The ‘urge to purge’ is a terrible thing, I’ve done it several times myself and always regretted it very quickly afterwards.
For me, I think, the purging always came from a fear of going too far and accidentally being caught out. I would live quite comfortably as Rachel, surrounded by my femme things dotted around my flat but then, there would come a time when somebody would be coming to visit and when I needed to present myself as male. Much of the time I would just pack my clothes away neatly, ensure there were no panties hung up to dry and that my make-up was neatly in a drawer somewhere.
But, occassionally, that wouldn’t be enough for me and I’d develop an irrational fear of people (often my parents) going through my wardrobes and cupboards demanding to know why they were full of skirts and dresses. For some reason, no amount of logic would persuade me that such an event was infinitely improbable and a deep set fear of being labelled all of those negative words (which anyone growing up in the UK in the 1970s and 1980s will know) shamed me into gathering ever last trace of Rachel and dumping it as far from my house as possible. I remember waking up the day after such a purge, after my parents had gone, feeling utterly devastated and empty and, of course, I immediately set out once more to repurchase that which had been lost – usually a bra and matching panties and then the whole ensemble and accessories afterwards.
Oddly though, that cycle and the pain it caused (not to mention the expense!), finally taught me to accept myself – despite the shame and maybe even disgust that I felt towards myself at the time of purging, I learned to realise that Rachel wasn’t going away anytime soon and that, in general, I was happier as Rachel and once that realisation happened, the purging ceased.
A few years on and having been diverted by ‘life’ in all its varied glory, I’m learning that lesson again 🙂