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I just wanted to write in a thank-you note for “A Change of a Dress” (5/7), a feature that I greatly enjoyed. I would also like to applaud your maturely detailed and warm handling of so sensitive a subject, as opposed to the circus-spectacle approach typically employed by the media in general.

We can't make City Paper without you

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Your contribution is appreciated.

This “kink,” issue, phenomenon, whatever you wish to call it, is so beautifully real and is for many of us (myself included) a very deep and intimate expression from a part of ourselves we are forbidden to explore.

By virtue of gender, in my opinion, I think most men realize the kind of social retribution you can expect for sexually nonstereotypical behavior: indifference (in the luckiest of cases), ridicule, and scorn most commonly. However, further down the darker end of the spectrum, you might run into a couple of former high school chums of mine. Now grown men in their mid- to late 20s, they once made a weekly ritual of patrolling Hudson County Park in New Jersey at night for suspiciously deviant-looking suspects. Depending on the circumstances, they would either intimidate, harass, or physically assault these persons for sport. A range of public hostility as wide as this makes for a crushingly lonely existence as well as a fearful one for the “male” explorer of his own sexual bounds.

Control of territory that is as justifiably a person’s own to limit or expand upon as one’s own identity should not be a privilege exclusive to females.

As it stands, what might otherwise be for some a positive and fulfilling voyage to self-discovery is a solitary and painfully secret one. Thank you for alleviating some of that loneliness, even if only temporarily.

Gaithersburg, Md.