It was an average summer evening two years ago, when my phone buzzed in its normal way alerting me of a text, while the message was fairly ordinary, after reading it I knew my life would likely change forever. It was my first contact with another cd away from the safety of this site and the moment when real life and my CDH persona would intersect. One text that opened up a new world, a world of acceptance and fellowship I never thought possible.

The text read “Hi Joe, I think it’s an excellent idea, talk more about it soon! -Tim”. I was hoping this message would come but after receiving it couldn’t help but wonder, what had I done? She knew my male name and my number, and we were planning on meeting one another soon, a sense of regret filled my mind. Had I gotten myself into something I wasn’t prepared for? Was I ready to meet someone else like me? Had I exposed myself to physical danger or even the possibility of outing myself?

My curiosity won out over my fear and eventually, we agreed to meet in male mode at a bar. Tim aka Karen was a pleasant, well-adjusted person, nothing about her appearance or demeanor betrayed her as anything but “normal”. We had a great conversation, talked about our lives, the origins of our femme sides, we were just two people chatting like everyone else in the place. I began to feel like maybe I wasn’t so odd? Maybe I could find others like me and ease some of the loneliness and isolation I had felt for so long.

Shortly after this meeting, we found an opportunity to dress together and as she said “simply coexist”. This was an irresistible opportunity for me but I confess to being very nervous. I was a closeted cd, I had never been seen by anyone, and above all I wanted to protect myself emotionally. What if she laughed at me? I would have been devastated, fortunately, that didn’t happen. Karen showed me nothing but kindness we talked the night away over drinks and were joined by a third cd via video conference. It was a magical night for me, and within a few months, the two of us met with another who was traveling through our area. Janet was an awesome person and more experienced than either of Karen or I. We both learned a lot from her, most importantly that the crossdressing community is a loving and accepting group. Janet had met with others and was traveling to another such meetup. I believe Janet had an impact on us both that day, she motivated me to leave my safe little bubble and gave me the nudge to attend my first Keystone Conference.

En Femme Style

Keystone was even better than my wildest dreams, I met many others all of which were lovely, and I cemented some virtual friendships by finally meeting many CDH people in person as Melanie. Fast forward another year and my second conference, which was equally unforgettable, especially because I was emboldened knowing I had real friends who wanted to see me again and others I was looking forward to meeting for the first time. I had found my tribe; I had secured a group of folks I could talk with honestly without judgment. We speak on the phone or exchange texts regularly; they know me in a way few do. I can’t overstate how comforting it has been to me, having them is like Chicken Soup for the Crossdressers Soul.

While the names of both Karen and Janet have been changed for this article, I want to specifically thank them both, as well as all of the others I’ve met along the way that have been so kind to me.  I joined this site two and a half years ago as a scared and lonely cd but now things are considerably better. I’m part of a community and have been lucky enough to forge some real friendships. This site and the people here have paved the way for me, but I can trace much of it back to one text and a leap of faith, going to meet that stranger. A stranger who became a friend and opened the door to meeting more and ultimately helping me to feel comfort and at peace as a member of this wonderful community.

I’d love to know if you have met other CDs? Do you consider any especially close to you? Has their friendship helped you? If you haven’t, what holds you back? Thanks in advance for your comments.

Sincerely, Melanie

EnFemme

 

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Marianne
Ambassador
Active Member
8 months ago

Lovely article Melanie, and it was great seeing you and so many others I count as friends at my first visit at Keystone.

Marianne

Staci Gal
Lady
Active Member
8 months ago

A few months ago, I met another CD from this site. We both were nervous but in the end, for me at least, it was a wonderful experience. Meeting another like minded person in a safe non threatening place, and talking about our common interest, crossdressing, was fun and educational. If the opportunity exists meeting another crossdresser can be a very enlightening experience. We have plans to meet again, hopefully soon.

Alex Kline
Member
Alex Kline
8 months ago

Such a great article mel! Thanks so much for sharing part of your journey!

Nancy Walton
Member
8 months ago

Are you all single? The reason I ask that question is that I am a SO of a CD and none of you are mentioning your SO. It’s as if that person doesn’t exist! This is my main complaint of men who seek out the companionship of other CD: you don’t think of how it affects your loved ones. I guess it’s the dreaded “Pink Fog." My CD SO reached out to another CD by messaging and email, and before I knew it, that person was so important in his life that I felt I was being pushed out of… Read more »

Carole Corbett
Duchess
Active Member
8 months ago

I thought this was a great article and frankly shows the value of a place like CDH. So many of us live our lives in fear and in the closet that connecting with someone can make a huge difference. It’s hard to survive through this alone. Connecting to a community is essential in my mind to your sanity and growth in understanding and accepting who you are, it was interesting to hear a SO’s perspective from Nancy. If you want your relationship to survive, like Mel said, you need to make sure your relationship and she is a priority. Communication… Read more »

Deborah Sullivan
Lady
Trusted Member
8 months ago

Great article and know the experience expressed

Amberly Winslet
Member
Amberly Winslet
8 months ago

Mel – Great article, and thank you for sharing it! I have met one other CD (in guy mode) and we went shopping to a thrift store. I was so nervous, but it went well….

Andrea Smith
Member
Member
2 months ago

Melanie — this resonated with me very deeply. I found myself saying “…that’s just how I feel," and “…that is exactly what I have experienced," at several points along the way. I am so glad I read this article and you shared your experience with me as I am about to embark on my first Keystone Conference. I hope to meet you there along with many others from this wonderful community.

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