Romana Annette's Profile
I am from the USA and I am a husband
who is transsexual, but not going to fully-transition.
What is your name and what is your background?
Romana Annette. I am a programmer/analyst,
laid-off for two years now. I am retired with a pension, and I am now
on Social Security. I have been married for over 24 years, and my wife
is quite supportive. I have no fear about expressing myself in public.
Is your name an alter ego
"femme" name - why did you choose that name?
My femme name is not my legal name.
Romana is taken from a character on the Dr. Who television series. Annette
is taken partly from my website name.
How old are you and how young
were you when you first thought about or actually cross-dressed?
I am 62 years old. I cross-dressed briefly age 11 to 12, and then stopped.
I started again at age 47.
Where do you buy your clothes?
J.C. Penney (in store and online),
Fashion Bug, Burlington Coat.
What leads you to choose the
styles you wear?
My wife has rules: age relevant, coordinated, and modest. I like brown,
ruddy, black, green, and blue, including floral prints. I do not like
anything overly ornate or embellished. When I go to concerts en femme,
my wife wants my outfits and shoes to be dressier than my everyday wear.
Do you have one look, or many images?
I only have one look, and one back-up
wig. I have actualized this identity, so I do not want to confuse people.
Is make-up and hair important
to you and if so how do you achieve your look?
Though I pass in the upper 20%, I do not put a lot of energy into passing,
so it is important that all the details look professional. I have had
seven make-up lessons, so it is always applied about the same. My wig
is an Integra, in a fairly short style that is realistic and flattering,
and can be worn all day long.
To what degree do you practice
hair removal, and other body feminisation?
I have had seven laser hair removal treatments, which got rid of half
my beard. I am in my fourth year of electrolysis to remove the gray
whiskers. I had my nose straightened. I plan one more surgery, which
will not be GRS. I have had both knees surgically replaced; my surgeon
gave me nice-looking knees. However, the household dress code says that
no hemlines can be more than 1-1/2 inches above the middle of my knees.
To what degree would you consider
permanent hair removal, hormones, surgery?
This question has overlap with a previous
question. I take spiranolactone, which will be unnecessary after my
next surgery. I will not have GRS. Until the next generation of female
hormones arrives, I will take Estroven, but I have not quite reached
that point yet.
Who knows you dress?
My wife, my stepdaughter, my grandson,
my step-son, my pharmacist, my auto dealers, all of my church congregation,
everyone at my Democratic precinct meeting, and endless people here
and there, in public.
How often do you dress and if you go out where to?
My current expression ratio is about
55% of the time. I go nearly anywhere in public, any time of the day.
What is a man and what is a
A man is anyone
who identifies as such, and a woman is anyone who identities as such,
usually, but not necessarily, with correspondence to their underlying
What's your definition of feminine?
The concept of feminine can be different
in locales, different at Boeing than at a beauty parlor. To me, being
feminine is using gender-neutral common sense, wearing dresses and skirts,
being relationship-oriented, and not being afraid to show emotion or
Where do you feel you fit on
the transgender spectrum CD TV TS?
I think I am in
the largest subgroup: husbands who are transsexual, but are not going
to fully-transition. I could be classed as a secondary transsexual.
Gender reassignment surgery and facial feminization surgery would be
nice, but it is all very expensive, it is emotionally exhausting, and,
as a woman, I do not get to do just anything I want to do, anyway.
Are you happy to be called
a tranny or a drag queen or does that offend you?
I am sorry, but
I do not like being called a tranny or a drag queen. I refer to myself
as a transwoman.
To what degree do you feel gender
dysphoric (i.e. that your brain is feminine)?
of my brain seems to be male, while the right-side seems to be female.
As a man, it is quite easy for me to do techie stuff, but impossible
for me to so socially interactive stuff.
What individual has inspired
you most in relation to your TG inclinations?
My wife made me
get make-up training, fitted wigs, fitted breast forms, and, most importantly,
she insisted that I listen to her and take her advice.
Do you feel you have any choice
in your TG thoughts and actions?
I have a choice
in how far this will go, and the frequency of expression within a given
time period, but this identity is now quite integrated, and it is my
means for proper expression in the world.
Have you ever suffered harassment
I do not think
I have suffered harassment or abuse, rather than a few icy stares at
work. My former employer would only let me dress on Halloween, or on
company property my own time.
Have you tried to stop?
I only tend to
vary the rate of my development. I go slowly, and I never seem to know
exactly where I am going until I have taken the steps to get there.
I absolutely will not stop being this way, or purge.
Are your sexual preferences
changed by your TG experiences (even temporarily)?
I only have sex
with my wife. I have a same-gender orientation, which means I am attracted
to both genetic women and transwomen.
Have you suffered illness, depression,
relationship break ups because of being TG?
I often get depressed,
both for being transgendered, and because of genetic heritage. If I
get too depressed, my body temperature will go way down.
If you could relive your life
without the TG experience would you choose to?
On the contrary,
I would have lived it differently, with the transgendered experience
earlier on, based on what I know now.
Do you feel that releasing your
"gender gift" has released creativity (poetry, music, art) that may
otherwise have remained repressed?
I am naturally
creative. We go to many symphonies, ballets, operas, and Broadway shows,
but it is not clear if this is because I am a transwoman, or if I get
to be a transwoman at half of these events. I am a science fiction writer,
and switching to a gender-bending genre got me published.
Have you ever performed and
if so how did you get into performing and what have you done?
I tried doing
a skit at a science fiction convention early on, but I now realize that
I am not a performer, except in real-life.
What one piece of advice would
you give to someone that has just found they are not the only tranny
in the world?
Join a group, get a therapist, and be as honest with yourself as possible.
Do not be a woman wanabee; develop actual skills in interacting as a
You may also have an adlib piece
of advice or a story to go into one of these chapters?
The majority of transgendered persons are probably legally married,
and the largest subgroup may be husbands who are non-op transsexuals.
Not everyone gets a divorce; many of us fight hard to preserve our relationships
and our support system.
I am functioning as a non-op transsexual.
I refer to myself as a transwoman. I take being a woman very seriously,
which means I will model my behavior in a relationship-oriented fashion.
I successfully express myself publicly nearly anywhere, any time of
the day, both in situations where people know nothing about me, and
in situations where people know me.
My wife and I have a same-gender, but
opposite-sex marriage. This makes us immune (for the time being) to
all those stupid marriage laws the religious right thinks up; however,
I am sure that there are a lot of people who would like to prevent us
from being married.
There are couples like us everywhere,
and Washington State may have the largest number. Here, there are even
a lot of couples where the husband has fully-transitioned. We (couples
like us) are not likely to be seen on talk shows, because we are living
under the radar and need to practice some discretion. This does not
mean we are in the closet.
My wife and I go nearly everywhere as
girlfriends. Since we are still a male-female couple, I do not think
we can be characterized as lesbians. Our relationship has recently moved
to a higher level, free of anger and blame. However, this does not mean
I can do anything I want, since my wife does have a vote on where this
How long has this been going
on and is there a cure?
This has been going on for me since 1989. There is no cure; how do I
cure myself of being myself?.
Early experiences … male to
female and female to male?
My early experiences, ages 11 to 12, were not very interesting.
Driving and dressing?
I regularly drive long distances en femme. I try to be a safe, courteous
driver. So far, I have not been stopped by the police.
Communication networks … virtual
I belong to four online forums. Self support groups & events … real
friends I belong to the Seattle Emerald City Transgender Club, Seattle
PFLAG, and the Evergreen chapter of Tri-ESS/ .
Mixing and mingling … facing
your own prejudices?
I mix in public with people who know all about me, and with people who
know nothing about me. It is not my job to explain anything, or be out
CD or TV or TG ?
I am a non-transitioning transsexual: a transwoman.
TG community … your extended
family or a bitch fest?
My TG community is quite diverse. Since I'm primarily mainstream, I
do not have any close friends in the TG community, and I think they
view me as a little odd.
The worlds your oyster … opportunities
I would like to renew marriage vows en femme. For me, any place I go
is a good place to express myself.
The future … hopes and predictions
Our therapist says I am fifty years ahead of the culture. There is a
culture war coming with fundamentalist evangelical Christians.