Allow me to vent here. This is being written in the lobby of the hotel that is hosting The Keystone Conference. At the conference, I chat and talk with many people. Many from different parts of the country, many different age groups and many that are dealing with all of “this” in various ways. One thing that just fries me are people that tell me what I am going to do in the future. How I will deal with all of this. What road I will take, what decisions I will make.
How dare they! I am not them, they are not me. I don’t have their life circumstances, they do not have mine. How dare they tell me that I will transition just because they came to that same decision. I have been open here in admitting that I am a transwoman. But that does not mean I will become that full time. That does not mean I am at all uncomfortable being a man. I am not at all. But it is disingenuous of anyone who spends so much time dressed, or so much time thinking about it or so much time planning doing so, to say they are simply a crossdresser. To call this a hobby.
I have not arrived at where I am today without a great deal of thought, feeling, consideration, contemplation. I love being a woman. Not a T-gurl, not a trannie, a woman. Again, how one behaves and is accepted in social circles, how one comports themselves may be different than what their DNA might say. But by all measures, until I open my piehole, I have been told time and time again by people I have interacted with in general society, that they thought I was a woman when they initially saw me. Upon closer inspection, of course, I do not pass muster, but have always been immediately accepted.
So what am I? Who am I? What is the journey I am on? What is my place in society? And who’s business is it to tell me what I will do? I have developed a term to describe me, I am “transitioning in-place”. This is as far as it will go for me because I am very comfortable in my skin now. Did it take me a very long time to arrive at this conclusion? How’s about 60 years? Long enough? Do you think that allows me to make my own decisions and reach my own conclusions?
So just accept me for who I am and the decisions I have made to get here. Your decisions and life choices are yours. We may share some similarities, but I am all me, you are all you and please, remember that!
Tomorrow we put a cap on our Keystone 2022 chronicles with what is without question my favorite post ever! It is only meant to be a retrospective on my four days at Keystone and not my life or the many, many good souls I know and cherish that were not there. But I have never had that much of a concentration of love and acceptance and pure joy in my life for such an extended period of time (except with family). If you never read this blog again, please at least check it out tomorrow!
Great thoughts Kandi, and well said.
I like your term “transitioning in-place”.
I know you will continue to be the wonderful woman that you are.
I may have to trademark “transitioning in-place”!
Kandi, I really like this post. There is far too much presumption in this community – if we enjoy getting dressed up, we must be on the road to transition; if we make an effort to look nice, we must be on the lookout for sexual partners; if we post photos on public sites, we’re fair game for anything they want to throw at us and so on. What particularly surprised me about your piece was that you experienced it at a trans conference where you’d have thought that people would have a deeper understanding than your average admirer lurking around Flickr, Reddit or wherever.
I completely get that the dividing line between helpful advice and unhelpful presumption can be very thin or cloudy but the narrative nowadays seems to be that transition is the right answer and the only answer to any form of gender variance. It’s only the right answer for those for whom it’s the right answer (!) and the rest of us need to find our point of equilibrium.
And I’ll go as far as to say that all of those ‘experts’ who know exactly the path that your life will take would do far better by keeping quiet and learning from the great example you set to all of us.
And sometime, please could you give an insight into what goes on at these conferences? We hear a lot about them but there doesn’t seem to be anything even vaguely similar on this side of the Atlantic.
Amanda, thank you for your thoughtful comments and for prompting me in a post idea!
Ever since I’ve been out and learning as much as one can about being trans I’ve learned that being trans is many things and as a community we should never tell anyone well you really should transition
I was there I was at the beginning stages of doing just that but I had to pause and really think what all that would mean for me personally
So I stopped I realized that as one who took years to accept myself as you did Kandi that transitioning at this late stage in life was just not practical
Yes I know many who do but for this girl it just would not work
My divorce was part of that as well as my family
Had I really knew the girl inside when I was younger yes I do think it would have happened but now I just accept I never will and I will just be who I am a gender fluid person who yes find myself full en fem many days but not full time
We all must find our path
Love ya Kandi
My apology for the delayed response on this one. You are such an integral part of the blog, as you are always so willing to share. You are a wonderful friend!!
Maybe Kandi’s Land has become the hangout for girls who still want to be boys sometimes. Hah!
Thank you Kandi. Each of us absolutely must accept that our own journey is just that — our own journey. That being said, I delight in finding similarities in our attitudes and experiences. That sharing is part of our girl power for sure!
For me, that’s the thing. These commonalities between us, similar stories, experiences and feelings. That has made my ability to accept who I am and make it work, all the easier.
As you well know I am the same as I live 1/2 my life as Dave and the other as Tonya or T. I love my life and I am always the same person. Tonya might be a little more fun. Gender fluid for sure.
Just remember No One Gets a Vote in Your Life but YOU. Live your life as it won’t last forever ~~
Tonya / Dave
Thank you my beautiful friend!!
Kandi, when I came out to myself 2 years ago I fashioned myself as a crossdresser. That it was a hobby. But then a few years later I realized it was not a “hobby.” Once one stops repressing and the genie is out the bottle I started to realize it was more than a hobby. That I was Trans.
I was initially ignorant on this, but I thought anyone that fashioned themselves as Trans would eventually transition. But that is not the case. Like you, I am not going to transition as it isn’t practical at this later stage in life. Like you, I am a husband to my understanding wife.
So, you can be Trans and not transition. But allow yourself your girl time. Allow yourself to be happy.
Christine, you may notice here, I allow myself plenty of girl time and am happier than any girl should be! There are so many commonalities in all of our stories, and we never realize it until we venture out either in the real world or virtually. Thank you dear for all of your very meaningful contributions of late!
Kandi, thank you. I also wanted to add one more thing. I recently started watching your youtube video series. It was great to hear your voice. Further, just to hear the confidence radiating from your voice was very empowering. Thank you.
Christina, that means the world to me! If one girl gets something from what I did and what I do, then it is all so worthwhile!
As one of the hired help here (just a joke, folks), I will repeat something I heard from a gender specialist who came to talk to our St. Louis Gender Foundation dinner.
The words of wisdom?
“When you meet a transgender individual, you’ve met one transgender individual.”
Our stories are all different. It’s also called the transgender spectrum, because there is a wide range of individuals under the transgender umbrella, including CDs, those who have transitioned, those who present female full-time but haven’t taken any other steps, and countless other possibilities.
My story is different than Kandi’s. My level of gender dysphoria is different than yours. What is right for me isn’t necessarily right for you.
I hope what I write here helps you understand my story, and in turn, allows you to better understand your story.
I can attest to the fact that you do make a difference! Well said, but I would expect nothing less!!
Kandi, I really love the way you put things in perspective. Reading what you say has appealed to me and helped me so much. I really love being a girl and often think of pursuing that path further but then, at the same time I don’t really want to abandon the life I have or some of my traditionally male activities. At least not yet but I’m open to it. One thing for sure, I don’t think the feminine side is ever going away. It’s just something I will have to learn to balance. The way you do it and have such a fulfilled life never ceases to amaze me. As far as I’m concerned you’re all woman and I’m honored to have such a sister to look up to.
And I am honored to be your sister! Only took me 60 years to get here so learn form my journey and make your life yours!
Well said Kandi. I’ve often been in the same conversations over the years. As someone that has been out in public since the mid 90’s, I find it funny sometimes that people who have only been on this journey for a short time, or have recently figured out where they are going, know what everyone else should do. I wrote an article last year, in which part of what I was trying to explain is it often can take us many years to think we finally know where we are headed on this journey. If and when we do get to that point, we often expect others to accept instantly a decision it took us many years to accept. I like Tonya’s comments above, as she I I have had this discussion on a few occasions. No one’s circumstances are the same, and we all have to decide what works best for our own unique situation. We all get to decide how far we want to go, and what risks we will take. Could not agree with you more on this !
Thanks Lisa! It is always wonderful to get affirmation on things like this. Even thought we know we are not alone, sometimes we are.
Open invitation: I’d love to see what you wrote!
Hi Kandi ,
I can’t say how much your comments resonate with me . I have a lovely group of friends both trans and otherwise . Some of my trans friends do exactly how you desribe , ” I must do ! ” because they have . One in particular won’t let it go that I really need to be on homones , she just can’t grasp that I’m totally comfortable with my lifestyle now I live full time , I try to impress on her that on a daily basis hormones or sugery would not change how I live and the way I interact with society in general . I attend two painting groups now and have joined a national association dealing with preserving our heritage , what ever they accept me as works fine for me .
It never ceases to amaze me that people can’t grasp that I have (and apparently you have) found a place in the world that makes me happy. Keep being you, I’ll keep being me and maybe we change minds along the way!!
I should have mentioned that I would have replied on ” Crossdressers.com” but through circumstances I was banned ( long story ) over a year ago so it’s lovely to be able to use this portal to communicate with you again .
Best wishes , Teresa .
Teresa, the door is always open here! I, myself, have pulled back on CD.com, I just use it when I need to say something important.
Thank you for the wonderful messages!!
Like you I have no desire to transition, never have, never will. I am a mature CD who has been an in-the-closet crossdresser all my life until finally coming out in public two months ago. It has been a wonderful experience and I am so glad I took this next step. I am sure some of my reasons for wanting to feel feminine and look like a woman are similar to those of others but some of them are indeed unique to me and for anyone to think they can tell me (or you) what the future holds is preposterous. Everyone’s journey on this path is different.
Thank you for being so open and honest about your feelings and experiences. You are a lovely woman, both inside and out.
Fiona, your message was a gift! I accept it with great pride to be part of our sisterhood!
Kandi; First of all I must say that I am new to your blogs, I have a rule never to open links in other sites, (bad experience that caused me to throw out my device and internet provider). But for some reason, this week I opened your link from crossdressers.com. How glad that I did. Your comments were so correct, and I believe that I am in a similar place to you on this journey. Now if you will excuse me, I need to look back over some of the earlier posts.
Welcome aboard Kaye!!