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Self Defense En Femme

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    A self-defense primer…long…but very relevant to all TGs. Read it a bit at a time.

Nikki, the author of this thoughtful essay, is an Accomplished Martial Artist and personal trainer with a Degree in Sports medicine who specializes in Body Transformations available for One-on-one or Self-Defense/ Martial Arts. Call 201-888-7357  (She offers personalized training for you as a male or en femme)


It all starts off so innocently… You are off with friends dressed to the hilt in stilettos and a nice mini dress to show off all the work you’ve been doing at the gym, feeling great and loving your feminine self and your look! Friends start to peel off in different directions as the parking lot starts to empty. Last call for alcohol sounds up from the bartender. Where did the night go? Dancing and enjoying the night out dressed as the women you truly are inside…but wow, it’s late!

It’s almost 3am as you start to walk toward the exit feeling a little tipsy. Guess I shouldn’t have had that last glass of wine. Hmm, you wonder, was that guy there the whole time staring at you? You take a few more steps towards the door, and yes, he also steps towards you. For a moment panic creeps into your mind! Okay, remain calm, it’s fine…he probably just was walking in your direction. Now you stop and say good night to your bouncer friend and give a quick look over your shoulder as he exits the building toward the parking lot, which you notice has gotten extremely desolate and dark. I guess a few more of those lights must have burned out. The street seems eerily quiet except for the clicking of your stilettos on the pavement. But it’s only a few blocks more to the subway as you notice a drunk in an alley out cold. You stop for a second to reach for your metro card…but wait, what was that sound? The click-clack on the pavement is not yours. So who, then? The sound traveling like the vibration of a bass drum echoes in the quiet night and by the pale moonlight and the few working street lights you can barely see!

The subway is only 3 blocks away. You begin to quicken your pace as you move to a brisk walk and then a light jog, but so do the footsteps behind you. As you go faster so do they! You’re in a race to the subway sign. Now you’re in a full-out sprint. Your heart is palpitating and your stomach is in knots. Damn that last glass of wine! You reach the stairs and a rush of blood from your running warms your face as you breathe a sigh of relief. Then you freeze as the lights shine on your worst nightmare! It’s him, the staring guy from the club. As he walks across the street you quickly zip through the turnstile and head down the stairs. Again your pulse quickens and your mind starts to imagine all those horror movies you’ve seen since you were a kid. But you try to calm down by saying he probably won’t even take the same train. You hear the footsteps again down the stairs and walking in your direction. He begins to whistle and say, “Hey Momma, been waiting to get you alone all night! Do you know what a guy like me can do to a gurl like you?” Now what do you do? Ignore him and hope he leaves you alone? Run for the stairs and hope you can find a cop? Or do you just quietly wait to see what his next move is, confident that you have the skills and the understanding to handle the situation!

Self-defense is as much an understanding of your surroundings (who, where, and what) as it is analyzing the situation and devising a plan to protect yourself from harm. This seminar will include lessons on awareness, courage, conviction, and if need be combat! Most people in a dangerous situation will panic (as in the above scenario). But in most cases a person who is afraid has also lost the fight. Why? Because that person has lost their ability to think and reason. Now you may think that if your potential attacker is drunk or pumped up on drugs this gives the person an advantage. But actually their perception is impaired, their motor skills are decreased, and their balance is limited because the substances are limiting blood flow to the brain and changing the brain’s chemistry; therefore, their ability to handle complex motor and hand-eye coordination skills—fighting—is severely limited. Now maybe you won’t be so afraid when some loud mouth drunk screams across the room at you.

Now what can you do to protect yourself? That’s a complicated question with a simple answer. Don’t allow the above situation to happen to you by doing the following:

  1. Always have a plan with friends before you go out to a club, a bar, or a party. It sounds simple but does require a little thought. Decide ahead of time where to meet at closing time and all leave together. As the Warriors basketball team says, there is strength in numbers. Plus from a psychological point of view most attackers will look for an easy mark like the woman above.
  2. We have already alluded to it, but always go out with at least one other girlfriend (preferably more if possible).
  3. When people are staring at you don’t look down. It is a mental sign of weakness and fear.
  4. When traveling to a new area, locate and make a mental note of police stations and any 24-hour gyms, delicatessens, diners, or retail stores. They are good places to get help or escape.
  5. Purchase mace or pepper spray and keep it with you at all times! If your state does not allow it to be sold, then you can create a valuable weapon in your purse by keeping two rolls of quarters in a zippered compartment and using them to hit an attacker.

These are just a few smart things you can do to help yourself stay safe and protect your right to have a good time.

If you found this article helpful, then please share it with all your friends. Remember, knowledge is power only when it’s shared.

Thanks Nikki


Transgender Identity in Orthodox Judaism

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A moving personal video account by Je’Jae Daniels and how one identity suppresses the other. Ms Daniels is also a multi-media artists whose works are shown in the 2nd hyperlink

“My work is seen through the usage of many mediums and forms. The subjects that I tackle are varied but I have a special interest in the intersection of media, culture, and identity.”

Je’Jae Daniels
(Pronouns: They/Them)
Artist / Designer / Media Maker

A magic carpet ride in 2015 for one CDI lady

Reflecting on 2015, I feel like it was the most wonderful year ever for Allison. Here is a recap of my significant milestones and some high points.


  •      Attending First Event was an unbelievable start to my year. Events were great and I had a wonderful roommate! However, through several seminars, I was hammered by the realization that I needed to reveal Allison to family, friends and colleagues. My commitment to do so would make 2015 my coming out of the closet year.
  • Soon after that, my wife of 4 decades read ”She’s not There”, viewed Bruce Jenner’s interview, and processed things with me and my therapist.  Over the next few months, she finally understood my dysphoria and agreed to let me express Allison openly when we both retired. So over the next 6 months I prepared for my new life.
  • I became a regular attendee at CDI-CrossGender Community which gave me a place to belong, a community of non-judgemental friends, and yes, a place to serve.
  • In June, I was thrilled to be a bridesmaid at my longtime friends Betty and Mischa’s wedding.
  • And that summer, many wonderful days sailing on T Time with transgender friends and others
  • My wife and I retired on September 2nd and I had a wonderful coming out party at CDI.  I could dress at home before going out, found that my life-long struggle with toxic shame evaporated and felt so free to be me.
  • Over the next 3 months, I came out to my children, my church pastor and Elder Board, former colleagues and lifelong friends.  While not all embraced my transgendered self, I did clarify misconceptions and felt relieved that I was no longer hiding my identity.
  • Along the way, I discovered SAGE, an LGBT senior center in midtown where I took dancing and acting lessons and made new friends.
  • That led to a solo lip-synch performance of “Dance 10 Looks 3” (better known as “Tits and Ass”) from the Broadway show Chorus Line.  The venue was benefit variety show at a small theater in the Village. I got lots of encouraging feedback about my costume and performance.
  • In November, I was elected president of CDI, affirming a role I had played for several months.  We have enriched CDI’s programming with Trans themed Movie Nights, Dinners out, speakers and mini-lessons.and facility upgrades like a professional photography studio setup for photos.
  • And all year long my body slowly feminized and by December, I was thrilled to finally be filling a 36B bra. What a rush it is to have cleavage.

The journey continues for me and I count it a privilege to have friends like you to travel with me.


My First Dress

My First Dress

I wonder how many remember their first dress? I do and especially as it was nice looking and appropriate for my age in contrast to the many miss steps that followed. I saw it in a catalogue that has since disappeared, modeled by Cindy Crawford in the early days of her career. Of course it looked gorgeous on her and when I wore it I did as well – in my eye. It was a dark gray violet with dark polka dots. The fabric was a clingy rayon cut with a modest vee neck belted and falling to the knees, Unfortunately I have grown out of it! But how often can sixty some dollars make you feel like a super model, not often I would wager. The first of most things occupy a special place as does this dress.

Thanks Ann.

Halloween in Times Square

living one night a year as someone else

Wading through mobs of boisterous, costumed, Halloween millennials in Times Square , I was struck by the sameness of the disguises chosen by each gender. Females as gossamer-winged fairies, purring pussy cats, schoolgirls in Mary Janes and white knee highs; males as gladiators, pirates, and Indian chiefs. And, of course, many other personas. What struck me was a general choice of extreme gender expression: men as ultra-macho, women as super femme. Why might this be so ? Looking at women today (in NYC, at least), they often appear to be gender-neutered in their dress: such as utilitarian stretch pants, unflattering ankle-high booties or neon-colored running shoes, and so forth..a denial of the traditional attributes of the Fair Sex. Is it the androgynous, gender non-discrimination of the Digital Age..or the boring reality of anonymous work in ever-larger corporations ? Whatever the cause, today’s culture seems to repress gender individuality…and, thus, to downsize the time and the space in which to express the unique Boy or Girl within. So, sadly, just one night a year, these young folks let it all hang out. A sad situation !!

Which leads to the transgender world you and I inhabit. We are blessed !! Somehow, we have identified our (other) femme self..and, to a greater or lesser degree, we’ve let it happen: a lot more than one night a year. So..sit back..relax..and count your blessings !

Your comments are welcome !

Wearing Panties

  Wearing Panties
On 5/4/15 I started doing something that has changed my life.  On that day I started wearing panties under my work clothes, and have been doing it 24/7 since then.  Including wearing them to bed.  Even though I told her before hand, it took my wife a couple of days to realize I had started doing it.  While my wife is not thrilled with it, she does not want me to stop just to please her.  She realizes how much this is a part of me, and that I need to express it. Now that I have started, I never want to stop, and actually don’t think I can.  It has reduced my stress, is helping me lose weight, and made me more at peace with myself.  We watched the Bruce Jenner interview together, and she thought that is what started me wanting to wear panties 24/7.  However, I shared with her that I saw a video of an MTF surgery last summer, and when I saw the finished product my first thoughts were “my god, that is how I could look”, and “my god maybe that is how I should have been born”.  I also said that I always thought that I would never consider having that surgery, mostly because I liked having a penis too much, and thought that the surgery was mostly just cosmetic.  However, that watching that video changed my thoughts about it.  She was not surprised, and said that she always expected that one day she would be sleeping next to a woman. I always considered myself to be a transvestite, in that I would always get aroused when I dressed up.  However, I have been able to wear panties all day without being aroused.  It just makes me feel good, and normal.  I also now realize how hiding and denying that side of my personality was impacting my self image, and my perspective on life.  I used to think that I was a man that liked and needed to express my feminine side.  I now realize that I am more of a woman, living life as man.   I don’t know where this is all going to take me, but it is going to be an interesting journey.   Thanks Michelle.

Do TG Desires Decline With Age ?

Ask Dr. Kit

One subject we’ve recently discussed is the effect of age on TG desires..that both sexuality and TG feelings may decline with age.  Don’t know if it’s true or not.

Do TG desires decline with age?

Do TG desires decline with age? I suspect that if you are asking that question then some people involved in that conversation have actually seen desire decline; so it cannot be denied that something real changed. But, as you will no doubt notice, it does not change all people in the same way. What exactly are the feelings that diminish? Probably the desire to dress like a woman, be seen as a woman, make love to one’s self and others as a woman. This might be accompanied by a reduced desire to research on the internet, talk about transgender subjects, or buy clothing. Some people may remember the excitement that dressing and making contact with other TG people had when it was new. Some of that excitement goes away simply because it is no longer new. Some people find their female selves later in life and the excitement never ceases. Others peak in adolescence or young adulthood and by mid-life it is all old-news. But even that statement is too simplistic. In what is no-doubt a web of complex personal factors, let us consider two points:

  1. Lust vs. Love

If there is an erotic component to crossdressing or gender presentation then that will change as sexual drive changes with age. As people age their sex drive may be somewhat less urgent and less strong then when they were younger. They may need sexual release and expression less frequently. This is not true for everyone, just a generalization that is true for many. When this happens, the sexual aspects of gender expression may become less charged. The sparkling erotic love affair that one had with one’s female self in early adulthood can transform late in life into a the companionable love that one has for a long-term partner. Your partner may be essential for your life happiness and you still love them, but the sexual pull may be much less than it was earlier in life. Many people report this as a transition from erotic crossdressing to a feeling of solid female identity. This can be aided by the natural effects of age.

  1. Interests Change Over Time

Interests change as people age. When a sixteen year old wants a tattoo, or when a nineteen year old wants to transition gender, the parents inevitably bemoan the fact that their child is too young to make this commitment. The parent says “I am not the same person that I was when I was (18, 19,, 22…)”. The older you get, the more you appreciate the truth of this statement. Of course some things stay the same, in other ways we are profoundly changed. Most cis people (non-TG people) maintain some stability in their gender identity and sexual orientation throughout their life. But if you look very closely you will see that within that gender and sexual orientation there are considerable degrees of change. Over the course of life cis women see changes in wardrobe, changes in body, changes in sexuality, and changes in preferences for social activities; so why would TG women not change? People develop new interests, lose interest in old hobbies, let go of old friendships and engage new social groups. This can be a natural part of life. If your social life revolves around TG activities, then these shifts may involve some degree of withdrawal from the TG community or reducing TG expression for a period of time.

Points one and two could account for diminished TG desire in at least some of the people. But there is a third element that is all-important and that is the tendency for TG desires to ebb and flow. Many of the readers will have experienced the intensity of their desires go up and down over the years. Sometimes in mid-life the desire goes way up and never goes down again. Other times it decreases and never goes up again. Who knows why? The tricky thing is that you never know until life is over whether the desire will swing again. Just because it is at a low when you are seventy, does not mean that it will not be at a high when you are eighty. This bit of uncertainty means that we must always look at gender identity and sexuality as a process. There is no static experience. You do not have to lock yourself into an identity label or definition of yourself. Stay open to change and don’t write-off people who take a break from TG expressions or reduce contact with community. It’s not over till it’s over.

 Dr. Katherine Rachlin is a clinical psychologist, gender specialist, and sex therapist in private practice in New York City.  Her website is www.   You can reach her at or 212-206-3636