Inside out

  • Posted on May 3, 2014 at 8:19 am

I am reminded that for some people, genital surgery is unimaginable, or should not, could not, be imagined. Scary isn’t it, that something so intimate and personal might undergo intervention with a knife.

Look away now, read some other post on here instead, because this is one of probably several to explain, without the gory detail, what I am looking forward to in another 11 weeks.

The first thing I want to say is that what lies ahead for me is not the allure of something horrible being removed (I am not that kind of dysphoric), but of something being given. I have not at present got the parts that I feel in my deepest place of self-awareness, belong to me. Yes, having a vagina means everything, after which I can die in peace (not for a while yet though!). It is not unusual for people like me to feel that our minds, brains, inner awareness and attachments have made it all the way there some time before we give our bodies up to the experts.

I do remember my ex saying one night that she couldn’t imagine having the dangly bits, and I do remember saying that I could easily imagine having her bits. I have thought that for a very long time. It came through in meditation quite strongly, long before I transitioned, even before I really appreciated that gender dysphoria was a diagnosis for my turmoil. Nowadays, it comes through very deeply in dance, where body-awareness is part of the approach.

Ah! No gory detail yet, then! You’re still reading, with one foot over the brake.

You see, if you are just naturally heterosexual, and strongly binary, your sexual partner’s bits are the attractive complement to your own. You can’t imagine actually being like that, you like them because they fit yours, and partly because they are so different. I mean, if this is your way of being, why would you want to touch someone else’s bits if they looked like yours? Yuk! (That’s how it is, isn’t it?)

Similarly, if you were born with the same bits as me, and are hetero-binary, then your crown jewels, your orbs and sceptre, are incredibly precious. They give you the power to be sexual, don’t they?

So I do understand how what I am facing seems very odd, even objectionable to you. Are you a partner of a trans person, hoping to god that they don’t want to actually do this? Let’s try to understand each other. A bit, anyway.

For starters, you can probably see that for someone like me to fervently seek this surgery, it has to be both serious and very different from your own experience. Using your male bits, and enjoying the experience, is no indication that the feeling of missing something else is present. It isn’t a double-think, and it isn’t any kind of denial, and I understand that taking something away can seem a very hurtful, bizarre thing to ask for. It is, therefore, something that cannot easily be spoken about with non-transsexual people.

For those of you who want to continue reading …

There are three parts to my surgery, and all of it is simply a process of recycling. Not much is wasted, though some of course is not needed any more. The first is vaginoplasty, which involves turning you inside out, or rather outside in. We share a lot of very similar tissue, it has simply developed and grown in different directions, after all of us having had a proto-uterus in early embryonic weeks. So don’t be surprised. The second is clitoroplasty (why waste a good sensation?), which recycles the bit that feels nicest. This is perhaps the element most likely to fail to ‘perform’, so I’m crossing my fingers. The third is labioplasty, which gives you the outer shape. OK? Not too squeamish still? Don’t think about the knife, just understand that the result is an amazing reconstruction of what my head believes is the real form I should take anyway. Maybe like you. You like how you are? It feels natural? Of course. Same for me, when it’s all done.

What I am trying to express, knowing that the concept is very alien to hetero-non-trans people, is that we share a lot of the same raw material down there, but in our head or hearts or wherever ‘self’ is, we have a fairly clear idea of our own body, mapped into our minds. Mine is as real as yours, and I accept that it is different.

This is why I say that the procedure for me is all about what I gain, not what is taken away. It is a big putting right, a correction. So don’t ball-up in squeamish imagination of anything being ‘cut off’, relax, and think that something instead is being restored.


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