The Things that Help Make Us Feel “Real”

  • Creator
  • #90371
    Shawna Layne

    I was giggling this morning in an email to my girlfriend about how for the first time in my life, I’d opened a credit card account at a well known woman’s store, where I’ve shopped for some time. Up to now (and for many years), I’ve always used a major CC without thinking about it, but for some reason this past week, I WANTED (for lack of a better term) my own “real woman” account with this store. Afterwards, I found that it actually felt like somewhat of an accomplishment and affirmation of who I am (my actual thought at the time was that it made me feel “REAL”)!

    Has any simple (“normal and everyday”) activity or function, which you’ve never given a previous thought, suddenly and emphatically affirmed who you are…a real woman?

    I hope I’m making sense…lol!

    Love, Shawna

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  • Author
    • #117887

      Hi, everyone. As far as makeup goes, I’m just starting out. I wear lipstick, not as much for how it looks – I do love the way it looks – but more for how it feels. I feel it on my lips all day and it makes me feel good. I was wondering if anyone could give me some makeup tips?

      • #117895
        DeeAnn Hopings


        2 suggestions:

        • Create a specific thread to pose your question
        • We don’t have a dedicated Fashion and Makeup section here on TGH, so responses may be a bit hit and miss. However, our sister site, Crossdresser Heaven does have a dedicated section. That would be a good starting point…
        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #117881

      Let’s see…wearing sandals in public with pink toe nails, clothes shopping with my best (girl) friend, taking 3x longer to get ready in the morning…oh, and an interesting one…passing people on the interstate makes me feel like I’m a strong independent woman. Flowers and pink and nail polish and headbands, yes please. Now don’t tell me what I can’t do or assume that because I’m a girl (anything)…aw, how cute is that baby 🙂

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #91637
      Josie Angel

      My friend called me “girlie” (as in “Whatcha doing, girlie?”) in a text and it made me smile.

      Finding the perfect pink nightgown made me really happy.

      Careying my pink Hello Kitty purse makes me happy.  (And often wins me compliments.  It’s such a great flirting prop!)

      I used to love wearing my Tinkerbell t-shirts to Pride festivals.  I used to go to 3 or 4 every June.  It was so special and important because at that time, it was the only place I could dress feminine in public and feel accepted and safe.  I still have a box of Tink tee’s that I’m waiting to shrink into.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #91273

      Hi , i would say being called by my fem name , i have ordered from places as Leslie and the package comes with my fem name and when they contact me for an update i ‘m addressed as her . I love that . Its so me , thanks for reminding me Shawna . Leslie

      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #90936
      DeeAnn Hopings

      A few years back I added an American Express card with DeeAnn’s name on it. I didn’t view that as any particular milestone. It was basically to prevent double takes when paying for something. Other than car repairs, that card accounts for maybe 80% of my purchases.

      I present as DeeAnn nearly all of the time these days. Therefore, that is that name that I have used for all of my personal involvements, such as:

      • Community Liaison Officer, Great Auto of Yesteryear
      • Steering Committee member, Desert Stonewall Democrats
      • Society of Automotive Historians, member
      • Commissioner, Cathedral City Public Arts Commission
      • Volunteer Coordinator, Greater Palm Springs Pride

      With the exception of the Desert Stonewall Democrats, and possibly the Society of Automotive Historians, I am the only trans person and quite possibly the first. Presenting as I feel I should and having people affirm that is a good feeling…

    • #90514

      Oh, I forgot my favorite lately: video workouts for women. Since the season has been changing and I can’t do the usual biking and hiking and paddling and things I do for exercise in the summer, and since the pandemic prevents me from doing all the dancing I was otherwise doing, I started doing 20-minute women’s HIIT video workouts on YouTube (though there might be other sites or channels or apps or DVDs that I’ll like even better–I’d love suggestions!). I find that all of the affirmation of being appropriately dressed and working out with an onscreen coach who looks into the camera and sees just another sister trying to get or keep fit is a huge motivation to get exercise for me.

      I also wanted to get some more workout clothing, and I decided that I’d give myself the green light to order a things after certain numbers of workouts–and then wearing those clothes to work out has been additionally motivating. 🙂 And considering that I’m one of those girls with not much on top, at least for now, I figured out what I needed to do with sports bras for working out and sleeping that made things look more like inner me.

      6 users thanked author for this post.
      • #91258

        I love the idea of getting things as a reward!!! I may have to try that for more incentive.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #91638
          Josie Angel

          I like that idea too.  Might be a good way to help me reach my makeup and dressing goals.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #90512

      I think this is a great topic, Shawna. 🙂

      Some affirming things that have meant a lot to me:

      • Running errands in female mode
      • Having friends I met in female mode and who know me primarily as a woman (even though they’re aware I’m trans/bi-gender)
      • This is a little silly, but I have a different cell phone case I use in female mode. It’s definitely more femme than my usual androgynous one, and it has a cover, which keeps my phone from getting scratched in my purse. (I also love carrying my purse.)
      • Legal name change! Especially realizing that no, nobody will stop me from changing my name to whatever I want!
      • Getting my gender updated on my driver’s license!
      • Of course, wearing clothes that fit my sense of female style
      • Attending trans-centric events (the main one I’ve gone to that I’ve enjoyed is First Event in Boston every Feb/Mar)
      • Shopping
      • Dating as a woman (easier said than done, and it would probably be a bad idea for me to put too much importance on whether someone would be willing to date me in female mode, but still was really positive for me before I got into a new, long-term relationship–with someone who is supportive of my gender identity, I hasten to add!)
      • Swing dancing follow en femme, especially since I love swing era style!

      One thing that I feel would be very affirming to me is being invited to a non-trans-centric, women-only event or space. This has happened to me only once so far, and then I was deeply disappointed when the event had to be cancelled due to weather. If anyone has suggestions on how to encourage invitations to that kind of situation without pushing myself on a bunch of cis women who may or may not want me there, I’m all ears! The one thing I can think of that I’d like to do once the pandemic is over is see about attending women-only events through my local Pride center, where I know they’re supportive of trans women.


      3 users thanked author for this post.
    • #90394

      I love it, im so glad you had this experience ^^ i am really just starting out, but i think right now, i get the most joy out of my bi-monthly stutch fix box ^^; when i put the clothes on and they fit and dare i say even “look good!” I am so happy. As my closet grows and i can mix and match different outfits, i feel more and more affirmed ^^:

      2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #90392

      I think that dressing up to look nice and really feminine and then going to a cosmetics store so they could offer suggestions on possible makeup changes such as color was a definite highlight. Since I passed doing that I think I could do anything.

      4 users thanked author for this post.
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