Tag Archives: acceptance

One Year Ago, I Came Out to My Wife a Second Time – As a Trans Woman

Gabrielle 2013 tears to 2014 smiles

On November 16, 2013, after returning home from a transgender support group in Syracuse, I revealed to my wife that need to transition. This came long after I had figured out it was the only way to save my own life. Explaining this to my wife was terrifying. It was the most difficult conversation I’ve ever had. There was a lot of crying – most of it mine. I think both our hearts broke that night. I know mine sure did. It wasn’t just my heart that broke… I broke, period.

Unlike when I came out to my wife as a “crossdresser” in 2008, coming out as a trans woman in 2013 didn’t go so well. She doesn’t consider herself a lesbian and doesn’t want to be in a romantic relationship with a woman (or trans woman).
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Being a Successful Trans Woman in Public without Passing

Gabrielle Walking 2 2014-07-06

Passing without passing
The photo above shows me walking through a local mall carrying my bag of goods. That’s how I look to most people – just another random woman shopping in the mall. Until, that is, someone looks directly at me from 20 meters or closer. Contrary to the carefully chosen photos I post publicly, I don’t pass – not in person. Most people read me as trans without missing a beat. More importantly, most people treat me very well.

The right attitude goes a long way
Years ago, when venturing out into public I’d get laughed at every time. Getting laughed at, disparaged, and called names by homophobic/transphobic cowards made me self-conscious and fearful of going out. In retrospect, I understand the difficulties I used to experience.

Other trans women frequently told me, “It’s more about attitude than passing.” How can attitude affect how one is viewed by others? It took me a few years to figure out. Having the right attitude in public can be the difference between having an amazingly positive and enjoyable experience, or not. It’s a little like a magic trick, but it’s not magic. There’s something more powerful at work, and it’s not just attitude, either.
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Talking to Teens and Coming Out to Mom

Gabrielle and MomLast week, Thursday was a day of teaching, personal growth, and another adventure in coming out. It started out with an early morning SafeZone presentation at a local high school.

Along with two other speakers, I was deployed by the GAGV, to educate teenage students about LGBTQ realities, share our personal stories and struggles, and answer questions. The school’s health teacher requested the presentation. There was a complete lack LGBTQ coverage within the standard curriculum in my school days (back in the 1980’s). This is, unfortunately, still pretty much the standard today. It’s promising to know there are such forward thinking teachers working hard to offer more of a real-world and well rounded education, above and beyond the status quo.

Talking, sharing, educating
Matthew (not his real name), a well spoken and very stylish gay man in his 30’s (who runs a local gay youth group) started out the presentation with a general overview things, and then we each told our personal stories. I went first, followed by Linda (not her real name), an attractive 30-something lesbian, and then Matthew. Having only met Linda and Matthew for the first time only minutes before the presentation, it was really interesting to hear their stories.

After sharing our personal stories, Matthew did a superb job explaining aspects of LGBTQ people that are often confusing to “straight” folk. The social structure in high school can be pretty brutal and restricting. As a result, teenage students may be reluctant to ask questions (verbally, in front of the class) out of fear of ridicule by their peers. We asked them to write down their questions on a piece of paper and place it in a basket that was passed around the room.

Getting shy teenagers to open up
During our first of two presentations, very few questions ended up in the basket. For the second presentation, I added, “I’d like everyone to please write down something and place it into the basket. If you don’t have a question, then write down the name of your favorite band.” That seemed to work better now that every student was expected to write something. There were several good questions submitted by the second class… and a few favorite bands.
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Dear Gabi, I Feel Guilty & Fantastic and Don’t Know Where I’m Heading Next

Dear Gabi,

I’ve just been reading your site for hours and I just wanted to drop a line to say how much of an inspiration you are. For the past few months I have been trying to figure myself out, one day I just felt a physical need to dress up, wasn’t something I was born with or anything it was a moment. I don’t know why, it just happened and kept developing. I’m married, have a kid and am tied with this double life. I purge and purge but as your site says, it’s a quick fix to feel what society classes as ‘normal’, the next day I had the yearn again.

I love having something private that I can keep to myself but feel the guilt too whilst also feeling fantastic and complete as everything about me is able to be expressed. I work in a very masculine environment with my family in-law expecting a very masculine role model for their daughter but as your site made me realize, too much of something has suppressed something else that needs its venting too!

Your site has given the many answers that many people have no doubt gone through, I don’t know where I’m heading with this next but I feel like this part of my life is a new body part you can’t live without. It’s nice to see someone like you who’s so free and liberated after going through all the same hardships as everyone else and still accepts they too are still learning about themselves. Well, here’s to happiness!


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Dear Gabi, My Crossdressing Boyfriend Just Came Out but Now He’s Nervous and Depressed

Dear Gabi,

My name’s Angel and I have a crossdressing boyfriend, “Sullie”. We’re still in highschool, and have been dating for two years, but I’ve only just found out that he’s a crossdresser because he has been afraid to tell me because of how I may have reacted. I fully accept him, and try to encourage him to be himself no matter what. I am 1 of 5 people who know, but none of his friends or family know.

I’m almost sadden by the fact that he had took so long, after I’ve been very vocal on my opinions about Gay, Bi, Lesbian and etc decisions in life. I myself am Bisexual, but Sullie’s the only person for me.

He’s become a shell of himself and is still nervous when he dresses around me. He feels he is a freak, and “not normal.” This is what saddens me the most. His acceptance in society won’t be felt for a while. Like said, I fully, 100% support him in any way possible. He is himself, and that’s what I fell in love with, nothing less.

Our first year together, he wasn’t the most faithful, but something held me to him. Something told me to stay. After he came out, things have been so much better. We are stronger, and I can honestly say, I have never ever felt closer to him.

Sully has always had a quality about him, a shy nature. But as he has progressed in his nature and sexuality, he’s become ashamed of himself – not at all times, but it’s definitely a mental state of depression that I hate to see him go through. He’s never been sure of himself, inside and out. Now that I know, it’s boosted him slightly, but not enough for him to come out as Sullie to other people.

I sometimes get frustrated because some of the comments his friends make without knowing honestly offend him, but he can’t say anything. He’s 16. Do you have any advice for us? And advice for confidence for him?


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Dear Gabi, Why Do Men Crossdress? Many girls are just curious.

Dear Gabi,

I am a straight SWF and actress. Can you explain why some dressers are straight, some are bi, and some are gay? Do they find dressing sexual at all? Do they have a special id with their mothers or sisters? Does each prefer specific items of clothing, or soft, silky fabric? Is the attraction to the clothing, or the idea of being a sexually appealing or soft female? Would they be more attracted to a more feminine or masculine looking and acting woman?

I have encountered many cross-dressers in Las Vegas, in and out of the entertainment industry. Most are very shy about revealing their preferences. Most surprising is that most focus on one specific garment ie shoes, lingerie, mini-skirts, that is associated with female sexuality. That is why I was trying to understand the psychology behind it.

Thanks for your response. Many girls are just curious.


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Dear Gabi, What Should I Expect From Therapy?

Dear Gabi,

I have just approached a therapist about some sessions as I feel my crossdressing is starting to effect my relationship. My girlfriend is understanding in a way but is still not overly keen.

It is just me who will be attending, as we both feel there are issues I need to address which could all be linked. Short temper for no apparent reason like I get really mad about the most silly things. My girlfriend thinks it’s always before I need to dress. She does not want to see me dressed though. I think I need to get a good understanding of why I need to dress other than “I love that dress!!”. I feel I’m rambling on a bit so apologies for that. I don’t wish for it to go any further than our home but I don’t want to always be alone when dressed but not sure she will ever want to get involved.

I just wondered what is the main objective of this type of therapy. I am nervous and not sure what to expect.

Best regards,

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