Sensuous in Satin

Reflections on Transgender life

Party like there is no tomorrow!

Posted by Adrian • Thursday, May 10. 2018 • Category: Being transgender

My friend Emma recently posted in the TgR forums an observation about the transient nature of the transgender lifestyle.

So are we the last of the Trannies? I suspect so. I suspect we will go the same way as the Masons, the Night Soil Man, the Anti-Larrikin Squad, and Bob Santamaria’s Point Of View. Society moved passed all of them and it will move past us as well. Is that a bad thing? No, of course it isn’t. Society evolves – that is exactly what it has been doing since we either crawled from the primeval slime or stole that forbidden fruit. It is healthy and it is right.

Emma and I are from the old school - and sadly are just plain getting old.

The new school doesn't need all the social infrastructure that we developed last century.

And so those structures are crumbling around us. Over the last 10 years it has been like watching Limbo City collapsing in Inception.

Of course I have my theories. And as they are as good as the next woman's I might share them.

Before the 1970's if you had any desire to dress you kept it to yourself.

Going out in public was a high risk strategy; telling anyone was suicidal.

The result? A lot of very a lot screwed-up Transgender people who probably didn't even realise they were trans.

How many of the loonies in Mental Asylums were in fact suppressed cross dressers? We will never know.

This means that anyone born before, let's say, the mid-60's has suffered to a greater or lesser degree from their gender being suppressed.Although we may like to deny it, the baby boomers and older, carry mental scars. We suppressed our gender for so long and most importantly during our adolescence when we were trying to 'find ourselves'.

Although it became more common to dress and go out in the 1980's the need for secrecy was still paramount. Life in public was tough; you frequently copped abuse or worse. And so the community developed social structures where it was safe to come out of your shell. Secret crossdressing societies flourished, balls and private restaurant nights popped up in most capital cities, and we started sharing information on Bulletin Boards and then the web. Life in our shells, and out in the public eye was so stressful we had to release the tension by having fun - in little bursts, once or twice a month. Life was great - as long as you didn't take yourself too seriously. We didn't realise it at the time - but what were were seeking was closer to therapy than real life. And for many of us, the therapy worked.

Meanwhile a new generation was appearing. A generation which had not experienced the mental persecution of the last century. Society moved away from a position of hostility towards the gender diverse, and without the need for safe spaces and therapy, the youngsters just kept pushing the boundaries of social acceptance. Change in the last 10 years has been so fast it is undermining the very assumptions (dress code, secrecy, relationships) that used to define our "Tranny" life.

The baby boomers had to make a choice. We either moved with the times, or stayed in our comfortable but crumbling structures.

The movers threw away the secrecy, told the world, and participated openly in society; after all, the youngsters said they had a right to be there. And as more of the community was seen the attitude of society changed faster.

The stayers found that they were all getting older, their numbers were dropping because of natural attrition, and life just wasn't fun like it used to be. Soon the East Wing had to be locked and left to decay, then the West Wing, and now they are thinking of locking the front door and down-sizing. It is getting harder and harder to find the therapy - and paradoxically easier and easier to get the drugs!

I was lucky - helped by a bit of not-so-gentle nudging out of Seahorse I was forced to move. I really miss the old "Tranny" life - but I now have a completely different therapy - near universal acceptance in public.

As Emma observed, the writing has been on the wall for anyone who cares to read it. Sadly if you aren't in a position to jump into the big bad world without your armour on, then there is little you can do. But as they proved on the Titanic - you can have a lot of fun dancing to the band whilst the ship goes down.

Let your hair down girls and party like there is no tomorrow!

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