I’m glad you took a stand and dropped the stockings, then- I hope, found safety on the other side of freeing yourself. A lot of society’s time and energy is wasted in lazy criticisms of non-conformers- in clothing [as well as everything else]. I’ve had to admit I am at fault as well, I might find myself thinking something wasn’t right if my bank teller or financial planner was in jeans and t-shirt. The cultural and symbolic memes of clothing get deeply embedded when people don’t rebel.
I’m roused by your article, though, to admit my own hypocrisy. I need to stop suspecting others’ commitment to good sense and shared values if they don’t adhere to a dress code!
This is not a huge step, but when you are blind you can’t see it. I don’t want to wear jeans all the time anymore- I want to wear a cute dress. Haven’t had my fill of it yet, or had it be an uncomfortable badge of restriction or vulnerability. But I would like others I am with to keep their focus on the work we are doing or the fun we are having together rather than react to my clothes or gender expression!
In the 60s we celebrated countering the useless standards given by authority figures, and as you have shown, it is worth doing.