Words of warning and welcome:

This is very much my blog, so don't be surprised if this doesn't follow accepted patterns and norms. Obviously it started out as a blog about my cross-dressing but it has developed a great deal since then. It is a place where I can be anonymous and honest, and I appreciate that.

It will deal with many things and new readers would do well to check out the New Readers' Page above this and the tag down there on the right. Although there's nothing too bad in here there will be adult language, so be careful. If you think this needs a greater control, please let me know. Thank you!

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

New Year Listings

It's 2019 and it's been a heck of a year in 2018.

I've not much to say this year. Unlike previous years. I can thank Leslie, again, for being a pillar of support once again and continuing to offer wise counsel. I hope that she knows just how much help she's provided and how much that has been appreciated in this last tumultuous year.

I can also add Lily to the list of helpful peeps this year and thank them for all the help that has been provided simply by having someone to give a virtual ear in times of high trouble and also providing things to be read throughout the year. These have provided a rare treat in terms of quality and diversion at points where, frankly, I needed that. Most especially when it looked like everything was actually about to go South rather than just painting things that way as I do.

Thank you, also, to Rhi, who does still stop by from time to time and deserves a shout out for continuing to be helpful and supportive and positive to other people far in advance of what she gets for herself from those people.

Honestly, the kindness of people that stop by here continues to make me embarrassed and impressed in equal measure. So thank you. Sincerely.

In terms of sites that I visited, things have been lean this year. The latter part of the year saw me transfer almost entirely to GetDare forums, where things were pretty good actually. It meant that I finally bit the bullet and got and wore a chastity device - still one of my best purchases of the last year - and met and talked with a number of highly decent and interesting people. Thank you that site.

Things are better than they were back in November (so long ago, right?). Still a long way to go, still more to murble about on this here blog. But recently I've been ill a bit and burned through that by drinking plenty of high class beer. Mmm, beer.

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Quantum Leaps

My story was about someone called
Anastasia Cable.

It was before Fifty Sheds of Grey was a
thing. Apparently, the knitting is an
Anastasia Cable Knit. And now you know.
Back in 2006 I undertook my first, and arguably last, NaNoWriMo. I say last, it was the last one I got to spend any time on, and the last I wrote the wordcount in a contiguous piece. It was the last one I enjoyed. In that year, one of my fellow writers wrote a rather funny little book (no, really) but it took a while to get going. The opening to that book seems appropriate, as does the TV show which was ripped off for that opening, so here it is:

Theorising that one could time travel within his own lifetime, Dr. Sam Beckett stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator and vanished. He woke to find himself trapped in the past, facing mirror images that were not his own and driven by an unknown force to change history for the better. His only guide on this journey is Al, an observer from his own time, who appears in the form of a hologram that only Sam can see and hear. And so Dr. Beckett finds himself leaping from life to life, striving to put right what once went wrong and hoping each time that his next leap will be the leap home.

This is not his story.

Although there are certain parallels.

And there are.


The Leap Home

No teesh Missus Tittlemouse, no teesh.

I have no tonsils.
There was illness, there was a bit of pain. Tilly and the littlest one were hit by tonsillitis. Somehow the elder two escaped (I have no tonsils) but Tilly had it bad and the small one couldn't keep food down. For around a week that was all that was happening. I'd work, come home, have the small one on my lap and so on. I think I may have spoken about this already. Anyway, upshot was that there was a hiatus in our discussions. Then, after a week and then into me feeling sick, Tilly inquired after me feeling unwell. I struggled to formulate a response and explained that I was not used to being asked if I felt well.

Tilly responded badly. This was a bad thing, you see, this was not who she was. She had learned how to be unsympathetic from me. I had broken her and she had then gone on to break me. It wasn't right that I was unclear about what to do because it meant that she was being uncaring and she had learned how to be uncaring from me a long time ago. We had, apparently, discussed this at the beginning of our relationship - my lack of sympathy was down to the way I was brought up and so she had learned from me how to not care about my illnesses as I did not care about her being ill. Clearly I had made a change recently, what with the tonsillitis and all, but it was only recently.

I am shit at playing games. I watch other people
play them on youtube. I wonder if there is an
extension of this metaphor to include that?
I pointed out that I was merely making an observation that I was used to being told that me mentioning feeling ill was 'going on about it' and that I did not really know what to do with her apparent concern, I was busy brushing it off. But, I conceded, I had to remember that, as with all things, it was my fault. I could bring things up, I said sarcastically, provided I remembered that it was all my fault. I got her message loud and clear.

Tilly got angry. She hit back.

Fine, I said, I was waiting for a decision and she still hadn't given it. I suspected that, in itself, was a decision.

There was a long pause.

Our lips touched!

We actually kissed on the lips!
Then she hugged me and offered an actual kiss. We went our separate ways. I get it, it's guilt. She doesn't like feeling guilty, who does, and that is why she lashes out and seeks to assign it elsewhere. Once I realised that it was easier to let her do it.

Later on that evening, Tilly approached me again. We would have to do many more such talks, she said, we had much to work through. And she would have to concede that she may not succeed, there was still the physical stuff (she shuddered) and that may not work. But she had made her decision: she could put up with my ASD. I pointed out that my ASD was part of the same Hydra as 'the physical stuff' and she would have to be ready to contend with that. Was she certain? Tilly said that she was. We hugged. She kissed me on the lips - first time in a long time - and we hugged some more.

Since then she has made a point of hugging more, offering kisses, and even inquiring after my day. We have, briefly, discussed the fact that it was she that stopped me sending what I thought were romantic texts on a morning (I would pull in on the way to work and tell her about the sunrise and liken it to her etc) because she was suspicious that they were not real, that no one actually felt that way. I pointed out that, well, I did.

Success?

The top of the pile here.

Not sure I have all three of the others... No
matter, there were four in the laundry, Tilly
just saw the top pair here.
Over the weekend, as my father and his wife were up (and we talked shop about latest developments in my relationship, I have been using my father and mother as sounding boards since early November), I had to do the laundry. Tilly saw a pair of knickers that I had hidden badly, as in not at all, and got shirty. Now, I was unaware she had seen anything. Not until later when she irritably told me she'd seen them and was angry about it. It was just another example of how hard it was going to be to trust me: she was under the impression that I'd stopped wearing knickers. I point out I'd said no such thing and that I had worn knickers as I'd run out of boxers. This was a lie. A bare-faced lie. Tilly called me on it but I remained firm.

Yes, I lie to Tilly about these sorts of things. Can't imagine why.

Tilly remarked upon trust again. But said that she was working on it, it was her issue, not mine, and something I shouldn't have to hide. I pointed out there was no 'should', I just did, for her and at her request. Another pause whilst child things happened. That is, we were called upon to be parents for a few hours. Oh, my father and his wife had gone.

When I first met Tilly, I would visit her in her flat.

Her underwear would festoon radiators in her house, and
most of it was... well, it was small knickers. Even thongs.

She'd get upset if I pointed this out or brushed them.

When I dry mine I hang them on the big dryers we have and I
hide them behind t-shirts and shirts and trousers. If you don't
know they're there, you won't see them. Because, as I recall,
seeing them just made her irrationally angry.

In that sense, I suspect nothing has changed. But I'm doing well
because Tilly didn't know I was wearing them.
Then she confronted me again. I shouldn't lie to her, she began, it was the lies that were the problem. Much to-ing and fro-ing about this from me: what did she mean? Did she want me to announce when I was or was not wearing knickers? Tilly: what about all those times I had proclaimed no knickers when pointing out what difference underwear made (she's right, about 50% of the time I was lying)? Was it just when she spotted them? What? Tilly got angrier and angrier, why couldn't I just be honest in the narrow area she was allotting and then, just, lie by omission? I pointed out that she was the one that had said lying by omission was just as bad and had also told me to lie better because what she didn't know didn't hurt her. Yes, agreed Tilly, I was right, why couldn't I do that? Because it was impossible to do both. And that, argued Tilly, is why she can't trust me.

We paused, I bit back the part about this being a bit unfair and something of a trap from which I could not escape. She set the boundaries and then complained that the boundaries meant I lied to her. I said nothing and just waited. Again, it's guilt. I get it.

Fine, she spat angrily, it was about how I shouldn't have to hide all this from her. She appreciated what I was doing, she understood it was for her, and that I wasn't going to stop. Fine. I shouldn't have to lie. If she asked, could I tell the truth? And, if she didn't ask, could I just not say anything? Don't ask, don't tell.

I warily agreed.

Yay for Boy vomit!
We hugged again. She didn't want me to be in a position where I had to hide things from her, she said, finally, her anger dissipated. But then we were interrupted, literally, by the Boy being sick. And so ended Sunday, day something of this saga.

And that's been it. I've been on the sofa again for a couple of nights whilst the Boy recovered from what we suspect was food poisoning and I've been struggling (and failing) to keep up with work as I count down the days until the end of term and some holidays. Things seem... well, if not positive, they have moved a little in a positive direction. We are in a better place, it would appear, than we were at the end of October.

Don't get me wrong, I think this is good. I just... I just wish each move wasn't accompanied by the anger and the vitriol and the blaming me and the lashing out. I get she gets to a better place if I just let her get on with it, but I feel like I'm being used as a punchbag in the meantime and it's hard. Also, it still makes me feel stupid to talk about all of the positives so soon after hitting the panic button. There's a reason I shared the anecdote about not running away from home. That kind of shit is hard-wired into me now, and, well, I feel stupid.

Not sure how I'd pass...
Inamongst all of this, I spoke to my mother. Initially I rang to let her know that there had been a positive move in the relationship, my mother has been touching base with me every couple of days since I first told her around the 7th or so of November, and has been praying for us etc. She is of the opinion that Tilly is odder than I and that I am not autistic. I love my mother, I do, but she is strange sometimes. Anyway, I had also told her, again, that I was a cross-dresser. I called the fact that she did not remember the first time. Anyway, she wanted to understand better, she said, and asked if I wanted to go out dressed. I think she was asking how far I want to take it? I answered truthfully, yes but I didn't think I could pass, along with affirming that I don't wear women's clothes - they're mine.

So... an eventful couple of weeks.

Saturday, 1 December 2018

You know my weaknesses

I was reminded recently of an episode from my youth. I had an argument with my parents, I would have been about 7 or 8, and I threatened to leave home. It must have been bad, my parents essentially said: "go on then." So I tried. But I was 7 or 8. I packed clothes and toiletries, a couple of cars, and then walked out of the house. No one stopped me. I walked down the street. Nothing. But I had nowhere to go. No mobile phones, no way of letting anyone know I was coming, and no one who would take me in without asking questions. I didn't have close enough friends to stop at their place - none of their parents would look after an extra child. I had no income. My bank account book was still in the house, my parents kept it for me, so I couldn't even access my savings (would have been a couple of hundred at the time). In the end, about half an hour, I had to go back.

My parents initially did nothing. When I raised it, they laughed. Should have planned better, they said, don't make threats you can't keep. Also, they pointed out how silly I had been, I was a child, I couldn't run away. I'm sure they were attempting some form of parenting psychology. What I learned, however, was that my feelings on a matter were irrelevant. No one ever said they were glad I hadn't gone. My emotional blackmail had failed.

It prepared me well, I suspect, for my current situation.

The family went to Birmingham for a night to visit Tilly's friend for a day. They had a lot of fun. I, meanwhile, watched a couple of films and fell behind deadlines at work because I am struggling. The weekend is busy, plans to meet up with Sierra and Pik and their children today if Tilly isn't ill again, and thus I fall further behind. No more discussions, some more hugs, still no word on the decision of whether Tilly can live with my ASD approach to romance and relationships enough to actually try having a physical dimension. Is she actively hoping it will go away? Probably. Who knows?

Tuesday, 27 November 2018

To Live To Love

I was partially planning an update, all about where things are and what has and has not changed. To put my mournful style into context with ruminations on my lack of luck with love-related matters - perhaps my ASD has always preyed on me and my dealings with women to the extent that the current situation is, indeed, the best I can get.

But then Tilly actually brought it up. By going through the medium that my brother and I are both irreparably broken when it comes to birthdays and Christmas, and how hard that is for her and my brother's wife and how it is likely down to my mother and how angry that makes her; via a detour through how much I suck the joy from all gatherings and occasions, with a stop-over at how much I ruined last Christmas with our deep and meaningful about my diagnosis and subsequent decision(?) to wear underwear - not so named but hinted at strongly - Tilly admitted that she was winding herself up.

What if we couldn't kick-start our relationship again? What if we tried to be physical and she couldn't give a shit? That would end in divorce, so I had said, and that was terrible. It's not just the security, she says, but it is also is - because she wouldn't have that and asking for me to continue to support things would be unfair. Sooner or later she would lose the house and that would be the end of everything. I explained that my own planning was, if it came to that, I was prepared to work on the support so that she would at least have the house until the youngest was 14. My aim was 18, that might not happen, but I wasn't going to let decisions about our children we took together unravel because of that. Equally, I respected her too much to leave her in penury, at least until she had the time to find another relationship.

She hugged me. Said it was nice. Said it helped. She was winding herself up. Nothing more has been said.

Tilly is no closer. Sometimes she wants to end it all and sometimes she wants to make a change. She's scared of a divorce. That does rather suggest an overall direction, to be fair.

A Story

In the before times, when this blog was naught but a guilty idea existing in the future, there was a troubled young father. A child had been born and there had been ructions. He had been ejected unceremoniously from the recovery ward and his partner and new child, spending a fitful night away before being allowed back in only at 9am. In those hours the relationship between this young father and his partner had shifted in ways that the young father would only learn at his leisure many years later. For a start the partner, soon wife, had decided that she alone could shoulder the burden of the new child. She alone could be trusted. She was not supported, she was not respected. The young father was unaware of this.

Time passed. The young father went on a honeymoon and began to realise the extent of the change - no relations were enjoyed. His ideas were dismissed. Romance was dead. After a year or so the wife offered the chance of a second child, but both of them assumed that trying for a child would take maybe eighteen months. It took two days. Physical relations ended once more. Increasingly, the young father found that he could not devote time to his job. A search was mounted for a new one. He went back to the terrible Head of Department. So it was that the birth of the second child heralded more trouble and strife. Initially all was well, but the wife was suffering. Physically and mentally. On the birthday of the young father, now struggling with all of the housework in support, he assumed, of his wife, was met with a midwife. That midwife sternly told the young father that he must take time off work, that his wife needed counselling. Urgently. She needed him to "step up" and "take time off work" and "take more of a share of the housework."

The wife apologised, she didn't know how to ask. She was afraid the husband would say no. The husband was appalled, how would he say no to this? She was suffering PND, she was struggling, of course he would take time off. There were no extra jobs, he had been doing those, but he arranged travel to and from a place some 60 miles distant where the therapist his wife needed lived. It continued over summer during daylight hours, the father taking the children as long as possible on parks, walks, in the local church, playing hide and seek, stressing over his wife in therapy.

Work restarted. The therapy continued twice a week but not on weekends. The father was buffeted, his boss was unsympathetic. His evening disappeared in childcare and ferrying the mother to and from therapy on Tuesdays and Thursdays. On each journey back the wife quizzed the husband about his past and his upbringing. Attempting to psychoanalyse. The husband tried his best to politely turn these efforts down. The therapy was for his wife, focus on him was unfair.

He was accused of not supporting her: physically or emotionally. He was not washing the pots properly. The pet needed to be cared for, after the wife was in bed, for an hour a night regardless of issues. He had the eldest to care for from the moment he arrived home, no later than 5pm, until an ill-defined point in the evening between 7pm and 9pm. The husband began to feel the strain. He did not ask his wife about her day. He did not listen to her answers. He did not say enough in conversations, he was not listening unless he responded with potted summaries and agreement with new and different information. But not too much. The wife demanded he listen quietly, offer no solutions, not interrupt, but not sit in silence. Normal people would know what to do. Conversations flared and died. No one asked about the young father's day, no one cared about the work piling up. That he worked to midnight and beyond was simply further evidence that he did not care about his family.

Then summer rolled around once more. By now his Head of Department was in open warfare. The young father had struggled. Energy drinks were consumed at work. Stress caused him to cry in the face of his wife, who reacted with anger and disgust - what kind of man cried in front of his wife? She wanted nothing to do with it. He must understand that such behaviour made her fear for her children, this was not normal, did he want her to leave? It was scary for her.

The holidays. The young troubled father revealed his cross-dressing, knickers to a grandmother's birthday, to his wife. She explodes. She reveals that her therapy sessions had cracked the PND, were beginning to deal with the trauma of her childhood and the death of her grandparents. But now all of that is lost, derailed, because she has to discuss the father's disgusting habit instead. The therapist tells her that the father is unlikely to change. She is disgusted. Bible verses follow. Urging to get it sorted or leave. Reminders that if it is kept secret there must be a reason. This explains everything. His lack of support, his lack of love, his inability to respond.

The years of Hell begin. And the blog starts that December, using incidents from the October to November.

And thus, in this way, a story is completed.

Tuesday, 20 November 2018

A Record

We started the Discussion. We seemed to go a ways, seemed to be talking about physical intimacy again, how she was self-conscious, how we might 'roll-start' the engine of our physical intimacy. But. There was always a but. But, physical intimacy couldn't happen until we could spend time together, talk in an engaged fashion. Okay, how do we do that?

We don't.

Okay, but how do we do that?

Well, I must understand how hard I am to live with. How hard it is to try and make any kind of connection with, well, my aspie-brain.

Okay, what am I doing wrong, what do I need to fix?

That therapy she did, way back before this blog began, 2010-11, that was actually about me. About her frustrations at being unable to connect. About living with a block of wood. Yes, she was trying, cack-handed, to psycho-analyse me in the car after every session, to probe what it was that made me broken. She does not recall saying what she did then was to punish me, maybe that was her trying to hurt me.

Oooookaaay. So what do we do now?

Maybe there's nothing that can be done. We don't share interests. I have nothing to talk about with her. There's always something that gets in the way, always an obstacle.

But... you put them there.

Yes, because of how hard it is to live with different brains. She said she didn't want to end it, though she's thought about how maybe she should fifty million times since then, and since then there hasn't been any move to do anything.

What am I missing? What haven't I done? My mother was down, sure, but...

There's always something, see? Always a reason. She's tired, she's got work to do, the youngest has been exhausting, she's organising stuff for the children, my mother is down. We're as bad as each other.

Okay, yes, but what was she expecting we'd do?

How does she know? How can she be expected to know? Here, why don't we play a game of chess, during which she will complain about how she's not getting work done and try to explain how she can't win with two rooks (because that's not a combination you can win with against a king and pawn, why won't I ever take her at face value? Why will I never just accept what she says?) and how our youngest is now awake and how much time we wasted when she needs to do things for her online work. Yes, okay, fine, she'll take me up on my offer of looking after the child whilst she gets her urgent work done. Don't expect her to be happy about it. Long silence. She's sorry. She doesn't want the aspie-ness to be what ends our relationship. She doesn't want it to be like that.

Sleep comes. The morning. The second day.

Thursday, 15 November 2018

Confirmation

I love me a bit of battenburg.

Tilly is not a fan. She'd rather gouge out her eyes than eat it.
When I started this place in 2011 it was because I could not discuss things with Tilly. I wanted somewhere to explain what I was feeling, explore what I was doing and, if necessary, find answers. The initial question, where does this leave masculinity and me, was added after reading other blogs and to try and give this place something to chew on. Indeed, my explorations have always been less about masculinity and femininity than they have been about what I enjoy and why. They have been an attempt to understand things better.

Earlier in the week, Tilly said that she had come to the decision that she didn't want to jack everything in, not yet. She didn't know if there was a chance of things getting better but the lack of desire to end everything was a positive, right? She bought me flowers and a battenburg cake yesterday just because and has initiated more hugs since then than I think she's done since we last had sex.

Mt Rainer, like many things, casts a long shadow in an
unexpected way.
But the conversation, the need for it, hung over everything. Tonight she said she was aware of this, unprompted (though I was going to raise it). She does not see how that conversation can have a positive outcome and admitted that she was scared of it all ending. She always had been. The long pauses, the fact that we keep going round in circles, she was just very good at avoiding things. She doesn't want to have the conversation. I can understand that, but I don't think it has been healthy. Unlike her, I do not see her avoidance of it for the last seven years as in any way healthy or helpful, nor something laudable or praiseworthy - she does. Most couples, she said, when one partner raises problems last no longer than a year before either solving it or ending. She, she said proudly, had managed far longer than that. There's wiggle-room, but I think the problems were the lack of physical connection and I think the partner referred to was me, I may be wrong.

And so I wait.