Thursday 30 December 2010

Fighting Autogynephila

A younger me

In 1995 I discovered the internet and created one of the first transgendered web sites. It was called the Sussex Transgender Page. My main reason for creating the site was to find someone like me, or identified in the same way as I did with the transgendered scene. I got lots and lots of emails and made some good friends. It was very flattering to be out at a TG event and have someone asking if I was Cheryl from the Internet. In all of the years the page was running I did not meet anyone who was like me. Was I that unique with my outlook, I'm not sure?

During these early years I also so wanted a girlfriend who would accept me, yet I had this burning desire to feminise myself. So many inner conflicts which I thought I would be able to untangle to clear my head.

Many years ago I visited a well established transsexual support group. It was made very clear that this group meeting was for true transsexuals only and not transvestites. This is back in the days when you were either TV or TS. I was rather intimidated about going as I was not too sure what side of the transgenered fence I was one. My only exposure to 'true transsexuals' was seeing Caroline Cosey, April Ashley and other types who looked like real women. Anyway the support group was a real eye opener for me. Everyone there was a bloke in a frock, manly men dressed up with heavy orange  foundation makeup all reitterating with each other that they are women. Some would have you believe they were realer than real women for one reason or another. Many could quote from the bibles of transsexuality as to their condition. 'I only wear the uniform of my sex', I heard one say. Another could be heard saying 'Oh he was just a TV, not like me who is a TS'. Mini skirts and high heels were very popular amongst the group, but a complete denial of any form of fetish. I had no idea that the human mind could fool these poor souls into such a delusioned condition. On leaving I realised that I too must appear like these people. I was cured for six months, the shock took away all ideas and desires about being female. But the feelings did return.

Even today I'm instantly taken back to memories of this support group meeting when I hear career transsexuals lecture as to how someone like me should feel or even say on the net. I instantly create an image of the very sad confused and unemployable people I met at the support group. 

All these years later I still don't have any answers. The problem defies all logic and no matter how hard I try to reason with myself I'm still all mixed up.

I've often thought that there is an inner fight within myself. There is the everyday self I present to the public and the hidden self that needs to be expressed but finds the whole idea of a full scale transition rather terrifying. So I'm always limited to 'safe' surroundings and tranny circles.

I'm currently at the stage where the choices are:

1. Stay as I am, live out the role that is expected of me. Get used to feeling that I'm on the outside looking in all the time, with no answers to my feelings.

2. Get some guts and have ago at a transition into female role.

So what prevents me from moving forward with this inner desire? Guilt. A great feeling of letting those I know down. A sense that I would have lost the inner fight, and have chickened out of being a male. A fear of public rejection, who wants to walk around with people pointing at you, that's no life.

Plus there is the nasty autogynephilia that I feel has been pushing me all along. Does autogynephilia exisit in transitioned transgendered individuals? If I transitioned I could be non-op or post-op as the public view of me would not notice or care either way.

How would I feel inside? If AGP was still inside me post tranistion would I feel that I've done all I can but still feel motivated by it?

Or perhaps would AGP be suddenly switched off, would this make me happy being clear of this demon obsession? Or worse if the motivation is switched off then I'd be female but with no desire or drive to actually continue being female.

I would love to hear from life stories from those who have transitioned where AGP was at some stage or still if a driving force.

Anyway bugger all this nonsense. I'm going to dress up........

Sunday 19 December 2010

Hormones For The Experienced Autogynephiliac?

I thought I would write a piece on my blog about the use of hormones for  people who identify as autogynephilic or a form of crossdreamer.

I've experienced the obsessional transformation fantasy of  becoming a female since first memories. Perhaps I should say I've suffered from this obsession from a very early age. The interest has always had sexual overtones and has slowly become worse and worse as I got older. Yes I was experiencing sexual fantasies from first memories, which is not as rare as you would first think with young children. At such a young age I simply thought it was something I could conjure up magically which would make me feel nice and also arrest the fantasy for a while. 

Anyway all these years later I guess the obsession is as bad as its going to get, it really can't get any worse can it?  For me personally I have always wanted to control or dampen this crazy obsession. I suppose I have problems accepting this side of myself and feel great shame and guilt about the whole thing.

I've had access to hormones on and off over the years as a way of providing myself with some form of solution to my problem. The perceived view was that I could dampened the obsession whilst also at the same time fulfill the fantasy. The fantasy has always been very strong and demands that I enact it out as realistically as I can in real life. 

In my early twenties I visited a private psychiatrist who gave me access to the magic pills within 10 minutes of talking to him. This was Russell Reid, or as many at the time would say Uncle Russ with the Smarties. He was later disciplined over 'rushing' patients through the system which came to light with the Charles Kane post op TS case. So I took the full dose of the magic pills for a little while, lost my sex drive very quickly, got very scared and tried to pull myself together. I repeated this often over the next few years.

In later years I came to the conclusion that a low dose hormone option may be better suited to me (the low dose was 50mcg patches) . This was via the skin patches which are much safer and you only have to change them twice a week. After a short while I did feel much better and happier all round about myself. I maintained a sex drive which was not as urgent as before. My mental thought patterns also became clearer with general thinking and analysis throughout the day. I also felt that I was doing something I has always wanted to do. I felt happier that I was able to 'touch the femininity' far better than I had ever before and I generally felt very satisfied with myself.

During this time of feeling much happier I felt that hormones without physical role transition could be accomplished. After all my head was much clearer, the shame and guilt had pretty much lifted and my sexuality was much more normal. Did I really want to tun my life upside down over this obsession? I was able to focus on the idea of loving relations rather than the obsessional tranny fetish fantasy stuff.  I still had the desire to become female but it was under control.  I discussed this with my Doctor who had given me the hormone patches. He said there is not such thing as being 'inbetween', which is what you are trying to achieve. 'You are one thing or the other', he went on. I was not so sure.

So time marches on and before I know it a couple of years has gone by. During this time I maintained my happy emotional state. 

Yes I was still dressing as Cheryl as it was still a desire but controlled.  I was (am still am) living 95% of the time a a male. Then strange things started to happen.

My hair had grown long as I had always wanted long hair but was always worried about having it long,  hormones allowed me to want to grow my hair without shame. I found a very pleasant female hairdresser who did my hair in a female style without me even asking. I guess she simply thought the style would suit me. I still go to her and she simply fusses with my hair into a feminine style. She only knows me as Paul and knows nothing about Cheryl. She does know a TS friend of mine so I guess she has put two and two together. During the chat with her she always asks 'how is your partner?',  I presume she thinks I'm gay as 'partner' is often used as a polite was of asking 'how is your boyfriend?'. I'm not gay by the way. 

One day whilst out shopping I was at the checkout and realised I needed some replacement razor blades. They were behind the counter and had to be asked for. I asked for the Gillette set pointing towards the wall and the lady at the checkout passed me over the woman's set. So I said no not those one the ones next to it. Another woman's set was passed back to me. I had to actually say 'no the mens razor blades'. It was not until I got home that I realised that I must have been seen as a female, even though I was dressed as my male self and just asked in my normal voice.

Another thing happened in Donatello Restaurant in Brighton. I sat down to have a meal as my male self and the woman on the table next to use lent over and asked my friend if I was a man or a woman. This person was a little odd herself, she seemed mentally disabled in some way so as not to have any inhibitions. So that was a little embarrassing.

Many other times in shops similar things would happen. At Blockbuster I asked about a film title and the assistant said 'she wants this title'.  Whilst out walking through the town centre I was often approached by people doing surveys, 'oh excuse me madam' they would say as I walked past.

For the life of me I could not really figure out how people were making such mistakes about my gender. After all I was dressed as a guy, walked like a guy and sounded like one. Maybe my own perception of myself was really so very wrong. During my whole life I thought it would be impossible for me to dress as a woman and pass in public, and here I am going around in public making no effort to appear as a female dressed as a male and being called madam. My facial appearance looked the same to me despite close friends telling me that I was looking girly, I did not see it myself. I just thought I looked healthier.

So with all this happening to me was I pleased? You know I'm not sure what I made of it all. There was a sense that anyone looking at me and seeing a female must be blind. But I do admit to getting a buzz and pleasure out of the whole idea. All I conclude is that there is much more to the perception of male or female to a person who sees you for the first time, other than clothes and makeup. 

If I study my body, it is more female like which I like. Sexual activities today are far more pleasurable than they were before and perhaps more female like. I don't need an erection and I like my small breasts and nipples. I'm currently not taking hormones at present as I need to understand how far I want to take things. 

Making your mind up about what you are is so very difficult. Any help from readers would be most appreciated.

Anyway here is a picture of me in my normal day to day male look. Taken yesterday in the garden. I built a snowman for the first time since I was a child.  So do I look funny and odd?

If you're stuck for something to watch tonight, go on over to Tranisa and watch a film.