I love when modern people discover an ancient practice and think its a new thing.
"Combining Buddhist practices with ancient spirit worship, the individuals profiled in 'Transcendents: Spirit Mediums in Burma and Thailand,' are mostly biological men who, during religious ceremonies, wear makeup and clothes traditionally associated with women. A number of the mediums live permanently as women, with most of them openly and exclusively attracted to men."
Oscar Holland, CNN -- How spirit mediums blur gender lines in Southeast Asia
Cross-dressing among Shamanistic practitioners is much older than Buddhism, and while it seems to be making a cyclical return, it's never actually gone completely away. It's also not at all restricted to Thailand having equivalencies with practices of Native Americans, Siberian shaman and Chinese Woo practitioners. I'm not sure if there is any cross-dressing among the South American shaman, but I wouldn't be surprised. It was reported among ancient European practitioners as well.
Trans people/crossdressers are sacred in Hindu scriptures. So, it is very ancient. They're seen as spiritual and special. Lemme see if I can find that doc on it.
Well in shamanic practise the Shaman is appropriating the divine feminine because there were female Shamans which became heavily dominated by men so they dressed as women in the same sense that catholic priests wear frocks.