A woman sat down near me at a restaurant today. She had on these beautiful black shoes. I immediately wanted a pair just like them.
When I get dressed every day (in male clothing), I barely even think about it. I pick whatever is on top of the pile, or is still wearable from a previous day, and throw it on. My wardrobe is all entirely interchangeable. Pretty much any shirt will go with any pair of pants I own.
When I shop for clothing (male), I do it as fast as possible, grabbing the first thing that fits and doesn’t cost too much. I just want to get it over with. It isn’t unpleasant, exactly, but feels somehow not very manly. Such vanity — the idea that I should be choosing clothing that flatters my appearance — feels very misplaced, and I go out of my way to avoid it. Not that I really want to make myself attractive as a man. In fact, the thought of trying to gussy myself up as a “good looking” man is sort of repulsive. It feels unmanly, but also un-me.
When I shop for women’s clothing, however, I linger. I consider many things, from where I might wear the garment, or what else I have that it might go with. I think about the fabric and the color and all of the little styling details. Ultimately, I pick things that I think will look good, feel good, and make me feel feminine. I pick things with attractiveness very much in mind.
When I dress as a woman, I take great care to make sure my outfit is stylish and unified and makes the most of the rather unfeminine figure I have. Taking such care feels somehow womanly, and it feels very much right for me.
In other words, making myself into an attractive man feels wrong. Making myself into an attractive woman feels right.
When I look at women, I mostly seek to learn from them — either their successful or unsuccessful looks. I seek to gain knowledge that I can put to practical use. What I’m often (always?) attracted to is the persona presented, even if it’s just jeans and a sweatshirt. Though this is my standard male outfit, I look at what women can do with exactly the same type of clothing and I feel like that’s what I want but can’t have. (It sure does make me want to change my body.)
When it comes to clothing, I see myself as a woman who just never gets the chance to dress like one. When it comes to my gender identity, I see myself as a woman who just never gets to feel like one.
These are, I believe, the very definitions of transgendered.