Passed a test

I’ve just spent a few days visiting my father. I visit him every so often for a few days to see how he his: he is getting on and lives alone since his wife / my mother died three years ago. Dad is well and we enjoyed our time together.

In the past these visits have provided lots of opportunity for shopping and dressing up:

  • The train station where I have lunch on the way out has a branch of Accessorize, where I have often bought knickers
  • I would not take any extra male underpants with me and I would wear knickers every day
  • It’s a cold rainy part of the country so on shopping trips out I would often wear a bra as well
  • I would wear knickers and bra on the way back. The train journey breaks at a county town with branches of Accessorize, New Look and Marks & Spencers and I would enjoy shopping. I would change out of the bra before arriving home

In fact, shopping and dressing up was an integral part of the visit (although one that only I knew about). So, having said goodbye to my dressing up habit last August, this visit was a bit of a test.

I certainly felt pangs, especially walking past the Accessorize on the way out. On the way back I went to Marks & Spencers and bought some men’s clothes, and felt the same pangs as the escalator took me past the lingerie department. I think the pangs were more of nostalgia than actual temptation. The appeal of dressing up is still there — but that appeal reminds me of the despair and even panic I felt last August, so it doesn’t develop into temptation.

I got back home without taking that detour. I passed that small test. I don’t feel like I was under the yoke of a new rule. This post is a little celebration.



I am reading “Better than Before” by Gretchen Rubin. I’ll review elsewhere, once I’ve finished (I like a lot, and I dislike a lot). For now, I’ve just read the chapter on monitoring. I found it inconclusive, so I thought I’d write up some of the ways I am using monitoring and where it seems to be effective.

Turns out I monitor quite a lot.

Some things I monitor


Idea for dealing with temptation

I have put all the concrete details in the first section below on “the object”.

** the object

I found a website called Little Women that sells bras (and matching panties) for ladies with smaller busts. Cup sizes go down to AAA, even for larger band sizes.

(I found this linked from a blog post called “How to wear bras when you don’t have breasts” — aimed not just and even not mainly at crossdressers.)

It is clearly a sensible site aimed at sensible ladies. The designs are nice: similar to the kinds of designs I look for at Marks & Spencers.

So this raised the exciting prospect of finding a bra that would really fit me, really support my tiny breasts. There is a page full of (about 30) bras in “my size” (I would be a 38AAA). A few are nice but my favourite is the “Sheer Lace” bra (and I would get matching briefs in size 12).

** the yearning

The “object” of temptation, then, is the thing I want, together with what I want to do with it: e.g., a bar of chocolate, and eating the bar of chocolate.

I would go back to this website again and again, in bored moments, or when my work suddenly felt a bit hard. I would imagine over and over the whole process: choosing my favourites, making an order, having, enjoying. I would plot how to time an order to co-incide with my wife being away. I would think about the money and start to feel guilty, …

So each visit to the website would end up fairly emotional and I would end up fairly keyed up. It was a kind of pulling in both directions.

I realised that eventually I would succumb: an opportunity would arise suddenly, and I would plunge, grab the opportunity before it disappered.

** the temptation

The last time this happened, I noticed it start, noticed that shift of attention. I managed to focus my attention on that “shifting”, before “it” had managed to attach my attention onto the yearning (it seemed to me that the shifting attention “wakes up” the yearning, which then goes and seeks out the object).

This new “thing” that un-snicked my attention from whatever I was doing and took it to wake up the yearning, this thing I thought was the “temptation”.

I imagined it as a bluey-greeny glassy sheen. Now that I’d noticed it, it seemed to stand between me and the yearning and the object; first as a kind of sentinel, then I thought of them wrapping like layers — ( temptation ( yearning ( object ))).

Now that I’d pulled the temptation into the field, in its own right, I felt “protected” in a way from the yearning. It also occurred to me that the yearning was protected from me: I could think about being tempted (and about resisting temptation) without getting into the emotional maelstrom.

I could hold the bluey-greeny glassy sheen itself up to investigation: why have you popped up now? Instead of letting you lead me where you will — perhaps you are a sign or a symptom of something else. Perhaps I should have an apple or go for a walk, park this work and do something else.

** effects

So that is what I have been doing. Sometimes just noticing it tug on my attention is enough. Sometimes I can sense its pull is stronger. I am starting to think about “managing” temptation — have a bar of chocolate now so I don’t end up gorging myself tomorrow.

I like the idea that it can protect the object of temptation from me — especially if the thing I’m tempted to do is something like a sharp remark or a lustful look.

A “bluey-greeny glassy sheen” is definitely how I imagined it, and it has a kind of presence of its own. I’ll use it as a kind of internal alarm signal: am I hungry? Tired? Do I need some fresh air? A clear head? Perhaps it will turn out to be down to just sensual rhythms like these.




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