Sunday, 6 October 2019

Vivienne-- The Next Steps

It's been a little under three years since I wrote this post, about the end of my marriage. During that time I've been going through a tremendous reframing of my life. There were several things which happened which were quite surprising, and I wanted to put them down here.

Meeting someone new

It will come as no surprise at all that I adore women. I always have. I'm more comfortable in their company, and I just feel better being around them. It was therefore inevitable that I would start dating again.

To get a few things out of the way, this was not about "sowing wild oats". I've never been that person before, and I am not that person now (even though one of my male friends, with the best of intentions, but without much delicacy, told me it was time to get shagging). So I was just looking forward to dinner, wine, and pleasant company.

Actually neither of us drinks coffee!
To my surprise, on one of my very first dates, I really clicked with a woman from work. We found we had a lot in common, and we were texting each other constantly. This presented a problem: to tell, or not to tell?

On the one hand, Missy was lovely, and funny, and had a host of good features. I was enjoying feeling attractive again, and I was looking forward to spending more time with her. On the other, I had escaped from a previous relationship which had been ruined, in large part, because of cross-dressing. I didn't think it was fair on this woman to take the relationship further without her knowing. I didn't think it was fair on me, to have to keep hiding who I am. So, on our second date, I told her there was something important she needed to know.

She blanched immediately. If you ask her about it now, she will tell you that the expression on my face made her think it was something dreadful, such as terminal cancer. But I slid my phone across to her, and showed her some pictures of Vivienne. She was surprised, of course, but her response was basically "Is that all?" And she was completely fine with it.

Having got that out of the way, the relationship blossomed. We moved in together a year ago, and things are looking great. I am enormously fortunate.

Vivienne went away

Missy wanted to meet Vivienne. I was incredibly nervous, but again, it was a lovely encounter. She didn't laugh. She didn't wince. She gave me makeup tips and bought me thoughtful gifts, including perfume, and a lovely handbag.

Vivienne in the kitchen
We went out together for a stroll round the town. I was unbelievably nervous, but I can't tell you how much I wanted this experience. I wanted to know what it would be like--for me, for her, and for other people. Amazingly, it was completely fine. We hosted a dinner for friends at home. It was bliss.

Having spent nearly 20 years being told that Vivienne was grotesque and perverse, I struggled to process all these feelings. I couldn't believe, at first, that being Vivienne was suddenly OK. One night I was in the bath, with lots of bubbly foam, and shaving my legs. Missy texted me to ask what I was doing, and I told her, and she responded very positively and said she hoped I was enjoying it. I was!

I found myself dreading, at any moment, that she was going to turn round at some vulnerable moment and say "Ha! Fooled you, you horrible tranny freak!" And of course she hasn't done this. After 3 years, it's beginning to sink in that she isn't going to. The trust is building, and it's a feeling which doesn't get old.

But the next part was another surprise: the compulsion to dress nearly vanished. I didn't change who I was. I continued to be Vivienne online. I continued to buy nice Vivienne things when I saw them. But the drive to dress, to express myself openly, seemed to go away nearly completely.

I wondered why this was. Was it because Vivienne was forbidden fruit, which, when suddenly available, lost some of its sweetness? Was it because I was so wrapped up in a new relationship that Vivienne was forgotten? Was it because there was so much else going on, with kids and work and school? Was it because all of us wax and wane with time; that we are not constant in our feelings and wishes?

There have been times when this has happened before, and I reasoned that Vivienne would return in time. Meanwhile, I wanted to be ready! I had new clothes, cosmetics, accessories. Not grabbed off the rail in the back of gloomy charity shops, but carefully considered to be part of a look that works well; these shoes would look great with that skirt.

Vivienne came back

And then, Vivienne came back. I gradually became aware of an insistent nagging feeling, which became more and more prominent with time. I realised that the feeling was unstoppable, and that it was time. So I've just gone with it. And there has been an explosion of experiences; more Vivienne time in the last month than there has been in the past three years put together. It's been amazing, and intoxicating, and it's still going on. Where will it lead to next?


11 comments:

  1. I have often wondered how you were fairing Vivienne and am so pleased to hear life is going well for you and your partner. May it long continue.
    Geraldine

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  2. I’m so glad that this long awaited update is such wonderful news. Keep rocking, Vv! You’re looking the kind of beautiful that happiness makes.

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  3. not surprising at all Vivienne and you are now in the process of discovering who you have been all along but were afraid to. Be honest with yourself and with others always and things will go well because suppression of you are is never a good thing.

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    1. It definitely isn't a good thing! I'm definitely feeling a lot freer!

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  4. This is lovely news Vivienne, the change in your tone from that you had three years ago is wonderful, you have been through a hard time but at last it seems to be coming together and you are clearly enjoying it. I wish you and Missy the very best for the future!

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  5. Missy sounds wonderful! She also echoed the words of my soon-to-be-wife when I wanted to give her a chance to back out of a marriage she might not be comfortable with. "Is that all? I thought you were going to tell me you're gay, or already married."

    She has since confessed that it's not the part of my personality she is most fond of, but she has always been accepting and nonjudgemental, even if she prefers to let me be myself at a distance. Approaching 40 years of marriage, I'd say she has held up her part of the bargain.

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    1. Hi Ralph.
      Lovely to hear from you again. It's been a while; I hope you are well. Are you active on Quora also? I think I've seen an avatar which matches you!

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