• This topic has 43 replies, 24 voices, and was last updated 1 year ago by Hippie.
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    • #720919

      An often used expression here on CDH is “she/I didn’t sign up for this.  We didn’t disclose this part of ourselves for many reasons.  I thought ,as many of us did, that I could just put crossdressing in the rear view mirror and will it out of existence.  I also felt embarrassed and ashamed and had a strong fear of rejection . Your reasons may be similar or not.  Most, if not all of our wives, feel that this is something we should have discussed with them early on in our relationship so let’s step into our time machine and turn back the clock at least hypothetically.

      What if we had been open about our crossdressing so an informed decision could have been made by both parties?  How do you think that would have turned out for your relationship?  Do you have regrets and wish you really could go back and do things differently?  For simplicity I worded this poll for crossdresser response but I am very interested in responses from  wives as well.

      • This topic was modified 1 year ago by BillieJay.
    • #720930

      I voted “would not have married me” because when I came out to her thats exactly what she said.

    • #720934

      Very good question Michelle.

      My selection was “other” and the reason is because I did tell her about my crossdressing very soon after we became engaged. However, back then I really thought that once I was married, my drive to crossdress would be gone forever. (Yeah, right!)
      So, had I know better then, I would still have told her, and add that it was a part of me that wasn’t going away. And then I’m pretty sure she would have broken our engagement.
      But I didn’t know better, and now 30 years later I can tell I have some regrets on how I handled things, sure! But I thank God and wouldn’t change anything because we still love each other, have two awesome children, and have lead life being there for each other, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer…

      • #720991

        Hi Gabriela,

        Same here.  I couldn’t tell her the truth because I didn’t know the truth but if I had known it and shared we probably wouldn’t have gotten married.  Fifty-four years later we are both glad we did.




    • #720938
      Liz K
      Managing Ambassador

      My wife wouldn’t have married me if she’d known.  And I wouldn’t have married her if I’d known she’d react so badly.  The last 3 years we were together were awful.

      Subsequent girlfriends took the news better but I doubt they would’ve gotten into a relationship if I’d told them early on.


    • #720978
      Caty Ryan

      I told my ex shortly before our first child was born. And he’s 50 this year. From that day on she hated anything to do with Caty with a passion and eventually that was a reason for the divorce.

      She is from a quite religious/conservative family and if I’d told her before we married she would have run the proverbial country mile.

      My current loving SO found out the hard way. I left some jewellery out where I “should not have oughta”. As I have oft repeated here on CDH, “She knows but does not want to know”.

      She’s just gone out for a few hours and I have some of Caty’s laundry to do.





      • #721041

        Thank you Caty, I can relate to “she’s gone out for a few hours” Leonara “can do what she has to do”

        Regards,    Leonara

    • #720988

      Great question.  First thought is she would not have married me my.  But then 25 years ago the was not a lot of information out there about us and honestly I really didn’t know who I was and even be able to articulate it.  It’s taken me many years to accept myself and I’m still on the journey on trying to figure out who I am.  That’s hard for any spouse to handle.

      During our marriage we developed a deep love for each other.  If a couple doesn’t have that as a base then I think most would pass on marrying us.  Maybe the few that are adventurous or maybe a little bi might take the plunge but how do you agree to work with a spouse that you just are getting married to.  It’s a big test of your love very early into the marriage if you reveal it then.  That doesn’t mean it’s good to not tell her though.  I think sooner is better.

      I believe if you were to ask my wife today she would tell you that we are closer then ever and there are aspects of “Carole” that she likes.  At the same time she is scared as she doesn’t know how much she can accept and if her feelings will change at some point.  So that leads us to where we are…we are taking it day by day…not fretting about the future because other things can affect what happens to us.  Focus on communication, listening, understanding, assuming innocence and see of you can figure it out together vs separate.  It takes a strong woman to do that.  I admire my wife for her efforts knowing that there is no guarantees.

      Wishing love to all going through this !


      ps there is a great article on acceptance by Lisa Wilson…take a look and read it.  It has a great perspective.


      • #720997

        Hi Carole,

        You have definitely put your finger on the catch 22 here.  It takes a long time together to develop the kind of love and respect that would cause the typical woman to love and support a crossdressing husband. If that deep a love is there it can all be worked out somehow together.  The marriage started however under false pretenses although it may have not been deliberate since most of us did not really understand that this would be who we are for life.



        • #721009

          I don’t think that we should have zero guilt but saying it started under false pretenses to me is maybe a little aggressive but of course I don’t want to look as a bad person so maybe my defense is too self serving 🤭.  Before you got married….did you love her with all your heart? Would you have jumped in front of a car to save her? Did you really understand who you were ?  So many of us thought it would go away.

          I felt I owed it to my wife to tell her as she was young enough to go find someone else if she wanted.  That doesn’t mean I wanted to lose her more so it had to be her choice.  I finally accepted myself and at that point I felt I owed it to her to tell her.

          There is no perfect answer to this dilemma but it’s good that everyone shares their experience and opinion.  That is the best thing about CDH – I devoured all the articles and they all made me think and helped me figure out what I needed to do.  There was no plan to copy and execute on…it’s about you thinking it through and figuring out what direction to go in.  The love and support that I have gotten has been amazing that’s why I find it important to pay it forward and to help others.  Love u all!

          • #721013

            Hi Carole,

            I should have chosen better words to express my thoughts on the catch22 dilemma.

            Thanks for the heads up on the Lisa Wilson article it is excellent.



          • #721020

            Omg I’m not being critical of words you us3d more so to make sure you are not too hard on yourself!

      • #721005
      • #721034

        Thank you Carole for your insight… you are right on..   in my experience we are married 52 years but I didn’t fully embrace my feminine persona until 40 years into our marriage…I decided not to reveal my CD because of embarrassment, ashamed, and rejection..about 5 years ago my private CD session was “interrupted” when Kathy came home early and she “met” Leonara for the first time…we had the talk .. ask me to seek counseling (which I did alone) … our compromise: for me not to dress when she is home and we sleep in separate bedrooms….. my therapist helped me accept my feminine alter ego and Kathy plays cards 2x a week to “do what you have to do”. I guess to paraphrase one of the questions:   I think we have negotiated a good balance to stay together.  Thank you for listening ladies

        Hugs, Leonara

    • #721003

      Hi Michelle i didn’t vote, I’m sure my wife wouldn’t have married me if she had known i was a crossdresser, she has told me a few times that she doesn’t understand why some men want to dress up like women, if i was to come out to her now I’m sure she would feel betrayed that i had kept it hidden from her all our married life X

      Hugs Rozalyn X 🎀

      • #721006

        Hi Rozalyn,

        I completely understand.  I think in some cases living the life of a spy is the most reasonable course of action.



    • #721026

      There is no way my wife would have married me.

      While she is somewhat tolerant of my dressing our

      marriage is really just a marriage of convenience.

      I am grateful she didn’t out my to the world when

      i came out to her 12 years ago(we had then been married 27 years)

      In hindsight i think she regrets continuing in a friendship

      and not a real marriage.

    • #721028
      J J

      My wife knew, to the extent that I knew. I wasn’t really into dressing when we got married other then wearing her panties and she knew that. As I developed more into a full CD, slowly, she knew each step along the way. Her response has always been it “they are just clothes”. I am the same man she married, I just happen to wear femme items at times. I have the most amazing wife, and we have had an extremely strong marriage for nearly forty years now. She accepts that I like to wear such things but doesn’t know why, but then neither do I, other then I just enjoy it. She feels if I enjoy it, then way not? There are worse things for a marriage then a husband putting on a dress.

      • #721071

        Hi JJ,

        What a wonderful relationship.  Most women are not able to view it this way so you have someone special there.



    • #721042
      Amy Myers

      I never hid my fondness for wearing my wife’s bras and panties and this went on for years and years, adding a few things here and there.

      It was about 5 years ago I really got bit by this, or shall I put it like a different way, I finally gave in and started to dress up completely. makeup, then started going out. This is what unsettled her the most, as she felt like she was going to lose me, but when she realized I wasn’t going away, nor did I want to transition everything settled down and we are good together.


      • #721076

        Hi Amy,

        I also have recently wanted to dress fully with wig and makeup and go out in the world.  My wife is very afraid she is losing me and that I will want to transition at some point.  I have no such desire but then I never thought I would want to go out in the world fully dressed ether so I can understand her fear. We are still working through it.



        • #721580
          Amy Myers


          My wife would certainly understand! I went through a similar period thinking as you are, “How will I feel in another year?” Though I go out often fully dressed I still don’t want to transition, and it’s not just fear. Some days I’m quite happy to male me, other days I long to dress up and be Amy, even if it’s quite casually at home.

          I hope it all works out well for you and your wife!


    • #721046

      My wife knew that I had a fondness for wearing women’s lingerie prior to our marriage, but assumed it was just a sexual “kink” for me. If I am honest, at that point in our relationship, that is probably where I was in my CD journey as well. As time passed, I came to accept that wearing women’s clothing was not just a kink, but an integral part of who I am. As this changed for me, I wish I had been more up front with her about this part of who I am (but this realization came long after we were married). I think she would have been more accepting of all of this had I been straight with her as I finally acknowledged this part of myself. I do believe that if my realization of this part of me had come prior to our marriage, we would have found an acceptable compromise that would be acceptable for both of us, and we would still have been married (at least I hope so).

      Such an interesting question that really got me to self-reflect.



      • #721099

        Thank you for sharing Emily.  I think a little self reflection from time to time is good for the soul:)



    • #721081
      Roberta Broussard
      Duchess - Annual

      My first wife of 19 years had chronic depression that started in our 2nd year together. She pretty much killed any affection I had with her personality issues. I stayed with her until she was well. I then quit trying to keep us together and when I quit, that was it. As she put no effort into us. I remarried 2 yrs later. My second wife of 16 years died from a brain Tumor.

      I had an attraction to women’s under things that carried over from when I was growing up. After I first married during her many years of reclusiveness and bouncing personality. I would from time to time enjoy putting on some lingerie but only briefly. My waking hours were pretty full. I was raising two daughters and many bills to pay. My second wife was very much an active participant in our marriage and putting something on only happened a few times.

      My present wife I dated exclusively from the start for over 10 years before we decided to marry 4 yrs. ago. I had no desire to put anything on until about two years ago. I don’t really know why but I just pulled on a pair of her panties one day.  I don’t fully understand why but it’s like the dam broke. I suppose it’s the result of keeping this bottled up inside me all of my life. As no one knew my secret.

      When my present wife discovered a piece of clothing that wasn’t hers. We had the talk. She made the comment. I wish I knew this before we got married. I almost terminated this marriage right there. Instead, I went on to try to explain to her that I wasn’t doing it back then. It had only been an occasional thing over those many years before I even met her. She is like most of us who have had many years of prejudices programed into us, about what a CD is.

      She ultimately came to prefer the DADT basis that we now operate under. Its working ok but for now she just isn’t ready to talk about it. So, I wait until I can bring it up again. I don’t want her to be fearful of this.

      • #721101

        Thank you for sharing your story Roberta.  One of the things I’m learning from this post is that many of us have significantly changed in our desire/need to dress over time and all the implications that has for our relationships.



    • #721100
      Patty Phose

      My wife met Patty a couple of weeks after we met. I had been dressing and going out for three years before we met.

      I was dressed at a party the night before. I got home late and took off my clothes. I figured in the morning I would put them away or wash them.

      I didn’t expect her to show up at my place that next morning. I was happy to see her and let her in. When she saw the girl’s clothes lying about, she was not happy.She apologized for just showing up and was going to leave. I asked her to stay. I told her the clothes were mine. I enjoyed wearing them and liked to go out wearing them. I was wearing them at a party last night and got in late. I was going to put them away in the morning.

      She gave me a look like she didn’t believe me. She asked me to show her. I took the clothes in the bedroom, put them on and got all made up. When I walked out she was shocked. She could not believe how pretty and sexy I was and how different I looked. She said we have to go out. She wants to get some summer dresses. That afternoon we went out as girlfriends. So, Patty has been part of our life from the beginning.

      • #721102

        What a wonderful story Patty.  A real life CD fairy tale.




    • #721193

      I was with my ex for 25 years, my wife was with hers for 10. I think because it was the second time for both of us, we had many frank discussions about our pasts, desires, peccadilloes, kinks, etc. We were also head over heels for each other. Given her unfailing support and encouragement on our journey of my crossdressing and gender identity, I’m pretty sure she’d have married me anyway. I’ll have to ask!

      UPDATE: She said she would have, without hesitation. Yay!

    • #721207

      Hi Michelle
      My wife knows nothing about Sarah and never will, she has always let it be known she doesn’t like anything male to female. Iv’e been crossdressing for over 50 Years now and in our fortieth
      year of marriage, we definitely wouldn’t be married or together had she known. My view is you have to do what makes you happy, so do it without upsetting anyone else and as long as what they don’t know doesn’t hurt.
      Sarah xx

      • #721232

        Hi Sarah,

        You won’t get any push back from me.  You have a 40 year track record of a successful marriage and have been able to give Sarah the required time as well.  I’m sure it hasn’t always been perfect but what relationship is?



    • #721212

      She wouldn’t have married me, there’s no question about it. Of course, in retrospect, that would have been nice to know three decades ago.

    • #721219

      Michelle the cross dressing was never truly the problem in our relationship. Even though I felt I was honest with my beloved before we married the true issues lay within me. I had never been truly honest with myself. I wasn’t honest about being transgender to myself. I wasn’t honest about many things to myself that led to poor decisions and many rough times in our relationship. If I would have taken the time to truly get to know myself and what I wanted and needed from life I would have been a much better husband. We have grown together and the dressing has proven to be such a small part of the big picture of our relationship.

      • #721234

        Hi Carolyne,

        A nice self reflection and aren’t things so much easier to see and understand in hind sight.  Sounds like you have a great relationship going and I’m happy for you.




    • #721222
      Lara Muir
      Baroness - Annual

      I voted she would not have married me. We were, and still are crazy about one another, however, almost 40 years ago there was a certain stigma attached to what we do. It was illegal in places.
      I’m lucky in that I didn’t have an urge to dress until much later on. Four years after discovering this side of myself I am close to having that talk. It terrifies me though.
      I doubt she would want to leave, but what could happen is quite scary!


    • #721629

      I voted other. I am not sure what our relationship would have ended up looking like if I had been open with my SO (and more importantly, myself) early on but, I do think she would have continued to date me after knowing ( and she vehemently agrees).


      She has lamented a little that I did not tell her when we first started dating so we could have gone to the clubs together and what not while we were young and sexy 😀 but, we are happy to have something new and fun to explore too. So, while it is impossible to tell whether this would have radically changed our relationship in the long term; my exploration of gender and sexuality then rather than now would not have been any kind of deal breaker for her either.


      There are a lot of things we “didn’t sign up for” when we started in our relationship that we have had to deal with. But we love each other, accept each other, and work together to build a life we both feel fulfilled in. I am her biggest fan and supported and she is mine. Neither one of us could stand forcing the other to be less than they can/want to be. That is not to say that these things didn’t change the relationship but, how dull would it be to have the same relationship now that we had 20+ years ago?


    • #721723

      I was open from the very start of our relationship I know I could not continue to hide who I truly am.  Life is so short and I did not want to cheat either one of us from being happy.  I am so lucky to have an accepting wife my life is so much better than I could have ever dreamed.

      • #722242

        You have a special lady there Shelly.  I’m very happy for you.



    • #722092

      I didn’t sign up for my ex to be a ‘B’ either.

    • #722211
      J J

      We did all “sign up for this”, at least those of us who are married and exchanges vows. Most have said “for better or worse”, et cetera, and what that encompasses is that we change through our lives and our  marriages/relationships.

      I am not the same person I was 38 years ago when I got married, neither is my wife. We all change, some for the better, some for the worst, but mostly just different, neither better or worse. I didn’t know my wife was going to become an avid gardener who spends more on plants then J do on lingerie. She didn’t know I would become passionate about skiing, but I did. I have been upfront and honest out skiing and dressing as they developed, just as she has about her gardening…they are all just things we like to do. Why do we always insist on making it more complicated then that?

    • #734904

      I’ve been in two relationships and I told them right away and it was a non issue. I’ve met a few other women I was intrested in and they were conflicted and it didn’t go any further. I’m a crossdresser at home, undersress, publice every now and again. I can’t be with a woman if she has reservations about crossdressing. I only act female when fully dressed. When I was in my two serious relationships, for example it “normal” for me to where female attire while having morning coffee or just being with each other around the house. Even a late night walk around the neighborhood

    • #741252

      Heck my wife knew I dressed before we even starting dating.

      Now my ex-wife that’s another story. Our marriage wouldn’t have worked out no matter what. Even if she knew I dressed before hand.

      Biggest reason was she was a drug user and a cheater.

      Funny thing is I knew she was a F%&k-up, but my young stupid self thought I could fix and save her.

      Here is a tip, if you think you can fix someone, better move on. Cause its not going to happen endless they want to change themselves


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