Monday, 10 July 2017

I'm Not Myself

I've been calling myself Genderfluid for just over a year now, at the time it seemed to describe the ever changing nature of how I felt about myself and my gender. However, i've recently come to the realisation that while how I feel about my gender changes on a regular basis, I don't think Genderfluid is the right way to describe it.

I've come to realise it's not necessarily that I feel more male some days and more female others, it's more like it's how much I don't like my current gender that changes from day to day. It's how bad I feel about myself that is 'fluid', and I don't really think that is what Genderfluid is meant to mean.

My internal monologue is always tuned to trans. As soon i'm not having to do anything or concentrate on anything, i'm thinking about the life I could be living if I was female. And even if I am busy doing something, it tries to muscle its way in and distract me as much as possible. As well as this I also can't get away from triggers that make me feel negatively about my gender, mainly women who are looking, behaving, doing things, living their lives in a way that I could picture myself if I was a woman. And these women are everywhere, there is no escape.

I don't see myself as a woman, don't feel like a woman, yet I aspire to be one. Being a male is also depressing, but this is how I see myself. 

Where does this leave me?

I thought I had reached a point where I was getting to be happy with being somewhere in the middle, but the way i've been feeling these last few months, that's clearly not the case.

Sigh.

I just don't know what to do with myself anymore.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Struggling

Im struggling at the moment. I feel like I need to vent, but this is the only place I feel like I can do it openly.

The GD is just kicking me really hard at the moment, really fucking hard, and it has been for weeks now if not longer. I hate it so much. It just feels like everything triggers it now, and I cant get away from it. I dont have an outlet for it that works, I dont know what I can do to calm it down. And the brave face ive been putting on cracks sometimes and I say things out loud that I dont mean to when im reacting to it.

When I get those moments where my mind is taken off it, its like it doesnt even exist. But I seem to be on a hair trigger with it now, and those clear moments dont last long before something triggers it and im back feeling miserable about it.

I want rid of this feeling. Im fed up of carrying on like this.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

When the gf is away, the girl comes out to play!

I can count on one hand the amount of times I have dressed up this year, but since my other half has gone to her parents and I treated myself the other night, I put the effort in and had a bit of a dress up today. I do love the top and the slippers are so comfy and warm as the fur goes all the way through the inside too!!!


Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Shopping

Last night after work I thought I would pop around some clothes shops to see if I could treat myself to something nice and girly this xmas. I was after some pyjamas mainly as I have no girly sleepwear at all but came home empty handed in that regard. I did however find a cute top in H&M and some (fake) fur slipper boots from Accessorize which were both in a sale. I would have been happy to buy more things but im really trying to be ruthless with what I buy. Ive bought a lot of clothes in the past which ive barely or never worn, and its a waste. Having a wardrobe full of stunning party dresses is great if you have parties to go to!

Ive been shopping in ladies shops before while dressed as a guy, and a lot of the time I just try and be confident and push through it, and on a few occasions even outing myself to the staff at a makeup counter. I didnt even need to one occasion but I was feeling brave! Sometimes though there is a niggling feeling or paranoia, and I get very self conscious of being the only guy in the shop, occasionally to the point where I have to turn around and leave.

Last night though I was absolutely fine, I had no issues walking around doing my thing, perhaps the cover of xmas helped. After a while of weaving through aisles of clothes I came to realise that other ladies in the shop were not paying any attention to me at all, they were just going about their business looking for something nice to wear. I also noticed I was not the only guy shopping solo in the ladies sections either, not only that but there were also groups of guys in there browsing and picking things out, presumably as presents for partners or family, but you never know! :)

Looking back I cant think of any time where ive been shopping where staff or other people have given me any impression that they knew who I was buying for (me!), apart from that one occasion last time I was in London where I was trying some ballet flats on and someone working there was watching what I was up to. But I was being pretty obvious then!

I guess the point of this post is to say not to worry too much if you decide to go shopping on your own. Guys buy clothes for the girls in their lives all the time, as long as you arent holding the dress up to yourself, im sure you will be fine. If you are worried, walk around with a list in your hand, have a pre-prepared excuse if you need to (xmas, birthday, etc), but other shoppers and staff wont bother you unless you give them an excuse to. And even if they do figure it out, does it really matter? The staff just want a sale, you might be the subject of their gossip for a bit but thats about it, and as for the other shoppers, who cares! If you are shopping locally though, obviously consider the chances of bumping into someone you know.

I usually shop online and its great if you are worried about being seen in ladies shops, but sometimes its nice to go out and actually see the clothes for real. I was in Topshop and saw a green one shoulder dress I had seen online which looked very pretty, but looked absolutely stunning seeing it for real. I wanted to buy it even though I would never be able to wear such a thing, and its on sale too. Damn it. I wish my hips were just a little bit bigger!


Sunday, 18 December 2016

Friendships Lost - This One Is On Me

Well after my last post about people just stopping replying to me, it seems I am guilty of unwittingly doing the same.

This hasnt been a great year. As you can probably tell by the lack of posts I havent exactly been up to much when it comes to this side of my life. My real life is partially to blame. I work long hours in a mentally intense job that means when I get downtime I often want to spend it like a vegetable. And then I havent exactly been feeling positive about myself for quite some time either, falling into old mental habits of self loathing and so on. So when the times come where I could dress up when the day actually comes, much like today, I just cant be bothered. Ive written about these on the blog before, so didnt want to bore anyone with the details again.

This then extends to my use of social media. Im not a heavy user at all, far from it, so any updates from me are very infrequent. Messages may also go unanswered for quite sometime, sometimes longer than I plan to as life gets in the way, but this is not intentional.

So this brings me to an old friend that I have wronged, hurt to the point that she has felt the need to go so far as to block me and remove me from whatever contact sites and social media we were connected on, and I didnt even notice until yesterday evening. Im not going to pretend I dont deserve it, I probably do, but it still hurts me to think that I have hurt her enough to make her feel that she needed to go this far.

We met up on a trans contact site years ago now and were drawn together by among other things, a mutual dislike of that site. She gave me her mobile number to use as a lifeline when I came out to my partner all those years ago, and she is the only person I have trusted to add as a friend on my real life Facebook. She is not anywhere near local, so we have not met up to now.

Over the years obviously circumstances change. We had kept in touch from time to time across various other sites, but that contact petered out, and this part is probably my fault. She last tried to get in touch a few months ago to give me some amazing news on a new direction her life was taking, but she sent me that message on a site I havent been active on for about 2 years now, but do occasionally check in on to pick up messages. She left a comment on my last post on here about a month ago expressing her disappointment, which I only came across last night. I originally replied to this, but then decided to remove it and post about it instead.

I have tried to contact her again, but it seems the damage is already done. And its my fault.

Ive had friends go quiet on me before, but im always conscious of the way this works for some people. That this is a second life that sometimes has to take a back seat to the one that pays the bills, that it is often operated in secret, or even that it can take a mental toll sometimes that can be difficult to process, and takes time to heal. As I said in my last post, I have a few friends that currently have me in this holding pattern, some for longer than others. And while it can be a little frustrating that this is the case, I understand that sometimes it cant be helped and if they do decide to pop back up again, we can just pick up where we left off. It seems I have done this to my friend too many times, and she has had enough.

Ive never claimed to be perfect, and I make a lot of mistakes all of the time. Im not innocent in this and feel terrible that its got to this point, and that she felt it was so bad it was better to just block me out entirely rather than give me an opportunity to explain myself or even give a well deserved apology. But there is nothing I can do about this now.

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Friendships Lost

When you are trying to find out about who you are and are also trying to reach and maintain a normality with this life we have, friends are an invaluable part of that process. Having someone there to talk to, to bounce ideas and thoughts off, and someone to confide in who is in a similar place to you is incredibly important. Otherwise your only sounding board is yourself, and if you are in a negative place this can only make things worse. Unfortunately it seems it can be incredibly difficult to maintain friendships as a part time girl, especially real life friends.

Its a frustratingly regular occurrence for friends I chat to online to suddenly disappear, with no warning, explanation or farewell. In some cases I can understand why I suppose, peoples circumstances can vary drastically and change suddenly. Something could have happened in their personal life, if they were trans in secret they could have been found out. Or it could even be that they just werent feeling driven to express their female side anymore and decided to try and be 100% masculine again. I have a few friends I suspect are in this holding pattern, and while I hope that their decision to disappear will help them get better, part of me also hopes they will return.

When these friends are people youve actually gone through the effort of meeting, it can be worse. When they are no longer an avatar or handful of photos, but a living, breathing person youve connected with face to face. I would hope this connection would drive people to stay in touch more, but still some people seem to just disappear. Part of the difficulty here is the majority of the people I chat to are not local, so if someone decides they want to disappear then thats it, they are gone completely.

There is a small local T friendly nightlife here, where I know people meet and have nights out dressed up, but I cant join in because its too local. Its quite frustrating knowing I could be connecting with people with relative ease and actually be able to be myself around them, but I cant in case I get outed. I try to make an effort with a few people who are local, but when I cant get involved in their social life in this way, it can feel difficult to keep it up. I try and arrange 'drab meets' on occasion where we meet for a drink after work and chat, but its just not the same. I have trans friends ive met, but never met as girls.

All of this is made all the more frustrating by the fact that I dont connect with people easily. I dont know if its me or them, but sometimes I find it so difficult to find a common ground with people because often you need more than trans issues to glue you together to someone, and my interests are far from normal. This means that when a friend that ive invested so much time and effort into suddenly disappears, it can be very disappointing.

There is one lost friend that gets to me more than anyone else though. Ive been chatting to this girl on and off now for years. I went on my first night out with her and also went on my first night out in London with her too, and ive told her things ive never told anyone else. But earlier this year she just stopped talking to me, and I dont know why. She hasnt disappeared, she is still registered on the contact site we use, and still logs in fairly regularly. Ive sent the occasional message since asking if she was ok or if I said something wrong, but ive had no reply from her. If I had done or said something wrong, then I would just like to know so I could apologise and if she still didnt want to speak to me, get some closure. But she says nothing.  I try to move on but I do miss her too.

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Makeup Lessons @ JECCA

Yesterday I finally got an appointment to see a local makeup artist Jessica at JECCA for some makeup lessons, and found the day incredibly useful. JECCA is specifically for trans people to go for makeup lessons, makeovers, and beauty treatments. Its not a 'dressing service' as such, but she is happy for people to take clothes with them and wigs, etc to see the full effect.

Jessica herself was really friendly, lovely to speak to, very patient with me even if I was rambling a bit (I tend to when a little nervous), and was just nice to be around. She operates JECCA from her family home, im not sure if this is normal a lot of the time but there was at least one other member off her family there, but we never crossed paths. As the changing room was separate to the makeover room, I wasnt sure what I would have said if id bumped into them dressed but with no wig or anything!

All the makeup ive been doing up to now has been based on what I was taught at Sophies about 4 or 5 years ago, which was great. Juliette who runs Sophies is fantastic and if you are around Bath its great to spend a day with her, but I hoped I would be able to pick up some new tips from Jessica as she is a properly trained makeup artist, who does weddings but can also do theatre makeup which is useful for those of us who have to cover things other girls dont. And I was right, this girl clearly knows her stuff.

I went for 2 makeup lessons which takes about 4 hours. I was given the option of how to spend this time, and I wanted to try and learn a daytime and evening look. She wanted to know if I had any looks in mind, maybe that id seen in photos or anything, but due to me not coming prepared and my lack of real makeup skill, we decided to keep the looks simple. We decided that she would apply the daytime look so I could watch and learn the basics, then with the evening we would do half and half.

As she went through, she was explaining the colours she was using and what brands, how much product to use, the brushes she was using and why, the technique and so on. She was also happy to listen to any questions I had as we went along, although it was a lot to take in. I was surprised that she does the eyes first, it was always one of the last things I did, but doing it that way makes sense as its easy to tidy up if you make mistakes. She also said that I dont really need to draw anything on my eyebrows as they are dark already, apart from maybe a little on the ends to define them a bit. I then learned a newer technique to cover my beard shadow which is a lot less heavy than the camouflage cream ive been using up to now (and I just bought a new tube!), how to use green colour correct to cover the red patches across my nose, and how much product to apply and what colours to use, as well as contouring which I had never done before. I also learned new ways to use blush, and do my eyebrows, eyeliner and eye shadow. I always found eye shadow difficult due to my hooded eyebrows, but she did a nice job!

I popped the wig on and then Jessica offered to take some photos of me. And, well, im not great at posing without seeing myself in the mirror, and I have only one or two specific angles of my face that work for me so the photos she tried to take were in my opinion not that great. Not because of her, but because im a terrible model. But, I was very happy with the look, it was very natural. In the end she left me for a few minutes while I took a load of selfies, I always feel awkward taking selfies, but its the only way I can see what my face is doing!

We then moved onto the evening makeup. Jessica touched up one half so it was more evening appropriate, then after taking off half my face, I was then faced with the task of reapplying it. The beard shadow was easy enough to cover, but I did find the eyes a little more difficult. I did botch the darker colour a little bit but with my hooded eyes it wasnt easy to see what I was doing. This is definitely something I need to practice. After this I took some more selfies while Jessica starting writing up some guides on what colours she used on each part of my face, along with a few tips and pointers. She was also happy to write up about what brushes she used that I didnt have that might be needed.

It turned out there was still an hour left, we had finished really early. So as earlier on we had talked about how I tried smokey eyes once and I felt I looked like id just been punched, she suggested for her to have a go and get one more look in before we finish. So once again I was back in the chair while she dabbed at my face, and at the end I was very impressed with how my eyes turned out. I dont think its a look im going to be able to replicate myself anytime soon, but maybe once ive mastered the other techniques I was taught, I might have to go back for a refresher on how to do them.

So after a few more selfies while Jessica was finishing writing up the things I would need from the first two looks, it was time to get changed and go. I had to make one last run across to the changing room without getting spotted (although I was assured that whoever was in the house would be staying out of the way) before packing my stuff. It seemed a shame and a waste after putting all that effort in to take it all off again. I wish I had somewhere to go after to put it to good use. Ah well, maybe another time.

So to summarise, if you are a Cardiff girl or in the vicinity, and you are looking for a makeover, makeup lessons or beauty treatments, I would definitely recommend making an appointment and popping in. I learned a lot while I was there, and I really enjoyed Jessicas company. I need an excuse to go again! Services on offer and prices are available on her website here: http://www.jecca.co/