Glad to have you with us! I hope that being here will be a help as your journey continues.
So, a couple of things before I get to your question:
I encourage you to complete your Profile page as it helps others get a better understanding of how things sit for you.
You said Washington, so I assume you mean Washington State. I suggest that you do a bit of searching around and see what’s available in terms of support groups and social groups. Being connected with the community is always helpful for a number of reasons. Your friends may also have some insight as to what is happening in your area. You may search for members in your area by clicking on Social in the menu and then Member Directory.
In 2003 I was living in Corning, NY. My 1st wife and I were in the process of separating and we lived on different floors of the house. She was still living in the house as she was trying to figure out where to move. Anyway, knowing that the divorce was imminent, I became reacquainted with a woman that I had known previously, but we were never intimate. She lived in Ithaca, which was about 45 miles away. For Halloween, you could get into the theater on the Cornell campus for a showing of the Rocky Horror Picture Show for free if you crossdressed. Pat wanted to go, but I kept resisting. Eventually she wore me down and I agreed. I worked for Corning Inc. and I had some anxiety about being seen as a number of people who worked for the company lived there as it was less conservative and more cosmopolitan than Corning. But, the short story was that I felt comfortable in the clothes. It didn’t feel like I was doing this unnatural thing. For me, that was a revelation.
Less than 4 months later I began an overseas assignment in Taiwan and was there for 6 of the next 8 years. While I underdressed, I didn’t do anything untoward that would get me into trouble in a foreign country. I didn’t go out fully dressed again until 11 years later. These days I am dressed about 95% of the time and DeeAnn is the person of record for the 5 offices that I hold in local organizations. Very few have ever met Don.
In terms of outfit, I would suggest something “nice” and coordinated; nothing outlandish that would flag you as weird. Also, remember that attitude is very important. If we don’t project the attitude that we belong, someone will think that we don’t. Attitude also comes into play as our behavior should reflect a female persona in keeping with our presentation. Acting as a male while presenting as female will not go well.
I agree with what you said. We didn’t have the benefit of mothers, aunts, grandmothers and older sisters helping us to understand the ways of the world and how we fit into it. The only thing that we can do is our best to try to catch up. Not easy, but not insurmountable either.