This blog post was suggested in response to something Michelle wrote in her blog, The Michelle in Me, entitled Why am I here? In it, she asks the question: "Why do I have this identity on the Internet?" And it got me thinking. In turn, Michelle's post was prompted by this blog post, Public or Private? by Tina Cortina. This blog post is an elaboration of the answer I posted to Michelle, with some thoughts from Tina's post too.
First, I’m all about words. Some guys go fishing, some play golf. For me, words are one of the things which relaxes me the most. So a blog is a natural thing. Words are innate to me.
I maintain three blogs: one is my professional work one, which covers my research and links to my academic publications (I have written and published quite a lot). It gets a handful of hits most days. The next is my family one, where I post updates about us and the kids and what we are up to. Again it gets a handful of hits a couple of times a week, when someone wonders about the latest news.
Third, a tremendous amount of what is out there on the Net about crossdressing just doesn't sit right with me (Hairy men in panties? Aargh!). I discussed this in greater detail on another of my posts, Just Like Me? But in my own blog, I can talk about the issues which interest me, and I can put across my own points of view, which don't quite accord with those you might have read else where.
Fourthly, this blog was about developing and maturing my feminine identity. I have posted a couple of pictures of myself here. As I explained elsewhere, I am not an especially successful crossdresser, and many pictures of me dressed are somewhat repellent. Once in a while, I get a nice one, and I've used a couple here. I can look nice 24/7 and present my best "face" to anyone who logs on. In addition, as I said elsewhere, when I first started to crossdress, I fantasised that my feminine self was somehow different from my male self: tempestuous, flirtatious, daring, where I am none of those things in real life. On the other hand, I realise now that actually, Vivienne is not a different side of me, she is me. And therefore, even when dressed, I am scholarly and bookish and academic. So I can be that person here on my blog. Me, but on a good day.
I had great trepidation starting off this blog. My first concern was that nobody would read it. In fact, to my great surprise, within six months the hit counter had overtaken my academic blog, and there has been a varied and interesting selection of comments and discussion posted in response to my articles. I try to find something interesting to write about, so that people will be amused or entertained or a bit intrigued. I think there is no point writing unless people read what you write. On the other hand, some of my favourite posts have garnered very few hits, where others which I consider quite weak have had hundreds of hits. So it shows that me and my “audience” are not wholly in sync!
|Inviting: A blank page and a fountain pen|
The second reason I had great trepidation in starting off this blog is that it made me feel guilty because I was sure my wife would not approve. Though I tried to think of the least harmful way in which I could explore my femininity in a safe and academic way while not being emotionally or physically unfaithful in any way, it still felt wrong, because it was behind her back.
Recently, I told my wife about my blog and she was quite supportive. She wanted the link and I gave it to her, though I honestly can’t tell if she’s read much, or indeed anything. She’s certainly never mentioned it or spoken of anything she’s read. I feel a tremendous sense of relief that I am now blogging with her approval. On the other hand, now I am slightly less comfortable posting, just in case she is disturbed by what she reads. Some of these thoughts are echoed by Tina, in her blog post.
My wife aside, I am almost certain that nobody I know has read any of this blog. But if they did, they would instantly recognise me, for my style of writing, if not for my appearance. (If you do know me, please talk to me about all this!) On the other hand, it's clear that quite a lot of people who stumble on this blog are looking for something else entirely: the search terms which Blogger lists leave me in no doubt that intellectual discussion is far from the minds of some of those who find themselves here!
So overall, this blog has been a great success. It's enabled me to explore my feelings, discuss them with others, and express a point of view. I feel a little bit at home here, where I can be myself, express myself, and unite myself.
Polonius: What do you read, my lord?
Hamlet: Words, words, words.