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Thread: Coming to terms with crossdressing

  1. #1
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    Coming to terms with crossdressing

    Hi again, I haven?t posted for a while but always lurking and reading as your stories have helped me hugely. Well I?ve recently come to some personal conclusions and I wish to share them with you as it may help others and I just want to share.

    So, after years of poor mental health and suffering a huge ?burnout? a few years ago, I now consider myself to be on the Autistic spectrum. Some may question the importance of a professional diagnosis but for me, for now, I?m comfortable just self identifying after heaps and heaps of research.

    What does this have to do with cross dressing? Well all my life I have been drawn to female attire and have had those troubling thoughts I guess most of us have; ?am I gay? Should I transition? This is wrong and I need to stop?. I now understand that dressing in female clothes is like the saying ?a change is as good as a rest? - my autism means I have to mask my behaviour to appear ?normal? and being masculine all the time is tiring so why not be feminine for a while.

    The feeling I get from wearing even the slightest feminine item is such a release of anxiety and I feel so comfortable. My body language has always been questionable and so walking, acting and holding myself in a female fashion is now something I embrace.

    Do I want to transition? Nope, I?m happy being male. But having the ability to turn the masculinity off is magical, I?m sure a few of you might be able to relate.


    As I side note, I went shopping at the weekend and treated myself in Victoria?s Secret, I now have a new love for finding female fragrances as I took advantage of their current 3 for 2 offer. I?m now sat at work (manly outdoor job) on my break sneaking a little sniff of my collar that I squirted a little perfume on this morning. It?s like a stress release!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member GretchenM's Avatar
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    I don't know much about autism but I do know that it is not particularly unusual for autistic people to show signs of transgenderism and gender reversal. Perhaps it goes with the discomfort they experience with social situations. So, if you are autistic then it follows that your ability to switch back and forth and experiencing joy in showing femininity as well as masculinity is perhaps your normal. The gender thing does not have to be one way or the other as so many think, but studies have shown that variability is more normal than rock steady consistency. It is just a question of how much variability you "naturally" have and how you address those shifts. I would suggest you get a professional diagnosis on the autism because there are a lot of things that look like autism that are not and only the pros can tell the difference and sometimes even they get fooled.

    Bottom line is that I see absolutely nothing "wrong" with your variability. In fact, I am a lot like you in many ways. But that does not mean that the cause of my variability is the same as yours. It is really a fallacy to assume that without good evidence that is the case. If behaving in the way you do helps you then go for it. Being comfortable in our own skin is a really important mission in our lives as well as living in accordance with what is comfortable. If you feel uncomfortable that is probably some kind of dysphoria (disturbance). So the solution is to find the way of behaving that makes you comfortable because that is most likely close to your current natural state where the gears turn smoothly. However, be aware that the current natural state can shift and what used to be comfortable isn't any more so you have to seek a new blend that is comfortable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueTempest View Post
    Hi again, I haven?t posted for a while but always lurking and reading as your stories have helped me hugely. Well I?ve recently come to some personal conclusions and I wish to share them with you as it may help others and I just want to share.

    So, after years of poor mental health and suffering a huge ?burnout? a few years ago, I now consider myself to be on the Autistic spectrum. Some may question the importance of a professional diagnosis but for me, for now, I?m comfortable just self identifying after heaps and heaps of research.

    What does this have to do with cross dressing? Well all my life I have been drawn to female attire and have had those troubling thoughts I guess most of us have; ?am I gay? Should I transition? This is wrong and I need to stop?. I now understand that dressing in female clothes is like the saying ?a change is as good as a rest? - my autism means I have to mask my behaviour to appear ?normal? and being masculine all the time is tiring so why not be feminine for a while.

    The feeling I get from wearing even the slightest feminine item is such a release of anxiety and I feel so comfortable. My body language has always been questionable and so walking, acting and holding myself in a female fashion is now something I embrace.

    Do I want to transition? Nope, I?m happy being male. But having the ability to turn the masculinity off is magical, I?m sure a few of you might be able to relate.


    As I side note, I went shopping at the weekend and treated myself in Victoria?s Secret, I now have a new love for finding female fragrances as I took advantage of their current 3 for 2 offer. I?m now sat at work (manly outdoor job) on my break sneaking a little sniff of my collar that I squirted a little perfume on this morning. It?s like a stress release!!
    Hi Blue Tempest. Have to say that your crossdressing story is so similar to my own. I too am on the autistic spectrum (Asperger's in my own case) which is ironic in a sense because my crossdressing led me to being diagnosed with Aspergers in 1996. I started CD 30 years ago when i was 13 (giving away my age now) and it was a beautiful floral dress without sleeves that i tried on for the first and it just felt so comfortable and right. I also have no desire to transition being happy as I am but would absolutely love to be able to go out wearing a skirt in public but just haven't had either the courage or the time and money as of yet. And yes, it's definately an incredible way to relieve stress and anxiety. I've been told that my own eye contact improves when i dress as well.

  4. #4
    Weirdest woman ever! docrobbysherry's Avatar
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    "Coming to terms with CDing", Blue T?

    U sound more like Alice looking down the rabbit hole. Be careful u don't fall in!
    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!

  5. #5
    I accept myself as is Gillian Gigs's Avatar
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    HI, BlueTempest, I"m an 'Aspie' as they say, having been diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome recently. I have read volumes on the subject, and I'm still seeing my psychiatrist on a regular basis to help me to finding better ways of doing things. It would be a good idea to find out for sure if, or where you are on the spectrum. Don't get down on yourself over it...it doesn't help, but harms and hinders. If I can help in any way, send me a private message.
    I like myself, regardless of the packaging that I may come in! It's what is on the inside of the package that counts!

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    Hello, BlueTempest. I have had a similar experience. I first discovered crossdressing and related things about 20 years ago and was diagnosed with autism 10 years ago.

    I've always been enamored by the female form, but not in the sexual attraction way. I've been considering my sexual orientation lot recently, but that's a different story. I love the idea of sometimes being feminine, but still also being a guy the rest of the time. It's been sort of an obsession of mine that I'm hoping to finally turn into a regular part of me now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GretchenM View Post
    I don't know much about autism but I do know that it is not particularly unusual for autistic people to show signs of transgenderism and gender reversal. Perhaps it goes with the discomfort they experience with social situations. So, if you are autistic then it follows that your ability to switch back and forth and experiencing joy in showing femininity as well as masculinity is perhaps your normal. The gender thing does not have to be one way or the other as so many think, but studies have shown that variability is more normal than rock steady consistency. It is just a question of how much variability you "naturally" have and how you address those shifts. I would suggest you get a professional diagnosis on the autism because there are a lot of things that look like autism that are not and only the pros can tell the difference and sometimes even they get fooled.

    Bottom line is that I see absolutely nothing "wrong" with your variability. In fact, I am a lot like you in many ways. But that does not mean that the cause of my variability is the same as yours. It is really a fallacy to assume that without good evidence that is the case. If behaving in the way you do helps you then go for it. Being comfortable in our own skin is a really important mission in our lives as well as living in accordance with what is comfortable. If you feel uncomfortable that is probably some kind of dysphoria (disturbance). So the solution is to find the way of behaving that makes you comfortable because that is most likely close to your current natural state where the gears turn smoothly. However, be aware that the current natural state can shift and what used to be comfortable isn't any more so you have to seek a new blend that is comfortable.
    I agree with this so much! For me, it feels like I am two people at one time, it just depends on who is physically there at that moment and that?s who I am. I am Olivia and not her right now. It feels natural to transform to me, I don?t know if I?m on the spectrum at all, never tested

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    Member Mermaiden's Avatar
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    Hope I don?t step on anyone?s toes, but I?m intrigued by the idea of autism spectrum not being diagnosed until adulthood. In my case, I showed almost no signs of crossdressing until in my late 30?s, and I think a lot others here came to crossdressing late. I?m not autistic but am interested in whether a late presentation of autism is real, and if it correlates with late presentation of autism.
    Do you think autism can reveal itself later in life, or just missed in early life?

  9. #9
    Senior Member TheHiddenMe's Avatar
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    We have a (now) 25 y/o son who dropped out of college a couple of years ago because of anxiety and other issues (some depression). He started therapy, and he was assessed (about this time last year) as being on the autistic spectrum (the people we have dealt with no longer refer to Aspergers, just that he is on the spectrum).

    In his case, the autistic tendencies show most in how he deals with people, and he tends to be very private. Other the last year, he seems to be improving, and my wife and I think the therapy has been a big help.

    For us, the diagnosis didn't mean a change in our son, but instead we had a better understanding of why he acts the ways he does. We have tried to change our way of dealing with me to better fit the diagnosis.

    One thing we have been told is that things such as fabrics can be irritating. Perhaps in the case of the OP, as she writes, wearing the clothes lessens the anxiety. That could be because of the autism, or it may be completely unrelated. But does that matter? If it helps, it helps.

    If there has been a diagnosis, then I assume you are still in therapy. Perhaps your desires to cross-dress should be a topic with your therapist. Again, from our perspective, the therapy has been useful for our son. And these days, you are not limited to your local area. My son's therapists have included one from Chicago and another from Australia (my wife is Australian, thus the connection).
    I'm Sun-Dee at Kandi's Land; read about my outings here:

    https://www.kandis-land.com/author/dee/

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mermaiden View Post
    Hope I don?t step on anyone?s toes, but I?m intrigued by the idea of autism spectrum not being diagnosed until adulthood. In my case, I showed almost no signs of crossdressing until in my late 30?s, and I think a lot others here came to crossdressing late. I?m not autistic but am interested in whether a late presentation of autism is real, and if it correlates with late presentation of autism.
    Do you think autism can reveal itself later in life, or just missed in early life?
    I was diagnosed when I was 22. It's safe to say that I was always autistic, but depending on your upbringing, it may get missed. In my case, my parents just thought I was quiet and really lazy when it came to schoolwork, but it never changed and I was always on the fringes. After I got put on academic probation in college for failing classes due to barely leaving my dorm, my parents finally wondered if something was up. It helped that my younger brother had been long diagnosed by that time. The connections were finally made. Being an oldest child and raised just before mental health and bullying started being taken seriously in society kind of made my childhood a wasted experiment.

    Autism is something you are born with that molds who you are. I am fortunate that I was born on the high-functioning part of the spectrum.

    As for how it relates to crossdressing, I know there are higher rates of LGBT within the population. The best explanation I have seen is that autistic people lack the social inhibitions that neurotypical people may have. They are who they are regardless of social stigma. It's good and bad because the negative emotions from people not accepting or understanding who you are can be extreme. Personally, I'd say I sometimes feel trapped inside my own head because I can't articulate what I feel like a "normal" person would, especially in real life.

    I first came across crossdressing and also female masking when I was 11 or 12 and it's now been 20 years and I've never tried to shake it. I have anxiety over how other people would handle it if it ever leaves the closet, but I know it's just part of who I am.

  11. #11
    Member Mermaiden's Avatar
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    Ashley, thanks for your clear answer. I wish you well. And for what it?s worth, I like the honesty of the lack of social inhibitions of autism. Sometimes I think we?d all be better off with more honesty and less judgment.

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    Member Kris Burton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mermaiden View Post
    I like the honesty of the lack of social inhibitions of autism. Sometimes I think we?d all be better off with more honesty and less judgment.
    Absolutely! In an earlier post, you mention that you came to CD late in life. So did I, again in my 30s, but my OWN inhibitions - subscribing to those social norms and stigmas - kept me from even admitting it to myself until recently. Now that I have, and been honest with myself and my SO, psychologically I've never felt better. So if as Ashley describes, the lack of social inhibitions is a part of the autistic profile, it's something we can all learn from. It would have helped me.
    Last edited by Kris Burton; 09-06-2021 at 07:34 AM.

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    Resident Polymath MarinaTwelve200's Avatar
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    I have been doing this since age 12----BUT I will NOT do it out in the open. I prefer to stay "Closeted", more or less. I do not consider it having "social inhibitions", but simply practicing GOOD COMMON SENSE.--------Folks already consider me a bit ODD and I do not need to add to it. As to those who DO CD publicly and openly,----- It takes a degree of bravery and ACCEPTANCE of the consequences and risks of such behavior, socially. If YOU wanna do it, fine, but I prefer not to have to deal with such matters. ------------To those who complain about their social treatment ( fortunately, not too many here) what did you expect? Most of society is very ignorant and prejudiced in such matters and can't differentiate between CD's Homosexuals and Transsexuals and often subscribe to very negative stereotypes about them.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Maid_Marion's Avatar
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    If irritating fabrics are an issue the ton of clothing styles and fabrics available to women may be of help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarinaTwelve200 View Post
    I have been doing this since age 12----BUT I will NOT do it out in the open. I prefer to stay "Closeted", more or less. I do not consider it having "social inhibitions", but simply practicing GOOD COMMON SENSE.--------Folks already consider me a bit ODD and I do not need to add to it. As to those who DO CD publicly and openly,----- It takes a degree of bravery and ACCEPTANCE of the consequences and risks of such behavior, socially. If YOU wanna do it, fine, but I prefer not to have to deal with such matters. ------------To those who complain about their social treatment ( fortunately, not too many here) what did you expect? Most of society is very ignorant and prejudiced in such matters and can't differentiate between CD's Homosexuals and Transsexuals and often subscribe to very negative stereotypes about them.
    Not trying to say it is good or bad, just that autistic people are more open to admitting to themselves being outside the norm. A lot of autistic folk would still be closeted given their struggles with social interaction. I know it sounds contradictory and I'm trying my best to word it, but personally I feel like being more open with myself puts me deeper in the closet in more ways than just crossdressing. On the higher-functioning end of the spectrum, you're well aware of your differences and it can feel pretty frustrating to know society won't get you, and that you'd fail to even tell them how to. I'm so relieved to be dressing again and hope it can release some of the anxiety like BlueTempest and Shirley mentioned.

  16. #16
    Junior Member Mackem Sue's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarinaTwelve200 View Post
    I have been doing this since age 12----BUT I will NOT do it out in the open. I prefer to stay "Closeted", more or less. I do not consider it having "social inhibitions", but simply practicing GOOD COMMON SENSE.--------Folks already consider me a bit ODD and I do not need to add to it. As to those who DO CD publicly and openly,----- It takes a degree of bravery and ACCEPTANCE of the consequences and risks of such behavior, socially. If YOU wanna do it, fine, but I prefer not to have to deal with such matters. ------------To those who complain about their social treatment ( fortunately, not too many here) what did you expect? Most of society is very ignorant and prejudiced in such matters and can't differentiate between CD's Homosexuals and Transsexuals and often subscribe to very negative stereotypes about them.
    Your position is very close to mine. You've summed up the issue in that if someone catches on you crossdress, they'll assume you're gay. If someone is gay, then fair enough, but I know I'm not. Being massively over educated and quite expressive at times, certain people have made their minds up about me even without knowing about the crossdressing. The area I live in isn't very liberal in its thinking (UK posters, think in terms of former red wall gammons; US posters think bible belt without the associated religion).

    Therefore it's a private thing for me. That said, I might consider linking up with a local support group if there was one close by, as long as I could change in situ for meet ups.

    Since I returned earlier this year, I've accepted that I am a crossdresser and it's part of me. If I'm home alone then while home I pretty much wear womens clothes all the time during times I know I'm not going to be bothered. I'll add I feel happier dressed in women's as opposed to men's clothes so if I get the chance, I dress, end of.

    Sue
    Last edited by Mackem Sue; 09-07-2021 at 07:31 PM.

  17. #17
    Member Lori Ann Westlake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mackem Sue View Post
    Being massively over educated and quite expressive at times, certain people have made their minds up about me even without knowing about the crossdressing. The area I live in isn't very liberal in its thinking (UK posters, think in terms of former red wall gammons; US posters think bible belt without the associated religion).
    It's pretty disappointing if people take a negative view of you for being educated or expressive. Depending on what it is you're "expressing," of course! What does this suggest about the "culture" up there on Wearside, and their attitude toward education, among other things?

    It's surprising what I learn on this board that has nothing to do with crossdressing "Red wall gammons"? That's a new one on me! Actually when it comes to the equivalent here in the U.S., as you said, it doesn't have to be about "religion."

    As for the main issue, I do appreciate what you and Marina are saying. I can well imagine that I too might crossdress freely in public, or among people I know or have worked with, IF crossdressing were considered just a normal variation in fashion styles. Like the choice between a suit and tie on the one hand and jeans and a T-shirt on the other. But regrettably that's not the case, and crossdressing can bring us funny glances at best, if not worse. Fortunately my own need to dress, in public especially, has not been as insistent as some, so I could get by with staying mostly in the closet.

    It would be nice to live in a totally accepting world, but given human nature, that's been mostly a pipe dream up until now. At least we live in advanced Western society, which is more grudgingly tolerant of these variations than any other major society I could think of. One that we'd want to live in, anyway.
    Last edited by char GG; 09-08-2021 at 11:03 AM. Reason: Considered derogatory term/please refrain from using it.

  18. #18
    Junior Member Mackem Sue's Avatar
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    Gammon is a term meaning an over vocal person who becomes annoyed at very little and thinks no-one's opinion matters unless it agrees with their own. Gammon is the colour their face becomes as they become increasingly annoyed.

    You can directly compare gammons in the UK with rednecks in the USA. I think the main trait is accepting certain dialogues without question.

    I guess being a well travelled crossdresser educated to Ph. D. level, I'm going to see the world a different way.

    Sue
    Last edited by Mackem Sue; 09-08-2021 at 06:47 PM. Reason: It's not necessary to quote the entire post directly before yours/political references

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    Thank you for all your wonderful replies and sharing your own experiences.

    To add, the comforting feel of feminine clothes is just a bonus on top of expressing female vibes. The feel of soft leggings, tights and slim fit T-shirt?s compressing my body is joyous. Bearing in mind I have used a weighted blanket for a couple of years now and it?s a similar feeling of just Ahhhh?.relax.

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