The Fear of Being Caught

I think many of us fear being caught.

I have been wearing heels, dresses and anything else you can name for as far back as I can remember.  Well, maybe wearing isn’t the right phrase, perhaps “trying to wear” is more appropriate.  I recall being as young as four and searching the closet for my mom’s high heels.  Even when I was young, I didn’t think there was anything “wrong” with me, I just liked what I liked.  But I somehow knew my wardrobe preferences should be kept a secret.

Until perhaps fifteen years ago, terror and crossdressing went hand in hand.  I was terrified whenever I worked up the courage to go to Target to buy panties at the chance of someone bumping into me.  I was terrified someone would open my closet and see my stilettos.   I was terrified all the time of being caught.

After I came out to my girlfriend, whom I later married, the fear went away for the most part.  The person whose opinion really mattered knew all about me and I didn’t need to hide anymore.  I slowly started posting on forums, such as crossdressers.com, soon photos appeared and, well, now I have this website.

The fear faded as I grew older and started to realize that it was unlikely I would be “caught”.  As far as I know, I have kept this a secret from everyone that I haven’t come out to.  I don’t have any fear going out at all, either.  I don’t think Hannah looks like male me unless you were close enough, but then again, I may be fooling myself.  But I really don’t think I am.

Having this blog and posting photos does open up the chance of being “caught”.  Am I afraid someone in my male life would see it?  Not really.  I don’t think this is the kind of site you just stumble upon.  I think you’d find my site if you were looking for a site like mine.  And if you’re looking for a site like mine, well, you probably understand the importance of keeping a secret.

The other day I was thinking about our fear of being caught.  It’s true, I don’t want to be caught, but I was thinking if there’s anyone in my male life that knows about me that I don’t know of.  It is entirely possible that someone has seen me in the mall carrying a Victoria’s Secret bag or at Ulta picking up foundation.  It is possible someone has found my site, either on accident or on purpose.  If someone has see me and are respecting my privacy, then I truly appreciate it.

However.

If someone does know about me, I really wouldn’t mind if you let me know that you know.  Unless of course you think I am weird or doing something wrong, then you can keep pretending that you don’t know.  But if you know me, if you know the male me, you can tell me.  I don’t like keeping secrets, but we all know how important it is to keep this secret.  If you know the male me and want to meet Hannah, let me know.  She would like to meet you, too.

Love, Hannah

Hannah’s Adventures in Mall of Americaland

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In my male life, I tend to be a bit of a workaholic.  Even on my days off, I plan projects and errands and things that I need to accomplish.  I have a hard time relaxing.  One of my favorite things about having two genders is that Hannah is very different than my male life.  I had quite a few errands planned for yesterday but it was a beautiful morning and I felt like being as beautiful as the day.

I woke up, picked out one of my favorite floral dresses and nude heels and left my house in search of adventure.  I ended up at the Mall of America.  I think for many of us in Minnesota we look visiting this mall as a challenge.  It’s huge, has a ton on people and can be intimidating.  I’ve been to the mall as Hannah before and was excited to return.

I arrived at the mall before most stores had opened and enjoyed listening to the click of my heels on the floor as I wandered around having a coffee.  I caught the eye of other shoppers and I did what I always do when someone looks at me, I smiled at them.  And more often than not, they smiled back.

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A smile can disarm, a smile can put someone at ease and smiling back when someone smiles at us is a reflex.   There was one lady in particular who just…stared at me and I just kept smiling.  I thought about what she would tell her friends later.

“I saw one of those…transgendered people at the mall.”

“What happened?”

“She…smiled at me”.

Yes, we are pretty scary.

As I strolled through the mall, I heard someone say “oh, will you look at the model!”  I turned and saw a couple sitting on a bench waiting for a store to open.  I sat down with them and had a wonderful conversation with them.  They were a retired couple from Norway who were in town to meet their daughter who was flying into Minneapolis from Alaska.  We had about a 20 minute chat and my heart grew with happiness.

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I stopped in a lot of stores and tried on dresses looking for a new outfit.  I also took advantage of all the giant mirrors.

I had so much fun.  After my recent post I was inspired to try on a few gowns as well.  Look at this dress, could you imagine wearing it at ball?

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I had a wonderful adventure at the mall.  I look at my time as Hannah truly as adventures.  I never know what will happen.  Maybe I will find the perfect dress or talk to a retired pastor from Norway.  What I do know is that people are generally very kind and they might look at you as they have never seen a transperson before…and it’s possible they haven’t.

It’s impossible and a waste of time trying to determine what people are thinking when they see you.  Regardless of what they think, it can’t affect you.  How you think about yourself is the only thing that matters.  If someone does stare at me, I like to imagine they are thinking “wow, she’s tall” or “what a beautiful dress!” and “how does she walk in those heels?”.

People will stare, but mostly they just smile back.

Love, Hannah

This Beautiful Season

0007Every year, as the end of spring begins to flirt with the first breath of summer, you see beauty everywhere.  The blossoming of flowers, the bluest sky imaginable and breathtaking sunsets.

This time of year you see girls getting ready for prom or to be in a wedding.  This season stirs up the desire to be beautiful, the intense pangs of jealousy.  When I was in high school I would see my female friends at a formal dance and couldn’t decide if I wanted to in love with them or if I wanted to look like them.  It was an intense…awakening, a turning point in my life.  Ultimately I would choose both.

This longing to pick out a beautiful gown, to find the perfect heels and to have an amazing makeover doesn’t ever go away.  It’s always there…but it’s never stronger or louder than right now.  I didn’t go to prom when I was a senior, but I wanted to.  I was dating a girl but we broke up a few weeks before the dance.  We had planned to go, and I lived vicariously through her as she recounted her experiences of shopping for the gown she ultimately would not wear.  If I was honest with myself,  I wanted to go to prom as a girl.  I wanted to spend weeks looking for a dress, the shoes and accessories.  I wanted the makeup and hair appointment, I wanted the photos, the going out to dinner at an upscale restaurant, the limo…everything.  I didn’t even want to go with someone, it would have been enough to just go, to be my own date.

When my high school days passed I had hopes of being a bridesmaid.  I wanted to experience going dress shopping with other girls, trying on countless gowns…just thinking about it makes me smile.

I am lucky to have experienced so many moments as Hannah, but it also hits me on occasion knowing that there are so many things that I likely never will.  I’ve had many makeovers, many photographs taken, and I have a beautiful wardrobe.  But being the most beautiful girl at a gala, in the room, the center of a dance floor, or a wedding photograph feels impossible.

I think you all know what I feel.

Love, Hannah

Flying Pretty

One of my goals is to “fly pretty”,  a term that refers to going on a flight dressed.  I have no fear of doing it, but I have no travel plans on the horizon.  Flying pretty does take a lot of planning and really, there’s no going back once you get to the airport.

If you’re thinking about doing this, please watch this video by the TSA, and if you’ve ever flown pretty share your experiences in the comments.

Love, Hannah

Saying Yes to the Dress, the Heels, the Skirts…

Is there anyone on the planet that has a bigger, more emotional relationship with clothes than a crossdresser?

As far back as I can remember, I remember the pangs of seeing a beautiful dress and just yearning to wear it.  As I got older the feeling just grew.  There was always a longing in my heart when I heard of girls in high school shopping for a prom dress, and later, listening to my friends talk about wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses.

I think every one of us remembers the first time we wore a dress, the first time we walked in high heels, the first time we wore…anything and everything.

As I grew up and started to buy my own clothes, I remember the thrill of actually owning my own pair of panties, my first pair of heels.  Of course when I first moved out my wardrobe started to expand…and like many of us, the wardrobe ended up in the trash a short time later.  When we purged we all felt that this was it, we were never going to dress up again.  We could beat this, we could live without this.

Of course, we were all fooling ourselves.  It wasn’t long until we regretted the purge or until we were back at the mall, shopping all over again.  I purged more times than I would like to remember.  I have thrown away so many dresses and heels that I regret.

When I was in mid-20’s, I realized I was never going to change and I finally accepted that this is who I am.  My wardrobe started to steadily grow over the next few years and then I met the girl I married.  After a few months of dating, I told her about everything.  It was a shock to her but I was glad I was honest with her.  I knew I wanted to marry her and I knew I had to be upfront with her.  A few days before we moved in with each other, I purged for the last time.

Of course, it wasn’t long until I started buying panties again, but I was honest with her.  Soon I started to grow a wardrobe again and I never purged again.

Until tonight.

Kind of.

A little over two years ago, I decided it was time to make some changes and I cut back drastically on my drinking, started to exercise more and lost fifty pounds and I have kept it over since then.  I also dropped from a size 20 to a size 12.  I needed new clothes and my wardrobe started to grow again.

I cleared out my closet and I wondered what I should do with the clothes that didn’t fit anymore.  I finally found a perfect home for the clothes and I am excited it will help other t-girls.  More on this later.

Tonight I sorted the clothes that were going to be donated and it was very emotional.  I found the first dress that I bought years ago when I started my wardrobe for the final time, I found the dress I wore the first night I went out, the skirt I wore when I went out for the first time I went out during the day, the first dress my wife bought for me…

I am lucky to have the life, the wife and the clothes I have.  I am glad these clothes will go to other t-girls that will love them as much as I do.   I wanted to take a look back on some of these outfits and reflect on how important they were in helping me become…ME.  These clothes are a part of me and I truly loved them.

Love, Hannah

A Visit to Midwest Makeup

9Last month the MN T-Girls visited Midwest Makeup in the Uptown neighborhood of Minneapolis.  Owned by the fabulous Corrie, she not only runs an amazing store, she also does male to female transformations as part of her Femme Makeovers service.

I was fortunate to get a makeover by her when I visited her store and wanted to share my experience.  I’ve had a lot of makeovers over the last few years but I have to say I was blown away by Corrie and her techniques.  I’ve been using color correcting  to cover up my beard line, but the foundation and concealing technique she used was amazing.

What I loved about the makeover was watching her work.  Most of the makeovers I’ve had I faced the artist and didn’t see my face until my makeover was completed, but with Corrie I was in front of a mirror the entire time and was able to see her work.  I was able to see my face transform into someone beautiful and it was amazing.

Corrie is set up to do makeovers not only in her store but also in a private room should you so wish.  Corrie understands that many of us have a need for privacy and she is more than able to accommodate.

After the makeover, I did some shopping and purchased the concealer and eyeliner she used for my makeover.  I also picked up some custom made lip gloss for my wife.

I had an amazing afternoon and I cannot recommend Corrie and her store enough.  I know you’ll have an amazing time.

Love, Hannah

Ask Hannah!

For background, I am a straight, closeted crossdresser. I identify as a “sissy” meaning I tend to prefer frilly, innocent outfits (think baby dolls and Alice in wonderland) … dressing is arousing for me … and I am not interested in really being female in public.

Here is where I could use some advice. I have three outfits but I always feel intimidated to put them on (they are a bit over the top in terms of frills and lace so not really public appropriate). And when I do, I put them on and don’t really know what to do with myself. I’ll curtsy a few times in the mirror and then put everything away.  I think about dressing a lot but I don’t understand why I only allow myself a few minutes to feel pretty and then pack “Ashleigh” away. Do you have any advice as to why I might feel this way or ways to explore my dressing in more fulfilling ways?

Thanks!

Ashleigh

I like to think that the term ‘transgender’ covers a lot of different forms of gender identity.  Someone explained to me that the term covers any form of identification that is outside of the normal cultural norms that are associated with the gender that is assigned to someone at birth.  So, by that definition I believe transgender can cover everything from drag to transitioning.

As a lifelong crossdresser/t-girl, the world of sissy dressing is not new to me, although it’s not something I’ve ever explored.  However, I think part of us feel that there is a bit of a shift in personality as we go from one gender to another.  I certainly don’t feel that there is a lot of overlap in both of my lives/genders.  As I get ready and do my makeup, I definitely feel myself…crossing over.  It’s a strange feeling and not easy to explain, but I think many of us can relate.

I used to feel a bit of a blend between both sides of me, regardless of which gender I am presenting as.  But over the last few years, I feel the separation of my two sides are more defined than ever.  As Hannah, I almost completely withdraw from my male life.  I don’t do the things I would normally do as a male.  The same is true when I am in male mode.  When I am out running errands, I won’t drop by Sephora for eyeliner.  I’ll wait until Hannah is out.  It feels a little odd to me to do things as one gender for the other.

I think you need to let yourself slip into your other self.  You need to mentally shift into your other gender.  It’s easy to feel a little self-conscience as you dress and when you first see yourself in the mirror.  But let go of your male side and enjoy you are.

You may also consider exploring your female side in other ways.  You obviously love frilly dresses, but perhaps considering wearing clothes that are less “dress up” and more casual.  I think for some (not all) that dress up as a sissy do it as a fetish or a sexual thrill and for many of us, that’s where our gender exploration began.  It’s certainly where I began.  But I evolved, I tried other clothes that were less fetish-y and more appropriate for a night out or an afternoon at the mall.  Perhaps if you dressed in a way that would allow you to blend in, you may feel more comfortable leaving the house.

The clothes you wear can have a direct impact on how you feel.  I have a beautiful floor length ballgown that I absolutely love but I feel a little silly when I where it my living room.   I feel much more comfortable in a casual dress.  And killer heels.

I hope that helps!

Love, Hannah