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Sally's Trans World


Sally Stone

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M.

 

The term bigender works for me because after taking the time to explore my feelings, I kept coming to the same conclusion, that while I felt an overpowering need to express my inner woman, I also enjoyed being a man.  I realized that my personality was equal parts man and woman and to be happy and fulfilled, I needed to express both sides.  There are challenges living a life of two-gender expression, but I'll expand on some of those in future posts.  

 

Hugs,

 

Sally

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11 minutes ago, Mmindy said:

Sally, a moderator can edit the post adding "Post 3" if you would like. Let me know and I'll be glad to take care of it. That way your numbering system is in tact.

Mindy, that would be so awesome of you.  Please make the edit for me, and thank you so much!

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13 minutes ago, Sally Stone said:

Please make the edit for me, and thank you so much!

You're welcome Sally,

 

Hugs,

 

Mindy🌈🐛🏳️‍⚧️🦋

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2 hours ago, Sally Stone said:

M.

 

The term bigender works for me because after taking the time to explore my feelings, I kept coming to the same conclusion, that while I felt an overpowering need to express my inner woman, I also enjoyed being a man.  I realized that my personality was equal parts man and woman and to be happy and fulfilled, I needed to express both sides.  There are challenges living a life of two-gender expression, but I'll expand on some of those in future posts.  

 

Hugs,

 

Sally

Nothing wrong with that. I'm glad that you found what makes you happy! Just curious what does your wife think? If it's too personal I understand.

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14 hours ago, Ashley0616 said:

Just curious what does your wife think?

Ashley, for a very long time she clung to the term crossdresser, because for her it was less threatening.  Over the years, though, she has come to recognize and acknowledge that I have a strong feminine side.  And like me, she now has a much better understanding of where my transgender journey is going, so me being bigender, isn't the threat she might have perceived it as, years ago. 

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Post 6

The Military Career Years

In 1977 I joined the Army and went to flight school to become a helicopter pilot.  To fly for the military had been a childhood dream and when the opportunity arose, I took advantage of it, despite knowing I would have to carefully control my crossdressing activity.  At the time, military aviation was male dominated and a haven for Type A personalities and excessive testosterone.  I had always been competitive but my personality was not typically Type A.  And while I could never be considered effeminate, I wasn’t overtly masculine either.  Consequently, I had little trouble hiding the part of my personality that leaned towards the feminine side. 

 

However, serving in the Army limited my opportunities for feminine self-expression.  During this period, I learned that being unable to express my feminine nature regularly, led to frustration and unhappiness.  I managed these feelings by crossdressing and underdressing whenever I could.  Underdressing has never been very fulfilling for me, but while I was in the Army it was a coping mechanism.  I only cross-dressed in private and occasionally my wife would take me out for a late-night drive.  Those drives were still quite private, but being out of the house was clearly therapeutic. 

 

I told myself I was coping, but when it became apparent the Army was going to be a career, the occasional and closeted feminine expression was clearly inadequate.  I needed more girl time and I wanted to share my feminine side with the rest of the world, so the frustration and unhappiness grew.  Despite my feelings regarding feminine self-expression, I loved flying, so I wasn’t willing to give up my military career.  Consequently, I resigned myself to the fact that the female half of my personality needed to take a back seat, and what helped me through, was dreaming of military retirement, and finally having the ability to let Sally blossom.

 

About Sally. Ironically, she was born while I was still serving.  It was Halloween and my wife and I were hosting a unit party.  I looked upon the occasion as the perfect excuse to dress like a girl.  After a little trepidation, my wife agreed I should take advantage of the opportunity.  Back then, my transformations were not very good, but with my wife’s help, my Halloween costume looked quite authentic.  Originally, my wife suggested that my presentation should be caricature to prevent anyone from seeing through my costume.  But that didn’t appeal to me at all.  I wanted to look as feminine and ladylike as I could.

 

To my wife’s and my amazement, my costume was the hit of the party.  In fact, later in the evening, my unit buddies decided they wanted to take me out drinking and before either me or my wife could protest, I was whisked away and taken to one of our favorite watering holes.  Terrified at first, I had an amazing time, we all did.  But on Monday morning, when I came to work, I learned that I had a new nickname; it was Sally, and for the duration of that tour, that’s what I was called.  Well, when it came time for me to choose a feminine name, there weren’t any other choices.  Sally it was, and to this day I adore the name, and thank my pilot buddies for choosing it.

 

And this brings me to my last assignment before retiring.  I was teaching military science in an Army ROTC program at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia.  I had been a member of TRIESS (a nationwide crossdressing support group).  I wasn’t really an active participant but when we moved to Georgia, I learned there was a local chapter in Atlanta.  I reached out to the membership chair person, and joined.

 

Because the chapter meetings took place in Atlanta, a trans friendly city, and because Atlanta was so far from Macon and any of my military connections, I felt it would be safe to let my feminine hair down.  The monthly meetings took place in the Westin Hotel and Conference Center in Buckhead, an upscale northern Atlanta suburb, and the hotel itself was 4-star.  The meetings were weekend affairs with lots of great activities that allowed me to express myself in a public setting for the first time.  It was during this time, that Sally began to blossom.

 

I have the fondest memories of Sigma Epsilon (the name of our chapter in Atlanta).  Because the hotel was also a conference center, there was always some big event, and in many cases, there were several.  One weekend there was a nail technician conference that culminated in a contest on Saturday evening.  When the organizers learned there was a huge group of crossdressers staying at the hotel, they reached out to us looking for manicure volunteers.  I volunteered and got a beautiful set of long red fingernails that I wore for the duration of the weekend.

 

During another of our meeting weekends, there was a huge military wedding taking place, and imagine what we were all thinking when we learned it was a Marine wedding.  Our entire group was on edge worrying we might have to keep a low profile.  It turned out to be one of the most memorable weekends I would experience there.  First off, the Marines were all perfect gentlemen.  On Friday night and throughout the day on Saturday before the wedding, we rubbed elbows with most of them and their wives in and around the hotel, and at the hotel bar.  In fact, we got along so well the bride invited us to the reception.  Somewhere, there is a picture of me with a handsomely dressed Marine draped on each of my arms, standing in the lobby of the hotel.  Sadly, I never got a copy of it because the woman who took the picture used a film camera (yes, they actually took picture that way in ancient times). 

 

My two-years with Sigma Epsilon was the perfect transition.  I went from being fully closeted to being mostly out.  I enhanced my feminine presentation and significantly reduced my social anxiety.  It also signified the end of one life and the beginning of another.  I had a great career and never regretted serving, but I was ready to shed the restrictions 20-years of Army service had imposed on my feminine self-expression.  My new life, Sally’s life, was about to begin, and with it I would begin to fully spread a new set of wings, this time feminine wings. 

 

Hugs,

Sally

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I so very much enjoy your posts. This one, though, hit home with me for many reasons. I was commissioned in the Army in '77, as well. Like you, I was not overly masculine in the way that many of our contemporaries were. I (still do) cried at weddings, pictures of puppies and babies, when I talked about bring proud of what my units accomplished and was never the Type A leader. In the end, it worked for me and I had a successful career.

 

This is, of course, your story not mine so I won't detail my struggle. It just took me much longer to understand what the underlying cause of my feelings was and even more to admit it. To act on it. 

 

Thank you for sharing your story, Sally.

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21 hours ago, Sally Stone said:

M.

 

The term bigender works for me because after taking the time to explore my feelings, I kept coming to the same conclusion, that while I felt an overpowering need to express my inner woman, I also enjoyed being a man.  I realized that my personality was equal parts man and woman and to be happy and fulfilled, I needed to express both sides. 

 

Hugs,

 

Sally

This is a scarily accurate description of what I feel!

 

I hope I don't sound too schmaltzy by saying this, but I remember when I signed up to this forum last year, during the sign-up process the question is asked, "Why do you want to join TransPulse?" to which I wrote, "Looking for a home where I can freely write about my issues and interact with similar people." 

 

I think I just found one. ❤️

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4 hours ago, April Marie said:

Thank you for sharing your story, Sally.

 

1 hour ago, Mirrabooka said:

This is a scarily accurate description of what I feel!

Ladies, each of your comments makes me realize my decision to share my journey was a good one.  Before committing, I worried that my storyline wouldn't be of interest to anyone. I'm so glad I'm striking a chord with many of you.

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Sally, thank you for deciding to post your life experiences. They have certainly struck some chords with me, and have caused me to look again at my life and where I am going.  I will not take up your thread with my thoughts, but suffice to say that I was commissioned into the military (RAF) as an aviator in 1963. Fortunately my cross-gender feelings were mild and easily suppressed. It is only in later life that they have come to the fore.

 

I look forward to reading more.

 

Karen

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Post 7

“The Pittsburgh Years”

When I retired from the Army, we moved to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania because I had been hired by US Airways to work in their flight training department.  The transition to civilian life was a bit of an adjustment, but I never really looked back.  At the same time, I was excited at the prospect of having more Sally time. But with work and two teenage boys in the house, getting to be Sally was a challenge. 

 

The biggest issue in this regard were my sons, as they didn’t know about my feminine side.  My wife and I discussed, in great detail, whether or not to tell them.  If they had known about Sally, it would have been much easier to actually be Sally when I wanted to.  But I still didn’t know exactly where my transgender journey was going to take me, and this uncertainty was the primary reason my wife and I decided it wasn’t the right time to tell them about Sally.  Except for the convenience it would afford me, we didn’t think it was fair to burdened them with such a sensitive family secret if it wasn’t absolutely necessary.  If at some point things changed and it looked like I might be heading towards transition, my wife and I agreed we would revisit our decision.

 

Despite having to tiptoe around the boys I was able, with my wife often running interference for me, to significantly increase my girl time.  The nature of my variable work schedule meant that often days off occurred during the week when the boys were in school, and on those days, I took full advantage of the time.  Additionally, I had discovered a new trans friend through a local support group, and my wife, ever and always accommodating, ensured I had time for outings with my new friend. 

 

Willa, my new friend, quickly became my best friend, and after only a short time, she and my wife became quite close as well.  With Willa’s help, I would soon discover that Pittsburgh was a very trans friendly city.  Together, she and I made the town our own.  We attended the theater, the symphony, we went out to dinner regularly, and I think we visited every museum in the city.  With Willa’s support and friendship, I was actually becoming quite the girl about town. 

 

Willa and I had a lot in common.  We loved to shop, we had similar feminine styles, and we had similar views and feelings about being trans.  In fact, our frequent and deep discussions about transgender issues helped me begin to understand my transgender nature.  Having Willa as a springboard for all topics transgender, was probably as effective as regularly visiting a therapist.  I would never discount anyone’s desire to seek professional help, but having an unbiased confidant, can also be an effective method for self-discovery. 

 

Exploring the city as Sally and spending time with Willa was instrumental in helping me understand my transgender nature, and would begin shaping my transgender objective.  My feelings about the kind of girl I was and where I wanted to go began to solidify.  Being out and socializing as Sally in a big city like Pittsburgh, taught me I could express my femininity without issue.  I honestly felt confident I could live my life as a woman; however, remaining completely objective, I just couldn’t see giving up the life I’d built as a man.

 

At that time, I was being heavily influenced by the concept of the gender binary, which had me thinking I had to choose between being a man or being a woman.  It was Willa who reminded me there were no rules requiring gender identity to be binary.  During one of our deep discussions, she posited the idea of enjoying both genders, something she was doing, and a concept that made a lot of sense to me.  I was already living the life of a part-time woman, so I simply started paying more attention to how that was making me feel. 

 

One characteristic that was dominating my feminine self-expression (and it continues to this day) was that when I was Sally, I was “all in.”  When I became Sally, it was such a complete transformation that I truly felt like a woman.  The feeling was powerful, and if I had to describe it another way, I’d say it was akin to an actor, so into the part, they actually become the character they are portraying.  That was me, and I discovered that this level of depth was extremely fulfilling, and that feeling tended to last long after transitioning back to my male persona.  Part-time womanhood it seemed, was actually working for me. 

 

Eventually, a job change forced me to move away from Pittsburgh, but the enlightenment I experienced while living there has shaped the nature of my bi-gender personality to this day.  Even after leaving, Willa and I remained the best of friends.  We had many more adventures, some of which I will detail in later posts.  Sadly, Willa passed away two-years ago after contracting a prolonged illness.  Her loss was hard to take and I miss her dearly.  However, I have so many fond memories of our times together, and because her support helped shape me, she lives on in my heart.

 

Hugs,

 

Sally

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15 minutes ago, Sally Stone said:

Post 7

“The Pittsburgh Years”

When I retired from the Army, we moved to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania because I had been hired by US Airways to work in their flight training department.  The transition to civilian life was a bit of an adjustment, but I never really looked back.  At the same time, I was excited at the prospect of having more Sally time. But with work and two teenage boys in the house, getting to be Sally was a challenge. 

 

The biggest issue in this regard were my sons, as they didn’t know about my feminine side.  My wife and I discussed, in great detail, whether or not to tell them.  If they had known about Sally, it would have been much easier to actually be Sally when I wanted to.  But I still didn’t know exactly where my transgender journey was going to take me, and this uncertainty was the primary reason my wife and I decided it wasn’t the right time to tell them about Sally.  Except for the convenience it would afford me, we didn’t think it was fair to burdened them with such a sensitive family secret if it wasn’t absolutely necessary.  If at some point things changed and it looked like I might be heading towards transition, my wife and I agreed we would revisit our decision.

 

Despite having to tiptoe around the boys I was able, with my wife often running interference for me, to significantly increase my girl time.  The nature of my variable work schedule meant that often days off occurred during the week when the boys were in school, and on those days, I took full advantage of the time.  Additionally, I had discovered a new trans friend through a local support group, and my wife, ever and always accommodating, ensured I had time for outings with my new friend. 

 

Willa, my new friend, quickly became my best friend, and after only a short time, she and my wife became quite close as well.  With Willa’s help, I would soon discover that Pittsburgh was a very trans friendly city.  Together, she and I made the town our own.  We attended the theater, the symphony, we went out to dinner regularly, and I think we visited every museum in the city.  With Willa’s support and friendship, I was actually becoming quite the girl about town. 

 

Willa and I had a lot in common.  We loved to shop, we had similar feminine styles, and we had similar views and feelings about being trans.  In fact, our frequent and deep discussions about transgender issues helped me begin to understand my transgender nature.  Having Willa as a springboard for all topics transgender, was probably as effective as regularly visiting a therapist.  I would never discount anyone’s desire to seek professional help, but having an unbiased confidant, can also be an effective method for self-discovery. 

 

Exploring the city as Sally and spending time with Willa was instrumental in helping me understand my transgender nature, and would begin shaping my transgender objective.  My feelings about the kind of girl I was and where I wanted to go began to solidify.  Being out and socializing as Sally in a big city like Pittsburgh, taught me I could express my femininity without issue.  I honestly felt confident I could live my life as a woman; however, remaining completely objective, I just couldn’t see giving up the life I’d built as a man.

 

At that time, I was being heavily influenced by the concept of the gender binary, which had me thinking I had to choose between being a man or being a woman.  It was Willa who reminded me there were no rules requiring gender identity to be binary.  During one of our deep discussions, she posited the idea of enjoying both genders, something she was doing, and a concept that made a lot of sense to me.  I was already living the life of a part-time woman, so I simply started paying more attention to how that was making me feel. 

 

One characteristic that was dominating my feminine self-expression (and it continues to this day) was that when I was Sally, I was “all in.”  When I became Sally, it was such a complete transformation that I truly felt like a woman.  The feeling was powerful, and if I had to describe it another way, I’d say it was akin to an actor, so into the part, they actually become the character they are portraying.  That was me, and I discovered that this level of depth was extremely fulfilling, and that feeling tended to last long after transitioning back to my male persona.  Part-time womanhood it seemed, was actually working for me. 

 

Eventually, a job change forced me to move away from Pittsburgh, but the enlightenment I experienced while living there has shaped the nature of my bi-gender personality to this day.  Even after leaving, Willa and I remained the best of friends.  We had many more adventures, some of which I will detail in later posts.  Sadly, Willa passed away two-years ago after contracting a prolonged illness.  Her loss was hard to take and I miss her dearly.  However, I have so many fond memories of our times together, and because her support helped shape me, she lives on in my heart.

 

Hugs,

 

Sally

It's awesome that you have had such a great friend in your life! I could only imagine what losing felt like to you. It's neat that you worked for the airlines. Did you take advantage of the space availability fights? My dad worked for Northwest and always flew every single summer except one where we drove from north Mississippi to Phoenix, AZ. My parents agreed to never do that again lol. 

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Thank you for continuing to share your story, Sally!

 

2 hours ago, Sally Stone said:

having an unbiased confidant

Willa sounded like a grand friend, I'm sorry for your loss. :(

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5 hours ago, Ashley0616 said:

Did you take advantage of the space availability fights?

I did Ashley.  Non-rev travel was one of the major factors for taking the job.  At the time, US Airways had the best non-rev policy in the industry.  It cost $10 to fly coach and $25 to fly first class.  We flew first class whenever there were seats available.  

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3 hours ago, MaeBe said:

Willa sounded like a grand friend, I'm sorry for your loss. :(

Thanks Mae.  She was an amazing friend and I grew to love her like a sister.

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Post 8

“The Ohio Years”

We moved to Pittsburgh because of the job with US Airways.  The job involved classroom instruction and simulator training, but no actual flying, so I kept looking for an actual pilot position.  A year after signing on with US Airways I got hired to fly business jets.  The company was located in Cleveland, Ohio, but I was flown commercially from my home in Pittsburgh to where my aircraft was located, making it unnecessary to live near company headquarters. 

 

My flight scheduled consisted of eight days on duty with seven days off.  Having seven days off in a row was great but being gone from home eight days in a row was difficult.  For the first few years the flying was fun, but after a while the eight flying days in a row, were taking their toll on me.  Those days were brutal, consisting of very long hours and a lot of flying time.  Usually, I came home exhausted and need three days just to recover from the work week.  Flying for a living is glamorous until you actually do it.  Quickly, it became just a job. 

 

After five years as a line captain, I became a flight department manager, which required we live near company headquarters.  That meant a move to Cleveland.  Working in the office meant I was home every night but as a manager, the schedule was still challenging.  I would work in the office all week and then be expected to go out and fly the line on weekends.  I referred to it as my “5 on 2 on” schedule, because it felt as though I had no time off at all.

 

About the same time, we moved to Cleveland, my wife and I became “empty nesters,” with one son in the military and the other away at college.  Sadly, my work schedule didn’t leave much time for Sally.  Add to the fact that while Cleveland is an awesome city, I just never felt comfortable expressing my feminine side.  Most of my outings, and believe me there weren’t enough, occurred while I was on vacation and away from home.

 

One of the most memorable outings occurred over a long weekend.  I had stumbled across an online notice for a spring formal being held in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, hosted by a local trans group there.  I reached out to Willa to see if she was up for an excellent adventure.  She was, so I picked her up and we drove to Harrisburg together. 

 

The formal was held on Saturday evening and we had the absolute best time.  It turned out that organizers were a group named TransCentralPA.  Everyone was wonderful and I made a lot of new friends that evening.  We learned the spring formal was one of the group’s annual events but for the following year, instead of a spring formal, the group wanted to do a local transgender conference.  That local conference would become the Keystone Conference, and I would attend every year for the next 12.  My move to the west coast was the only reason I stopped attending annually. 

I went to the first annual Keystone Conference as an attendee, but in subsequent years I served as a volunteer and as a workshop presenter; more about those in the next installment.

 

For my Cleveland years, the Keystone Conference would be my major outlet for feminine self-expression.  Yes, I did get out on other occasions, but they were too infrequent.  The managerial job just didn’t allow me the freedom I needed to adequately live my feminine life, and my frustration level was slowly, but steadily on the rise.  It amazed me how adversely not being able to express the feminine half of my personality was affecting my happiness.

 

However, a major life change was upcoming, and while it would prove to be a significant challenge in many ways, the events would ultimately benefit my female persona.  First, my mom and dad got sick.  They were in and out of the hospital and required personal care.  My wife and I did our best but living in Cleveland, we were too far from them to give them the support they both needed.  Second, I was experiencing serious job burn out.  I decided I need to find another job and I needed to be closer to my parents. 

 

Things changed for the better when I got hired by an aviation training company as a flight simulator instructor.  I would be training business jet pilots.  The training facility was located in New Jersey, which put us much closer to my parents, and the work schedule was much better for quality of life.  Most importantly, this life change would help Sally re-emerge and once again flower. 

 

Hugs,

 

Sally       

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I read each of your entries and learn so much. Thank you, especially, for the TransCentralPA info. I have been looking fora group and activities where I could express myself safely and with support. I missed this year's conference but next year might be possible and I am going to look at their other events, too.

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Dear @Sally Stone.  I think you should author a memoir based on these posts (maybe you're already working towards that?).  You could decide at a later time if/when you might want to publish.

 

I appreciate you sharing your deep connection with your friend Willa (and I am sorry for your loss) and the benefit of having a Trans friend and mentor in our Life and Journey.  I was fortunate to have found one also in our TGP friend @Kasumi63.

 

As you know we share many common Life themes in our stories.  Drop me a PM if you'd like to chat about it.  Looking forward to the next 'chapter'.

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2 hours ago, April Marie said:

I read each of your entries and learn so much. Thank you, especially, for the TransCentralPA info

April,

 

I'm glad my entries are interesting to you.  TransCentralPA is a great organization with so many caring people.  I would strongly recommend you find a way to attend the Keystone Conference.  I guarantee you'll find it an amazing experience.  

 

Hugs,

 

Sally

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Post 9

“The Jersey Years”

 

If it wasn’t for the property taxes, I’d still be living in New Jersey.  The state gets such a bad rap but it is actually a beautiful place, with lots to do, and it is extremely trans friendly.  Moving to New Jersey was quite uplifting from a trans perspective. 

 

Because of my new and very flexible work schedule, I was suddenly getting a lot more time to express my feminine side, and I took every opportunity to do so.  Additionally, I became a member of a trans dinner group.  It was the perfect way to meet other trans women, and I made quite a few friends.

 

The dinner group was actually a throwback from a time when going out dressed as a woman was still something of a novelty, and it was created as a safe haven for girls that still weren’t comfortable being out in the world by themselves.  When the group was formed, it was a necessary resource, but that need waned over the years, and it morphed into more of a social group.  It still occasionally served its designed purpose as we often had newcomers just emerging from the closet, but for most of us it was an opportunity to get together and catch up.

 

The move to New Jersey also coincided with an important trans milestone for me.  I made the decision to keep my legs shaved.  This wasn’t a decision I came to easily.  It meant I was going against my wife’s wishes.  While she had always been supportive of me, shaving my legs was just a “bridge to far” for her.  I honestly believe, that in her mind, dressing like a woman was always a temporary thing, but shaving my legs, well, that was more of a permanent condition, and I think it scared her. 

 

To me, shaving was a rite of passage.  I had made the decision to be a woman part time, but I wanted something exclusively feminine to signify my inner woman, even when I wasn’t presenting as a woman.  Finally, I decided not to wait any longer, and in deference to my wife’s concerns, I started shaving my legs regularly. 

For the longest time, she remained unhappy about my decision, and while there were times, I thought about giving in just to keep the peace, I stayed the course I had plotted.  Over time, my smooth legs became less and less of an issue, and now it’s been ten-years since I last had hair on my legs.  Thankfully, my smooth legs are no longer much of a concern for my wife, and now, I can’t imagine ever going back.

 

So, how does a part-time woman who isn’t stealthy by most measures, get along so well in the world?  In two words it’s attitude and mannerisms.  At one of the Keystone Conferences, I kept noticing another trans woman always staring at me.  At the time, I didn’t know her but the attention she was paying me was becoming borderline creepy.  Later, while I was sitting at the hotel bar enjoying a cocktail, this same woman took the empty seat next to me.  Before I could decide whether to stay or leave, she turned to me, introduced herself, and then apologized for her stares.  She went on to tell me she was staring at me because I intrigued her.  She told me that of all the people she had met or observed during the conference, I was the most “girly” (her words, not mine).  She said if it wasn’t for my height, she’d never have guessed that I was trans, because I had the poise, attitude and mannerisms of a very feminine woman.    

 

I met another girl through the dinner group, who was living fulltime and preparing for GRS.  She and I became the best of friends, a bond I believe was formed over us both serving in the military.  Often, she would comment on how authentic I was.  She would always tell me I was so feminine and womanly; I could easily go fulltime. 

 

There have been other acquaintances who made similar comments, and the truth is I could probably live my life as a woman without too much trouble.  The thing is, I don’t want to.  Yes, I thoroughly enjoy being a woman, and when I am, I am quite convincing, but that doesn’t mean I’d be truly happy.  If I had never met my wife, and didn’t have two super great kids, and I didn’t enjoy being a guy, perhaps I would have given serious consideration to transitioning.  Maybe I’m just selfish, but I want to walk in both worlds, male and female, and I see nothing that should prevent me from doing so.

Does my part-time life make me any less a woman.  If how much of a woman I am was measured by how much time I spend expressing that part of my personality, then yes, I probably could be considered less of a woman.  But it wouldn’t change at all how much of a woman my feminine half is.  Her time for self-expression is limited yes, but when she’s out, she’s every bit the woman anyone else is.

 

Hugs,

 

Sally

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7 hours ago, Sally Stone said:

I made the decision to keep my legs shaved.  This wasn’t a decision I came to easily.  It meant I was going against my wife’s wishes.  While she had always been supportive of me, shaving my legs was just a “bridge to far” for her. 

 Same here. Shaving my legs would be the natural next step for me, but my wife is also disapproving of it and I'm not really desperate enough to force the issue. What does give me hope is the thought that if I did shave them, my wife might actually like it, especially during times of intimacy, and she might then demand that I keep my legs clean shaven after that! I guess it's a bit of a fantasy. She has accepted that I will shave them one day just for an experiment, so we'll see what happens after that.

 

7 hours ago, Sally Stone said:

Maybe I’m just selfish, but I want to walk in both worlds, male and female, and I see nothing that should prevent me from doing so.

In the past, I've thought about what might appear to be selfishness too and came to the conclusion that I'm not. Rather, I'm non-committal, and I am that way because of my comparative lack of illness-inducing dysphoria. Nothing about me needs fixing, so there is nothing preventing me from continuing to have the best of both worlds either. It's apparent that we are dealing with a similar issue in different ways though. The main difference between us, I think, is that I am the simultaneous type of bi-gender (if indeed that's what I am), and I deal with it by presenting myself a bit androgynously, rather than either/or.

 

@Sally Stone, aspects of your story are eerily common to my journey. I can hardly wait for the next instalment! 

 

 

 

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10 hours ago, Sally Stone said:

To me, shaving was a rite of passage.  I had made the decision to be a woman part time, but I wanted something exclusively feminine to signify my inner woman, even when I wasn’t presenting as a woman.  Finally, I decided not to wait any longer, and in deference to my wife’s concerns, I started shaving my legs regularly. 

Just really started reading this thread today and it is fascinating. Thank you for sharing @Sally Stone... I started shaving my legs (and chest and arms) about eight years ago when I was living apart from my wife. I decided then that there was no going back - I just love smooth skin and really hate hate hate body hair (I have quite a bit -- "Hey, nice sweater" people would say when I took my shirt OFF).

 

My wife is not thrilled but I think in time it just fades into the background and folks don't give it a second thought after the novelty of noticing it. And if they do harp on it, it's like why does it matter so much to you what my legs look like? 

10 hours ago, Sally Stone said:

Maybe I’m just selfish, but I want to walk in both worlds, male and female, and I see nothing that should prevent me from doing so.

I am kind of here too -- I want to express myself more and more outwardly in a feminine way. But I don't hate everything about being a guy. I would probably go 100 percent female dress if society were more accepting of that (and family)... 

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@Sally Stone This is a great thread and resonates with me as well. Please keep it going!

 

+1 on leg hair. Mine basically stopped growing on its own in my early 30s (cause unknown), but I prefer the look. Was never comfortable with body hair.

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Leg hair.  Shaving it was a surprisingly big decision.  (Not as big as the beard tho)  After I did it a few times, it's never really grown back.  Haven't shaved them in a couple of years and you'd never know it.  A daughter living with me doesn't shave hers, and she is much furrier than I ever was.  

 

I don't exactly hate my living as a guy in the past.  TBH, I was never quite there anyway.  But I just dropped it.  I live full time fem, and it would bother me a lot to go back to being a guy.  But I don't have to appease family or an employer.

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Odd that this topic showed up today. With the warmer weather approaching, I decided to do something about my legs. When I was in my twenties, my legs were quite hairy, but have become less hirsute as I age. I decided to mow the hair with my manscaping device to make eventual shaving less messy. This made me realize that due to a lack of limberness and practice, shaving might be a major undertaking, so today I applied depilatory from mid-thighs to my ankles (no hair on feet, fortunately). The odor wasn't as unpleasant as I expected (didn't use a common store brand*), and the results were gratifying. I'll try it on my chest next.

 

*I'm not sure whether mentioning product names is allowed – think of a musical by Lerner and Loewe.

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  • Posts

    • Davie
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kM753ilB8ns 41st Annual Long Beach Pride Parade, broadcast by NBC.  
    • MaeBe
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      I liked it, Mae.  No apologies necessary.  
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    • Sally Stone
      Post 13 “My Compartmentalized Life” In the interest of “full disclosure” I thought I should point out that my part-time life is also a very compartmentalized life.  Long time friends and close family don’t know Sally.  Most of the acquaintances I have made as Sally, have never met my male persona, and only a few close friends, know both personas.  It sounds complicated, I know, but it happens to fit my current transgender lifestyle.  But, how did I get here?   It started years ago when I didn’t know why I felt like a girl.  The only choice I thought I had, was to keep my feelings, and the crossdressing that went along with it, a closely guarded secret.  My Army career forced me to be even more guarded, so the need for secrecy became a habit.  Later, I wanted to emerge from my closet.  I wanted Sally to experience the world but because I still didn’t understand my true transgender nature, I wasn’t ready to share my feminine side with people I knew.    As Sally’s social life expanded, it was only natural that her circle of friends and acquaintances would also expand.  This resulted in a situation where suddenly, I was simultaneously in and out of the closet.  My transgender life had become compartmentalized.  Again, because I didn’t know where my trans journey was taking me, keeping my feminine side a secret from close friends and family, was still the logical choice.  I knew the situation might change if my destination was going to be full transition, but I decided to cross that bridge if or when I came to it.   It would be many more years before I understood completely, my trans nature.  When it became clear to me that I could be happy and fulfilled living my life as a part-time woman, I didn’t have to cross the full transition bridge.  And, because I had become quite adept at keeping my two lives compartmentalized, I saw no benefit to changing things.  I was walking in two completely different worlds.  My male persona had his world with his acquaintances, and Sally had her own world, with her own acquaintances.  For a very long time those two worlds didn’t overlap, but a few years ago, that changed.   Through my New Jersey dinner group, Sally became close with a couple, one trans, the other her spouse.  My wife became good friends with them as well.  We went out together often, and because our friends only knew me as Sally, I always presented to them that way.  That was until one time, when my wife and I had a commitment earlier in the day that made it impossible for me to transform before we were scheduled to meet our friends for dinner.  My first reaction to the situation was to cancel.  I had this overpowering aversion to letting them meet my male persona.  My wife convinced me that my concern was silly.  Still, I was so spring-loaded to maintaining my compartmentalized life, I actually called my friends to ask them if they would be okay meeting my “alter-ego.” As if they would have said no.  It was a ridiculous concern, and of course, they were actually perfectly happy to meet my “other half."    It turned out that letting our friends meet and interact with my male persona wasn’t as terrifying as I had imagined, and since that initial reveal, I have come out the same way to more of Sally’s close friends.  It’s easier now, but still not natural for me.  I’d still rather Sally’s friends interact only with Sally.  I guess all the years of compartmentalizing my two personalities, has formed a habit that I struggle to break.    When it comes to family and longtime friends, they only know my male persona, and based on my current trans lifestyle, I have no plans to introduce Sally to them.  There just isn’t anything about the way I live my life right now, that would make it necessary.  I won’t deny that sometimes, because I’m hiding a big part of my personality, I feel like a bit of a fraud. After all, they aren’t seeing all of the real me. I do sometimes struggle with this conflict.  On the one hand, I want everyone to know the real me but on the other hand, why run the risk of alienating family members or long-time friends when it isn’t absolutely necessary?   Believe it or not, there have been some in the trans community, that have argued I’m not actually trans since I haven’t gone through the ordeal of coming out to family and friends, that I haven’t experienced the one true transgender right-of-passage.  I know it has been way more difficult for those who have had to face the coming out challenge with friends and loved ones, but the level of difficulty one experiences doesn’t define someone’s level of transness.  In a future post, I’ll reflect on an incident when I was called out publicly for not being trans enough, and how it affected my confidence and self-worth.   I do have some family members and longtime friends that I have seriously considered coming out to, and I may follow through at some point. But again, because I am part-time, the timeline for doing so is really up to me and my comfort level, instead of a matter of necessity.           It’s obvious that unlike so many in our community, I haven’t had to “face the music.” I know how gut-wrenching and life changing coming out to close acquaintances can be, so I do consider myself fortunate.  It is important to note that I have not chosen a part-time trans life just to avoid the pain and tribulations of coming out.  Living part-time honestly has to do with not having to choose between one personality over the other, because ultimately, I could never be happy or fulfilled if I had to choose only one.   Yes, my life is seriously compartmentalized, with Sally in one compartment and my male persona in another.  Based on where my trans journey has taken me up to this point, and where it looks like it is headed in the future, I don’t anticipate much of a change. Walking in two worlds is a choice that works for me.  I know I am different, but each of us is, so I don’t think I need to make any apologies for living my life this way.    Hugs,   Sally       
    • MaeBe
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    • VickySGV
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    • Ivy
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    • April Marie
      Looking in the mirror brings joy.   The woman smiles back at me.
    • Charlize
      Perhaps a bit of light might exist if i look at this as a further verification that simply disliking the existence of a school's policy is not a reason to sue.  The rights of these parents or their children are not harmed.  They simply cannot dictate policy because of dubious beliefs.   Hugs,   Charlize
    • Mmindy
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    • RaineOnYourParade
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