If not now, when?

I’d been meaning (for some time) to investigate and write about how to grow good boobs, after all it’s what most of us want when we transition late in life and we’re told we’ll be lucky to get an ‘A’ cup. But then I spotted a comment on a blog I follow and felt I needed to explore my response.

Starting point was a response to I guess I’m going to go right to the obvious response here but: I think you should be yourself full time. Beyond the fear and the natural apprehension, is there a reason you aren’t right now? Even if there are practical reasons, maybe it’s worth the cost anyway?”

Now not one jot of what I am going to say is a response or comment, but her response got me thinking. In the past I’ve written about ‘coming out’. On Transgender Day of Visibility I wrote ” I am ‘out’ to very few people at present, but I wanted to mark this day by pledging that in 2017 my aim will be out to many.”

My sweet wife made a comment the other day to the effect that it had been some time since I had gone out ‘as Michele’. To the extent that she meant that I hadn’t gone out very clearly dressed female (i.e. in a skirt or dress), she was right. However as I pointed out, I dress like most women, that is in jeans and a tee/sweat shirt from a women’s store, every day.

But it is true, I am not out. Very few know that I ‘dress as a woman’ and none of those know that I am a woman (hell, I have challenges in stating that myself). To everyone else I am Tony, and yes, my hair may be getting longer and if they look carefully my jeans zip on the ‘female’ side.

So what stops me outing myself and going ‘full time’ now? What’s holding me back? Will I ever ‘go full time’? What do I mean by ‘going full time’? Is it never again being dressed in men’s clothes, being Michele from that day on? I don’t think it requires me to legally change my name, update my passport and medical records – that can all come later. But it does impact my sweet wife (who ‘loses’ a husband to gain a wife) and I’d need to tell my 93 year old mother-in-law. How will she respond? Probably quite well I suspect. The greatest challenge is telling certain other people – actually, all men, who I suspect will make fun of me (largely behind my back). I reckon most of the women I know will respond quite well.

I know I have a ‘perfectionist’ streak. That doesn’t mean that I will wait until I ‘pass’ consistently (I probably never will), but it does mean that I want what you see to be real. So, I’ve sold my wigs and am growing my hair out. It has come on well over the last 6 months . After 5 months on hormones I have the beginnings of boobs. I really hope I’ll have big enough ones so I don’t need silicone, though I don’t mind using a ‘chicken fillet’ on occasion to enhance what I get. It’s all really about authenticity, not faking it.

Rather than setting a target date, I am inclined to moving gradually towards others being used to seeing me dressing increasingly ‘feminine’. Wearing bolder ear-rings, brighter tops, more ‘feminine’ styles, but always clothes and shoes made for women. I have very few ‘male’ clothes now, my wardrobe is 90% ‘female’.

Being out in the company of women also helps ‘normalise’ stepping out of the house clearly ‘en femme’, handbag and all, so I need to find more opportunities to do that (maybe a transgender group around Oxford -is there one?).

So I guess my strategy can best be summarised as developing increasing androgyny until no one notices that I have transitioned.

Did you ‘come out’ quickly or did it take an age? How did you decide?

As always thank you for reading.

7 thoughts on “If not now, when?

  1. I can relate to a lot of what you wrote here, even though I’m coming from the other direction. I still have trouble calling myself a man, even to myself. My strategy was a lot like yours. Go slow and gradual, sneak into the transition so gradually that hardly anyone notices. At one point though my hormones jumped a bit and I had a sudden change in how I looked and that took me out of the stealth transition mode I was enjoying very unexpectedly. Some of that hesitation was for myself, some for my partner and mostly fear. Besides fear, there’s really no reason I don’t just live as myself these days full time, and at this point, I mostly do. Still, I’m adjusting to being seen as a man full time but it’s getting easier every day. I wish you luck on your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I determined that my full-time date will coincide with the United States’ National Coming Out Day, October 11th.

    I’ve been gradually moving into Debb since oh, about August 2015. That’s when I began HRT; basically that’s when I decided that at least a social transition was in order. Most of the time, I “get away” with wearing feminine clothing at work, although nothing too obvious — tops with that feminine cut, women’s shoes, etc. I wear ear-rings, necklaces, and bracelets, and my nails are always a nice shade of shiny pink coloring. My hair is groomed to look as feminine as possible.

    My therapist says I’ve already gone full-time, and I guess she’s mostly right, except for the odd times I must cross-dress (in a man’s shirt) at work. I’ve found that slowly phasing into this has made it so that people adjust and there are almost never questions.

    The one thing I worry about is .. how am I gonna make it sort of stand out, when I come in to work that first Debb day? .. Do I even need to make it obvious? I suppose I do, if only to tell everyone that I’ll be using the proper loo from now on.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. National Coming Out Day sounds an absolutely perfect opportunity, pity we don’t mark it in the UK. I like your stealth approach to introducing others to your transition, beautifully subtle, they’ll never notice the ‘tipping point’.

      I look forward to reading how your first Debb day goes. Good luck.

      Like

  3. You are obviously a very considerate and caring person. I wonder if age makes a difference when deciding to come out full time? I imagine one’s society makes a difference also.
    Thanks for posting.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And thank you for commenting. Though I guess I largely write for myself, it is always wonderful to receive a comment and feedback. Maybe age does make a difference; I cannot imagine how I might have handled this when younger. Now I want both to transition and to bring my family and friends with me. My wife and I have been together some 20+ years, I love her as much as I love life itself.

      Like

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