Originally posted 2017-01-10 09:41:40.
In the last few years the terms transgender, transsexual and transvestite have become more mainstream than anyone could have thought a scarce ten years ago.
But along the way they have become distorted and confused. So we need to look at them again and define what the words transsexual, transgender and transvestite actually mean.
Science has known for over a hundred years that some born males desire to dress as women. This may be partial secret cross-dressing, or it may be a compulsion to live as a woman all the time. Several attempts were made to categorise these. The best known was by Dr Harry Benjamin in the 1960s. Benjamin was one of the first to define ‘transsexualism’ as a desire to live full time in the gender opposite to the sex one was born, often with cosmetic affirming surgery. He posited a scale of intensity from occasional transvestism to full-blown transsexualism, in which the subjects strongly desired surgery to reshape their penises into simulated vaginas.
Benjamin did not dig into the causes of these phenomena; as a clinician his goal was to make his patients’ lives easier. Trying to understand the actual causes of the desire on the part of some born males to appear to be women some or all of the time, was left to later researchers, notably Dr Ray Blanchard, whose work remains definitive.
Benjamin’s scale, however, was a fudge. It obscured the fact that there were two completely distinct groups of males who were affected. One group was entirely homosexual in desire, the other was non-homosexual. This made his scale unreliable but unfortunately it is still promoted by, mainly, the non-homosexual group.
Dr Ray Blanchard proposed that there were two (and only two) underlying causes for the phenomenon of what he called transsexuals, meaning those born male who desired to appear to be women and who requested surgery. He did not research into the broader field of partial transvestism, except by limited extrapolation, simply because they were not presenting to him for help.
There were two distinct profiles of born-males coming forward for gender change therapy. One type tended to be, on average, smaller, lighter, slighter in relation to height, prettier, more feminine, and usually had little difficulty ‘passing’ as women. These individuals presented young, in their teens or early twenties, would have had a history of cross-dressing and other gender non-conforming behaviours in childhood, ie, before puberty, and most importantly, they were uniquely attracted to men, with whom they wished to have sex in the submissive role. This profile Blanchard termed HomoSexual TransSexual or HSTS. I call this group transsexuals or true transsexuals, the latter only when there is a need to distinguish them from the non-homosexual type, whom I call transvestites.
Blanchard suggested that transsexuals’ sense of gender was rooted in their sexual desire for men; nobody has ever convincingly challenged this.
The other type were not like that at all.
Transvestites were, on average, taller, larger, heavier in proportion to height, masculine, unfeminine and not pretty and had extreme difficulty ‘passing’. These individuals would have had no history of sex non-conforming behaviour before puberty, though they might report some fantasy experiments, and generally would have been seen as masculine. They were dominant and likely would have had typical masculine careers, often in the military. Their median age was older, 43 in Blanchard’s samples, and they were almost always married or had been so. They usually had children and often, the point of their ‘coming out’ coincided with the time that these became independent.
Blanchard, like others before him, had little difficulty in describing the first type, his HSTS. The second was far more complicated. He identified three different sexualities — gynephilic (attracted to women), bisexual and analloerotic. There were also at least four different categories. What they had in common was that the subjects became aroused by the idea of themselves as women. Blanchard categorised this type as autogynephilic, AGP, and defined autogynephilia, the root cause as:
‘A man’s propensity to be sexually aroused by the thought or image of himself as a woman.’
Men in men’s bodies
Thus Blanchard organised a baffling array of presentations into two: homosexual transsexual and autogynephilic. (I use the terms transsexual and transvestite.) This typology has been repeatedly supported and is the basis of today’s scientific understanding.
Further, Blanchard related transsexuals to feminine homosexual men and transvestites to cross-dressing fetishists. Almost all transvestites will have dressed in women’s clothing, or imagined themselves to be women, to masturbate or even have sex at some point in their past; Bruce ‘Caitlyn’ Jenner is a case in point. Almost all transsexuals will have wondered if they were effeminate homosexuals at some point in the past.
Blanchard identified Gender Dysphoria as the stimulus for a man’s perceived need to appear to be a woman. This he described as an overwhelming sense of discomfort with the ‘gender presentation’ society considered ‘normal’ for one’s birth genitalia. Here, Blanchard was simplistic. Gender Dysphoria does appear to factor into the need for transition, but it is clear that it is not quite the same for the two types. For transvestites it devolves to a loathing of their male organs and features, while for transsexuals it’s about being more realistic women in order to attract heterosexual male partners.
Very few transvestites are able to attract male partners, certainly in the West, who are not themselves autogynephilic, because they are too masculine. However the nature of their dysphoria — a detestation of all that is male about them — should give us a clue to the underlying psychological impetus.
This was never discussed by Blanchard, nor did he speculate as to why it was that some men, who were attracted to women, desired to appear to be women. He simply described and defined the condition. As I once wrote, one doesn’t really need to know how a patient came to break his leg in order to identify a broken leg. Blanchard seems to have concentrated on the symptoms, which was a perfectly sound and professional approach.
It does, however, leave open the question: what provokes autogynephilia?
Transsexuals are easy. Blanchard showed that morphologically, they were on average more ‘like women’ than men. They tended to be small, light, petite and feminine in features. They had other behavioural features that made them more similar to the average woman, such that Blanchard himself said that ‘When it becomes possible to test for this, HSTS will be found to have brains more like women’s than men’s.’ This was proven in 2011 in MRI studies by Rametti et al.
Transsexuals are feminine
Essentially, these individuals are so feminine that appearing to be masculine is
almost impossible for them; they could never be mistaken for a man. Their choice is to be seen by the culture around them as effeminate homosexuals or as beautiful women. With great enthusiasm, transsexuals adopt the latter.
Further, as has been documented for millennia and remains the case today, these individuals desire to play the receptive role in anal sex. They have absolutely no interest whatsoever in having ‘gay’ men as partners. (Don Kulick describes this well in his 1996 book Travesti, about Brazilian transsexuals.) They want masculine, powerful, dominant partners who will penetrate them. Very few have any interest in reciprocating and even if they do, they will not establish a relationship with a man who accepts penetration, because they recognise that he is as they are.
Transvestites, however, are much more complex. In the first place, in the West, perhaps 60% or more remain exclusively attracted to women. About 20% do become attracted to men, but only when in role as a woman. Blanchard called this ‘pseudo-bisexualism’, since it develops as a function of a growing pseudo-feminine character that the transvestite has invented. Transvestites are exclusively gynephilic until this character grows, so their bisexualism should be seen as a form of role-play. Then there are the analloerotics, whose sexual satisfaction is entirely internalised and who do not have sex with partners; nevertheless, their underlying attraction is gynephilic. So all transvestites are gynephilic at base.
But why is this happening? Doesn’t it seem a little strange? Why would a heterosexual male want to appear to be a woman? We know from the studies by Savic and Arver that transvestites have brains ‘indistinguishable from men’s’. They are NOT ‘women trapped in men’s bodies’, they are, as Dr Anne Lawrence put it, ‘men trapped in men’s bodies.’ Blanchard showed that their ‘sense of gender identity’ was rooted in their male sex drive, but he never explained how this was working.
Most researchers either ignored or struggled with this until recently. Dr Charles Moser, for example, suggested that androphobia (hatred of masculinity) might be the root, but this would not explain the 20% or so of pseudo-bisexuals who do pursue sex with men. However, he was on the right track.
One cause of autogynephilia might be a man’s masochistic sexual desire to be emasculated. This may be why, in some cases, transvestites hate their male genitalia.
Transsexuals do not hate their genitalia. In fact they may enjoy the sensations they get from them, in the same way as other males do. (What they will not usually do is play a masculine, penetrative role in sex.) For a transsexual, vaginoplasty is cosmetic. It’s like a nose job: it makes a more convincingly beautiful woman who then has a larger pool of available straight male partners. Transsexuals are not fools; they know that most heterosexual men reject penises. Remodelling their own into a facsimile of a vagina is designed to make them more attractive to these men.
Transsexuals do not seek to be emasculated, because they are already complete psycho-sexual inversions. They are, literally, transsexual. Their personalities are consistent in every way with the norm for the sex opposite to that which they were born. They are women in men’s bodies.
A transvestite is not like that at all. His sexual hit comes from emasculation: the destruction of his own masculinity. However, because they are heterosexual males, they cannot allow this to be done directly through sex in the way that a catamite would. Especially in the West, where homophobia is rampant, to give themselves to a man, while presenting as one, would be intolerable for them. These men have learned, so deeply that it is ingrained in their personalities, all the poisonous homophobia of Anglo-Saxon Protestant culture. They cannot, as adults, shake that off. It is a part of them and always will be.
A transvestite retains a hetero-normative male desire for women: he is gynephilic. When these men indulge in sex with other men, it is role-play, designed to affirm the pseudo-feminine artefact he has constructed. This is completely different from transsexuals, who desire men’s bodies, as Blanchard noted, exactly as a woman does. A transvestite is not, in any sense, psycho-sexually inverted. These are men with male sexuality, whose erotic target is misplaced.
A transvestite (AGP) is therefore not transsexual. So what is he?
In recent years, transvestite activists have tried to establish the use of the word ‘transgender’, but this is a political ruse. In the first place, the word has no scientific meaning, because science does not agree on what ‘gender’ is. Many consider that it is just a social construct, a set of behaviours and responses that are taught in childhood.
This is simplistic; if gender were not innate, then there should be cultures where there is no gender distinction between the sexes; but there are none. So gender must have an innate stimulus of some sort. And that stimulus is mate attraction. Feminine gender attracts masculine males and vice versa.
However, much of what we think of gender as, is indeed constructed. It’s about clothes, fashion, the social signals we give out to those around us. Transvestites, who are men, seize on these external signals and suggest that they are the totality of what gender is. In short, they suggest that it’s about wearing skirts. And please note that a transvestite is still a transvestite even if he doesn’t cross-dress. His physical body may not be wearing women’s clothes, but in his mental image of himself, he is.
Femininity, for these men, is therefore the absence of masculinity. It has no positive qualities in and of itself. It is merely that which is left, when masculinity has been erased. Their’s is a crass parody of femininity: literally, a man’s notion of what ‘being a woman’ might be.
Gender includes far more than appearance. It is about a whole set of behaviours, some of which are innate, but most of which are learned. However, they are learned in childhood and fixed by the time of teenage. One simply cannot ‘learn’ how to be a woman at the age of 25, 45 or 65. It’s too late. Only transsexuals can perform this trick; transvestites fail. It’s just a question of how badly.
A transsexual, on the other hand, can’t be masculine even if she tries; it’s a disaster for her. Her ‘transition’ is just to make sense of a life that cannot be resolved in any other way. In fact it is completion, as a woman. She desires to be penetrated by straight men and cannot be masculine. She is repulsed by the New Gay Man ‘scene’ and its constant insistence on faux masculinity — an exercise in pointlessness as far as she is concerned anyway, since she has no interest in gay partners. Becoming a girl is the only sensible solution to her dilemma. HSTS are never misogynistic; but they are in competition with natal women for men as sexual and romantic partners; and because they retain all of a male’s drive, they pursue the goal of feminine beauty with breathtaking determination.
Transvestites have none of this. Put simply, a man with a beard wearing a dress is a man with a beard wearing a dress. Gender is more than just a nice print frock and some lipstick; these men are not ‘transgender’. So what are they? They are men in women’s clothing: transvestites.
Transgender has been popularised as a term, by AGP activists, to blur the difference between true transsexuals (Blanchard’s HSTS) and transvestites (his AGPs.) In reality there is no similarity between the two types; one is of genuinely psycho-sexually inverted born males, the other is of men who want to pretend to be women to satisfy a fetish for masochistic emasculation.
A moment’s thought should tell you that men who feel that appearing to be a woman is the gravest insult they can attract to themselves — as masochists — must be profoundly misogynistic. Like all masochists, they gain sexual release from that action which they find most demeaning. For some it is to be whipped and tortured and for others to eat faeces; but for a transvestite it is to pretend to be women.
We should stop, at once, using the word ‘transgender’. It is a meaningless term that actively demeans women and transsexuals in order to bolster the masturbatory fantasy of fetishistic men. We should deny them this blatant misogyny. They are transvestites.
Transsexual and transvestite
Blanchard’s HSTS are true transsexuals; his AGPs, however, are fetishistic transvestites. He only brought them together because a percentage of both desire vaginoplasty. Otherwise there is simply no correlation between the two.
Transgender, transsexual and transvestite therefore form a false proposition. There are only two: transsexual and transvestite, and the differences could not be more clear. We should stop using the term ‘transgender’, because it is a charged, Politically Correct, term designed to favour transvestites against both women and transsexuals. From now on, I will use the term ‘transsexual’ to mean what Blanchard meant by ‘HSTS’ and ‘transvestite’ to describe his non-homosexual autogynephiles.
In the West, during the last two decades, we have seen an explosion in the numbers of transvestite men. This is happening for specific cultural reasons that are unique to the West. In the next article in this series I will explain how and why it is happening, and why we should be worried.
33 Replies to “Transgender, transsexual and transvestite”
Yet again I read your writing with intense and profound interest. At the end of my reading (and rereading) I am at a loss to actually explain where I fit. However, as always I enjoy your writing as makes me think about myself and where I am at this point in my life. And I thankyou for this outcome.
For the record my sex is female and I as such I am absolutely attracted to men (real men that is by the way); my body has been damaged by testosterone and has some features of a male; but I consider my gender to be Transgender. Meaning to me is that although my body has male attributes, my mind and desires are female, so a I am transitioning from the male gender to female gender i.e. I am a Transgender.
‘my mind and desires are female,’. I’ll go with Bailey: how could you possibly know that? Nobody can see inside the mind of another in that way. Define what the parameters are. You can’t, except in the most stereotypical terms.
There is only one behaviour or desire which can be said to turn a person born male into ‘a woman’ and that is the desire to be sexually penetrated. Although this is a limited sense that many women would disagree with, alongside, I do not doubt, a good many receptive gay men, it certainly is important, however, in the transsexual/HSTS understanding of self.
‘Transgender’ has become abused by the political Left and should be abandoned. It would be better to use the term ‘autogynephilic transwoman’, which at least has some descriptive value. Transgender, as it is appled today, simply means ‘Gender non-conforming’ so, once again, it would be better to use that term or GNC, as they actually make taxonomic sense.
There is no justification in continuing to use a word that has become so abused, especially by such as the idiot Julia Serano and her ilk. We should not be using charged, politically correct terms that serve to disadvantage some groups to the benefit of others (PC always does this; it’s the main reason egalitarians like me want to see it destroyed.) This is especially the case where the term in question is inferior in its descriptive value to others.
Instead, we should use terms that have proper scientific or taxonomic value. Transsexual, transvestite and GNC all do: Transgender is actually a term of obfuscation that serves only to avoid description
Blanchard has been proven wrong over and over again. No psych organisations (like APA, WPATH, etc, etc, etc) accept his ‘theories’, not one.
This is a strawman argument. WPATH is an AGP organisation; the APA fundamentally recognises Blanchard but does not discuss the causes of transsexualism in it DSM. That is not the same as you suggest. Blanchard has, furthermore, been vindicated by the MRI studies by Rameti et al, and Savic and Arver, that you’ll find on the links page here.
Blanchard is also completely supported by observation. Anyone who knows many TS, as I do, knows the fall into two completely distinct categories, consistent with Blanchard’s model. It is true that there are some differences attributable to culture, but the underlying taxonomy is valid.
Blanchard’s own 1989 paper (“The Concept of Autogynephilia and the Typology of Male Gender Dysphoria”) did NOT prove his own hypothesis, which was:
“This study tested the hypothesis that all gender dysphoric (GD) males who are not sexually aroused by men (homosexual) are instead sexually aroused by the thought or image of themselves as women (autogynephilic)”.
I don’t always require brevity, but cut-and-paste nonsense you trolled from an AGP propagand site is not permitted. Make your point or be done. Blanchard stands up to trial and is the only coherent model that describes the two types of transexualism.
You are a Western autogynephile and like many, have difficulty with the truth: you are a man in a frock. You try hard to erase and colonise the transsexual (HSTS) profile, but 30 seconds in yur company would show how wrong you are.
First, “proof” is not a scientific term… the term to use is “support”… does the data *support* the hypothesis… and yes, yes it does. Further, this material was replicated, both before and after Blachard’s papers by Buhrich (1977), Freund (1982), Doorn (1994), Smith (2005), Lawrence (2005), and Nuttbrock (2009), in separate studies spanning four decades, collectively involving over a thousand transsexuals to date. In fact, this is one of the most repeated and reconfirmed scientific finding regarding transsexuality. While Blanchard coined the term “autogynephilia” in the late ’80s, the phenomena had been noted and studied before using various synonomous terms such as “fetishistic transvestism” and “fetishistic femmiphilia”. This is not the only statistic that shows that there are two and only two types, of course, but is the single most important.
Agreed. This illustrates the difficulty that autogynephiles have with notions like truth and integrity. Living as they do in a fantasy world with themselves as the absolute centre, objective reality becomes impossible for them to accommmodate.
Personally, as a trans woman, I have met male attracted, female attracted and bisexual trans women…and you can’t tell them apart by their looks, or their so called ‘femininity’. The same for trans men.
There are some that are stunning, some ok, some not so ok…reflecting a spectrum of looks, just the same as cis women.
Age is a factor, naturally (usually) older trans women are not as attractive as younger ones …but that is the same for cis women too.
A high percentage of any age ‘pass’ in that they are automatically accepted as cis women. In fact many cis women, especially if they are non stereotypical or gender non conforming, don’t ‘pass’ and (at least in the US) get hassled.
[Edit; unsubstantiated anecdote removed]
No. Anyone familiar with meeting transwomen on a regualr basis and in large numbers would be able to tell the diffrence between a transsexual (Blanchard HSTS) and an autogynephile (AGP) almost at once and with 90% or better accuracy. This applies equally in Asia, where both profiles appear in youth, typically around puberty — HSTS usua;lly somewhat before, AGP after. You would only have to look at Blanchard’s assessment of physical attributes to do that; a few moments’ conversation would clinch it. While the Asian AGP profile does appear much earlier than is typical in the West, this still holds true. Therefore it has nothing to do with age of appearance: there are two types of Mtf transitioner — transexuals and autogynephiles.
I realise that you are an autogynephile and particularly in the West, this grou[p is extremely hostile to transsexuals, even denying them the right to call themselves that, in favour of meaningless umbrella term ‘transgender’ that only serves to afford AGPs legitimacy stolen from them. But facts are facts. A transsexual is about as similar to an AGP as cats are to dogs.
Finally, if you wish to reference material, paste the URL. If you copy-paste screeds of irrelevant text, I’ll cut it.
Rod, as always, love your articles… but in this one, you have stated something that is not only NOT in agreement with years of experience of talking to HSTS, but is directly in opposition to the literature and scientific data. HSTS are NOT comfortable with their genitalia. It is not just that they don’t want to be ‘tops’… they are also “avoidant”… generally unhappy w/ their genitalia and dislike partners observing or directly “stimulating” (oh… but indirectly stimulating is wonderful and fine)… that is, that statistically speaking most will not willingly submit to their boyfriends directly stimulating their pre-op genitals (hand or oral)(though in my personal experience in conversations with others it is near universal, though I have known a couple who were “OK” with it to please their boyfriends.)
I know that you have dated both HSTS and AGPs… but data takes precident over anecdote:
Here’s the data, from my essays on the subject:
AGPs do NOT start out hating their genitalia… they love using them… both as having direct stimulation (hand and oral) and having direct sexual intercourse with women.
Well, the first thing to point out is that there is a rule in science, that whenever theory is not supported by observation, then the theory muat change. Were that not the case, we should still believe that the sun and moon move around the Earth, which I believe a gentleman named Copernicus proved wrong, using observation, some several hundred years ago. But you claim to be a scientist, so you must know that: therefore what you are doing is using a rhetorical technique called ‘appeal to authority’. This is a recognised logical error. What you are actually doing is saying that you don’t like my findings because they challenge your own, and instead of going to Asia and finding out for yourself how things aare, you’d rather I just shut up. I have no intention of so doing.
You are patronising and demeaning towards me in an attempt to suggest that you — a person who has done precisley no field research in Asia– are more qualified than I am to discuss that which I have been studying. I don’t think so.
While it might well be the case that in USica, HSTS claim to be ‘uncomfortable’ with their genitalia, you once again fail to recognise that this is is likely a function of internalised homophobia. Where social antagonism and homophobia is less evident, we should expect to see more comfort with genitalia, on the part of HSTS. This is in fact what we do see in Asia.
The attempt to extrapolate from a tiny sample in a small population (the US, < 4% of world population, with known extreme levels of homophobia, to parts of the world not so afflicted, is called cultural imperialism, and that is what you are doing. I realise that the US is the most egregiously imperialist nation in the world today and that cultural imperialism (backed by war) is its preferred modus operandi; but it won't wash here. What you are trying to do is pretend that the legions of non-USican HSTS either don't exist or that they are not actually TS at all. Both suggestions are profoundly offensive. The evidence from Asia suggests that Western HSTS may be suffering from internalised homophobia, which leads them to claim to 'hate' their male genitalia. Asian HST are, in general, very happy to have them stimulated, though they may not be prepared to penetrate. But here the issue is the masculine nature of the penetrating role, not the organs involved. Your reference to my dating is another simple attempt to silence me through slur. Most of my research is done thorugh interview and the subjects are very rarely lovers. I am aware of your essays on the subject and again point out that their relevance is limited to the cultural conditions in the US. Both forms of TS have strong emasculation impetuses, but in HSTS this is more commonly expressed through sexual role, whereas with AGP it is often expressed as a loathing for the physical attributes of maleness, ie for male genitalia per se (despite which, many AGPs do indeed use their penises. However, this is frequently associated with emotional upset and guilt trauma.) All of this is extremely well documented, particularly in Anne Lawrence's work, but perhaps you have not looked into that. Appeals to authority won't work here, Kay. Try again.
Somehow I got you pissed at me…
First, yes, I am NOT a scientist. I am a blogger, like you. But I’m also HSTS… and I know all too well the North American HSTS experience… having been through the “play therapy” crap in the late ’60s. The “talk therapy” crap in the early ’70s… came out to friends in my early teens… was diagnosed as TS at age 17 in early ’75 at the Stanford Gender Dysphoria Clinic… and finally was prescribed HRT at age 18 (when I could legal consent and my parents could no longer stop me)… so… 41 years later, having many anecdotal conversations with others like me (and sadly many AGPs as well… sigh…) I have only met a few US HSTS that were happy about their genitalia… only a few who sought out direct sexual contact… and none who were ‘tops’.
Yes, I’m for the US. No, I’m not arguing from authority, but from DATA, which I specifically cite. Yes, most of that data is from North America and Europe. It is possible that behavior in Asia is different. One cause of that may be that a narrower slice of androphilic males transition here, and thus are more likely to be somatically dysphoric. There is HUGE pressure here to be a conventional gay man instead of trans… But data is still data. And the data shows that HSTS (yes, in Western countries) is near universally “avoidant”.
I’m not ‘pissed’ at you.
‘It is possible that behavior in Asia is different’. EXACTLY! What do you think I have been saying? The data collected in the West is misleading because it does not take account of cultural factors, notably endemic homophobia. Therefore, while it may be useful in some regards, such data cannot be extrapolated to suggest a globally-relevant model.
In short, Western HSTS may be conditioned by endemic social intolerance and homophobia to feel discomfort with their male genitalia. This however, is quite differnet from the AGP model, where the issue appears to be an emasculation fetish. That this is so becomes more likely when we consider the situation in Asia, and I would point you to Dr Sam Winter of UHK, who has repeatedly pointed out that it is aberrant to seek data about transsexualism while totally ignoring the largest population of transsexuals on the planet, in Asia. Smacks ver much of World Series Syndrome and cultural imperialism to me.
The simple fact is that most HSTS in the areas I research in, and this is backed up by other research, notably Kulick, in South America, DO enjoy having their genitalia stimulated (a lot). I have never suggested that they have a preference for being ‘top’ and indeed have been at pains to point out that they are likely to reject this, as they would see it as behaviourally masculine. But the issue here is not the organ, instead the act of penetration.
The ‘avoidant’ profile that you suggest, and appear to be trying to turn into a globally-relevant model, is likely to be a function of social intolerance in the West, which is one of the things I have been saying all along. HSTS in Asia do indeed seek out GRS, but in very small numbers and when they do it is not because of discomfort with their genitalia, but to make themselves more ‘like a womam’ in order to attract and possibly keep, straight male partners.
There is one thing I don’t understand here.
If they are so comfortable with their penises as you say, then why is the sex change industry in places like Thailand so huge for example? I mean people literally go from the west to Thailand for SRS.
It also seems that every famous “ladyboy” has had sexual reassignemnt surgery or gender reaffirmation surgery or what you want to call it.
Also, is Thailand any less homophobic? You yourself wrote about disdain in the streets. Gay marriage etc and other things are not legal there, they can’t legally change sex, in that sense the West seems more tolerant in many ways, +it was the west who developed most of the treatments for the people with these problems.
Well the ‘sex change’ industry is not that huge, but it is substantial. However you must remember that there are an awful lot of TS, MtF in particular. Estimates vary but it is certainly in the several hundreds of thousands, if not a million or more.
This is from a draft article: ‘There are around twenty Thai clinics offering GRS procedures, which can be found through a web search. Those that publish figures suggest they carry out 150 to 200 surgeries per annum each, but perhaps half of these are on non-Thais. That would suggest that over the last twenty years, around 40,000 of the Thai transgender population have had the surgery. Although it is immensely difficult to find accurate figures, most estimates suggest that 1-2% of the Thai adult male population is transgender.’
There are a number of reasons why Thailand is a popular destination for foreigners. It is cheap, with the best surgeons charging around $10,000 to $15,000 for a full inpatient service; there are much cheaper outpatient options which are usually chosen by Thais. Surgeons are famously open to carrying out surgery and although they do notionally comply with internationally-recognised guidelines, basically, if you tell a local psych you want the op, you’ll get the necessary papers.It’s also a nice place and people combine surgery with a vacation.
Not all famous ladyboys have had GRS; a friend of mine who is a very well known model is intact. She has no intention of having surgery (gorgeous HSTS). Surgery is far more popular amongst AGPs than HSTS and especially Western profile AGPs.
Homophobia is a strange thing. Yes there is discrimination even in Thailand, which is why LBs tend to socialise together. But do people get insulted or beaten up or worse…No. There is parental resistance, especially from fathers and this can be violent, but there is a powerful resistance in Thai culture to offering insult to anyone. There are TS who are elected politicians in both Thailand and the Phils, and a really surprising number of models in Thailand are TS. They’re all over the glossy mags. (These girls get GRS so they can do bikini work, BTW.)
‘Gay marriage’ might not be actually legal but there are plenty of people living as couples. No big deal. Erm, nobody, anywhere, can change their sex, but in many parts of the West, you can change your legal gender — and no, not in Asia. That is because, legally, they do see it as a question of sex, which is fixed at conception and cannot be changed. A fair number of LBs do complain about not being able to change legal gender but really, in most areas of life, a TS in Thailand or even the Phils, where there is more discrimination, has a decent life, given that she has work. No, the West is not more tolerant, definitely. Activists have pushed the legal envelope in the West, but in Asia the social one is much broader already.
Regards treatments — well we know the Scythians were treating themselves with feminising hormones by drinking distilled pregnant mares’ urine at least 2500 years ago, so that has been around longer than the West has. The surgeries were pioneered by Europeans, it is true, but surgery is a craft as well as a science and they are very very good at it in Thailand. I have seen some convincing cosmetic pussy, believe me!
On another topic explored in this essay which I contend is NOT supported by the literature and evidence, autogynphilia is NOT an epiphenomena of mashochism and a desire for humiliating emasculinization.
Autogynephilia is a subset of Erotic Target Location Errors:
Autogynephilia, like the other ETLEs, is semi-independent of masochisism. I say, “semi” because, as a paraphilia, autogynephilia, like all paraphilias is likely to be found in individuals with other paraphilias. That is to say, that some underlying neurological disfunction is likely to lead to developing paraphilias in general. However, one does not neccessarily directly lead to another. In this case, the evidence suggests that they do NOT.
Consider that while nearly a third (28.3%) of autogynephiles are masochistic (compared to only 4.9% of males generally), that leaves a little over two thirds of autogynephiles who are NOT:
Admittedly, there are those that combine their autogynephilic and masochistic paraphilic fantasies as you describe… and indeed the genre of “forced feminization” porn is quite popular, it is NOT universal so it can’t be causal as you suggest in this essay.
Well, there are two things to say: the first is to point out that Western profile autogynephiles habitually lie. This certainly leads them to cover up the nature of their fetishy. But allowing for this, you are in a logical cleft stick: to emasculate someone meands to remove their masculinity. How eose do you propose to describe autogynephilia, than the removal of a male’s masculainity? You’re the one adducing terms like ‘humiliation’. But irrespective of that, an autogynephile, when dressed as a woman, is emasculating himself. If the emasculation is being done for sexual reasons, which we all agree is what happens in autogynephilia, then it’s a sexual fetish. QED, cut and dried.
You’re adding nuances into my use of words that I dispute and were not intended. Feminsation, for a male, is emasculation. If it is done to satidsfy a sexual urge, it’s a fetish. It might not be associated with masochism, but certainly in the West it almost always is, irrespective of what AGPs might say. However, it is nogt so evident in the Asian profile but I would contend this is because of the matricentric nature of the society and the influence of Beki Culture, which actively supports autogynephiles and gives thenm a sense of worth.
Either that or yu are saying that autogynephiles are innately women — which I don’t think you are and would challenge anyway. Desire to be emasculated other than through being sexually penetrated = autogynephilia. Simple
Whoaa Rod, This article is a complete 180 degree shift of views from previous articles. You previously wrote that AGP Transwomen and HTS transwomen are both legitimate transwomen provided they make the effort to appear as women.
Are you saying the AGP transwomen in Asia you described before are not transsexual?
What about the AGP women who desire to become supermodels or beauty pageant winners to dominate womens spaces are they not transsexuals now?
The whole emasculation theory is out there, but is often an outlet for the Western AGP because of internalized societal pressure.
Many AGPs also are transitioning younger in the West which you didn’t mention in the article, and can develop attraction to men as you have said happens in Asia.
There are many AGP transwoman who make the effort and are able to blend into society as women and aren’t bearded men in dresses.
Hi Naz. Yes I am aware of what you are saying and these issues will be dealt with in future articles in this series.
Without telegraphing those future articles, I think that we can easily categorise HSTS as transsexual because their desired gender presentation is in line with their sexual desire for men, and the sexual role they wish to play with them. They have a psycho-sexual inversion which means that their sexual desire and expression of gender are opposite to that which would be expected for a person of their birth sex.
Further, Blanchard’s description of these individuals holds truein a physical sense: they are smaller, lighter in relation to height, more finely boned and tend to much more feminine (technically ‘neotenous’ features which 1 make it easier to pass as women and 2 as Blanchard said, closely relates them to feminine gay men.
GRS is simply a cosmetic surgery that does nothing at all to change a person’s psychology or sexuality. This is probably why we are seeing increased numbers of desisters. The person is the same before and after GRS, although, in the case of HSTS/ranssexuals, they may have reward in the form of thinking they can more easily acheoive a life goal of securing a straight male patner. (Like Bailey, I think this desire is unlikely to be fulfilled in actuality and this is supported by conversations with Asian post-ops. They find it very hard to get male sexual partners and often pay for sex.)
I no longer think that simply ‘appearing to be’ a woman is a qualification for being termsed transsexual. Such a broad definition would include all sorts of cross-dressers, drag queens, you name it, who are not trannsexual at all. I think we should use the term transsexual to refer only to Blanchard’s HSTS. After all, it is half of his term, and the ‘HomoSexual’ prefix causes offense. ‘Transkid’ really means nothing and ‘former transkid’ even less so. So I think we should stick woith ‘transsexual’ to mean a person who is smaller, lighter and more feminine than the norm, who has had desire for men since childhood and probably been GNC since then too; whose adult desire is to be a classic woman for a straight man; and whose who life is focussed on living as and appearing to be a woman. Must fundamentally, her status ius linked to her sex drive: MtF transsexuals are attracted to men. If they have GRS theyintend to use their modified genitalia to receive penetration, and will do, as and when they can.
Desire to become a supermodel would not in this description, qualify the subject as transsexual. It is quite clear that within the numbers of showgirls in Asia — of which there are many — a majority are not transsexual. They are autogynephilic and their sexual reward comes from appearing and performing as women. They might well fall under the blanket appellation of ‘transgender’ but would not necessarily be transsexual. Pseudo-bisxual autogynephiles in this group could possiblyu be terms pseudo-transsexuals; they have learned a sexuality that is at odds with their normative birth sexuality. However, can we really justify calling someone born male who remains attracted to and actively sexual with women, a transsexual, because she happens to be wearing a dress and a fake vagina?
Can’t see it.
I’m not disputing that there are many AGPs who make the effort and I am not particularly exercised if they want to call themselves transwomen. However, the attempt to separate innate sexuality from gender expression is false and we need to make clear that it is so. Transsexuals are transsexual because they are incredibly girly and want to be fucked by men. It’s a no-brainer. AGPs, not so simple.
Underlying the case I will be making over the next few articles is that ‘transgender’ is meaningless term with no scientific meaning and we should dispense with it altogether. A transperson is either transsexual, in which case (assuming MtF) she would be both expressing a heteronormative gender and sexual desire conforming to the sex opposite to that she was born, or she is transvestite, retaining a heteronormative male sex drive but wearing female clothes. In this sense, surgery and hormones are just a part of the costume. You cannot call Bruce Jenner a ranssexual; he is a transvestite. It’s time we stopped this nonsense and began using terms that actually mean something.
Also what happened to that theory you had where Asian and Western AGPs both had a history of childhood crossdressing prior to puberty which I know is true from my observations, but that the Asian AGP have less cultural homophobia develop attraction to men versus in the west they are put to shame for any attraction to men during puberty developmen.
Nothing. That remains the case. All I am saying is that this gives rise to two discrete profiles: transsexual and autogynephilic (Asian profile). This is complicated by the fact that in such cultures many AGPs are androphilic, but they are expressing pseudo-bisexuality. Their desire for sex with men proceeds from their desire to appear as the feminine role they have mentally constructed for themselves. But Blanchard showed that they were autogynephilic, and I see no reason to attempt to contradict him.
What this shos, I should point out, is that sexual desire can indeed be learned. Pseudo-bisexual AGPs learn to be sexually attracted to men as part of their feminine role. For transsexuals (HSTS) it is probably innate, but for pseudo-bisexual AGPs it is clearly learned.
I dont understand your cruelty. You claim to support “real” trans women and yet I’m extremely gentle, transitioned at 17, have had exclusively female friends since I could talk, have been abused sexually and emotionally by society for my femininity, and yet becuase I’m only attracted to women you claim I’m some kind of fetishistic destroyer. Its vile and I dont see what pleasure you get out of throwing stones at the cripple
Cruelty? I don’t get that. If you are attracted to women primarily, you are autogynephilic. Most of my comments (insofar as I discuss the West) are directed towards the classic Blanchard profile of autogynephile, ie the late transitioner. I have been at pains to point out that this profile is rarely seen in Asia, where I mainly research. Instead, another profile appears there, who typically transition in their teens, are attracted to women’s company from a young age and, due to the early use of hormones, are often very beautiful. I have also suggested that this type, while not particularly visible in the West, does appear to exist there. It sounds as if you are one of this profile, in which you should probably take the comments I make about Asian AGPs as being apposite to you.
However there is a huge difference: Asian profile AGPs are almost exclusively androphilic. If your profile is similar to theirs, then why have you retained a heteronormative male attraction to women but typically, Asians do not, or at least, are less willing to admit to it? And irrespective of what they admit to, Asian AGPs are far more likely to be secxually attracted to and have sex with men. In Blanchard theory they are exhibiting paeudo-bisexuality, so the mechanism is understood. The question is why there is this difference between your profile and the Asian one. This can only be down to culture. Either, in Asian culture, AGPs are conditioned by their peers to become androphilic, or, in the West, AGPs are conditioned into retaining a heteronormative attraction to women. This appears, in the West, to have something to do with social intolerance of homosexuality, but not enough research has been done to provide a categoric ansswer. However I think we can safely say that this is just one illustration of how much more complex human sexuality is than is often suggested, especially in the West.
I dont understand the whole heteronormative thing either. Like there are lots of cis women attracted to women and you dont deny their womanhood
This is silly. In the first place, there is no such thing as a ‘cis-woman’. They’re just women. They are female. Transwomen (one word) are male. Transsexuals (BLanchard HSTS) are a form of male homosexual, who have carried the logic of homosexual attraction to men to its obvious and natural conclusion and seek to appear to be and live as sexually attractive women in order to attract straight male partners. (Transsexuals are never interested in gays.) Autogynephiles are sexually fixated on the idea or image of themselves as women. While there is behavioural overlap, these are fundamentally different. A transsexual is sexually targeting people other than herself, while an autogyneophile’s principal erotic interest is internal.
When a woman seeks sex or romance with another woman, it is two females together. They are always female and this holds irrespective of the social or sexual roles they are playing. There is a difference between thise roles and biological reality. The logical conclusion of course is that so-called ‘transmen’ are just lesbians on steroids and this is both metaphorically and literally true.
Your womanhood is denied, if it is, by the fact that you have XY chromosomes and were born with male reproductive organs. Your sex is male. You can never change that. If you sexually pursue women, that is a heteronormative attraction in terms of your birth (ie actual) sex. In order to be a lesbian, you would have to be female, that is, have XX chromosomes and have been born with female reproductive organs.
I can’t simplify it any more than that.
Your hatefullness makes me extremely sad and I dont want to get into a debate so pleasepleaseplease just delete my comments
Possibly ought to have thought of that before posting them. Your contributions, apparently based on some serious fallacies, allowed me to contradict these. This is something we need to do in order that transsexualism can be better understood.
Hey Rod! I have found your website to be of great use. You are very knowledgeable and after a year of study I think that I finally have a handle on the various causes of transexualism vs transtrenderism and AGP.
BTW, it is my impression that Blaire White still has her penis and is not unhappy with it, which would fit with what you have stated.
Anyhoo, you have me on follow on YT and you should know who I am…
You might find this video to be of interest along with a comment that I made regarding the different types of trans people out there – if you would like to correct me and others that would be just fine and dandy. I am dealing with people who claim to be true transexuals who are attracted to same sex partners…(they sound a lot like the folks who are arguing with you here)
“”I am dealing with people who claim to be true transexuals who are attracted to same sex partners””
Should read: trans men who are claiming to be gay men, and trans women who are claiming to be lesbians, all assure me they are true transexuals!
Hi and thanks for the interest and support. I am in the Philippines just now with a very shaky internet link but I shall check that video as soon as I can and don’t worry, I’ll contribute!
Blaire does, as far as I know have a penis and has no desire to change that. Many HSTS feel the same, as they enjoy sex the way it is and are not obsessed by such physical details. If they havce GRS it is usually to help them to live in deep stealth. Unlike AGPs, they very rarely ‘hate’ their genitalia, indeed all the ones I know are very fond of them. They probably will refuse to use them to penetrate, but that doesn’t mean they want rid of them!
Thanks for the support!
wow you hit the nail on the head again! the only time i would be uncomfortable with my genitals is if i had to penetrate. i would never in a million years have the slightest desire to do that. but when my partner plays with my genitals i have no issue. i don’t feel less feminine and have no desire to spend 1000s of dollars on a vagina that would potentially end up looking horrible. to me what matters is that my appearance is feminine, I care far more about having curvy hips and butt and boobs than a vagina. my boyfriend doesnt complain about having to do anal so why should i care lol?
Thank you! I have to say that girls like you and men like your boyfriend are a perfect match. I wish you all the very best together
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