The Men’s Section at H&M

So I went shopping yesterday at H&M, because I’d heard some people say their guys’ clothes often run small enough to fit the smaller FTM people. I was lucky enough to find some t-shirts, button-up work shirts, etc. for not too much, just to get by until I start T and see what might happen to my sizing.

It was weird as shit going into the guys’ section of the store. It’s very separate from the girls’ section, and I kept waiting for someone to tell me I was in the wrong place.

I found some clothes I liked in the guys’ section and some in the girls’. So I took them all in to the fitting room at once. I’ve always hated trying on clothes, despite having an ok body, and I was braced for it to be awful as usual. But it was strange — I tried on all the guys’ clothes first, and even though fewer pieces fitted me, when they didn’t I was like, whatever. And when they did, it felt so good.

And then when I tried on all the girls’ clothes, it was just…that same old panicky misery failure feeling. Where even when the clothes fit, they still didn’t suit me, and I felt that familiar anxiety of not being able to explain what about them was so very wrong.

Then I looked over at the pile of awesome guys’ clothes, and remembered why.

I don’t have much body dysphoria, so it’s actually kind of validating to be able to see the social dysphoria I have as clearly (manifested in clothing anxiety) as I did yesterday. Even though I still don’t fit men’s clothes, it felt better to fail to fit them, than to succeed at fitting women’s clothes. I didn’t expect the difference in vibe to be so sharp.