By now, if you've read everything prior to this entry, you may have gleaned that I'm not exactly a public figure. You don't know my given birth name, the kinds of pets I keep, the specific nature of my work or the name of the town I live in. I even provided a pseudonym with which we may refer to my wife, and will do the same for any close acquaintances who'll be mentioned in this very post. My blog is deeper undercover than a Venezuelan CIA sleeper agent!
Security matters to the closet TG. A "free country" it may be, but there are too many circumstances where common knowledge of one's gender experiments will attract unfortunate consequences. Even if most of us keep low profiles in real life, there's a very good chance that if there's a tear in the veil of secrecy then someone will lose something useful, vital or precious - even all three.
And I acknowledge that I've got a little of something from all three categories hanging on the line, should my bi-gendered activities go live. Therefore, I exercise caution. Not only for myself but for the main reason I keep the curtains drawn when I'm girling it up - Erica. She cannot even describe the specter of dread that haunts her, that someday her parents, extended family, all of our friends, her co-workers, our future children, the Pope & the President will find out that she's married to a cross-dresser. To clarify, I'm mostly in agreement with her. My needs are complicated, but not the center of our marriage. And with the economy shaping up to be what it is, I can't go losing my job because I'm deemed incompatible working with the staff or clientele. (Or whatever excuse they'd make up.)
It's a lot easier to keep the ol' skeleton under wraps these days. I have my own house, I get time to myself, and I can shop online (not that I'm sitting on that much extra cash; did I mention the lousy economy?). But in days past, the life of this secret sister was a real pain in the ass...
CHILDHOOD marks the first moments of my discovery that I wanted to be more like the girls. But even a 1st grader knows there are some things you just don't tell other people. Especially your peers. Don't ask me how I knew, but somehow I got the memo that letting all your classmates learn that you'd rather play house than kickball would follow you around nipping at your ass like an angry shih tzu.
Parents were another subset of associates who it was wise to keep these things from. In my case especially, Dad, who rocked with Harley-Davidson, hung out with Jack Daniels, and liked to travel with Smith & Wesson. Mom was exactly the opposite - fun, warm, funny, caring and yet something made me withhold my questions from her. Even when she caught me two different times wearing her pantyhose, and even offered to talk to me about whatever I was going through, I dummied up. Probably the tenets of shame and inappropriateness that most kids like us felt when examining our genders.
ADOLESCENCE wasn't so bad, inasmuch as there was one excellent perk for a teenage CD - self-gratification. This, at least, was what adults anticipated youngsters to be doing in the privacy of their bedroom. Whether they approved or not, nobody wanted to walk into the middle of that. And it's not like they could read my mind and learn which fantasies I was mining from. They sure as hell weren't gonna ask.
My hormonal spike from grades 7-12 added another demographic to the "Do Not Tell" list: attractive girls. Which was almost agonizing since they were exactly whom I would have chosen to open up to. My fantasies expanded, but the closest I ever got to confessing my desires to anyone back then was my first girlfriend - we'll call her Mallory - who decided that she wanted to dress me as a girl for Halloween as a special exercise in dominance over an all-too-willing amour. I went on letting her think I hated it, which seemed to inspire her all the more as she divulged details of the sweetly feminine things she'd make me wear. I'd already lost my virginity to her; I wondered if it were likely I'd be the one wearing the teddy at some point.
Three months into the relationship, Mallory dumped me. October was three months away. Not even close. C'est la vie, as the heartbroken say.
Curiously, my next girlfriend (and one of my best friends to this day) - let's call her Juliet - had the unprecedented effect of distracting me almost entirely from my pocket obsession with cross-dressing. I have no theories on this, save that we were rarely a physical couple, her Christian faith gave me new ideas to think about other than sex and gender, and above all she had so much more to offer as a friend and companion than most girls I knew. I decided to preserve our relationship's beneficial qualities, even after Juliet broke up with me, by never involving her in that part of my world. (Currently renegotiating this policy.)
COLLEGE availed a brand new concept that was as frightening as it was exciting - independence! Not only could I pursue examination of my gender on a potentially social level, but I could majorly screw up my reputation in the process! I learned a lot about "give and take" during these years, but not much about accepting status quo. Never have I revealed my secret to more people than I would over the next seven years, nor would I. And the beautifully ironic thing is that it barely seems to have mattered.
Some time after I met Erica and we started dating, I gave in to the impulse to raid her closet. I'd steal the occasional scrunchie or pair of underwear, but later I would convince her to go off to class and let me sleep in her dorm room until she got back. Halfway dressed, I had no idea she'd forgotten her text book. I barely got back into bed before she came in - forgetting that I had a hair clip stuck on my head. She saw it immediately but - bless her sweet heart - believed my story when I said I was going to dress in her clothes to surprise her for a laugh when she got back. This story worked so well, she actually took pictures when she got back, and her friend down the hall, Penny, who was so amused when she saw the prints, made wardrobe suggestions for the "next time." Which, the following year, we followed. Which led to the both of them making me over for the Halloween proceeding. Score!!
After all of this transpired, I eventually decided to tell Erica the truth. I was growing rather fond of her and couldn't bear to spring my real surprise on her years down the road. She took it well, though I feared her head would explode from bottling up this information without someone to vent with, so I also told Penny, who'd become her roommate and best friend. They immediately formed a consensus that I should never, ever give in to the desire to dress as a woman again, then rarely had much else to say on the matter. Unscore.
Next: "Holli goes in-freaking-sane"