March 31, 2011

On friendship and sorrow

Many crossdreamers (men and women who dream about being the opposite sex) are emotionally disturbed. Not because they are transgendered, mind you, but because being transgendered does something to you.

If we follow the stereotypes women cry on each other's shoulders. They talk in confidence about their disappointments, about love lost, about their loss of self confidence. They are not looking for solutions to their problems, but a place to vent, a place to be accepted and to find respect. Tears heal.

Men are conditioned by society not to cry, but they have their own ways of caring. My girl friend laughs when she sees movies and TV shows where men pat each other on the shoulder, sigh and stay silent. "Ah, that was a man hug!" she tells me. It was. And then the pals prove their love for each other by getting drunk.

This sharing of pain and love is mostly forbidden for crossdreamers. Heck, it must be hard for any transgender person, but confessing the idea that you get turned on by imagining yourself the opposite sex is -- let' say -- very risky.

I must admit this makes me feel very lonely sometimes, even among the best of friends. I had this absurd conversation the other day in a company dominated by gay men. They discussed freely their experiences as homosexuals, their attraction to men, their adventures and affairs and their struggle to adapt to heteronormative society.

Had I told them about my secret life, they would have understood. They would even have been sympathetic. But I could not tell them, because if I did, it would soon be known among many of my friends and colleagues.

If I had told my heterosexual friends I was gay, that would not matter. In my circles in sexually liberated Scandinavia being gay is not a big deal. Being a crossdreamer, however, is unheard of, and my fellow straight friends would have no place in their mind map to put me except for the perverted fetishist spot. Which is why I have to keep quiet about it.

When I read the many life stories published over at Crossdream Life, I see that crossdreamers find many ways of coping with this. Some tell their loved ones. Some of them lose their families that way, but others (as documented by blogs like My Husband is an Autogynephiliac and Yes, she is my husband) find acceptance.

Some find a good therapist. Again you may be unlucky and find a "professional" with a lack of empathy and understanding, but the psychologist, psychiatrist or sexologist does not necessarily have to know much about crossdreaming to be of help. What we need are someone with an open mind who is willing to listen.

Others hook up with other transgender people and many join transgender communities online. Some of them, like Crossdream Life and Rachel's Haven (explicit content!), are made by crossdreamers for crossdreamers, and the participants therefore find a safe place, avoiding some of the vicious attacks they may meet in other forums.

What do you do to cope?

5 comments:

harri said...

For most of my life, I have coped by living my crossdreaming life in my mind in fantasies. I didn't talk about it. I didn't act on my feelings.

But, now I want to find others like me in the *real world*. I want to express myself in the real world. (I want to wear my ex-girlfriend jeans, a girl's t-shirt and tom's shoes during daylight on a Saturday.)

And, I think I can do that, but I recently noticed that, I don't even remember what it is like to have close friends.

And, I have no idea what it means to be friends with another man who knows that I am a crossdreamer.

I haven't ever had male friends who knew that I was crossdreamer, and it has been years since I had "regular" adult friends.

At some point, I moved away from my friends and focused my attention on my work, dating, and then marriage and family.

I feel like I need to re-learn what it means to have friends.

Thanks for starting Crossdream life, I think it is going to help.

Corinna said...

Yes, it can be very lonely at times not being able for reasons like you mentioned, to let one’s heart out to a friend who just listens.
I’m lucky to have one and she can even lend me a professional ear since she’s a physiological therapist. I used to overload her with my trans stuff, which is not a good thing because I don’t want it to dominate our versatile relation.
So now I focus more on my on line friends to share my feelings. Writing really does help me to give some direction to the constant stream of thoughts.

Anonymous said...

Second Life is also an okay place to talk about this with others, if you find the right others.

Jack Molay said...

Thanks to you all for comments. I see now that I have to test out Second Life.

Jack

Cheryl Sussex said...

Perhaps Jack it is time for you to actually attempt to realise the thoughts in your head in the physical world? Maybe the intense frustration is mainly because everything 'is in the head' alone.

The brain can only be satisfied to a certain level in the dreaming world. From my AGP experience there are many levels that you go through. The door to the next level could be opening but your resistance to go though is causing you grief???

Experiencing different methods of using crossdreaming in your head, via fantasy such as Second Life, Fem Hypnosis, TG Captioning, Stories or just plain porn will always leave you at the brick wall.

I understand the 'next level' could be seen as a major and serious step, which may be wrapped up in fear and wonder as to where it could go. Whatever size, shape or age you are, you should have ago at expressing Rebecca. From reading between the lines I think you paint a picture of yourself as a very masculine appearance, which I guess puts you off trying? But it should not if this is the case. There are plenty of trans people out there who are masculine in appearance but still succeed in looking good. It is a learned skill that you don't get over night.

Does your girlfriend know about your crossdreaming? It may not be a long term solution but it may offer release in the short term. As I said this is only the second level your brain may be offering you, there are plenty more levels before complete madness takes over LOL.

I'm sorry if I may not understand your own personal crossdreaming experience (after all only you can) but say all of the above with the best intentions.

Join the Crossdream Life Forum!