Are you Proud, Ashamed, or somewhere in between of being a Crossdresser?

Some might find it an easy answer, but for most of us, I don’t think so. Like many aspects of this life, the truth is more muddled. It is for me, and it has evolved over time. Oh yes; for most of my life, I was ashamed of being a Dresser. For years, (read decades,) I thought I must be the only one in the world like this. Being a child of the early 50’s, I came of age in the 60’s within a small, conservative town. Any talk of what is now called an alternative lifestyle was met with distain, if not outright disapproval. Never mind that regular sex was never discussed or talked about in my circles either. So, I always tried to look like a good boy, and mostly I think I succeeded.

This was so long before the internet. Even though I have now learned there were clubs back then, which provided support and companionship for those folks who didn’t follow conventional dress codes, I hadn’t been aware of any. I felt alone. The pleasure I derived from dressing caused considerable guilt. Silly as all that now seems, given the experience I had over the intervening decades, it was true for the times.

Human nature through the ages hasn’t really changed, though our behavior is modified by the various cultural norms of the times. Basic nature was cast thousands of years ago—for better or for worse.

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In the early 70’s, an older friend (female) took me to a few drag shows and other events in Toronto. I think she believed I needed an “education.” It was something like that for sure! Those female impersonators were good. She got a chuckle out of my ogling them, and then had fun at my expense, spoiling it by saying, “There’re guys.” I was astonished, as they didn’t look like guys!

Not much later, I found myself working and dealing with customers in the arts community of Toronto. They obviously had an alternative lifestyle, not that it was as open as it is now, but it was there. Generally, the only ones that I knew were gay and lesbians, though a few I realize now were leaning toward being trans.

Back then, a few of these folks seemed to be prominently putting themselves “out there,” and they had a degree of pride to who they were. They weren’t ashamed of themselves. Not how it used to be when it was illegal to have sex with another person of your own birth gender.

There are many of us completely and totally in the closet, and that’s fine, but how do you feel about yourself? If you are here on CDH, you at least realize there are many of us in the world. Although in some circles, this lifestyle is still considered rather taboo, but at least you know you are not alone. Many are living life as the gender they feel suits them best. Not to forget those folks who don’t yet know what they really are as they try to figure it out. Wherever you are in the spectrum, it’s just fine.

En Femme Style

Getting back to the question; Do you find yourself ashamed of your love to crossdress or do you perhaps feel a little bit proud?

I find myself on this journey, having run the gamut from my earliest days of dressing, (being so totally ashamed of myself.) From hiding my mom’s things back in the dirty clothes and not wanting to do it again to promising more than once, “This is the last time I’m doing this.” Of course, it wasn’t true!

The next stage was becoming a slightly reluctant and closeted dresser. When I let myself go, I enjoyed the thrill of dressing, finding happiness and not shame when going back to my male self. This lasted some years. A couple of years ago, I was bitten by the urge to completely dress up; I’d had these thoughts way back in the 90’s, but felt it was too far out of bounds to actually act on. Those feelings of guilt and shame resurfaced again, as did the thoughts, “What’s wrong with me,” “I’m enjoying this too much,” and “Why am I enjoying this so much.”

As mentioned in previous articles, in the last year, I’ve gone from not “passing” at all to learning makeup skills, buying better foundation garments, clothes, and learning feminine behavior so that I now generally pass without trouble. I’ve also learned that if I don’t pass, then so what? I am what I am and nothing anyone says is going to change that.

It’s not that I have tough skin, not at all. I’m a sensitive soul who can be hurt very easy. I suspect many, if not the vast majority here are like that, too. It’s simply a part of our feminine make-up, which might be why we are so afraid of going out and being ourselves.

Through this transition, as it were, I’ve come to some other realizations. I’ve found myself actually committing the other sin—Pride. Not in my pretty clothes, or nice wig, but in who and what I am. I am not ashamed of myself. Not everyone in my life knows, but the circle is widening.

This notion was brought home as a female friend of mine, who introduced Amy to one of her friends, had said how amazing it is that I am out and about fully dressed and being me instead of hiding. Honestly, I think she paid me a better compliment than I deserved, but it did get me thinking about how I had changed over time.

Through my outings and travels as Amy, I’ve met many people. I find so much happiness and joy, and yes, a certain amount of pride in what I am.

As you continue to dress to whatever vision of femininity you believe suits you, don’t be ashamed of yourself, but instead find happiness and at least a bit of pride in what you are. I don’t feel as if I’m anything special. My hope for all is that if I can, maybe you can find the way, too.

Where do you find yourself on this trajectory?
How do you feel after you have had time to dress up?
Are you comfortable sharing this part of you with any others in your life?

En Femme Style

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Amy Myers

I'm 60+, hetro, married, and love dressing up! I keep saying and feeling like I'm new to this, but I have dressed from time to time since my pre teens, but just late 2018 it seems to have become of a bigger part of me, rather than just a role I played from time to time. I'm interested in music, cars, photography, and plus other interests.

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April (Pacific Princess)
Active Member

Nice article. I remember as a young child in the 60s having no clue that there were others like me. I felt ashamed and nervous every time I dressed. But it was also a thrilling feeling. Now I don’t really have any of those feelings. It took me most of my life to get to this point, but now I just feel relaxed and content. I have no problems being out and about and I have found that my confidence in who I am makes all the difference in the world. Do I feel proud to be a crossdresser? Not… Read more »

Diane Crow
Trusted Member
3 years ago

Thank you so much for sharing the story of your progression. As I think back on my life, in my youngest days I loved looking at my moms Glamor mags and the Sears and Roebuck catalog looking at the cloths, shoes and undergarments. I loved the style and design. I would even try on my moms panty hose. Over the years on occasion I would try on one of my wife’s dresses when home alone. As a photographer I was ask to photograph an lgbtq event and while I was in my ubiquitous photographers black on black pants and shirts.… Read more »

Diane Crow
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  Amy Myers

Thanks Amy, I so appreciate your thoughts and really loved your story and the progression you have made with your wife.

Stevie Steiner
Managing Ambassador
3 years ago

Pride. I would say that I am proud of myself for embracing and accepting my CD femme side. But I think yes, ‘ pride cometh before the fall ‘, and I do not want to fall, and I will not fall. Pride in oneself can be a seed from which bad things grow.
I am Happy to be a crossdresser. And Proud of the fact that I say that.

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Jane Borden
3 years ago

Really useful article-shows we are all different and yet so similar. I was ashamed and guilty every time I dressed-well, after I had dressed to be honest. I vowed to dispose of all my lingerie. But back came all those feelings; just glancing into a lingerie shop and I would get so excited and back into the cycle I went. Nw, I’m still guilty, but at deceiving my SO, which I do know is wrong. I visit a lady who gets turned on by my dressing, or rather her dressing me and then making me up. We do go out… Read more »

3 years ago

Dear Diane I loved your article where you have pinpointed the real issue of being happy in comparison with Shame …Yes we as crossdressers are afraid to show our real persona where tagging is the main issue in society which a man is tagged as a man and not allowing him to transfer to another personality becoming a taboo ,,,Especially if you are living in a very closed traditional society ( middle East ) of not allowing any trans gender differences by banishing you into havoc and criminal judgement to society .this will make it totally impossible to go… Read more »

Trusted Member
2 years ago

I love CDH because the reading and writing I do here helps with introspecting into who am I really. This post is awesome! Am I proud?! To me, I am proud of this different perspective that being a CD has given me, the people and encounters I’ve had, the things that have opened to me. But, it’s more complicated than that… To my SO, I am a bit ashamed. I dragged her into this because I was too ashamed and didn’t understand myself enough to realize this was more than just an occasional hobby that started way before meeting her.… Read more »

Holly Morris
Holly Morris
2 years ago

Amy, thanks for this article! Being roughly the same age, I know exactly what you’re talking about and agree completely with what you wrote. Am I proud of being a crossdresser? I am now, but like you, that was not always the case. For all of us though, regardless of where we are in this crazy journey, if we want to be able to live our lives without driving ourselves bonkers, we have to accept this part of who we are and learn to both live with, and love her!

Last edited 2 years ago by Holly Morris
Active Member
1 year ago

I personally am proud to be who I am past, future, present. At 12 years old I stood in a large full length mirror and fell in love with the girl staring back with both tears in my eyes and a smile from one side of my face to the other. Even through all the remarks from kids at school and in the neighborhood as well as practically anywhere I went then or go now the stares, silent remarks, compliments from many I remain proud to be Jackie, no guilt, no shame, no fear, just allot of Pride & Satisfaction.… Read more »

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