There are 2 ways we find validation.
1) We work to be stealth and move about our day in our target gender without anyone ever guessing our pasts.
2) We allow people into our world and find acceptance as who we are.
Every time my wife and I got out for a drink, out for a dinner or out to a store and someone identifies me as female in the course of our interactions you can see a look of pleasure appear over my face. I exhale as though finding acceptance is like being relieved of the pressures of not feeling right for so long. Kind of like the pressure cooker was built up beyond it's recommended bursting point. What I've come to realize within the broader scope of things is that I feel much more satisfaction in someone "knowing" my past and truly accepting me as Karyn. To me, this shows the purity in the heart that I've often wondered was missing from the human race.
In countless instances that someone didn't know my story or someone who knew "Kev" but hadn't seen him in a long time find out, have a great reaction to the change and yet still accept me for what is in my heart. That in my opinion is the sincerest form of acceptance. It at times has lent itself to being some of the most humorous and memorable interactions I've had.
Walk down the street at any given time as a transsexual and you feel like the whole world is staring at you, so we really embrace those times we realize that stealth simply gives us the anonymity that we need. But in any given room of people we will always be guarded over our crazy little secret as though it is a juicy tidbit just lying in wait to be used against us.
We feel this way because in these circumstance we have no way to judge what may be in any given individuals heart. Someone who was nice to you 5 minutes before could suddenly look down at you because they have learned something that they don't understand or simply don't agree with. What a shame isn't it? Validation is great in any form but it is those that accept us knowing that all our flaws make us who we are, those are the people that are worth recognizing and to me that is the best form of validation.