Tuesday, November 3, 2009

whatever works

There is a joke that has been going around the transgender community for awhile that goes like this:

What's the difference between a crossdresser and a transsexual?

Three years.

The joke implies that when someone realizes that he or she is a crossdresser, it takes three years to realize that he or she is a transsexual.

There is some truth to that joke; I have witnessed many folks come out as crossdressers, only to come out as transsexuals three or so years later.

But, sometimes it takes longer.

After crossdressing for over four decades, I recently came to the realization that I am a woman.

I am not a woman trapped in a man's body, I am really a woman. I think as a woman, I emote as a woman, I act as a woman, I speak as a woman, and whenever the opportunity arises, I present as a woman. To most of my acquaintances I am the most womanly male they know and that's because I really am a woman.

True, my container is male (more or less), but its contents are 100% female.

I am very adverse to fooling around with my container. Many things can go wrong and so far, my container has held up pretty well, so why mess with it. As a result, I have no interest in taking hormones or having surgery to modify my container so that it matches its contents.

I am very happy being a woman and very glad that I am not a "man." I might be happier if I could present as a woman all of the time, but I have made choices in my life that make that impossible. So I live part-time as a male and part-time as a female, but no matter how I live, I am a woman all the time.

Whatever works.


  1. I think the old joke is true because many of us are in denial, we do not want to admit to ourselves. We know sub-consciously that as a transsexual, life is hard.

  2. Diana --- Yes, denial is a big part of it.

  3. What a brave, free and intuitive read of yourself Staci. I think that by "owning" the word Woman, you take away a little of the words power to define, differentiate and pigeonhole.

    Leading the way as always you are...

    Love the Ann Taylor outfit featured today in your Femulate Her section.

    Happy day - Petra

  4. Petra --- Thank you for your comments.

    And I love the leopard print dress you bought at Ann Taylor (want to see photos of you in it real soon now).

  5. Diana: That is exactly the reason I didn't "come out" as a woman until I was in my mid-40's. I finally came to a point at which I knew that, yes, life as a transsexual is hard, but the alternative for me was literally not to live at all.

    Not all transgenders, transsexuals or crossdressers (whatever those terms mean!) come to that point. If you don't, and you can come to a point of equilibrium as Staci has, great for you. As it happened, choosing that wasn't an option for me.

    By the way, I didn't "realize" I am a woman after a few years of cross-dressing. I knew it all along; I simply tried to deny and exorcise that knowledge. "Crossdressing" (which, for me, was really wearing "gender-appropriate" clothing) was certainly a way of coping, at least momentarily.

    Staci, I'm glad you wrote today's posting because it shows that there isn't one way to be a woman, transgender, crossdresser or whatever we want to call ourselves. In short, there isn't--thankfully!--one way to be one's self.

  6. Justine --- Like I said, "whatever works."

    By the way, I appropriated "whatever works" from Woody Allen's latest opus of the same name, which I recommend highly.

  7. I like this post.

    You always have such good insights

  8. Excelent! Excellent! Excellent article.

    Staci what you say hits home for others, me included. For years I thought of myself as a woman trapped in a man's body. For years I warred within myself over it.

    Then, my 'Ah Ha Moment' freed me from my misperception. I was a woman regardless of the outside packaging. I always thought, talked, acted as well as having the emotions and mannerisms of a woman. It is still the same today.

    We are who we are by our inner spirit and soul. Mine is female, a woman and I have seen that reflection in the mirror everyday for years. I hope and pray someday that everyone can be accepted for who they are on the inside and not because of their outer wrapping.

    Thanks for this wonderful article. Thanks for your wonderful blog.

  9. Staci, I have read your blog for a long time and, for me, this is probably the best post you have ever done. The reason is that it directly relates to me and my own story. Thanks for writing it.

    Oh, and here in Cali, it only takes two years. Must be the water, or perhaps the sun.

    Love the Ann Taylor outfit also, Petra.

    Calie xx

  10. Love your blog, but if I may be judgemental for the moment (and I write as a life-coach and 40-year femulator);

    "A transexual is committed, but a cross-dresser is just a w*nker"

  11. Closetta --- Why do you say that a crossdresser is just a winker? I don't get it! The only crossdressers I ever saw winking were dressed as Sarah Palin for Halloween.

  12. Josie and Calie --- Thank you for the nice comments. I am very proud of that posting.

  13. Susan McDonnellNovember 04, 2009

    You know, I've always said that a real women wear pantyhose and crossdressers wear garters and stockings. Lately I think it's evolved into real women don't wear hose at all.

    For me, it's pantyhose. I wear the light support kind. They help smooth out my blotchy legs.

    I too must say, Staci, that I could just as easily have written your statement. All of it applies to me as well.

  14. Susan --- I only wear pantyhose or tights, although back when I first started femulating, there was no such a thing as pantyhose. So back then, I wore stockings held up by the garters of a girdle.

  15. You know, I never thought about it, but from the time when I started dressing again, it took me almost exactly three years to transition.

    But, if you would have asked me, when I first started dressing, if I was going to transition, I would have said no.


  16. So, if you are a woman inside and you know it, does that mean that now when you get up and put on guy clothes, you are masculating, as in "She masculated?"

    Best on your continuing journey to find and claim yourself past the expectations placed on you when people first saw you as male. Claim your heart, your spirit over those expectations...

  17. Susan --- Three years seems to be the magic number!

  18. Anonymous --- I fantasize about what I am wearing. When I put on my briefs in the morning, I say to myself that I am putting on panties; when I put on my T-shirt, I say its a sports bra; my sox are knee-highs, etc., etc.

    Thank-you for the very kind words in your second comment.

  19. Thanks for a lovely blog. I've just found this post.

    Its interesting but I'd never thought about it in this way. I started crossdressing when I was in my teens but remember wearing a dress when I was about 6. From my mid 20s I've had conversations with friends, doctors and counsellors about wanting to change sex.
    In the last couple of years I've openly considered myself to be a TS. Despite having assessments and trying to be referred to a gender clinic, successfully to Charing Cross even but I had pull out for family reasons, I was beginning to think that because I wasn't transitioning I couldn't be TS and should stop referring to myself in that way.

    None of the people I know really know me because of the image I've projected for all of my life while hiding the real me away.

    However, having read this post I realise that I can be a woman but still have to put up with having a male body. At least until such time as I can actually begin the process of transitioning. That might even be this year sometime, at least if I can pursuade my nice doctor to support me in this.