All good things must come to an end. *le sigh*
Today we finish up our awesomely enlightening interview with transgendered man Patrick*. In this final installment (*tear*) we discuss some more... interesting topics. Including a few questions that made this cool-as-a-cucumber sexpert blush. Have you ever seen a black guy blush? It's amazing.
Oh, just because this is the last post with our new friend Patrick* that doesn't mean we're closing the book on trans people and issues. Keep the questions coming and keep your hearts and mind open. Let's help make our society better for people like Patrick*. It's the right thing to do.
So, if we can, I would like to talk about what’s going on downstairs. With your genetalia, is everything intact as it would be in a woman?
No, well we really don’t know. I have had periods before so I know that I have at least one ovary. However, through all of my medical exams and procedures, they have not be able to find them. That probably indicates that I have 1 malformed ovary and one teste.
Even though you have not been diagnosed, with a lot of intersexed people the gonads are descended. I’ve even seen cases where they found the ovaries behind the labia majora. Has that been explored at all?
No, that’s not the case with me.
So what about the externals?
Aside from the changes that happened with being on testosterone, any physical difference could be contributed to an injury I had as a child. There is still some scarring from that. Before the accident, I looked 100% female. It’s been 6 years since my last exam so I can’t give you specifics.
The things that happened due to testosterone? Are we talking elongated clitoris, shortening of the vaginal canal, etc. or is there something else.
I don’t know about the length of my vagina cavity, but clitoral elongation is common. I haven’t actually experienced as much growth as my doctors had hoped.
Because it would make bottom surgery much easier. Along with fat redistribution, most of the fat in my mons pubis and labia is gone. I’ve been told that my labia looks like an empty scrotum.
Does it shrink and grow? Is it temperature sensitive like a scrotum?
What do you think defines a man?
For me, it’s the urgency to be accepted as a male. I can’t imagine that anyone who wasn’t male would feel the dire need to be accepted as such. To fill the socially acceptable roles. That’s really weird to hear myself say because I want to be a dad, and I want to be a stay at home dad. My mom worked in a factory and my dad stayed at home so my parental role ideals are kind of flipped.
You get it with the biological males who have the macho, “I’m gonna out man you,” personality.
That is an interesting definition and definitely not one that I would have come up with on my own. When I was a kid, the things that I saw as manly were things like physical and mental strength, height, size, facial hair, stoicism, etc. Those were things that I sought to build within myself to be a man. What were those things for you?
The things that I equate with manliness have always been unobtainable because I equate manliness with my grandfather. He, at the age of 92, had biceps of solid muscle that were as large as my calf. Beyond his physical strength, which was immense, he was mentally strong. He raised 6 kids, worked full time in a factory, and then on the weekend he drove 2 hrs help his nephew take care of the farm he was left at the age of 14 when his father died. All that and he was an Army hero. That’s the kind of ideal you can’t live up to.
Ok well, who in pop culture do you look to as a masculine ideal?
John Luke Piccard.
Really? No Harrison Ford, Vin Diesel, or Bruce Willis?
As a kid I was only allowed to watch the movies that my mom wanted to watch. The films that I grew up watching were The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Blazing Saddles, and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Then when I was older, The Blues Brothers.
What is your greatest fear?
Do you think you’re a well-adjusted happy college dude living the college life?
In regards to transition and gender identity, I think I am. That being said, I am also clinically depressed and manic depressive. So, those issues are different from trans issues. I think I am as happy and well-adjusted as any other 23 year old clinically depressed, manic guy. That’s a lot of qualifiers but yes I am.
So, you have a platform to speak to any of the thousands of people that will read this interview, most of which are not trans. What do you want to say to them?
The most offensive thing you can do to a trans person is to assume that you know their situation better than they do. Most transgendered people would rather educate than have you assume. A lot of us want to share our stories and our experiences. Other than the basis of being treated with humanity and respect, most trans people want to have the opportunity to talk and educate people about the issues that affect them. Don’t be afraid to ask.