Managing your desires as a transvestite is not always easy. It’s a cocktail of highs and lows, excitement and fears, joy and angst, exploration and withdrawal, a world of paradoxes, confusions, thrills and often a degree of recklessness. Left unchecked the desire to dress and appear as a woman can potentially take over your life and possibly even lead to personal ruin. However, this need not be the case and can be easily avoided, although it does require a degree of management and compromise, but something that long term is sure worth engaging with.
Note from Tasi: This is the story of Helene Barclay. It was originally published in Issue 70 of Repartee and then subsequently republished in the new online version of Repartee under Personal Stories. It’s a powerful story about managing your desires and it should resonate throughout the trans community and with our wives and loved ones. I am republishing it again with permission from Helene and Martine of Repartee. I hope you enjoy the story and share it with others. Just a brief note on the use of the word “transvestite”. Helene is Scottish and the original article was published some time ago. The word is not offensive to our non-American readers.. Helene also has an active You Tube channel.that you should fine interesting
Transvestites are actually very different to each other, especially in coping and dealing with the internal desire to dress as a woman. At the extremes there are those who loathe their desire and either suppress it or dress as women very privately and then there are those who are completely open and dress as women with no inhibition and complete confidence venturing out into the world very happily presenting as a female. The only certainty we all share in common is we are men that like to wear women’s clothing.
Cross-dressing can give rise to certain emotions and experiences that as men we have concerns about. For example many in wider society consider men who dress up as women to be homosexual. Heterosexual cross-dressers are fearful of this as they love to become women yet are not attracted to men and do not feel comfortable having their sexuality questioned yet know they enjoy being feminine. It’s one of the many paradoxes faced by transvestites.
There are homosexual cross-dressers as well as bi-sexual and heterosexual; we cover the whole spectrum like any other social group. Cross-dressing is a desire that can bring a lot of reward and fulfillment and not something one can escape easily. It can be sexually very exciting and this can cause concerns with some transvestites as they feel bad for being aroused and deriving pleasure from it. Over time, the sexual aspects may fade, but they should be accepted as part of the whole experience if arousal does occur. After all, I think dressing up and trying to portray oneself as a woman is a very erotic thing to do.
Yet another cross-dressing paradox is a reckless desire to dress as a woman all of the time. I should add the caveat I am talking about transvestites and not transsexuals. My focus is on men who enjoy dressing up as women. Of course for some of us, I include myself here; there is a definite element of feeling transsexual but often not powerful enough to follow the path to transitioning into a woman through surgery and hormones.
Recklessness can increase as one cross-dresses more and more, to the point of self-destruction, if not contained. It is also very easy to become selfish when engaging in transvestite indulgences and focus only on your own desires.
I will admit I was excessive in my early cross-dressing period by continuously buying dresses, make-up, wigs, high heel shoes, perfumes and jewelry. My spending began to impact on the income I usually provided for my wife and family. I would see a dress and buy it; I would see a pair of shoes I adored and buy them. I began to think I should be dressed as a woman all day and thought of little else, it became a consuming self-obsessed pursuit and was completely selfish as I began to jeopardize the security of those whom I hold precious in my life. Yet, here I was diverting funds to my own desires at their expense. I am deeply ashamed by my actions and have deep regrets but I feel grateful I did come to my senses and stop the excesses. It was the moment when a shop assistant remarked on how I was buying a beautiful dress and she was sure my wife would love it. I felt suddenly ashamed as the dress was for me and it was far too expensive to be indulging in such a luxury when others relied upon me and I had thought I was committed to providing for them. I realized I was selfish and could ill-afford to be buying such clothing at the expense of the family I adore.
I was shaken by the experience and still burn inside at my actions and cringe at my behavior in those early days.
Another development was further recklessness in that I had this increasing desire to blurt out that I was a transvestite. For some reason I wanted to tell everyone I dressed up as a woman. Fortunately this was nipped in the bud by a dose of reality from a woman who helped shape my transvestite life into a more fulfilling and enjoyable pursuit. It was Lorraine Walker of the dressing service ‘Hide & Sleek’ in Fife, Scotland that put me on the road to getting the most enjoyment out of my desire to cross-dress without impacting on my family. Her first bit of advice when I mentioned my urge to tell the world I dressed up as a woman was to ask why? Why did people need to know? If someone has no need to know, then don’t tell them. She was right! I owe her more than I have ever expressed. That advice pulled me up and set me thinking about how I could enjoy being a transvestite but not cause further distress or jeopardy to my family and friends.
I realized the key to being a contented transvestite was to be grounded and to be realistic about it. To achieve that end required I manage the desire and that I accept compromises. I love my wife and my family and actually have a life I have no wish to lose. For a while I almost blew it and stood to lose a lot and cause great upset to loved ones. I also know I am a transvestite for life. I tried to suppress the desire for over twenty years and now know it is impossible. I am a transvestite, I will always be a transvestite. I am, I realize, a transvestite for life, I cannot escape that, it is a fundamental part of who I am.
I will freely admit I love to become a woman, I adore it, I feel so at home presenting myself as a female. I gain joy and contentment and always feel euphoric and truly exhilarated when I dress up as a woman. When I am cross-dressed I want to remain a woman forever, the emotional intoxication is powerful and I believe with all my being I must remain female forever as this is the real me. Yet … a few hours later that all-consuming emotional mindset is receding and I’m happy, not at all disappointed to return to being a man.
I have come to accept that these powerful moments I always experience are now part of being the transvestite I am. I can now lose myself in them when they occur as I know the course it will take. I gain a lot from freeing myself to embrace them when they occur without fear they will divert me from the life I have built and enjoy.
I now rarely get to cross-dress as my family commitments require more of my time but I love this as I know that life means more to me than my inner desire to be a woman. I do have to give up on opportunities I hoped to have to dress as a woman but I feel very fortunate that I do get to cross-dress at some point. I feel very lucky that my family tolerate this and I am allowed to shave my legs, chest and arms and pluck my eyebrows. Not many transvestites are able to do this without issue with partners and family. It is all part of the compromise, their concession to me.
I won’t deny my biggest selfish high in life always occurs when I dress up as my female alter ego Helene, for a few hours I am on the adventure of my life as to be a man who pretends to be a woman is an experience I find beyond compare.
I feel a lot more relaxed and confident and fulfilled since I began to manage my cross-dressing desires. They do occur; quite powerfully but often at times I know I cannot indulge so they have to be ignored. I still feel contented as I know I am able to dress as a woman at some point. It may not be right at the moment when I feel the urge to do so but it will happen, that is a good thing I find.
Compromise is probably the biggest thing that has increased my fun as a transvestite. I have a smaller more manageable female wardrobe now with classic, hopefully timeless styles, so I rarely buy any female clothes. The family finances are not threatened by my selfish actions any more and this makes me feel better about becoming Helene.
My point in telling you all of this is that I urge others to avoid becoming selfish; you can easily fall into such a scenario. Put family and loved ones first before anything involving ones desire to cross-dress. This ensures when you do cross-dress you are confident you are not impacting too greatly on people close to you. There is always a consequence from cross-dressing, but minimizing its effects is an aim worth pursuing.
I would also say it is worth accepting oneself for who you are rather than denying your own feelings. I am confident now with my own sexuality so that I can now become a woman in a much more confident way. I do enjoy being a woman so like to act as if I am female so I like being admired as a woman by men. Despite my vanity and enjoying the male attention when I’m Helene I know I am not homosexual, so I feel more confident as a person. I mention this as I used to have a lot of issues as I found it difficult to accept I could enjoy male attention when I felt I was heterosexual. I now feel it is part of being Helene, the female side of me. To me I am female when I dress as one so being admired by men is acceptable. Obviously deep down I know I’m a man so I know my boundaries. However, they are only my boundaries, I think sexuality is down to each individual and so your own feelings will be different to my own. Again, the point I am trying to make is accept yourself and don’t torture yourself about your sexuality.
Careful management of your transvestite activities will, I believe, result in a lot more fun, daring and adventure when you cross-dress, as you have set out your parameters and know you will be gaining from the activity whilst minimizing the effects it has on partners and family. I feel their considerations should always be factored in before engaging in any cross-dressing opportunities hence successfully managing your desires.