My boyfriend is a heterosexual man, and I’m a cisgender woman. We’re both in our 20s. Because of quarantine, we’re in each other’s space all the time, and I noticed he had wigs and women’s clothing. I didn’t want to snoop, so I asked him what was going on. We got into a huge fight where he said I had snooped and was invading his privacy. I said I hadn’t and that he wasn’t being as sneaky as he thought he was. He said that I had betrayed his trust and called me names. I was so shocked, because I wasn’t even upset that he cross-dresses. It’s not a big deal. I just wish he didn’t have to hide it. I’m sure he was caught off-guard from being discovered, and I’m guessing that because of the stigma he hoped no one would find out (something that seems impossible to me, considering we live in a one-bedroom apartment).
Since then, we have been able to talk a bit more, and he even showed me some pictures. It turns out he had been wearing my lingerie and taking pictures in it. This is the part that upset me. He yelled at me about an invasion of privacy, but he found it perfectly acceptable to go through my drawers and help himself. The whole thing has been pretty shocking overall. I want to support him and for him to be comfortable sharing if he wants to. But he now thinks that I think he is gay (I don’t) and that I’m disgusted by him (I’m not). How do I approach something like this? I want him to feel loved and safe, but I also know we need to draw boundaries together and find out what we are both comfortable with.
—Too Close for Comfort