The After Dinner Blues: The Undress and Grief
In the last year, I have had the privilege to meet many people who are bi-gendered. Mostly male to female, I dine with a group who meet at the same restaurant once a month. They are dressed, perfumed, perfectly made-up, and socializing with the affect and vibrancy of the women they carry within their biology.
The invitation to be part of their intimate journey has shown me their joy when they transform their look from male to female and the grief when they must undress her to enter back into the discomfort of the daily act. At the beginning of the evening, everyone is chatty, drink in hand, laughing, smiling, commenting on attire, make-up and just so happy to be out. Yet, as the evening gets closer to its end, the chit-chat wanes, the calm and joy slowly fade, as the pall of grief begins to surface.
Through the looking glass of transformation, it starts in their eyes and moves tenuously through their bodies. Walking a bit more stiffly, the elegance with which they swayed is now tempered by the resilience it takes to go back into the world as him and not her. The crisis of the soul is what causes the grief to surface. They face having to live a second life that is secret and discrete. As the sun sets and they go into the shadows of the night, they return home to wives or significant others, anxious and sad and perhaps a bit relieved. Relieved that they once again were able to mask what they have been doing. The grief involves the depth of sadness and anxiety that are aroused when she must go publically dormant. Becoming her relieves stress and anger as she steps into a power that is not honored or felt by him.
The next time you look into the eyes of someone who is struggling between two worlds, understand that you are seeing someone masking the complexion of their grief. The picture of being found out remains coursing through their brains even though they are compelled to honor who they dishonor throughout their days or weeks or years of living with two parts: the male and the female.
We thank Edy for being a guest blogger on the Femme Fever blog.
You can visit Edy Nathan’s website by visiting, www.edynathan.com and for those of you who sign up for her newsletter you will receive a free mediation via email. So be sure to take advantage of that opportunity!
You can also visit Edy Nathan’s Center for Sex Therapy at, centerforsextherapy.com