Crossdressing Myth #4: It Is a Mental Illness

crossdressing myths

“A man dressed up like a woman?? Why… he MUST be crazy! This man needs help! He should be institutionalized! Hurry – get him off the street before anyone else catches this terrible mental disease!” Oh please. This attitude and severe lack of knowledge is so pre-1950’s. Crossdressing is a mental illness, babies come from storks, and the world is flat, right?

Myth: Crossdressers are mentally ill and that is why they have the urge to crossdress. Fact: Although it is possible for a mentally ill person to also be a crossdresser, crossdressing is not the result of a mental illness, but rather one of many personal traits that some people have genetically woven into them. This particular trait just happens to be widely misunderstood and have a social stigma attached to it.

In discussing this myth, I am reminded of an old TV show my father used to watch when I was much younger: M*A*S*H. This very popular TV sitcom of the 70’s and early 80’s was set in the Korean War. The character of Klinger regularly dressed in women’s clothes in order to display that he was “mentally unfit” for duty (i.e. crazy) in an attempt to gain (Section 8) discharge from U.S. military service. Although many found this character’s antics and attire amusing, the notion that crossdressing makes one “mentally unfit” is far from reality.

Crossdressing falls outside of what is currently socially acceptable. What is socially accepted and what is not, does not draw the line between sane and crazy. It pains me to no avail that much of society thinks terrible things about me because I am a crossdresser, but I am most certainly not crazy or mentally ill.

In regard to my own mental health, I’d like to share an interesting story. Long ago I was diagnosed with having severe chronic depression, which is classified as a mental illness. I grew increasingly dysfunctional and suicidal to the point where I was placed in a psychiatric hospital against my will. It was a truly dark and painful time for me. I tear up even today when reflecting back upon it.

Although I managed to function and survive on my own after a period of hospitalization, living with constant depression was just the status quo for me. It took more than 20 years after my initial diagnosis to figure out what was at the heart of my long-lasting struggle with chronic depression. Most of my troubles stemmed from the fact that I was living my life as a great big lie. In other words, I was a crossdresser trying my hardest to live my life pretending that I was not. Any trained psychiatric professional will explain that it is not healthy to live one’s life pretending to be something that they are not or denying themselves perfectly normal and healthy experiences (even if those experiences may not be considered socially acceptable).

I find it ironic that a lifetime of trying to suppress this integral part of who I am and pretend to be a “normal guy” would be at the heart of my mental illness. Once I finally accepted who and what I am, the great burden of confusion, guilt, self-hatred, low-self esteem, and a plethora of other emotional difficulties that contributed to my severe chronic depression all but faded away.

After figuring myself out, I went back to see the psychiatrist that had me institutionalized 20 years prior. I explained something I could not bring myself to confess years before: that I am a crossdresser. Over a series of sessions, he saw the connections between specific problems in my past and my trying (pretending) to exist as a non-crossdressing or “normal” guy. In essence, trying to live my life in a way that society might see as mentally healthy, is the very thing that lead me into my dark years of mental illness.

Although I still deal with reoccurring bouts of depression from time to time, it is a lot more manageable now that I have accepted and become comfortable with who I am. I now love rather than hate myself. The difference is truly night and day.

The pretending thing is a pattern I’ve noticed in many others in online crossdressing communities. The specifics are different, but the general stories are very similar. Crossdressers routinely try to live their lives pretending not to be and it causes some pretty serious negative complications in many of their lives.

It would be so refreshing if society would stop treating us so poorly and be more accepting of differences in people. There would be no need for such confusion among otherwise very normal, well rounded and completely sane people.

Crossdressing is not a mental illness. It is not a sickness, perversion, disease, affliction, condition, the work of the devil, or any of that other garbage many people seem to associate it with. It is simply who we are, and the only real problem with that is in how we’re treated by much of society.

I think that a lot of crossdressers do end up dealing with mental illness though, for many of the same reasons I did. Trying to suppress who I am was truly maddening and a terrible waste of so many years of my life. Never again though. This is who I am and love being a tgirl (if only part-time). I’d be crazy not to.

Related content: Crossdressing Myths


27 thoughts on “Crossdressing Myth #4: It Is a Mental Illness”

  1. Gabi: I’m an attorney. I have had considerable experience with mental health issues, both in my practice and private life, starting with my wife (chronic mild depression – an antidepressant “lifer”) and son (mild bipolar).

    Bottom line: if it’s in your genes, all you can do is manage it – it doesn’t get “cured”. Against that genetic background, compulsive behavior such as crossdressing, skydiving, etc. is just an overlay.

    Congratulations for managing your issues so well! (And beautifully, I might add!)

    Best… Marlene

    1. Thanks, Marlene. :) Managing my issues became a whole lot easier after self-acceptance on the crossdressing front. In fact, these days crossdressing is a great way to pick myself up if/when I do start feeling depressed. It works a hell of a lot better than Prozac! lol I was on Prozac for a period of time years ago, but it didn’t do much to help me, although I understand that it does well for others.

      I personally don’t see my crossdressing as a compulsive behavior but rather a simple need to be myself. I think crossdressing can be a compulsion in some people. I do not believe that one’s need to satisfy personal self-expression itself is a compulsion however. Most artists are probably not considered people with compulsive behaviors because of their very real need to create art. That is not to say that some are not compulsive about it. I’m not exactly sure where the line between “compulsion” and a general “need” exists because I know both are used in a variety of ways. Perhaps eating would also be considered a compulsion if one wouldn’t die from not eating. I think I may need to explore “crossdressing as a compulsion” in much more depth in a future post.

      When it comes to crossdressing, my psychiatrist treats that aspect of my life as a normal personal trait, aside from how society treats it. I am very curious about how it is treated in the legal system. I would imagine that in court, an expert (likely a psychiatrist or similar) would be called in to offer input on the subject. I can’t help but wonder if someone has (in recent years) been considered mentally unstable for [whatever] because it was brought up in court that they are a crossdresser.

  2. Gabi: In the legal word, transgenders don’t do very well. Many years ago I watched a M2F transgender Eastern Airlines pilot (that tells you how long ago it was) try to get her job back, alleging sex discrimination after management fired her for having the operation. She lost, with the appellate court holding that it wasn’t discrimination based on sex, but on doing something wierd to her body. (At least that’s thje way I read it.)

    I never did divorce work, but from what I read the issue of crossdressing comes up mostly in child custody battles, and it depends on a lot of factors – among them the prejudice of the individual judges, who in Family Court aren’t always the brightest bulbs on the Christmas tree. But I think we would all agree that a blatant exhibitionist father would have trouble getting the judge to give him custody of kids, whether he wears skirts, feathers, or whatnot.

    Prozac? It works for some, but there are many newer and better antidepressants out there. But some lazy physicians just throw medicine at the problem to see what works and what doesn’t. That’s OK if all other avenues of therapy have been tried, but it’s not OK in all cases – kids, for example. Both my kids were fed Ritalin when we didn’t know any better, and it’s probably a miracle they turned out so creative and successful as they did. (Video artists – both.)

    Thanks for your intelligent and informative blog. It’s a standout in the field.

    Best, Marlene

  3. Gabrielle I want to thank you for starting this website. It is interesting and an ideal place to discuss things that only a crossdresser would understand. I read a book once titled.. Look out for number one. The idea for the book was if what you are doing does not hurt anyone else that was ok. I think crossdressing is an outlet possibly a release for some other issue. If you just crossdress at home where no one would laugh at you then that’s ok too. I used to go to a local lingerie store that had a few crossdressers as customers. I actually think that the number is much more than imagined. Thanks again it seems like your site is getting better and better. Have a great week!


  4. Mental illness does not exist, cannot exist and will never, ever exist, because all psychiatry is 1,000% fraud from start to stop. This is the medicalized/scientized continuation of the Witch Hunts and the Holy Roman Catholic Inquisition. Disagreement is not biological illness. Crossdressing does not exist outside context of men in bras, bra forms & narrow underwear and women in jock straps or wide underwear, though ties are still a phallic symbol. Everyone is born naked. We should stress individual differences, not artificial “sex differences,” which are only style differences, in dress. The mental “health” movement is about social conformity NOT biological health and proper brain function. These people are extremely dangerous F-R-A-U-D-S and must be given ZERO credence. They do not identify diseases, they INVENT them to maintain whatever the conformity happens to be. Pants are a horseback invention, Roman soldiers were more masculine than any men you or I ever saw and they by God wore SKIRTS. Call them crossdressed and your head goes up on a pole but fast. If anything, skirts are male because men need more crotch free space than women. All traditionalists are brainless and totally stupid.

    1. @Charles – I wouldn’t go so far as to say all psychiatry is a fraud, but I understand the point you make. For the record, my own psychiatrist treats my crossdressing as a simple personal trait and encourages me to grow in this aspect of my life. In terms of the main point you make – those who have a problem with crossdressing and the fact that society and humans made up the whole social conformity garbage, I thank you for your passionate input on the subject. You made some excellent points about the idiotic social conformity standards imposed upon us.

      @Kathryn – I’m very sorry to hear that your husband behaves in this manner. His problem is not that he’s a crossdresser, but rather that he seems to lack respect for your possessions (wardrobe) and also for you, not to mention is unfit to be a father if he did indeed intentionally masturbate in front of your child and touched him inappropriately with his “boobies”. This behavior is disturbing and sickening. I certainly hope you intend to either get this man some help, or at least remove him from a position where he can cause any harm to your child. Please understand, Kathryn, that in this world there are sick, perverted men who disrespect their wives, and do terrible things to their children. Most of these men are not crossdressers. Sometimes, a pervert also happens to be a crossdresser and crossdressing becomes incorporated in their poor behavior. Being a crossdresser and being a pervert do not go hand in hand any more than the correlation between between one’s eye color and their propensity to being a criminal. I hope you will not think poorly of all of us because of the poor example of a man you ended up marrying.

  5. I am the wife of a cross dresser and it is a sickness…he masturbates in my dresses making me feel violated. He is obsessed with masturbation as he does this up to three times daily every day. I cant see how this is not a perverse act. He did this in front of our four year old son. My son is now scarred from the encounter. He was so upset he hid from my husband the rest of the day until I got home from work and my son proceeded to tell me that his father had rubbed his boobies on him… Maybe not all cross dressing men are sick…but mine is…

  6. Kathryn, what you are dealing with is not about the man who is crossdressing. You are dealing with a serious problem. Crossdressing or not, this person would act out in this way regardless. His mental state of being a molester is far from the fact that he crossdresses. You can find his behavior in all sectors of society, whether they crossdress or not. Remember, there is always going to be 1% of the population who is simply sick, as your husband is. The truth is that he is a sick man who happens to crossdress. He is not sick because he crossdresses. You should be ashamed of yourself too for not protecting your son from this criminal and moving out. Move out and turn him in. Sorry to be harsh, but that is the reality you need to protect your victimized son.

    1. Thanks for addressing the issue with Kathryn’s husband, Sophie. You’re right on the money – there are sick, sick people out there, and some of them also happen to be crossdressers. The two are not related. I’m not sure whether or not Kathryn will check back to read additional comments here, but I certainly hope she’s gotten her child the hell away from her husband, or at the very least, gotten her husband some professional help. If she loves her child and respects herself at all, she had better take some action (and hopefully already has).

  7. Ok this is related but not commenting on the article in general if that makes sense…

    To qualify and quantify my comments; I have studied psychology and abnormal psychology, both formally and independently. I have been on both sides of intensive mental health treatments, even though my pursuit of the clinical side was short lived. That being said…

    For the longest time crossdressing was seen as merely an aspect of transvestism. For those unfamiliar with the distinction transvestism is defined as ‘the practice of dressing in the opposite sexes clothing to derive pleasure, typically by a man.’ Please note that sexual gratification is not specifically listed it is implied but the modern definition is broad for another purpose.

    At first the word was used to identify what we now term as transsexuals. However it was broadened to include a study about men that crossdress and get sexual gratification from it, which at the time was believed to be the majority of crossdressers. This turned into a mental disorder in… not meaning to be flip, but in short order. For the bulk of the past century transvestism and transvestite was used as terms of mental disorder, behavioral disorder, mental illness, sexual deviancy, et al. It quickly became the clinical term for the illness in whatever guise it took. Although sourcing this on the internet is difficult and I am not intending to go research the dated material at my local library, transvestism is an ugly word and it is why it is so widely seen as a mental illness.

    Now for me to be dated. When I was last studying and participating in the mental health system, though it was not then considered an illness per say, it was looked upon still as symptomatic of deeper issues. I say this not as a subject that I have been able to find extensive modern research on but from my own personal experience.

    To make a long story as short as I know how. While in a juvenile treatment facility I found myself “caught” crossdressing. Well I was caught confiding to someone that I trusted about wearing women’s clothes. And that person secretly taped the bulk of conversation.

    When I was confronted about it there was great concern that I was a transvestite, I could tell right away. I managed to shift focus by alluding that I was gay. Then wearing women’s clothes was not an issue though being gay was an issue but less of one than wearing women’s clothing. When I approached my would-be “confidant” again knowing full well that I would be taped again I went into great detail about the gay sex parties I participated in (though I was a virgin at the time). Then I was told I needed to tell the group I was gay. When I did I was corrected in front of the group that I was actually bisexual and just confused by the orientation labels.

    So I went from a transvestite that was very worrisome to the treatment staff, to gay that was something I would have to have a few therapy sessions to deal with, to bisexual and kinky that was a 10 minute informative group piece which was mostly “we have to accept different sexual persuasions”, that was never brought up again afterward. Well other than the idea that I was somehow cooler for being bisexual, which in reality, I am not.

    Though I know that more acceptance in present in mental health today than it was even as little as 20 years ago, I am sure that there is still some bias and stigma attached to crossdressing. I am not sure if that is much insight into the mental illness part, but I think it might help to explain some of it.

    1. Holy hay-ride, Batman! That’s one hell of a ride through the ringer you took, Erin! :o I know that reality can be more interesting and entertaining than fiction… somehow I almost think you need to write a book about that experience. I don’t imagine that was the slightest big fun for you, but you did what you felt was necessary to survive and I’m glad you made it through with faculties intact. :) Twenty years ago, I would have never confided in anyone – not even my own therapist (whom I still see today, the same one) because I was buried do deep in self-denial. When I finally told my therapist of my crossdressing, just earlier this year, he (after a series of questions) determined that I am perfectly sane, show no signs of mental illness, and also quite normal (whatever “normal” is). Had he discovered this aspect of my life two decades ago, I believe he would have treated it the same – as in, I’m a sane person who happens to be a transgender. Had I been able to explore this aspect of my life 20 years ago, it would have saved me some very troublesome times… and the very reason I needed a therapist in the first place. So glad society forced me into secrecy and self-denial so that I was able to become the mental case that I was back then. What a terrible waste of my youth. Society caused my mental illness by not allowing me to be myself, or more accurately put, I caused my own mental illness feeling trapped without alternative within the constraints of our closed-minded and unforgiving society. Interesting how so many people in society feel that living a lie is more mentally healthy (or sane) than being oneself

  8. I cross dress occasionally and it helps me come to terms with being without femail company.I’m certainly not mentally ill,and definitely NOT gay.
    I lost my femail partner and my sister within 11 weeks last year. I got rid of all my partners clothes (CHARITY SHOP) and now I sometimes wear lingerie but it depends on whether I feel girly or not….but not all of the time. It seems to compensate for the strong feminine streak that I have always felt I had from a little boy.I am now 72 What the Hell! the’re only clothes…..Who cares anyway!? Mens underwear is the most boring and uninteresting garment ever conceived. Why dont they make mens underwear with lace? nice!

    1. Thanks for sharing, Gillian. I’m so sorry for your loss. I can only imagine how tough that must have been on you. I guess on the bright side, you seem to be dealing with it well today. :) I’m glad you’re comfortable with crossdressing in your own life. As you said – “Who cares anyway?” Funny thing is, the only people who really seem to “care” (read complain, fuss, and call names) are those who have no interest in it at all. To hell with them. Live life to the fullest, and above all – BE YOURSELF! :) To do anything less is a terrible waste of life.

  9. Gabrielle,your letter is very good it explains the subject very well, I am a cross dresser I also have gender dysphoria, which i am getting counselling for at the minute, what i would like to say to any one out there if you want to dress then go ahead and dress, dont let any body stop you, its your life so live it, life is too short to worry about what any one else thinks. jane Christine…

    1. @ Jane – Thanks for your comment, Jane. :) Gender dysphoria is a tricky topic. I believe that the “gender confusion” is generally caused by society’s expectations of people based on their genetalia. There are many complexities involved, not to mention differing opinions. If you’re confused or suffering, then counseling is a good move, so I’m glad you’re working through things the right way.

      And you so right – life is WAY too short. It’s time people started LIVING it, rather than worrying about whether or not others will approve. Unfortunately social taboos and the feeling of being alone and surrounded by opposition can be overwhelming, hence many people do experience significant trouble in (what should be) the simple act of being oneself. Life isn’t easy, but it’s damn shame to waste it in constantly seeking the approval of others rather than ENJOYING it being the person you truly are.

      @ Pythos – Negative stereotypes and lack of knowledge make it difficult to gain respect in the workplace, but not impossible. Many companies have rules that allow for various forms of self-expression and personal being. Even when it’s put into writing and in the employee handbook, it can still be troublesome to exercise one’s right to be oneself – even within the corporate allowances there of. “Fear” is a real bitch. It’s also a powerful illusion. I forget who coined the term, but: “Fear and worry are interest paid in advance on someone you may never own.” When out in public as Gabrielle, I am concerned about my personal safety and for good reason – there are indeed people who are just waiting for an opportunity to cause people who are different (than the norm) trouble/harm. These people are usually very few in numbers, but the danger element is trough to ignore.

      In the workplace, however, the potential for physical harm is greatly reduced as the potential to commit harm to another autonomously (as in get away with it before anyone can take names) is almost not a factor. It would certainly alienate me from many of my co-workers if I were to show up to work as Gabrielle, however it would not erase or otherwise alter my previous accomplishments and achievements for the company. The powers that be may decide that I have to go (and could legally find a way to terminate my employment other grounds), but that is not limited to the transgender angle. I’ve bared witness to discrimination (within the company I work) against people based on many seemingly insignificant things, from being a single parent, to having body piercings. If you can’t be yourself within a chosen profession, is that chosen profession truly worth it? Perhaps it is not as wide as profession, but rather limited to specific companies, but the question is the same. Is it worth it? This is a question you need only ask yourself and answer to yourself.

      In regard to the “sniping at one another”, welcome to the internet. :) Do not make the mistake of believing that all transgender folk (or people who’s personal expression/appearance differs from the societal “norm”) are on the same page or have the same goal(s) in mind. Do all left-handed people think alike? Do all women think alike? Do all sports fans think alike? Do all fans of a particular film or recording artist think alike? Do all artists think alike? Need I go on? Trans folk taking pot-shots at one another is not indicative of a “messed up trans community”. It is only a sign of the fact that transgender people are as different (from each other) and varied as any other slice of the population. In other words, it seems that we’re rather “normal” then… at least in that respect. ;) lol

  10. This discussion, and following comments are at the very heart of what I personally think is the problem with society in general.

    We are given these narrow boxes in which to live, and call them normal. But there is nothing normal about them.

    One of my biggest fears about discovery is that I will lose my reputation in the aviation world as a smart, enthusiastic lover of aircraft. I am known for getting aircraft, and machines to “behave”. I am afraid due to this stupid notion discussed here, that I will lose all of that because I choose to wear a skirt instead of pants.

    The woman with the husband that molests his child is a grand example of the mind set too many have. “He is a cross dresser, and it is an illness”. That kind of thinking is BS. Her husband is sick, that is true, but just because he likes the clothing of the opposite gender is not what makes him sick, nor is it a symptom of his major malfunction. His Masturbation in front of his son IS!!!

    But unfortunately due to the fact we hide, the only example of CDs that are seen or heard of are the ones that give us a bad name.

    I have waaay to much to lose to just show up skirted, without some major form of backing. But there are those of us that can do it, with little fear of repercussions, as long as there are numbers.

    That is the key.

    We also have to stop sniping at one another, which is something I have seen in other discussion forums.

  11. i am a cd from my small time.nw i am in 19year7 old.sme time i wear my mothers cloths.i love saries most.i wear with all the panty,u.skirt,bra,vest and evry thing.i am loving for a girl also.i like to a marage i want to know is my habit is a ill?how can i stop this!please some one help me.

    1. Hi Dinusha. No, you’re not sick or ill for having feminine tendencies or crossdressing. It’s perfectly normal. Unfortunately, it’s also fairly unpopular in most places, so if you feel like there’s something wrong, it’s probably because most people find this kind of thing undesirable (mainly because they’ve been taught to by others, and because they don’t understand it). Don’t worry about your “habit” – it’s not a habit at all, but rather who you are. Crossdressing may not be popular (in the eyes of many), but that doesn’t mean it’s wrong or that there’s something wrong with someone who crossdresses. It only means that it’s unpopular, period. It was once unpopular to be left-handed, or to believe that the world is flat rather than spherical. Just because those things were unpopular, it never meant they were “bad” things. It only meant people were ignorant to the realities of them. Again – you’re not sick, Dinusha, you’re just confused because you’ve been taught to think being feminine is wrong (if you’re genetically male). Do some more research and you will find that even psychiatrists, psychologists, doctors, and other well-educated, prominent members of society do not regard transgenderism (or crossdressing) as a bad thing, but rather as a *misunderstood* thing.

  12. It is easy to be in denial of the deep psyological issues asssociated with crossdresing, gender disorders etc. They are real issues but many choose not to address

    1. I appreciate your viewpoint, Steve, but don’t think you’ve done your homework on this. While being in “denial” about any problematic psychological issue is fairly common (and unhealthy), simply being a crossdresser or transgender does not, in any way, equate to having a psychological disorder.

      Many crossdressers do end up with some level of troublesome psychological issues because of the social stigma associated with crossdressing and their own insecurities about being one, but do not confuse that unfortunate reaction to social scrutiny with the notion of crossing itself being a disorder. Additionally, some crossdressers do have serious psychological disorders, but again, being transgender is not itself a disorder. Put things in perspective by looking at the fact that many non-transgender people have serious psychological disorders. I think it is safe to say that in most cases, non-trans people who have psychological issues that they are in denial about, are not suffering from their issues because they are non-trans.

      There are some crossdressers/transgender people who do, in fact, have psychological disorders that are either intertwined with, or directly the result of their transgender being. Suggesting that *all* crossdressers/transgender people have a disorder (as in crossdressing itself is the disorder) because some do, is much like suggesting that *all* people who eat food have an eating disorder. Of course, eating food isn’t a highly misunderstood and unpopular social taboo, so people tend not to give it the negative treatment crossdressing receives.

  13. Not work of the devil you say, well I recall seing a movie where the devil was woman, she could make me dress. :)

  14. Hello, been reading your blog most of this day friday dec. 7th 2012, this post although old i feel this comment to be relevent.

    i am 22 years old, and i am a crossdresser. i used to suffer from night terrors. however my parents feared i may have mental issues they thankfully never forced me into therapy. but once i personelly accepted that i am a crossdresser guess what…. the night terrors are gone!

    the point of my comment is thus. if crossdressing is the root of any issue it stems from denying a part of yourself just like i have a passion for auto tech i also have a femenine side that was (litterly) screaming to be let out and explored.

    -this is the first time i’ve shared this information with -anyone-

    (yes david is my real given name)

    1. Hi David, thanks for sharing. :)

      As you’ve discovered, even though this particular article was written some time ago (as was much of the content on this site), it is as meaningful and relevant today as the day it was published. It means a lot to me that people find their way here, and often, also find a little more clarity and peace in their lives for having learned more about themselves and others (like you and I) who have this in common.

      I’m very glad you chose to take the time to share some of your personal story and feelings. You’re a shining example of the beautiful transformation that occurs when someone stops denying who they are and chooses to accept and be at peace with it. Almost all emotional pain and suffering is the result of resistance. Acceptance can put an end to the suffering rather quickly, as you have illustrated with your example.

      Now your words shall serve as a positive message to others who find their way here years in the future. Your message will be no less relevant years from now as it is today. It is a snapshot of this time in your life. People will read it, identify with it, and find comfort and hope through it. :)

  15. Marlene, you mentioned that you are a lawyer. Have you had experience with an ex wife trying to use crossdressing as a way to gain full custody of a child? I am going through this now and although I have never dressed or spoken about crossdressing with my ex with the exception of the initial conversation more than 9 years ago, She has resorted to using this as a threat to blackmail me into giving up. your thoughts?

  16. This was shared with me once and it makes a lot of sense:
    “Beautiful is the operative word. It wants to be attractive, wanted, hot, sexy. The Human Male also is attracted to feminine. It wants to be intimate, close to, date, couple with feminine. So it ends up dating itself. It is attracted to feminine objects. He has to be his own girlfriend. This is the psychology of the behavior. He is also bullied by women, dominated by women. He is socially disempowered, bullied. Females are in control, dominant, in power. So he wants to be the Bitch, The Boss. This is the imbalance of power between Male and Female that is demonstrated in different ways. And often he looks in the mirror and grows to hate what he sees because his life is filled with pain and memories that leave him waking to regret that he is still alive. He desires to be free of himself, to make himself vanish and see something else where he was, something beautiful, everything he is not. He was abused as a child, dehumanized and he wants to erase himself with beauty. He thinks of suicide a lot, but she offers him escape. My best friend becomes her and takes midnight walks alone down a dark road so she can take over and he can be gone completely. It’s his alternative, even for a moment, the smell of her perfume, the feeling of her clothes, where he used to be and is no more. He looks in the mirror and sees her, and suddenly he loves what he sees, not him standing there but someone totally different.”

  17. Psychiatry is NOT fraud. It is the best and only way that people can be helped with life issues and mental illness or mental disorders. Charles science is everything. The science isn’t perfect by any means, but it’s the best we got. Also Gabrielle transvestism can be a mental illness. It depends if it causes distress to the individual, by saying it is a myth full stop is a myth within itself. Technically its transvestic disorder though

  18. Quite the interesting discussion. I’m 74 and have been crossdressing since I was 5 years old on and off. I’m certainly not mentally ill! Crossdressing allows me to express my very strong female side. I have always enjoyed relating to women more than men and enjoy female activities. To me it is a joy and a great relief to express my true self.


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