What Kind of Woman are you?
(This was originally written in an email of advice, based on my observations from conversations with hundreds of transgendered people. It's addressed to a male-to-female crossdresser but the essence applies to anyone...)
What kind of woman are you?
As a woman, who are you? For some crossdressers, their womanhood is nothing but a hidden, sleazy corner of themselves, cut off from their relationship with God, cut off even from the rest of humankind. Without God's influence - without even a human friend to be ashamed before - it goes rotten. If your womanhood is nothing more than an expression of a man's libido, it becomes an ugly and false caricature of womanhood; a slut, basically, a creature more common in the imaginations of men than in actual women. As a woman, you've got to be more and better than that.
As a woman, do you show your face to God? As a woman, do you belong to Him? Are you a Christian woman? When you know Whose you are, it gives you power to control your (real or imaginary) behavior. If you turn that face to God and praise Him, you'll want to be someone you can respect. You'll want to be pure. You'll hunger and thirst for righteousness. And knowing that you are Christ's reminds you to call His power into your life constantly. If you shut God out of your womanhood, if you don't invite His presence and power to fill you as a woman, then you're sunk; your womanhood will degenerate into nothing more than a catchall for the parts of yourself you despise. But if you make your womanhood a vessel for Him... glory!
Try living with a constant awareness that you are God's, especially as a woman. If it's difficult, try make a ritual of some sort for yourself: one favorite Bible verse before putting on mascara, a prayer before blush, and so on. If you have a good opportunity to publicly worship as a woman, it can be an extremely positive experience. Some people have even found that renewing their baptism under their preferred name helps them. What can you do to ensure that the bond between you and God is as strong, or stronger, when you are a woman? Be creative.
As a woman, do you have friends? If there are any friends you can share this with, even if only by telling them in words - it could help. Friends whose faith and behavior you can respect. It's another way of grounding yourself in spiritual reality and avoiding being just a sexual fantasy. If you have friends Jennifer and Kate, and they know of your womanhood, then they are in a sense present with you. You can ask yourself: Should Jennifer's friend act this way? Kate's? Would she sleep around? I value their friendship; shouldn't I be (in thoughts and deeds) someone they can respect?
Another thought: validation. We have a society that basically tells women they are primarily valuable as sex objects. So imagining yourself as a successful sex object can be one way of trying to validate your womanhood. Obviously, not a healthy way! Again, being close to God and to friends as a woman can help you avoid feeling starved for validation.
Don't just be a woman; be a Christian woman. It will help to have a clear idea of Christian womanhood. Look for saints to help model yourself after; official and unofficial saints; the kind you read about in books, and the kind you find around you in your daily life. People you truly admire, people you can honestly say you want to be, so that vision will draw you onward and upward. Don't let your darkest thoughts steer your development; know what you want to be.
Again, this ties into resisting the World's image of womanhood. The mass media constantly shows us women who have sexual attractiveness going for them, and no other virtues; they tell us that these are the women we should admire and emulate. That's garbage. But is it any wonder we have trouble forming a healthy image of womanhood when an unhealthy one is constantly blared from every TV and billboard? This same problem torments born-girls and women, too. You need to resist that message and find better women to admire.
Who are you?
Whose are you?