Sometimes there is a blurred line between our desire to crossdress and our feelings about becoming a full time woman. Being a crossdresser is not a prelude to sexual reassignment surgery as only about 5% of the crossdressing population actually ever become fulltime women, with or without surgery. But there are many questions about “what is it like” This summary by Diane on Fetlife, is one of the best short synopsis’s that I’ve read
Here is a recap of her experience
Years of therapy where your guts are torn out and you cry a lot but end up feeling better. If you make it through this go to the next step.
Real life experience where you dress everyday everywhere, grocery store, shopping, wherever. Some are supportive but mis gendering jabs you often. You live 100% (or nearly) as a woman and try to figure out things like what’s a safe restroom to use and all of the other problems all women face like running hose and having a spare pair. You learn to dress like other women and not stand out. You learn how to do make up that is natural looking. Learn about wigs which means you probably waste some money on a bad one or two before getting it right.
Hair removal. Start years of electrolysis to remove beard and in my case monthly visits to get the rest of my body waxed. Electrolysis is $100/hour and I try to get 1-2 hours per week and even at that pace, it will be several years to clear my face. Painful hot electric needles in your face aren’t fun, especially around the lips. For 48 hours before electrolysis I can’t shave so I either have to hunker down at home or discretely move about with extra make up trying to cover my beard.
Finally start hormones which means finding a doctor and coming out to your doctor (as I did) and begin presenting as a woman even at the doctors office. Follow up blood tests every 3 months or so.
Some hormone changes are fast, like skin which softens almost immediately. Nipples become untouchable and breast area becomes sore but any real growth is very slow. After 7 months I am barely an A cup. Think of a girl in puberty because that is what I am. I am about 12 or 13 and I will be at least 16-18 before anything fully develops.
Make a financial plan for expensive surgeries in the future, Facial Feminization, Gender Confirmation Surgery and maybe breast implants.
During this whole process you are coming out to more and more people, some of whom will reject you as my wife did. So loss of friends and family will occur. If you come out at work you may lose your job. You will probably have to find a new living arrangement.
Dating pool drops to a small puddle so don’t expect to be in a relationship.
So, new place to live, hormones hopefully covered by insurance but even at that they are $60 month, $200 per month + on waxing, $4-600/month on electrolysis, new wardrobe and shoes to purchase. Nice quality human hair wig probably once a year, $500-1500. It adds up.
The plus, being myself for the first time in my life. I am happy and content with who I am. I don’t need others, I am happy with me. I love shopping for clothes and shoes and the best thing of all about being a woman is that I have a group of really close CIS Gender women who love me, protect me, help me, and treat me as if I am no different from them. I love my girlfriends and the close bond that women share.
Transitioning is the right thing for me but it is not fast, or easy, it is expensive, painful physically and emotionally and therefore should not be entered into without a lot of therapy, planning, and a support structure.
Tasi’s Note: For those that decide to brave the transition process, than I strongly recommend that you follow the TS Roadmap. There are of many, many videos on YouTube to describe the process and real life experiences of women that have taken these steps.