“Listen, Dude. I’m Gorgeous.” Transwoman Finds Confidence During Dress-Up Day In High School.

by Blair Perry

I’m Blair Perry and I am from Boulder, Colorado.

When I was five, my sister dressed me up in a bunch of princess clothes and she put this hair on me that – it wasn’t even real hair, but it was kind of princess-like. She kind of did it to embarrass, like, to embarrass me, but I – I was living. And I don’t remember what color the princess dress was, but I felt cute. I would strut around the hallway, like back and forth because we had this long hallway in between rooms – in between our rooms, and I just had a great old time just being a cute little princess.

So years later, my family and I moved to a town outside of Houston. I was about 10 years old at the time. I was immediately kind of clocked as, like, a gay kid, even though I didn’t know what that meant at the time. I was immediately, like, called names. People always kept asking me if I was into boys even though I didn’t actually, like, have those kind of feelings yet. I was basically treated as, like, an outsider or like an “other” all the way throughout middle school and high school.

When I was 15, I shaved my legs for the first time. I wanted to see what it felt like. Also. I just really hated having hairy legs. My mom noticed and when I got home that day, she actually cornered me in my bedroom and asked me, like, very angrily, like, why did I do that? And I kind of was dodging around, dodging around why I was doing that. I kind of just told her I wanted to know what it felt like.

A month later, after that, having not learned my lesson from that, it was one of our dress-up days during homecoming. Because in the south, every week, every day of the week of homecoming, there’s a different dress-up day with a different theme. This day, the theme was “character day” which is really subjective. I used that opportunity to just have one of my friends put me up in a ton of makeup.

I came into the building the, like, first, like, hour before school started and I told one of my friends who was hanging out there, “Hey, want to just completely, like, make me over? Just, like, just, like, do whatever you want with it. Just, like, give me all – give me all of the – give me all of the face.” She just went to town on my face, just, like, all of the contour, all of the eye shadow, all of – I even had lashes on. I was just so enthralled when she, like, pulled the mirror in front of my face to show me her handy work. I looked – I looked stunning.

I spent the whole day throughout class, like, walking in between classes and forth just in full face throughout the whole day. Yes, I definitely got a lot more stares than I usually did and I probably did get a lot more name-calling than I did, but I had – at that point, I had learned to just kind of like accept it like background noise, which it was.

By my history class, which was at the end of the day, I had just accumulated just a number of different reactions to my totally changed appearance for that day. I had just sat down at my desk and, you know, right next to me is one of my acquaintances. We talk a lot during the class.

She asked me, “Wow. Like, who did your makeup?” And I told her it was one of my close friends that she was also friends with.

And she said, “Wow. Wow, you look really confident. That’s, like, a new look for you. I love it.”

I was like, “Yeah, thanks.” I liked that she said that I was confident because I hadn’t really been told that before.

Weeks later, I was at lunch with my boyfriend at the time. He had said something a little insulting to me as a way to try to make me a little smaller because he needed to make himself feel better because he had a lot going on. Because I eventually had found a bit of confidence in myself because of my previous incident, I had to tell him when he said something demeaning to me I had to say, like, “Listen, dude, I’m gorgeous. Lighten up.”

He was really taken aback by that. He was like, “Oh. Sorry, I didn’t know that he felt that I was demeaning you.”

And I said, “Yeah, I kind of did feel that way. You should probably be treating me a little better because, you know, I deserve that.”

And he was like, “Oh, all right. I’m sorry about that. I’ll try to be better.” And he was for a little bit but old habits do die hard and I had to cut him off.

I guess, so that new confidence that I found myself, like, so many years ago, for starters that led me to actually transition and that helped me realize that, like, hey, being that pretty is not just something I want to be temporary. In fact, I’d like it to actually be like a permanent thing for myself.

Eventually I did have the confidence to come out to my mother and tell her, like, everything. She was a little unsure at first. She was like, “Are you sure this is what you want?”

I was like, “Yes, this is completely where I wanna be heading. In fact, I’m already going there, whether you want me to or not.” She accepted me for who I was and has been one of my fiercest allies ever since.

Even going further than that, my newfound confidence is helped me, you know, broaden, expand my horizons on where I’ve been able to go after my life in Texas. I’ve learned now to surround myself only with people who are going to be positive influences for myself so that I can maintain my personal confidence and not have to feel – not have to feel that I have to shrink myself down for people that are only just going to make things harder for me.

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