Coping

I was once asked what might have helped me cope with all of this in earlier years.  The truth of the matter is the “coping” went on for almost 50 years. I guess it was the structure of my life that allowed me to cope.  I was and am a husband.  Love that role.  I was and am a father.  Now in the role of supporting our children.  Then actively involved in helping raise and provide for them.  Occupying my mind was critical with my ability to manage the urges.  Being a man, doing things men do, certainly helped.  I played football in high school.  I did things with my friends.  I competed in various activities, whether it was golf or softball.  The kids’ activities.  I have worked out all of my life, now I am a runner.  I watch sports, rooted for my teams, was and am a man.  But we all know now, there was more than a guy hiding in there.

Between my then professional career and the activities the kids were involved in, my mind was generally occupied.  I’ve talked before about my triggers: stress, opportunity and an idle mind.  There is always some stress in raising a family, opportunities were rare (being home alone or on the road) and with everything going on, my mind remained focused on what I needed to do each day.

It probably helped me cope as well never admitting to myself that I was a crossdresser.  To me, it was an urge that I would beat, a problem that would go away.  I never faced the reality of the situation until October 2014 (see the “About” section of the blog).

Now, I would argue I didn’t cope well.  Intense stress, stress like you cannot imagine (outside of the stress associated with a health issue), fueled a CD fire like you cannot believe.  Now looking back, with the gift of perspective, I know I was not personally happy.  By that I mean I was not happy with myself.  I was happy being Dad, my wife’s husband, a friend, etc., but I was never happy with myself.  I can see that clear as day now.  Had that cheesy mustache, gone now (certainly by necessity, but I don’t miss it).  Hated having my picture taken (do so all the time now).  Never smiled, smile constantly now.  Loved my wife but rarely told her so, do so now daily, frequently.

Coped?  I guess I did since I made it through the other end.  Coped well?  Maybe not.

9 thoughts on “Coping”

  1. Kandi, I coped in similar fashion. I never admitted to myself I was a CDer. I siloed that behavior off. For much of my life I focused on my work to not let my mind idle. I played sports in HS. I never smiled for the camera either. I considered smiling “showing others” my feminine side that I wanted hidden. I was embarrassed and ashamed of my feminine side.

    But then I semi-retired before COVID. And being semi-retired it allows one more time……to think. Uh oh. One day while dressing, my egg cracked. I admitted to myself for the first time I was a CDer. No more denial. I eventually told my wife through a letter I had her read and it went amazingly well. And now almost 3 years later from that time I dress every day at home and consider myself Trans (but won’t transition) much like yourself.

    It really is amazing how the mind works with coping. I was in denial for most of my life. I repressed it. Now every day I feel like I look back and re-examining my life through a new prism without denial and it is kind of interesting to review my actions and non-actions.
    -Christina

    1. Christina,

      I guess the thing that strikes me to this day, I was like so many others. Almost, literally, exactly like them. Like you. I knew I was not alone that I liked to wear women’s clothing, as that is all I would allow myself to admit, to myself. But how I processed it, wow, so many of us do so almost exactly the same, on almost exactly the same timelines.

      You are just awesome. You readers out there, yeah you, you are awesome too!

      Thanks so very much for your affirmation here!
      Kandi

    2. I also kept my mind active during HS by belonging to a group, that was only harming myself. Foolish of me, to think that pain will drive the cd out of my being. At 28 I have admitted to myself Iam a crossdresser and stopped purging. My next degree, level, is to tell my wife and kids.

  2. I grew a mustache at age 13 and later chomps. It was a way to keep myself from cross dressing. Kept it till I was 30. Kids, sports, general life occupied my life for years with very little time for anything else. Rarely had alone time. At age 50, I had a life changing accident. It took over 4 years to recover enough to live again, but I will never fully recover. My mindset changed and I started to do the things I always wanted to do. When my hand/arm was in a cast for months I started to get pedicures; first without color now with hand drawn designs. Panties was at the suggestion of my urologist.
    Now I wear mostly women’s or androgynous (women’s) clothes, women’s shoes (high heels). Have waxed brows and below my waist. Have colorful (non-red or pink) gel fingernails. And wear mascara.
    Bottom line: I am happier.

  3. Wow!!!! Kandi, this is a post worth 600,000 likes on any social media platform and is worth hundreds or thousands of dollars or hours spent with any therapist. You touched me, with stress, opportunity, and idel mind. Because, these were also my triggers after a purge. I love this post, can you email it to me?

  4. I find it difficult to be so articulate.
    There’s much of my experience in what you wrote.
    I’ve just retired and looking for ways to safely enjoy what’s left.
    I keep busy but often look forward to reward myself with some girl time.

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