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Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Lighter makeup routine for more regular girl about town


When I went out last week I got away, for the first time ever, with just one coat of foundation and powder. Previously, I used to use an orange base coat to cover beard shadow and then two to three layers of oil-based foundation and powder. As well as hiding beard shadow this also reduces shine and bleaching from camera flash (a tip from the Boudoir). Oil-based foundation also stays on if a TGirl perspires (which can happen any time with a wig on, even in winter), and is certainly a problem I have had with water-based foundation on hot days.

My natural hair colour is a very dark brown so not even the closest shave could hide it. But I have realised that my chin hair is no longer brown but turning grey. Although a sign of ageing, it certainly makes life easier when applying makeup. To avoid any flareups of eczema in my sensitive eye area I am not currently wearing eye makeup or mascara. I wear glasses anyway so eye makeup is partly hidden and therefore not worth doing to impress. Instead I have always concentrated on having nice lipstick. This means that my entire makeup routine now takes about 20 minutes, as opposed to nearly an hour in the old days of heavy-duty cover.

And that means that I can much more readily put my face on and go out more spontaneously. New possibilities are opening up. On Sunday, despite the snow, and today, when it was pouring, I put on my face and went out for long local walks. It’s not that I’m attracted to foul weather, but that’s just when I happened to have a spare hour or two. Anyway, I’m waterproof! But the idea was to test and see how my face is tolerating a more regular use of makeup. The answer so far seems to be: pretty well.

Here’s me today in local woodland.

"I care not for the rain, not I" (Jerome K Jerome, Three Men in a Boat)
 
Sue x

Sunday, 21 January 2018

First foray of 2018


Anyone who is in any way transgender will know the yearning to be properly oneself, to present in the gender that one feels applies and be treated as such. Although I have been very restricted in my feminine life because of this incurable eczema that has affected my face since 2014, I haven’t stopped being trans, haven’t stopped desiring to be female and be treated as a woman. I’ve had to revert to most of my presentation in public being male again, despite all the progress in living as a woman I had made up to when my eczema suddenly came and prevented my wearing makeup.

On Thursday I needed to buy something from a specific shop in Kingston-upon-Thames in South West London, which is a big shopping town. But whilst lugging my purchase back to the station I saw so many delightful things in the boutiques that I knew I had to return as myself, Sue.

So that evening, which is the late night shopping evening there, I went back in my female guise and had a pleasant few hours buying for myself. I enjoyed a naughty slice of chocolate cake in a café and particularly appreciated being addressed as Madam by a handsome young male assistant in John Lewis.

What did I buy? A handbag to match my coat and a belt in H&M, some new knee-length black leather boots in M&S as my beloved old pair are worn out (I appreciated the excellent sale price, too!) and plain opaque tights from John Lewis (I want to try their range). I also got some more Studio Tech foundation from Mac, which is my foundation of choice right now as it isn’t having anything like the severe effect on my skin of the oil-based foundations I used in the past.

It’s so nice just doing everyday things in one’s true gender, like taking the local train, sitting in a café, browsing in shops. When you can live life as your true self, however mundane it is, then you know happiness. I’d been missing that happiness a lot.

Sue x

Saturday, 13 January 2018

Endings and beginnings

January is named after the Roman god Janus, who presided over the start and end of things, over comings and goings, and therefore of contracts, ventures, birth and death, and of transition. He is often depicted with two faces looking in opposite ways. I wonder if trans people in ancient Rome prayed more especially to him.

Author: Loudon dodd


These last couple of weeks I have been chucking out all sorts of stuff that's no longer needed and has been cluttering the place up. I think there'll be more items of clothing going to the charity shop, too.

A lot of the paperwork I'm throwing out relates to bad times with a former employer, whom I eventually had to sue. It's 15-20 years old and would be time-barred for further legal action, so it's time to get rid of it and hope to leave all that awfulness in the past. This includes the "MJ Papers", named after a deranged female boss of mine against whom I had to bring charges of harassment, including sexual harassment. It's best not to reveal her name here, but the first letter of MJ stands for Mad. What an awful experience that was! And exhausting to deal with. People with personality disorders can cause complete havoc but the main problem with them is that it's a real effort to gather evidence and make a complaint that's robust enough to make headway, as with the criminal charges against teachers at my school that I have written about before.

This week I have witnessed yet more trans-on-trans abuse against a nice person who organises broad-church trans events from various prima donna transsexuals who claim that only surgically altered trans women are entitled to consideration and that all other persons who display gender variance are merely men who play at women just as a kink and their existence is highly damaging to the true transsexual. The accusation is quite common but always delivered very nastily and I believe it stems from Narcissitic Personality Disorder. I've realised that one of the girls I've been hanging out displays much behaviour that is symptomatic of NPD and I've had to block her from my social media and phone (she kept ringing at all times - during work hours, small hours of the morning, etc.) She wouldn't be the first I've had to block. What people!

Of course, there's the usual anti-trans attacks from elsewhere, including one favourite site of mine that's got new management and immediately was slapped by the ombudsman for suddenly requiring contributions from natal females only: "If you were born with a penis," went their charming and friendly notice for 2018, "then you are not a women and should not post here no matter how you feel". They had to retract that, so a small victory there.

On a more positive note, I am feeling more feminine again and my face has shown no major signs of disorder for a long time so I think a few trips out may well be made very soon.

Also positive is the fact that a little nephew of mine who is into online gaming, manga comics and Japanese productions, likes to play female characters (including one who looks like a chubby librarian in skiwear - I can relate to that!)


He was very curious to see so many men dressed as female characters at the Hyper Japan show last year (unbeknown to him, some of them are trans, such as my fabulous friend Helena Love who creates some stunning costumes). I am on a recruitment drive so I shall watch this development with interest.

Sue x



Sunday, 31 December 2017

Review of 2017


Well, it’s the last day of the year and that means… it’s time to review my fem life this past year. The review of 2016 was one of the most popular posts on my blog so maybe you’ll like this one, too.

Life itself has been exceptionally difficult and so the days I managed to get out and about and be treated as Sue were precious. I forgot to write up about some of those events so this post is not a repeat of the past.

I went out with Sarah in February for a day out in London (http://suerichmond.blogspot.co.uk/2017/02/another-day-out.html), a day’s shopping in March (http://suerichmond.blogspot.co.uk/2017/03/and-out-again.html) and met up with the Brick Lane girls later that month (http://suerichmond.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/the-old-familar-faces-and-happy-routine.html). But I didn’t write up about meeting up with Gina in April. Gina’s popped up from time to time in my posts over the years and she contacted me as she was spending a weekend in London.

We met in Greenwich for the Star Wars exhibition at the O2 (the Millennium Dome as was). This was chiefly a display of props, models and costumes from the films, and in that respect was rather special.





But to pad it out you developed your own character, choosing species, psychology, role, etc. I ended up as this critter:



Fighter pilot, female (oh yes, believe me).


After a bite to eat we saw the last of the tall ships that were sailing downriver, some on their way to Canada apparently. It’s an annual regatta. 




And we went up the hill to the observatory, too. A nice day with a nice friend.



One evening in June I met up with my lovely friend Steph whom I hadn’t seen for years and we enjoyed dinner together in Chinatown. We had no idea what this flower-decorated car was all about but obviously it was a photo opportunity!



July, of course, was Sparkle (http://suerichmond.blogspot.co.uk/2017/07/sparkle-2017.html), when it was so good to meet up with old friends and make new ones and take part in such a massive event.

October saw a gathering of girls in London for lunch (http://suerichmond.blogspot.co.uk/2017/11/absent-friends.html), which was a nice little meet-up in old haunts.

A lot of the time I have spent in more androgynous mode, especially on holiday (see October). I have been pretty devastated by last year’s news from my doctors that there isn’t a cure for the eczema that has ravaged my face since 2014, and although I have been able to change my makeup so that there is now little serious effect, it has made me consider the possibility of presenting nominally male but feeling and looking a little more female. It’s not really me, though, as my femininity is important to me, as is being treated as female, so just wearing women’s clothing doesn’t satisfy. However, I did manage to have several worthwhile and desperately needed short breaks at last, to Lille in France, to Germany, to Wiltshire and Somerset, and to Prague with Sarah.

As for next year, 2018, I am hoping that I will be able get out more now that I have, I hope, a little more time and a new makeup regime that doesn’t seem to cause my face to flare up.

Here's my avatar for next year.

 

Thanks for reading and let me wish you a happy, prosperous and fulfilling 2018.

Love

Sue x



Sunday, 24 December 2017

Seasons Greeting

Wishing all my readers a very happy holiday time.

We all need a winter festival in the darkest days of the year, whether it be Christmas, Yule, Hanukkah or other. In the last few years that I have worked for myself at home and have to close the curtains at about quarter past three on December afternoons, I tend to put up a Christmas tree early in December as well as other lights and decorations or it would be too gloomy.


My tree fairy

I'll be spending Christmas Day with a sister (not the Anti-Lugbutt one) and Boxing Day will be my usual alternative Christmas at home with a nice dress on and my favourite food.

Hope you have a good break

Sue x


Sunday, 3 December 2017

Christmas shopping

The last post was a very serious one so here's something lighter.

I don't have a big family so Christmas shopping is actually quite quick and easy, and not too expensive either since some people only want nominal gifts. I confess I usually give myself a little treat, too, traditionally a pair or two of fancy tights. But this year I've bought myself another bottle of my favourite perfume, Versace Crystal Noir.

In the last few years I've also put up a Christmas tree in early December. Now, traditionalists will be shocked: when I was a kid, the tree went up on Christmas Eve and came down on January 6th, after Twelfth Night. But now I prefer to call it my Winter Tree because ever since I started working for myself in my own home, I find that having something bright and cheerful in the room for 2-3 weeks before and after the winter solstice makes all the difference to my mood. There are only about six hours of proper daylight here and the winter grey is desperately gloomy otherwise.

I also wonder if it's time to buy a new frock. (Hey, isn't it always time for a new frock?) Boxing Day is when I have time to myself and it's nice to dress up smartly, which is never an option on Christmas Day with family. I'm thinking red this year. Let's see what I can find in the shops.

I hope your Christmas preparations go well.

Sue x


Monday, 27 November 2017

Historic child abuse update


Three years ago I wrote about the appalling abuse that went on at my school. Since writing, there have been several successful prosecutions of teachers who sexually abused children or who downloaded child porn – including sick torture porn. And several unsuccessful prosecutions, including one slippery character who seems to avoid jail every time he is taken to court. I think witnesses feel too intimidated to give evidence.


This post is not going to be any easier.

The local education authority has written to ask for help with their enquiry to prevent such problems arising in future. But in my view not only will this do nothing to cure the problem (which has been going on for over 50 years at that place) but it’s just another way of the authorities saying something has been done when, in fact, nothing substantial will have been done at all. Lone wolves will still be predators and, when caught, the school authorities will close ranks and cover their behaviour up again, probably more so as they can’t afford a second scandal.

In parallel, the national investigation into historic abuse by senior figures, especially politicians, is constantly experiencing delays and difficulties and has run through no end of chairmen without getting very far. I suspect the powers that be will kill it off eventually. The Prime Minister is being accused in some sections of the press of orchestrating a cover-up. There is never anything really resembling justice in any of this. Most of the perps are dead for a start.

As ever, the emphasis in all this is on sex, but sexual abuse is actually one manifestation of the abuse of power and not directly about sex. Puritan sexual mores are still a British obsession. My complaint – and that of many of my peers – is about the violence and abuse we were subjected to, of which inappropriate sexual behaviour was a part (though undeniably the worst part). Children as young as 9 kicked and punched and slapped, heads banged on walls and against each other, their clothes ripped by teachers. The evidence given in court regarding boys being subject to oral sex and sexual spanking rituals made me feel ill and angry.

Obviously, being transgender at a school for boys was especially hard, and I can think of a couple of other pupils in my time who might have been trans, too. In many ways it served to put me right off macho culture and when I went into higher education and there were girls there I felt a whole lot happier and more relaxed, although the absence of violence and abuse was the best thing.

Here are just three images from my time at school that are burnt in my mind and sum it up:-

- Aged 10, a teacher gets irritated with a boy and he is asked to stay behind after class while the rest of us go for the afternoon break. Ten minutes later the boy emerges, face twisted in agony, barely able to walk. He has been kicked in the shins so many times that he hobbles for days and has livid bruises for even longer.

- Aged 11, a teacher gets irritated with the boy next to me and slaps his face repeatedly and with such force that his nose bursts. I can still hear that loud crack of meaty adult fist on child flesh. This boy, incidentally, is the class bully, but I feel sorry for him. His father, also a teacher at the school, is the most evil man I have ever met; even after all these years, nobody has ever beaten him for malice, and I’ve met some nasty characters in my years. The dad did nothing but beat this boy at home with his belt. It seems that the boy had little to look forward to in life but brutality at home and brutality at school. No wonder he was a bully. I guess he reckoned that’s how you get on in life. But we all knew of his horrible existence and didn’t therefore hold his nastiness that much against him. It was as well to be able to fight, though, and once when he attacked me I replied with a left hook that knocked him down and became legendary. He certainly respected me after that. We had an uneasy friendship and, like I say, I felt very sad for him. I don’t know whether he has made good in life or has gone to the wall. Maybe it’s best not to enquire.

- Aged 13, a teacher gets his amusement each lesson by selecting a pupil to answer a question and then slaps that pupil's cheeks in turn until he gives the right answer. It hurt all right.

And on and on and on and on, not to mention the sarcasm and verbal abuse as well, the constant, never-ending threats and random punishments. At least you could go home in the evenings. Well, all apart from those pupils who somehow are cajoled into teachers’ homes and rooms to be sexually assaulted. A longer description of this place is given in my earlier post.

One of the reasons I haven’t had kids myself is that I wouldn’t want someone, especially my own child, to go through that. The friends I’ve asked about their schools didn’t experience anything like this, though. That makes me doubly angry.

I doubt I will waste any more time talking to the authorities about this. It’s authority that is the problem in the first place, and with a current political situation here as deranged as it is I know that kids of the future are going to be brutalised as well. I am beginning to feel that conquering evil is impossible.

Sue x