(I think it is time for an updated picture of us, huh?)
Recently I received the following comment from a reader:
You have very good taste in fashion!
I'm the wife of a closeted (mostly fetish) crossdresser and stumbled on your blog. It's certainly another side of things that I'm enjoying reading about.
If it's okay to ask, you look very authentic but I was wondering if this doesn't bother your wife? I like being part of a heterosexual couple and I like being seen as such, and one area that saddens me about my husbands dressing is if we were out publicly like you are, we would look like a lesbian couple. Does this upset your wife at all?
Anyway, sorry if I've derailed your blog. I was just curious if how I feel is common. And can I hire you as a stylist please?!! :)
I will offer my answers first, and then I will post up Jules' thoughts on the questions!
First off, thank you so much for your complements and good for you for reaching out. Secondly, I love helping anyone work on their style, so if you are serious, I am sure we could figure out some way for me to offer you my assistance!
So, to your more pressing concerns:
Does presenting authentically as a woman bother my wife?
I don't think me looking as you describe has affected her thoughts of me. This look has taken time to develop and it has not always been as it is now. I couldn't really correlate her behavior as changes with my appearance.
Does it upset my wife to appear as a lesbian couple and not a heterosexual one?
I would have to say that at first, yeah it kind of did, at least from my perception. But it didn't really come about much until a few times when some folks would ask her, or me, how we knew each other. Neither of us really knew how to respond. We were not really sure that we wanted folks to see us as a married couple or not. But when it did come up, we discussed it.
That was kind of when some of Jules' thoughts about how we were being perceived came out. But it really turned into more of a discussion about how both of us we being inhibited by how we thought others were perceiving us. Thinking that made us both act differently. It took time and effort for us to both just relax and be willing to be ourselves.
I will say that it is interesting in that when we are presenting as we think that most of society is, straight and non-transgender, we have a perception that we are just like everyone else, that somehow everyone perceives us as "normal." And thus being as we are perceived as normal, we are part of the group. We are just like everyone else. It is hard to stand out from the group. It is hard to be different. But the vast majority of it is really only in our own perceptions. It is the rare person who will make a scene in public. Most people try very hard to avoid conflicts. And no one has ever been rude to either Jules or I, towards either my dressing or the possibility that we may be a lesbian couple.
I was curious if how I feel is common?
Um yeah. How you feel is quite common, from what I can gather. I am a member of a site: crossdressers.com and from what I have read about other couples on that site, your feelings are very common. Maybe you can visit there and connect with other wives of cross dressers. It might be comforting being able to chat about your feelings with others in similar situations.
And no, you have not derailed my blog. I LOVE getting reader's questions. And if in anyway, I could ever possibly help someone along this terribly bumpy road that we call life, you have given me a wonderful gift!
Best of luck to you!!
Jules Spirit here, Nadine's wife. I thought I would respond to your comment and share with you and others what I went through regarding going out in public with Nadine when dressed as a woman.
For me, going out with my husband dressed for the first bit left me with a feeling of being uncomfortable. I was not really sure why I felt that way, but I definitely did feel odd.
At first, I told him that I feel sad that I couldn't interact with him while he was dressed in the same way I did when he was presenting as male. I actually felt angry about this. I did feel odd thinking that people were looking at us if he or I showed any affection out in the world, that people might think we were lesbians.
But I had to take a step back and look at myself. I am bisexual and have have girlfriends I went out in public with and never once felt weird about showing affection to them. Also, I have never really been someone who cares what other people think about me. So the feelings I was having about my husband were not valid.
I then came to the realization that my husband acted different while dressed. He was more insecure and bashful, yet he is rarely to never like this when dressed in drab. After talking to him about this, he also noticed this and has worked hard to just be himself, regardless of how he is presenting. That helped a lot!
One other thing that has helped a lot is how I think about him when he is dressed. I, too, was acting differently towards him when he was dressed. Now, when he dresses, and we go out, (or stay home), I remember that no matter what clothes my husband is wearing, he is still the same person. He is the person I love, married, and live with every day.
I guess my end thoughts about all of this is that the packaging doesn't matter, the person inside does. Anyone who may see us when we are out with him dressed can think anything they want, because the only person I care about what they are thinking is my husband.
I hope this helps you through this very interesting time period in your life and marriage.