Tuesday, November 10, 2020

No More Closets

I was in the closet for a very long time.

Although my interests in feminine things go back to my earliest memories, I did not take up crossdressing until I was 12-years-old. But once I began, I crossdressed at every opportunity, typically whenever I found myself alone at home.

When I was 19, I reached my tipping point and had to let Stana out of the closet. So I dressed en femme on Halloween despite the fact that I had nowhere to go. Unlike today, where there is a Halloween event everywhere you turn, back in the late-1970s, there was not much Halloween-wise for a young adult. I had not been invited to any Halloween parties (I didn't even know of any Halloween parties) and I was too young to go to any bar that might be celebrating Halloween. So, Mom let her “daughter” borrow the car and I visited some friends and relatives to “trick or treat.” (How desperate is that?)

Post-Halloween, I was back in the closet honing my femulating skills while waiting for next year’s Halloween party invitations. I never went out en femme to trick or treat again, but I did get a few party invitations over the years. 

I always attended the parties dressed as a woman, not as a woman wearing a woman’s costume. Invariably, some party-goer would wonder why I wasn’t wearing a costume and I would explain to their astonishment that I was in costume. Post-Halloween, I would be back in the closet again, but at least I realized that all the practice in the closet was not for naught.

Online (via CompuServe’s Genderline), I discovered and joined a local support group in the early 1980s. Now, I was able to get out of the house en femme on days besides the last day of months beginning with the letter O. I attended meetings once or twice per month, always dressing at home and driving to the meeting hall 25 miles away. 

On occasion, the support group sponsored outings – usually dinners at local restaurants, which sheltered us in a private room so we would not to mix with the civilians. I always attended, but being a rebel, I made a point of using the public ladies’ restroom instead of the private restroom that had been assigned to us.

I wanted more and began attending trans conventions, which gave me the opportunity to have the run of a whole hotel for a long weekend en femme. But I realized that I was still in the closet. I just had more closet-space: in my home, in my support group’s meeting places and in trans convention hotels.

I still wanted more, so I became a little more adventurous. On my way to support group meetings, I would stop off to buy a refreshment at a convenience store or fast food joint. Amazingly, no one seemed to notice or care that I was en femme. I was passing or at least, I was accepted and that emboldened me to do more. 

It took 55 years, but I finally summoned up enough courage to go out in public en femme. I decided to make that leap by going to the mall. I dressed en femme, drove to the mall, arrived just as it opened and sat in my car for a half hour trying to muster the courage to exit the car and walk across the parking lot to the mall entrance.

I finally pushed myself and did it and spent the better part of day at the mall having the time of my life. Some people read me, but it was not the end of the world and once I got a taste of the world en femme, I wanted more. 

Subsequently, I picked my days and spent them en femme, shopping, dining, being entertained, enjoying the arts, etc., etc. and I loved it, doing what other women did when they were out.

It all felt so natural to me. I was always feminine. As I have written here before, I was not a female trapped in a male body, rather I was me trapped by society’s expectations of what a male was supposed to be. The “problem” was that I preferred to fulfill society’s expectations of what a woman was supposed to be. 

Finally, I realized I was a woman, who happened to have a male body, but I was not going to let that little handicap hinder me from being the best woman I could be.

And so it goes.

Cavet Emptor: Today’s post originally appeared here in 2011. I rewrote it and reposted it in 2015 and I rewrote it once again and reposted it today.

Wearing father and son outfits from Boston Proper
Wearing father and son outfits from Boston Proper

Mark McKinney femulating in The Kids in the Hall’s 1996 film Brain Candy.
You can view the film on YouTube.


  1. I well remember the angst as I sat in the car with a GG friend - I was all dressed up but I couldn't bring myself to make that final step outside.
    My friend said, "You've come a long way to be with me today - you know you want to do it, and if you don't you'll regret it all the way home.."
    She was right - and I made my mind up. I forced myself to open the car door.
    Stepping outside dressed as a woman was the scariest thing I'd ever done.. My heart was pounding and I felt hollow inside.. but once we started walking together, I suddenly felt a great sense of calm and peace come over me. She linked arms with me and we walked in step.. This was how I was meant to be - listening to my shoes, my skirt fluttering around my knees.. I wish I could have stopped the clock at that moment.

    1. I hear you, G. My first outing to the local casino with 2 of my GG friends had a similar moment. I'd been out and about - both alone and with my Sister Friends - but the final step still hadn't been taken. The Ladies Room. (I had previously my concern about visiting a public restroom on an earlier coffee date.) Well, we were sitting at one of the bars and enjoying talk and drinks when we decided to stroll around. Linda said she needed the ladies room, and I hesitated. But only for a moment, because Sarah grabbed me by the arm and boldly marched me toward that Forbidden Palace. And, of course, nothing blew up, no one called the police, we all just tended to business and went on our way.
      How wonderful it is to have caring, yet forceful, friends!

  2. A feeling many of us are familiar with. My most recent business trip out of town (blog post coming SOON, I promise!) showed me just how far I'd come. From that first time many years ago when I dressed and stood just inside the hotel room door, staring at it for what felt like HOURS, trying to muster up the courage to open it and step out - to 2 weeks ago, when there was no hint of hesitation in ANY of my actions. Boldly going into shops, restaurants, even Wal*Mart! (giggle)
    Oh, and never apologize for reprinting an older article - just refer to it as "Stana's Greatest Hits"!

  3. I did this in the opposite order to you, Stana. First I visited a mall many miles from home, and it was a success, so within days I went to the Long Tall Sally shop in Edinburgh. After going to shops on several occasions with nothing terrible happening, I summoned up the courage to go to a support group. Through friends I made at the support group, I discovered what a great resource charity shops (thrifts) are for femulators. Soon I was arranging to meet trans-friends in the outside world.
    Penny from Edinburgh.

  4. Dear Stana , I love the article No More Closets , I was just looking at pictures of myself at 20 years old in the 70s and realized how cut a gurl I would have been dressed enfemme , but in those days there wasn't the good societal attitude towards being gender fluid like there is today .

  5. Dear Stana , I love the article No More Closets , I was just looking at pictures of myself at 20 years old in the 70s and realized how cut a gurl I would have been dressed enfemme , but in those days there wasn't the good societal attitude towards being gender fluid like there is today .