I wanted to highlight a post written by one of my blogging friends. It’s called – “Underlying Feelings – Wants & Needs.” It’s an incredibly insightful post about crossdressing. In my journey to find healing from my crossdressing past, I think back to this post often.
In the first half of the post he talks about how it’s easy to assume our crossdressing is mostly sexual, but that there is a whole host of other reasons why we do it. In starting to talk about this he delves into describing his marriage.
The second half of the post is what I find most helpful. Basically he talks about the underlying reasons, the hidden motivations that brought about crossdressing in his life in the first place. He talks about the healthy human needs and desires and emotions he was trying to meet (subconsciously) through crossdressing rather than in other normal healthy areas of life. Some of the things he talks about are human needs or wants. Some of the things are aspects of his personality that he had trouble integrating into his masculine self, and so they came out through his crossdressing self instead. The 4 paragraphs near the end about his feelings while crossdressing and feelings while not crossdressing fit me almost exactly.
This post and topic not only is of great interest to me, but I think it is extremely important for us to think through. Not only does thinking through this post and our own life and story help us to understand ourselves and our crossdressing struggle better. But it also is helpful for our healing. If we want to continue to resist crossdressing, we have to figure out what crossdressing was doing for us, what needs we were trying to meet through it, and then get those needs met in other healthy ways.
So for example, if I, like the author, am able to feel uninhibited, joyful, carefree, attractive, beautiful, and fun while crossdressing, why cannot I not feel that way as a man? Certainly some part of my upbringing or my own social understanding of the world stifled me. I learned to not feel certain things as a man, or learned that I shouldn’t or couldn’t feel certain things as a man. I need to think through these different feelings and traits and learn how to integrate them into my one self, my one real identity as a man. The alternative of course is crossdressing in which a man leads a sort of double life, with his feminine crossdressed self acting in a different way from his non-crossdressed self. I want to be a whole free human being. One that can be strong and passionate, attractive and adventurous, courageous and compassionate, all while being the same person. I do not want to be the stifled boring uninteresting but stable man, who then spends his weekends in a closet (or out on the town) crossdressed and being adventurous, beautiful, carefree, etc. I want to be a whole healthy human being. I do not want to be a divided person. I do not want to look for important human needs of mine to be met through crossdressing, but I want to get them met through healthy relationships with God and others, productive work, and wholesome hobbies.
His “next steps” at the end are very helpful, and they are things I’m continuing to work on. Even though it no longer takes work to resist crossdressing from day to day, I still need to be putting effort into sorting myself out, meeting my felt needs, and being a whole person. For long term healing and recovery from crossdressing, and for continuing to decrease my desires to crossdress, this is extremely important. You should definitely read his post.