All the years of looking at women and knowing my reactions were different were obviously very confusing to me.
Most certainly my interest sexually was more fetish than anything else. In my teen years I dated a tall girl who always entranced me with how she slowly crossed her legs in my car. I wondered at the time why I wasn't more into her from a male sexual view point. I wanted those long hose covered legs teasing someone like she teased me.
I know now she had a couple other factors in play other than just "teasing" me. Fashion in those days was the mini skirt so she was trying to sit in the car as modestly as the skirt would allow. Add in those long legs and the problem of snagging her hose on something and the process was not so easy for a person who was essentially a farm girl.
As the years progressed panty hose became just an accessory and I'm still working on the smooth all in one motion a woman uses when she slides into a seat and crosses her legs in one motion.
In essence I've really have used hose as one example of a larger process.
Fetish became style for me years ago and now the first thing I may notice about a woman is the bag she is carrying.
The process carried an understanding of why both genders look at women. Men for obvious reasons and women too.
As with most things in life though, a woman's view of others is much more complex. Just one is style and many factors go into a woman's sense of style or lack of one. Going through that style process myself has finally led me to a greater understanding of my feelings so many years ago.
I simply was in a struggle to discover my own style in a feminine sense. In a much deeper sense the whole process could be one of the demarcation points between a cross dresser and a transgender person.
It all boils down to if I only knew then what I know now then life would have been so much simpler.
Then again, I'm sure I would have found something else to stress about!