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Thread: Were we born thi way?

  1. #1
    Silver Member Sometimes Steffi's Avatar
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    Sep 2008
    Nation's Capital

    Were we born thi way?

    As many of you know, I have another thread going about does it ever go away.

    Some of the responses said, "I was born this way." So were we?

    I think some of us really were. There's a lot of stories about us girls "knowing" very young. There have also been posts that said something like, "I prayed every night to wake up as a girl, and I was disappointed every morning.

    There are others who got the desire a little later, typically around puberty. There is a sound scientific basis that the brain is "plastic", and can be retrained at certain points in like. There are also observations that children that learn a second language before they are 5 or 6 years old, can speak the language fluently and without an accent. Usually, if you learn a second language after 5 or 6, you can still learn to speak it fluently, but you'll probably always have an accent. This leads some to the conclusion that some language skills are learned early in life, and are difficult to impossible to re-learn later. My conclusion is that learning a language when you are very young encodes that ability into the hardware (or the firmware) of the brain. After the first 5 to 6 years, all other language skills are encoded into software, which is less capable than software.

    There are a few times when the brain is more plastic than others, and skills learned at those times are encoded into firmware. My recollection is that the key brain growth periods are birth to 5 years, sexual maturity (say 12 to 15 years old) and the final big growth period is on the verge of adulthood (say 18 to 20 y.o.)

    If you've read this far, here's my theory. When the brain is in its growth spurts (defined above) new capabilities can be encoded into firmware. One of those capabilities is developing the pleasure points. I think that the development of these pleasure pathways is how CDs develop a pleasure pathway to liking to be a girl. The flash for starting this could be something entirely random, like I would what it would feel like to try on sis's panties. If this turns out to be pleasurable, repeating this stimulus will build a pleasure pathway, like the Pavlov dog experiments. The other motivator could be something external, like you sis, your mom or you GF "makes" you wear girl's clothes, and that creates a very similar pathway.

    I don't have gender dysphoria, But it would seem like that would fall under the category of "born that way".

    Discuss, elaborate, or just comment on if some of this may fit your gender experience.
    Hi, I'm Steffi and I'm a crossdresser... And I accept and celebrate both sides of me. Or, maybe I'm gender fluid.

  2. #2
    Sort of a n00b Pixie_94's Avatar
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    Aug 2017
    Costa Rica
    I remember seeing that statement quite a few times on other forums, sometimes even on Yahoo Answers or anywhere else where people try to look for an origin or even why does this happen, yet statistics and surveys would be needed to get to something that may back it or debunk it, which yeah, I know would be complicated to do with what appears to be a very small part of the general population and depending on the country there would be many factors to take into account for the hypothesis.

    Now, as for something more from a personal experience and me being someone who has seen it as a "curse" most of the time after 2016, I can say that even though, the first traces of curiosity about trying anything feminine can be tracked to around when I was 7 or 10, there were no signs of it before, even though, I'm not sure if this is a phantom memory or what, but I feel like at some points in time not far from the ones mentioned, I sometimes felt like I would like to rather be a girl. Any time that appeared, it was very briefly. The rest of the time I was the nerdy boy who liked anything to do with science and a general insatiable curiosity.

    I hope this may be helpful information-wise.

  3. #3
    leggings junkie ellbee's Avatar
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    Aug 2016
    I'm one of those who had a very early beginning. Probably would have started even younger, had I had a similar-age sister.

    And had I been an only-child? I could have seen myself pushing for my mom to help out a tyke.

    No outside influence, per se. Was just... already there. Strong internal desire, even before I tried on my first GG-clothing.

    I was also shy/introverted. But I liked being friends with the other introverted cute boys & girls. Not only did I like the latter "romantically" (as best as one could at such a young age), but I also wanted them to see/treat me as one of their own. And maybe they sorta did, who knows. Regardless, kinda confusing, to be honest.

    I gave up trying to figure out the "why's" a long time ago. Fruitless, IMO. Just spinning one's wheels.

    And even if one did figure it out, for real? Then what?

    Anyway, for a decent percentage of us (including myself, as well as our TS-sisters, who I believe have a much stronger version of this), it's not even a psychological thing.

    Nope, goes deeper than that... It's on a "soul-level." For whatever reason, we were either specifically given, randomly assigned, or voluntarily chose, how we manifested our unique human expression here on earth.

    There's a lot we don't know. Though perhaps someday it will all make perfect sense, if we're lucky. And that's all I'll say about that.

  4. #4
    Member Kelli_cd's Avatar
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    Jun 2018
    North Texas
    I do remember having the "I wish I were a girl" thoughts and dreams when I was pre-puberty. I think puberty pushed those dreams aside. However, puberty was also when I discovered the pleasure nylon panties could bring.
    Now, decades later and considered a "senior", that inner girl is very much alive. She remains hidden within for a number of reasons. But I indulge her as much as I can.

  5. #5
    Banned Read only
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    Dec 2013
    I have no doubt some of us are wired differently at birth .

    I know some wives/partners argue that it's a good excuse but I do feel it's important to know where our trait comes from . Some members don't like the idea of being two parts of you but again it's exactly how some do feel , my gender counsellor considered how my Cding started and the dreams I was having at that time and concluded I had a strong female part that was trying to take over . I'm just so sorry it took so long to discover that was true .

    I know you keep asking these questions but at some point you just have to accept the inevitable that we are what we are so we have to find ways to comfortably live with these needs .

  6. #6
    Aspiring Member MonicaPVD's Avatar
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    Jul 2018
    New England
    I really appreciate the thoughtful comments on here. My entire life, going back as far as I can remember, I wanted to be a girl. I suppressed that for years and felt a lot of shame around CDing. I felt it was a fetish, a kink, something to be embarrassed by. As I grow older and thanks in great measure to interacting with all of you, I have grown to accept that I am an unrealized transwoman. I have also come to accept that I do not want to upend my life at this point to transition. I am OK with this. I have come to accept and love myself as I am today, right now. Everyone has such a different journey but ultimately we are all just trying to live happy, fulfilling lives before the clock strikes twelve.

  7. #7
    Member JennyMay's Avatar
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    Mar 2020
    East Anglia, in the UK
    I?m not sure if I was born this way. For the first 10:years of my life I had no idea what the difference was between boys and girls except that they wore different clothes. In the late 50?s and early 60?s the world was separated into the male realm and the female realm and the two rarely mixed, even for young children (my school had mixed classes but boys and girls playgrounds and entrances.)

    I was always fascinated by the mysteries of what seemed to me to be a forbidden realm, but this fascination felt transgressive. I was ashamed. I wanted to know what it felt like to be a girl. There was a bag of old clothes of my mothers including a girdle which was the first thing I tried on (in secret). I can?t remember how old I was but I would guess 7 or 8.

    I think things might have been different if I had had a sister (I have always wished I had one) but I only had an older brother. Strangely I don’t know what effect having a sister would have had on me. I think I would have thought, that’s what I want to to be, but I might be quite wrong.

    So, nature or nurture? I would guess a bit of each - an innate disposition which circumstance activated and developed.
    Last edited by JennyMay; 02-16-2021 at 07:15 AM.

  8. #8
    Gold Member Crissy 107's Avatar
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    Aug 2018
    Maryland, USA
    There has to be something in the way we were wired at a young age. I remember being 8 and wishing I was a girl, it was not until 11-12 that I started wearing my moms things, and I wore everything and just loved it. That footprint was there and yes looking back it was there to stay.
    It would be interesting to know how it occurred but it did and I am happy it will never go away.

  9. #9
    Aspiring Member SaraLin's Avatar
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    Jun 2017
    Central Fla.
    I can't remember a time when I didn't feel that I should have been born female. I can remember back as far as four or five years old. So Sexual/erotic/whatever stimulation wasn't part of what started it.

    I guess my brain was never very "plastic" in this regard - With almost no "programming" towards femininity, and LOTS of the opposite, I couldn't build a "normal boy" mindset.
    I tried to be what the world expected me to be, but it just never took.

    So - I'd have to conclude that for me at least, what I have is "hard coded" into my very soul.

  10. #10
    Silver Member Rogina B's Avatar
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    Mar 2007
    Ft Lauderdale Fl
    I had a great mother that supported my curiosity that started around six. "Boys can do what girls do and girls can do what boys do" was one of her beliefs. I was so lucky looking back. But why was I so obsessed with the feminine when it didn't seem other boys were?
    It SURE is my hair ! I have the receipt and the box it came in !

  11. #11
    Girliegirl Jillian Faith's Avatar
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    May 2010
    Short answer....Yes some of us were born this way.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Angela1954's Avatar
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    Feb 2015
    Everyone is different. I began wearing my mothers tights (now basically called leggings) when I was about 10 to 12. This was in the 60's when the thought of crossdressing, transition, etc. was in no way, shape, or form acceptable. So I continued doing the thinks boys and men do, but somewhere inside me was this curiosity and yearning for a more feminine experience. It was not until my wife and I separated and I lived alone that I began dressing more and more, finally progressing to going out in public as Angela. I think it was an evolutionary thing with me but the desire was always there, buried beneath the mores of the time. I think if I had told me mother she would have been supportive. She was an open minded person; but the era was simply not the right time.

  13. #13
    Resident Polymath MarinaTwelve200's Avatar
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    Jul 2005
    Of course it depends on WHY we crossdress. Some of us are born with "Transsexual tendencies" or "identify with" females. Others of us DISCOVER a "high" associated with female clothing or develop a fetish. I , more or less discovered an "Escape" from my maleness and myself. (as I don't identify as female)---so I could become, "another person" This escape from me is very relaxing and "unwinding".---AND it's also FUN "being pretty".

  14. #14
    Always been a GIRL. Michelle1955's Avatar
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    Nov 2017
    Texas Hill Country
    Born this way = YES for me , I was born with it period. Not a crossdresser,
    I have a strong female in my brain with some very little male.
    Now 65 years old and still would prefer a female body to go with the brain.
    Yes the feeling seems to increase with age.

    And the opportunity was available with my early childhood friends to dress up. Then we moved when I was eight. Urge never went away.

    Born 1955 as a lot of us on this forum, it was a very different time back then. Cross dressing was in the same category in my opinion as the ?Salem Witch Trails? when I learned about this in school. Ie in my opinion cross dressing was nearly a death sentence if you went out in public. I live in Texas, still is major problems in many areas / towns. So that is a major huddle for us. Parents did not talk about birds and the bees, but being around a ranch you had some understanding of what the animals did.

    I had no no sisters or brothers during this period of my life.
    Sears and JC penny catalogs came in the mail several times a year, and would go to the woman?s (mostly) and then girl section and hours for many days looking. While keeping one finger in the toy section in case my parents came into the room.

    Two others families lived across the street, their house was the go to houses for me to be at daily. Those 2 families had a total of 3 girls my ages and no boys lived on our block. So playing dress up and dolls at a toddler / young age was normal and their girls clothing was not an issue wearing. Ie I was not always the men in the house.

    Buy 5 or 6 the one of the girl and I switch underwear in her bedroom (she took her panties off and we traded. That did not last long because her mother said something to us from the other room. But I feel that was when all made perfect sense.

    Yes, I dreamed all the time to wake up a girl.
    At puberty was very hard, yes wanted to not have my penis, like some here wanted it cut off.
    Never heard about a sexual change operation until around 16 or 17, like this unheard of.

    Yes, I got my stash purged by my mother several times and some talking to.

    Yes, my wife knows we been married going on 42 years. But growing up back then it is still hard on her.
    Last edited by Michelle1955; 02-16-2021 at 09:31 AM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member GretchenM's Avatar
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    Dec 2016
    Denver, Colorado
    Steffi, I think you have presented something very close to what the science says and is also likely on the right track. Your description is right on and I praise you also for bringing up the matter of brain plasticity. It is a core concept of neuroscience. It is how we learn new things and how that new information is stored for reuse. All of that requires the ability of the brain to rewire itself as well as adapt to changing circumstances and conditions by altering the wiring. Brain plasticity is why we have the sense to not wander around outside in our birthday suits in an ice storm when the temperature is below zero degrees F. Your brain "knows" why you should not do that and it also prevents most people from doing that. But others with brain damage might well do that very thing.

    Plus the genetic information also reflects a biological cause. Studies of identical twins, especially twins that grow up in different families because of adoption show that if one is transgender to some degree the other twin will be as well. But it is not 100% so there are other factors from environment that play into the gender identity that forms. Or if gender reversal is a genetic predisposition then perhaps it was triggered in one twin and not in the other. The mechanism is still undiscovered but the fact that it comes from the configuration of the brain as determined by genetics and that configuration is adaptive through brain plasticity is fact.

    But to some, the gender expression motivation is not caused by a genetic source and yet brain plasticity still plays into it as a means to adapt to certain events in the person's experiences. Various traumas can set the brain into a frenzy of rewiring that can also prior behaviors to be very different.

    So there is not one explanation that fits all which brings us back to the conclusion that we are all different and therefore we are all equal in our differences. It is a bit of a paradox. We are all unique in our gender identities and expressions and that uniqueness creates equality through our differences.

  16. #16
    Platinum Member
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    Oct 2010
    Western Washington
    When my wife and I had "The Talk" I tried to come up with some sort of answer that made sense. She blew me out of the water. Finally, I had to say "I do not know why I do what I do!" End of all the BS. Sometimes I think people work backwards. They start with a conclusion and work backwards to support it. I wish I knew about brain plasticity when I had to take junior school French. That would have given me an excuse for the "D" I got. My brain was already wired to be an English speaker. Yes, there are many actors who have the ability to fall into roles playing parts with different accents. Plenty of Brits playing American roles sans accent.

    As to this transgender issue I ascribe to the notion, not proven, some are wired differently. My wife's female cousin has a child who is transitioning from female to male. All the sisters in the family say since she was a little child she felt she was a boy. My brother has a non-biological granddaughter who seems to be, from birth, drawn to male activities with nobody encouraging or discouraging her choices. Too early to see how that works out.

    Me? I had zero use for girls when I was a kid. My sister was born when I was twelve. I had no female cousins. There were a handful of girls my age that I was aware of. It was sports. I was crawling around in the dirt, climbing trees, and being sent to the principal's office much too often. Puberty came and something clicked. I suspect there was some sort of hormonal influence. Why the heck would a young teenage boy decide to wear his mother's clothing. The 1950's and 1960's were the years of suppression. If a male wore female clothing, society deemed him a homosexual. That caused a lot of confusion. A lot of self loathing. Disgust. Lack of self worth. All this was in direct contrast to my lusting after girls and Annette Funicello and other unobtainable female creatures. What was wrong with me?

    Yes, it is possible to "turn off" whatever drove me to wear women's clothing, and, even the thoughts of it. If you have read my posts over the years when I was in the military and trained and engaged in that very masculine activity of war, I had absolutely zero thoughts of wearing women's clothing. What ever kicked in, it was survival mode. It wasn't until I was out of "survival mode" that those thoughts started to creep into my mind. Not in the sense of wanting to cross dress, but, the distant thought that I had. Questioning, the why did I do that so long ago. Well, it did surface again. I cannot explain, "The Why." It just happened.

    If my brain was adapting like silly putty it would have been nice to it hardened rather than being so elastic. It would have prevented a lot of grief and conflict over the years.

  17. #17
    Exploring NEPA now Cheryl T's Avatar
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    Feb 2006
    Yes, I do believe that many of us are "born this way".
    I was one who began at 5 or 6 (it was a long time ago ). I remember falling asleep praying I would wake up a girl and the disappointment in the morning. I remember wishing so hard that my mother would pick out a girl's costume for me at Halloween. I longed to be Cinderella, a Princess, a ballerina or a Fairy with diaphanous wings. Alas that never happened and it wasn't till many years later that I finally got to dress as a female for Halloween.

    I feel all this is in my DNA. If not then perhaps it was influence of hormones as I lay in the womb. But I most certainly don't believe that this is by chance or some societal influence.
    Wear what makes you feel Confident !

  18. #18
    Junior Member
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    That's a very difficult question for me to answer. I did not have the urge to try on female clothing (my mother's nylons, in my case) until I entered puberty at age 11 or 12. But when I was much younger, we lived in an old house that had a very large walk-in closet that doubled as a playroom. At the age of 3-5 I would often play with my toys on the floor, close to where my mother often left her nylon stockings with her shoes. I would sometimes pick them up and fondle them, but not try them on. So was I acting out something that was always in me, or was I just responding to natural childhood curiosity?

  19. #19
    Silver Member Aunt Kelly's Avatar
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    Nov 2016
    Greater Houston
    I was born this way. It's the only explanation that makes sense.
    "Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but it will always get you the right ones."
    -- John Lennon

  20. #20
    Aspiring Member DianeT's Avatar
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    Feb 2017
    Steffie, I have no idea. This is one thing that we currently can't prove one way or another, so essentially a matter of opinion. And whatever the real explanation is, it would have no bearing on my dressing and wouldn't help me making any useful decisions in my life, so I'm not searching. I think people looking for a genetic cause do it for personal reasons, for example relieving some guilt (if it's genetic then what could you do anyway). I don't think we should feel guilty for the dressing, or for wanting to be a woman. Whether it's genetic or acquired, this what we are and we can't do anything about it. The only thing I feel guilt for is having lied to my wife. Because that, I could have avoided it (or at least told sooner).

    As for the rest of your demonstration I like it. But I would say this about your hardware and software analogy: I think it's a more fuzzy line between the two than what you describe. In particular, the things we do routinely in software will migrate to hardware eventually. Pavlov is an example of such ingrainment (is that even a word?). Because the brain re-wires itself constantly and optimizes its efficiency for a task that is repeated. But because brain plasticity at adulthood is way below what it used to be in childhood, it will migrate more slowly, and will never reconfigure the brain as much, making it a less efficient "implementation" (to keep speaking computer jargon).

    About the pleasure circuit, ReineD has mentioned it in several posts by talking of the reward system. We try female clothes, we like it, and gradually our sexual reward system gets trained to crave for wearing female attire instead of, say, mating with girls. The system can be reoriented at an early age, for example by dating girls (or guys) and learning to like it, but after some time has passed it's ingrained and can't be changed anymore. I hope I'm explaining this right, but the original is in the Ask a GG threads, just look for keywords "reward system".
    Last edited by DianeT; 02-16-2021 at 04:46 PM. Reason: Added link

  21. #21
    Weirdest woman ever! docrobbysherry's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
    Orange County, Calif.

    Exclamation No!

    I had ZERO gender issues until around age 50.

    I had many chances to try on women's things with a number of girl friends and a wife. So, why didn't I?

    Because like most regular men, IT NEVER OCCURRED TO ME before then!
    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!

  22. #22
    Senior Member NancySue's Avatar
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    Jun 2016
    Southern Illinois
    Interesting theory. After years of reading and research looking for answers, including a minor in motivational psychology, I?ve come to the unscientific conclusion that CDing is genetic. One never knows when genes will become active. For me it was at 5. I don?t recall why I wanted/needed to put on nylon stockings, I just knew it and the instant I did, I just knew it was the right thing. I?ve never had the desire to be a woman, just look like one. It?s still a mystery to me, but it?s never left. No complaints mind you.

  23. #23
    Junior Member Mackem Sue's Avatar
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    May 2019
    North East England
    Quote Originally Posted by docrobbysherry View Post
    I had ZERO gender issues until around age 50.

    I had many chances to try on women's things with a number of girl friends and a wife. So, why didn't I?

    Because like most regular men, IT NEVER OCCURRED TO ME before then!
    I totally agree. It never occurred to me until my mid-teens.

    I remember a strip poker computer game of all things and it got to the point where the computer-based lady opponent removed her stockings.

    I wondered what stockings would be like to wear. I had to settle for a pai of my mum's tights, but even so wow.

    A week later it was bottom half (skirt, tights, heels) and a week after that I managed a full cross-dress.

    It grabbed me in roughly weekly intervals after that and it's never stopped feeling good. Balance against that, the feeling a man should not be wearing women's clothes.

    Over a year ago, I ended up buying in clothes of my own. I finally got to try underslips (I'm currently wearing a black satin one under a black and white print dress) and stockings. I think my enjoyment of dressing then really took hold as I hit on brands of both that were just gorgeous to wear. Move frequency to every couple of days.

    A family mess followed by a purge, and here I am again. It just isn't going away

  24. #24
    Aspiring Member AnnieMac's Avatar
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    Dec 2013
    Yeah we were. I always liked girlie stuff as much as my boy activities. All good! Never felt too odd about it. But I had as many girl playmates as boy playmates growing up.

  25. #25
    Miss Judy Judy-Somthing's Avatar
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    Dec 2015
    I'm not a Cross-Dresser, I'm just going through a phase that started at 5!
    "This is ME" I am not CRAZY, I'm just a GUY who likes dresses!
    Since allot of men dress up in woman's clothing that makes it a manly thing to do!
    Much more fun than fishing.
    I do construction like house building and I love CD-ing, what's the difference?

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