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Thread: Whatever you do don't look behind you !!

  1. #1
    Platinum Member Teresa's Avatar
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    Whatever you do don't look behind you !!

    This came out of a rather heated debate with a TG friend at a recent social meeting .

    The first point that astounds me is people won't or can't accept I go out full time , this particular person argued it wasn't possible !!

    She has an accepting wife who helps with her makeup and chooses her clothes , for her age she is perfectly passable BUT ! Everytime this subject comes up she tells me about a female neighbour who would take photographs and mouth it off to everyone about her weird neighbours . She also says she won't dress in front of her wife's family because they would act badly so she doesn't dress out of respect . I can't decide whether shes being respectful or using these reasons as an excuse .

    I suggested her problem was not being full time , at this she told me it's impossible because people will be laughing and making fun behind our backs , I tried to convince it doesn't happen but she became more heated telling me I was talking BS ! I came away shaking my head , thinking we have a bigot in our own midst .

    I could tell so many stories to prove her wrong but will just recall one from only yesterday ( Saturday ) . I'd run low on provisions and had to drop in at the supermarket to pick up some basics like bread and butter . The store was heaving the checkout lines all full , I watched a little girl unloading the trolley onto the conveyor while the mother chatted to another shopper in front of me . I smiled at the little girl and then said to the two ladies , " It's great to have a little helper , can I borrow her ?" I then asked if she'd brought her money with her , she didn't understand so the mother asked , " Are you paying ? the little girl replied , " No way , my mum always pays ! " and then gave her mum a hug . As they left the checkout they both gave me a smile and a wave and I continued a brief conversation with the lady in front of me .

    It may be a simple story but it happens all the time , do I get strange looks , am I considered weird , do people steer round me or go to another checkout ?
    No of course they don't .
    The real me ,no going back.

  2. #2
    Silver Member Micki_Finn's Avatar
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    Sorry, but you’re both right. You say you can prove that nobody makes fun of you behind your back. How? Are you psychic? God perhaps? You can’t possibly know what happens when you’re not around and I can almost guarantee you that at some point SOMEone has made fun of you behind your back.

    That being said, you’re just as likely to have someone make fun of you behind your back because of your weight, age, disability, hair color, way you walk, or any infinite number of other things, but that’s no reason to hide from the world, and it certainly doesn’t make it impossible to be full time, especially if you don’t care about people making fun of you.

  3. #3
    Yeah Ok like whatever Tracii G's Avatar
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    Teresa don't worry so much about what she says you know what you do everyday.
    You can't or shouldn't feel obligated to make her agree with you.
    We have all been laughed at sometime in the past.
    Head Executive Chief of the Dept of Redundancy Dept.
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  4. #4
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    We all tend to see what we want to. I dress in casual women's clothes full time. Over the years I've run into many different variations regarding acceptance. Some of it is acceptance of who we are. I've had people treat me as a woman and yet had another woman yell "he has a bra on". Some may be an excuse to not go out dressed. Fear of disaproval may be the other problem.

  5. #5
    Junior Member Marianne S's Avatar
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    Teresa, your TG friend may be missing out by never venturing out in public, but I think it's totally wrong to label her a "bigot." She's just plain FEARFUL, that's all. That's something entirely different, which calls for sympathy and understanding.

    "Bigotry" implies an irrational hatred or intolerance of some person or group or practice or belief system. If your friend were "bigoted" toward crossdressing, she wouldn't be your friend, would she? And she certainly wouldn't be practicing it herself!

    Let's take a parallel example. One thing that scares a surprising number of people is having to speak in public in front of an audience. They're anxious about how they're going to come across. They're afraid they'll make fools of themselves, and people are going to jeer or laugh--behind their backs if not to their faces. Needless to say, this fear may be exaggerated, but many people shrink from public speaking anyway. Does this mean they're "bigoted" toward the practice of public speaking, or detest those who do it? Of course not! On the contrary, they're probably envious or admiring toward those who do it.

    Come to that, a number of people suffer from plain old "social anxiety" in any context and are shy about meeting new people--never mind doing so while crossdressed!

    It's possible that your friend's whole family is "bigoted" about gender nonconformance, but I haven't heard any evidence that she is herself. And I haven't heard that she actually criticizes you for going out in public. At most she sounds surprised that you're able to do it. For all I know, she too could be envious of you. But most people do want to maintain relationships with their families--"bigoted" or not--or are afraid of what other people might think of them and how it will impact their lives, both personal and professional.

    And are you and your friend headed on the same path in life? Are you considering transition, say, while your friend has no such intention? That would make every difference to her motivation--or lack of it!--for going out in public.

    Another thing I don't know is how passable is "passable"? Some of us may be able to "pass" visually, even at close range--but the moment we open our mouths to speak, people are gonna know! I wonder, did that mother with her little girl actually think you're a woman? Or did she realize you were crossdressed? Either way, it may not matter to you, but if your friend thinks you're passing totally as a woman, voice included, and if she's like me, thinking her voice is sure to give her away, that's a major deterrent to going out in public.

    Then too, the idea of what the nosy neighbors might think can be another deterrent to going out in public. I've done it a few times myself, sometimes accompanied by my wife--though generally keeping my mouth shut, for reasons already stated! However, we both always liked privacy, and in both of the homes we've lived in here in the U.S., there was no chance of any neighbors noticing. All I (or we) had to do was hop in a car, parked in a secluded driveway, and zoom off unseen into a world of anonymous crowds where nobody knew us. If anyone thought I was weird, so what? Chances are I'd never see any of them again! But population is denser in the UK, houses and flats are built practically on top of one another, and anyone so much as stepping outside their front door, especially if they're parked on the street, runs a significant risk of being spotted by that nosy neighbor peeping from behind her curtains. (Some pathetic people have nothing better to do with their time!) So I'm not surprised your friend is nervous about being spotted by the neighborhood gossip, who may like nothing better than spreading news that makes other people "look bad."

    In short, why don't you give this sister a break? If she's not criticizing you for your choice to boldly go where others wouldn't dare, why would you criticize her for being too timid to do the same? I understand of course that the two of you have different beliefs and feelings about the wisdom and practicality of doing so, and I do sincerely commend you for trying to persuade her that it's safe to venture forth into a broader world. I do understand why you'd have an "argument" resulting from differences of opinion in the course of this persuasion.

    Rather, what I'm wondering is why you seem so vehement about this argument, and even hostile toward your friend, who is only struggling with her own feelings and circumstances. What's eating you? Why are her choices any skin off your nose?

    Sometimes we can project our feelings and desires onto another person. so we imagine what is "right" for ourselves should be "right" for them too, and they should be doing or feeling the same. If we make that mistake, we're going to get frustrated, even angry, when they don't do or feel as we do, and "go their own way" instead.

    Sometimes we can overidentify with another person and get too emotionally entangled with them. If they make decisions we know to be foolish or harmful to themselves, or even just miss valuable opportunities in life, on the one hand we want the best for them as we would want for ourselves. On the other hand we may be frustrated and angry at them if they're not "making the right decisions." For our own good, often it's necessary to step back and detach emotionally from whatever they're doing, even if it's someone we care about who's making a mess of their lives. And unlike some, your friend sounds a long way from "making a mess of her life." She seems to be conducting herself wisely and prudently. So why worry?

    And I've often noticed how some people are under the illusion that because they've got some "issue" that's bugging them, they imagine they're entitled to "support" from the whole world in dealing with their "issue." Often the rest of the world couldn't give a damn, and has no reason to. What this attitude of entitlement leads to is a mindset that irrationally divides the world into "two kinds of people." Anyone who isn't a "friend," and an active supporter, is classed as an "enemy." The slogan is "If you're not with us, you're against us!" This mode of thinking leaves no opportunity for any rational person to be a "moderate," or a "neutral." Among other things, this polarization is what sadly poisons our politics today. But it's just as relevant at the level of the individual. Your friend is a "moderate" and a "neutral" when it comes to going out in public. I'm not hearing that she's "against" it when you do it. She's tolerant. It's just not possible or appropriate for her, that's all.

    I'm only throwing these ideas out, just in case you find any of them resonate with you, or help to explain your apparent frustration with your TG friend. I hope in particular that you're not mad at her because she's not "supporting you" by choosing to go out in public the way you do. It's not her job to do that. Her job is to live her own life as best she can, while our job is to live ours.

    By all means encourage her that it's not so perilous to go out in public, if that's what she wants to do. Just have a little sympathy, that's all, and don't let yourself get bent out of shape on her account! All the best to you!

  6. #6
    Aspiring Member Pumped's Avatar
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    I don't know how some of you girls do go full time. I can not even imagine being out in my situation.

    First, my wife is accepting, but keep it behind closed doors.

    Second, Even if my wife changed and I went full time, I know without a doubt I would lose, or have to change jobs. You can scream discrimination all you want, but I know my employers and my customers would not accept me dressed. I have four years to retirement, and well paying job with great benefits. I am not going to take the risk to lose it.

    Friends and family? I am certain some would accept me to some point, some would dis-own me. Eh, no big deal there.

    I would bet that some people have a chuckle about the girls that dress and do not pass. I know my wife worked retail for a few years and they had a couple cross dressers that would come in at different times. One was a "man in a dress", the other took some effort to try to pass, but didn't. She told me they handled them both like any other customer, but the other clerks had a chuckle and talked about it after they left.

  7. #7
    Weirdest woman ever! docrobbysherry's Avatar
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    I could care less who does what "behind my back". Because I'm not there, I don't care!

    What I hate is people laffing at me when I can hear it. That has happened a lot when I'm out dressed.

    Conversely, I've NEVER heard anyone laff at Sherry!
    U can't keep doing the same things over and over and expect to enjoy life to the max. When u try new things, even if they r out of your comfort zone, u may experience new excitement and growth that u never expected.

    Challenge yourself and pursue your passions! When your life clock runs out, you'll have few or NO REGRETS!

  8. #8
    Platinum Member Teresa's Avatar
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    Marianne,
    Very a very carefully thought through reply , much of it I can't argue with .

    Going back the the conversation with my TG friend it was her that became heated with me over being out full time , I can only assume it does touch a nerve with her and she is convinced it's not possible to go out without a reaction . She became more enraged when I pointed out she wasn't full time and so she couldn't really make those claims with experiencing it.

    She is quiet passable until she does open her mouth not so much the tone as becoming heated over these issues , if you closed your eyes and listened to her she does come over a slight male bigot .

    I can never answer for certain what people truly think , I don't change my voice so whether the mother and daughter thought I was a woman or TG ( I prefer not to say crossdressed ) didn't really matter they were perfectly happy passing the time of day with me .

    Micki,
    True I can't say it never happens but I did ask a TS friend after this conversation when we were out having coffee , she is an honest open person and she told me I certainly didn't have a problem , she added , " Take a look around this crowded coffee shop we are being treated like two ladies having a natter with our coffee " .
    The real me ,no going back.

  9. #9
    Junior Member HelpMe,Rhonda's Avatar
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    Every time I've noticed someone in some kind of trans situation I've not said a word. They didn't 'pass' but also they didn't get bothered about it.

  10. #10
    Aspiring Member GretchenM's Avatar
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    In my experience, the behind the back snickers and laughs happen. I have seen it. And I have on occasion privately called out those who did laugh - A comment like "A little respect for our differences might be in order." They get it. Society is in transition. In a way, it is always in transition. And those who cling to out dated concepts and thinking are fighting to preserve what they view as a sacred standard and that does not include men looking and behaving like women. Society is beginning to make strides in recognizing that we are all different and sometimes very different. And that exists for an excellent reason in some people. But it still early in the transition and in some places cross gender behavior can get you killed. There is an old, politically rather demeaning saying about Native Americans that nevertheless kind of applies to the situation. "How can you tell a pioneer from a settler? The pioneers are the ones with the arrows in their back." Not nice by today's standards but in a twisted sense, it actually works, especially in some places.

  11. #11
    Platinum Member Teresa's Avatar
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    Gretchen ,
    It's a long time since I played " Cowboys and Indians " so thankfully not too many stray arrows passing my way but maybe you comments again show the differences between the US and the UK . Maybe it's why I was a little suprised by the reactions from this person .

    Rhonda ,
    I carefully avoid the passing question but as you say it no longer bothers me , I'm integrating fine in my community . It does strike me as odd sometimes having more problems from within the TG communtity .
    The real me ,no going back.

  12. #12
    Aspiring Member Eemz's Avatar
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    People don?t like having their beliefs challenged and will often react with anger when they have nothing else to counter with. It?s not an intellectual response or discussion it?s just fear and raw emotion. Perhaps in this case the thought process was more like if Teresa is right then the reasons I?m not dressing are not valid and that?s even scarier.

  13. #13
    Aspiring Member Pumped's Avatar
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    I think to say you can go out and never get a snicker is pretty closed minded, unless you pass. I have seen it and heard stories from straight people that have run into CD'ers. Like I mentioned earlier, nice to you face, but when you walk away the laughter and talk comes out.

    As long as you have a strong personality and can deal with it, or ignore it, fine, but to say it doesn't happen is having blinders on.

  14. #14
    Aspiring Member Eemz's Avatar
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    > it's impossible because people will be laughing and making fun behind our backs

    If she's going to care about what random people are doing when she's not there then yes it probably is impossible. But if that's how she approaches life then male mode can't be much fun either because there are people somewhere who are laughing at his height / weight / baldness / hairiness / car / house / ears / nose / feet / <insert body part here>

  15. #15
    Aspiring Member
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    Some people may have a LOT to lose if this side of them were found out. Case in point--my ex must've told every one she could have about my dressing. My brother's entire family has disowned me. Any one of them, or all of them could be dead and buried and I'd never know it. So NO, NOT EVERY ONE can afford your "luxury" of dressing when ever/where ever and saying "To Hell with all of you".
    Jon

  16. #16
    Junior Member Marianne S's Avatar
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    Hi again, Teresa, thanks for answering! I must say it strikes me as unusual for your friend to get so worked up over this issue. It's hard to understand what's bugging her so badly. Now if you'd never been out in public before, I can imagine that she might be concerned for you because she believes that doing so would be a disaster. But that's not the case, when you've already being going out successfully.

    Perhaps Eemz is right that she can't abide having her beliefs challenged. But I also wonder if jealousy plays a part. Perhaps your friend would like to be out in public just like you, but feels she can't for one reason or another, and feels resentful of those who are. Whatever it is, I hope you get it straightened out with her anyway!

  17. #17
    Senior Member Jean 103's Avatar
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    I would simply ask the person to spend the day with me. This is all it would take to prove your friend wrong.

    It's not about passing and all that, this is where the train jumps the track. It is about being a real person, it is really that simple.

    The acceptance I receive is off the charts. It is why after reading posts here I think I must live on a different planet.

    I have been basically attacked a few times. Someone sent pictures of me in a mini skirt to the owner of the company that I work for. I came out so I could deal with this kinda stuff.

    I have also found that I don't have to defend myself as my friends do it for me. They also give me feedback, so I do sometimes know what people are saying about me, mostly good.

    I really don't have any problems with being full time. I'm not going to let a couple A___H_____, dictate how I am going to live my life.

    You are not quite where I am but you are close enough to make this point, with your friend. Have the person follow you in guy mode . Although I don't think it is this simple with your friend, still it might open their eyes.

  18. #18
    Platinum Member Teresa's Avatar
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    Jean,
    As far as I'm aware this person only attends social groups otherwise she only goes out with her wife .

    I'd like to think I've landed on your planet , most of the time it does feel very much like that these days .

    It still feels odd that the only time I have to defend myself is on the forum or in my social groups, OH and my wife !!!
    The real me ,no going back.

  19. #19
    Silver Member Helen_Highwater's Avatar
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    Teresa

    Isn't this one of those cases were that little gremlin that sits on a shoulder and whispers in someone's ear "You'll be burned alive if you go out". "They're just around the corner waiting for you". Or is it the SO? She may be accepting but to a point. Your friend's dressing may come with limitations that have more to do with the SO's fears of social ridicule and shunning than her own thoughts.

    She of course is right in that there will be some who will snigger at our expense, we all know that. It's just a matter of perspective. For some one is too many.

    Let it rest, just get on with proving her wrong in our own sweet way.
    Who dares wears Get in, get out without being noticed

  20. #20
    Platinum Member Teresa's Avatar
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    Helen,
    I totally agree , I can let it rest but obvioulsy the other person does have a problem and maybe using the wife for excuses , I still wonder what sparked her off with me .
    The real me ,no going back.

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