A Halloween Engagement

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A Halloween Engagement

By Jessica C

Do you know how it feels like to have a name where you're constantly being told it’s a 'girl’s name'? Well, I am usually called John, but with my European heritage, my name is spelled JEAN. I am now twenty-four years old and it is no longer a big deal. In fact, it has probably helped me relate to women more closely.

I work in a corporate office complex. I graduated from college over a year ago last May and quickly got hired. However, as a junior in my department, I am working out in an office cubicle with the support staff. There are over a half dozen of us who often pal around after work and festively celebrate the holidays in ways our folks would not.

This is going to be my second Halloween with this group. Low and behold, I said yes, to going to a Halloween party before I find out Rob and Hal opted out. I probably would have gone anyway.

We even are to stay at a hotel near the party, in case there’s too much drinking. In case, ha? We don’t drink to get drunk, but we drink enough that we don’t plan on driving or working the next day.

The hotel is a block away from the Blue Swan, the party site, in a good part of town. We suspect Rob and Hal might have chosen not to go with us because they see it as a gay/lesbian bar. While Jenn, Cara, Tess and I know it as a friendly open bar with a good reputation. I’m straight and I think the others are though I’m not sure as it's not my business.

Jenn first suggested, “Hey John, since the rest of us going are women, why don’t you go to the Halloween Party as Little Bo Peep?” I said yes, thinking it would be funny. Besides I never come up with an original idea like this. I guess my image of Little Bo Peep was not the same as Jenn’s adult version.

I took a vacation day for Friday as I was sure it would be hard to get up and get going after the Halloween party. Tess said we could continue at the hotel and make it a fun weekend. I wasn’t planning on that but I had not made other plans, so it would be possible.


Come Thursday we work until one p.m., the department boss allows us to take sick time for the remaining hours. The hotel rooms are available around 3:00 and Jenn asked me to be there shortly after 4:00 to get ready. The thought of a woman or two helping me to get ready in my costume is a bit exciting, to say the least.

Jenn greets me in our suite and tells me we’re sharing the same bathroom. She wants me to hurry up so she can help me and still have time for herself. I flinched at the idea of shaving my legs, but Tess agrees with Jenn that it’s essential. I willingly, if begrudgingly agree.

Utilizing a gaff upsets me, but Jenn’s justification was, “If we drink too much, we don’t want to be back here and tomorrow morning find out we had sex with you. Besides being flat down front, it will give you the feeling of being one of us girls.” Needless to say, she got her way. I hesitate again upon seeing the adult version of Little Bo Peep. Jenn does apologize, “I thought the dress would be the traditional long dress.” It isn’t but with the frilly underpants, I've assured nothing really shows. Tess says, “The cheerleader's costume would show more.”

We order room service but I’m too nervous and can’t eat as my stomach is way too nervous. Come at 8:00 p.m. we’re making our final preparations. I have fixed myself a mixed drink using one of the little bottles in the room. Jenn does my makeup and even curls a few locks of my hair to drop precariously from around my bonnet. Cara says I make a convincing Little Bo Peep. A check in the mirror caused me frighteningly to agree. I only get to drink half of my second mixed drink as I’m pulled along and we’re on our way to the Blue Swan pub.

Jenn’s a Caribbean Pirate, Cara is Athena and Tess is a hot female devil; they each have theater grade costumes. Jenn does remind me as we go in, “Remember to eat some appetizers, you want to have in your stomach.” All of us usually hold our alcohol quite well so it was not a major concern to me.

I lose count of the number of women coaching me in having a feminine voice over the first hour and a half. They must have done a pretty good job as the next hour I have at least three dances with men. Using the women’s room isn’t a big deal with the exception of the need to relieve my bladder and having to struggle with the costume. Well, there was an exception.

Someone named ‘Nessie’, I think helps me with my makeup. I’m thinking we might be together after the party as my next two dances are with her and my juices are flowing.


This time period goes from a little fuzzy to blank.Though it is filled with warm feelings and a pair of hazel eyes.


It is now morning and I’m waking up in a hotel bedroom, but stretching my arms I hit the person next to me. I thought it would be Nessie. It’s a man and as I bring my hand back I feel he is an aroused man. I’m down to a bra and my panties, but the panties are not the ones I had been wearing.

“Hello,” the man says, “Welcome back to the world. Seemingly you needed your rest.” One of his hand is inside of my leg seeking to pull me, pull me his way. He was being deliberate but not at all forceful as he gave me a gentle kiss on the cheek. It was when he moves to situate himself between my two legs and seeks to lift my hips that an alarm goes off.

Now I speak up, “What do you think you’re doing? Where am I?”

He says, “Last night I told you I would need to do this again. It’s to prove to you that you’re willing and enjoy it.” He applies some gel to my butt which is slightly sore, but alas I’m not repulsed. As he begins to raise me up, I raise my legs up as though to go around his body.

‘How, why did I think to do something like that?’

He begins to push himself into me and as I see his smiling face and his beautiful hazel eyes, I’m infatuated with him. I’m even remembering his name, Matthias. We kiss and we’re soon making love. Once again it feels all warm inside; Matt relaxes on me, I again speak up. “How can this be, I’m not gay. I don’t do these things.” I speak more strongly, “Where am I! Where have you lured me?”

Matt smiles, “You’re probably two floors above Jenn and the others. Jenn said, ‘Your sister Sheila should soon be here.’” I’m relieved in the thought, she would at least insist on me going to their room.

I say, “I need to get up and change and before I go with her.”

Mathias says, “I’d suggest you shower first. Then you can use your costume or you can use my robe. But I think your sister will be here before you get there.”

I begin to pull the sheet up around me as I seek to get up to make my way to the bathroom. There’s a knock at the door, it is Shelia saying, “John open up we need to talk. ...I know about you being here, please open up.” Matthias opens the door, “Hi, I’m Matthias why don’t you come in and visit with Jean.”

My sister is caught off guard with me being called ‘Jean’ and she looks to me. “I heard he dressed as Jean and that he drank too much on an empty stomach.” She continued turning to Matt but speaks to both of us. “No disrespect but my brother doesn’t do this. I just felt a need to come up and make sure he wasn’t under any duress.”

Matt joked, “He has been under, but not in duress. I don’t regularly do this either but we hit it off last night and it has happened. Please don’t discount your brother or our being together.”

I never made it out of bed and Sheila was now sitting on the edge looking at me. I say, “Sheila this is Matthias Strass, Matt this is my sister Sheila Hulme. Thanks for caring Sis and I’m as surprised as you are. It was surprising for me to wake up this morning and I didn’t plan it. But I confess I wasn’t under duress being Jeanne with him.”

Sheila asks, “I hear you went to the Blue Swan, what were you expecting? I didn’t think you’re… um. Well liking men… um, or is it liking to be a girl?”


Finally Matt suggests, “Why don’t you let Jeanne shower and get dressed and then we can get some breakfast and visit over some coffee.”

Sheila gets up off the bed turns her head, “Get going, I won’t look.” She does step on the sheet and caused it to fall on my way to the bathroom.

Once I’m out of the shower, it’s awkward as the breast forms were still attached. 'How am I going to change into the clothes from Sheila?'

I’m the one surprised. The bag of clothes Sheila brought up from Jenn has a skirt and top outfit and more, but not my clothes. Matt says, “I guess that was my fault, I asked Jenn if she had an outfit you could wear. I assumed with your breasts you need to dress this way. So I asked for a skirt outfit.”

I ask, “Sheila please go back to the other room, my room and get my clothes and the stuff to help get these off.”

Sheila grins, “Jenn and the others were on their way to checking out. After they gave me this bag, they asked if you needed anything else. I told them no, and they left. You will need to make do being a regular girl or getting back into the Bo Peep costume that I'd like to see.”

She helps me with my makeup and hair. Neither she nor I could get over how much I look like our Mom. Sheila and I both have her fine features. I had to use the toilet and because of the kind of gaff I’m wearing, I need to sit and wipe. I can’t believe how a simple act is a turn-on to me.


When I come back out Matt says, he’s asked, Sheila to give us 15-30 minutes. I wonder why we’d need that much time.

He opens his arms and I step into them, again mesmerized as I look into his eyes and await his kiss. Matt steps back and holding my hands. “I can’t believe I am asking this, but I’ve fallen in love with you. Jeanne, will you please marry me?”

I can’t believe he’s asked, nor can I believe my hesitation to quickly answer him. I know, it quickly should be ‘No’. But the longer I pause the feelings are welling up inside of me, Jeanne. I say, “Yes, I love you too.” Did I just say that I must have as the joy is overwhelming? Matt lifts me up and whirls me around as we kiss.

I pick up my purse and look for my lipstick. My lipstick isn’t messed as it was set to dry and its a very good lipstick. We walk down to the lobby. I meet with Sheila as Matt checks out. Sheila asks, “Jean had you ever met Matt before?”

I didn’t say anything but I remember, Matt and I had met at a conference a few weeks before. ‘I had been taken then by how he spoke at the conference, carried himself and how he looked. I hadn’t thought of it as anything special then. I do remember I went out of my way to meet him. I didn’t know when he was gay until I heard a woman say to another, "I wouldn't mind being with him." And another woman said, "I hear he's not your type. I hear he's into others like himself." Then again I was surprised by my desire to just meet and say hello to him.’

When we go out front, Sheila and I are both surprised to see a Jaguar awaiting us. All I know is Jaguars are expensive. I don’t know if this Jaguar XJ is special or not. Matt opens the door for both of us and as we’re getting in he asks me, “Did you tell her?”

Sheila quickly asks, “Tell me what?” I hesitate in saying anything and once Matthias is in the car, he realizes I haven’t.

“We’ll tell you as we have one stop before the restaurant.” We stop in front of the best jewelry store in York. I quickly remember something my Mom had said long before when I was a young boy. We didn’t stop at this jewelry store because it was much too expensive. I know since the recession it has catered to a broader range of customers but it is still the elite jewelry store here.

Sheila’s eyes are like saucers as we go in. Matt finds the diamond rings. I look for prices but they are not readily visible. Matt turns to Sheila, “I’ve asked Jeanne to marry me and she has said yes. I hope you will help us in selecting an appropriate engagement ring.”

I am waiting for Sheila to scream or get angry. She does take her own time looking at me and then Matthias and back to me. I finally speak up, still using Jeanne’s voice, “He said he loves me and asked me to marry him.” I am trying to find better words, but finally say plainly, “I love him too and I said, ‘Yes, I love you.”

She joyfully says, “Congratulations Sis! I can’t believe I’m saying this but I am moved by how happy you two are.”

It takes us a good amount of time to find the right ring, diamond and to size it. I have never really noticed rings before. A number of friends have gotten engaged or married and I saw their rings. But as a guy, I hadn’t been very interested and just complimented them that their ring was nice or beautiful. But as I look today one is prettier than another until I know that I have found the most wonderful ring for me. It isn’t gaudy nor the biggest diamond. I can’t believe Mathias is willing to pay nearly twenty thousand dollars for the ring. But I am tickled he does.

It is mentioned we will need to bring it back to be properly sized but Matthias wants to show our parents. “Parents! My parents, what will they say?"

Matt says, “After my mother gets over the shock of hearing I’m getting married; I think she’ll love you and insist we get a better ring. What do you think your Mom will say?”


I say, “I’m not sure how to approach it. I’m afraid she’ll die of a shock. I don’t know how to tell her and my Dad, that their son John is Jeanne, let alone that I’m engaged to be married to you.”

I look to Sheila. Sheila says, “It is a beautiful ring. While Mom is shocked, I think she’ll love the ring and have no trouble understanding why you love Matthias.”

Sheila pauses, “I’m sorry but I thought you showing up at the house unannounced would not be the way to go. Dad’s being gone might be helpful. But I called and Mom is expecting us. She wants to meet her daughter as well as your fiance.”

I am quite happy that Sheila has called ahead. Still, I can’t believe we are on our way there. The neighbors notice the Jaguar driving up into our driveway. Our Dad is in upper management so our house is quite nice. Mom greets the three of us at the door. I know she’s in shock but she greets me with open arms and a warm hug and a kiss on the cheek. It is almost like everything is normal.

Mom asks, “Jeanne come with me to my room, we need a private conversation first.” Mom pats the bed next to her asking me to sit. “Your sister says you went to a costume party, so tell me about meeting Matthias and you becoming engaged to him. I didn’t know you’re gay, so this is quite a surprise.” She is still holding her composure and I do not see any anger.

“Mom, I know it’s hard to believe. I’m not gay though Matthias is and I’m engaged as Jeanne, not John. I went to the costume party with Jenn, Cara, and Tess from work. They talked me into going as Little Bo Peep. I had been drinking but I wasn’t drunk. I am not quite sure when we started to dance together. Our group stayed pretty much together until later in the evening. I don’t think you want me to go into it more, I’d be embarrassed.”

Mom insists, “My child gets engaged, don’t worry I’m interested in your story.”

“Well,” I say, “I woke up this morning in Matt’s room not quite sure where I was or what happened. It felt strange when I realize I was in bed with Matt. He kissed me on the check and said he needed to do something we did the night before. Um… Um…”

I pause until my mother insists I go on. “Well, I told him I wasn’t like this, but when he was in between my legs, lifting my hips and um. Well, when he was in me and he was coming down on me that I saw his eyes and smile.”

“You won’t understand but I became infatuated with him and knew I loved him and the feelings just burst inside of me. It was love at first sight, I’m taken with him, Mom. I know that sounds strange and you won’t understand.”

Mom raises a finger for me to hush, “I do understand, but it’s a woman’s story as are your feelings. Your response was that of a woman in love.”

She continues, “I agree, I don’t see you as being gay. It seems strange to me. I don’t understand how, but I think being Jeanne becomes you. Let’s go back out and visit with your fiance.”

Mom asks me to pour cups of tea and to ask Matthias if he wants coffee or tea. She’s putting some cookies on a plate. We are sitting in the living room talking. I’m on the love-seat next to Mathias. Mathias tells how he wants my help to watch over some of the family businesses and do some investing.

Mom says, “You are a young man, not even thirty I suspect. How much investing can you be doing?”

Matthias says, “I am twenty-eight and I started investing before I was fifteen. My record in the time since is better than any in the family including our investors. I suspect you are wanting to make sure I can properly support your daughter. I assure you, I will do that and more.”

He says, “My mother will like your protective nature. I cannot wait till you two meet.”

Mom looks at her watch, “Sheila are you willing to take your sister shopping. She’ll need three dresses or outfits to just get started. I doubt if she’ll know the extras and everything else she will need?”

I speak up, “Mom, we haven’t had anything to eat yet.”

Mom looks at Matthias, “Is that true, you haven’t gotten her breakfast. Sit down and I will get something to eat for all of us.”

Matthias asks, “I will take all of us to get something to eat. Do you want something Asian or Italian?”

Sheila speaks up, “Mom, we need to go out to eat. You need to ride in his beautiful car. I let Mom have the front seat.” Mom says no, but the rest of us agree and she sits up front.

We are soon at Bel Paese Italian Ristorante. Instead of remarking about the car my Mom is complimenting me on how I get in and out of the car. I tell her that Sheila had already grilled me as did my friends the night before.

The meal was great but my needing to get some clothes constantly comes up. I am very nervous as we go shopping. Mom takes my hand and squeezes it lightly, “Relax and enjoy, you present yourself quite well as a young woman. You will be fine.” The words and Mom’s attention is comforting to me.

Matthias suggests we get at least two very nice outfits, one for meeting his folks and another for a dinner. But before we go looking for dresses, Matthias asks if there is any need for shape-wear I should be wearing. I’m surprised as mother and Sheila hurriedly trip saying "Yes." Mom looks at me and says, “You’re not fat but you could use losing ten pounds and have something bring in your waist.”

I did imagine this morning about getting some skirts and dresses to fit my new identity, but three pieces of shapewear were not part of it. Putting on my clothes over a camisole half-slip does wonders to change my mind. Mom guesses that I am now wondering about getting some nice breast forms. She says, “When you are home next, we will go looking to fill those cups, but we will be realistic.”

I get a black dinner dress, a dark blue satin skirt and a beautiful white satin blouse with lace. That’s when Sheila comes carrying a gorgeous summer print dress and mother insists I model it. It is a beautiful dress but it shows off my legs way too much. Sheila says, “Tell me you wouldn’t like to be in that cute number next to Matthias?”

We get three more skirts, more blouses, and tops. Mom encourages Matt to sit down as we will begin the tedious shopping of getting more panties, bras, sleepwear, shoes, stockings, pantyhose, makeup and more.

I think I am home free when Sheila requests I sit upon a stool nearby the makeup area. I begin to protest when she asks my preference in diamond ear studs.

I ask, “Am I just getting one pair to start or do you think it would be alright to get a two in each ear?” The woman helping me comments, “That is a beautiful ring, when are you getting married?”

Sheila comments, “She doesn’t know, she just became engaged this morning.”

Bonnie steps away and is soon back. She pierces my ear and puts in a larger diamond stud. “It is humble in relation to your ring, but it is more suitable to go with it. This pair will be on me.”

Mom says, “You can’t do that. That is fine jewelry.”

The woman turns to Mom, “Mrs. Hulmes, I am the manager of the jewelry department. It is my pleasure to celebrate your daughter’s engagement.” Mom can only say thank you. Mom later tells me, “Bonnie knew I only had one daughter and she saw Sheila there.” Mom did promise we would be back for more jewelry. Bonnie told my Mom, “Congratulations and I compliment you on accepting her as your daughter. I can’t say I saw this coming, but it seems to naturally fit her now.


Once we are back to the house, Mom asks Matthias, “Is it your hope to introduce my daughter to your parents yet tonight or do I have her until morning?”

Matt says, “I would love to allow her to stay here tonight, but I do not want word of our engagement to reach them before I can introduce her. We have been to many public places today, so I would rather go now than to wait and chance the news getting to them before I can tell them.”

Mom asks Sheila’s help to help me pack. Actually they send me to the shower with encouragement to freshen up especially well. Sheila checks on me while I’m in the shower and she has me shave a few areas that I and my friends had missed. Sheila helps me to brush out my hair and shows me how to apply my makeup. “Please, tomorrow keep it simple and do not use too much makeup. I hope they love you as we do.”

We are in the car by 6:00 p.m. and on our way to the Strass home in Brynn Mawr west of Philadelphia. Matthias wakes me with a kiss five minutes before we arrived. It is shortly after seven thirty that we arrive through the beautiful iron gates driving up to the front steps of a mansion.

His mother, Ruth, and sister, Rebecca come out to greet us. His mother is looking at me up and down, and I am becoming more nervous by the second. She gives us a softening smile, "I apologize young lady. Matthias dear, will you introduce me to this young lady?”

He says, “Mother, I apologize for coming unannounced but I wanted to introduce her in person, this is my fiancee, Jeanne Hulme. Jeanne this is Ruth Anne Strass my mother and Rebecca Anne my sister.” We are encouraged to follow them into the house. There is a large receiving room where wine, cheese, and bread are offered to us. I take the lead of Rebecca as I sit up, not allowing my back to hit the back of my chair. I have seen this in other girls and I’m determined to correct my posture and sit up properly.

Ruth Strass suggests to her son to sit while she tours me through the house. “Ms. Hulme may I show you the house. I have someone preparing a room for you next to Matthias. I hope you do not mind that we give it a strong touch of femininity. I do like how you carry yourself. …Do you enjoy many of the finer things?”

I joyfully respond before I begin to turn shy, “Yes! From the way I see your son to beautiful clothes, from a walk in beautiful gardens as I see here to how I see your touch in this house. I do confess, I have much to learn. I did not know Matthias has so much. When he said he invested; I thought I too have a savings account. I hope you can be patient with me. I’d love to be a daughter-in-law you can be proud of?” Most of the rooms are nearly two-three times what I am used to. My bed will have four high posts and the finery to make it look like a princess’s bed.

She says, “Once we announce your engagement, you might be asked to stay in the carriage house for propriety’s sake. I am not naive enough to think he won’t be with you. You might as well let him in, we would not want him to please himself elsewhere.”

My expressions must give my discomfort away. Rebecca speaks up, “We are not shy in speaking up around here when we’re to ourselves. We know my brother and I for one am tickled he has fallen in love with someone so much a woman. If you don’t mind, I will help you shop for clothes appropriate for society. Don’t worry we’ll use Daddy’s money. My Mom and I will be happy to help you be a refined woman here. Would you enjoy that? We will not force you to be anyone other than who you are as Matthias’ fiancee.”

We have walked into Rebecca’s room that is nicely kept but has an eloquent dress that has been worn and lying on a chair. I pick up the dress, holding it out and dance in a circle hugging the dress. “Ooou, I see you have much to teach me that I will love.”

Ruth speaks up, “Would you mind becoming a little better endowed?”

“Um, my mother, sister, and Matthias have already spoken about that and I agree. I do want to be a lady but not one overly endowed for his pleasure.”

Ruth and Rebecca nod, “That is without saying. You will be a beautiful young woman that both your mothers can be proud of. Less than that demeans first you and then us, I hope you are mature enough not to allow it to be otherwise. This will be a change for Matthias, but if he loves anyone enough to change, it seems to be you.”

We walk through a large kitchen, and Ruth speaks up again. “We like family to know their way around a kitchen, how to care for the home and one’s guests. If you love the garden do not think yourself above a little dirt or hair blown out of place. We think it is as important as knowing how to present oneself. We don’t particularly like pretentious women who can’t do anything.”

I sigh and let out a big breath. It sounds like there is much to live up to, but I'm thankful perfection isn’t it.

There is a reception room where hot tea is present, but so are three glasses and wine. It is just us three and simple conversation. Mrs. Strass asks, “Would you mind if you were to give up your present work and work with the Strass Foundation and be active in doing some projects and causes you would enjoy doing?”

Joyfully a new world is opening up for the good, but it is coming so fast. It is hard to take it all in and not giggle too much with joy.

We are back to Matthias and he hugs me. “Did you enjoy the tour? You seem to have enough estrogen that my mother and sister like you already.”

I look at him, “Yes, I am enjoying this. Do you still love me?” He draws me close, gives me a big hug and kisses. Whispering, “Yes, it feels great for both of us. It is extra nice that Mom and Becky are coming under your magic charm.”

Rebecca interrupts and asks, “I hope you’re going to stay for a few days? We’d like to help the future Ms. Strass to get acclimated and some of a woman’s necessities.”


Jean Joseph (Joe) Strass and his wife Claudette and the senior Mr. Henri Joseph Strass come into the house. All are cordial and warmly though maybe with some reservations, they welcome Matthias and me. Everyone takes their cue from Ruth. “Henri, Claudette, and Joe, with joy I introduce you to Matthias’s fiancee Jeanne Hulme. I think she will become a precious addition to the family. Claudette is our grandchildren here?”

“Jeanne, I hope you like children. I love to hear their voices and activity fill the house when we are a family.”

Claudette welcomes me with an air kiss to each cheek. She whispers her welcome. She and Rebecca take me off with them. “If I did not know Matthias, I would naturally see you as a woman. I don’t want to be rude nor to make assumptions, but I see you as a transgender woman. Am I accurate?”

“Since I fell in love with Matthias, I don’t think I’ll ever go back.”

Rebecca asks, “You look tired, has it been a long day?”

“We shared our engagement with my family, did a lot of shopping. Including this beautiful ring, but Matthias wanted to make sure we got here to share our news with his parents and family.”

Claudette asks, “And when did he propose to you. I hope this is not a Halloween stunt.”

“He asked me after he wooed me off my feet this morning. He his eyes mesmerized me as we kissed. I could not believe he was proposing to me. It is not a Halloween stunt, nor did I know he or his family are wealthy.”

I begin to cry at the thought of what they might think of me. Claudette and Rebecca hug me as they take me to my room. Someone asks, “It would be good for you to shower and freshen up. Do you have a nightgown and robe you can change to?”

I say, “I can’t, what will everyone think?”

Claudette’s voice is lite, “The women already understand that your emotions and all this activity have caught up to you. I suspect you have eaten only a little to go with the wine. Did you have a glass or two at noon?”

I try to comply as I walk toward my bathroom, but the buttons of my blouse give me difficulty. “They are small and on the wrong side.” Rebecca comes and helps me, “Don’t worry Sis I am comfortable helping you.” She is happy and remarks first how slim I am.

“But I needed the shapewear, and others say I need to lose weight.”

“You are already attractive. I promise you as you look for wedding gowns, you are the one who will insist on dropping the weight. Be reasonable with yourself.” She looks as the shapewear peels away, “You present your girl-self well. I like this, it will allow us to sun together as well as enjoy some other times.”

I step into the shower that Becky had already started. The shower door closes behind me and she says, “It is a joy to be here for you. Jeanne, you have not only won my brother’s heart, but you have also won me as your sister.”

My emotions and feelings wash over me like the shower water. I stand under the water, crying and I cannot stop. I know Claudette has entered the bathroom to see if I’m hurt or in trouble. Becky announces, “She just needs to cry; I hope you’re in no hurry, Claudia.” It becomes like a girls’ time as they assure me it is normal and that both of them have learned to enjoy a good cry at times.

I shampooed and conditioned my hair as suggested, but Claudette wants proof that I rinse my hair sufficiently. When I let her check she’s pleasantly amused, “O you are going to make such a beautiful bride for Matthias and sister to us. That is if he allows you to obtain some additional assets and to be made over for your own self-image.”

“It shouldn’t be his decision about my body, should it? I agree with what you are thinking. He might not want my little guy changed. He and I can talk about that.” Claudia and Rebecca’s eyes indicate I’m sharing more than they’re ready for.


It was a few days later and we were together watching a football game. I and Becky are wearing those new NFL jerseys for women. Matthias pulls me down on top of him. I continue to love his attention as our relationship is hot and still deepening. But I’m uncomfortable with how he shows it around family. We have been to several LGBT places where it is expressed overtly, but I don’t like that around his family or mine.

I slap Matt’s hands and tell him to stop. I get up and walk out, Claudia comes following me. “Jenny you need to know that we’ve come to accept Matthias and his ways as being different. I hope you can relax and accept that. We don’t want that tearing you apart.”

“Claudia, I love him and I like his attention, but if our engagement is going to hold he needs to have respect for our families and me. I'm used to that kind of attention being between him and me. Nieces and nephews, our parents and your understanding shouldn’t have to be stretched that far.”

Becky heard us and asks, “What if he can’t or is unwilling?”

“Matt’s an intelligent as well as a very passionate romantic. I don’t intend to lose him or walk away. If I’m wrong that he and I can’t have healthier boundaries around family and friends, I probably would pull away.”

I lift my eyes back to Claudia and she’s looking past me. “I just said that and Mathias is there isn’t he?” I’m worried because he doesn’t like being embarrassed in front of others. I turn to Mathias and he gives me a warm hug, drawing me to him.

“You’re right, I’m passionate about what I want. I’ve also become accustomed to how I go about things. But as you say I’m intelligent and I know enough that you’re different from the other guys I have liked. I like the mix you bring to our relationship and I love you.”

His voice is soft, uncertain, “I’m having trouble changing; you’re not like other guys. You’re right I pushed boundaries with my parents and the family. I wanted to be accepted on unconditional terms. I am comfortable with their love for me and I love their acceptance of you.”

Matthias speaks up, “When we're at our places with friends I will push you to realize not only me but many in the LGBT community are different. Yes, we tend to be different from others. I hope you can see it that way.”

I’m growing, getting comfortable to being part of the LGBT community, after all, I’m a trans-woman. Matt’s not interested in other trans-women. His preference apart from me is men, and when he’s out with the guys he’s out with people he’s attracted to that share common interests like sports and good cars.


It is the Sunday before Christmas and we’re at my parent’s house with both families when Matt goes to his knees to propose to me again. He takes off my ring and gives me another that is even more beautiful. “Jeanne, you know I love you and you know who I am. Will you marry me and be my love for life?”

“I do.”

Matthias speaks again, “Mom and Dad Hulme, we plan to get married at my folk's place early in June. We have bought a home here in York as I’ve let go of my apartment here. We’ll usually stay at my folks’ carriage house when we’re in the Philly area before we get a place there.”

I speak up, “Mom and Dad, most are going to see us as a gay couple and I see myself as your daughter.” I am the one most people wonder about in my engagement with Matthias." I think my folks hoped it would be passing and that I couldn’t be a girl. “My being in a gay relationship may still be hard for some to accept. It is no longer a question for me, and I think family and friends need to accept me and our engagement.”

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