09 March 2018

Online competition redux

Back in April 2016, I mentioned an online competition where I won a voucher, which I used to buy a skirt and dress, both in size XL.

According to their size scale, XL should have been an Australian 12 (38-30.5-40) to 14 (32-32.5-42), and at the time I was basically a size 14 to 16 (34-34.5-44), so I knew that I was too big for them, but thought that they might have enough stretch, and that I might lose enough weight for them to fit.

I very quickly realised that neither were going to fit at the size that I was, and put both back into their plastic bags, chucked them in the bottom of my wardrobe and forgot about them.

Until today.

In an odd sequence of events, I bought a plastic headless female mannequin today. It's 34-27-37 (about a size 8), but its very close to the same height as I am. The idea is to start by padding it to my size, then use it to make new padding to bring my proportions to a female size larger than I used to be.

The first step is to find some fabric to cover the mannequin. A pair of footless tights that neither my wife or I wear wear an obvious start, and they are tight enough to fit it properly.

I was looking through my wardrobe to see if I had any small but stretchy tops that would be the right size for the mannequin, and I spotted the dress and skirt.

When I put the dress on the mannequin, I discovered that it is actually pretty close to a size 8, except that the waist is probably closer to a size 10. Even if I lost weight until I was below a safe minimum weight, I would never be that small.

20 January 2018

Resetting the body clock

Years ago, I mentioned that my sleep patterns were screwed up.

On new years eve, I found myself at home alone, with my wife and son having gone to the last 3D screening of the most recent Star Wars movie, then to my inlaws' place for dinner.

I made the decision to have my shower early, and go to bed by 11pm, to see if I could reset my sleep pattern.

Twenty days on, I've managed to be in bed by 11pm every night, and even by 10:30 one night. As a consequence, I've been getting up around 7am. For the first few nights, I lay awake for hours, but stayed in bed and eventually got to sleep. After a few nights, I started getting to sleep faster, and I haven't used an alarm since I started this process. After many years of sleep deprivation, I think that I'm starting to make progress towards getting somewhere near the amount of sleep that I need.

Unfortunately, I've been experiencing back pain in bed, and that's interfering with my sleep. I'm fine during the day, but it becomes painful while I'm in bed. I finally realised that the issue is our mattress, which has developed a pair of distinct depressions, one on each side of the middle.

Because my wife comes to bed anywhere between about 3am and 6:30am during school holidays when she doesn't have to get up to make sure that our son gets up and goes to school, I have had the opportunity of experimenting with sleeping on the hump in the middle of the bed, between the depressions, then moving across when she comes to bed. I quickly discovered that the pain from sleeping there is a fraction of what it is in my normal sleeping position.

We ordered a new mattress yesterday afternoon, and it should be delivered next Saturday.

Much as I'd like to get to bed by 10pm and up around 6am, I have to wait until my teenage son has cleaned his teeth before I have a shower, or he will go to bed without cleaning them. Unfortunately, he steadfastly refuses to clean his teeth until around 10pm. Without a second bathroom, I simply don't have a solution.

If I can maintain my current sleep pattern after I return to work on Monday, and after my son returns to school the following week, I hope to start walking regularly in the mornings before work. I have tried walking in the mornings, but so far I'm not awake enough until at least an hour after I get up, and that wouldn't work for getting to work on time. Hopefully, the new mattress will help me to sleep better, and I'll be able to get moving earlier.

Then I can start trying to work on my weight.

20 November 2017

TBN China Red redux

Almost two years ago, I grabbed several bottles of the then-discontinued nail polish TBN China Red, which I've been using almost all of the time for years.

After trying to transfer the dregs from one bottle into another to get enough in a bottle to get my nails done last week, I googled the colour wondering if I might be able to find some more old stock...

Imagine my surprise when I found that it's a current colour again!

On Thursday night, I went to a chemist in Charlestown Square that carries the brand, and got one bottle that looks exactly the same as the ones from before, for just $2.95. There was another bottle labelled something like "new French formula", which I didn't buy.

I figure that I'll have a look around a few of the other chemists that carry the brand if I happen to be nearby, and stock up in case it is discontinued again.

19 November 2017

Two years on

The second anniversary of the last time I went out en femme slipped by quietly a few days ago. That means that the third anniversary of the second last time I went out went by a few days earlier.

Having recently set a new all-time maximum weight of 103.5kg, I have discovered that I'm having trouble with what I assume is fat at the top of my abdomen pressing upwards against my sternum and ribs, causing some pain and shortness of breath. Clearly, I have to start losing some of the 30kg that I've gained over the past six years!

I'm now trying to work out how to rearrange my life to get back on track, without a lot of success.

12 June 2017


Back in January, I mentioned that I was making an effort to lose weight, without much success. A few months on, things have gone from bad to worse. I regained all the weight that I had managed to lose, and then some. I'm now 101.5kg, heavier than I have ever been before.

I don't want to weigh this much, but I've reached the point where I really want to dress and go out even if I know that I don't look as good as I would like. That means I have to be able to dress for my current weight. I recently tried a few different combinations of body shapers and padding, and came to the conclusion that I need to use the large foam breast forms that I bought when I was experimenting with pregnant costuming a few years ago, to balance how big I am elsewhere. With them, I measure 122-92-127cm (48-38-50"), which makes me about a 4XL or Australian size 22.

That rules out every piece of "pinup" style clothing, including two dresses that I bought when I was around 94kg, but never completed a blog post about.

Oddly, I found that one of the pairs of stretch jeans in my wardrobe fits my current size quite well, but they're boot cut and a little short to for my height. Looking back through old photos, I've realised that I should have two pairs of boots that might be suitable, but I have to find them. I think that I stored them in the attic. With the boots being fitted on the calves and me being bigger now, I don't even know if either pair will fit.

Combining a loose fitting top over a stretch v-neck t-shirt that covers my bra, I assembled a fairly nondescript outfit that I can wear. I'm yet to try to do hair and makeup to suit it, which will obviously not be the pinup style that I've done for the last few years. I'm way out of practice, and I'm yet to go through my makeup and make a shopping list of what I need to replace, so I don't expect to get out all that soon. :-(

10 January 2017


I think that the phrase "I ATE'NT DEAD", which the Terry Pratchett character Granny Weatherwax would place on her body while she was having out-of-body experiences, has a parallel to where I'm at.

Me, at 73kg
I'm not dead, but I haven't been me in over a year. That's right, not a single outing in 2016, and not many blog posts, either. :-(

Yes, I continue to have long painted nails and long dyed hair, but I haven't done hair and makeup and dressed en femme in over a year.

In the past couple of months, I've begin making an effort to get my weight under control, with limited results. From a peak weight of 101kg, I'm now consistently between 95 and 96kg, but I don't seem to be able to get below 95. I look at a photo from when I was 73kg, and I like how I looked. I look at a photo from when I was 96kg and I can't stand how I look, to the point that I don't want to dress while I weigh this much, because I know that that is how I would look.

Today, I saw a post from Paula at Paula's Place, about why some people stop going out dressed, which referred to another couple of posts from others. Of the various explanations posited, I don't think that any of them cover why I stopped.

I stopped because life got too much. I think about it several times (or constantly) every day, but I couldn't cope with depression, an excessive workload, rejection within the trans community and a myriad of other issues. The biggest problem was a feeling that my wife and son, while not overtly rejecting my activities, don't like it and make me uncomfortable doing anything girly while they are home.

The only way I could see to work around my wife and son seemed to be to extend the house such that I could dress in a part of the house that was separate from where they were. After two attempts at getting planning approval over several years, it all came to nothing. I've recently been looking at a much scaled down extension that would still achieve the same thing, but with only me earning an income and having recently made an unexpected investment property purchase that will pay off in the longer term, we are now so financially stretched that I don't see much chance of building an extension for a few years.

So all I can do now is concentrate on losing weight, and doing any improvements I can to the house that we have, in the hope that somehow, something will make a difference and I will be able to go out again.

02 April 2016

Online competition

Back in February last year, Stana posted a selfie of mine in the blog post Alice's favorite photo (of Alice!) on her blog, Femulate, as part of a series of reader submitted photos of themselves.

In February this year, Stana posted about what she referred to as an Online Womanless Competition. When I went to the web site hosting the competition, I was rather surprised to see my selfie on their site, shrunk to the point of making the watermark unreadable, then attached to a an unrelated image. My first thought was that when I went to the site, it had somehow used the image from my Google or Facebook profile, but it was a static image that everybody got if they went to that site during February. 

I was simultaneously upset that they used my photo without asking me first, and pleased that they thought that it was good enough to steal.

With that in mind, I had to think about whether I wanted to enter their competition, and ended up doing so just before it closed. Since they wanted a full-length photo and I didn't want to submit the same outfit as the photo that they'd swiped, I ended up submitting photos of the outfit that I wore to a nail appointment in April 2014, a fortnight before the photo that they had used.

I submitted three photos ~ a close-up selfie, and front and rear photos taken at the salon. Oddly, I was apparently the only person to submit a rear photo.

After a few weeks of waiting, the results came out. They'd apparently struggled to choose the winners. They'd chosen two entries for first and second places but took a while to decide who got which, and they had to bring an extra judge in to break a three-way deadlock for third place.

After all of that, I came second. Apparently they thought that the detail of my makeup let me down. Given that outing was before I had my eyelids done, it wasn't entirely surprising because my lids always hid my eyeliner. The close-up photo that they were judging was also taken at the end of the outing, by which time my foundation was shiny and the whole lot generally faded. Overall, for something that was never intended to be a competition entry, I'm pretty happy to have come a close second. :-)

The prize was a US$50 voucher to an online clothing store called Choies. I ordered a dress and a skirt (both red), which totalled about $47. I'll just have to wait and see if they will fit...

17 January 2016

A belated review of 2015

I updated the graph of frequency of outings that I posted last year. The one test run outing in November means that the total for the year wasn't zero, but it can't get much worse!

A year ago, I was upset at having gone over 90kg for the first time in over 20 years. This New Year, I went over 100kg for the first time in my life, peaking at 101.5kg. I also had swollen ankles and feet. It appears likely that the swelling was caused by the fact that I'd gone back to taking ibuprofen on a regular basis, and it's likely to have contributed to the weight gain. Like back in 2012, I've had to stop using ibuprofen completely, but this time it is probably going to have to be permanent. Within 3 days, I dropped 2kg and the swelling virtually disappeared.

Unfortunately, I still haven't got my hunger under control. I'm still eating too much, part of which is comfort eating. Surprisingly, even though I'm depressed, I'm nowhere nearly as depressed as I have been at my worst.

I've also been on holidays since just before Christmas, and will return to work tomorrow (Monday), meaning that I need to spend at least part of today getting the office and yard organised. While I've been on holidays, in spite of intending to get to bed earlier, I've fairly consistently ended up getting to bed far later than intended, and consequently getting up later than planned and getting very little done.

In what I can only describe as a devastating blow, we found out around Christmas that our house plans, that we've been working on with an architect for several years, isn't permitted at all in the zoning of our property. The letter from the council to the architect didn't quite say that he should have known from the outset that it wasn't going to be possible, but came close to it!

Our current property is in an area intended to be re-developed as units, townhouses, etc., and building a large extension of a single house simply isn't going to be allowed by council. Also, the architect used the building envelope allowed for units or townhouses in planning the house extensions, giving us the impression that that would also be acceptable to council. After seeing those plans, I don't think that our next-door neighbours on either side are talking to us any more.

As I did with limited success back in 2014, I now need to look at things that can be done to rearrange the house that we have to be more liveable, while trying to work out what we do next.

12 January 2016

More China Red

My favourite nail polish, TBN China Red, is now a discontinued line. :-(

Because of my relatively large nails, I go through a fair quantity of polish every time. I've been buying a bottle or two from time to time, but when I went looking for it at the usual places, they still had the brand but not the colour.

I remembered seeing it at a chemist in Wallsend (across the road from the op shop where my sister-in-law's mother used to work), but I rarely go to Wallsend because it's a bit inconvenient to get to, and parking is almost always difficult. I made an effort to go there yesterday, and the drive was as bad as expected, but I fluked a parking spot right outside that op shop. Since I was in the area, I had a brief look around four op shops along that side of the street before heading across the road to the chemist.

They had a stand with the same brand of nail polish but not the same colour, so I asked the lady at the register, and she asked another woman to check in a cupboard, where they had some old colours of the same brand. She found one of the right colour, and I said that if they had any more, I'd take them too.

She continued looking through and found one that was half full and dried up. I assume that it must have been a tester that had ended up amongst the others. Because it looked like it was no good, the woman at the register decided not to charge me full price for them.

In total, they had seven including the dried up, half empty one. Imagine my surprise when they charged me just $3 for the lot!

When I got home, I checked them closely, and I'm confident that only the half empty one has been opened. The other six appear to be in good condition, full and the liquid moves around in the bottles how it should.

So, it appears that I have at least a couple of years' supply. :-)

28 December 2015

My mother just joined Facebook

The only person who has, to date, consistently told me that I shouldn't have my nails long and painted is my mother.

Not including yesterday, every time she had the opportunity, she'd make it perfectly clear that she didn't approve.

Imagine the response that I was bracing myself for, when my mother (who is older than my Oldsmobile) suddenly appeared on Facebook and sent me a friend request.

It turns out that, on Christmas Eve, she was with one of her neighbours at a street party and the conversation got on to seeing family at Christmas. Somehow, it evolved to the neighbour taking my mother's photo and assisting her in creating a profile using the neighbour's mobile phone.

When they went looking for people to send friend requests to, they found the profile photo of my boy profile... After my test run outing last month, I updated my profile photo from the one that I had used from last year, to the one from last month.

In view of her disapproval of my nails, I anticipated similar disapproval of my profile photo.

Yesterday morning, she rang me to let me know that, while she had joined Facebook, she was having trouble using it. In fact, she couldn't even log in using her computer and the neighbour who had created the account was now overseas visiting relatives. She had rung my brother, and he had logged into her account with his computer to test that it was working, and told her that the problem had to be with her computer.

So yesterday afternoon, I went to visit my parents, and they both stood and watched as I sorted out the problem. Her account indeed failed to log in on her computer. To work out why, I typed her password into a new browser tab (without pressing enter), intending to cut and paste it. I discovered that, due to a keyboard fault, some characters were intermittently appearing as accented versions of the intended character. Once I had the correctly typed password, I cut and pasted it, and Facebook happily logged her in. I also ticked the Keep me logged in box, so hopefully my father will be able to sort out the keyboard problem before she needs to log in again!

I then spent some time adjusting privacy settings, sorting out the waiting friend requests, etc, while explaining all of it, and giving her a bit of a run down on how to use the most important aspects of Facebook. I'm anticipating having to go back again in a few days to go through some of it again, and answer any additional questions that she might have.

At some point, she remarked that she and her neighbour had seen my profile photo when looking for my profile to send a friend request. I don't remember the adjective that she used (I think that I might have been in shock), but she commented that they both thought that I looked [quite] good.

I'll just have to wait and see if this also means that she'll no longer make negative remarks about my nails...

26 December 2015

Experiencing vulnerability

Something that I've touched on in the past, is the feeling of vulnerability that I have experienced in the past while out en femme.

I recently came across this article, which I think is very relevant to anybody who was raised as male but goes out in public as female, regardless of whether they are part time or full time.

It's not something that I thought of before, but I suspect that this may be part of why transwomen are more likely to experience violence than women who were raised as female. We don't have the years of childhood training of fear of males and how to avoid conflict with them.

The feeling of vulnerability is something that I assume that the vast majority of us have experienced at some time or other, but it was interesting to find a couple of articles, one from the UK Sun newspaper, and the other from Pink News, about how Eddie Redmayne felt vulnerable on set while playing Lile Elbe.

16 November 2015

To do list

I mentioned yesterday that there were a few things that I wasn't happy with, with my test run on hair and makeup after such a long time not getting any practice.

I decided to write myself a list before I forgot. The things that I need to work on for next time.

Perhaps the silliest thing of all was that, in spite of actually looking at the hat before I started, I mixed up mirror images and photos, and did my hair back to front relative to which side of the hat should have been the bottom. It probably doesn't matter a lot, because it's probably not obvious to other people, but I know that I got it wrong. The fabric "flowers" on the hat are supposed to be near the bottom edge, but by putting the rolls on the wrong side, I forced myself to put the hat on the opposite side, meaning that the flowers were at the top of the hat.

The other thing about the hair at the front was that with the hat this far over, there was a rather empty looking space on the top. I'm pretty sure that it would look better with three rolls, so that the hat tucked against the side of the top roll.

The hair at the back was a completely separate issue. I tried to use setting lotion to put it into a single large spiral as I've done a few times before, but I was in too much of a hurry, and didn't get enough lotion into the hair to wet it thoroughly enough. I spiralled it and clipped it up with a sectioning clip before I did my makeup, but when I undid the clip, the hair basically just fell down in a frizzy mess. Next time, I need to either set it in a row of hot rollers so that I get a row of wavy spirals, tie it in a side pony and spray it so that it stays as a solid spiral, or put it up. I've done a Gibson Roll fairly successfully, I've worn a snood with some difficulty getting it to stay in, but I haven't managed to do victory rolls yet. I'm pretty sure that the hat would work well on top, between victory rolls, but I've got to try to work out how to get the rolls to stay in place.

Because I do makeup including a light touch of contouring between my breasts and highlighting over the breasts, I put my breast forms on before I start on makeup. I'm pretty sure that they ended up about half an inch too high today! An old rule of thumb is that, if you fold your arms, your breasts should be resting on your arms. If there is a gap, the breasts are too high.

Eyeliner is something that I'm still re-learning because of the change in my eyelids from the blepharoplasty. Before, whatever eyeliner I did would always be hidden by my lids and the liner would transfer onto the underside of the drooping part of the lids. Now, there's a reasonable width of lid that doesn't get covered, but I found from today's effort that I will have to do a narrower line than I tried today, as one side still got a little transfer.

I've also realised after looking at photos, that I need to work on both the length and angle of the flick at the outer end of each eye. With mascara applied and my eyes open, the flicks disappeared.

I also discovered two problems with my brows. One, the natural colour is darker and browner than my hair, and the only way that I could get my brows to look right with my hair was to add some brown through the length of the brows to hide the fact that the natural colour extends through less than a third of the length of each brow, thus toning down the auburn. It worked, but I probably need to reduce the darkness of the brows a little more by selective tweezing of the darkest hairs.

I also need to be more thorough in shaping my brows! After I applied my foundation, and drew on my brows, there were some rather obvious stray hairs under my brows.

Aside from that, the overall makeup application was fair but it was obvious that I was out of practice.

Two other things that I know that I need to practice again are walking in heels, and my voice. While I went out in flats, I briefly tried heels after I got home, and my ankles didn't want to flex far enough to walk properly. I could write a couple of years worth of blog posts about my voice. Suffice to say that on today's outing I whispered while I was out, as the only direct interaction was at a busy checkout where the nodding and shaking of my head to correspond with my responses meant that the vocal responses were actually superfluous.

Finally, there is the elephant in the room. At least, I feel somewhat like an elephant when I look at the depressingly large "spare tyre" around my abdomen. Short of buying a proper corset in my current size, there is no way that I can squash my waist in to be the size that I want it to be. :-(

15 November 2015

Test run

After realising that I hadn't been out for a year, I began thinking about what was stopping me.

I've had my hair dyed to a brighter shade of auburn since January, and I had my eyes done in July. I really wanted to see how both of these things would affect my presentation.

In the back of my mind, I already knew what the problem was.

Lack of practice.

I knew that I was going to need to experiment with brow and hairline colouring for the change of hair colour, and with eyeliner to suit the change in my eyes.

The problem was that I'd got to the point where I was so out of practice with both hair and makeup that I didn't know how long it would take me to do it, if I could even get it to work.

For months, I've been wanting to practice both hair and makeup, but on the rare occasions that I'm not actually working face-to-face with customers, I've always got something else that needs to be done.

Today, I finally made the decision that I would ignore the work that is waiting and take the time to experiment. The sequence was to partly do the hair, do all of the makeup, then complete the hair.

There were details that I wasn't happy about, but overall, I was happy enough to dress and duck out to the local supermarket. I only wore flats, and I knew that my presentation wasn't as good as I would have liked, but at least I got out the door.

06 November 2015

not very happy anniversary

Facebook's "On This Day" feature alerted me to the fact that yesterday was a rather unhappy anniversary for me.

It was 12 months since the last time that I did my hair and makeup, and went out en femme.

I checked my diary from back then, and found that I'm also 8kg heavier than I was then, which limits my options for outings because it significantly reduces my wardrobe options.

I did buy another couple of dresses several months ago, which I never managed to complete a blog post about even though I took photos. I'm about 5kg heavier than I was when I bought them, so it's possible that they would still work if I could find a strong enough corset...

At present, I have no idea when I might next get out en femme.

26 September 2015

Getting coated

In spite of not having dressed or been out in about 10 months, I've still been looking for a red wool coat, as it's something that I'd been looking for, for some time. Up until a few days ago, I was looking for a new coat in a vintage style.

(C) Circa Vintage
Then I found a genuine 1950s wool/mohair coat at Circa Vintage, in my size, cheaper than most of the reproductions that I've been looking at! It was on sale at $55. With postage, it came to $70.

I was going to include a link to the listing for the coat on the web site, but the listing was removed once the sale was processed. Until the coat arrives (probably Monday or Tuesday), I only have this one photo from the web site, scrounged from my web browser's cache. From the measurements given on the web site, the coat should be just about the perfect size for me, and the woman shown wearing it is probably a couple of sizes smaller and considerably shorter than me. From the measurements, the sleeve length should be just about perfect for me, and the (raised) hem should be a little above my knees. There is the option of letting the hem down if I so desire.

24 September 2015

Bilateral Blepharoplasty

I had bilateral blepharoplasty surgery done in early July.

In simple terms, bilateral means both sides, a blepharoplasty is removal of excess skin from an eyelid. It's done by taking a piece like a crescent moon out of the lid then stitching it up, so that the scar ends up mostly hidden in the lid fold.

I took quite a few photos over the first ten days, and decided that they were too gross to share. Then life got busy and this post sat unfinished, because I hadn't added photos.

I kept telling myself that I'd do makeup and take photos showing how much better my eyeliner will look, but that hasn't happened either. The before and after photos at right are from the last time I went out en femme (November last year) and tonight without makeup. Those really are the same eyes!

I was told by someone who had the same procedure years ago, that if the lids were drooping onto the lashes, I might be eligible for a Medicare rebate because the drooping lids could be contributing to headaches, meaning that there is a legitimate medical reason to have it done. I've had ongoing headache problems for years, and I didn't think that this would really make a difference but I was interested in getting the procedure at least partly paid for.

Of the $1200 that the procedure cost, I got rebates from Medicare and my private health insurance totalling about $350.

To top it all off, the prediction that I had ignored, that it would help to reduce headaches, was also correct. I haven't had headaches as often since the surgery, and those that I have had have not been as bad as that headaches that I got before. :-)

28 May 2015

Optometrist, revisited

I mentioned back in November last year that I went to my optometrist en femme to collect contact lenses, and that the staff behaved as they would have if I had been there in boy mode.

Yesterday, I had to go in for an eye test, which I did in boy mode. One of the staff who was there last time was away on holidays, and another woman who had worked there before was back filling in. That meant that the optometrist and one of the other staff members were the same people as were there in November.

Not a word was said about how I was dressed last year. Nor were remarks made about my nails, as had happened on previous visits. In fact, mirroring their behaviour last year, everything was exactly as before.

I'm not sure but I think that they simply said nothing because they were not sure how to approach the subject and I didn't say anything about it to start a conversation. I don't think that they were actually uncomfortable with it. If they had been, I think that I would have seen subtle changes in their behaviour.

13 April 2015


I did something silly yesterday. I was trying to break up some plastic to put it in the bin, and the wrong thing broke...

Fortunately, nail glue saved the day...

The second photo was taken just after I glued it. A couple of hours later, I buffed the glue and it's a lot harder to spot than it was even in this photo. :-)

10 April 2015


I've recently realised that my life is completely on hold, and has been for some time.

I'm waiting, but I can't work out what I'm waiting for ~ the complete breakdown of my marriage, the point at which I reach the bottom of a depression cycle and kill myself (unlikely, but it remains a possibility when I'm really stressed), our son reaching adulthood and moving out, progress on house extensions (possibly with a revision so that we have separate rooms ~ I know that the extensions won't solve our relationship problems but they may make it possible to live more separate lives without actually separating), or something else ~ I don't know what.

My depression, comfort eating, inability to concentrate on work (leading to a work backlog that keeps me permanently behind and stressed about the work that is not done), significant weight gain (I'm around 95kg ~ the heaviest I've ever been), feeling of being unwelcome in my own home (which means no practising hair, makeup or voice), etc are all folding in on each other, leaving me an emotional and physical wreck.

As a consequence, I completely missed the Kurri Kurri Nostalgia Festival this year, and didn't get to the Street Rod Nationals at Easter in girl mode either, having gone in boy mode to take my son on Sunday.

The Street Rod Nationals are an annual event that is held in a different state each year. I think that this was the first year it's ever been in Newcastle, and will be several years before it will even be in New South Wales again. Given the focus on vehicles from the mid 1960s and older, it is connected with the whole retro pinup dress style, so if I'd been up to it, I would have had valid reasons for three days of outings over two consecutive weekends. Instead, it's now over five months since my last outing, in spite of having my nails done regularly, and my recent move to having my hair dyed regularly.

So, I don't know what I'm waiting for or how to move past whatever it is, but in the meantime, life is passing me by and there doesn't seem to be anything that I can do about it.

06 February 2015

A shadowy match

I must be getting a bit slow in my old age. It took me a few days after getting my hair dyed to realise that I didn't have an eyeshadow that was a close enough match my new hair colour to do my brows and to fill in my hairline.

The first chance that I had to get out to look for a suitable eye shadow was Wednesday, a full week later.

Having found that the shop in Charlestown Square where I bought my last bottle of China Red nail polish no longer stocked that shade, I also needed to go to a different shop that I knew had previously had it. There was one in the Kotara Homemaker Centre (a "bulky goods" and "factory outlet" area), which is quite close to Westfield Kotara). The logical answer, then, was to see if I could get the nail polish, then try some of the stores in westfield Kotara for the eye shadow. If I struck out there, I could continue up to Charlestown Square to try more stores there.

First stop, nail polish. I found a stand with the right brand of polish, spun it around and found the colour that I was after. The top of the stand proclaimed that the price was now $3.50 per bottle, up from the previous $2.50. I figured that I may as well grab two since the place isn't that convenient for me to get to.

While I was there, I decided that I may as well have a look at eye shadows in case they had something suitable. One of the young women there asked if she could help me, so I explained what I was after. She looked and discovered quite quickly that they had nothing suitable.

When she went to the register to put the nail polishes through, it turned out that they still scanned at $2.50 per bottle. :-)

I then drove to Wesfield, and immediately headed to David Jones, who have the largest range of cosmetic brands in the centre. I walked around a little looking at colours and spotted a Dior powder that looked promising. Before I had a chance to test the sample, one of the sale assistants asked what I was looking for. Once I explained, she led me all over the cosmetics section, finding only one MAC colour, Brick Red, that was vaguely close but too red.

The sales assistant suggested that I look at the brand Chi Chi at Target, because they often have bright colours. So I walked to Target (at the other end of the centre), and looked at Chi Chi. None of the colours were suitable, but in the next aisle I found a BYS tester that looked very promising. HS75 LOL. I swiped some onto my thumb, then had to find a mirror sveral aisles away so that I could compare the colour on my thumb to my hair. It looked close enough to take the gamble on its $6.95 price tag.

Tonight, I tried doing a quick application on my brows then comparing it to my hair colour. Without foundation, it's still not a thorough test of the colour. It showed up the fact that it's not all that strongly pigmented but it confirms that it should be a close enough shade to do the job.

28 January 2015

Something I've been wanting to do for a while now...

Today was a good day. :-)

This is not a wig. I finally got my hair dyed. Properly.

The last time I tried to get it dyed, the local hairdresser that I went to talked me into only having foils, and I wasn't happy either with the colour, which I thought was too red, or the fact that I knew that the ends were damaged but she didn't see the damage and therefore didn't remove it. Back then I found split ends almost straight after it had been cut.

After that experience, I tried a DIY semi-permanent colour that only really created subtle highlights, and I had it trimmed a few times by a different local hairdresser, who subsequently moved away.

This time, I trekked to the other side of town to Hair by Sophie, who came highly recommended, and not just because Sophie works part time at Miskonduct Klothing. ;-) Sophie is an award winning colourist, and it shows in her work. I showed her a childhood school photo on my phone, and she got the colour just right.

I think that it's the first time that I've ever been completely happy with my hair when I've left a hairdresser, and still been happy with it when I've looked at it after I got home!

It wasn't until after the dye was done that I realised how close the colour is to the "flame red" wigs that I used to wear. Both the wigs and the dye colour were chosen based on aiming for the colour that my hair was in childhood, so it makes sense that they'd be similar...

It'll be interesting to see how people react, since it will obviously also be this colour in boy mode, too. :-)

PS the odd little wrinkle in my hair is because I had it tied up while I was eating dinner. It wasn't like that when Sophie finished it. The before and after photos on her Facebook page are much better than my photo!

13 January 2015

Taped toes

I've struggled for a long time with wearing the red Siren stilettos that go so well with most of my red retro outfits. As I've mentioned before, they simply aren't as comfortable as the many pairs of Tony Bianco heels that I have.

Someone posted a link on Facebook recently about how to be more comfortable in heels, and aside from the obvious things like wearing shoes that fit properly, one of the surprise suggestions was to tape the third and fourth toes together. There is a nerve that runs down the foot and splits between those toes. Apparently wearing heels tends to aggravate that nerve, but taping the toes together prevents that aggravation.

Today, I decided to try it. Using 1.25cm (0.5") Leukoflex plastic medical tape, I taped the toes together so that they were firm but not tight. I could feel the tape while my feet were bare, but it was loose enough that I could easily ignore it. With shoes on, I wasn't even aware that the tape was there. I wore the shoes for several hours including walking around the house quite a bit, which was far more than I've ever been able to do before.

I wore the tape for about ten hours, including about an hour gardening in heavy socks and boots, with no real discomfort.

Mind you, this post includes a photo that I never thought that I would post. I've always been unhappy with how my feet look, particularly as the fourth toe on each foot curls under the third toe. They've been like that since childhood, probably due to wearing shoes that were too small. Apparently it could have been fixed easily in childhood, but now it would require surgery that has a lot of potential complications. It's not painful, so I have no intention of doing anything about it except wearing closed toe shoes! On top of that, the photo was taken shortly after taking off the high heeled shoes, so there are several unsightly pressure marks.

06 January 2015

A step in the right direction

Over the past few days, I've been trying to work out how to address my weight gain and screwed up sleep pattern.

Yesterday, I saw a link to this article about depression. It's an interesting read. The basic theory is that depression may in fact be an allergic reaction causing inflammation of the brain.

One of the things that can contribute is body fat, particularly around the belly. So, if I can get the weight down, not only will the depression ease due to actually getting out, but it may also be reduced directly by getting rod of belly fat. That's a win-win solution.

So how do I start?

As it turns out, I actually realised what part of my problem was yesterday. For the past few days, I've been noticing that my stomach seemed to be unusually large ~ a food baby. So I started to consciously think about how much I was eating and drinking and when.

First, I realised that while I'm eating a reasonably healthy cereal for breakfast, I'd been gradually increasing the amount that I put in the bowl each morning. Okay, reset the quantity of cereal.

Then, during the day, I'd have a cup of tea around lunch time. Except that it's a rather large cup... As in 600mL (a pint). Not only is that a fairly large volume to put into the stomach in a fairly short period, but it is also quite a bit of caffeine. I've been drinking cups of tea this large for a long time ~ I had been for some time before I even started this blog, but recently, it had increased from one around lunch time to another after dinner and often one in the afternoon.

Clearly, Ibuprofen isn't the only addiction that I'm struggling with! Aside from that, tea is a diuretic and may be the cause of needing to get up in the middle of the night. So I made the conscious decision to cut out the tea for a while, and drink more water instead.

I still got to bed after 2am last night, but slept through to about 10am. It's a small step, but it seems to at least be a step in the right direction.

05 January 2015

A stupid habit

I've mentioned my screwed up sleep patterns quite a few times before. It, depression and my weight are three of the things that most interfere with my going out en femme. I've lost count of the number of times when I simply haven't got to bed early enough to get up early enough to get my hair and makeup done to go out.

Over the past ten years or so, I've gone from not needing to get up during the night, to needing to get up after about five to six hours sleep to pee. I'm not sure if it's an age related thing, but it has progressed from once in a while to basically every night.

That wasn't a big issue until I did something really stupid in the morning on new years day.

Instead of simply going to the toilet and straight back to bed, I stopped at the computer on the way past. Check Facebook, email, blog, etc., then back to bed. Except that I was at the computer for over an hour, and consequently got up that much later when I got up again.

I did the same thing every day since.

You know that it's a problem when you're getting to bed after 3am, up for an hour and a quarter at about 9:30, then back to bed, and finally getting up at noon.

Ideally, I'd like to be getting to bed by about 10pm, up at 6am and going for a walk most mornings. Unfortunately, I can't find a way of doing that.

04 January 2015

My other project

I mentioned way back in July that some of the non-crossdressing things that I've been doing have implications for outings in the future. I just realised that I never explained what I was talking about.

Progress is slow because I spend so much of my time working, or collapsing in a heap due to exhaustion from working, as I did just before Christmas, but I've embarked upon a project to restore and modify a seventy seven year old Oldsmobile. When I finally complete it, it will complement my retro outfits at events such as the Kurri Kurri Nostalgia Festival. :-)

I'm contemplating naming it Mary, as a play on the old advertising slogan "Merry Oldsmobile", but most people have been less than enthusiastic about that idea.

03 January 2015

Subtly unsubtle

It's now only two day until the fourth anniversary of when I started having acrylic, gel and colour on my nails.

While I initially got them done every 3 weeks, I found that I was simply too rough on them and changed to getting them done every two weeks, usually on Wednesdays.

This year my nail appointments worked well around Christmas. One was in the week before Christmas, when I got them done red and gold, and the next one was new year's eve.

It may appear that I returned to the usual solid red nails, but appearances can be deceiving... I've decided to get glitter in the acrylic from now on, meaning that in low light, you'll still only see the solid red, but in brighter light, the glitter reflects through the red. The inspiration came from the gold glitter that was on the red nails, some of which sank through the red before it dried.

Being only an infill, only a relatively small fraction of the acrylic contains glitter so far, but over the next few appointments, there will be gradually more and more until there is glitter all over all of the nails.

Of course, being relatively little glitter in the nails, getting a good photo is very difficult!

02 January 2015

What do you get when you cross...

What do you get when you cross stress related comfort eating with an elimination diet aimed at addressing irritable bowel syndrome, while trying to gradually lose weight?

The answer, it seems, is a fairly rapid weight gain of around 5kg (11lbs).

Worse, that was before Christmas, so the rapid increase from 86kg to 91kg was exacerbated by the excess that is Christmas day. Fortunately, Christmas last year probably involved the least over eating of any Christmas in at least the last 15 years, so I peaked at 91.5kg.

I'm not sure whether I should take comfort from the fact that the heaviest that I know I've been in the past is 92.5kg, or be dismayed that I haven't been this heavy in almost 20 years!

Unfortunately, this weight gain has had the effect of putting a stop to my outings. Aside from the effect that all that weight has on my feet when wearing heels, the dress that I wore last time I went out is the only pinup style dress that I've got that will fit my present shape, and I'm not keen to wear the same thing over and over.

To top it off, while trying to be polite, I ate something on New Years Eve that I knew that I shouldn't have. I've been too sick to exercise since, and expect it to take another couple of days to settle down.

01 January 2015

A disappointing trend

Inspired by a recent post by Meg at Call me Meg, I plotted a graph of my frequency of outings en femme over the past few years. Sadly, my graph tells a much different story to Meg's.

I haven't gone back any further than 2008, because the count was taken from photos that are arranged by date, and before 2008, it wasn't unusual for me to dress and take photos without going out. To get accurate figures further back, I'd have to dig out my old diaries and check each photo date to work out whether I went out or not.

Of course, one might argue that aside from a couple of days when I had no colour on my nails, I've been out en femme every time I've gone anywhere since early 2011, but it's not really the same thing...

24 December 2014


Christmas seems to have arrived very quickly (or perhaps suddenly) this year. I'm sure that it was Christmas only a couple of months ago, and all of a sudden another year has gone.

I've gone with a baubles covered in gold glitter look for my nails this year. :-)

I nominally finished work for the year on Friday last week, but spent from then to Monday night working madly on trying to complete unfinished work. I got about a third of the remaining work finished, and most of the remaining jobs at least started, then fell in a heap. The pressure of trying to finish it all before Christmas was too much, and I ended up with a headache that made it impossible to concentrate enough to get any work done. As a consequence, I expect to be working on paperwork (but not answering the phone) between Boxing Day and New Years Eve, which is my next nail appointment.

Incidentally, contrary to my last post, there was a court injunction handed down today against the closure of the railway line into Newcastle on Boxing Day. I have no idea whether they will stop running trains into the city, but they aren't allowed to start removing infrastructure such as level crossing boom gates and the overhead wires, so there is some chance that I'll still be able to catch the train into town for at least one more waxing appointment. :-)

Oh, and it's well over a month and I still have a girl photo as the profile photo on my Facebook boy profile. It turns out that it simply isn't an issue.

10 December 2014

End of an era

Today, as I've done many times before, I caught the train into town (Newcastle) for a waxing appointment. This time, I also walked to Civic to pick up some contact lenses that were on back order last time I was there, then caught the train home. By the time my next waxing appointment is due, there will be no railway line into Newcastle. :-(

The railway line is being shortened, with the last 3 stations (Newcastle, Civic and Wickham) being closed permanently, and a new station being built near the old Wickham one as a new terminus that is supposed to become an interchange to light rail, but it's not clear when or if that light rail will happen.

As a matter of principle, I won't pay for parking in Newcastle. So, from now on, my waxing appointments will either be on Saturdays, when pay parking doesn't apply to as big an area as during the week, or I'll drive and walk a long way.

Similarly, visits to my optometrist, which is not open on Saturdays, will be by car, parking several blocks away and walking.

A couple of interesting things happened. One was that the staff at the optometrist's practice again behaved as if my last visit had been perfectly normal.

The other thing was far funnier to me. When I got to Civic station, a rather scruffy looking family were waiting on the platform. While I was watching, the mother walked across and spat down towards the tracks. A boy then tried to copy her, but ended up spitting on her. Eww...

I checked the time that the next train was due and, upon finding that it would be about 15 minutes, went to the take-away food outlet next to the station and bought a drink, walked past the family and sat down.

A few minutes later, I'd finished my drink and the train was still not there, so I walked past the family yet again to put the cup in the bin, then past yet again to get to the right part of the platform for where I wanted to be on the train. The final time that I walked past, the father noticed my red nails and, to me, looked idiotic when he pointed to them and shouted to the family to look at them. I walked away with a big smile on my face. :-)

23 November 2014

On having facebook "girl" and "boy" profiles

When I've posted about Facebook in the past, I've always been a bit worried about mentioning that I have boy and girl profiles, as I did in the post about auto-unfriending, because I'm aware that it is technically a breach of the Facebook terms and conditions to have more than one profile, and to have a profile that is not in your legal name.

Recently, in spite of what appear to be fairly poor efforts in regards to removing or preventing blatantly fake profiles and pages that have been quite obviously set up for phishing and spamming, Facebook has become quite active at disabling and even converting valid profiles into community pages, merely because the owner has used a name that is not their real name.

There was also quite a significant controversy a few weeks ago, when someone systematically reported hundreds of drag performer's accounts as fake, resulting in Facebook disabling their accounts. Around the same time, at least 2 of my non-LGBT friends were affected by similar disabling of accounts. One was able to get his account re-enabled by having the first name changed from the name that everybody knows him by, to his legal name that most people didn't even know. The other, in spite of providing proper legal ID, had his profile converted to a community page and lost hundreds of photos, private messages, etc..

In this context, I had always feared that Facebook would crack down and delete my girl profile.

When I changed the profile photo on my boy profile to a girl photo on Tuesday, I thought that I'd wimp out and change it back within hours, and probably delete or hide the photo. I haven't, and as a side effect I've come to the realisation that the artificial separation between my male and female personae is probably not really necessary any more. To be honest, in spite of having my nails long and painted all of the time, before Tuesday, I didn't expect to ever break that separation down to the extent that I have done now.

I'm actually giving real consideration to the possibility of deactivating my Facebook girl profile in the near future, and just having my boy profile, which is in my real legal name, and has hundreds of work clients and several of my nominal business competitors amongst my friends.

20 November 2014

Can't get much more out on Facebook...

If I thought that I was very out on Facebook before, I've now taken a quantum leap further out.

On Tuesday, I changed the profile photo of my boy profile on Facebook. It's now the photo on the right, but without the watermark linking to my blog. That means that anybody on Facebook can see this as my profile photo. Whether people will make assumptions such as it being my sister or my wife is entirely up to them. :-)

At this stage, I'm not going to add my male name here because it's a relatively rare name and that would cause google to link my male name to this blog, which I'd prefer not to do at this stage. If people know how, it's trivially easy to make the connection.

So far, there have been a lot of supportive and a lot of joking comments, but none have even been passive-aggressive let alone negative or judgemental. :-)

05 November 2014

Breaking the drought

Prior to today, my last outing en femme was in April. I'm happy to say that I managed to go out today, breaking what I think might be the longest outing drought I've had since about 2001.

Being so out of practice, I was surprised that I managed to get my hair done okay with enough time to do my makeup. I wasn't surprised, though, that the makeup took about 75 minutes, and I still wasn't entirely happy with many details.

I arrived at the salon with about 5 minutes to spare, but they were running behind time, so I was able to go to the Building Society before my appointment.

After being greeted and complimented by two staff members there, I returned to the salon, where I was complimented by the client before me, both staff members and a nail products sales rep who arrived just before the end of my appointment.

After my nail appointment, I drove to my optometrist, as planned. There were two female staff members at the front counter, and when they went to process my health insurance card to find out how much the fund would pay, they had so much trouble with their computer that they ended up having to get the optometrist (who is also female) out of a consultation to try to fix the problem.

I was a little surprised that all three of them treated me exactly as they would if I was in boy mode. After previous conversations that I've had there, I expected some sort of response.

With a little time up my sleeve, I drove to Miskonduct Klothing, had a browse and chatted with Steph, who I've known for many years.

02 November 2014

No Tinkerbell this year, either.

Like last year, I had vaguely hoped to repeat my 2012 effort of going to Halloween in Cardiff. Unfortunately, reality had other plans, and with October 31st being the dealine for tax returns in Australia, I had to try to get all of the paperwork for my business and our rental properties sorted out, complete and lodge the return before Friday night.

I got far too little sleep between Monday and Friday, and struggled to work around bugs in the e-tax software that the Australian Taxation Office supply for doing tax returns. One bug caused the software to crash on my Mac (the only supported platform that I have) every time I tried to start it on Thursday night, so I wasted several hours trying to work out how to get around the problem without making any progress on the actual return.

On Friday night, I found a clue in a web forum on how to side-step the problem ~ copy the saved file to another account (user profile) on the computer and use that account instead. The program then ran. When it got to the point where it had been crashing, I twigged as to what caused it to work on Wednesday but crash on Thursday... There was a box offering an introduction to the software for people who hadn't used it before, and contained Yes and No buttons, plus a don't show this again tick box. The last time I'd started it, I ticked that don't show this again box, and now it crashed when the software was told not to show that box! Changing to a different account bypassed the problem.

Other problems included a worksheet for low value immediate deductions that wouldn't calculate after the 7th row, and the fact that the roll-over process of copying information from a previous year adds (Rollover) in front of the name of a rental worksheet, meaning that after 4 years of rolling it over, the software had made the address (Rollover) (Rollover) (Rollover) (Rollover) address. This non-editable field was now deemed too long by the software and rejected, meaning that I had to create a new worksheet, enter all of the details again manually, then delete the old worksheet.

So, after working through a massive number of illogical and frustrating problems over several hours, I managed to lodge my return Friday night.

Looking at the time, I decided that I'd see how I felt in the morning. If I felt awake enough before 9am, I'd do the whole thing without any hair or makeup practice, without completing all the preparations that I normally do, and in spite of the fact that I am currently 5kg (11 pounds) heavier than I was when I last wore the costume and didn't like how much I bulged around the waist last time.

Saturday morning, I spent quite a bit of time trying to convince myself that I was up to it, while knowing that I wasn't.

I still had to go into Cardiff to go to the Building Society, but when I realised that it was about 37°C (99°F), I was glad that I hadn't decided to wear a costume that would have involved at least 2 body shapers, padding and 3 pairs of tights...
I chatted with several of the staff at the Building Society who were disappointed that I hadn't dressed up, but understood the tax return dramas.

Last night, I managed to do many of the preparations that I normally do before an outing, including epilating and trimming my brows, shaving my hairline, getting my wife to trim the hair on the back of my neck, and washing my hair.
If all goes well, I might manage to get to my nail appointment this week en femme, and get to my optometrist to pick up my contacts while I'm at it.

12 October 2014

Behind the dark path

I've had several people comment or message me about yesterday's post. To all of you, thank you. I'd like to particularly thank the one person who actually offered to help me with hair and makeup.

I think that perhaps the only way to explain where I'm at is to explain where I'm at and why I'm so stuck.

My wife and I met in 1998, and married in 1999. She always came across as slightly distant or aloof, but claimed that it was a trait of her Gemini star sign.

After our son was born in 2003, her behaviour changed for the worse in subtle ways. I thought that she was suffering from post natal depression, and repeatedly urged her to seek treatment. She refused, apparently believing that she didn't have a problem.

Over the years, I've probably expressed concern about her apparent depression and suggested that she seek professional help at least every six months, because in spite of (or possibly because of) how badly I suffer with depression, I can see that her problem is far worse than mine.

Recently, a relative of my wife's had her son diagnosed as very mildly autistic. Upon learning that Autism Spectrum Disorders are genetic, and that it is common for the carrier parent to be diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome shortly after their child is diagnosed Austistic, she began reading up on Asperger's and realised that while she has some traits in that general direction, the symptoms fitted my wife far better than they fitted her.

She sent me the link to this web page, which has a section titled "Issues for partners of people with Asperger syndrome or ASD". It accurately describes the behavioural changes that I saw in my wife after our son was born, that I had been interpreting for all these years as depression.

When I read an article about a book about Girls and women who have Asperger's Syndrome, I was distressed to realise just how well it fits my wife's behaviour.

So I tried to discuss the fact that she may have Asperger's or a similar disorder on the autism spectrum with my wife. She has basically refused to even get a referral to a psychologist because she doesn't want to be labelled.

One person I know has been telling me for years that I should separate from her, and I already know that in spite of how biased towards giving mothers custody the family services system is, because of her behaviour and her relationship with our son, I would get custody. Our son struggles with her behaviour, and is more relaxed when they are apart. Aside from not wanting to be seen with me when I am crossdressed, my son prefers to be with me rather than with his mother.

The problem is that I still love her, and I've always seen marriage as a lifetime commitment.

Over the years, I've tried to make small changes in my work and around the house to try to make it possible for me to cope, many of which I've mentioned here in various blog posts. With my wife's refusal to seek diagnosis, I've tried to work out how to make changes that will help all three of us, and failed miserably, to the point that I've come to realise that my son and I would most likely cope better without her unless things change soon.

So, faced with the choice between going against my core beliefs and separating, and continuing to try to get the family to function again, I've continued to try. The problem is that crossdressing is an important part of who I am, and it is something that I have to do occasionally. While I struggle to keep everything else together, having my plans consistently ruined at short notice has put me onto that dark path. Even just one successful outing would probably be enough for me to cope far better with everything else for a few weeks.

11 October 2014

heading inexorably down a dark path

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I don't know how long I can hang on by my fingertips. Today, I came to the sad realisation that my life as it is now is leading me inexorably down the dark path towards suicide. I'm not talking days or weeks, but I can't honestly say that I will still be around in 6 or 12 months time.

Fundamentally, I am struggling with depression, exacerbated by comfort eating and severe sleep deprivation. How badly I struggle varies from day to day. One of the consequences of my depression is an inability to concentrate on paperwork. Unfortunately, paperwork is very much the core of my work, and falling behind means that time that I should be spending doing other things becomes time spent, usually very unproductively, trying to catch up on that paperwork.

Add in the fact that so many people seem to have no concept of personal space and time, and insist on contacting me via every available mechanism at all times of day and night, seven days a week, and the interaction between my work, over eating, sleep deprivation and depression is a downward spiral that I struggle vainly to escape from.

Surprisingly, my work is not the source of my depression problem. It just exacerbates it. The root cause is a relationship problem that I cannot fix, and cannot escape. Worse, I've recently come to the realisation that even if I could fix or escape that problem, there's no point in doing so as I no longer believe that I can fix the other problems that have come about as a consequence of the relationship problem and the long term depression.

So, for example, rather than getting up early and going to Sydney to a free hair and makeup event at Beauty Heaven a few weeks ago, where I would have got to catch up with several friends who I haven't seen in years, I surrendered to my depression, slept in and stayed home. Reading about the event from some of those who did attend made me even more depressed, knowing what I had missed out on.

To try to overcome a growing feeling that I'm no longer able to go out en femme, I planned to go to my nail appointment last Wednesday en femme. After planning it for a fortnight including doing the usual preparations such as epilation, I was informed the night before that I was expected to go, in boy mode, to a 5pm information session for a selective high school that we might want to try to get our son into. The option of going to my nail appointment en femme was taken away from me, reinforcing the feeling that I'm no longer allowed to go out en femme.

So, for now, all I can do is continue to plan and attempt to go out, realising that every time I plan to go out and am prevented is another step down that dark path, but making the decision not to try would be a one-way trip right to the end.

14 September 2014

Being out, but not going out

I've only been out en femme 4 times this year, and yet I seem to be more "out" than ever before.

On Friday, I had 2 male work clients who I'd never met before, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Both commented on my nails and asked what type of outfit they were to go with!

In both cases, I responded with "1950s pinup style". Both were quite happy with that answer, with one commenting that one of his friends used to be in Les Girls (a surprisingly common response given that there haven't really *that* many members of Les Girls).

While looking up the contact details of a guy (on Facebook) who is able to do rectification work for the second client, I pulled up the photo of the outfit that I wore to Kurri Kurri last year ~ on my boy profile. :-)

IMATS Sydney is on next weekend. After going on the Saturday last year, the year before, and the year before that, I'm not planning on going this year, and hence haven't bought a ticket. Unless someone miraculously decides to give me a ticket, I won't be going.

I went to get dinner at Subway last night, and while I was there, I also went to the supermarket, where I was served by the woman who asked if I was at IMATS last year. She asked if I was going to IMATS, and I told her no. I asked if she knew that it is at Moore Park this year and she said yes, and it's a bit inconvenient to get to.

Having been to Moore Park back in 2011, I know how inconvenient it can be to get to. Fortunately, I had looked at options for getting there earlier this year, and discovered that there are buses direct from Central railway station to Moore Park, and that you can actually buy a train ticket that includes the bus. I told the woman at the supermarket about the buses, and that there was information on the Cityrail (now Sydney Trains) web site. She sounded genuinely disappointed that I'm not going, but was grateful for the information about the buses.

While I'm not planning on going to IMATS, I may well be going to Sydney the following weekend, as I've been invited to an event at Beauty Heaven, similar to the one that I went back in 2010. It's remarkable how much has changed since 2010 ~ back then, I stripped the nail polish that was done at BH before I went back to work on the Monday. Back then, I wore a wig and wasn't into the '50s pinup style.

While I'm not going out anywhere nearly as often now as I used to, I'm far more comfortable with who I am, and who knows about me, than I was even a year ago. I would like to go out a bit more often, though!

06 September 2014

Plodding along

I've done some soul searching since my last post. I've come to realise that the root cause of my burnout is not my work at all. The real problem is relationship related, and my compromised ability to concentrate on and organise my work, which I initially interpreted is being the cause is in fact a consequence.

Worryingly, while the relationship issues that are causing the problems are essentially unrelated to my crossdressing, as with my work, my ability to organise outings has also been compromised as a consequence of the burnout problem. That compounds the problem, as spending time en femme is something that I enjoy, which helps to make me more productive in general, and would probably put me in a better frame of mind to deal with the relationship issues that I'm struggling with.

Where things go from here, I don't know any more. I've been clinging on by my fingertips since at least 2007, and I don't know if I can do it for much longer. Don't worry, while I'm depressed, I'm not suicidal at the moment ~ that was last week. Something will have to change soon, but what and how is up to my wife, as I've done everything I can to sort things out.

14 July 2014


I always used to conflate burnout with having a breakdown, and thought that once you recovered from the breakdown you were no longer burnt out. Not so!

I read this article recently after someone shared the link on facebook. I re-shared it. One person liked it, and nobody commented.

After reading that article, I realised that not only am I burnt out, but by my estimation, I have been for about 7 to 10 years. For now, I'm assuming that it is primarily because of my work but there have been some other issues over the years that I need to look at to work out whether they are causal or symptomatic.

Now I have to work out how I am going to change my circumstances to try to fix it. Changing jobs is not an option, so I have to work out how to change the one that I have. I also have to try to work through other problems that have been causing me stress and work out how to resolve them.

It's scary to realise that I have almost every one of the symptoms listed, and have blogged about my struggles with many of them.

I know that I have a long struggle ahead of me, and yet so far it doesn't even seem real...