regards to my needing to express myself? How much does my thoughts and feelings impact her?

For me, those around me are more important than I am. None of them asked to be drawn into this, nor did I really, but that they are here, dealing with this too, is because of me.

I would do anything for them,

Including again becoming “Him” if that is what was required of me.


And what of me?

Sorry Girl



Who am I that anyone should care?

I am someone who was born wearing the wrong skin. I am someone who dreams of being what she can never be, not on the way I would wish.

I don’t have very many memories of my youngest years, they become clearer starting at age six, but it wasn’t until I was ten that I realized why I was different from the other boys.

When I first came out, indeed when I started this blog, my strongest memory was of dressing in my mothers clothes when I was ten. Because of that I at first thought I was a cross dresser. I have come to understand that I am much more than that. 

Over time I have drawn up more and more memories. I have remembered more and more dreams, thoughts and emotions.

From that very first time putting on women’s clothing, I knew that no matter what my body might look like, I was a girl.

That didn’t make sense of course and caused me a great deal of confusion and more than a little fear.

I was already in an abusive situation and to be sure, this was going to only make things worse. That confusion and fear led me to repress my feelings, my thoughts, my emotions, everything. I went into a full shut down and just tried to be the boy everyone thought I was, that my body told me I should be.

That didn’t stop the dreams. It didn’t stop the fantasies. It didn’t stop the thoughts that forced they’re way through.

It didn’t take away the knowledge that I was female.

Over time the stress of keeping this secret built to the point where I either came close to attempting suicide or making an actual attempt.  I was miserable. I hated myself, the world and everything in it.

The night I finally broke it was a close thing, I had to either come out as who I really was or I would have killed myself. I have no doubt about that. 


There would be no more attempts at death, no more attempts at life.

It had finally become a matter of life or death and I chose life.


Everything that happened since is in this blog.

Strange Days



This has been such a strange day, not bad as these days go, but not what I expected.

For one, I find that I am beginning to have better conversations with one of my female coworkers, at times it almost seems like we’re just two girls talking. Of course I have no idea how she sees things, but that’s just how I feel about it.

Also, talking with A seems to be feeling the same way more and more, and I actually know this is the way she views it too because she has told me so. I find this rather satisfying on a number of levels, but I remain cautious that I might be reading too much into things. I guess only time will tell.

Another thing is that I although I seem to catch myself doing one of those, “that wasn’t smart (insert male name here)”, I am doing so less and I don’t berate myself when it happens. After all, that was the name I thought of myself as for much longer time than I have as Kira. It’s okay to slip up from time to time, I am human after all…

I still feel like I’m not quite back in gear, there are hours on end when I just seem to be idling along, but I am starting to view them as a rest period before all hell breaks loose again.

When will that happen? Well the time when I can at least come out about this to a therapist, in an effort to get a referral, is getting closer and closer, less than two weeks…

I guess most of the time I’m trying to not even think about it. 

The very thought of telling someone else makes my queasy. I know this is something I have to do, something that I need to do. I simply cannot fool myself into thinking that I can handle all this by myself. If there was any way I could, I would, but I have to be honest with myself and admit that this is simply too big, too complicated, and too mentally difficult. I need someone who can help me get this mess straightened out.

Doesn’t keep me from wanting to throw up though….






I have reached what is proving to be the most difficult time I have had up to this point. 

On one hand I find that I am struggling to understand what I should do now. I feel like I’m stuck in neutral, going nowhere. On the other I’m trying to understand where I should be going when and if I manage to get moving again.

At this point, I really don’t have that feeling of constant conflict that I had in the beginning. Really it has become a matter of working through my emotions, though there have been plenty of times of confusion and the occasional times when I have found my self falling back into “boy mode” and getting angry with myself.

Over all I think I am confused of the matter of what “Transition” means for me. I know that for so many it means seeking to change physically and in that case, they have obvious points of reference by which they can judge where they are at. It becomes much more difficult when the changes I’m seeking are mental. 

I have already experienced a hugh shift in the way I think about myself. The name I refer to myself, the pronouns I use in my internal dialog, and yes, the way I am trying to see myself in the mirror, (though that is very difficult). 

What I don’t understand is what other changes I should be aiming for. This is uncharted territory for me and though I have been doing a lot of looking online, no one has really talked about how their thinking changed and I haven’t found an online resource that addresses this. Maybe I’m just missing something.


Having said all that, one thing has changed, something that I know has been somewhere in the back of my mind for awhile…


In this I mean being able to finally forgive myself. To forgive myself from both sides of this whole thing.

To forgive the “boy” that I was. To forgive him for the choices he made when there weren’t any choices that he could make. He was there in the forefront for most of my life, taking the brunt of what the world dished out. He did the best he could and for that I am thankful.

I had to forgive him for keeping me in a box, locked and hidden from sight. Why it was done doesn’t matter anymore, I understand that he was doing what he thought was best when he didn’t know what else to do.

I also had to forgive her, that girl inside, who I am now in so many ways. I know that she could no longer remain in that box, that she couldn’t sit quietly any longer.

Now is her time.

I know that in coming out she has turned my life inside out, caused pain and confusion. That wasn’t her fault, it wasn’t her intention. It was just the way things had to happen.

In this understanding I know this. She has forgiven him, just as he has forgiven her.


I don’t want this to become too confusing. I have been and indeed am, both of these. They are me and I am them. In this I have to make peace with “him” who is my past just as I have had to make peace with “her” who is my present and my future.  

I cannot think of moving forward as long as I have regrets from my past, what happened, happened and I cannot change that, nor really should I want to. It is that past which brought me to where I am now.

I also cannot move forward as long as I look at where I am at this moment and blame “her” for what my life has become. She has always been there and I cannot deny her existence any more than I can deny the need to breath.

I don’t want to deny anything anymore, not to myself I don’t. It isn’t fair to myself to try and act like half of myself doesn’t exist. In fact, i couldn’t do so even if I wished.

And so I must forgive myself. 

And I do.

I want nothing more than to be at peace with myself. That is what forgiveness will give me.

Where will I go from here? As I said in the beginning, I don’t know. 

I just hope this is a step in the right direction.







Knowledge, understanding, acceptance, forgiveness.

Are these the steps to finally coming to peace with yourself? Coming to peace with your thoughts, memories, emotions?

I find myself wondering what it means to accept myself. 

This is something i am told that I need to do.

“You have to accept the truth about yourself.”

What “truth” is that? 

How do I know when I have achieved it?

In figuring out what questions I think I need to answer to figure this out I have come up with the following information that I cannot dispute;

I have physical, phycological, and emotional scars. I know where some came from, others I do not, but they are there.

I have lived with depression and suicidal thoughts from at least the age of ten.

I have have either cross dressed or thought/dreamed/fantasied about doing so since the age of ten or eleven.

I have thought of being a girl/woman since about the same age.

I have on more than a few occasions wished/dreamed/begged to wake up and be a real girl/woman.

I have been a girl/woman as my dream self.

I have wanted desperately to be included in the groups of women I have found myself around, I have wanted to be part of the conversation, part of the unspoken sisterhood that they enjoy.

I know that if I could take a pill, make a wish, be part of an experiment, that would allow me to change genders, I would do so without hesitation even if it might kill me or I could never change back.

When I finally broke and admitted my feelings I felt as if a ten ton weight had been lifted off my shoulders.

These are all things I have long known about myself. I cannot deny them any more than I could deny having blue eyes.

Where are the questions? 

Well it is in how I react to some things. 

I don’t feel any change in myself while wearing women’s clothing. I enjoy wearing them, I enjoy the way I look in them after all it allows me to have a physical connection to the way I see myself inside, but really, when you cut everything else away, I feel the same as I do while wearing mens clothing. I am still me, that’s all, nothing more. There is no “charge” or excitement. 

Wearing make up does nothing more than improve my looks a bit, because honestly, I don’t see myself as very attractive and no amount of make up is going to change that.

Even when dressing stealth I feel that the things I am wearing are really nothing at all, I have the right to be wearing them, they are the things I have no reason to not be wearing.

I know that when I look in the mirror I see a face that doesn’t really belong to me. Yes, it is the face that I have worn all my life, but it’s more like a bad joke, like I someone came along while I was sleeping and glued this face over my real one. 

Having male “parts” isn’t something I find distressful, I would rather be a physical female, but I can live with what I have. I guess that I have had this body long enough that I’m simply use to it.

The hardest part of this is not seeing any change in myself. Because to this point everything has been internal… changes in the way I think about things, the way i feel about things, and even those couldn’t be called major. There haven’t been any large scale shifts in the way I seem to see myself in my minds eye, when I just let myself drift, I don’t notice any real difference in the way things work.

There are no physical reference to mark any change. There isn’t any effects of hormones or surgeries that I can point to and say, “There! There is proof I have made these changes!”

Just how am I suppose to be different from before?

How can I tell if there has really been a transition? How can I tell what is the “new” me and what of the “old” me is gone?

It is not having any markers to show my progress, or lack there of, that I am having such a problem with. How am I suppose to know that all of this isn’t just in my head? Maybe I’m just plain out crazy…


Heh… I guess as long as I think things might just in my head, then I haven’t accepted myself…. 





Just A Strange Day



Today has been really strange. 

Personally, I would describe the day as mushy… though I know that doesn’t make sense.

My thoughts seem to be padded in cotton, nothing is urgent or pressing, Nothing has made me feel anxious or even uncomfortable.

I spent the entire day trying to figure out what I could post about and really nothing came to mind. I read other posts and even spent time on one forums that I frequent. 

The only thing that caught my attention was a thread dealing with the issue of being TG without the driving need to transition physically.

That is where I am right now, and I read more than a few people who have come to terms with their feelings on the matter. People who were where I am at one point, that is feeling as if they didn’t fit into the TG conversation because they didn’t share the experience of going through physical tradition. That maybe they weren’t really TG at all because all they had read, the only conversation they had seen, was about those who were not only going through that physical transition, but were also spending more and more time living as their target gender while they were not.

I understand those feelings completely. Time after time I have questioned if I am TG when I am reading about those going through the process of physical transition while I do not have that driving need.

My needs are more in regards to my mental and emotional transition. 

There are many reasons why I’m not concerned with my physical transition, reasons that I cannot do anything about and that I am coming to accept. My mental and emotional transition is another matter all together. 

That is something that I can work on, it is something that I can get help with. It is something that I want and need to become comfortable with, it is something I want to fully accept and embrace.