Close this search box.

The Tipping Point

Mandy checks back in!

By Amanda J.

Malcolm Gladwell introduced the ‘tipping point’ in his 2000 book of the same name.  He defined it as the moment of critical mass, the threshold, the boiling point moment that leads to sudden, dramatic, radical change.  I have to confess that I’ve never read said book but have heard Gladwell speak about it at a conference and as I pondered this, it struck me that the tipping point concept has a lot of relevance in our world.

At the end of my last post, I talked about shedding the ultra-femme and going out and about wearing an understated outfit based on plain black trousers and I couldn’t help thinking what a contrast it was to the standard CDer ‘uniform’ of a smart dress and high heeled courts/pumps.  In fact one person I exchanged messages about it with declared that they thought that going out in clothes that are far closer to my normal attire than a skirt and heels was a wasted opportunity.  Maybe so but the more fundamental issue is whether, in that outfit, I could truly claim to have crossed the divide.

First, let’s set out some context and, as usual, I’m aiming this at those of you who, like me, are closeted to a great extent but read all of the wonderful accounts of life in the outside world here on Kandi’s Land and want to join in the fun but are terrified of the prospect.  Or perhaps, like me, you have tasted life in the outside world but didn’t feel completely comfortable while you were out.

As crossdressers, our time to indulge the inner woman is often severely limited.  The most she-time I’ve ever managed in a single week is 17 hours – that’s 10% of the total hours in the week – but, averaged out over the whole year, it’s probably something in the region of 1-2%.  So when I do get the opportunity to spread my feminine wings, I’m sure as hell going to make the most of it.   Heels that are only just possible to walk in, sheer tights/pantyhose which most women eschew these days, skirts & dresses rather than the far more practical trousers, fake boobs, full makeup (‘overflowing’ would probably be a better term than ‘full’) and a wig in a style that would take quite a while to replicate on my natural head of hair (about 2 years of growth plus heaven knows how long in the hairdressers to tame and colour the resultant mop).

And I have to say that I love the end result.  I look in the mirror and no longer see ‘him’ but rather a female that I rather like having in my life and who I miss if I don’t see her for a while.  I feel completely comfortable in her skin to the degree that I not only no longer fear being out in public but also feel an increasing but inexplicable draw to the outside world.   I’m not quite sure when I passed that particular tipping point – the point when fear was replaced by excitement – but pass it I definitely did.

But being in the outside world is a scary proposition.  Whilst I’ve managed to get my transformations to a point that passes muster from a reasonable viewing distance, I know that I’ll fool no one at close quarters and know from experience that the feelings of elation can soon evaporate, replaced by a deep feeling of self-consciousness and a desire to get back to the safety of the car or house as quickly as possible.  It’s the point at which those ‘oh-so-feminine’ high heels become instruments of torture, the smart outfit I’d chosen to wear looks out of place amongst all of the other casually dressed women out and about at the same time and the confidence I felt when I stepped out is supplanted by self-doubt.  A tipping point has clearly been passed but let’s not dwell on that as there’s nothing positive to say about it.

Instead, I want to look at the tipping point from a different perspective so let’s take a trip out to the local town centre.  As winter is still upon us as I write this, it’s a bit chilly and most of the women are wrapped up warmly in a sweater, jeans and a warm coat.   Some do not appear to be wearing any makeup, others perhaps just some eyeliner and lip gloss.  Let’s pick one and let’s call her Sue – she’s dressed warmly in the outfit I described and wearing a pair of training shoes for comfort.  As it was just a quick visit to the town centre, she’s not bothered with makeup. Funnily enough, that’s exactly the same as me the last time I went into town in my normal guise and yet the differences between Sue and me are obvious – Sue is undeniably female and I’m undeniably not!  ‘Ah yes’ you say ‘but you were in drab making no effort to look feminine’.  That’s true but, there again, neither is Sue making any particular effort.  In fact if we hadn’t singled her out, she’d just have been another anonymous & unremarkable person in the crowd.

The answer of course is that, being female to start with, Sue needs to do nothing to prove that.  And, in fact, all the things that she can use to enhance (rather than define) her feminine appearance when she chooses to – makeup, jewelry, dresses, high heeled shoes etc. – we need to mask our masculinity.  But the big question is then how far do we need to go in that respect?  Or, to put it another way, where is the tipping point between our masculine world and the feminine one we aspire to?

I guess the first question we need to ask ourselves is, in the context of going out en femme, what are our success factors?  I’ll make a sweeping generalisation at this point and declare that there are probably two (or three if you want to include ‘get back home in one piece’).  The first, and most important, is that we’ve got to feel that we’ve achieved what we set out to do – to step over the male/female divide.  The second, which is a consequence of the first, is that we have to feel that we’ve been perceived as a female by others.  I feel confident in my assertion of the first of those because whilst I normally go out dressed almost identically to Sue – jeans, T-shirt & training shoes – I have no sensation that I am dressed as a woman so work is clearly needed to achieve that.  And there’s plenty of circumstantial evidence to support the second being a valid success factor – just look at the obsession with ‘passing’ on any trans themed forum.

I can still vividly remember the first time I walked outside wearing female clothing even though it was the best part of a decade ago.   To the casual observer, I was just another guy walking around but under my jeans I was wearing feminine underwear and tights and the unfamiliar sensations were enough to tell me that I was experiencing something quite special.  And sitting down on the seafront to eat a meal I’d just bought from a chip shop (yes, I know, unbecoming of a lady but I was sort of pretending to be a guy at the time!) and seeing not socks but sheer nylon covering my legs in the gap between the bottom of my trousers and the top of my training shoes was the icing on the cake.  So whilst I may not have looked anything like the Amanda that you would recognise from my photo on the contributors’ page, the feelings of femininity and emotions I experienced on that day were profound.

But that then begs the question as to how much further I would have needed to go to satisfy my success factors?  Or, to put it another way, even though we’re to all intents and purposes identically dressed, what is it about Sue that contrasts so much with me?  From a purely visual point of view, probably three main things which I’ll call the three Bs– Barnet, boat race and boobs.  And in case you’re having a few problems understanding what I mean, the first two stem from cockney rhyming slang – Barnet = Barnet Fair = hair and boat race = face.  Boobs is fortunately internationally understood although I could have called them Bristols (Bristols = Bristol Cities and I’ll leave the rest for you to work out yourself).

That’s quite an interesting observation when you think about it.   If I decided to transform myself but only addressed one of the three, I’m going to look quite strange – the hairstyle alone would make me look like a throwback to the ‘60s or ‘70s,  and just doing either the makeup or the boobs is going to cause an awful lot of raised eyebrows.  Pick any two out of the three of them, however, and the balance starts shifting.  A feminine wig & breast forms – perhaps a transitioner in the early stages of her journey?  A feminine wig and makeup – perhaps a woman with a small bust?  Makeup and breast forms – many women carry off what are traditionally male hairstyles.  All three?  Now we’re getting somewhere.

But we’re not at the tipping point yet.  Because whilst I can assert that Sue and I are dressed identically, we’re not really because Sue chose her clothes from the women’s racks; mine came from the men’s and there are fundamental differences in the way that the garments are cut and often in the fabrics used.  But what if my jeans and top had come from the women’s racks?  And what if my trainers had a small flash of pink on them, or I traded them for a cute pair of ballet pumps, patent loafers or ankle boots?  And perhaps added some costume jewelry (nothing fancy, just earrings, a necklace and a couple of rings)?

Clearly, my outfit is nothing like my beloved bodycon dress & stilettos but does that make it any less feminine?  The short answer is of course no – in the binary world that most of us inhabit, an outfit put together exclusively from things bought from the women’s department and an effort to look the part through hair, makeup and body shape (as far as is possible), there’s nothing masculine about what I’ve described and there’ll be enough visual clues when looking in the mirror to emphasise that the divide has been well and truly crossed.  But will others have a similar view?

But before we consider that, there’s an important point to make here.  As closeted crossdressers, our feminine time is precious.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with spending that time in dresses & heels.  In fact, I view being able to wear those things as my compensation for all of the struggles I have resulting from this strange condition I seem to have been born with.  Our fantasy world is where we can lose ourselves in the dreams of what might have been and if looking in the mirror and seeing an elegant, sexy or even provocative looking woman smiling back makes us feel good about ourselves, then that really is all that matters.

But for many of us, there comes a point where we feel that the closet that once protected us now constrains us and we yearn to break free.  Within reason, there’s absolutely no reason why we should not step outside in the clothes that give us the most pleasure.  My first proper steps into the outside world in early 2023 were taken in a dress, pink jacket & heels and in those I could easily have been a woman taking a few minutes break from work to grab a bite to eat or stopping at the supermarket on her way to church (or so I convinced myself!).  I may not have seen any other women dressed like that while I was out but that doesn’t mean it’s in any way out of the ordinary.  It just means that, in the situations I was in, most women dress more casually than I was dressed.  But the truth was that the exhilaration of being out was tainted a little through both the physical discomfort of walking far further in heels than I was used to and the emotional discomfort of feeling a little self-conscious.  And in the quest to be accepted as any other woman would be when out and about, that’s an important lesson to learn.  Because most women have learned the hard way that walking any distance in heels is not a pleasant experience and overdressing, apart from being unnecessary, can garner unwanted attention from others, particularly guys.

But how far do we really need to go here?  I briefly mentioned ‘passing’ earlier and the sad reality is that almost none of us will ever fully pass – in other words be indistinguishable from a genetic female – at close quarters.  But in the normal scheme of things, that doesn’t matter.  With a little care in our preparation, even with minimal makeup we’ll not give the game away from normal viewing distance of six feet or more.  Moreover, at close quarters, we’ll pass 100% of the time as transwomen and this is the 21st century where transgenderism and its cousins androgyny & metrosexuality are increasingly old news.

Each of us has our own tipping point where we feel that we’ve fully left ‘him’ behind but towards the end of last year, I started to realise that mine was far more within reach than I once thought.  In the rush to hear the click-clack of my heels on the pavement, I’d almost forgotten the sensations of that first foray into the outside world in the mid 2010s, unremarkable to everyone who saw me and yet profound for me.  It didn’t cross my mind at the time but if I’d added a wig, a little makeup & jewelry and, perhaps, a bra and breast forms that tipping point that still seemed light years away at that time could have felt within touching distance and something as seemingly as insignificant as a smile from a passer-by may even have convinced me that I’d crossed it.

Like many of my posts, I started writing this one many months ago and it remained in abeyance, pushed to one side by other posts, most notably the 7-part ‘Crossdressing 101’ series.  In the main, that was because I had no real world evidence to back up my theory.  But whilst the post may have remained on ice, my thoughts about the whole idea of, for want of a better expression ‘dressing down’ remained active.  In fact, something strange was happening in my mind.

I was increasingly getting the feeling that my CDing had lost its purpose – CDing for the sake of CDing and nothing more.  I can put on a dress and my highest heels and imagine that I’m dressed for a dinner date – a dinner date which, in reality is a salad eaten on my own at lunch time before everything gets removed and packed away.  Or perhaps a different dress and slightly lower heels conjures up thoughts of welcoming the family into the house for a Christmas gathering – a family who in truth are completely oblivious of this side of me.  Even the majority of the times that I had stepped outside had lacked purpose other than to have successfully stepped outside.  But the thought of being able to look in the mirror and see not a woman all dressed up with nowhere to go but a woman ready to experience life as any other woman would and then to go and actually experience that life was growing exponentially in my mind.  And the idea that my outfit would not only be casual but also be based on trousers, not a skirt paradoxically added to the excitement about the whole thing.

If you’ve read my last post, you’ll already know that in mid November 2023, I got dressed in a simple outfit consisting of the grey sweater, black trousers, low heeled boots and long black coat shown on this photo and drove to a nearby town [insert photo here].  And as I walked through the busy shopping centre, nobody seemed to notice me at all.  Now, I’m not deluded (well, not very deluded but I do have my moments) and as I said above, at close quarters I fool no one and so I was feeling a little nervous as I queued up in a pharmacy to buy a packet of tissues and yet the assistant treated me in the same way as she treated every other shopper (and I know that because I received exactly the same level of service that I do in my normal presentation).  And it was the same story when I stopped at a café for tea and a pastry.  Maybe the assistants & baristas have seen it all one hundred times before and a trans person is old news.  Maybe they’re happy for someone a little different to other customers to add some variety to their otherwise mundane day.  Or maybe they couldn’t care less who they serve or how they’re dressed.

It would be nice to report that someone called me ‘ma’am’ or referred to me as ‘she’ to a colleague but sadly that didn’t happen.  Equally, though, no one referred to me as ‘sir’, ‘mate’ or ‘guv’ so I class the outing as a resounding success!

As we emerge from the closet, we inevitably worry about how we will be viewed by others but my experience on that November day proved to me that those worries were groundless.  Of course, I took care to present myself as best I could through my hair, makeup and nails (and not forgetting the fake boobs!) but, paradoxically, that was all it took to convince me that I had passed the tipping point, at least as far as I was concerned.  Maybe those I encountered saw me as nothing more than what I really am, a crossdressed 63 year old male, but even if that was the case, my uneventful outing just goes to prove that our fears are without basis.  And I should add that, emboldened by my experience, I went back a few days later for more shopping and another refreshment break at the café and the experience was just as wonderful as the first time (although I have to confess that it was in a dress, tights and higher heels that time!).

I’d like to close with a message to all those who have yet to spread their wings in the outside world.  If the only thing stopping you is fear, then stop and think where your own tipping point is.  People will only notice you if you draw attention to yourself and if that worries you, then consider how you can redress the balance.  Worried about walking in heels?  Wear flats!  Concerned that people will see you as a man in a dress?  Wear trousers/pants!  Scared that you can’t apply makeup?  Strip it back to the basics – a little foundation, eyeliner and lip gloss goes a long way.  You’re only doing what more or less every other woman is doing, will be no less feminine as a result and few people will notice you and those that do won’t care.  You can just soak up the sensations of setting the inner woman free and you’ll almost certainly find that you’ve gone way past your tipping point without even realising it.


23 Responses

  1. Amanda,
    Well, another fantastic deep dive into your world. I love how you describe the inner feelings of womanhood.

    You have clearly stated how easy (maybe not so easy) it is to cross the divide from thinking as a guy, to feeling feminine.

    I personally know that dressing for the occasion and circumstance of your outing allows me to feel extremely comfortable as my TG self. I had never thought of it before, but I totally agree with your three points: hair, face and boobs. If you get those appropriate for your particular outing, everything falls into place.

    When I am out I don’t think about my appearance (not too much anyways). I just go about my life intermingling with society.

    Thank you for this excellent post. Well written and I am sure very helpful to many of the readers.


    1. Jocelyn, thank you for sharing your and, as always, for your support.

      Clearly, for all of those readers who live their entire lives en femme, all of this is either ‘old hat’ or irrelevant. What for me was a real eye-opener was that by toning down the outfit, I could enjoy the experience of being out and about far more. And that in itself was a real confidence builder as the next time I went out, I felt far more comfortable in a skirt and slightly higher heels than I had done previously. Of course, most people don’t care how others are dressed and have far bigger concerns in their own lives than worrying about whether the woman in front of them in the checkout queue is all that she seems to be but the idea that we can pass through society unnoticed is incredibly affirming even if we do not ‘pass’ in the literal sense.

  2. Hi Amanda,
    Reading your post made me decide to submit a post that I had no intention of doing but decided it may go well with the one you just wrote. As you all know I help other ‘girls’ address and get over their fear of being out in public en femme.

    In four days I will be travelling to Vancouver to meet one of my projects Megan Kelly. I have been working with her for over two years. She, unfortunately, has a wife who knows about Megan but is totally against her existence period. Megan is a very attractive girl in between 30 and 40. And I think a very attractive girl. Her biggest hang up is her height. She’s just over 6 feet tall. She is a lot like last years project Claire whom you met when I did my post on the Girl’s Weekend in Kelowna. In a post I wrote I said that us CD’s are our harshest critics and Megan is a perfect example. I will be posting some pics with my post and when you see her you’ll be saying to your selves, “what the hell did she have to worry about”. Which is exactly what I said to Claire when I met her.

    Saturday soiree is titled Megan’s day out. When she let me know she was coming to Vancouver on the 16th. I was immediately super excited. I phoned my girl friend Maggie who’s the president of Gurls in the Burbs. She helps set up the Girls Weekend in Kelowna every year. When I told her about Megan and that I was meeting her at Shaivona’s Salon Maggie was all over it. She’s arranged to meet at a bar and grill for lunch then go shopping at a high end Consignment shop and dinner and clubbing after that. She also posted the event on Gurls in the Burbs and it would appear there will be between 8 to 14 girls coming to support Megan including Shaivona after she’s done with Megan. She’s a Cis girl and just a totally wonderful person.

    When Megan and I first started talking about this via email she confessed she was pretty much a basket case. But once she found out the amount of support she was getting she calmed right down eventually. When I told her about possibly going clubbing I thought she would freak but she barely mentioned it. I let my roomie from my trip to Vegas Know about it and she was devastated she couldn’t be there but added at the end “OMG this is going to be the social event of the year. I will be a happy girl if I see a calm Megan just being out with her girl friends and having a good time. Will that happen? Well honestly I think it will but we’ll all have to wait to find out for sure.

    1. Trish, it’s one of life’s injustices that British Columbia is about as far from one of the countries that gave it its name as it’s possible to get – Saturday sounds like it’s going to be an absolute blast and I’ll be there in spirit, if not in body!

      There’s a simple message to get across to the Megans of this world and that’s that nobody really cares how anyone else is dressed. We fret about it because we have our male selves to use as a reference point but, without that, people just assume that anyone who looks like a woman is a woman and even if they do correctly guess our provenance, they have far better things to do in life than worry about it. And there’s overwhelming evidence on this forum that if we’re respectful to what it means to be female, acceptance is there for the taking.

      I hope you all have a fantastic time and look forward to hearing all about it.

      1. Amanda, I’ll take the ‘if not in body’ part. It’s probably only a 10 hour flight for you 🤣. We all know how we felt the first time out in public and most of us “mature” crossdressers in particular with no internet, no acceptance. We were taking our lives in our own hands back then.

        It will be a day to remember especially for Megan. I told her in one of our recent emails that once the day and night is done and your on your way back to Victoria you’re going to be asking yourself…what the hell was I worried about?. She’s my roomie that night too. So anyway, stay tuned girls.

        1. Trish, there’s good news and bad news – the good news is that the flight is under 10 hours – 9:25 is the fastest I found.

          The bad news is the cost – for a direct flight, it’s £1.3K and I’m not completely sure how I’d swing that big a dent in the budget with Mrs A – certainly not by telling the truth about my intentions for the trip!

      1. Hey Cali,
        You should come up to Kamloops and ski Sun Peaks. It’s like a smaller Whistler only better.

        Trish 💖

  3. Amanda,
    I’m a little older than you and have very little hair. And even though my picture shows me out in a dress, I rarely go out in FULL hair and make-up in a dress. BUT (big but) I am almost always en femme from head to toe, incuding exquiste nails and sometimes mascara.
    I have passed several tippng points. Some I was pushed thru by life. I sometimes think these are ‘worry points’ .
    The first was switching to panties, a suggestion from my urologist decades ago.
    Then switching to only women’s shoes; here my tipping point came after multiple reconstructive surgeries and the realization I had ‘female shaped feet’, big toe box, narrow heel. Switching to high heels all the time came from an injury that pushed me over worrying ‘point’ about what other people thought. Today you will frequently see me in public rocking high knee boots with 4 inch heels (and loving it).

    My wardrobe had a tipping point, I couldn’t find what I wanted in men’s wear but found it women’s (by accident on the way to my car) that ‘opened the door’ that never closed. For more than a decade, instead of purchasing men’s clothes I have been purchasing women’s clothes. I may not be able to wear that bodycon dress to work, but I wear my high compression bodycon bodysuits (w/ skinny jean and knee highs) all the time. My wardrobe is so much more colorful and diversified now. Since I have been losing weight, my men’s clothes no longer fit. What a bummer, guess I’ll just have to wear what fits.

    How I dress and look is very similair to the women I encounter on a daily basis with the following exceptions: I have little hair (Barnet), less makeup, BETTER nails, BETTER heels.

    1. Cali, thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and you really did hammer home what I was trying to say in my post.

      I tend to write my posts in advance and currently have quite a few in varying stages of completion. One I was looking at today has very close similarities to your points about your own clothes and presentation. Should we really get hung up about which side of the aisle our clothing came from, so to speak. Your point about your heels sparks an interesting question – why should anyone go through life suffering purely because they are expected to conform to societal norms? Your heels relieve physical pain and that has to be a far bigger consideration than any thoughts about where they came from or who the target consumer was in the mind of the designer.

      Once we can think about ‘our’ clothes rather than men’s or women’s clothes, life becomes a whole lot easier.

      Thank you again for such a fascinating comment.

      1. Amanda,
        I wish I had time to write more posts here. But I need to maintain my revenue sources for a few more years, so I have been quite busy. The real problem with so called women’s clothes is: I want it ALL. I just purchased 2 new heels and another bodysuit.
        One thing you didn’t mention was age. You get to an age were it doesn’t matter what others think, you just need to do what is right for you. My problem is I like mascara toooo much. LOL

  4. Thank you Amanda for sharing this. It gives me a lot to think about. I’m so glad you’re posting here. I’m absent so much of the time from what’s new on this site so when I visit it takes a lot of time to go back and see what I’ve been missing. But have never ever visited without leaving feeling uplifted and inspired by what I read. There’s so much experience and wisdom to gather from my more experienced older sisters here, which you all are, even though I’ve never talked to some of you. Though I’ve been out en femme publicly several times, I really felt like nothing less than wearing a dress and full makeup would do. Still, I don’t think there’s any way anyone would have seen a woman up close. But I really want to try toning it down sometime and go out presenting as a woman but in drab and see how it goes and if I really feel less conspicuous or not. I agree that all the fear I’ve experience is mostly my imagination running wild. But if it weren’t for Kandi’s land and her influence as well as yours, I still don’t know if I would have ever left the house. And reading Trish’s comments makes me wonder if I wouldn’t dare get involved in some of those kind of events myself. I’m sure it would help to blossom like the young ladies she has helped and I would really love to meet some of the people I look up to and admire so much. Eventually I’d love nothing more than to be able to help others and encourage them the same way you wonderful ladies have done for me. And I live only a 3 hour drive away from Las Vegas, so, like next door if the occasion ever comes.

    1. Liz, long time no hear – I hope things are going well for you!

      Your point about imagination running wild is spot on. So many of us have experienced that sort of emotion and in the end, it just detracts from what should be an affirming experience. It’s a fact of life that people will notice a well dressed woman and that’s particularly true if she’s dressed in a far more feminine way than everyone else in the vicinity. People will inevitably look at her and if it’s us that are in the position of said woman, it can be unnerving to say the least.

      When I went on the outing I mentioned in the post, I found it mind blowing that not one single passer by seemed to notice me and as soon as I realised that was the case, I could really start to enjoy browsing the women’s sections. There’s another big consideration too and that’s if we go too overboard on the femme, we can give the game away, so to speak. By toning things right down, we introduce an element of ambiguity amongst those who notice us – fundamentally ‘is she or isn’t she?’ – and that works in our favour too.

      And the icing on the cake was that once, by dressing down, I’d banished all of the fears I’d had, I felt confident to dial up the femme a little bit next time I went out.

      Thank you as always for your kind words and support.

  5. Amanda,
    I guess ” The tipping point ” is a good analogy , even being full time I have to consider that concept . What really separates us can be summed up in one word , ” Freedom ” . I was free to make the decision to become totally Teresa you through various reasons don’t have the same luxury . It must be tantalising at times to think if you could pull it off or not , the passing question can never be fully answered because you don’t have the ” Freedom ” to prove it .

    Do I go out as Sue ? Not exactly , she may not need or use makeup but I do , she may choose to leave her hair wild , I have to rely on a wig . It’s also worth considering the women who need those aids , many women sadly suffer with cancer , they have lost their hair and their breasts , they must question if they still pass as a woman . In that context ” passing ” is a undefined term , what truly defines a woman ?

    If you choose not to dress to the ” nines ” it isn’t wasted time , it still satisfies inner needs , the greatest compliment you can receive is not how good you look in a dress but not to receive a one at all because you have been totally accepted .

    There isn’t a perfect woman they come in all shapes and sizes as do men , the ” tipping point ” is enough markers or telltales to tip the balance from male to female , I had to learn that very quickly .

    Perhaps just a story to make the point . I popped into a new Travel Agent to chat about taking a cruise , the manager suggested I pop in the following week because it was their formal opening by the town mayor , wine and nibbles were on offer . Instead of my usual black trousers and sweater with my Cotton Traders raincoat I wore a Klass cowl neck dress , with a navy blue leather blazer with matching scarf and heeled ankle boots , the manager gave me a hug telling me I looked great . In fact my outfit was on par with many of the other ladies for an event like this , had I ” passed ” or had I just made the right choices to be accepted ? I would have soon known if I’d made the wrong choices , OK other women did check me out but not because I looked male no they were checking out the outfit , as for the men well I got chatted up a couple of times !!

    Shame I can’t attach a picture as the manager Emailed one with me included in the official opening picture .

    1. Teresa, I’m going to be rather more direct than usual in my response to your comment as, yet again, you have implied that because I have not chosen the same path as you, my life is in some way deficient or, as you put it this time, I don’t have the same luxury of freedom that you have. I enjoy absolute freedom in my life and I choose to live in the way I do firstly because of the commitment I made to Mrs A when I married her over three decades ago and secondly because it gives me the best balance between all facets of my life. I could choose to live the rest of my life as a female but the price to pay would be a family blown apart, a broken marriage and at least two – Mrs A and myself – very unhappy people.

      Do I wonder whether I could ‘pull it off’? First of all, there’s no question of me lacking the freedom to answer the ‘passing’ question because I already know the answer – there are no circumstances under which anyone who encounters me presenting female would ever think that I am anything other than trans but my outings and interactions with others have underlined that it doesn’t matter. Maybe there’s an appreciation that I’ve done everything I can to show respect to womanhood in the way I dress and behave or maybe those I encounter just don’t care but there’s enough evidence through the posts here to underline that acceptance, even if not universal, is widespread. So on that basis, I am confident that if I did decide that I wanted to socially transition on a permanent basis, I could see it though. I don’t for one moment think that taking that step would be a walk in the park, quite the opposite in fact, but it’s a step that I would not fear if I believed it was in my best interests (which for avoidance of doubt it isn’t).

      It’s important to understand the underlying message in my posts. Kandi is an inspiration to us all but I used to read her posts and think that I could never do what she does and I know that there are many other CDers who feel the same way. My aim is firstly to coax them out of the shadows in the same way that the writings of other contributors here helped me break free from the confines of the closet, secondly to help them think about their own feelings & situation and come to terms with what to them may feel like a guilty secret for want of a better expression and thirdly to help them avoid making the same mistakes I made. The message in this particular post was a simple one – we don’t need to go ‘all out’ to feel feminine and be accepted as such – and hopefully someone somewhere will read it and see a way forward for themself. Talk of a lack of freedom, and in particular, the implication that the passing question needs to be affirmatively answered, ultimately dilutes that message.

      I also need to pick up on your point about women suffering from cancer which, in all honesty, I found to be bordering on the offensive. I have known several women, including my late mother, who had cancer but NEVER heard any of them question whether the effects of the disease or treatment would cause them to doubt whether they still ‘passed’ as a woman. My mother had a mastectomy because of breast cancer and her only concern was survival, something she managed for well over a decade until it returned with a vengeance and she lost the fight.

      Comments on posts are important as they keep the discussion moving forward and make Kandi’s Land the great place that it is. However, please could I respectfully ask that you ensure that what you write on my posts doesn’t detract from the message I’m trying to get across and doesn’t imply that my life is in some way suboptimal just because I choose to live it in a certain way? Thank you.

      1. Amanda,
        First of all I do understand your point of view , don’t forget I’ve lived it myself , I also understand the part of your life you’re trying to protect . I tried so hard for over 40 years but it wasn’t to be .

        Please accept my intention were not intended to offend on the comments of cancer sufferers , at least four ladies in my painting group have had surgery for breats cancer . I have a very good friend who is trying to live life to the full but knows she is on borrowed time because her cancer has returned so her conversations are very open and honest and she has made the comment herself over her femininity and the lack of it .

        Over the years I have known and still do many transgender people and also some transexuals , the majority live in degrees of denial , very few have total freedom to live the life they wish , which has surprised me . I admit my life still has some restrictions which hurt deeply at times but I have to learn to live with them . I learnt very early on that you have often have to read between the lines to discover the full facts , if I’ve misread your’s then I apologise for that . It took me a long time to be truly honest with myself which meant I could then be honest with other people which means it’s not always possible to totally protect them from the truth good or bad .

        Love is wonderful if you both share it equally , to discover after 40+ years how unequal it was hurts deeply , my intention was never to hurt my wife sadly she didn’t feel the same way . I sincerly hope other people take more care so they don’t suffer that deep hurt .

  6. Amanda, I loved reading your post and also your previous 101s. I also enjoyed reading all the replies you received. I guess I have been on both sides–wanting to wear the dresses, heels etc. and also realizing the need to blend in. Luckily, I was able to dress up for several concerts and musicals i attended. When I do shop in a more toned down mode, I take shoes and stockings in my large purse so if I try something on, I can get the full effect.
    Thanks also to all you responders.

    1. Donna, thank you for taking the time to leave a comment and for your kind words. I think that part of the enjoyment that we can derive from this side of ourselves is the ability to choose an outfit appropriate for whatever it is we’re going to do. As a closeted CDer, I had a lot of pleasure dressing for myself but since I broke free, the idea of thinking about what would be suitable for the surroundings has taken things to another level. And, ironically, by dialling back on the femme, my confidence grew as I realised that to anyone who saw me at any distance other than close quarters, I was just another woman in the crowd.

      Great tip about packing the glamour in your purse for try ons too!

  7. Amanda, I think going out in the community is such a wonderful experience. The first time I went out was for only a few hours, and I was so nervous. Once I notice no one was paying me much attention, I became more comfortable and started to enjoy myself. My next trip was to Seattle to meet an online friend. I expressed myself as Julie for two days, it was such a wonderful experience and loved spending it with a girlfriend. I had no trouble in the hotel or in large crowds, even had some compliments nails and eyes. My next two trips were to Palm Spring to meet another girlfriend. This time I drove from Las Vegas to Palm Springs as Julie. I stopped and had lunch, even used the women’s restroom with no problems. I was misgendered by a waiter once and on the tram in palm spring a man wanted to know if we would like him to take a picture of us, he said we could label it tranny’s on a tram. He was very nice and was good natured about it, and we talked to him and he thought it was wonderful that we could express who we were. I now have the confidence to go out anytime.

    1. Julie, thanks for taking the time to comment.

      I’m impressed that your first outing was ‘only’ for a few hours – mine was about five minutes!! But what you wrote serves as a great inspiration for anyone trying to pluck up the courage to break free themself – no one pays much attention and it’s a truly liberating and enjoyable experience.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Featured Posts

Get The Latest Updates

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Sign up for the first look at Kandi’s outfits, blog posts, and product recommendations.

Keep Reading

More From Amanda J.