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Author Topic: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?  (Read 32289 times)

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Offline Emerald

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Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« on: August 27, 2006, 01:45:27 am »

What is a Crossdresser?

A Crossdresser is an individual who dresses in clothing characteristic of the other sex.

The term Crossdresser does not refer to a gender identity.  Crossdressers do not see themselves as being a full time member of the other gender or other sex.  However, Crossdressers find fulfillment in the activity and often feel it is a necessary expression of themselves to become a temporary member of the other sex.

The term crossdressing describes the behavior without attributing any motives for the behavior.  In reference to a person, the term Crossdresser suggests the crossdressing behavior is compelling or habitual.

Most Crossdressers experience their first urge to wear the clothing of the other sex at an early age, puberty is typical.  Crossdressers enjoy the expression of the alternate sex or gender for a vast variety of reasons, and most often only as an occasional activity.  Their motivations for crossdressing may change over time.  Frequently, crossdressing becomes an antidote to anxiety or depression and contributes to a sense of inner peace and calm.

Crossdressers may be male or female, many having normal marriages, family lives, and careers.  They may 'purge' on occasion, disposing of their feminine attire (or, in the case of female Crossdressers, masculine attire) in the hope that their desire to crossdress will also disappear.  Crossdressers may encounter difficulties with unsupportive partners or spouses, and may be subjected to employment discrimination even if the crossdressing activity occurs solely outside the workplace.

Crossdressers cultivate the appearance of the other sex, particularly with regard to clothing.  Crossdressing behaviour may also include the use of makeup and adoption of postures, gestures and mannerisms typical of the other sex.  For most Crossdressers, crossdressing is a private form of self-expression.  Crossdressing may also be undertaken on a part-time or recreational basis, such as at clubs and social events, and may or may not have erotic significance.

Transvestite, the archaic term for Crossdresser, has largely fallen into disuse except in a few specific instances.  Current usage of transvestite refers to an individual who wears the clothing of the other sex as a fetishistic practice for sexual arousal.  The clinical term, transvestic fetishism refers to a psychiatric diagnosis.
Two key criteria are required for a diagnosis of transvestic fetishism:
   1. Recurrent, intense sexually arousing fantasies, urges, or behaviour, involving crossdressing.
   2. This causes clinically significant distress or impairment, whether socially, at work, or elsewhere.
Thus, transvestic fetishism is not considered to be a mental disorder unless it causes significant problems for the individual concerned.

Crossdressing is also a common behaviour among transsexual individuals to relieve their crossgender feelings.  Transsexuals dress in the attire of their core-gender as a form of gender identity self-expression.  In doing so, the motivations of a Transsexual differ markedly from the motivations of Crossdressers.

The root cause of crossdressing behaviour is unknown.  Crossdressing is not considered to be a mental disorder.  The only 'treatment' for a Crossdresser is to encourage the individual to accept their situation and lifelong need to crossdress.

It is estimated that Crossdressers comprise 5% of the adult male population.  Female Crossdressers are thought to be more rare than male, but this may be erroneous.  Since crossdressing behaviour in females is not prohibited in modern Western societies, little censure is given to women who dress in clothing characteristic of the male sex.  Females who are observed wearing mens clothing are often considered to be individualistic and stylishly attired.

-Emerald  :icon_mrgreen:
« Last Edit: December 16, 2006, 10:01:23 pm by Emerald »
I am an Androgyne.
I am not Trans-masculine, I am not Trans-feminine.
I am not Bigender, Neutrois or Genderqueer.
I am neither Cisgender nor Transgender.
I am of the 'gender' which existed before the creation of the binary genders.

amberwish

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2006, 03:59:26 am »
only 5 percent?  how many have done it and wont or cant say that they have.  thats 5 percent i dont mind belonging to.   :) 

Buffy

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #2 on: August 27, 2006, 05:01:47 am »
Hi Emerald,

There is also a stigma associated with cross dressing, that cannot be ignored.

Men dressing in Female clothing is sociably more unacceptable than Women dressing in mens clothing?

Girls for instance growing up are considered "tom boys" if they have short hair, wear trousers and dress "boyishly"... But boys are not afforded this luxury, even my nurses outfit was banned!

I also think that it is still considered by many to be "perverted" that men should dress in womens clothes and is still associated in many cases with sexual acts such as masturbation. I am not really sure what sexual thrill women would get out of cross dressing?

Becky


Bdnewgirl

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2006, 03:21:42 pm »
Darn I'm up in the five Percent. I will have to try something else to be differant  ;D
Interesting Emerald

Love and Hugs
Brandi

Kate

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2006, 07:32:04 pm »
A Crossdresser is an individual who dresses in clothing characteristic of their opposite sex.

The catch - as with the "What is a transsexual?" thread - is do we group people by what they do? Or by their motivations?

Under this definition, many of whom we typically consider "transsexuals" would also be crossdressers (at least before they transition). And while I suppose it's accurate to say that they are crossdressing (wearing clothing opposite of physical anatomy), it's sounds wrong to label them as crossdressers.

sheila18

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2006, 03:11:35 am »
emerald:
 yes evrytime i dress up at work for 1st time, next week the women up the ante. The complements are great!

KAte:
  yes, we discussed this awhile back about boxing and labeling .. i can see it could create a stratafied class system where those with full SRS are at the top and crossdressers at bottom ...i said could.
sheila18

nikki

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2006, 04:56:49 am »
                Wow!! this sounds just like me, when I was little I would wear my Mom's pantyhose sometimes and liked it,but always kept to myself.As I got older I still wanted to.So I would get a few things here and there,But then I thought there was something wrong with me, so I would throw all my stuff away.But I Would come back to it, because I enjoy and feel good when I crossdress.And now I finally figured out that there's nothing wrong with me, I like to dress as a woman and it makes me happy.I don't do it all the time,but I do like to dress up alot.Then I got tired of keeping this secret to myself and being sad because I'm not being me.And now I have finally told my wife how I really feel  and were kinda haveing issues about it now.She said at first she was gonna support me no matter what,but she's not supporting me a whole lot right now. :'(

Offline Jillieann Rose

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2006, 07:32:45 am »
Oh Nikki I'm so sorry for you. I does hurt but give her time.
 :'( :'(
Jillieann/JR

Offline Julie Marie

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2006, 10:47:58 am »
It is estimated that Crossdressers comprise 5% of the adult male population.

-Emerald  :icon_mrgreen:

Interesting the definition refers only to MTF.  Some time ago a TG therapist, who is well studied in things TG, told me that MTF and FTM TGs are pretty even in numbers.  The reason FTMs aren't as noticed is it's socially acceptable for women to wear men's clothing.  So you don't know if a natal female is wearing male clothing because it's considered normal attire or to present onesself as male.

Julie
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Offline Lyric

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #9 on: December 16, 2006, 03:25:21 pm »
Good idea for a discussion, but I think some important distinctions need to be made. I once started a running list and noted every reason a person might "crossdress". I based it on news stories, TV shows, movies, as well as my own imagination. After the list past 200, it became clear that "crossdressing" is not a term that describes a lifestyle, but simply an action-- done for scores of different reasons. People have crossdressed to join armies, to avoid the draft, as a prank, for Halloween-- as well as because they feel they were born in the wrong body, or they do not identify with the typical male persona, etc.

While I a am bigendered male, myself. "Crossdressing" is something I do.
"Dress your personality not your age." - Ginger Burr, stylist

Offline Emerald

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2006, 10:29:25 pm »

What a coincidence!
The updated and expand revision to "What is a Crossdresser?" is very nearly finished. I've been working on the project for some time now. I hope it meets your high expectations Lyric, and that it fully addresses the comments and concerns of the previous posters on this thread.

Stay tuned!
-Emerald  :icon_mrgreen:


Posted on: December 16, 2006, 07:16:21 PM

Tada! :icon_mrhappy:

-Emerald  :icon_mrgreen:
I am an Androgyne.
I am not Trans-masculine, I am not Trans-feminine.
I am not Bigender, Neutrois or Genderqueer.
I am neither Cisgender nor Transgender.
I am of the 'gender' which existed before the creation of the binary genders.

Ricki

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2006, 12:01:33 am »
Nikki,
hang in there  
Quote
She said at first she was gonna support me no matter what,but she's not supporting me a whole lot right now. Cry

we've almost all had friends or loved ones or family members that said these promise to us and betrayed us!  I love my sister but she hurt me worse than anyone with her shallow promises for the future....The perso at one time i was counting on the most..
Had to lok elsewhere for support!
Never married or had kids thank God so i do not have that haven to worry after
Good luck and let us know how things are going'
Ricki

RachelRay

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2007, 07:21:46 pm »
                Wow!! this sounds just like me, when I was little I would wear my Mom's pantyhose sometimes and liked it,but always kept to myself.As I got older I still wanted to.So I would get a few things here and there,But then I thought there was something wrong with me, so I would throw all my stuff away.But I Would come back to it, because I enjoy and feel good when I crossdress.And now I finally figured out that there's nothing wrong with me, I like to dress as a woman and it makes me happy.I don't do it all the time,but I do like to dress up alot.Then I got tired of keeping this secret to myself and being sad because I'm not being me.And now I have finally told my wife how I really feel  and were kinda haveing issues about it now.She said at first she was gonna support me no matter what,but she's not supporting me a whole lot right now. :'(
Hi Nikki....  Thats exactly how my girlfriend is now...   something has changed her feelings about my dressing...  she was ok with it for a while.. but now she would rather I didn't dress around her anymore....? 

kimdp999

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2007, 10:31:48 pm »
I'd really like to caution anyone dating, who may eventually marry a girlfriend who appears to be "supportive".  The sweet innocent, supportive, (sometimes encouraging me to xdress) girl I married, broke my heart, and threatened to blackmail and ruin my career in order to get her way during the divorce 4 1/2 yrs later.  She turned out to be the most evil, vindictive, heartless person I've ever known.  Her rationale for the divorce was, "you never heard me", and "I'm not attracted to you anymore" (because I xdress, and I didn't even do it in her presence after she decided it bothered her).  The worst thing I did to her in our marriage was tell her that her career choice would not support the lifestyle she wanted us to live, and our income would not be sufficient (I made $80K and she made $20K).  The reality is she wanted greener pastures and other men.  Thank god we didn't have kids......

Kim

Ricki

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #14 on: January 12, 2007, 07:48:23 pm »
Wow kimd.. what a horror story weep weep 4-you!
I'm glad you did not have childen either that could of been really ugly!
I do not know but i agree those promises seem to change as the times change and they are meaningless.. Like i said in one post i would rather have someone say i cannot promise anything but I'll try.. I would be more at ease with a disappointment then...

Melinda

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2007, 11:44:42 pm »
A Crossdresser is an individual who dresses in clothing characteristic of their opposite sex.

The catch - as with the "What is a transsexual?" thread - is do we group people by what they do? Or by their motivations?

Under this definition, many of whom we typically consider "transsexuals" would also be crossdressers (at least before they transition). And while I suppose it's accurate to say that they are crossdressing (wearing clothing opposite of physical anatomy), it's sounds wrong to label them as crossdressers.
In reality I would rather be labeled as a Transsexual, than a Crossdresser-As a male it often times is stereotyped as being a gay man  ::)  even though most are not (does it really matter, prolly not). Thats just me though.....I wear girls clothes almost full time and things S. the border are kinda small maybe that falls into the transsexual catagoery.   But I was always taught that women are supposed to wear womens clothing, lke skirts long and short, dresses, gowns and you get the idea and men wear mens stuff, pants and the such, theres not too much complication being man.   The only thing that I can think of that is remotely close to a Misses mini skirt is a Scottish Kilt worn by men with funny socks  ;D .   

But then again "women dressing" in "mens clothing"-its a form of crossdressing isnt it ???

Offline gennee

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #16 on: January 30, 2007, 08:34:41 am »
I refer to myself as a transvestite. It feels right for me personally. I know about all the negative connotations associated with it but it doesn't matter what others think about me. Dressing is definitely not a fetish as I wear some piece of women's clothing all the time.

I'm wearing panties (which I do always) and a bra at the present time. I dress up 1-3 times a week. Dressing is a part of my life and who I am. I came out to my spouse last year. At first she was shocked and dismayed. Now we share tops, skirts, blouses, and dresses. She doesn't totally approve, but she doesn't stop me from dressing. At home, I wear a blouse or cami.

I started dressing only two years ago at age 56. I guess this was always inside of me and it was time for it to blossom. I never struggled with gender issues nor had the desire to wear women's clothing as a youth. I'm still evolving as a transgender and a transvestite. I can visualize myself as a full time transvestite in the future.

Gennee
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BeverlyAnn

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2007, 03:08:12 pm »
Wow Emerald, why couldn't you ask something easy like the meaning of life?   :D  OK, here goes.  A crossdresser is a transgendered person who can be happy with occasionally satisfying the need to live as a member of the opposite sex for varying periods of time.  I do tend to agree with Lyric that it is an action, it does not describe the person.  Through association with Southern Comfort Conference and running the Big Brother/Big Sister program for conference newcomers for a number of years, I've met TG people from all over the world and the stories are as varied as the people.  Married, single, living together, straight, bi or gay, supportive spouses, ambivalent spouses and spouses that find their cross gender behavior totally unacceptable, they all share one thing in common.  A duality in their person.  Some can be happy with only living that need once a year at a conference, some on a monthly basis, some weekly and some as often as possible.

Perhaps a better question is what causes the crossdressing action.  Most of us know that a fetus, whether XX or XY starts out in the womb female.  At a certain point, the XY chromosome causes a hormone wash that masculinizes the fetus.  If the hormone wash occurs at the correct time, the person will be single gendered male.  Mind and body agree.  But if the hormone wash occurs late, the brain continues developing as a female brain until the wash does occur.  Let the wash occur a little late and you have a bigendered person who has both a masculine and feminine nature, i.e. a transgendered person who crossdresses.  If the wash occurs even later, you have a person with a masculine body at war with a feminine brain, i.e. a transgendered person who has no choice but to transition so that mind and body match.  I wish could cite the source on this but I know it was based on Dutch research that shows that certain parts of transsexual brains match those of genetic females.

Now for those who said their wives or girlfriends were at first supportive but have backed off some, as a suggestion, check your own behavior.  Sometimes with coming out to someone and not having to keep your secret inside, their is a sense of euphoria that can cause you to behave a little differently.  A friend once described this, for lack of a better term, as "The Attack of the 16 Year Old Girl."   Her statement was that you begin behaving like a teenage girl and that your significant other does not know how to handle it.  She would expect this behavior from a teenage daughter, she does not expect it from you.  I know as after my first conference I suffered this attack myself.  Having gone from NEVER appearing in public on Wednesday to walking into the Hard Rock Cafe on Thursday night, it was almost like a drug.  After a period of about 3 months, my wife was about ready to kill me or divorce me depending on whether she could reach a weapon or a lawyer first.   ;)  If you find that your behavior has changed to something like this, back off a little and give them time to adjust.

Bev

Offline gennee

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #18 on: February 14, 2007, 10:12:59 am »
Wow Emerald, why couldn't you ask something easy like the meaning of life?   :D  OK, here goes.  A crossdresser is a transgendered person who can be happy with occasionally satisfying the need to live as a member of the opposite sex for varying periods of time.  I do tend to agree with Lyric that it is an action, it does not describe the person.  Through association with Southern Comfort Conference and running the Big Brother/Big Sister program for conference newcomers for a number of years, I've met TG people from all over the world and the stories are as varied as the people.  Married, single, living together, straight, bi or gay, supportive spouses, ambivalent spouses and spouses that find their cross gender behavior totally unacceptable, they all share one thing in common.  A duality in their person.  Some can be happy with only living that need once a year at a conference, some on a monthly basis, some weekly and some as often as possible.

Perhaps a better question is what causes the crossdressing action.  Most of us know that a fetus, whether XX or XY starts out in the womb female.  At a certain point, the XY chromosome causes a hormone wash that masculinizes the fetus.  If the hormone wash occurs at the correct time, the person will be single gendered male.  Mind and body agree.  But if the hormone wash occurs late, the brain continues developing as a female brain until the wash does occur.  Let the wash occur a little late and you have a bigendered person who has both a masculine and feminine nature, i.e. a transgendered person who crossdresses.  If the wash occurs even later, you have a person with a masculine body at war with a feminine brain, i.e. a transgendered person who has no choice but to transition so that mind and body match.  I wish could cite the source on this but I know it was based on Dutch research that shows that certain parts of transsexual brains match those of genetic females.

Now for those who said their wives or girlfriends were at first supportive but have backed off some, as a suggestion, check your own behavior.  Sometimes with coming out to someone and not having to keep your secret inside, their is a sense of euphoria that can cause you to behave a little differently.  A friend once described this, for lack of a better term, as "The Attack of the 16 Year Old Girl."   Her statement was that you begin behaving like a teenage girl and that your significant other does not know how to handle it.  She would expect this behavior from a teenage daughter, she does not expect it from you.  I know as after my first conference I suffered this attack myself.  Having gone from NEVER appearing in public on Wednesday to walking into the Hard Rock Cafe on Thursday night, it was almost like a drug.  After a period of about 3 months, my wife was about ready to kill me or divorce me depending on whether she could reach a weapon or a lawyer first.   ;)  If you find that your behavior has changed to something like this, back off a little and give them time to adjust.

Bev

I behaved like a teenager when I started dressing. I had kind of a sexy and slutty look. I mellowed out a lot after a few months. Now, I have a whole different attitude, a mature one.

Gennee
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SOofaCD

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Re: Question and Answer - What is a Crossdresser?
« Reply #19 on: February 16, 2007, 03:11:29 pm »
I hope it's ok to post in this thread.  If not, then I appologize in advance.  When I saw the topic of this thread I had to read it.  I am a significant other and I am newly informed of my honey's needs/deisres.  I feel horrible for those of you with bad experiences with spouses/significant others.  Please, I ask that you keep something in mind.  You are very good at hiding what you feel in this area.  That is a sad necesity, and 9 times out of 10 we SOs really have no clue.  There is a huge range of emotions we feel when we first hear the news.  I, presonally, am still experiencing some of those.  As for the FTM dressing, I would suppose in the broadest sense that would be me, as well.  I despise pantyhose.  I think they're evil and only good for catching dryer lint.  I also prefer pants/jeans to skirts/dresses most of the time, though they are feminine looking in cut.  Labels are for medicine bottles.  People should be allowed to just be people.

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