1. Dressing in clothes of the opposite sex for sexual pleasure. A distinction is sometimes made between genuine transvestitism as someone who dresses as a woman because he believes he is a woman and behavioral transvestitism , a male crossdresser who readily accepts his maleness, even delights in it, but occasionally dresses in women's clothes.
2. The derivation of sexual pleasure from dressing or masquerading in the clothing of the opposite sex. Transvestism and homosexuality are sometimes erroneously lumped together as synonymous; in reality transvestites may be either heterosexual or homosexual.
ETYMOLOGY: From the Latin, trans , across, and vestis , garment, vestire , to clothe.
SEE ALSO: eonism; cross-dressing; fetishistic cross-dressing.
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