Difficult choices

One full month without dressing. That’s what I had to cope with.

When I look at that sentence, I have to look back to the past 7 years or so, when dressing became something regular — usually, every week or so. Sometimes twice per week; sometimes only every other week. But there was some regularity. And when something “came up” I would become seriously pissed up, frustrated, and sometimes even showing common symptoms of minor depression — irritability, headaches, lack of patience, lack of focus/concentration, sleeping badly, and so forth.

This is just to be accepted, after all. We all get frustrated when our expectations go down the drain. What is amusing to consider is that, 8 or 10 or 15 years ago, when I crossdressed much less often, I was not so frustrated by the lack of dressing. Rather, I just made the best out of the few days I managed to dress. This is pretty much what every CD friend of mine does, among those who have little freedom to dress when they wish (due mostly to family issues).

So it seems a bit arrogant of me to suffer for just skipping one or two weekly sessions, when others have to deal with long periods of no dressing whatsoever, stretching over months and months.

Shifting the blame

We like to imagine that we live in a world where people accept responsibilities; and accepting them is considered a highly-regarded ethical principle, and we learn that in our tender years. When, as kids, we do something wrong, if we have a brother or sister, our tendency is to lie and blame our sibling. Eventually our parents will figure it out and we get punished (even if these days it’s just with harsh words). Throughout our lives, we get educated to accept that we’re responsible for what we do, and to learn not to shift the blame elsewhere.

But nevertheless we use every possible excuse to do so. In my own country, even if it’s the least Mediterranean of all Mediterranean countries in Europe, we have strong Mediterranean cultural bias which have been impossible to shake off, and one of them is “blaming the Government”. Oh, I know that everybody, everywhere in the world, blames their government; but things are a bit different in some countries. In the Anglo-Saxon countries, and also throughout the German-speaking world, when a problem arises, the community rises to fix it. That’s their first reaction: we have to do something about it, let’s roll up our sleeves and solve the problem. While in the Mediterranean, if a problem arises, we ask the Government to fix it. We’re too lazy and egoistic to do it by ourselves. And if the government does nothing, then we wash our hands of the problem — we have successfully shifted the blame, and now we don’t feel guilty any longer for leaving the issue unresolved.

This is a tendency we all have at all stages. Ultimately, if you’re a believer, and there is nobody else you can shift the blame upon, then you blame God. Atheists have it a bit harder, but some can blame “random events in the Universe”. All that to avoid blaming oneselves.

It would have been very easy to blame a lot of people for the lack of crossdressing for a whole month. But in fact I’m the only one to blame: I voluntarily joined two very intense workshops related to my spiritual practice, which happened during the whole weekend and all evenings/nights (after labour hours), meaning zero time free for dressing. But it was my choice. I wasn’t forced to do so. I could have refused to join, or just join one of them.

At the beginning of the whole bunch of sessions I was quite aware of what it meant — a long period without crossdressing, and having to suffer the usual withdrawal symptoms. Naturally enough, after a while, my natural tendency to shift the blame to anyone else became manifest. Why couldn’t the organisers have arranged things so that we could get a few days off? But, again, this was just me being angry at myself — I did have the schedule beforehand, I knew it was intense, and I knew there would be no chance for crossdressing. So why blame it on anyone else but me?

It’s tough when you cannot avoid to accept responsibilities, specially when you’re agonizing because of your own decisions. But the irony is that I was supposed to be dealing with my own expectations and the resulting frustration of not fulfilling them. It was only then that I managed to smile a bit at my own stupidity, and recognize those feelings of anger as being utterly pointless: I wouldn’t feel better because of that. In fact, it would only make it harder to accept the responsibility of having made my own choice.

Temptation

In the middle of the third week, there was an unexpected twist. The main lecturer, seeing how tired people have been due to the intensity of all those sessions, took pity on us, and declared that we were entitled to a day off — he’d resume it afterwards or continue on the next workshop. This was quite unexpected, and all of a sudden, I saw my opportunity to at least get that day for my dressing! I felt immensely relieved and in high spirits, even though I was quite tired.

My wife, due to her array of diseases, and being even more tired than I was, was in a foul mood, which the rest on the “free day” didn’t improve in the least; at those times, I know that the best I can do is to keep my mouth shut. But this obviously created a new dilemma. When she’s in that kind of mood, just grabbing for the box where my wig is hidden will get her cursing and yelling at me, and, depending on the day, it will end in tears, kicking furniture, or her leaving the home in fury (rare, but it happened a few times). Well, to be honest, I wasn’t in the mood for taking all that, I was too tired, and too anxious to dress a bit to relieve my own urges. The least I wanted to face was a constantly-nagging wife. And, again, I was shifting the blame again: blaming her for having a temper, blaming her for being tired and in pain, blaming her for, once again, preventing me to enjoy a few hours of bliss.

So I made a decision. Even though I had all the opportunities to dress that day, the truth is that I wasn’t expecting that day to be a “free day”. So why spoil everything, and instead of enjoying the much-desired rest, spend the rest of the day with a furious wife?

While my concern was mostly to keep my wife away from her foul temper, it was nevertheless an egoistic feeling. By deciding that I wouldn’t dress that day, I would “buy” some peace of mind, because I could avoid being yelled at and facing another tantrum. So that would give me some opportunity to rest, too. Between dressing and resting, of course, I don’t need to tell what I prefer — specially because it would mean another handful of days with anxiety and frustration. But, again, it was my choice. It was hard to bear, but I kept my urges in chains, and just let that day finish without even mentioning the word “crossdressing”.

Obviously it wasn’t easy. It’s like an addiction when you decide not to indulge in the pleasures of the addiction. Sadly, crossdressing is not an addiction. It’s not like saying that by keeping away from crossdressing the urge diminishes. It doesn’t. Naturally, I could decide, from every day onwards, not to crossdress any longer, and thus avoid the anxiety and frustration — but the urge would simply become intolerable.

A colleague of mine once asked how he should deal with itching, and the answer was another question: what happens when you make the choice not to scratch? His answer was, the itching sensation grows and grows, until it becomes unbearable. But the truth is that it goes away, if you’re willing to wait long enough without scratching. We hear that from our parents all the time, when we get blisters for some reason or other, and aren’t allow to scratch ourselves. It’s actually true for most of those relatively benign physical pains — they come and go, if we just observe them, and are willing to patiently wait until they subside. It’s quite different with serious physical pain, like a broken leg — you can’t simply ignore it, it will hurt every time you step on it. The pain is there to tell you something is seriously wrong with the leg, which should not be ignored. Of course, how you react to that pain is different. You can completely lose your control and cry and yell and so forth. Or you can just notice that the pain in the broken leg is there, it’s not going to go away by merely wishing to do so, but you’re not going to die from a broken leg, all you need to do is to get a doctor to fix it and endure a few weeks in a cast. This is a completely different attitude than just get furious at something — shifting the blame to whatever caused the leg to break — and do nothing more about it than yell and ask for relief.

The urge to crossdress is just like a broken leg. You can ignore it, suppress the urge if you wish, but it won’t go away. What you can “send away” is the attitude you have regarding the lack of crossdressing. Instead of shifting the blame to someone, becoming furious, then frustrated and depressed… you can just accept that there are things in your life that are beyond your control. This was pretty much what I did. I had no further choices left: I simply would have to forfeit that extraordinary day with its unexpected free time, but, while the urge to crossdress was stronger than ever (feeling that I was “missing a chance”!), I could just accept that as a consequence of my choice. And, of course, rejoice that at least I didn’t need to deal with a furious wife in a bad mood.

Later on, when these very intense four weeks were over, I didn’t dress immediately. The last session was in the afternoon of a Sunday, one of the days I usually pick for crossdressing, and there was plenty of time left for that. But I just collapsed into bed and slept. I didn’t regret it — even though I’d rather prefer to dress, at that moment, the priorities were reversed. Later on, when I woke up, obviously I blamed myself for being too tired and wasting precious crossdressing time while sleeping, but there is nothing I can do about it: I’m merely human, and my body has different priorities than my mind 🙂

And, as things go, the subsequent days were “catching up time”, which is always what happens when I cannot count on having 16-hour-workdays to keep up with all the work. So, once more, instead of dressing, I made the choice to address the piled-up workload. To make matters worse, we ran out of money, which put my wife in the worst possible mood until I got paid on the last day of February. Only then, at last, I could finally have some time off for myself. Unfortunately, my wife went to bed so late that I didn’t even manage to go out for a bit, so I pretty much remained online chatting until the sun rose.

But did I get rid of expectations? Naah.

Expectations pile up, they don’t disappear, we can only hope to be able to deal better with them (in the sense that it becomes easier over time). Just thinking that I lost all those days without any dressing made me want to dress every day just to compensate! But, of course, that’s always pretty much impossible, my schedule is simply too busy for that.

To make matters worse, most people around me have their evenings and weekends free, and assume everybody else does, too. So they organize everything to be on evenings and weekends, thinking that it will better for me (and others). A typical example: my mother-in-law always insists in having dinner with us on Saturdays — every Saturday night is thus “lost” to crossdressing, which is a pity, since it’s the day most crossdressers have free time and there are more opportunities to go out. Similarly, I’m doing a 5-year course in Buddhist philosophy, which, for the same reason, is always on Friday night, “because everybody has Friday nights free”. True, but it means forfeiting the two best days in the week for crossdressing. While Sunday nights most people have to go to sleep early, and I don’t, sometimes people assume that I’m doing “nothing” on Sunday, and arrange all sort of things in the late afternoon instead — thus spoiling that day for me. My plans were for dressing again on Sunday, and, naturally enough, there was something I had to attend at precisely the time I would be spending in dressing.

During the week I have a very flexible timetable — I’d be fine if people planned things for me at all times of the day except evenings. But that’s exactly the time they pick. Unfortunately, even my wife does the same. I’ve lost track on all those days where I had nothing really important to do, with the evening free, and my wife spent the whole day playing computer games… until, by sunset, she suddenly announces that I will need to take her out shopping for food, thus spoiling the crossdressing session. It drove me to insanity a few years ago — she has nothing to do, spends 10 hours playing games since early morning, and why, oh why, does she “suddenly” desire to go out shopping in the evening, when we had the whole day for that?

Then I have this uncanny way to badly plan things. On Sunday my wife “announced” that we ought to go visit her sister, either on Monday or on Tuesday. My whole week until Sunday is naturally busy at evenings, thanks to everybody who wants me to do all sorts of things at those hours. So, fine, thought I, we can visit your sister on Monday, and I’ll have Tuesday free, I just have an online meeting to attend, but I can do that crossdressed, since nobody will see me. I’d expect her to arrange things with her sister on Sunday. No, she couldn’t be bothered to pick up the phone. Then, well, early today I asked her to call her sister and arrange things for the evening. She didn’t bother, ignored it, stuck to her computer games, and it was only after sunset that I told her that it would be quite rude to pop up at her sister’s place without giving her a call first. So, very reluctantly, she picked up the phone — and, as expected, her sister had already made other plans, and suggested we came to visit her on Tuesday evening instead.

So basically because of a phone call I wasted both days. Had my wife called her sister early in the morning, as I told her, she would have known her sister was unavailable — leaving me Monday free. Better still, had she called her sister yesterday, she might have arranged things differently. Of course, it never crossed either sister’s minds that we have the whole day free (her sister is also self-employed and has no fixed schedules). Why didn’t they arrange for lunch instead? In fact, it’s always very embarassing when we visit my sister-in-law, because she spends almost the whole time asleep. She also rarely eats with us, because she tends to have a very early dinner. So it’s a bit stupid to leave after sunset to someone else’s place, bring our own dinner, sit in silence, eat, watch TV, while the alleged host is sleeping all the time, except for opening the door when we come in and leave.

A more rational approach would be to just visit her during lunchtime, or early morning, or any other time… just not when she’s tired and wants to sleep. But no. My wife has this fixed idea that she wants to go over there at the time that is more convenient for her (and as most of you know, she’s at her most alert after sunset and until 4 or 5 AM in the morning).

Now I have considered switching my own crossdressing schedules. For instance, if I give up on evenings and nights, I could dress early morning and remain dressed until something popped up in the late afternoon, as it is bound to happen. Why don’t I change my own routine instead? The advantage of daylight is that I get better pictures, and will not be so tired anyway!

There are, unfortunately, two good reasons for not doing that. The first is that after getting undressed I might not be able to eliminate all traces of my dressing session. For instance, the perfume, as well as the odour of makeup, nail polish, and so forth, will linger for a while. My hair will be ruffled because of the wig, and often I get marks from the hairnet I wear as well. I could obviously take a bath afterwards, and probably that would get rid of most of these issues. The second reason is that I will not be able to go out. But since I haven’t been able to go out anyway, I might have to resort doing that some day. At least until my wife starts arranging things to go out during lunchtime to thwart my attempts of dressing during the day, but then I can revert back to my evening/night routine again 🙂

So obviously there are always more and more expectations, and I have to deal with them, one by one.

The next one will be tricky to deal with, and, of course, I’m bracing myself for the worst, which is almost certainly going to happen. If you have been following my blog for a while, you might have come across a plan, established a bit over a year ago, where my wife suggested that we might go out in vacation to a city nobody knows us, and then I could dress at will and go out, since there was no fear of getting recognised. I was excited by the idea, but both of us knew very well how hard it would be to raise money for that. For a while I even tried to put a few Euros apart in order to present her a trip to Venice as a gift, but unfortunately we needed that money again, and so this was endlessly postponed.

Well, sometimes there are twists in fate 🙂 My mother-in-law is subscribed to some kind of tourist service, which I hardly understand how it works, where she can reserve some apartments for free, a week or so every year. I have no idea if this is one of those time-sharing solutions or something else; all I know was that she enjoyed a few days off last year, but this year, she told us that we could have the apartment for free. After ascertaining that we would be able to cook in that apartment — or else, it would be too expensive for us — we sort of accepted, my wife complaining all the way, and shortening the planned week to just five days. The main reason is that she hates the place where we’re supposed to be going, which looks like this:

Vilamoura

It doesn’t look so bad, does it? In fact, I’m not sure if this is the exact spot, but it should be in the neighbourhood — and obviously it’s March, it’s cold and raining, so there will be no beach for us 🙂 which is perfectly fine, since none of us like the beach, in spite of living by the ocean!

Now I didn’t say anything, of course. I’m not too fond of any type of vacation, since that means lots of times away from the computer and the Internet (and while on previous years the company I work with used to pay the data access package on the phone, so I could access the Internet on my laptop through it, this year they’re cutting the packages to the bare minimums). Also, I have a quite different view of “vacation” than my wife does — for me, it’s an opportunity for doing nothing more than rest. For my wife, it means waking up at 6 AM and visiting everything she can visit and return at midnight, and do that every day until the end of the vacation period — which means I need to take a few days off afterwards just to rest a bit. Remember, she does nothing the whole year, so she has lots of energy for those few days!

Of course, now she’s so ill, she won’t be able to stick to that routine. Also, on the place we’re going, there is not much to see. Or, rather, there is, but it requires travelling a lot, and she is not so fond of that — for her, “driving” is a necessity to be able to go shopping for food, but not something one does for pleasure.

It was then that I remembered my wife’s promises from last year. Well, this was the perfect occasion: being stuck in a place where nobody knows us and where there is nothing to do. What could be better for some crossdressing vacations? 🙂

See, that’s quite something to look forward to, and naturally my expectations were raised. So much, in fact, that I dealt with them my making a long list of all that could go wrong before the departure date.

Firstly, my wife was almost forced to accept the generous offer from her own mother. She was in a foul mood about that and vented it off on her mother, until I told her to stop: her mother, after all, was just doing what she felt to be a kindness. She noticed the other day how constantly tired I was, and gladly forfeited her own vacations to allow us to go in her place instead. It would be quite unpolite to complain and grumble constantly about it and refusing to go, claiming “there is nothing there to do” and so forth, which made her mother almost regret her generousity — which is something quite bad to do. Very, very reluctantly, she negotiated to shorten the stay from 7 to 5 days, but that didn’t stop her from complaining all the time. The irony is that when my own parents invite us over to their place up in the highlands she is always eager to go! (I can’t crossdress there, even if my parents are not present, because it’s a small hamlet where people are constantly entering each other’s homes without announcement — such a pity, because it’s a huge place, and it even has a secluded backyard. The problem, of course, is that everybody knows us…)

So she tried first to convince her sister to come with us, too, which would obviously spoil my plans. But this didn’t work out — her sister would be working during those days. Her last attempt to ruin everything was a few days ago, when she felt so ill that she was going to tell her mother that all plans were off, she wasn’t going. I remember that I just smiled and said that I’d go on my own instead, which baffled her for a while, and then she did what she usually does when something goes against her plans: she simply forgot everything. The day of our departure is getting nearer — around March 15, if I’m not mistaken — and I’m almost sure she has forgotten it, and will, at the last possible moment, tell her mother that she had forgotten it and made other plans, so she cannot go.

Well, I have no idea what will happen, or if she actually managed to get her mother to cancel everything (she might have done so without telling me anything). What I did not tell her is that I expect to crossdress when we’re down there at the holiday apartment, and that I also expect her to stick to her word about the promises she made the other year. I know it’s bad of me, but I’ll do that at the last possible moment, and hopefully on a day where her mood is not as bad as usually. Otherwise, I know she’ll have plenty of time to cancel everything. But on the other hand, right now, I have no way to know if we’re going or not. I have this idea that she might already have told her mother to cancel everything and neglected to tell me about it, but I don’t know for sure. If I raise the subject, she might still be able to cancel things. If I remain silent, the due date may arrive, and then she will have no way to avoid it — and I can just say that either she comes with me, or stays at home, it will be her choice. And of course I’ll tell her that I intend to crossdress all the days we’re down there. My initial plans were to crossdress fulltime, but now I might be willing to discuss that. After all, I have no idea what to expect, and it’s likely that on the first and last day, while we’re travelling, and need to talk to whoever has the key to the apartment, crossdressing might not be an option. I also have no idea if this apartment is always the same one that my mother-in-law uses, or if it’s a different one everytime, and I surely don’t want to embarrass her if someone sees me as Sandra. So there are a lot of variables to deal with, and the best I can hope for is to be able to dress for three of the five days, and only doing that in the evening. But, who knows? There are simply too many loose ends to tie.

It’s all those imponderables that make me realize how stupid it is to rely upon expectations. I simply have no way to figure out the future. It’s pointless to plan. I tentatively give the whole operation some 10% of chances of success, but that’s just based on how often my wife thwarts everything — but, this time, there are even more variables to take into account. The likelihood of going, at this point, is perhaps 50%. The likelihood of my wife turning back on her word and forbid me to crossdress is about 90%. Well, make that 99%; I know her pretty well by now. She will not even bother to give an excuse for having thought otherwise — I’m pretty sure that her promises were based on a very reasonable assumption that we would never have any money for vacations, and so there was little risk that I would ever put her word to the test. And, finally, not knowing the place we’re going, I cannot foresee how easy it will be to crossdress full-time there.

In my days of crossdressing in hotels, I could make better choices, like picking up apartment hotels with independent exits and so forth, where I could slip out unseen. But in this case I don’t even know what kind of “apartment” this is. I’m assuming it’s some kind of time-sharing solution on a big building full of nosy neighbours. But the truth is that I have no idea.

And being pretty much clueless about everything, it’s pointless to plan ahead. After all, if I cannot plan something simple like getting dressed either on Monday or Tuesday, because there are so many variables beyond my control, how can I possibly expect to pull off my “crossdressing vacations” successfully? To be honest, 10% is rather very, very optimistic. 0% of chances is much more realistic. And, as such, I’m learning to deal with my expectations once more. Also, the more complicated the plans, the more likely they will fail. Specially when the easiest plans are prone to fail, and I experience that every week.

Today, to be naughty, I spent 24 hours in a bra, just to see if she cared (or noticed) — no comments so far. Sure, I’m not wearing the breastforms, so it’s not much noticeable…

  • Claudia Silva

    Dear Sandra,
    Wish all the luck in the world for your future crossdresser holidays!
    Don't be so pessimistic planning them, desire them as if they were a dream come true. A bit of dream is useful now and then you know, especially for someone that unfortunately is used to cope with unexpected events that force them to be cancelled. Nevertheless, the least I can do is wish all the best in the world to the author of my favourite blog. It is always worth waiting for your new posts. They are true reflections about our crossdress world, and I'm pretty sure each and one of us girls always find some related issue within our own lives.
    Beijinhos
    Claúdia Silva

    • Thanks, Claudia! Sometimes I still believe that some of the issues I face are absolutely boring…

      As for the hope for crossdressing holidays… I don't know. The nearer the date approaches, the less I believe it will become true. My wife hasn't said a single word about it, and neither did her mother last weekend. I was at least expecting a short comment, a hint on where we pick up the keys for the apartment, something like that. Nothing. This Saturday will be the last one before the supposed holidays. If the silence continues, I have to assume that everything's off…

  • Erin

    You GOOOO Girl, god i HATE how she puts you through all this STRESS !!!!!! She is the ultimate in selfish not letting you even do what she promised, grrrrr, i just want to scream out loud, loud enough for her to hear me calling her a BITCH !!!!!. God, it must be intolerable sometimes to have to deal with it, no wonder you are considering the paysites, i think i would be too, for some outlet of frustration against her evil wicked plan to defeat you. Kisses my darling, i will always be supportive of you, no matter what.

    • Heh. As I said before… I think that I make my wife look terrible on these posts. I believe she doesn't even notice what she's doing, and has no bad intentions. It just looks that way from my perspective.

      Still, she's fond of going back on her word on all things related to my crossdressing, that's certainly true. I think that she also believes that the more she discourages me, the more time passes, and, with enough time, I might give up any further attempts…

  • Erin

    You GOOOO Girl, god i HATE how she puts you through all this STRESS !!!!!! She is the ultimate in selfish not letting you even do what she promised, grrrrr, i just want to scream out loud, loud enough for her to hear me calling her a BITCH !!!!!. God, it must be intolerable sometimes to have to deal with it, no wonder you are considering the paysites, i think i would be too, for some outlet of frustration against her evil wicked plan to defeat you. Kisses my darling, i will always be supportive of you, no matter what.

  • Apparently the crossdressing holiday is off. This was some kind of promotion done by a tourism operator, and although the stay is free, when my mother-in-law tried to transfer the reservation in the name of my wife, they wanted to charge her for that. So she said to cancel everything, unless her mother could persuade the nice attendant to do it for free.

    This requires a bit of explanation: in Portugal, as in most of Europe, you cannot register anonymously for booking a hotel room — you need to provide a valid ID card or passport, which will be checked on registration. Yes, the Europol routinely cross-checks things 🙂 So criminals booking a room in their name are easily caught that way. The disadvantage, of course, is that there is no way to give friends a "gift reservation" which you have earned in your own name…

    • Hmm and it's on again! My mother-in-law just called, she managed to transfer the voucher for the hotel in my wife's name for free. Wow. Now that was utterly unexpected. I'm now very curious to see what my wife's reaction will be when I "announce" that I intend to do some crossdressing while on holidays…

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