Monday, 28 February 2011

Maybe our (cross) dreams can come true?

I'll preface this short post by pointing out that what I'm suggesting may or may not happen in our lifetimes and that even if it does, it may be too expensive for many of us to afford and that waiting for it may prove to require more patience than most of us can muster. Still, it's a glimmer of hope and for what it's worth, there's still some interesting reading and viewing here.

First of all, immortality, or some version thereof, may be actually possible for those of us who are middle aged or younger. Before your eyes glaze over and you close this blog, never to return, take a look at the following article - - and then watch this video, which presents a realistic case for the possibility that immortality may be within our reach:

Aubrey de Gray has been making waves in recent years and has been interviewed and invited to talk to many news organisations and at many events, including TED, which is well known for providing inspiring and forward-thinking individuals a platform to present new ideas and insights into where we're heading, technologically and otherwise. The video linked above is very, very interesting and well worth watching. Now it is not my intention to suggest that I want to live forever, but rather for those of us who want to experience things (anything) that might be a little too far in the future than we'll quite get to given our current expected lifespans, it suggests the possibility that maybe we'll be able to extend ourselves far enough into the future to make those possibilities feasible for us.

Which leads me to the second point; our rapidly-accelerating medical technology. I just read an interesting post over at h+ magazine - - which pulled together a number of facts and assertions regarding the current pace of medical technology, as it applies to gender change, suggesting, perhaps slightly over-ambitiously with respect to the timeframe, that what we crossdreamers desire above all else, may in fact be a possibility in decades to come.

I don't know about you, and of course I have to take myself with a grain of salt considering I am still only in my early thirties and all of this technology is highly speculative, but if it does come to fruition, I think that if by the time I am 50 or 60, if I am able to extend my lifespan another 30-50 years and beyond in order to approach rejuvenation and advanced body rebuilding technology in order to experience that which I dreamed of my whole life, then I would gladly exercise the patience required in order to do just that. Of course I may be fed up with everything by then and ready for "the end", but the possibility of finally resolving this condition definitely excites me!

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Are we broken?

Often I see assertions by transgendered individuals (crossdreamers included) that we are not defective, but rather we are simply subjects of natural variation. The problem with that argument is that natural variation is not automatically either neutral or beneficial to the individual in question. It is indiscriminately random. Beneficial variations can potentially give an individual advantages over others, such as with high levels of attractiveness or intelligence, or it can be detrimental to the individual, such as being born with a deformity or poor vision.

I think the reason people are so quick to claim that gender dysphoria is not a defect is because people don't like to feel inferior. They don't like to feel as though the universe has simply dealt them a bad hand, as it would mean that their strength of identity is challenged and that, however unwanted, other's pity of them might be justified.

I tend to look at natural variation and ask the question "is this variance detrimental or beneficial to the individual's ability to play out the physical role that evolution has designed us for as a species?" I can't help but think that this affliction that which we crossdreaming and otherwise transgendered individuals have to deal with does not serve any useful physical purpose whatsoever and whilst we can try to adapt and deal with it in our own way, I can't think of any true benefit that it affords us that might otherwise help me to see it as a neutral, if not beneficial, variation from the norm.

If it weren't for the fact that I have spiritual beliefs focussing on countless reincarnations as a vehicle to the continuing development of one's higher spiritual self, I would hard pressed to see myself as anything other than a momentary random defect in the ongoing generational waves of evolution.

Friday, 25 February 2011

Trapped inside myself

"Classic" transgender women generally see themselves as women trapped inside mens bodies. For the most part, they say that they know who they are inside and that arousal does not come into it. As crossdreamers (I prefer the term over autogynephiliac if only to dissuade critics from disregarding the message due to a fixation on the terminology,) we are forced to constantly allow for the possibility that we are just victims of a frustratingly-unfulfillable fetish. Lately though I've been feeling that this is just a poor way of interpreting this condition and that even though sexuality is a significant part of the experience, it is just a strong component of the fact that we are all sexual creatures anyway.

Last night I dreamed I'd become female and while not going about things the way I would if I were consciously choosing (as is usually the case with the strange concoctions our minds come up with while we sleep,) I remember waking and, though the dream slipped away very quickly, I retained a memory of liberation; of feeling as though I was able to express myself the way I truly wanted for the first time in my life. Contrary to my occasional thought that maybe, if I were to finally experience the female form I so strongly desire, I might not experience the exhilaration and the feeling of things being "set right", I felt as though, having had some sort of pseudo-experience of being female temporarily, that the inner peace, happiness and gratitude I felt was in fact the true response I would have.

All of this surfaced periodically in my head throughout today and I came to a new thought that I had not had before. Though many are saying that autogynephilia and "classic" transsexuality are different conditions at their core, what if they are wrong? Perhaps the only real difference is that a "classic" transgender female feels like a "woman in a man's body", thus experiencing an early onset gender confusion, whereas we crossdreamers are "women in a man's body and mind". If the difference is simply a factor of the way our mind is wired, then perhaps the sexual response is simply a male mind's response to the need to be female. It would also provide an idea as to why autogynephilic men tend to start responding to their condition later in life than classic transsexuals. Having a male mind would simply mean that it is harder to initially recognise what is going on under the surface, as the initial "I am a girl" thought form is not manifested due to a more masculine mind and would cause us to confuse the autogynephilic sexual response with a fetish of sorts.

As time passes it's becoming more accepted that women are just as sexually-driven as men, if not more so, though society and its morals tend to have trained women into suppressing their outward expression of this to an extent. On top of this, I have read from multiple sources that it is common for women to become turned on to some degree at the thought of themselves being sexy, attractive and desirable, which leads me to wonder if there is any crossover between that and the sexual attraction to the thought of ourselves as female, seeing as I suspect most, if not all of us, tend to only choose attractive mental imagery as the (self-directed) target of our fantasies.

For me at least, all of this is strengthened by the countless days where I experience little in the way of feeling "turned on", yet still have this deep aching inside of me to somehow be transformed into the object of my desires. I do have a separate unrelated fetish, though I won't get into the specifics, and because of the experience of these in tandem, I can feel a significant difference between the fetish and my autogynephilia. Whereas with the fetish I can be turned on very strongly, I don't actually want it to be made manifest- "it's just a fantasy", yet with the desire to be female there is nothing I want more, even though it usually doesn't turn me on quite as much as my fetish. Each day my desire for a female form varies in intensity, but irrespective of how turned on I am on any given day, the feeling that I am somehow trapped inside an inescapable prison and sometimes almost crying at some level deep inside, seems to point strongly to the suggestion that we are more closely related to classic transgendered women than many would have us believe.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Freedom vs Companionship

Humans are social creatures. Some of us can live as hermits, or close to it and some of us suffer mentally and emotionally (more than some others) if denied intimate companionship. As with most of us in this predicament, I am attracted to women, in the strange paradoxical way that that is possible, and suffer from the kinds of issues anybody who is forced to live a life of loneliness will likely suffer without companionship from an intimate partner.

I have a girlfriend who I have been with for nearly two years. We've had our ups and downs but we are generally happy and comfortable with each other. I've managed to avoid issues with my unpredictable gaps in sex drive by telling her that I have a bit of a broken sex drive and have known about it since puberty. I've told her that while I really enjoy the act of sex, which is very important for her to know so that she can also allow herself to enjoy it, that I feel like I am missing part of the normal sex instinct a man normally has; that I feel like I have a puzzle piece missing from my brain and that I just don't think about or lust after sex like I'm supposed to. I tell her that watching pornography, an attractive woman stripping, doesn't quite get me the same way ir does a normal man and that physical foreplay basically needs to start in order to turn me on. To go with that, I've explained that I get turned on in cycles and I don't know why, it's just the way I'm wired, and that when I'm in a sexually low point, it is hard for anything or anyone to turn me on. She knows that this frustrates me very much and doesn't mind accommodating me, as long as she still believes that once we're in the act, that I am turned on and enjoying the experience with her. I can't of course tell her why it actually frustrates me but in my mind, it's a suitable compromise.

You might wonder how I found a girl so understanding and accepting of this apparent aspect of me, even though women need sex just as much as the next person and you'd think if I'm not satisfying her in our first few months then it is unlikely that things would continue. In fact, during the first few months of our relationship, I had no trouble with desire in this area at all. It's not to say that I got turned on at the thought of sex with her in the normal way, but my sexual desire was definitely heightened. Then a few months in, as the honeymoon period which helped drive our healthy initial sex life wore off, I needed a corrective procedure performed in my nether regions which required a few months of healing and made sex difficult. After that, she was going through some of her own issues which interrupted that part of our life anyway. After that time, I think we'd been together long enough for things to "cement", for lack of a better term.

Am I lucky? Dishonest? I personally can't see any advantage in telling her the actual truth with what goes on inside my head. I know what turns her on, what she is attracted to and what she needs to "know" in order to enjoy her sex life and none of that includes a feminine man who wants to be female let alone a female partner, or thought of such, in bed with her. All of reality is perceived. I don't believe there is any real objectivity in life and if a lie kept keeps us happy and if revealed causes only hurt, with no upside, what is the point? If she is happy and I am careful to never expose this side of myself to her (and I am very careful), then I can see no reason this should ever be a problem.

What would I do if we broke up? I find it unlikely that I would seek another girlfriend. I was only just discovering this phenomenon when we first got together and having learned so much about it since, I think I would probably instead invest time in meditation to understand myself better and perhaps try to explore building a skill for lucid dreaming and online role play via mediums such as Second Life, in order to explore this part of myself further. I am content as I am though and having my girlfriend there keeps me sane while I work on my career and the other things I like to do, which I think would suffer without that companionship. It's nice to know though, that if we ever did break up, that I have an idea of what I might do. There are probably many men out there who have this problem, have no idea what it is and would suffer tremendously not knowing what to do with it and coping with the loneliness with which it is often accompanied.

Levels of detail

I have often wondered what level of detail others like myself are able to fantasize at. I've found that as the years have gone by, I've been able to fantasize about much finer amounts of detail. Details such as the feeling of my hair on my back and shoulders, the look of my female legs as I point them in the air while lying on the bed, the feel of a bra and what my breasts would feel like supported in a bra, how would it feel to run my hands down the female curvature of my left and right sides, how a t shirt would feel to wear given my new proportions; the list goes on and on.

In fact, there are only two details I have had consistent trouble with. The lesser of those two details is what it would feel like to touch and run my fingers over the hairless female skin on my chin and above and below my lips. Whenever I try to imagine this, the unwelcome imagined sensation of stubble, and even the slightly rough sensation of shaved skin, overrides what I am trying to imagine.

The other detail is picking a female face, whether "stolen" from a celebrity or imagined as a sort of composite of desired female facial features and looking myself in the eyes with that face in the mirror. I always feel like either I'm looking at a blind spot, or a constantly-shifting collection of features which never stop changing for long enough for me to get a brief experience of what it might be like to see myself as a female in the mirror.