I was covering Wigstock so as to write an article for NEXT Magazine back in 2005 when I learned of what a crossdresser is. She told me her name was Rebecca and although he was a man dressed like a woman she told me she was not gay. This of course had me a bit confused but over the years my confusion diminished.
One of the biggest issues many cross dressers have is that somewhere along the line they started to believe that they were heterosexuals. They also started subscribing to the notion that boys ought not to like girly stuff. The combination of these two ideologies does quite the number on a Crossdresser’s mind. This conflict most always brings with it a breakdown of sorts. Usually culminating in a “if you can’t beat them, join them” mentality. Which THEM am I referring to? Depends at what stage of Crossdressing the person is in.
Growing up the term “THEM” is usually used by children to describe adults. It’s the adults that tell a young excited boy he ought to like “Boy things” and not “Girl things.” The child is left confused, hurt, and feeling as if his voice is not heard by adults. “Don’t MY needs and wishes matter?” thinks the child. "How can I be “WRONG” in liking something that makes me happy?” “Is it WRONG for me to be happy?” “Should I suck it up and resign myself to doing what THEY want me to do? Should I sacrifice my self-expression because it makes THEM unhappy?” “What’s the big deal anyway?” “ How is me wanting to dress like a girl hurting anyone?”
We are typically raised in a heterosexual world so it's no surprise many Crossdressers believe themselves to be heterosexual for years before they come to terms with their sexuality. The reality is that most crossdressers are "technically" bisexual. You see what most crossdressers have in common is that they LOVE femininity. This means many crossdressers, although they are not usually attracted to men who look like men, ARE attracted to men who look and dress like women. It is no surprise many crossdressers will engage in sexual activity with members of the same sex especially if their parter present as female.
There are some cases where the Crossdresser will engage in sex with a man who looks like man, but it's not as common. Usually when this happens both men are not usually involed in the "gay community" because although the sex act is gay its between a man and another man who is dressed like a woman. So it resembles heterosexual sex.
Gay culture is unique. I can't tell you the number of times I've talked to cross dressers who express how they are not comfortable in a "gay environment." Gays have their own rules of etiquette, their own lingo. Usually, cross dressers have a limited knowledge of such because they are are not submerged in that world. And so because the crossdresser is not submerged in the "gay world" they mostly feel heterosexual.
Simultaniously because gay men are submerged in the "gay world" or "gay culture" they have a hard time understanding cross dressers. Gay men's reference point of a man dressing as a woman is that of a drag queen, someone that is bitchy, loud, and commands attention. The crossdresser usually doesn't fit that bill. The crossdresser simply wants to be seen and treated as a woman and not some kind of wild drag queen. Crossdressing and Drag, although have many similarities, are fundamentally different in the energies they carry.
In conclusion, although no one really cares about labels, please know that you are wrong to call a crossdresser gay or straight. Most Cross dressers live in the in-between world of sexuality where things are more fluid. Not everything is black and white in life, cross dressing is a perfect example of the grey area so many are happy to live in.