A big topic here, we all have heard about feeling like a gender that isn’t our own. But what does that really mean? This may be even more of a confusing thing to place our finger on when you are not strictly in the traditional man or woman gender roles, being male or female isn’t really at play here. Crossdressers for example are typically quite content with being men but also like to wear women’s clothing, to emulate women, or even to be women some of the time, or vice versa if you are a woman who crossdresses. So I have finally found the easiest way I can think of to explain this feeling of gender.
The Formal Event Attire
Ok so you are going to a fancy event and you have to get dressed up for the event. So you put on a suit and look pretty darn spiffy. So now you have the suit on but are you actually wearing it? Wearing an article of clothing like a suit or little black dress isn’t just putting it on but owning it, being at complete ease in it like it’s the most natural thing in the world for you. I know that for me putting on my 3 piece Calvin Kline pin stripe suit with my awesome white French cuff shirt and topping it off with cuff links and a pocket watch is like a suit of social armour. I own it and am just as at ease at a formal event or in a fast food joint. I look awesome and I know it, I am at the apex of man at that moment. Now this outfit is a uniform of gender, I mean really there is nothing more manly than what I just described. It denotes embracing your masculinity and putting it on display for the world to take notice. By owning that outfit you are owning your gender. Now change it up, replace suit with that perfect little black dress. You know the one that accentuates every curve, with a garter belt, lace under things, the perfect clutch, some kicking heels, and the jewellery that makes it all pop. That would be feminine social armour. A woman who puts that on and wears it, I mean really owns it looks good and just knows it is the equivalent to the suit. Both outfits need to learned how to worn in order to be worn. What buttons are done up on a suit or how to walk in heels. These are skills we garner through experiencing and performing gender our whole lives, and lets be clear gender is defiantly a large portion performance.
So what does this have to do with gender and that feeling of it? Well take a man and a woman in those outfits and switch outfits not as a costume or a gag but seriously flip them and you send them to the same event. Neither will feel at ease or be able to really seriously own it typically. The woman will be doing up her bottom bottom button and the man will break his ankle in heels. And take them from the formal event and drop them in a fried chicken place and they will both be totally out of their element. Their social armour is gone and they might as well be naked. They are not owning their gender and feel ill at ease performing the other.
For a crossdressing man what may make his suit more comfortable is the lacy underthings from the woman’s glorious outfit. Having black lace bra and panties may make him more at ease. He is more comfortable with a little bit of feminine mixed in with the masculine. A woman who is transgendered may put the suit on instead of the dress and feel totally at ease then, she gains the feeling of ease that a man has in the suit, the woman hasn’t transitioned at all but is more at ease being a female man at the event than a female woman. Then you get the others, like me the bigender along with the non-binary or fluid people. I am at ease in the suit or the little black dress. For me while it love putting on a suit I am totally fine with the dress and some days may even choose it instead.
That is the best way I can think of to explain the feeling of gender to someone who just can’t understand. Gender isn’t about what’s between your legs it’s about the role you play in the great play of life. It isn’t 100% accurate but it’s as close as I can come.
Thoughts on my little thought experiment?