Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Discussion of fashion elements and looks that are traditionally considered somewhat "femme" but are presented in a masculine context. This is NOT about transvestism or crossdressing.
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Andy_G
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Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by Andy_G »

I’ve finally realised that rather than simply wanting to wear a skirt, I’m genderfluid when it comes to clothing. It’s taken a long time to understand this and it’s now reaching the point that I need to be open rather than my wife find out accidentally. I’ve been a little careless on occasion and left labels lying out and the last thing I want is to seem deceitful or raise suspicion.

I tested the water early in our relationship by suggesting I go to a Halloween party as a woman. This wasn’t received well. She said she didn’t want to see her boyfriend in a dress. However now we have kids she’s encouraging them that it doesn’t matter which side of the shop the clothes come from as long as they like them.

Any thoughts/advice/experiences of sharing your clothing choices with partners?
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Daryl
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by Daryl »

Andy_G wrote:
Sat Jan 23, 2021 7:02 am
I’ve finally realised that rather than simply wanting to wear a skirt, I’m genderfluid when it comes to clothing. It’s taken a long time to understand this and it’s now reaching the point that I need to be open rather than my wife find out accidentally. I’ve been a little careless on occasion and left labels lying out and the last thing I want is to seem deceitful or raise suspicion.

I tested the water early in our relationship by suggesting I go to a Halloween party as a woman. This wasn’t received well. She said she didn’t want to see her boyfriend in a dress. However now we have kids she’s encouraging them that it doesn’t matter which side of the shop the clothes come from as long as they like them.

Any thoughts/advice/experiences of sharing your clothing choices with partners?
This is probably the most difficult area possible. Your wife sounds enlightened but she obviously doesn't want to see you seeming too much like a woman. That's personal taste not prejudice and there is no calling it "wrong" to try to win the point. Winning is never really winning in a marriage, it's just two people losing. Try to imagine yourself in her position. How much like a man would she have to become before you stopped find her comfortable as an intimate partner? Since you have not said you are bi or gay, I am assuming there would be a limit. A moustache powered by rogaine perhaps? Not an exact analogy obviously but you get my point. It isn't only about whether or not she "should" respect your fluidity, is it?

I'm going to suggest that you start small with baby steps rather than just jumping in to "come out" as "genderfluid when it comes to clothing". My wife had no trouble with me in kilts but used to say things like "I won't go out with you if you do this or that", most of which things I eventually did including wearing pointy heels (which I still know make her cringe but also a bit jealous). But what may be different for us is that my wife knew I was inclined to be sex-norms playful (or experimental, or something) before we had kids, so there was no chance of feeling betrayed and trapped once the commitment of our relationship got even deeper (as children definitely do to a relationship). You need to be careful about that if you want your relationship to survive and be joyful not full of resentment and bitterness and feelings of betrayal. You won't be the first person on the planet to deny yourself something for the sake of something even more important, if it comes to that.

It sounds like your wife is a reasonable woman. Maybe just talk to her about her limits when you get your first very "manly" skirt, then see how it goes from there. My wife and I have it as an ongoing topic, but she will still come with me into women's clothing stores and shop with me.
Daryl...
KiltedintheValley
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by KiltedintheValley »

My wife was hesitant even with kilts in the beginning. However, once I showed her how "manly" a kilt can look, she fully accepted it. However, she has been slow to accept my skirts. I believe there are two issues here. One, she is used to seeing men in pants or shorts. She still associates skirts as a feminine garment. She understands some styles look better on me than others. I defer to her judgment in this area. Two, I was bullied my entire childhood (not for wearing skirts). That left an incredible scar on me. She fears I may be bullied at some point concerning my clothing choices. I assure her that, as a middle aged man, someone bullying me is not a big issue any more. As a matter of fact, my confidence level is much higher now than it has ever been.

I have taken some steps recently to ease her concerns. First of all, when I run my usual Saturday morning errands alone, I wear a skirt of my choosing. I let her know that no one has said anything negative to me. As a matter of fact, I get compliments from time to time, especially from women :D . Secondly, I let her choose a skirt for me to wear when we are out together. The only exception was today when we went looking for a new china cabinet. I wore a denim maxi skirt when I ran my Saturday morning errands and forgot to change before we went to the antique mall. She didn't say a word. We went about our business as if my skirt was a normal thing! (It is normal for me, and will be for all...soon!)

My children are my biggest cheer leaders. I have an adult daughter, a teenage daughter, and a young son. My son actually expressed a desire for a denim skirt to wear around the house! I do believe my daughters' generation will push men in skirts to a whole new level.
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Sinned
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by Sinned »

Andy, having a wife whose attitude to skirts can confuse the hell out of me, I may not be the best to offer advice. My wife is generally accepting provided I don't wear a skirt every day. She is absolutely against me wearing a skirt outdoors and that is the main area of friction. Illogically she knows that I do, on occasion, wear a skirt out of the house but she chooses to ignore the fact and doesn't ask me about it. Occasionally, if I am driving her somewhere, I can wear a skirt as I wouldn't be getting out of the car. Having discussed this you need to find out her limits and initially work to them - STRICTLY. Only when she is comfortable push the limits, gradually. Baby steps here, baby steps. Have I made progress? Sure, I can get away with more now than a couple of years ago but, for the sake of our relationship, I love her and am grateful for the acceptance that I have. After all, she could be a lot more difficult and put strain on our relationship. You may have to accept limits and you may also have to accept that she may turn around tomorrow and refuse to accept your skirts. My wife sometimes has her moments!
I believe in offering every assistance short of actual help but then mainly just want to be left to be myself in all my difference and uniqueness.
Faldaguy
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by Faldaguy »

Andy, I note that though you joined MIS several years back; you have not posted very often, thus I wonder if you have explored the many many discussions on this topic? It is a common thread, and there may be some useful tidbits in those you will find helpful.

If there is any single item that I see come up repeatedly on this topic, it is the need to be open and honest -- no sneaking around, that inevitably backfires.

A few of us are very lucky and have understanding, or even supportive S.O's. I suspect most of us have had some 'rough patches' or places where mutual comfort zones did not emerge at the same time...so the 'gradual' approach also seems to be commonly recommended.

Each person is so different it is difficult to render generic advise. In some instances you can appeal to logic--when my wife expressed some reservations when I left the property into public venues, just asking her "why should men have less fashion freedom than women?" appealed to her senses of justice. Other times logic goes nowhere! I think being able to demonstrate either in reports, or better in person, that the world really does not care and little of any significance results from our clothing choice goes a long way toward putting your OH at ease. Once they've gone shopping with you, some public exposure with no one going off the rails, they find it easier. Compliments, usually from women, are fairly common -- and once a spouse sees or hears this happening, it seems to help ease their worries.

Probably not going too "swish" or "girly" at the onset makes it much easier too.

On your end, don't cringe -- own your garb; that confidence will help you and everyone around you.
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by moonshadow »

Good advice rendered in this thread, I can add nothing more other than to have patience with the wife. It's one thing to wear skirts, even somewhat "feminine" ones, as we all know of the double standard that exist on the other side with women freely wearing "guy" pants.

But diving into transgender matters is a whole different can of worms. Understand if you transition fully into womanhood, your wife has to decide if she wants to part ways, or carry on in what is now a lesbian relationship.

You have the right to live your life as you see fit, but she does too. Hopefully you all can find a way to make it work.

For what it's worth, I too dabbled in the genderfluid thing for a while when I first started, however I realized it really didn't change who I was anyway, and since then finally settled on calling myself what I actually seem to be, a guy (man) VERY much at peace with his inner femininity. This "identity" seems to square with myself AND society, thus it works for me.

We are what we are.

Good luck!
Andy_G
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by Andy_G »

An interesting day! Yes, I don’t post very often, but that’s not unusual of me on other forums either. But giving that some thought, I wonder if I’m actually in the right place. I don’t want to take this off limits so please forgive me if I stray a little too much from what’s acceptable.....

I had some time alone today so decided to venture out. I went out in full women’s clothes - wool camel midi wrap skirt, grey jumper, red women’s jacket, men’s Adidas trainers and a bobble hat! No make up or wig, and certainly no attempt to “pass”. I didn’t feel anywhere as near anxious as my previous outings just in a skirt, and had absolutely no reaction what so ever. This was in contrast to the long glances and smirks when I was only in a skirt. I felt comfortable with who I was, and felt at ease when I changed back.

Absolutely no desire to transition etc, but it was a liberating experience, and for me certainly easier than previous outings.
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by moonshadow »

You haven't crossed the line. We have several transgender members here.

As for your outfit, I frequently wear entire outfits from the female side of the aisle. In fact, I'm sitting here typing this wearing a pair of black flats, denim midi skirt, red "womens" sweater, and a black sleeveless decorative shirt over it.

All items in female sizes.

FYI, underwear is where the line is here.... stay north of that and you'll be fine.

But remember, you are completely free to be a man AND be as feminine as you want. This does not violate the laws of physics or the universe, I can assure you the planet will keep rotating as it's done for ages.
Last edited by moonshadow on Sun Jan 24, 2021 11:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
pelmut
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by pelmut »

Andy_G wrote:
Sun Jan 24, 2021 6:10 pm
...I had some time alone today so decided to venture out. I went out in full women’s clothes - wool camel midi wrap skirt, grey jumper, red women’s jacket, men’s Adidas trainers and a bobble hat! No make up or wig, and certainly no attempt to “pass”. I didn’t feel anywhere as near anxious as my previous outings just in a skirt, and had absolutely no reaction what so ever. This was in contrast to the long glances and smirks when I was only in a skirt. I felt comfortable with who I was, and felt at ease when I changed back.

Absolutely no desire to transition etc, but it was a liberating experience, and for me certainly easier than previous outings.
When I finally realised I was transgender and decided to go for a more feminine look, I had a similar (slightly eerie) exerience: no reaction at all.  It was much easier than trying to be a man in a skirt - quite the opposite of what I had expected - and has given me great respect for the members of this forum who unequivocally present as a man and dare to wear a skirt in public.
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by crfriend »

No line crossed.

We are a diverse lot, and this includes fully masculine guys who just happen to like the feel of both legs shoved down one tube to those who are in the process of "transitioning" or who have. It's a big tent.

With luck, we are judged by the quality of our characters and who we are rather than what we wrap ourselves in. Quality of character is key. If we stand tall and be ourselves fully, folks will either admire us or hate us based on their own character. We cannot control the latter, but we have full command of the former.
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by skirtyscot »

Andy_G wrote:
Sat Jan 23, 2021 7:02 am
However now we have kids she’s encouraging them that it doesn’t matter which side of the shop the clothes come from as long as they like them.
Are they girls (in which case, not a a big deal) or boys?
Keep on skirting,

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Andy_G
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by Andy_G »

Not meaning to be inflammatory, but why does that matter? What’s the difference between a boy liking the pink Minecract t-shirt to the girl wanting the camo one?
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Re: Approaching the issue with significant other.....

Post by Ray »

One’s boringly conventional. The other is thrillingly open minded
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