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Swimming in Alphabet Soup
Swimming in Alphabet Soup
If you spend any time at all in the wonderful world of t-girls, you'll soon discover a veritable alphabet soup of acronyms: CD, TV, TS, TG...and the list goes on. Worse yet, just about every individual has their own ideas on the definitions. So, how do we make sense of it?
Why even categorize at all? Much has been written about the evils of pigeonholing people; after all, we're all individuals, each with a unique perspective to offer. In trying to force people into one category or another, we risk missing out on some of the very characteristics that made them interesting to us in the first place. Really, how many people do you know that are 100% this or a 100% that?
Having said this, however, I don't see the practice going away anytime soon. The human mind works best when it can associate new information with known information from the past. It's how we wrap our brains around new concepts. Besides, categories aren't all bad; in many cases, these categories help foster a sense of community among the members. For those of us living "alternative" lifestyles, a sense of community is crucial.
No, the real problems arise when people become rigid in their thinking. Categories should only be thought of as loose guidelines and be fluid enough to allow movement as individuals grow. Case in point: Me!
Like many of my sisters, my first exposure to dressing in female clothing, came during my pre-teen years. God only knows what compelled me to put on my first pair of panties. But I do know that during those early, it was all about the sexual energy. So, for many years it was nothing more than a fetish.
Somewhere along the way I graduated to crossdressing. No bells went off and I didn't receive a diploma - one day it was just different. No longer content with wearing panties under my male clothes; I wanted to create the complete illusion: hair, nails, makeup - the whole works. Still, I was in the realm of fetish though: the preference for a slutty look; the sexual turn - it was all there; stronger than ever.
For many years I remained a crossdresser at heart. Sure, I became more skilled at creating the illusion of a woman and at times the desire to wear the "costume" was quite strong. Nevertheless, it remained a kink. As such, the desire ebbed and flowed. Over the years there were numerous purges and sometimes I would go for years and never once think about my alter ego.
That all changed in December 2004. In December of last year, I hadn't so much as worn a pair of panties in nearly five years. I've never known what leads to these "down times", just as I never know what triggers the return of the desire. Nevertheless, one day in mid December, I hauled out my secret box and put on the uniform. This time I found someone different staring back at me in the mirror. Thus began my new journey and yet another graduation.
But what have I graduated to? The label crossdresser no longer fits my mentality, so I have taken to referring to myself as a transvestite. But that doesn't really fit either. TS or TG? No, I don't feel I was born the wrong gender. So where do I fit?
I really haven't spent much time analyzing this or trying to find a category. Instead, I've been learning about myself and enjoying my new found feelings. I guess, if pressed to come up with a description, I would have to go with bi-gendered. Yeah, I'm BG; we should add that to the soup. Where's the governing board that serve as arbiters in these matters? I've got to get an official announcement out to them right away. LOL
In all seriousness though, the term "bi-gendered" does seem the most apt description of my feelings at the present time. First and foremost, I love being a man. I like all my male bits, well, except for all that damn hair! In most ways I think like a man and I love being a husband and father. At the same time, there are things about being male that I've never enjoyed. Like how men always feel the need to compete with one another; the fear of emotions; and how it's unacceptable to pamper yourself. And, let's not forget the dreaded conformity. If you're male, the acceptable range of behavior is quite small. Society expects all males generally behave the same way. But most of all, it's the clothes. Men's clothes are boring and basically limited to 2 things: 1) A shirt; 2) A pair of pants. Women, on the other hand, have a huge variety of clothing styles, fabrics, colors, etc. to choose from. And it doesn't stop there. It's quite acceptable, even expected, for women to do many of the things that are taboo for men.
I've always rebelled against gender norms. When I was a child, I didn't like the "hey, let's punch each other in the arm and see who flinches first" kind of contests that adolescent males need to compete in. As a young man I didn't like the "let's see how many girls we can sleep with" contests. At the same time, I have always been sensitive; always been a nurturer...you know, acted like a girl.
And then, there are the clothes. These days, I don't suppose I ever feel quite at home as when I'm dressed. I love everything about it: pampering myself with facials, buying new makeup, plucking my eyebrows, shaving my legs, wearing jewelry - and of course the endless variety of clothes and shoes. By comparison, my male self is boring. When I look into the mirror, I no longer see something kinky; I just see me.
I have a good friend that has been along for the ride with me. He has witnessed my change in attitude and the changes I have made to my male appearance. He has asked me if I am TS; the answer is an emphatic, "No." Despite the pleasure being a girl brings, I am still a male in my soul. Rather than defining myself as one gender or the other, I am embracing the duality that has always existed. And, along the way, I am breaking down the boundaries between the two, creating something new in it's place. I've never felt happier or more myself.
Meanwhile, outside of myself, the alphabet soup wars rage on. Humans will always have the need to categorize everything and everyone, while many of us will continue to resist being placed in a neat little box. Lacking a better description, for now I will categorize myself as a transvestite; at least until something better comes along.
10/28/2005 1:01 am
What a pleasure reading your blogs, particularly the "Alphabet Soup". Like you, I often enjoy writing down my thoughts, and amazingly there are a number of people on this site that actually take the time to read our stuff... actually kind of amazing some people on this site even know HOW to read !!!! LOL Just teasing boys...
I think many people appreciate the insight an article like yours provides them, and I commend you for being so articulate and so thoughtful for expressing yourself in the lovely manner and style you have.
Would love to meet someday, doubt if we would have much time to be writing in our journals if we did though.
Take care, you seem wonderful. Jodie
PS: I would simply categorize you as a thoughtful, sensitive, delightful person. Works for me, far better than just gender.