Skip to main content

some of what I have learnt thus far...

When I was trying to understand myself and where I fit into the gender spectrum I spent a lot of time researching and reading. My research included the work of Ray Blanchard and Anne Lawrence and their theories on autogynephilia which in turn led me eventually to Jack Molay’s wonderful Crossdreamers site where I found many interesting comments and stories from people very similar to myself..

One of the aspects that I learnt that I did not know before was that non crossdressing dysphorics and non dysphoric but AGP identifying posters mentioned that they read TG fiction and/or viewed imagery. Having never done this myself I could not relate but it made sense to me that a person desiring in some way to identify with or be the other sex (even temporarily) would need an outlet for their feelings.

I have come to conclude that the curiosity about what it might be like to be the opposite gender is not all that uncommon. I think many people flirt with the idea and go through phases in their lives. I have read so many stories now that I have come to realize that there are many permutations out there on this common theme which is actually borne out of human curiosity and playfulness. Many artists, poets and writers have imagined themselves as the opposite sex and many experimented with cross dressing and even with their sexuality.

The difference with the dysphoric is the feelings are much stronger and more persistent and they are not easily brushed or put aside. The stronger the feelings are the less the person is able to identity with their birth sex and the less they are able to function in their expected gender role.

But reading the many different postings on Crossdreamers made me realize the myriad of variations that existed were slightly different from my own and yet common in that they related to a wish to explore the other gender role more deeply; some people strongly dysphoric and being unhappy with their bodies and some not.

I also learnt that there were female dysphorics. They were ignored by Blanchard but they are there and I suspect because at the time that Blanchard was doing his work very few females were presenting for gender reassignment surgery. They exist and although not as numerous as MtF transsexuals they are very much a real phenomenon. One possible explanation for their reduced number could be that all foetuses initially start as females only to become male later in the gestation period. That could perhaps make for a less likely possibility that the individual might become gender dysphoric later on.

Regardless, what I had previously thought to be a more monolithic phenomenon,has turned out to be far more complex model than I ever imagined. It has opened my mind to the reality that the combination of gender and sexuality and nurture versus nature become uniquely combined in every individual. This makes for a highly unpredictable outcome as to what a person will do with their gender and sexuality later in life.

As we have seen in some people, this mixture even morphs over the course of the person’s lifetime.

I am very glad for the work that I have put into studying this topic over the last few years and am deeply impressed by the tenacity of both the human spirit and the bravery of people who defy societal taboos to be who they really are.

It really is quite inspiring.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

another coming out

Recently I had lunch with one of the young estimators who occasionally works with me here in Toronto. We were chatting about work and our respective lives when she queried about my love life:

“So how is it going on that front. Meet anyone interesting lately?”

I reflected for a moment and then said:

“My situation is a little particular and if you don’t mind I can share something about myself”

She leaned in a bit and told me to please go ahead.

“I am trans” I said matter of factly.

She looked at me and smiled and said:

“Really? That’s so neat”

She is 35 years old and a lovely person which is why I knew I could confide in her. I then added that I had been reflecting on whether I would switch companies and begin working as Joanna and although she is totally open she also knows how conservative our business can be. So I told her that if I did decide to it would definitely be under a different umbrella.

Then yesterday I was coming back to my place and the lady who rents it to me, who is abo…

feeling sexy

Here are the results of a recent survey of genetic women:

“A new hairdo, walking in heels and a glowing tan are among the things that make a woman feel sexy. Freshly applied lipstick, newly-shaved legs and a little black dress also have a positive effect on the psyche”

Are you surprised? I’m not because it is exactly the same list that makes transgender women feel sexy.

For a long time the idea was pandered about that transsexualism was rooted exclusively in aberrant sexuality. But of course you cannot separate the sexuality from the individual because that forms part of their overall makeup and the fact that genetic and transsexual women overlap here surprises no one.

We should also add here that women aren't always thinking about sex and neither are transgender women.

Pre transition transsexuals would not readily admit they found these things sexy because they were afraid to be seen as perverted men in front of gatekeepers who understood nothing about their condition.

Today we kn…

the risks of downplaying dysphoria

Kati’s comment on my post called “Doubting you are trans” got me thinking about the validity of our feelings and the importance of not downplaying them.

Make no mistake: gender dysphoria is real and you are not delusional and by trying to downplay our emotional need to express ourselves we are making a mistake.

At the same time, I am very realistic about what I am doing to treat my dysphoria and understand that I was not born physically female. However, the idea that gender identity is established exclusively through birth genitalia has been pretty convincingly debunked which means that gender and its expression should be left up to the individual and not to society. But unfortunately, we live in a world where disobeying the rules leads to suffering through persecution.

Transition is one way to treat your “gender expression deprivation anxiety” (thank you Anne Vitale for that wonderful term) but it is not the sole method. However, denying that the feelings are real is a recipe for dep…