As things we not getting solved with art and music, as well as some journaling and whatever else I could think of that would ease things without making any changes, it was time to start the train back up.
The next stop was to try cross dressing at home. This was a little tricky since my daughter P was home after graduation. However after talking this over my spouse and I came up with a bit of a strategy. They were going on a yearly vacation with my wife’s family and would be gone for the week. That left me time to try things out.
I travelled to one of the two “local” stores that catered to cross dressers. The proprietor J was a pillar of the cross dressing community and a very nice guy. He got me set up, some ok stuff, some really awful stuff, but it was a start. I went home with the unbearable high heels (long since discarded), the pocket bra and breast forms and what proved to be a decent synthetic wig.
I visited the other store and got a garter belt and stockings (I had a fascination with them) and a couple of tops. I had my “equipment”. I managed to purchase a small amount of makeup at a local supermarket, although I was so paranoid that I ended up using a self service checkout. I went late in the evening and that let me stare at the makeup a bit to figure out what I wanted.
I did my cross dressing, borrowing a bit from my spouse’s clothing, and it helped. I felt somewhat better, less dysphoric, and at that point I was still a bit turned on by the naughtiness of the whole thing. I suspect cross dressers always have that feeling, but it didn’t last long for me because I wasn’t a cross dresser.
A bit later I had a hiatus because I went off of my supplemental testosterone and for about a month I lost all sexual feelings and I also lost my dysphoria. A month or so later it was quickly coming back, and on the advice of my psych nurse I went back on T. As she said, not being on the hormone was putting me in an unnatural situation and I should be deciding based on being as normal as possible.
I went back on T at a lower dose. Instead of aiming for the midrange of the male range I cut the dose in half after talking with my doctor. A week or two later my dysphoria was back in full force. The train had to start up again.