The word cross-dressing or what is now the archaic term “transvestite” means many different things for people. Yet, for those who have had no experience with cross-dressers, they picture a Drag Queen who is gay and feminine. This certainly is a myth.
Part of the problem with cross-dressing being understood is that it confusing and not clearly understood why someone cross-dresses. It is also not an act that is defined by being straight, bi or gay or Transgender. Yet, more and more cross-dressers are calling themselves Transgender as a protected class and an affiliation to latch onto.
The act of cross-dressing doesn’t mean that this individual desires a gender change or is latently gay or even bi-sexual. The truth is that cross-dressers can be any of the aforementioned and still be a cross-dresser. It doesn’t mean that they aren’t content with their current gender status.
When actress Angelina Jolie’s daughter wore boy’s clothing, the public was watching with baited breath as if perhaps Angelina’s daughter was gay. Yet, I think that this girl may just be a cross-dresser who is allowed to dress however she feels. So much of cross-dressing has been done in secret; we as a society are just not accustomed to it.
The fact is that most of the cross-dressers thought about cross-dressing as young as 3-4 years old. They started acting out on it around 7 when they borrowed their siblings or parents clothing. Many got caught and were punished. The cross-dressers didn’t quit dressing they just did it in a way not to get caught.
By the time high school came many of them threw away (purged) their clothes and went on to date. As one of my male cross-dressing friends says, “I wanted more to get into her bra then to wear my own.”
Some questioned if they were gay or bi because the lack of information at the time on cross-dressers and didn’t understand why they had this need to cross-dress. They had no one to share this act with. Many were conflicted as to their gender identity. Some sought professional help from a psychiatrist who often told them that they were not gay, just a cross-dresser.
Yet, the cross-dressing has nothing to do with their gender and their need to dress which continues through out their lives. It is something they are born with and to ignore it is not living their authentic self.
A bit complicated? Yes, but it is something that the public needs to know to better understand the act of cross-dressing versus the need to change gender. One is not the same.