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I share some reader feedback

I do not normally do this and but the risk of irritating one of my readers I have decided to print her question and my response because this is the kind of situation that many of us have found ourselves in and is very relevant. There is struggle involved in having gender dysphoria and no solution is simple but maybe by my sharing this we can add some more light on this difficult reality.

Q: "Hi Joanna,

This question is more of a personal question from me, I hope not too personal.

Seeing your more popular posts titled "looking past cross gender arousal" and "understanding the erotic component", I find myself in the predicament of being happily married for the last 22 years with two boys, 16 (high school) and 18 (college), a loving wife and an otherwise great life. It has taken a lot of time, and a lot of me messing up, but my wife is fine now with my cross-dressing, but not the erotic component.

The desire to express my feminine side has been there as long as I can remember, but was just a second thought every now and then. Over the last few years it has grown to a point where I regularly go out with a group of friends in Atlanta and when I travel on business. What once was a source of shame and hiding is now a source of pride and confidence.

The one component I cannot hide is the arousal I get from presenting in femme. I resonate with your posts on arousal and eroticism somewhat, but I know my arousal stems from the longing to have every possible experience a woman can have and that includes a sexual experience(s) with a man.

My wife and I calmly and rationally discuss our future and the possibility of divorce. Neither of us really wants divorce, but our wants and needs are diametrically opposed. The one thing I feel will be the culmination of my feminine experience is the one thing which may end our relationship. That one thing which I want may ignite an irresistible desire or may just be no big deal.

I ask you this because I read so many blogs of married cross-dressers and married transgender women that seem to make it work happily, but nobody seems to address the erotic side being transgender.

I have not been reading your blog all that long, but toady's post seems to indicate that you were married and now you are not and that you still work in male mode.

If you don't mind sharing, what happened in your marriage and did sexual desire as Joanna impact where you are now?

I am going to ask these same questions to some of the other bloggers I frequent in hopes of gaining some understanding of myself and how to handle these desires.

I appreciate your blog and insight.

All the best,

A: "Hi XX,

My marriage ended upon discovery that I was trans although there were other issues regarding compatibility and this was the straw that broke the camel's back if you will. My ability to perform sexually was also an issue since I am a transsexual and I discovered upon getting married that I could only achieve orgasm if I imagined myself as the woman. This was a harsh reality that I was not prepared to accept and it took me a long time to accept that I was not a normal man. So yes in a sense you could say that cross gender arousal did play a role in ending my marriage. We stayed married for almost 14 years but then she insisted on divorce which I of course granted to make her happy.

The fact is that the erotic component (otherwise known as cross gender arousal) of being a woman-loving transgender person is well documented and I have written countless posts on it over the lifespan of my blog which dates back to 2012. It was the most disturbing aspect for me as I worried that I was a perverted male rather than a person who suffered from gender dysphoria which is something one does not invent or catch but is likely a biologically sourced phenomenon.

It is not an easy life having dysphoria most particularly in our case as you are fighting against the current of trying to stay married to a woman who understandably wants no part of this.

The reality is that your sexuality has been permanently impacted by your dysphoria which was pre-existing when you entered puberty and nothing will change that. There are several options one of which is to transition fully while the other is to live in some form of compromise mode which I have chosen to do based on life decisions I made such as having a family.

Unlike you, I have no interest in pursuing a sexual experience with a man however you are not alone in this and many transsexuals change their orientation upon receiving HRT and if they fully transition many go on to lead fruitful lives as women.

I hope you and your wife can work this out although you would be in the statistical minority on this. Still the reality is that you cannot live in suppression for the rest of your life and it is not fair to her to have someone who is not being truly real.

I wish I could provide a better answer but this is the reality of our situation and feel free to contact me again.

All the best,



  1. I certainly hope your posting her note and your response doesn't upset her. As you say her situation is all too familiar and our mutual goal is to learn from and support each other.

    My story is so similar. I had cross-gender arousal since grade school (such as it was back then). I believe the arousal was almost a private celebration of how good and perfect it would be if I was raised as a girl. I fantasized every night as I went to sleep. And even though I wondered if my fantasies might be becoming habitual I just couldn't stop. In junior high I sewed approximations of girl clothing out of rags while my parents were out, and occasionally wore the panties I cut out from my mother's used stockings,

    All this continued and matured post-puberty. I thought I was suffering from an off-putting proclivity and was terribly ashamed. I went through periods of buying clothing, enjoying, and purging in disgust.

    When sexual with a woman (always) I also fantasized that I was the other woman in bed. This worked great for me but poorly for her since she didn't feel "like I was really there" with her, and that was correct. My second marriage lasted 21 years.

    To answer her question: "... what happened in your marriage and did sexual desire as [Emma] impact where you are now?"

    My transgender feelings and needs - that I was not allowed to manage in my sexual relations - led to the downfall of both marriages. And that spurred my second wife to push me to return to therapy where for the first time in my life I came out fully, first to him and then to my wife (we're since divorced), explore what it meant to be trans, if I was one, etc.

    Where I am now is that I am living as a woman and in my 5th month of HRT. I'm so much happier than I've even been. Sure, there are ups and downs - like anyone. I'd say that to be a trans woman is to have to confront many challenges and issues that are tough, and I continue with that today with my weekly electrolysis appointment and practice on my feminine voice.

    I came across a sentence about a week ago that really rang true for me. I repeat it often as a personal mantra:

    "Whenever we feel fear we're up against a kind-of wall... and on the other side of that wall is a kind-of freedom."

    When I feel fears I try to focus on the other side of the wall.

    1. thanks for sharing this Emma. Your input is always so open which I think can only help others who are struggling

  2. Joanna, thanks for sharing this. I will have it featured on T-Central.


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