Class Reunion En Femme and Unprepared (part 2)

insecuritiesThis is part 2 of attending my high school class reunion as Gabrielle, and reflection upon what took place immediately following. If you haven’t read part 1 yet, I encourage you to do so before continuing.

A quick recap
The opportunity to transform into Gabrielle was present on the day of my high school class reunion. Longing to get out of the house, into the world, and be among people as Gabrielle, I decided to attend my class reunion en femme.

Things were off to a bumpy start after arriving. Extremely nervous and full of insecurities, I clumsily fumbled my way through for a while. In time, I hooked up with some old friends and began to find my stride. I didn’t reveal who my man-side was, but they figured it out on their own. Unintentionally out of the closet and among accepting friends, my enjoyment level was through the roof. I felt invincible, though still a bit awkward at the same time.

As the reunion came to an end, my classmates invited me to meet up with them afterward at a local bar. Ready to take on the world, I accepted and headed out to meet them, en femme, in a town that is not exactly friendly toward people like me.

A voice of reason
On the way to the bar, I called my wife to let her know where I would be. I always let her know where I’m going when en femme, just in case anything goes wrong. Worried for my safety, she urged me not to go to a public bar en femme. I explained that I’d be among friends and nothing would go wrong, but she stuck to her position, fearing something terrible might happen to me. Long ago, I learned to trust my wife’s intuition regardless of how I felt. Believing nothing would go wrong, I agreed to return home anyway.

Coming down from an incredible high
The feeling of being out en femme and finding acceptance in reunited high school friends was simply amazing. All wound up and feeling good, I didn’t want to take off my makeup and go to bed. Being a person who generally does not enjoy social events, this was a rather extraordinary experience. I had a great time. I felt on top of the world. I felt invincible and was planning on going everywhere as Gabrielle. I had trouble sleeping that night.

The morning after – I did WHAT?!!!
It didn’t take long for the realities of the previous evening to start sinking in early the next morning. No longer under the influence of an adrenaline high, the realization of the fact that I am now out of the closet was doing some ugly things in my mind. I began to regret what I had done and started questioning everything. Did I put myself in danger? Dozens of people (perhaps more) know my “secret” now – a social taboo that comes with a terrible stigma attached. They know who I am (as in my man-side) and can easily find out where I reside. Did I put my wife in danger because of my actions? If any harm comes to her as a result, I’ll never forgive myself. What happens next? Even my wife expressed concern about the potential for vandalism now that people know. Is this just a heightened sense of paranoia? What have I done?

Coming out of the closet is a one-way street
What’s done is done – there is no turning back. A smarter move would have been coming out to trusted friends and family first, then taking things slowly from there. Instead, I chose my high school class. Most of them were anything but friends to me in high school and certainly not people I trust. Several of them did in fact look at me like I was some kind of freak show. I saw them laughing at me. I heard them calling out to me. It didn’t bother me too much the night before… but it was doing a number on me now. The cat is out of the bag and there is no putting it back in.

Troubling emotions and insecurities
Long before attending my reunion, I had communicated with other crossdressers about their first time out in public and interacting with people en femme. A common reaction described is second guessing of actions and regret. The psychology is similar to that of buyer’s remorse, however infinitely more complicated, especially in my case. I didn’t just get out in public en femme, I also came out to a whole lot more people that I’m comfortable with. My buyer’s remorse was quite a heavy load and I could feel myself emotionally buckling under its crushing weight.

From a feeling of invincibility and wanting to go everywhere en femme, all of a sudden I was questioning whether or not this aspect of my life was worth it or even healthy. Maybe I shouldn’t be doing this. Maybe I’d be better off if I just packed “Gabrielle” away and lived my life as a man (only) from now on. It would certainly be a lot easier that way… at least in terms of fitting into society. For the next several days, I had no desire to crossdress.

Knowledge is power
Riddled with emotional insecurities and questioning my own sanity, my trusted friend TVOW (pronounced: TEE-vow, an acronym for the voice of wisdom in my mind) helped me through. Even filled with self-doubt, TVOW reminded me of the reality – there is absolutely nothing wrong with who I am, at least not because of this aspect of my life. It is society’s misinformation, lies and rules of conformity that has once again infiltrated my mind during a spell of heightened paranoia. Thank God for TVOW – the part of my mind that never buckles under the pressure of an unaccepting society and its negative influence on me. Though feeling weak, insecure, and full of doubts, I knew better than to allow this to defeat me. As it has a thousand times before, this feeling of insecurity and self-doubt would soon pass.

For those who struggle, I hope you’re paying attention
I could easily write volumes about the emotional roller coaster ride that I experienced after going to my class reunion and coming out of the closet (or more accurately, being outed by my own poor planning). The point is that everyone has weak moments in life. Everyone questions their lives. It is important to remember that these feelings of insecurity are only temporary. Those who have knowledge, wisdom, and the courage to stand up and be themselves will conquer these emotions and grow stronger as a person. Those who do not… well, you have my sympathy. I was once weak and afraid to be myself, too. Although I may not be able to be myself for all the world to see just yet, mainly for safety reasons and job security, I’ll never renounce who I am. The only purging I’ll do is that of negative emotions and bad influences in my life. Regardless of temporary set backs and slow-downs, my journey in life shall move forward. My choice is to grow and evolve, not retreat.

There’s more to tell
I’ve outlined the experience of attending my class reunion en femme and the shaky emotional trip immediately following, but the story doesn’t end there.

In part 3, I’ll discuss:

  • My accomplishments and failures.
  • Some unexpected reactions from people at the reunion.
  • Life outside the closet.
  • My wife’s take on things.
  • Lessons learned.

Continue to Class Reunion En Femme and Unprepared (part 3)

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10 thoughts on “Class Reunion En Femme and Unprepared (part 2)”

  1. I always feel a wave a self-doubt after coming out to someone. The feeling is that you can never undo it, and the uncertainty can certainly be overpowering. I definitely relate to what you went through but again, I’m so happy for you. You accomplished a great deal and I know that you are better off for it :)

    1. Thanks, Jessica. :) Oddly, when I first came out (or was outed, really), it wasn’t so bad. Only in the days immediately following did my mind get the best of me as I felt terribly exposed. I am indeed better off for my experiences though. There is still some uncertainty (in terms of what was put into motion that day), but I’m pretty comfortable being out today. This is me, they know it, and I’m good with it. :)

  2. > there is absolutely nothing wrong
    > with who I am

    Damn right! <>

    I think you did well considering the strain it must have been. It’s one thing to be out and a about, but to be in a situation where people know your real ID too… that’s something else.

    1. Thanks, Lynn. :) Yeah, I got stuck in a mental funk for a while immediately after coming out to so many people like that, but it was temporary. I felt it was important to document that fact – the tough emotions after going out AND coming out. I’m sure it is different for everyone, but the emotional insecurities are a normal part of the process (considering how society treats people like us in general). I’m forever changed and different for what has taken place, but it’s in a good way. Stronger, faster, better… heck I’m bionic! lol Ok, showing my age now. You get what I mean though. :)

  3. Gabrielle, what an adventure. Now that you are “out” I recommend going out without being out. Visit a nightclub or perhaps a mall far enough away en femme, and just be Gabrielle. I think you will find yourself lighter on your feet and freer of mind if you are not lugging around your male persona.

    There is a different sort of liberation in this experience. You have completely earned it.
    Wow. What an experience…. Petra

    1. Thanks, Petra. :) Funny thing – I was replying to Lynn as you were commenting, and just wrapping up my comment on your blog before heading back here to find yours.

      Yes, I agree wholeheartedly – I’d like to get out and simply be “Gabrielle”, period. I’ve already gone for additional outings as Gabrielle, which I’ll be sharing as soon as I can catch up in my writing. In terms of nightclubs, there are dozens around here. Trans-friendly nightclubs are a different story. There are not many at all, and venturing out to “regular” places has proven to be rather… well, dangerous and scary. Too many low-brow knuckle-draggers filled with hate around here. :( I’m still researching and looking for places, even if I need to drive a little father to get there. I jumped in the deep-end first with my class reunion, and though the experience was very good for me, I’d like to do things a little more intelligently and learn how to swim a little better now, so to say. :)

  4. If it’s sink or swim, I’d say you swam quite well.

    I’m sure I would have wanted to crumble had I have been in that situation.

    Well done.

    1. I was referring to the original (with Lee Majors), but you are correct, Lynn! :) Tempted as I am to geek out with memories of the show (and my major crush on Lindsay Wagner in the spin-off show), I’ll spare you. lol Instead, I’ll simply run off into the distance, in slow motion, making bionic noises… in my favorite heels!

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