Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Coming Out Update

So yesterday was harder than actually coming out to her. I was totally honest yesterday with what ive been up to, where ive been, and who with. She was not coping well and eventually went to see her best friend to help her talk through it. I was not too happy about this, in an ideal world I only really wanted her to know and it felt like I was loosing control. I was angry, frustrated and felt very alone for a lot of the day, particularly when she was with her friend. I ended up drinking for a lot of the day because I didnt know what else to do.

Well it turns out that when she came back she was a hell of a lot more accepting and had calmed down dramatically. Her friend set her head straight and we are now going to move forward slowly with her having a bit more of an open mind. I got a text shortly after from my gf's friend saying ive got no reason to be weird around her and if I need someone to talk to then she is there for me. She said she knows nothing about it apart from Eddie Izzard so ive arranged to meet her on Friday 1 on 1 to answer questions so we can clear the air while her partner and child arent there.

Needless to say ive never felt more close to my gf than I do now, I hope we can make this work.

Monday, 23 July 2012

It Is Done

So its done. I told her, she had a cry, I had a cry (only a little one mind), and were taking it from there. She understands that its not something I can help and its not going to go away, but cant get her head around why I do it. I cant really explain why either which doesnt help. Shes a little freaked out by the thought of it too but doesnt want to give up on us. At the same time if she cant come to terms with it she understands it might be the end of our relationship. Theres no animosity which is a bonus tbh, if we did split it would be amicable.

Shes not being bitter about it but is finding it difficult to cope because she cant speak to her best friend about it. Ive told her im happy for her to confide in her friend if she likes but if her friend breaks that confidence the fallout will affect both of us.

I havent been completely honest with my activities to date (no I havent met anyone dressed before) but I have told her I intend to socialise at some point with other TVs. She hasnt asked what my other name is yet and hasnt asked to see.

This is going to be an interesting week.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Today Is The Day

Well this is it. My gf comes back from holiday today and I plan to tell her about Aimee later on this evening. Ive got a letter all prepared (I will update one of the letters ive already got on here with the final draft soon) which outlines everything. Ive also got a photo ready just in case she wants to see, and ive specifically picked one which proves I do what I do but is of me not looking my best to make sure I dont play into any insecurities she may have that I am not aware of.

I thought I was fine with this but yesterday I was feeling extremely anxious and I am again this morning, im shit-scared! When I was speaking to my therapist the other day she asked if I was prepared if it went badly and told everyone, and I think I am. On the one hand I dont really care, truth be told ive never felt that close to anyone since moving here. Ive got plenty of friends who I get on with great but ive never felt like ive had friends like my best friends I grew up with back home, no-one particularly close. If they dont take it well then thats fine, they are people I could do without in my life. On the other hand I cant help but worry about what people think of me because of my low self esteem, and this is something which if it gets out will certainly change peoples perception of me sometimes in quite a negative way. And because my family, partner, friends and work colleagues are all interlinked, the word will literally get out to everyone in my life and there will be no escape.

I am aware of a lot of peoples preconceptions about why we do what we do, and I do have an opportunity to educate them about it, but its still going to be a massive upheaval and one that I am not looking forward to.

Heres hoping I dont chicken out.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Getting Help

So today is a day of more packages coming to my house full of clothes for me. Ive got friends who dont know about Aimee coming around shortly to make some tunes so im not able to dress up, and im hoping they leave early enough for me to be able to iron and pack my clothes ready for my makeover session tomorrow.

The biggest news is one of the therapists I emailed over the weekend sent me an email this morning inviting me in for an appointment this week. Ive asked for Thursday evening and I hope its still available by the time she gets my email. I dont know what to expect to be honest, at the moment ive been feeling a lot better than I have in recent times but I dont want to kid myself im better and I dont need it, who knows when it could strike again. Maybe the act of coming out to my gf will make me feel better, negating the need for these sessions. Well have to see. I might just go for one and see how it goes.

Monday, 16 July 2012

What Next

So this week is turning into a bit of an event for me. My gf is on holiday with her parents and that means im able to take the next steps ive wanted to take for so long:

Ive shaved my body from head (well neck) to toe. Its all gone, even the undercarriage. Heres a massive tip for you, dont use Veet for men, it is rubbish! Ive just tried a second go tonight and its just left loads of hairs everywhere. After giving up and going over again with my razor, other complications include tiny persistant hairs that the razor just cant seem to get all over the place but often barelly noticeable, shavers rash all over the place, hairs on my back I just cant reach and cuts all over the place. On the other hand, it feels amazing to be smooth!

Ive got some new boobs, they stick out about the same as my old ones but they are wider and as such look a lot fuller. I think they look a lot more natural than my old ones and im very happy with them.

Ive got loads more new clothes including my first LBD!

Ive arranged to go to a dressing service. Sophies in Bath to be exact, ive heard good things and after speaking to Juliette it sounds like im going to learn a lot. Its cost me more than I would have liked but what the hey I thought why spare expense. Im hopefully going to learn some things that will do me well so it should be money well spent.

Ive arranged to meet quite a few new trannys. Im not expecting me to get on with all of them but hey I dont know if I dont try.

Ive started emailing some local counselors/therapists to try and discuss my issues with them. Im hoping to get a session in this week. Im really bad for trying to self diagnose my state of mind, I really need to go in there with a clear head and let them do the figuring out,

Im still planning on sticking to the countdown and tell my gf when she gets back, im going to have to tell her something ot explain the loss of my hair! Ive got some websites and support groups for partners of trans girls to hand but I doubt it will be enough. I honestly think that countdown is representative of how long is left of our relationship.

Friday, 13 July 2012

Coming Out Letter - Final Draft

<Insert Name>,

Its very important that you take the time to read this letter fully before asking any questions or forming your own conclusions. I want you to remember that opening up like this is an extremely difficult thing for me to do and im doing so in the strictest confidence, but I love you very much and I need to explain a few things to you. If you dont think this is something your not going to be able to chat to xxxxx, xxxx, xxxxxx or anyone else about then stop reading now.

Ive decided to write this as a letter because ive got some things I need to get off my chest, and I fear that by trying to talk to you about it I might not get my points across the way I want to and you may misinterpret what im trying to say. I want to explain to you where I am at mentally and also share with you something extremely personal to me that you do not know about, something which will probably change the way that you see me as a person. Im very unhappy with my life as it currently stands. Im unhappy with my job, with my social life, and especially with my current state of mind. You are the only good thing to happen to me in my life so far and im aware this has been and will continue to affect you too. I need you to understand what im going through and why this is the case so I can try and move forward and make the changes needed to try and get myself back on track. Im not going to be able to move on until ive admitted to myself, and also you what is going on inside my head.

First off I need to tell you that I hate myself. Not in a 'I want to end it all' slash my wrists kind of way, but in a contemplative but also intense 'I wish I was someone else' kind of way. I hated my life up to the point I moved here and was constantly the target for bullies because of my name and size, and after so many years of this it has had a knock on effect on my personality that has been difficult to shake over the years. I thought I was doing well since moving here but over the past few years ive found myself sinking back into my old way of thinking again. Currently I have no self esteem, no confidence, and feel like I am socially awkward to the point of hating going to social gatherings for fear of making a fool out of myself in some way, which more often than not I do.

Mistakes I have made however big or small I replay in my head again and again to the point where at least several times a day I curse and swear at myself out loud or get sucked into it in my head. If a recent incident was especially embarrassing I cant shake that embarrassed feeling for days or even weeks. Youve caught me shouting out around the house several times, but ive played it off as me saying something else. Also remember when we were on the tube coming back from London and you asked me what I was doing because it looked like I was talking to myself, that was one of those times where I was in a world of my own replaying an incident in my head. When I havent done anything recent I end up having little flashbacks of a random something that usually happened many years ago and still troubles me so I still beat myself up about it. I cant help it, and it feels like its never ending.
Often these could be extremely minor incidents but they play heavily on my mind, and because of my self esteem this gets to me a lot more than it should. The knock on effect of this is that I have difficulty motivating myself to do anything including socialising, and when i do im hardly the life and soul of the party. I dont get involved with group discussions, and when I do I end up stammering most of the time. I hate meeting new people and often find it difficult to think of anything to say no matter how interesting they are, its even worse when its a group of new people.

I have no motivation at all to do anything to get myself out of the hole I find myself in when it comes to my health and employment. I subconsciously seem to deliberately sabotage any way of finding happiness because I lack the motivation or the will to try and make myself a better person. I suppose if I hate myself so much why should I bother trying to make my life happier.

The next thing I want to tell you is something ive been struggling with for many, many years. I used to dabble in it when I lived back home and tried to put it behind me when I first moved here, I was successful for a time but it never goes away. When I try to ignore it eventually it becomes compulsive, it eats at me till I reach a point I cant think of anything else and I cant ignore it anymore. Its also something that will probably be with me for the rest of my life so I have to come to terms with it. You have to understand that when I cant express myself in this way or I think about how different my life could be if I could, it can really get me down. The depression ive been suffering with on and off over the past year or so has been largely because of work, but also partly because of my self esteem and confidence issue, and also partly caused by the need to express myself the way I want to but not being able to due to the stigma attached to it, and what you might think of me. Dont get me wrong, work was the catalyst and the main cause of when I snapped, but they have all played their part.

So around July last year I realised I didnt want this to turn into a regret to go with everything else that bothers me, I decided to try and explore it to see if letting myself get into it properly for a while would either get it out of my system for good or make me realise I would need to accommodate this in my life. I gave myself time to figure it out after which I would make a final decision about what choice to make, and this is why I have written this letter to you. As it turns out this is something that is a much bigger part of me as my music is, or art is to you. As such it is something I can no longer ignore.

This is incredibly difficult for me to admit, not only to you but to myself, but here goes. Basically I have a need to express my feminine side sometimes, and when I do I feel happier and more relaxed about myself than I do at any other time. Its something I need to express more than ive been able to so far and as my partner its only fair that you know about this. This does not mean I suddenly fancy men, want to take hormones or have surgery, and you should know there are many men around the country who also live with this successfully with their partners too. You have to understand that this is part of the man you fell in love with, its always been part of how I think and act and this doesn't change when I dress either, but it isnt going away so we are going to have to find a way to accommodate this into our lives. Im not expecting any participation from you in this, id happily keep this as something I do without you but I need to tell you about it because I dont want to keep secrets from you. However whether you are a part of it or not im not going to be able to ignore this anymore.
Its difficult to say why I do this, believe me ive spent the last year trying to figure it out myself but what I can tell you is that when im dressed up I feel a lot better about myself than at any other time. Maybe its the escapism, maybe its a defense mechanism I developed to deal with the stuff I had to deal with when I was younger. I dont know.
The above revelation however is a double edged sword. I find happiness when dressed, but at the same time I hate myself for being what i am. I really wish I was normal, I really really wish I was normal. A normal bloke who likes drinking and football, and someone who isnt putting you through what your going through now. But I cant ignore it, ive buried it for too long and I cant hide it anymore. It probably goes without saying that this is very personal to me, and im trusting you with this because I love you very much and this is something that has been affecting us both. Very few people have ever known about this and it is something that I dont intend to share with many people, in fact it is something I only want to do at home or well out of the way in another town.  Weve been together for a long time and I love you very much, but I need to explore this and find out how deep the rabbit hole goes because to be honest its driving me mad not being able to and my depression and anxiety is only going to get worse.

At this point you should understand why I need to make some serious changes to my lifestyle and the scale of the problems I have been dealing with emotionally. I chose a therapist who works in all the areas that have been affecting me, so is aware of all of the above and this is a large part of the ongoing conversation we will be having. If you need to speak to someone about how you feel or if you are unsure what to do or just want more information about any of the above, tell me and I can point you in the direction of places to go for information and support, including websites, forums and probably even phone numbers of people who have also dealt with this issue with their partners.

Id just like to sign off by saying I love you very much and im sorry I havent brought this up with you before, but it is something that I have only recently accepted about myself and I wanted to be sure before I told you about it.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Counting Down

So my deadline for telling the gf runs out soon, I plan to tell her when she comes back from holiday with her parents the week after next. It really isnt long to go and every time I think about it I feel more and more anxious. I can feel my chest pulsing or fluttering and I get light headed about it. I know that the majority of what ive been feeling has been because of work, but I need to remember why I need to come clean about this too.

I need to remember that before I started getting depressed I was obsessed by dressing almost all of the time. Everytime I saw a good looking girl in the street I would certainly feel attracted to her, but I would also feel a mixture of admiration, envy and jealousy about what what she was wearing and how she looked. If I saw a dress I liked in a shop window I would not be able to stop thinking about it. At times it was obsessive and a nightmare to control. As much as ive got mixed feelings about the cause of my depression this is still something I need to admit to myself and allow space to breathe.

Because of this I need to realise that even if I get the depression under control I would still be back to how I was before, living a lie behind my gfs back.

Monday, 9 July 2012

Contemplating My Next Move

My gf is in work all day today so im sat here at my laptop dressed up in a red stripey dress, leggings and wedges contemplating my next moves and where they could take me. When I started this last year I gave myself a deadline of 12 months to either get it out of my system or take steps to do this properly and I intend to stick to it. Since ive decided this is part of who I am ive now got to decide what to do next. Ive decided that the week after next when she gets back from her holiday will be when I will break the news, what news this will be is what I am trying to figure out.

I have no intention of coming out to the world with what I am, this is not something which will ever be full time for me. I like having man time, but similarly I like having time to let my feminine side out as well. As Lisa Johanna put it so brilliantly on her blog: "I was born male and I'll die male, with interludes of glamorous femininity along the way". Because of this there is no real need to come out to everyone in my life, but I think at the very least my gf has a right to know.

On the one hand coming clean is the main option I seem to be working towards at the moment but it also could potentially have the messiest outcome. Knowing what im like in conversation the decision to do this by letter seems the best way to approach this. That way I know all the main points I want to get across are in there, and then I will be there to answer the many questions shes likely to have afterwards. However the possible outcome of this is that she will reject me, split up with me, tell all our friends and 'out me', which is not what I want. To be honest from conversations ive had with her where ive tried to test the water, I think this is likely what will happen. I will only get one shot at this and if it goes badly my life will get turned upside down. To be honest it probably will anyway!

On the other hand just ending it with her is also an option I am considering. This way I will still get to keep this a secret on my terms, she will never know, and then I get to explore this the way I want to with no-one to answer to. But then I will be losing the girl ive spent the last 8-9 years with and ill never know what could have been. Part of the reason im considering this option is because after 8-9 years with her ive grown comfortable with her which is no bad thing, we still get on as well as we did when we met but im not sure if I still love her in the way she does me. Ive grown so used to hiding my feelings that im finding it difficult to tell what is what.

As ive been typing this I have been thinking, would it be so bad to be outed to my friends? To be honest I know some of them would probably never talk to me again, but then at the same time I dont think others would care and it would show who actually values me as a friend.

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Something To Look Forward to

So in a weeks time my gf will be going on holiday for 8-9 days, and I plan to continue to be off work during that time. This means im going to be putting into action the next part of my plan and also spend a lot of time as Aimee! This is probably going to cause some awkward explanations to my gf when she gets back but it needs to be done.

First off I plan to get rid of all of my body hair. Now I usually dress to accommodate my hair and make sure that I get rid of what I can (which isnt much) and then cover the rest, but it really doesnt help me feel the part. Im really quite excited about this and ive been looking forward to it for some time. Next I plan to get a makeover, not from a department store or anything like that, but hopefully from a local TG friendly individual who can help me sort out colours and also talk me through the process. There is someone in particular I will be getting in touch with shortly to arrange this. Then I will be buying my own makeup and frantically practicing that week before my gf gets back. Hopefully I will get some photos done too so ill finally got some nice pics which will show me complete.

Since I have time off I will also hopefully be trying to arrange some meets with other TG's. Apart from one person the other people I have been chatting to so far are new to me and this is quite scary. Im not a great social person, if someone doesnt have the same interests as me (and I dont have normal interests) I find it quite difficult to do simple things like keep a conversation going. I suppose my self esteem and confidence issues plays a part in this, im just not a great conversationalist. But im forcing myself to do this, I need an outlet for this side of my life. I need to share it with people because dressing up for me and my camera is fun but only for about 10 minutes and it gets very very lonely.

Friday, 6 July 2012

I think It Might Be Easier

Ive been working myself up today and getting quite anxious thinking about where im at currently. Im seriously thinking of just ending it with my gf, it would make life so much easier for me and it would give me far more freedom than if I came clean about being a T-Girl. Ive got things I would want to try that I wouldnt be able to while im with her. At the same time weve been together 8-9 years while barely arguing. We get on very well. Its a long time to throw away.

I really dont know what to do, im totally lost.

I Dont Want To Be A Crossdresser

I get a few hits to this blog for people searching for terms like 'I dont want to be a crossdresser' and 'I cant decide if I want to be a crossdresser', and if you have come across this blog looking for answers to this very question then this post is just for you.

Being Trans* whether that is as a Crossdresser, Transvestite, Transgender, Transexual, Genderqueer, something else or something in between, or even if your not sure where you fit on the gender spectrum, is not a choice that we have. There is something hardwired inside your brain that means you have a need to express a feminine part of your personality to some degree, and how much will depend on your individual circumstances. Trying to deny or suppress your feelings is not healthy and will only lead to more intense issues further down the line. I spent many years trying to deny this side of me and slowly it started becoming a massive regret which I was obsessing over. This contributed to my depression, and to a point, it still does a little now. You need to learn to accept it and figure out how far you need to go to be happy, and you will not be able to figure it out without pushing some boundaries. There will be some challenges along the way, and you might surprise yourself when you figure out what this means to you, but the journey will be worth it.

You dont want to be in a position where you regret this years down the line, we are only here once and we are all different. Experiment now, get out there and try it out while you can look good doing it. You dont want to be 60 years old looking in a mirror wearing a dress far too short and revealing, wishing you had tried this out sooner. Im only tackling this at 30 years of age and im really regretting not doing it earlier in my life when I would have looked far better (and maybe dare I say it, convincing) and been able to enjoy it more. I often think about where my life would be now if I had accepted this many years ago, I think I would be a lot happier with myself now, thats for sure. As it is though, im now very happy with having this other side to me in my life. I love dressing up, I love how makeup changes the way my face looks, I feel so much happier with myself when I can have my feminine moments, and I would not change it for the world.

Take the time to explore it, maybe even get in touch with other people about it. Make use of the internet and the various Trans* contact sites and support forums that are out there, get chatting to people, arrange to meet them or go on a night out with them, or find out where your local support groups are and make a trip to one. If you are really worried or confused then go and see a counsellor/therapist. People do need help from time to time and there is no stigma attached for trying to sort yourself out. If you decide to go and see one make sure they deal with Transgender issues as someone who is not trained in the specifics of this will not be able to help you.

Theres nothing wrong about expressing your female side, and talking to other people in the same situation as yourself will help you realise this, and maybe even help you realise how far you need to go. If you can meet someone face to face that would be best but even chatting online can help. If you are really unsure, you can even comment on this post if you like and I will reply to you.

Take care,

Aimee x


p.s. I rewrote this post on 17/02/13 because of the search hits I was getting to it, I decided to do a search using the same search term used to find this blog, and found that there are a lot of blogs and sites that want to try and 'fix' you, usually by following religion or some other far-fetched method. As this was the only search hit that comes from a blog which is 'pro-TG', I figured I would amend this post to something which would encourage visitors to explore this side of them since the original post was written at a time when i was still in turmoil and depressed, not long before coming out to my partner. I have decided to keep the original post and here it is below, but please bear in mind I was not in a good place at the time:

Just a quick post about people searching for answers. I can see that some of the search terms used to find this blog were 'I dont want to be a crossdresser' and 'I cant decide if I want to be a crossdresser', and I just wanted to say a quick something about that.

To be honest you dont get a choice im afraid. As much as I enjoy it I dont want to be a crossdresser and ive spent many years trying hard not to give in to it, but the longer you try and leave it and ignore it the stronger it comes back. It just plays in your head again and again and again until you give in. The reasons why we do this are varied and will be down to the individual but you might as well accept now that this is part of who you are. You dont want to end up like me. Im turning 30 tomorrow and im regretting not making this a part of my life years sooner. On the one hand I really enjoy getting dressed up and chilling out en femme, but then ive got a gf who ive lived with for years and to 'come out' is going to shake up and probably devastate both our lives, plus im considering therapy to try and get my head round it but its something ive got to do.


So once again im spending my day sat in front of my laptop with a few TG social networks im registered to, my email and my Flickr account open in front of me. Ive got some music on really loud as well while im sat here. My gf has gone out for a few hours but I dare not dress in case she comes back, so im just sat here staring at the screen waiting for something to happen and im feeling down again. This seems to have turned into my routine now, im not being productive. Not looking for work, not making music, not even playing my console. Nothing. Just sat here waiting for someone in the outside world to send me a message or comment on one of my pics or something.

I had difficulty sleeping last night. When I created my last post I also made a slightly edited version of it and posted it on one of the TG social networks im part of and regretted doing so almost immediately. After getting into a misplaced argument about it last night where I got a bit defensive over something that I thought was aimed at said post I took it down. It wasnt because of the argument itself, I was clearly not comfortable with having that kind of personal information up for people I socialise with (albeit online but still) and could potentially meet in the future. Im not one to open up like that with people I know, thats why this blog is here. So because of my self esteem issues ive been worrying about what people on that site think of me now, whether im some sort of head case or something.

So ive been depressed again today and im trying to figure out why as there have been a couple of things that could be the reason. Number 1 is what I explained above. The second is I had a welfare meeting today with one of my line managers from work plus someone from HR about my continuing absence from work. I have been off for 2 months with work related stress, however ive recently come to the realisation it may not entirely by work related but work is certainly a contributor to my current state of mind. They come to my house on a monthly basis and chat to me and try to persuade me to go back and they do make a very good case, but to be honest I dont want to go back. That place stressed me to the point where I snapped, I was in a dark place before I left. I should have spent these 2 months looking for work but I have not been motivated to do so, ive fallen into this bloody routine!

Number 3 is my gf is really beginning to get on my nerves but I dont know if this is just down to me being down anyway or if im getting fed up of being in a relationship with her. Weve been together about 9 years and in that time we have rarely fought, we give each other a lot of leeway and freedom to do the things we want and it works very well. On the flip side im getting pissed off with having to live to her rules in the house. It sounds petty but her expectations with cleaning and stuff is really beginning to grate, or im getting fed up with having to take into account shes vegetarian when im not when it comes to eating and especially eating out. Or theres when she decides to speak to her family for an hour almost every night on the phone but she does it in the living room when im trying to watch telly, fuck off to another room! I think ive recently come to the realisation I might be happier just doing my own thing without worrying about this and that when the gf comes back or whatever, being around people 24/7 is irritating me.

So when I go and see my GP next week im going to ask to get referred to a therapist, im not going to bring up the tranny issues in case they try to refer me to a gender specialist. And to be honest after the last post I dont think that is the root cause of my issues.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Finding Myself

For once this isnt a post im going to type while in the depths of a depressive spell, so im hoping it will be a lot more coherent and useful. Over the past few days ive been trying to do some soul searching. I need to know who I am, what I am, what crossdressing/transvestism means to me, how far I want to take it, and what influences it will have on my life in the future. Im having great difficulty interpreting my feelings and am extremely indecisive at the best of times but I need to figure this out for my own sanity.

My wardrobe continues to expand. Over the past week I have bought a dress, 2 playsuits, 2 skirts, a pair of wedges and some jewellery. Not bad considering ive been off work for 2 months, although it has gone on my credit card! When I was trying on my new dress I had a massive smile on my face and actually couldnt stop myself commenting out loud how much I loved the outfit I was wearing. Clearly this is something which makes me very happy and thinking back to last year when I was trying not to dress but caved in, it is also something which is not going to go away.

Why do I do this? Escapism? Hormones? Theres a girl in my head somewhere? Am I just a freak?

I think back to when I was young and I was mercilessly bullied inside and outside of school. My small stature and surname which was easily twisted into something highly offensive meant I was an extremely easy target for bullies throughout my young life, this includes an incident where someone thought it would be funny to spray hydrochloric acid in my face. This eventually led to me leaving home in my early 20's and moving halfway across the country to get a fresh start. However all the insecurities, social awkwardness, destroyed confidence and low/no self esteem has haunted me ever since.

Over the last few years it has got worse. It seems when my brain wanders for 2 minutes while im walking around or doing a job around the house or whatever I find myself literally cursing myself out loud about some incident or faux pas I did with a friend or something, usually extremely minor and from many years ago. One example I did about 2 years ago was wipe my eye then with the same hand shake a friends hand as I was leaving his house. I really did not realise what i was doing until it was too late and I could see in his face he noticed what id done, its really minor and im sure hes forgotten but I cant get his look out of my head. If ive done something really bad or embarrassing the feeling is intensified greatly and it can take weeks to stop replaying it in my head. So several times a day (more if its recently and embarrasing) I stand there in the kitchen or wherever I find myself shouting my name and calling myself a fucking dickhead or something over something which just popped into my head, clearly thats not right. However when I dress up I 'usually' dont seem to do this at all.

So, back to the history lesson.

While I was in my mid teens I remember sitting in class one day in school and looking around at all the girls in the class and feeling jealous and envious of the fact that they seemed to be very happy. I started wondering how different my life would be if I was one of them instead of me, this slowly turned into wishing I could be one of them. Then one day I was reading a free paper that was left in the school library and there was a feature on a guy who did Tina Turner impersonations, and then at the back in the ads was an advert for a Transformation store (I wont name which one) that deals in TV/CD clothes and accessories. I was intrigued and in one day I learned about Transvestism and the possibility I could dress up and live like a girl.

So for the rest of my teens and beyond I then had these urges. Strong uncontrollable yearnings to dress up and try and live my fantasy. Im not proud of this but I would go through my mums stuff, my cousins stuff, my girlfriends stuff, and once a friends stuff when i was babysitting. The last one I was actually found out somehow but my friends swore to secrecy and it was never talked about again. I dont know what kept drawing me to it, the risk of getting caught? The excitement? As it was my teens it was also a highly narcissistic and sexualised activity. I couldnt control myself, and even when I wasnt doing it I was still wishing and fantasising about the possibilities and situations I could be in as a girl. Everytime I saw a girl I liked I would wonder what it would feel like to wear what she was wearing, or to do what she was doing. At this point I felt like I 'needed' to be girl, I couldnt get the idea out of my head and it went on for many, many years.

So in my very early 20's I moved across the country and this continued to be the case but I found even less opportunities to dress up. I met my current gf about 6 months after moving here and for a few months I had an outlet again. I came to realise that this wasnt fair on her and rather unsuccessfully tried to stop what I was doing. However I couldnt stop it in my head and the fantasies and yearnings continued and got stronger. After a year or so we got the internet and I had an outlet again, I found loads of fiction sites and regularly lost myself in the stories and fantasies people wrote online. This only lasted so long and soon enough I was dressing in my gfs stuff again. I tried my hardest not to and it was not a regular thing (as far as I can remember) but every now and again the urges would get too strong.

So about a year ago I decided id had enough. I needed to once and for all get it out of my system or make myself realise how much this actually means to me so I can do something about it. Behind my gfs back I shopped for loads of stuff online (breastforms, wig, clothes, etc) and hid them so I actually had my own clothes and style that reflected how I felt about myself, I started actually chatting to people online, went on meets and made some friends. I get a little frustrated that I cant go as far as I would like (I still want to shave my body). Truthfully when I started this I was hoping that I could get it out of my system once and for all and put it behind me but ive come to realise that this isnt the case, but emotionally this is a double edged sword. On the one hand I love it, it makes me feel good but on the other hand I wish I was normal. I really wish I was just a normal bloke who liked normal bloke activities like drinking and football, not makeup and shoes! Tie this in with the confidence and self esteem issues I have and I dont think this is helping.

Sometimes I can go weeks or longer without dressing be happy with that, but if I get a need to dress up and I cant, or if I start thinking about the situation I find myself in I can get depressed and feel very lonely. I dont know why, it doesnt seem rational to me and it can go on for a whole day. My gf tries to make me feel better but I cant tell her why I feel this way, not yet. Im currently off work with stress so ive been blaming it on that.

When I decided to do this properly I said to myself I was going to give it a year, which runs out end of July, and if I decided I couldnt let this go I would come clean to my gf or if I couldnt do that then split up with her. I dont want to live a lie with her its not fair. So im trying to decide how to put this into words but I cant figure out what my connection is to dressing. I read other peoples accounts of what makes them dress, how they feel or change, that there are 2 people in their head, or whatever and I dont feel like any of that, and this in turn makes me doubt myself. When I dress up I still feel like me, a switch doesnt go off in my head, my posture and movement doesnt suddenly become more graceful, I still feel like me but just a little happier I suppose. Im also concerned that after 10-15 years of hiding my true feelings that I might not be reading them right. I dont know if what I feel is linked to my dressing and what if I come out to everyone and then 6 month later decide its not what I want.

Im considering going to see a Therapist because I think all of what im feeling is linked together in some way and I dont know if I come clean to my gf that I will feel better about it.