How far we've come

General discussion of skirt and kilt-based fashion for men, and stuff that goes with skirts and kilts.
moonshadow
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How far we've come

Post by moonshadow »

This is an invitation to anyone who wishes to share some stories regarding their journey in busting established gender roles imposed by society, not the least of which, involves wearing skirts!

The other day, for the second time now, I found myself sitting on a lawn tractor, mowing my neighbors yard... just being friendly. His mower has been broken down for a while now, his latest push mower being reduced to three wheels. As made my rounds back and forth in his front yard, his children playing off in the distance, I am somewhat taken back by how far I've come with this skirt wearing thing in five short years.

Five years ago, for the first time, wearing a long grey Macabi skirt in the local K-Mart, feeling all eyes on me, noting every little snark and snicker. I still remember the practices I'd employ to soften the blow of a harsh world, practices such as when entering an establishment, focusing on something on the far wall in the direction you were going, and walking towards it in a effort so as to know make eye contact with anyone.

Fast forward five summers, a visit to the grocery store, walmart, even the local hardware store or autoparts store are carried out donning a skirt, and interacting with people as though I weren't wearing anything unusual at all.

2020... assisting my neighbor across the road in remodeling his bathroom, in a skirt.
That same neighbor, holding a ladder for him while he cleaned his gutters.. in a skirt.
That same neighbor, supper (hot dogs and watermelon) at his camper at the lake... in a skirt.
That same neighbor, Independence Day fireworks celebration with his wife, and two of their friends in the next town over.

A different neighbor, I allowed her and her kids to my wood pile, showing them how we carried wood "back in my day"... pay no mind to the earwigs. I chucked to myself as the five young boys freaked out about the bugs... finally delivering a wheel barrow load to their fire pit, where their father (a man who I judge to be quite "redneck" nodded a "pree-ciate it")... in a skirt.

And finally, last week, for the second time, a different different neighbor (we're up to three now)... mowing his grass... in a skirt.

I simply can not overstate how satisfying it is to FINALLY have reached a point where this skirt thing is simply no big deal.

For those new here, maybe about to venture out their first time... let me tell you, don't give up. Keep at it. Other members here will tell you, I do this quite freely in one of the most conservative regions of the U.S.... Appalachia (Virginia), just a stones throw from Tennessee, and less than an hour from Kentucky and West Virginia.

But I can't take all the credit... there are key factors that have paved the way, and frankly I doubt I would have had much success if not for these matters:

1) I've had a VERY supportive wife and daughter.
2) I've worked for two companies that didn't fire me over this, the first at least stayed of my way, the other has made no effort to stop me, and even has an active LGBTQ outreach.
3) I've always endeavored to be honest with myself and others, and maintain my identity as being no one other than "myself". (I.E. I don't argue with people about who I am... I know who I am, they don't... case closed)
4) Accept the fact that there will be people who will look down upon you for this.
5) Accept the fact that those people are a cancer, a pox on humanity. Don't gauge your self worth against them, and understand the fact is, the world is better without them... and is better with you.
Grok
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Choosing Your Battles Carefully

Post by Grok »

If I recall correctly, Moon Shadow, you were careful to conform outwardly when on the job. Your skirting did not impinge on the actual work place, so your employers could afford to be tolerant.

I don't know your neighbors, so I can only speculate. Perhaps they finally got used to you, and now view you as a harmless eccentric?
moonshadow
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Re: How far we've come

Post by moonshadow »

Grok wrote:
Wed Aug 05, 2020 2:07 am
I don't know your neighbors, so I can only speculate. Perhaps they finally got used to you, and now view you as a harmless eccentric?
I think it would be more accurate to say, I got used to myself.

Once you are comfortable in your own skin, people do seem to come around in their own way.
Faldaguy
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Faldaguy »

by moonshadow » Tue Aug 04, 2020 8:17 pm

Grok wrote: ↑Tue Aug 04, 2020 8:07 pm
I don't know your neighbors, so I can only speculate. Perhaps they finally got used to you, and now view you as a harmless eccentric?
Moonshadow:
I think it would be more accurate to say, I got used to myself.

Once you are comfortable in your own skin, people do seem to come around in their own way.
Moon, them is insightful words that carry much more insight and wisdom than than may meet the eye -- listen up skeptics and doubters. In short, "OWN IT" -- both yourself and your skirts.
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Pdxfashionpioneer
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Pdxfashionpioneer »

Well said Moonshadow! Couldn't agree with you more, especially that last post

As to what Faldaguy said, count me as a "Ditto!"
David, the PDX Fashion Pioneer

Social norms aren't changed by Congress or Parliament; they're changed by a sufficient number of people ignoring the existing ones and publicly practicing new ones.
Freefrom
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Freefrom »

You have been an inspiration for me moonshadow and thank you for your input.
When I first walked off the street into this Cafe I believed that I was the only man in the world who was comfortable wearing a skirt, how wrong was I! Today I'm confident and happy to wear whatever feels good.
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Fred in Skirts
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Fred in Skirts »

The words "own it" and "be yourself" have strong meanings. But the strongest is "be honest with yourself and others". If you are honest with your self and with those around you it makes life a whole lot easier. I am a man who enjoys wearing his skirts and dresses as a man. I do not try to look or pass as a woman. So when I go out in a skirt or dress people know I am a man. As for the haters that is not my problem it is theirs. I do not worry what others think or say about me. I am ME and damn proud of it. :D
Fred :kiltdance:

"The universal aptitude for ineptitude makes any human accomplishment an incredible miracle."


"It is better to be hated for what you are than be loved for what you are not" Andre Gide: 1869 - 1951
Grok
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Grok »

Freefrom wrote:
Wed Aug 05, 2020 1:44 pm
When I first walked off the street into this Cafe I believed that I was the only man in the world who was comfortable wearing a skirt, how wrong was I!
When I was growing up males weren't supposed to be interested in skirts. So I kept quiet. Which brings up a question-how many other boys were interested in skirts, but remained silent?

A lack of expressed interest...so apparently boys had no interest in skirts.
Dust
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Dust »

I've slowly come far as well. I think a large part of it is getting comfortable with it myself, but time will tell.

I remember when a trip to the store in a Utilikilt was nerve wracking, now I go in an athletic mini-skirt on my way home after a run without much thought.

There neighbors really don't care, maybe in part because they've gotten to know me well. I don't know. Someday we'll end up moving, when we do, I'll see if the new neighbors come around quickly or if it takes a while and getting to know them.
Dust
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Dust »

Grok wrote:
Wed Aug 05, 2020 8:51 pm
Freefrom wrote:
Wed Aug 05, 2020 1:44 pm
When I first walked off the street into this Cafe I believed that I was the only man in the world who was comfortable wearing a skirt, how wrong was I!
When I was growing up males weren't supposed to be interested in skirts. So I kept quiet. Which brings up a question-how many other boys were interested in skirts, but remained silent?

A lack of expressed interest...so apparently boys had no interest in skirts.
Guys are very susceptible to shaming, so I'm not surprised that simply the thought of getting called a sissy once meant that curiosity about skirts would get repressed. With it then unheard of, the potential shame was greater, creating a vicious cycle.

Somehow that cycle is starting to break down. The internet has helped like minded folks find each other, and get support. I'm sure there's more to it than that, however.
Grok
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Grok »

The Internet can be helpful for small businesses, for niche businesses.
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JeffB1959
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Re: How far we've come

Post by JeffB1959 »

The important thing is to be comfortable in your own skin when it comes to wearing clothing that isn't classified as "male". I remember being nervous about wearing skirts in public, worried about how I would be received by the world at large, worried that I'd be made fun of, laughed at, perhaps worse. When none of that happened, I was able to relax and enjoy the clothing I love, and do so just about anywhere.
I don't want to LOOK like a woman, I just want to DRESS like a woman.
KiltedintheValley
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Re: How far we've come

Post by KiltedintheValley »

Moon, I live a bit north of you in the Shenandoah Valley. Here too, it is very conservative. Although, with several universities and colleges in the area, it is becoming less conservative over time. I was shamed early on when I first wore my kilt out in public. Ironically enough, it was the church my family was a part of that shamed me! (We no longer attend that church.) Outside of my work uniforms, I own more skirts than pants. I mow in a skirt as well (unless I am on the riding mower :shock: ). We recently moved into this neighborhood and my neighbors don't seem to care what I wear as long as I have clothes on.

My daughters have helped me the greatest in this journey. Both are teenagers. Both encourage me to just be me! My wife is coming around. She recently gave me one of her old denim skirts she couldn't wear any more! My son (he's 9) just accepts that his dad wears skirts. For my extended family, well...that is a long story for another time.

Moon, I thank you. You are an encouragement to me. I know the area where you live. My grandmother and her 10 other siblings grew up outside Cleveland, VA. I am convinced if a man can wear a skirt in Russell County VA, he can wear one anywhere!
"Never take counsel of your fears." - Stonewall Jackson
"It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not." - Andre Gide
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denimini
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Re: How far we've come

Post by denimini »

I agree with many here that self confidence is the key. I suspect that people think that if someone is so confident then it must be ok.
I cringe now thinking back to how ngurrugaa I was when I first started wearing skirts.
Anthony, a denim miniskirt wearer in Outback Australia
Faldaguy
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Re: How far we've come

Post by Faldaguy »

Anthony said: I cringe now thinking back to how ngurrugaa I was when I first started wearing skirts.
OK, you did this on purpose I'm sure: What the h... does "ngurrugaa" mean? I know you are a bit of shag on a rock out there but this sounds like your full as a boot! :D
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