Setting Things Straight

I keep my Twitter Direct Messages open because I love getting notes from guys where the only thing they have to say is “hi”.

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This is sarcasm.

But seriously, I do enjoy getting messages from other t-girls and making new friends.  Most messages from boys consist of pictures of their stupid penis or “WYD”.  Please stop doing these things.

Over the last week I have gotten several messages where the guy says something along the lines of “OMG ur so hot and I am straight but ur beautiful”.

So, let’s talk about this.

First of all, I am not interested in guys, even if I wasn’t married.

Secondly, Hannah is a GIRL.  If you think I am cute or whatever then you think a GIRL is cute.

If you are a boy and you think a girl is cute that is about as straight as it gets.

Telling a t-girl (t-girls are girls!) that you think she is cute despite the fact you are straight tells me that you look at t-girls as boys dressed up as a girl.  Perhaps you are not consciously doing that, but please remember that being attracted to a t-girl is being attracted to a girl.

And really, get over yourself.  Sexuality, like gender, can be fluid and complex.

I didn’t spend $70 on a makeover and dedicated years learning how to strut in stilettos for some dude to think of me as a boy.

xoxoxo

Love, Hannah

 

 

 

Overthinking in Lingerie

xI don’t think it’s uncommon for us to modify how we identify throughout our lives.  As soon as I heard the word, I privately considered myself a crossdresser.  About ten years ago, I knew this was more than just finding joy and comfort in clothes that are typically associated with the gender different than the one I was assigned to at birth and I felt that identifying as transgender was a better fit.

If I wanted to put a finer point on myself, bi-gender is probably the best word for me, as I am happy and comfortable and secure presenting and living as either a boy or a girl. However, since transgender covers a lot of territory, I primarily stick with that.

Whether I am a crossdresser or transgender, I would never be so bold to claim to be brilliant, but I can have brilliant thoughts.  I’ve been a bit of a shopping spree lately and yesterday I received a super cute cami and panty set from Xdress.  Yesterday was a long day and it was a late night, so falling asleep in cute lingerie was the perfect way to end the day.

If you’re not familiar with Xdress, they make lingerie for men.  The models on their website are men wearing their beautiful bras and panties.  From what I gather, their target market is men who love to wear cute, feminine undies.  Their models are very male, no makeup or wigs, they are not presenting as a girl.  This lingerie is different than En Femme and their new Carmen Liu line of lingerie.  This lingerie is beautiful but also practical as it is designed to hold breast forms and to tuck our feminine flaw.

As I woke up this morning, I realized that my lingerie wardrobe is divided between bras and panties that I wear en femme and bras and panties that I wear in male mode.  Although this new set from Xdress is beautiful, it’s not something Hannah would wear.  When I am dressed, I have different needs from my lingerie.  I need my gaff from the Breast Form Store, for example.

In male mode I do wear lingerie “for girls” and lingerie from Xdress and Homme Mystere.  I underdress each day and my panties are either panties “for boys” or panties “for girls”.  I am always wearing something.

My revelation this morning was that we can shift our gender identity throughout our lives, but we can also shift our gender identity throughout the day.  I decided that when I am in male mode, I could be considered a crossdresser.  But Hannah is not a crossdresser, she is transgender.  I could wake up in cute lingerie like I did this morning, wear a matching bra and panty under my boy clothes, and I would be crossdressing all day.  But as the day progresses and I am preparing to go out, my gender identity shifts to being transgender.

I suppose that labeling ourselves is rather pointless and I doubt anyone else thinks about this as much as I do, especially before they have had their coffee, but this was going through my mind as I lay in bed.  Never let it be said that I don’t overthink.

At any rate, I am now awake, having my coffee, and sharing these perhaps not as brilliant thoughts I had imagined they were with you.

Love, Hannah

 

 

 

Pumping the Brakes

As I’m sure you’ve seen, there’s been a lot of ‘Ask Hannah‘ questions lately.  I love getting them and I hope you enjoy reading them.

It’s pretty clear we are all doing some soul-searching and deep thinking and reflection these days.  I know I am.  For some of us we are thinking about our gender identity and what this side of us means to us.  It’s clear this side means a lot to us all.

Reflection is a good thing.  It’s good to reexamine our lives from time to time and evaluate what we want.  I urge caution when it comes to making major decisions when it comes to our gender identity during a pandemic.  Some of us are spending more time en femme as we shelter in place.  Some of us are spending less time.  When we have experiences with something, we realize how important those experiences are.  If we have more of them, we may realize we want even more.  When we have less, we may realize that we actually need them.

Regardless if we are spending more time or less time en femme or even underdressing, we are probably thinking about what this side of us means and how we want this side of us to be present in our lives.  Again, this is good, but it’s also important we are aware of being influenced by the pink fog.

Essentially, the pink fog is when we make decisions influenced by our love and connection to our femme selves that we may not have thought through.  Since we are under a lot of stress and change, fear and uncertainty, this is probably not the time to make any permanent changes.  This is probably not the time to start hormones, now is probably not the time to transition.  Before we make any decisions, whether or not we are under a global pandemic, it’s essential we do these things under the guidance of a gender therapist or a doctor.

And I get it.  I am itching to get back in touch with my femme life.  I miss Hannah.  I’ve been spending a lot more than usual ondresses and lingerie and shoes, so I am not immune to the pink fog, either.  I’m wanting to have “the talk” with friends in my life about all of this, but I have to tell myself to slow down, pump the brakes, and wait until things calm down a little before I make any choices.

Love, Hannah

Ask Hannah!

I would like you to comment on what books you have read and would recommend to others on the CD-TG experience…
As for me, I just did a re-purchase and re-read of ”My Husband Betty”, as written by her wife, Helen Boyd (pseudonym).

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One of the first books that I read about girls like us was “The Lazy Crossdresser” Charlie Jane Anders.  It’s been years since I read this but I remember it had a lot of good information about makeup and presenting femme.  It was light, funny, and pretty breezy and discussed gender identity without diving too deep into the why or the deep soul searching and psychological aspect of this side of us.

 

 

614EoVmPFqL“My Husband Betty” by Helen Boyd is a very important book to read if you have a significant other.  Ms. Boyd does not pull any punches or sugarcoats anything when to comes to being married to someone like us.  She talks about the times when she went out with her spouse while they were en femme, her first reactions to seeing them in a dress…  It’s honest and sometimes hard to read as her feelings and thoughts are very similar to what our own significant others go through when it comes to girls like us.  Knowing what she’s feeling makes us remember that our partners likely feel this way too.

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“Yes, You are Trans Enough” by Mia Violet is wonderfully honest and personal.  For a long time I was reluctant to identify as transgender as I felt that since I wasn’t going to transition that I wasn’t, in her words, trans enough.  But I am, and we all are, if we chose to identify that way.  This book is a reminder that there are no benchmarks we need to meet, no criteria or qualifications necessary for us to identify however we feel is right.

 

JKP Books publishes a lot of wonderful books when it comes to gender.  I would recommend anyone checking them out.

What’s on your bookshelf?

Love, Hannah

Have a question for me?  Oh yes you do.  Ask me here!

Ask Hannah!

This might be a weird question, but I just passed the anniversary of my biggest milestone, so I wanted to ask you:

In your “journey” (I know you hate that word) as Hannah, what would you say have been your biggest milestones? I have a few that I would happily share in a comment, but I’ll keep this brief… so what are some of the key moments that have defined who Hannah is today?

Congratulations on your milestone!

This is a really good question.  Thank you for asking it.

I thought about this for a while and I think this comes down to four key instances.

If I look at who I am as a journey (and yes, I totes hate that word but dammit if it isn’t an appropriate one), then my journey started when I was very young with trying on my mom’s heels, being fascinated my lipstick, dying to try on lingerie, buying my first dress, and so on.  I remember progressively going from underdressing to sleeping in a nightgown to learning makeup.  All this time I was discovering who I am, and how I wanted to look and what felt right.  As we learn makeup and build our wardrobe, we learn what we like and what looks suit us.  In many ways, my first real wig was the end of one part of my journey but also the start of another.  It was the final part of moving on from identifying as a crossdresser to realizing that all of this was more than just clothes.  It was about identity.  I didn’t know it at the time, but I should have realized at that moment that I was transgender.

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I remember looking into the mirror for who knows how long the first time I was in full makeup, a dress, and a wig.  I didn’t look like me, and I was a far cry for what I look l like today, but at that moment I had never felt more beautiful.  I realized I had wanted to look and feel beautiful for my entire life.  It was one of the happiest moments I can remember.

The second instance was about a year after that.  After dressing fully at home and plucking up the courage to go out at night, I was ready to step out during the day.  I planned a day where I would wake up early and go into Minneapolis to buy a coffee at a cafe.  That was the plan.  That was the dream.  It was something I did almost every day in male mode, but this, this was something new.

This was significant in many ways as it was the first time I was interacting with the “real world”.  I had been out at night a few times to a LGBTQ+ nightclub, but this was my first time at a normal, everyday place and being seen by others outside of the LGBTQ+ community.  I had fears of people laughing at me, pointing at me, being harassed, and worse.  Thankfully nothing like that happened.  I was so ecstatic from the non-eventful reactions from others that my confidence shot way up.  No one cared.  Sure, they knew I was trans, but I don’t think anyone really gave me a second thought and if they did, I didn’t notice.  Although I had planned on only getting a coffee, I ended up going to two malls, a few other stores, and out to lunch.  This experience gave me the confidence to go out again.  And again.  And again.

The third milestone was the first meeting of the MN T-Girls.  I had been attending a trans support group off and on for a few months and it was a wonderful group with incredible girls.  But I didn’t really fit in.  The group was mainly attended by girls who were or had transitioned and many of the meetings involved conversations about hormones, surgery, and the legal process of legally changing your name and gender.  It was an important and necessary group for our community and I am glad it existed.

But my journey (ugh) was something different.  I had no plan or wish to live full-time or transition.  The group wasn’t for me.  So at the suggestion of my wife, I started to create a group for girls like me who weren’t necessarily looking to transition, and girls who just wanted to make friends and hit the mall.  Yes, it’s a little shallow, but my thought was that I can’t be the only one who wants to look cute and wander around a mall looking for heels.

Thankfully and surprisingly, I learned that I wasn’t.  Not by a long shot.  Today the group has close to 300 members and has been going strong (well, on hiatus under the shelter-in-place orders) for over six years.  But the group had it’s humble beginnings.  Our first meeting was in a coffee shop with about a half-dozen attendees.  Having others show up was huge.  If they hadn’t, I probably would have ended it right there.   But that day was the start of something I am very proud of.

Finally, modeling for Glamour Boutique and En Femme has been incredibly significant to me.  Doing my makeup, finding the right wig, and creating my look has been a humbling process.  I cannot tell you how many times I looked in the mirror and wanted to give up.  There are countless days where I spend an hour doing my makeup and seeing a boy in the mirror.  I have felt fat, felt ugly, felt too tall, too… male.  There have been days, there are still days, and there will always be days where I feel this way.  It happens.

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But modeling has helped me feel beautiful.  I know it’s shallow.  I really know this.  But being considered pretty enough to model clothes and represent a business is incredibly affirming to me.  When I feel ugly or male, and I do a lot, it’s helpful to look at photos from a shoot or to look at the clothes I will be modeling next.

As I look back on all of these moments, I realize that all of them boosted my confidence in some way.  Whether it was how I looked or being able to create something.  Going out into the real world requires a lot of confidence, but a positive (or at least not a negative experience) can also boost your confidence.  I can do this.  I AM doing this.  I think when I present as male I take my confidence for granted.  I could look in the mirror and shrug and tell myself that this is just how I look.

But being en femme is a different story.  Looking male in a dress can crush my self-esteem.  A bad makeup day can be devastating.  Someone staring at me (in a rude way) can destroy me.  Although I can strut through hell with my head held high, I am faking it most of the time because I know that someone pointing at me or a bad wig day can reduce me to shambles.  It can often take an $80 makeover and a new dress to make me feel beautiful, but all it takes is a suppressed smile or a mean comment on Twitter to ruin my day.  Or week.

Anyway, that ended up getting depressing.  🙂

I loved this question and I would love to hear about everyone else’s milestones in the comments.

Love, Hannah

Have a question for me?  Oh yes you do.  Ask me here!

Ask Hannah!

Since we are all in this isolation together, I was wondering about your at home life. Does your wife care if you are dressed as Hannah everyday at home? Or does she want you dressed as a male at times?

At home I am always wearing… something.  It could be a nightie or underdressing or leggings and a femme t-shirt.  Being completely en femme is, to be honest, a lot of work.  It’s work I love and I enjoy every moment of it, but I usually do not fully dress if I am staying in.

Just as I enjoy having two genders, my wife also enjoys both sides of me, but in different ways.  If Hannah was always here, well, my wife would miss her husband and I never want Hannah to overstay her welcome.

My wife wrote a little about her thoughts, feelings, and experiences with this side of me and it’s well worth reading.

Love, Hannah

Have a question for me?  Oh yes you do.  Ask me here!

This Too Will Pass

Hi girls,

As many states have shelter in place guidelines and we are all doing what we can to slow the spread of COVID-19, most of us are spending a lot more time at home.  For some of us, this gives us more opportunities to dress and work from home en femme.  For others, it means a lot less time to dress.

Being who we are is essential, and I personally know that these past two months have really shown how vital it is for me to be me.  Yes, I can dress at home, but it’s not the same.

Still, I am thankful that I have at least that much.

We all know how we feel when we cannot express ourselves.  It’s not uncommon for us to feel depressed, anxious, and frustrated.  I know how you feel.  We all know how you feel.

I recently wrote an article for En Femme about how this point in history can impact this side of us as well as what we can do to still stay in touch with our femme side.  I shared some ideas about everything from practicing walking in stilettos to watching makeup tutorials.

But on a more serious note, I wanted to advise caution when it comes to having “the talk” with your significant other in times like this.  Yes, you and your partner are likely having a lot more time together, and it might seem like a good opportunity to share this side of you if you haven’t already.

When we come out, we need to be aware and respectful of how our partner is feeling, or anticipating and being prepared for how they may react.  This revelation will forever change your relationship and will likely cause stress and tension and a lot of questions.

With the world the way it is currently, things are stressful and scary enough.  Adding something like this revelation into the mix is going to make things even more stressful than they already are.

I understand wanting to have this talk right now.  If you are feeling stressed and tense because you can’t dress,  it’s natural to want to have the talk to have the chance to be en femme.  We always need to be aware of the pink fog and how this side of us can cloud or judgement and we may make decisions that might seem like a good idea at the time, but we are not thinking about the impact these choices will create.

If you need support, and we all do, please seek it out.  This is a good time to remind us all of Trans Lifeline.

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Trans Lifeline is a national trans-led 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to improving the quality of trans lives by responding to the critical needs of our community with direct service, material support, advocacy, and education. Our vision is to fight the epidemic of trans suicide and improve overall life-outcomes of trans people by facilitating justice-oriented, collective community aid. 

Need to talk? Call! Our peer support hotline is run by and for trans people. We’re available 7am-1am PST / 9am-3am CST / 10am-4am EST. Volunteers may be available during off hours.

Take care of yourselves, girls.  This too will pass.

Love, Hannah

 

Ask Hannah!

Knowing what you know now, from a hypothetical view, is there anything you’d do differently or do as before?

Hmm.  Wow.

Let’s… ah, reflect on this.

0222It’s easy and natural to look back on your life and think about what you did, what you should have done, and what you wish you did.  It’s not necessarily healthy or recommended, but it is what it is.

Since I tend to look at everything from two sets of eyes, I also think about situations from Hannah’s perspective, or at least with this side of me as a factor.

Of course there are things I wish I had done differently.  There have been dresses and heels that I kick myself for not buying or outfits I regret purging, but there’s nothing I can do about that now.  🙂

On a more serious note, there have been conversations I’ve had with friends where I thought to myself at the time that this would be a perfect and appropriate moment to share this side of me with them.  But the opportunity passed.

We often don’t have the perspective until later where we wish we had done something differently or taken advantage of a situation.  Sometimes we wish we had done something or didn’t do something, but given more time we realize that perhaps we did indeed make the right call after all.

I can’t really think of anything specific that I wish I did that I don’t think I will have the chance to do so in the future.  Conversations with friends where the time was perfect to talk about who I am may have passed, but there can come around again, either naturally or by sitting down to have that discussion.

I don’t want to regret anything.  No one does.  I don’t want to be at the end of my life and wish I had done this or that.  Not to be… dark or anything, but this moment feels like a chance to examine our lives and think about what we want.  Right now we are confined to our homes, we can’t go out (and we shouldn’t) and I spend many moments throughout the day thinking about where I will go, what I will do, and what I will wear when these days are over.  In a way, it’s like a second chance.

Perhaps I took time for granted before shelter in place became a thing.  I always thought there would be time to do what I wanted or go where I pleased.  But we don’t have that freedom today.  It’s easy to think about what we wish we did before now.

When this passes, I am going to do these things.  I am going to wear that dress, I am going to schedule that photo shoot.  I am going to have that talk (eh, probably not).

I do have the perspective and appreciation that my life is amazing beyond my wildest dreams.  Not only when it comes to this side of me, but I have a wonderful wife, a job I enjoy, a home, friends, and my health.  Everything worked out.

So, I really can’t think of anything too specific that I would have done differently…

Well, scratch that.  Perhaps there is one thing.

I wish I had come out to my mom differently.  I wish I had waited until I identified as transgender as opposed to identifying as a crossdresser.  Coming out with a gender identity, as opposed to revealing that I have a very different wardrobe than what most men have are two different things in my opinion.  I came out to her in regards to what I do, what I wear.  These days I would come out as to who I am.

Love, Hannah

Have a question for me?  Oh yes you do.  Ask me here!

Ask Hannah!

I read your “what a girl wants” article on the En Femme website and it was awesome. After reading it, I have ordered 2 matching panty/gaff and bra sets, nude patent pumps and black slingback pumps, some sexy lingerie (babydoll and cami set) per your advice. I already had some cute black ankle boots and some black knee length dress boots. I don’t have a LBD yet ( but am looking into it). What are some other essential items?

A wardrobe starts off with thinking about what we need for what we do. It sounds like you have a lot of the basics covered!  At least what I think are basics.  🙂

I present as male for most parts of my life.  Work, family gatherings, day to day errands…  Hannah does the fun stuff.  Saturdays at the mall, wandering around an art museum, relaxing at home, dinner out with the MN T-Girls…

Hannah doesn’t have to go to work, sit in on meetings or attend Zoom conference calls.  Since she doesn’t have a real job (if you follow me), she doesn’t need to have professional work attire.  Sure, there are things in my closet I could wear to work…

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…but I don’t need a lot of clothes for “the office”.

If you are full-time and/or present at work, then some clothes will be considered essential.  Depending on where you work, of course.

Since Hannah pretty much does only fun stuff, my wardrobe is built around that.  There are dresses perfect for Saturday night, Sunday brunch, happy hour or meeting for a coffee.

When you build your wardrobe, think about you’ll be doing and where you’ll be going.  Find an outfit that would work for that.  If you are unsure about what to add to your closet, look at what other girls are wearing.

And you can choose to completely ignore what you see.  When I go to the mall I see mostly girls in leggings and comfortable clothes.  Not many of us are wearing heels.

Many of us dress at home, so I would recommend having cute clothes to be comfy in.  If I am being lazy on a Sunday morning and want to look cute, I skip the stilettos and pencil skirt and wear a femme t-shirt and leggings.  A corset and stockings is OMG one of the sexiest things to wear to bed, but most nights I slip on a nightgown.

I hope this helps but I bet a lot of girls reading this have their own suggestions and I would love to hear what everyone else thinks is a must-have for their wardrobe.

Love, Hannah

Ask Hannah!

-As a part time t-girl, have you ever considered taking hormones to get closer to your feminine self?

– I recently started HRT with the hope of my body turning more like it “should” have always been. I understand this is some kind of a hopeless effort to try and “pass” as a woman too (since I’m more genderfluid than in the wrong body). I was wondering – if not indiscreet – whether you went through HRT yourself or not, and if that boosted your confidence level, or if you just decided to just use breast forms and wigs and not change your body.

I have no personal experience when it comes to HRT (hormone replacement therapy).  I have never felt like permanently modifying my body was something I needed to do, or wanted to do.  

I see my body as a blank slate, a new piece of paper, and that I can wear whatever I want to.  Obviously my body has characteristics that are typically associated with being physically male, but except for the occasional bouts with dysphoria, I don’t think my body holds me back from presenting as whatever gender I feel like presenting as.

I do wear breast forms, thighs pads, and hip pads as they help with providing a curvier figure.  Since most dresses and skirts are designed for someone with a more shapely body, these forms make my clothes fit and look better.

I don’t feel I was born in the wrong body.  I don’t feel that being assigned male at birth holds me back in any way from wearing what I want or identifying however I wish.  Having the box for “male” checked on a form is a way for others to label me, and it’s not something that I allow to limit who I am.

I like both of my genders.  I like being able to go back and forth.  I don’t want to do anything to my body that is typically associated with either one of my genders, be it growing a beard or developing breasts.  I feel limitless in terms of my gender presentation.  I don’t like being limited in terms of what I can wear.  Let’s face, society already does that for us.

Love, Hannah

Have a question for me?  Oh yes you do.  Ask me here!