Our experiences change our perspectives. Our presentations change our experiences.
A t-girl knows this. She realizes this the very first time she looks in a mirror after she tries on her first wig or begins learning makeup or takes those quiet, tentative steps outside of her home en femme for the first time.
In male mode I never think too much about my appearance. If I have to go into the office I make sure my dress shirt isn’t wrinkled and my tie (if I have to wear one) more or less matches the rest of what I am wearing.
Buuuut we all know it’s the opposite when we are dressing. We agonize and delight in EVERYTHING. How do my legs look in this skirt? Do my heels match my accessories? Is my lipstick too bold?
I knew I would be nervous the first time I went out en femme. I was prepared and was expecting it. But I was struck by how much it contrasted my experiences prior to that, when I had only shown the world my boy side.
As a very normal man, I don’t turn heads. I am average in appearance and don’t attract any attention. I look like 99% of the white, middle-age guy population. He goes about his day never thinking that anyone is paying attention to him and he never speculates what someone else is thinking when they see him.
Buuuut we all know it’s the opposite when we are en femme. Paranoia, fear, insecurity, dysphoria, worry…
However, I also need to acknowledge that it’s never ALL doom and gloom. Hannah struts, he ambles. Hannah holds her head high, he stares into the distance. Hannah smiles, she glows, he just wants to accomplish what he came into the store to do and go home. Hannah flirts in the mirror, he ignores them.
A t-girl learns quickly that the world reacts to her in a very different way than they react to him. Hannah and I get different responses because of a million different things and some of these responses are completely based on what SHE and HE put out there.
Hannah posts photos of herself, he doesn’t. Hannah thinks that she is cute, he doesn’t give a second thought about how he looks. When I post of a photo of Hannah I am hoping that it gets a ton of ‘likes’. On the very, VERY rare occasion a photo of HIM finds it’s way online he doesn’t expect ANYONE to comment on his appearance.
Sometimes I think a lot about how different our lives are. HE is more reserved, SHE loves attention. I think most of the people in HIS life, and HER life would be surprised to meet my other gender identity and realize that although we inhabit the same body, have the same brain, and have the same heart beating beneath our skin, we are completely different people.
HIS life and HER life started and continued to branch into different directions from the moment our physical presentations began to differ. Our worlds continued onto these paths and will do so for the rest of our life/lives.
I take it all in stride and even find it very amusing. I think it’s kind of funny that HE just randomly selects the shirt he will wear for the day but Hannah thinks and plans and overthinks what she will wear the next time she goes out.
These diverging paths are reinforced on social media as well. He rarely reacts or posts on his social media, SHE posts pictures and blogs and tweets. Hannah puts herself out there and opens herself up to reactions and comments, both positive and… not positive. It happens.
I was reminded of this not too long when HE and SHE posted on (different) social media within a few moments of each other.
If you visit this website you may understandably think that MY life is Hannah’s life. I wouldn’t be surprised if you felt that because this is Hannah’s website and she talks about her life. Sure, some relevant information about HIS life pops up from time to time but I am very careful about what I share about HIM. I rarely get into specifics about his life.
Aaaand I think that’s just fine with ya’ll. You all KNOW I have HIS life but I don’t think the majority of you care.
Hannah has her dreams and her goals BUT he does too. I just don’t talk about them because again, this is HER website and I don’t want to get into any specifics that COULD connect the dots between my two lives. Hannah may be living her life out loud and comes across as confident and devil-may-care… but both SHE and HE have no desire to reveal our other selves to the rest of the world.
I am sure many of you can relate.
Something very good and very exciting happened in HIS life last fall. He kept it to himself for a time but after a few weeks he shared the news with his family but that was it for a long while. The news itself isn’t relevant. No, my wife isn’t pregnant, I didn’t win the lottery or anything life that. But the news was connected to something I have been working on for a very long time.
Anyway, he shared the news a couple of weeks ago on Facebook annnnd it generated a handful of likes and comments.
Within a few moments of the Facebook post, Hannah tweeted this:
This tweet generated literally ten times the amount of comments/likes/reposts as HIS post.
Both posts couldn’t have been more different. Hannah was just wanting attention, HE shared news about something very big, something very exciting.
Her post had the interactions that I was expecting. His post… well, it didn’t. I had thought his news would attract a little more attention but… well, it didn’t.
This is not to gain any sympathy or anything. Shed no tears for HIM, his friends and family are excited for him and he definitely feels the love. I just thought it was funny how different the world reacted to both posts. His post was BIG NEWS, her post was LOOK AT ME.
But to be fair, Hannah has almost 14k followers on Twitter… HE has about a hundred Facebook followers and most of those followers are family.
Again, people react to different things for different reasons. I know that Hannah will get comments about her photos from admirers and, well, chasers and fetishists.
Hannah is… at the risk of sounding VERY conceited, a public figure. She puts herself out there. No one knows, or cares about HIM. Again, this isn’t to gain any sort of reassurance or sympathy. He doesn’t concern himself what some random person in the world or online thinks of how he looks but my God, Hannah’s self-esteem sure is impacted by the reactions she gets when she posts a photo.