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Thread: It was bad for a bit but then it got better.

  1. #1
    Member Julie1123's Avatar
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    It was bad for a bit but then it got better.

    A quick recap, wife is pro transgender rights but doesn't want anything to do with my crossdressing. We have an out of sight, out of mind, DADT agreement.

    About a week or so ago, we were having a fantastic day, I had gotten very little sleep the night before so I took a nap in the afternoon while she mucked about the house. When I woke up she was clearly upset. I had to leave for a time sensitive errand but I asked her what was bothering her before I went, she said we could talk about it when I got back because she didn't want it to blowup when I needed to leave. Not having any indication of what it could be I asked her just to give me an idea before i left, she replied, "Your crossdressing." My heart sank.

    Upon my return we sat down to discuss it. It was an accumulation of a few things. The last being, that while I was napping she had gone down to the basement to break down cardboard boxes for recycle. The basement is typically my domain but she wanted to help out since I had been so busy lately. She found a shoebox that I hadn't gotten rid of and it was an expensive shoe store. She said she didn't really care about the cost, it was my money to do with what I wanted. It was more that with some other things that had happened it had upset her. We recently got a new bedroom set, really nice, and we each ended up with separate dressers. She admitted that she got curious to see how I had organized my dresser and had looked through the drawers. She knew my female clothes were in there and that her being upset over seeing the skirts in there wasn't anything that was my fault. Another thing that came up is that she always calls me when she's on her way home from work and we talk while she's driving, lately I've been so distracted by work that by the time she calls I really need to use the bathroom and the phone call gives me enough pause to realize this so I've ended several calls before she's gotten home so that I could use the bathroom. She assumed I was changing out of women's clothes whenever I did this and was starting to think that I dressed a lot more frequently than I admitted to. The last thing that she was starting to worry about is that we've recently decided we definitely want to try and have kids, and since we've agreed to keep my crossdressing between the two of us, and her thinking that I was dressing a lot more than I do when she wasn't home, how was this going to work with kids. She didn't really want me to dress in front of the kids, not because she thought it was wrong, and if our kids ended being crossdressers she would definitely support them in that, but because kids have no filters and would most likely out me to anyone and everyone.

    I apologized about the shoebox and asked her if there had been anything else I hadn't kept out of sight? And she said there wasn't, that I was being very good about that. I brought up how before we got married that she had asked me to make as sure as possible that I didn't want to transition or dress full time and that I struggled for awhile on how to figure that out. That eventually it boiled down to one question. "How would things be different if she was fully accepting of my crossdressing?" and that the answer was, "Not that much." I told her a bit about my typical dressing, that I tend towards more lounge around the house type clothes rather than the skirts and dresses. She asked if I meant lingerie and I told her no, that it was typically stuff like sweats and tee shirts (yeah yeah yeah, you can all raz me about that one ). That I typically do all my usual stuff, work, read, play video games, clean the house, just in more feminine attire. That I still considered myself a man, just wearing different clothes. That for some reason it makes me feel calm and alleviates stress. I told her that when I do dress that I change a good deal in advance of her getting off work and there was only a time or two that I had still been dressed when she called and that I had said I needed to change, she couldn't recall when I had done that and I said it was probably unnoteworthy because we were going out when she got home so it made sense for other reasons. In regards to the kids I stressed that I really wished she would have brought it up before it got to the point of upsetting her so that we could figure it out together as a team vs when she's upset and I'm worried. We brainstormed a few solutions. I also mentioned that I feel like I get mixed signals from her, that she's very pro-transgender rights but she gets so upset when it comes to my dressing. She recognized that there is a conflict there and wasn't really sure why there is. At that point we were both feeling a bit better, her less upset and me less worried I decided to let the conversation go as we had covered a lot of stuff and I didn't want to get us both riled up again trying to figure out her internal conflict with nerves a bit raw.

    A few days later we were going to a get together and talking about who might be there, I mentioned James and Elliot might be there, James is FtM and pretty open about it. My wife responded, "I really don't know why I have such a hard time with your dressing, I have no problem with James at all." It was an absolutely sincere statement. I told her I had been mulling over that it might be good for us if we talked more about what I do when I dress so that she has a clearer picture of it and so it doesn't get overly built up in her mind to the point where she can't handle it. Also, that if she wanted to try and get to the bottom of her internal conflict over it that we could definitely do that. That we could have these discussions not so that boundaries might change but so that she might have an easier time with it. We talked a bit about it. She thinks its mainly due to her perception of me. That one of the first things that drew her to me when we met was that I was a strong defender type. I brought up that I had been reading a history on crossdressing. How that women who lived as men were often accepted as long as they didn't make it known they were women but for men it was very different. That it boiled down to the belief on inequality of the sexes. Women were accepted as men because they were trying to become better than what they are without challenging the gender roles but men were seen as making themselves less. This gave her a bit of a pause. Again, I let the conversation wander off without pressing too much.

    I think a key to her having less of an internal struggle over my dressing is the realization that I'm the same person no matter what clothes I'm wearing. I'm hoping that we don't go another year before it comes up again. Thank you for reading all of this, as I don't have anyone else to talk to, its good to do that here.
    "Shared pain is lessened; shared joy, increased - thus we do refute entropy." ~Spider Robinson

  2. #2
    Senior Member Tracy Irving's Avatar
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    Thank you for sharing your story. I hope everything works out for you.

    It is always sad to read about someone claiming to be pro transgender unless it hits to close to home. "Not in my backyard", as they say.

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    Hi Julie,

    My situation is not at all dissimilar to yours. My advice is that although any communication is good it doesn't mean it has actually achieved anything.

    Imo your doing exactly the right things, it can only help, but (without trying to sound to negative) don't get lulled into believing she will have a sudden change of heart any time soon.

    I hope for your sake this does happen though!

    I've decided to continue with communication when asked for it rather than pushing. She knows what I do now, we have gone through circles and circles in all sorts of ways. I always hope she will come around but if not I must be prepared to accept that.

    All the best to you,

    Tammy

  4. #4
    Yeah Ok like whatever Tracii G's Avatar
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    Hum she would support your kids being CDers if it happened but for you no?
    Sounds a bit hypocritical to me.
    She must be worried about how others view her because you are a CD. The old not in my backyard type.
    Good luck.
    Head Executive Chief of the Dept of Redundancy Dept.

  5. #5
    Member Julie1123's Avatar
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    Definitely not expecting any sort of change as to her wanting to be more involved with my dressing. I think that would be a long shot. Just hoping she can be more at peace with it so its more of just something that I do rather than something that causes her worry.

    She definitely recognizes that she is hypocritical and I tend to believe her when she says that it might be because its challenging her perception of me. That somehow the dressing makes me something other than what she thinks I am.
    "Shared pain is lessened; shared joy, increased - thus we do refute entropy." ~Spider Robinson

  6. #6
    Member KatrinaK's Avatar
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    Here are a few thoughts. First, I fail to see the hypocrisy at all Tracii. There is a WORLD of difference between accepting someone, or defending someone's rights, etc, than CHOOSING TO BE INTIMATE WITH THEM. This is a dichotomy i struggle with on these forums constantly. Just because she would accept a trans child, doesn't make being intimate with a trans person any more appealing. They are apples and oranges. Frankly there's a misguided sense of self-entitlement to believe that our spouses must unconditionally accept us including on an intimate level or be transphobic. And I'm using "intimate" in a broader sense than sexual. My point here is that just because she's socially tolerant/accepting has nothing to do with her attraction/intimate choices and nobody is unconditionally entitled to the attraction, respect and acceptance of their spouse. These things are earned.

    I'm going through something not so different with my wife. She swings back and forth. Right now we talk about it, but she doesn't want to participate in any way. She says that may change and she's open to some level of experimentation but we're taking it very slow. The one thing that's made a huge difference is talking about it. Regularly. The most important thing is to understand and respect her boundaries. It sounds like you're in a fairly healthy place as far communication is concerned. Keep it up. We're about to start counseling with a specialist in gender nonconformity and alternative families. I'll let you know how that goes, but our preliminary sessions were very encouraging.

    I think you're reading too much into how she feels about other trans people. She's not married to them. She's married to you.

  7. #7
    Member Julie1123's Avatar
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    I definitely agree, Katrina. Bringing up how she feels about other trans people was more of just a way to get to talking about why it bothers her that I'm that way.

    I hope the counseling is good for your wife and you. Keep us posted!
    "Shared pain is lessened; shared joy, increased - thus we do refute entropy." ~Spider Robinson

  8. #8
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    Hi Julie...It's Scarlett and I can definitely relate to your writings here. Currently, my wife is no where near in the opposition to my cross dressing as your wife is right now. But she used to be up until about a year or two ago.

    She first found photos on our common business computer we share for business reasons and was quite surprised because a few years back, the same thing happened and she had a fit and I had to purge my entire collection of Scarlett's things. They ended up in the bottom of our county landfill. Wish I had all of that back - it was quite a collection.

    This last time she found the photos I forgot to erase from the same computer, I got the silent treatment for a day and a half, then had a short talk about my cross dressing, went on our regular date night where the subject never came up and we had a supper time doing dinner and a movie and the fireworks flew after we lit a few candles in the bedroom when we got home. So all was well.

    A few days later, she told me it was just fine if I cross dressed, she just didn't want me to do it while she was at home (which was fine with me) and to keep all of my Scarlett photos on my personal laptop and IPad and if I ever put them up for viewing on our larger screened business computer, just make sure to delete them when I was finished viewing them. And that was fine as well.

    Two weeks before we moved into our dream home this past November, I asked her if I could keep all of my cross dressing things stored in a couple of closets in our home and use a few chest of drawers for some other things. She agreed and said just do your best to try to keep things out of sight and to use my suit bags to keep all of the tops and skirts in so if a visitor comes over, all of Scarlett's things won't be in sight.

    Now all is well and I have been abiding by the rules and limits that we have both agreed to and I'm hoping for your sake, Julie, your wife will lighten up over the next months and years because as you mentioned in your writings, they have to realize we are still the same guys they married and the female clothes we like to wear in private has no change to us at all. It's just another side of us that we have to keep a bit more private than many of the other more than lucky girls on this site have to do.

    Thanks for reading and I'll pray for your wife's change towards being more accepting of your cross dressing...XOXOXO Scarlett

  9. #9
    Lady By Choice Leslie Langford's Avatar
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    Thank you for your informative, well presented, honest, and introspective post, Julie and let me say that I envy you for having such a mature and grounded wife that you can actually discuss your crossdressing with her like two rational adults, respect each others' views (even if you don't necessarily agree on them), and are able to come to compromises that work for both of you.

    I am especially in awe of the fact that when your wife told you that she was upset and needed to discuss something with you, she was prepared to wait until you came back from your errand to avoid a blowup just prior to your leaving. If it had been my wife, we would have had to discuss this matter RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW, "D@mn the torpedoes, full speed ahead", and never mind the fallout. It would have been all about her venting, and not necessarily coming to a resolution of the issue (assuming, of course, that I would even have had a chance to get a word in edgewise between the accusations, the hurtful comments, the sarcasm, and her dismissive tone of voice).

    In other words, my wife would likely have ripped me a new one...or tried anyway. Then again, I always give back as good as I get, so don't think I am playing the sympathy card here. It just is what it is...

    As for your wife's ambivalent attitude when it comes to transgender people in general or your crossdressing in particular, I've made this point in other posts, and I am repeating it here again: For many of our wives and SO's it simply comes down to this - sexual orientation, socialization, upbringing, intrinsic moral values, religious beliefs etc. notwithstanding - NIMBYism..."Not IN MY Back Yard".

  10. #10
    Gold Member Jaylyn's Avatar
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    Julie after reading your post I can sense that maybe you and your wife will eventually work everything out. I've been thru a situation similar and again not similar to yours. My wife when I told her about Jaylyn accepted the whole thing, she thought it was exciting to have Jaylyn for a friend and even in a sexual way ( which surprised me excuse me different story), but the acceptance of Jaylyn only lasted a couple years then it was more of just do it and only when she was not here. I hope your wife will not be like mine as of now one day we can talk about it and the next she rolls her eyes about it and acts like it never happened.
    Your right about keeping the communications going as so many have already stated. I wish you luck and hoping she will see you in the same light as when y'all were married except that she will accept the changes we CDs make in the lives of the ones we love the most. I would hate to give up my dressing and God forbid if I ever start thinking of purging again. Hang in there Julie and keep talking and take it slow and gradual and maybe she'll come around. GG though have a tendency to go in and out of moods all the time or as I think they do. Hope I don't get hung for making that statement.... Lol

  11. #11
    i'm whatya call manPretty aBoyNamedSue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Julie1123 View Post
    I brought up that I had been reading a history on crossdressing. How that women who lived as men were often accepted as long as they didn't make it known they were women but for men it was very different. That it boiled down to the belief on inequality of the sexes. Women were accepted as men because they were trying to become better than what they are without challenging the gender roles but men were seen as making themselves less.
    I can't help but think this is the main reason MtF trans people, drag queens, transfemme, genderqueer male-at-birth folks are looked down upon. There is a pervasive cultural norm that says men are better than women. Men are stronger, louder, bigger, taller and society places a high importance on all those traits. Until society truly and unequivocally sees women and the traits women possess as equal with those of men, trans people will always have the uphill battle that is faced today.
    My femme name is Sayyidah but a lot of my friends here call me Sue.
    "Women give life! That on its own is inspiring. Besides, women are prettier." Jujubee

  12. #12
    Aspiring Member Genny B's Avatar
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    Some excellent points in your conversation! I better go write them down before I forget!

    Genny B
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    All Girl on the inside!

  13. #13
    Aspiring Member LeannS's Avatar
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    Julie it is good to hear that the lines of communications are open. My wife works in a medical clinic and she sees the transitioning people come through and she is accepting of them but we are in a DADT. I would love to go for a trip dressed but I guess that won't happen when she is in the car.
    If you can't laugh and have fun you might as well go home.

  14. #14
    Member Julie Slowinski's Avatar
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    Hi Julie, Very nice story. You seem to have a very level perspective about your crossdressing - I think that will serve you well in your marital relations. I think you are on the right path in terms of more communication to alleviate fears before her imagination gets the best of her.

    On the question of acceptance, yes itís a totally different thing when it comes to a loved one, and even more complicated for a spouse. I think the reason wives have trouble is the same reason we have trouble and spend so many years in the closet. Our spouse is an extension of us. So in some sense, your crossdressing is a reflection on her, her choice in a man. Now I donít think this is an appropriate way of thinking, and Iíll bet your wife would agree, but we are talking about emotions here, which often have little to do with our rational thoughts. Rational thoughts are the ones that tell her support the tg community. Emotions are about how she feels she is going to be perceived by friends and family. And yes the point about society putting less value to women is part of that. Even the most fervent feminist has had that ingrained in them since birth and has to consciously fight those feelings. I guess my point is that your wife, like mine who is not an active participant, is still a participant. The problem is that she has not had the same number of years you have had to come to terms with it. To understand and work through the emotions and subtle stereotypes. Regular communication will really help her in these regard. Luckily she has a levelheaded husband to help her through the maze.
    I hope the best for both of you,
    ❤️❤️🧚❤️❤️
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  15. #15
    Silver Member alwayshave's Avatar
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    Julie, I believe your wife's quandary regarding dressing/trans, is the difference between someone you are in a relationship with and someone you are not.
    Please call me Jamie, I always_have crossdressed, I always will, "alwayshave".

  16. #16
    Platinum Member Beverley Sims's Avatar
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    Not in my backyard says it all.
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    and beauty will follow.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Nikkilovesdresses's Avatar
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    2 things strike me about your comment.

    Firstly, you and your wife seem to be excellent communicators, though it would help both of you to communicate more often.

    Secondly, you need to find a third party to open up to. I know we are FABULOUS but we are not the same thing as a face-to-face with a real person.

    One option would be to combine 1 & 2 and talk to your wife about your need to talk to a third party. She must need this too, so you could both find somebody. If the idea terrifies her, there's always the option of a therapist. An expensive option though...

    Good luck Julie.
    I used to have a short attention spa

  18. #18
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    Thanks for the story. I'm happy for you that your wife is so forthcoming about her concerns. It is so much easier to overcome fears when they're out in the open. In some ways, I'd prefer your situation to mine. Although my wife sees me dressed nearly every day, she clearly doesn't like it but refuses to talk about why. So we'll be stuck where we are for years to come, while your relationship continually improves.

  19. #19
    Gold Member Teresa's Avatar
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    Julie,
    So as a male you are stuck in a male straightjacket as far as your wife is concerned , and yet she has no such problem and yet she can set most if not all the rules . Suuport for others is understandable because it's not on her doorstep but you are .

    OK kids and CDing is a contentious issue , I agree with your wife you have to be careful what burden and problems you inflict on a child unwittingly . You have to play that one by ear , first point is have the kids and enjoy them , you may find your CDing goes on the back burner through them anyway . Please don't take this wrong but it's all about you at the moment , your wife is thinking about kids and she knows what that is going to mean to her and is obviously concerned about the pressure your CDing might give her on top . I would suggest for a while you become a supportive parent first and a CDer second . I assume you will be the only breadwinner so don't take any risks with being too open with your dressing she will need to know she has that security .
    The real me ,no going back.

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