Conformity (II): the heart of it

I am aching to be out in my new finery.  I love the skirts i’ve found: i’m happier, slimmer, better trimmed than i have been in years.

Not very feminine yet.  Of course i’m not.  i’m only just under way. 

i have no doubt that what i propose will attracts stares.  A few glares too, no doubt.  So what?  In time, as i get closer to who i want to be, such attention would be a cruel reminder that i had not succeeded.  For now, though, i am happy to be a guy in a skirt.  Nothing more, nothing less.

For my partner, this is a step too far.  She can accept – she thinks – “it”, by which she means the transitin process, both as a whole and as constituent parts.

She is not sure she can face those same embarrassing stares.  That, for her, might be too much.

But what if i had decided to dress this way anyway?  That, then, would be OK.  It is, somehow, the outward appearance combined with her inner knowledge of what it signifies that makes all the difference.

I am mystified by this analysis.

jane

3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    debz furneaux said,

    apropo of nothing really – i decided to ask my son oliver a question about you – and your feminity comment – ‘not very yet’ is portentous. i asked simply did he remember you and he said yes he did, i then asked if he thought there was anything a little odd about you, sorry i couldnt find a better phrase – and this was his answer which you might find interesting ‘yes’ he said ‘ he seemed very feminine’!! not gay, or camp – the word he used was feminine – so maybe you are more girlie ‘naturally’ than u imagine.! not quite sure what u make of that – i didnt divulge anything further, but i thought u would find it an interesting comment. his observation suprised me, most 20yr old males cant see further than the contents of either their beer glass or their trousers, so perhaps i didnt do such a bad job bringin him up!!

  2. 2

    Wonderer said,

    It would be nice if we lived in a society where people wouldn’t stare or glare; where diversity was normal. It’s our human nature to notice the unusual; “deviations” from the norm attract our attention; in cognitive psychology terms, our sensory and perceptive systems find the differences from stored patterns more salient and direct our attention accordingly.

    I guess it’s *unwanted* attention which feels bad, with feelings of judgementalism or intrusion. I wonder how you’d feel about a respectful, admiring gaze? Perhaps someone thinking how well chosen the colour of your nail varnish is?

    I guess if you seem to present highly salient signals, then people will to some extent be involved, affected. The way we present in different public or social contexts is in that subtle hinterland betwen the purely private “being yourself” and the socially responsible angle of communicating with others.

    But what is highly salient in one age, one culture, one social context, can become less so in different settings, particularly when the salience comes from difference, from unusuality and unfamiliairty with diversity (rather than from – say – exterme brightness or loudness). What may seem fine in a crowded shopping mall may feel different in a church congregation.

    Inbetween times and places can be awkward, painful even. And not everyone who presents differently sees their role as educator.

    As for partner, she is going through her own process, her transition, getting to know how to be herself with a changed you. You know she’s an utter gem and is being fantastic beyond measure in what might seem to her to be bewildering times. She is about as broad minded and open as they come. This has been very sudden for her, like a whirlwind; a huge change that affects and changes her as well. All adaptation takes time. I hope it will continue to be a good time for you both.
    🙂

  3. 3

    Wonderer said,

    P.S. I’m now led to believe that at the moment strangers might not admire the tastefulness of your choice of nail varnish😉

    (Retires from the blog quickly, wondering what impact this revelation might have🙂 ).

    P.P.S. Hope you have a wonderful day tomorrow.


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