Rachel was the first person I met at the Chi chapter meeting when I was speaking to the group about my documentary on cross-dressing. Dressed as a woman to perfection, Rachel was stunning with high cheek-bones and big blue eyes. We connected immediately and have been in touch ever since. Rachel is straight, married with two children and works in construction.
Rachel agreed to be interviewed as a way to raise awareness on cross-dressing and is representative of many cross-dressers who are finally coming forward from the shadows to tell their story.
When do you first think about cross-dressing?
Around 6yrs of age.
When did you act on it?
Once or twice then, but more so at 12 yrs of age thru high school.
What did you feel when you knew you needed to “dress?”
Anxious, fearful of being caught, excited.
Did you tell anyone about your cross-dressing needs?
How often do you “dress” now?
Twice a week.
How has this journey in cross-dressing affected your life with your wife and kids?
Hard to say as my wife has known about it all along. Don’t have anything to compare it to.
Did you tell your wife about your cross-dressing before you were married? If not, when did you tell her and what was her response?
Before we were engaged.
Are you out publicly with your cross-dressing? If not, why not?
No, while very supportive, my wife doesn’t want people to know, and I’m sure it would embarrass my family, and possibly affect my career negatively.
What advice would you give to a cross-dresser who is just coming out and to the younger generation of cross-dressers?
Embrace your feelings. You are doing nothing wrong. Be discreet as it could be used against you with narrow minded people. It is no ones business anyway. Always do what is in your best interests, sometimes telling a person isn’t. Pretty simple really.
Do your consider yourself Transgender?
I guess. I don’t feel that I am in the wrong body. If wanting to express myself in the clothes of the opposite sex makes me transgender then I am. I quit worrying about it. Make up is a lot of fun too!
Is this the term now used for cross-dressers who don’t want to become a woman but want to dress like one or should it only apply to Transsexuals who feel they are born the wrong gender?
Good question. Humans have this need to label everything so they can get there minds around it. The term works for people like me, but I don’t know if it’s accurate.
Do you think that cross-dressers are more comfortable with coming out in public now that Transgender is becoming a more popular in films, TV ECT?
Oh yes! The internet has connected so many cross-dressers for support and encouragement, and role models never hurt either. But for so many of us who started out 30, 40, 50 yrs. Ago when you couldn’t find support, or information about it, we all need validation, or to feel that we aren’t alone. There are so many more groups to meet with, and society has become more tolerant of the practice for sure.
What’s next for cross-dressers?
Speaking only from personal experience I would say ANYTHING THEY WANT. Most of us are imprisoned in our own minds. We are scared and limit ourselves. It wont be easy for some to come out to everyone in their lives or try to cross-dress at work. But if you feel the need to do that maybe your transsexual. I tell the people who I trust and it’s nobody else’s business. I’m lucky, because I have worked at and found a look that doesn’t resemble my male side. So I don’t worry about people recognizing me when I go out. They still figure out I’m a guy quick enough, but it’s not illegal. For those who want to cross-dress but cant get a feminine look, find a support group. Get a professional makeover, get advice from other cross-dressers, it’s like anything else, if you want to be good at it, you need coaching!