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Myself in Public

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Me & My "BeYourself" Message - Mental Health

Since 2011 I have a huge positive drive and enthusiastic. On random periods I can get a periods of low mood. This usual happens when negativity from society becomes a bit intense but I control the level of negativity I encounter. Thankfully I can spot it myself, put in place strategies from the Counsellor who helped me in 2011 and can bounce back quickly. I am not going back to how I was and I will not let society and individuals put me back there. It is a drive I have and will hold on to. I am a glass half full, not half empty. Every cloud has a silver lining. I do not live on the past since 2011 but I stand up to certain indviduals, walk away from them, keep them out of my life. I keep a busy life via my hobbies and interests, volunteering as a room steward. Idle lives make idle minds. Idle minds creates depression and mental health issues - my perception.

Only you can be you and it is important that you are you, not what others say you should be, provided no physical harm is done to others. Anyone can achieve, and I mean anyone, some small targets, others much bigger targets, only you are your own obsticle, but work within your own abilities, do not over stretch your ambitions, but push yourself to achieve, be something, not a nothing. Something is positive, nothing is negative and negativity gets you no where. Society attitude through school, work and generally have made me quite independent and I have achieved, not via financial standing or fancy career but I have achieved by watching, listening and starting small and expanding further as knowledge & confidence in the subject grew. I am reliant on the medical profession and other areas where the law stipulates, otherwise I have taught myself many aspects within life.

I previously lived on the past, negativity, dwelled on what others said and implied and that was the main root cause of my situation. I did not adopt an attitude that so many did, me, be yourself and throughout my adult hood since leaving school I allowed my self to be manipulated, moulded by others. This is what you do, your a man this is what society expects of you and so on. I now utilise the past as a positve reminder for the future only. I do not dwell upon what has been. I have been shown by my counsellor how to box up past negatives and park on the shelf. The past is part of my life, all lives, but you cannot wind the clock back, you cannot change what is now history. Life moves on, it always does. There is a future and only you control the future. We left city life in 1998 for rural quiet, a desire we both aspired to, after all Fell Walking is our preference. It did give me a boost but society is society and by 2010 I had had enough, my life even to me was very negative, basically on hold, little enthusiasm and in 2011 sought help not before it had done damage to me. I do not dwell on others opinions or views, try to accommodate these views and opinions, worry about statements, sentences, people etc. Afterall they don't. As I have always been, my initial contact is of being friendly, open and approachable. Society these days will criticise you what ever you do but those that criticise just for being different, an individual, never look at themselves. No one is perfect in the eyes of another as a quote on this site states.

 

"In the end, we only regret the chances we didn't take, the relationships we were to scared to have and the decisions we took too long to make. There comes a time in your life when you realise who matters, who doesn't, who never did and who always will. So don't worry about the people from your past, there's a reason why they didn't make it to your future."

 The above quote came from a wall of a restaurant. The owner did not know the authors.

Depression and associated issues, especially by events by others does leave you a damaged person and with permanent scars. I was shown that the secret was to have a proactive, positive life and look to the future not the past, to be youself, accept yourself. We are all individuals, unique but part of a society. So long as no physical harm is done to others, just be you. You cannot change you, move with positivity, don't let others hinder you. I had to control what came in and out of my life for me, not others. All issues for people are different, rape, domestic violence, sexual harrasment, even witnessing an horrific scene etc. Thankfully mine were none of these serious types of issues but simply dealing with wider society, its cutting remarks, society politics within groups, keeping myself to myself and beoming very introvert to a point self confidence, a belief in myself ceased. I would constantly worry about what I said, what others said, I am doing what others expect of me etc. I sought professional help for mine, and perhaps easier to resolve than for others but help is out there and for men there are support charities. I list some under Men: Advocates for Male Equality. My scars of the past are there, it is how you let them control you for the future that matters.

For me, after 2011, I made a steady increase with my new positive self. Yes would slip back but each slip back became wider and wider and as time past I grew stronger and stronger within myself. It can be done. The world will not do it for you, the world is full of selfish individuals, only close friends the exception, so it must and can only come from yourself.

I will not go into detail about my past, it is boxed, parked, the scars controlled. I have been in two working environments which were female dominated and headed by a female and expereienced all that women complain about male dominated environments and not acknowledged. I have worked for aggressive bosses who would pick on any gender. I have encountered aggressive and abusive females along side males. I have been used by manipulaitve bosses and work colleagues, to drop you when you are not needed, to deny when things get problomatic, it is no different for either gender and yes, this was another issue mu Counsellor had to help me with when I persistently see understanding, expectation, allowances for femles but for men, oh grow up, man up, what is the problem etc. My expereince of real life shows me that both genders are as good and as bad each other, both capable of exploiting situations to their advantage. This is human nature, has been here all along through the millenia, just different tools to use as society progresses through time.

Your personality is what it is and for me I have to be careful not to allow the wider world which is still there, arrogance, intolerance, disrespectful, self centered attitude and dominance of others that caused me personal grief and affected me as a person and push me back. But I can assure you I am now me, and as time passes on from 2011 I get more and more determined that my life, our life as a marriage is for us, not for you, soicety out there.

 

Me: My Personality and Character

 

My name is Jeremy Hutchinson, North Yorkshire, England and I have achieved alot mainly due to societies attitude that I became quite independent via self teaching as you will see in this section of this page. A man who lives in the 21st Century, and happily accepts equality but for all. A man who accepts everybody has a right to be themselves, individuals and access to all aspects of human life. I have empathy for any true discrimination for either gender even if it does not affect me directly. It does for others. Sadly within society too many are obsessed with their own discrimination, perceived or real to be concerned for others. At times they say they are but watch and observe them in actual motion.

I am a man who does not portray the stereotypical male attitude. Not ashamed to show his true personality which under human gender stereotyping touches a feminine approach at times where I show compassion, understanding, try to be helpful. I do not have this dominant male aggressiveness but thinks, respects, appreciates the quality of one selfs presentation, home etc yet remains practical and stays within the 'real world' and applies common sense to daily life not simply because it is or another says it has to be. Rules and Laws excepted! I am not effeminate, weak, but prefer a more quieter lifestyle, not this macho image, rough sports, male evenings etc and cannot abide competition. Friendly drive, aim, yes but serious competiveness, no. Although I will help and understand others as I have always these days, since 2011, if I am vilified, disrespected etc then I will admit, I will stand my ground and put you on the outside of my life. Others in pursuit of their rights state it is their human right. I say we all have our human rights.

I garden for a living since 2001,not in skirts. Due to our lifestyle not based upon debt, labels, trends, luxury holidays and cars, in 2012 when my wife retired my garden business was reduced to one day a week. Prior to 2001 I tried another form of self employment to no success and prior to 1998 I was office based, a direction pushed into when leaving school because others thought it was for me ignoring my practical side. Trying to redirect my life in my early working career was not possible, doors were closed by then. So much for this male priviledge I often have quoted. Society stereotypes and expectations are in play for both genders. In 2012 I retained a handful of clients and my wife and I do one day a week, occassionally adhoc extra where garden demands needed. I created this garden business off my own back and achieved full client workload without advertising since created back in 2002. I did this by being reliable and hard working.

I do all our own DIY which includes a barn renovation/conversion to be part of our house where a good 95% of the work is done by me, footings, foundations, block work, pointing underground piping, electrics, plumbing, stone work, roofs, new door/window openings, carpentry which includes hand built internal doors and door frames, fitted bedroom wardrobes etc. The only aspect I cannot do is plaster and obtain help where more than one person is required. I do bathrooms, kitchens and some of this DIY work is in skirts. I am not afraid to tackle any job on the house. I draw plans, liaise with Planning and Bulding Control.

We would not be able to purchase our house and its location as it currently stands, but we had a desire to be in this area and buying the house for updating, renovating and using myself taught skills it became possible. It also needed years for it to grow and develop, remember we have a desire to not have debt, unlike many in society. That was our choice and it has paid off.

In 2000, prior to having professionally installed, by law, Air Source Hearting in 2016, I installed our own central heating system via a multi fuel log burner. This central heating powered 9 radiators via pump circuit and gravity circuit as well as the hot water tank. I recall having an argument with a plumber in a plumbers merchants when he heard me ask for minimum and maximum thermostats and said impossible on a log/coal burner. I stood my ground and put him in his place, basic electrical wiring with these thermostats would allow the hot water tank to turn the circulation pump off when cold to allow gravity to feed hot water to the tank and then switch the pump back on when fully heated. I had done my research and it saved us constantly monitoring the tank. This system I installed lasted 16 years before we repalced with modern efficient air Source heating. I achieved my DIY skills, really amateur builder by my own initiative and keeness to learn and succeed by talking to professionals, research and yes, trial and error in the early stages, starting small, easy targets working to much bigger ones as confidence and experience developed. This even includes fitting out the house with a businesss grade LAN network including communications cabinet with 2 routers, port switches, LAN sockets, WiFi repeaters, again self taught, self reseasrched and self set up. All 6 core cables officially wired to sockets and the communications cabinet rear socket board. 

In early 2012 I researched and embraced solar power panels and had 4Kw system fitted at the time the biggest array permitted on domestic dwellings. Even that was critisicised by many at the time and directly. To me it was not only a contribution to the environment but an investment, the FIT payments provides an 18% return for us! In early 2016 after a years research, followed with a further years wait for my finally preferred installer to become trained to fit a particular brand of air source heating I had decided was the one. Again we were criticised over as too many it was not normal and others had negative expereince, usually due to lack of research and insulating work. I held out and after one full year reduced our heating costs by 75% but I did spend a fair bit of time insulating a 300 year old house external walls. Done internally so that meant door frams, book shelves, electrics and window cills needed altering. Our outside walls are now rated as 0.2 insulated, 1 being uninsulated. Provided installed correctly and insulated well it does work. Ignore the negativity you hear. I had also kept an eye on batteries for solar panels but my installer for solar who I trust told me to hang on. In early 2018 he gave me the nod and so February 2019 a 14Kw battery was fitted. It is amazing how much power it contributes once the solar panels go off line in the evening. Not really effective mid November through to March, but since March any warm day power goes in, sunny days more so. Between it and the panels we regularly have energy free days in the Spring Summer and many days of low energy useage via the grid. Only cold and very cloudy days is the battery not in play, mainly winter.

ICT has always been of interest but only for practical domestic purposes, use to build my own before laptops and tablets but quite capable of solving any related issues and repairs. This came about after being diddled by a computer shop in my early adult life. That was not to happen again. I can do basic hardware repairs with laptops, but tablets no, just solve software issues or Apps as they call them. Computer games never a pull for me. Been on a few but not actively.

Fell walking has always been a huge pull for me. I even do that at times in a skirt. For years we walked on our own, fitting in around full time work. In 2014 we joined the ramblers and walk with several differing clubs and happily travel upto 2 hours from home. We still walk quite often on our own. I do not wear a skirt on club walks or if the weather is cold, windy or potentially wet for obvious reasons.

My skirt wearing as man, in fact invading the female wardrobe as they have mens, is another aspect of determination that I will do what I want, achieve what I want and not let others say I cannot. Why? I will dress and wear what I want, how I want as a man for me, not what others say I should do. Women these days certainly would not, in fact do not accept such questioning and dictation as to what they wear or appear.

In 2016 my wife and I took up volunteering. There is a specific page on this site about this aspect, a man in a skirt volunteering. Again this gives me challenges that are suitable with my personality, for learning and activities it involves for boosting confidence, determination and well being. I do that 100% skirted.

I have no interest in motor sports or cars, a car is a tool and has to be practical to be part of my life. In fact I like to consider myself self sufficient in life being reliant on the medical profession only including dentists and opticians. Lifes experience has made me like this. On the quieter side I prefer computers, gadgets, reading of good documentaries, factual books, or novels based around facts. With TV I prefer a good film and dramas that is of interest, good story line and preferably factual and good factual documentaries on Earth, Space, Science, Geology etc. I mortally hate sport and avoid all such programmes although I do acknowledge the talent of many in some sports. I like wine and beer drinking, meals in pubs/restaurants but not pub games and gossip. I enjoy theaters, classical concerts, folk concerts, but not opera singing. I prefer small mature mixed groups for good conversation not gossip or bragging rather than all male or all female which both are as bad as each other for being one sided and self opinionated. I have no time for those who live in a narrow minded world, set opinions regardless of facts or evidence with, in my view, limited conversation on only predominately one subject like, sport, cars, guns, monitoring of others lives etc. Thankfully my wife is the same, differing slightly in personal tastes of music, colour or pattern. I am told I do not suffer fools gladly! We both do a lot of fell walking, repeating some in a few years time but like to see other areas of the UK for walking and cover areas quite extensively via differing paths. We both like variety in life.

BBQ

All in all I'm just an ordinary human being whether I have a skirt on or not. My life's preferences are still the same with a skirt on or not! I know myself, my outer self and inner self. I don't question my sex. I know I am a 100% biological male, I just question societies gender labels, its social constructs especially specific to a gender, relaxed to the other. My wife and I have friends who socialise with us privately and publicly, with new friendships formed since 2011 and my skirt wearing going public includes theater, concerts, restaurants, doctors, dentists, hospitals etc dressed as we prefer, just like everyone else, especially women.

 Those that cannot cope are narrow minded, selfish and yes bigots as well for they do what they criticise others. Other people for other reasons get similar indirect and direct comments and at times far worse than what I have experienced, eg differing colours, even differing religions, size, height, glasses etc. It's part of the course for being a member of a intelligent race called humans. On BBC Breakfast, 28th July, 2013, I heard an interview with a Paraolympic athlete regarding the anniversary Olympic event in London and was asked if he now received admirers after his success in 2012 whilst out in public. He said he does, but he mostly gets stares when he walks around with his artificial limb on show.

 

Yes it is difficult going against the expectations of labels and stereotypes for men within society. I needed to push this to one side and dwelling upon others views and opinons in many aspects of life and did so from 2011. In this current era when women still feel they are discriminated against, they are in certain areas of life, where media and movements give support, provide, and reasoning yet men are questioned, riddiculed, told to stand tall and be a man etc and claimed to have no life problems. Society should be more open minded and see just what a hypocritical mess it is in for both genders. I expand further in this area, see menu left hand side Men: Advocates for Male Equality.

Bowel Cancer

In Oct 2016 I was diagnosed with Bowel Cancer. No symptoms except one week before seeing the Doctor my stools went loose and the weekend of seeing the Doctor violently sick. The news knocked me back and for 4 days the positive and proactive person I had become went and I became bitter, questioned and negative. Why me? I was very fit, healthy, never smoked, alcohol minimal. Then I managed to take stock of the situation and the positive and proactive person returned. This was just another card of life dealt to me and at the time I may not be able to cure the cancer but I certainly could provide myself and my wife positive mental attitude now. The Polyp was very large and very cancerous to the Bowel Wall but thankfully not spread. All tests and scans confirmed this but left a question mark - had a cell embedded into the wall not detected. I choose surgery cut out that part of the bowel and no chemo. The removed section was confirmed clear but until removed that one cell was always probable. It has been suggested that my positive mental attitude allowed the body to internally fight the cancer as a very cancerous Polyp touching the Bowel Wall should have left something on the wall even if not spread. Six weeks after diagnosed the surgery was done, 4 months less 2 days after surgery I climbed Mount Snowdon, a 10 mile walk, 1085 meters asl and the 2nd highest mountain in the British Isles with a shared 8 hour return day car journey - with the blessing of my Consultant. I think I could have done it 4 weeks earlier but my Consultant knew I would recovery quickly but felt 3 months was pushing it. Early month 3 after surgery, I had climbed a grass fell with about 1000ft of climbing which I did not mention but my then fitness level gave me confidence. I did it again later in month 3. Throughout those 6 weeks pre surgery I was bright, cheerful and positive, staff were remarking it is rare to be seen with patients, especially men but such an attitude helps with recovery if a recovery is possible. My recovery post surgery was sheer determination that my life would come back noting that I had had major surgery and healing even within a positive atmosphere takes time.

That incident provided me with another life learning lesson and any problem should be tackled full on with drive and positivity. Yes one day a situation may come my way that has a different outcome but there is nothing anyone can do with that but you can still control your life and how you tackle a problem. Life isn't perfect for anyone, especially those that claim it is. It is hard and at the end of the day it is only yourself that can succeed for you, others can only help.

 

Conclusion

For years I had lived a life of depression, initially not noticing, when I did ignored it. My life through school and work life pre 2011 was moulded by others expectations, labels and stereotypes. Even at leaving school the pressure put upon me as to what type of job I should do because of my qualifications even my gender, yes men are gender assigned too by society, forced me into admin type work not a practical based work that I showed and did develop myself in my early adult years, eg ICT and DIY. In 2011 I had to seek help via GP, who put me on strong anti depressants and Counselling on 3 issues of life, one being a choice of clothing just like others were now enjoying - freedom of choice and expression. The Counsellor was exceptional and I still thank her for giving me my life. This period I was in a very dark hole and gave my wife concerns when in my mutterings and ramblings, suicide was mentioned frequently. A good friend close to us was helpful along side my wife and other friends were there by telephone due to distance. although by 2011 all my interests had stopped, for some reason which I still cannot explain to this day, my self employment I never let be affected and my clients had no inclination. My Counsellor told me this is why I had a further lower level of depression to go with regards suicide. This I found incredible as to me my life was a black hole, it was technically switched off.

Having started wearing skirts in public in early 2011, we avoided our immediate locality by some miles but I was spotted. What is the random outcome of that, bearing in mind population and area size. Was it a bad thing, actually no. I was the topic of local gossip for 7 days and it was quiute suprising how many were supportive of it and prepared to say so in public. Yes quite a few who had intereacted with me over the preceeding 10 years stopped, but many didn't and since quite a few who I had never met before pass the time of day with me now. It helped me realise very early with my recovery that we can put obsticles in our mind ourselves and yes you are not always accepted by some but others do.

My Wife and I - Friends WeddingI did not look back from this point in time and the anti despressants dropped by gradual process. My life blossomed under the Cousellors guidance in 2011 and 2012. It was interesting to note those who showed concern and those that did not when my serious depression was mentioned during this period of a state of black abyss. I find this on soical media, as even this subject is ranked as to priority of recogituion.

We have lost contact with two sets of casual friends, for me personally acquaintences, since 2011. They met a new me who was prepared to answer and also highlight hypocrisy. My skirt wearing was one such area and even my wife had to say to one to look at her self before crisicising.

In my life pre 2011 was not wasted. Life expereinces made me quite independent. No issues with ICT, a competent DIYer, really ameteur builder. My walking experience all over Northern England, Scotland and Wales and I do get a big buzz out of all three. It is this that stopped me deteriorating to levels others in society have been driven too pre 2011. Active in 4 walking clubs and 3 music societies. Dine out and attend theaters either with friends or on our own.

Humans are humans and human nature will always show power, dominance, aggresion towards others that an individual or group do not like about another individual or group. I have found the strength to cope with it and allow myself to be me and have views, opinions and to be an individual yet a respecting individual towards others ignoring those or standing up to those that cannot respect. I do not find it easy but I do not let society dictate to me with individual hypocritical preferences and expectations noting the rules of society. I as an individual may not have been subject to sexual abuse, male rape, domestic violence, stalked etc but I have been the subject of societies emotional abuse, been affected psychologically and had my life suppressed due to others and societies hypocritical expectations. I often read of other mens lives plighted by others expectations, but I have also met some in actual real life. At the end of the day we are no different to the affected men of sexual assualt, male rape, domestic violence, stalked etc.

It is often said what we would do if we had our life again. I am basically happy with my life style. I have never had the urge for high powered careers, society politics, massing money etc. What I would change is that I would be me from the start and not let society manipulate my life when it doesn't for others. Remaining positive and focused does help and in many aspects of life. Life can be cruel with the card it deals us and we can often think if only, what if etc. It is important that that we remember that we may have to deal with the cards of life given to us but it is how we deal with them that can define us or the actual outcome. For more serious issues there is professional support via many charities, some of which I do list on this site under Men: Avocates for Male Equality.

 

I am an individual, like we all are, but unlike many, I am an individual, not a 'Lemming'. 

 

My Wife  I Hampton Court 02

 

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