Apr 16, 2008

HRT and Sexuality

Before I write what I am about to let me put the disclaimer down that I love my wife and am attracted to my wife more than any other time in our relationship. I put this out there because I do not want what I am about to share to send out the wrong message to anyone. I am very committed to my wife and love her with all my being.

Back when I started my baby steps into HRT and things were being explained to me one of the things that I was made aware of was sexuality. For my whole life I have been attracted to women so basically I identify as a lesbian. Yes that might sound crazy to the Avg person because i have male parts but to put it into perspective it isn't determined my male anatomy, only by my brain which is female.

In the HRT session one of the issues I had been made aware of was that hormones are very powerful drugs. They not only help alter the body but they do an amazing job at altering the mind as well. In this one of the things that can be affected is sexuality. So in my session the question arose, Are you open to the idea that your sexuality could change?

When I answered this question I made it clear that I understood and that I was open to the idea. I had been open to it because in all honesty I never figured it would happen to me and besides I was so deeply in love with my wife that I figured it would never be an issue anyway.

As the estrogen took over I spent a good 6 months of having my emotions bounce around like a beach ball on the coast during a windstorm. My mood swings at time could be extreme. From pure joy to crying for no apparent reason, it was 2nd adolescence making me feel like an emotional teenage girl

In my old days I had no particular view of men in any kind of an attractive or physical way. I didn't like the way they acted, I didn't like the way they treated women and I thought they were dirty creatures in general. If my wife were to point out a guy to me and ask me what i thought I would probably say something like .. "Eh, I dunno"

Sometime ago as we were sitting watching TV I had a smile on my face and when Dee asked me why I tried to be dismissive and figured I'd just shake her off. When she pressed this issue I just muttered something about how it was embarrassing and that I didn't want to say. Her being the persistent person she can be assured me it was ok and that she wouldn't judge me.

I pointed out an actor on the TV and when she asked "what about him?" I replied how I thought he was cute. I didn't see his cuteness in any kind of a sexual way, just in an attractive way. I'm not sure when it hit me but apparently something had changed with me and yet I was still deeply in love with this little blond creature I'd been blessed to spend my life with. Dee would occasionally tease me about the cute guy on the TV. It was just one of those things that she would have fun with because she knew she could pull a coy smile from me. She also assured me that I shouldn't feel bad or ashamed for feeling that way...

As time has passed I have seen a few guys that I thought were attractive or cute. Not in any kind of a sexual way but just a visual. Something that just 2-3 years ago would elicit no opinion or maybe a "ohh boys yuck" opinion. I would always walk a fine line with discussing this because I never wanted her to fear losing me and quite honestly I could never do better than being loved by anyone but her.. she is just perfect for me in every way.

About a week ago I had a very bizarre experience. During the night I had a dream that for whatever reason stuck with me, most of my dreams a very hard for me to remember. This one was different because I not only remembered it but it was so vivid. While I won't post the pure details of it (Those are for me only!) I will say it involved being made love to by an unknown man. During the course of this dream I can say I was fully female and yes apparently I enjoyed it.

I've had dreams in the past that have me as a full female in the dreams, it's just par for the course when your brain works this way. Not once though have I ever had a sexual dream in this mode so this was very different for me. I held onto that dream for most of the next day before I ever mentioned it to Dee, as I said before I don't want to put unfounded worries in her head.

When I told her about the dream she just put a cute little smile on her face and started to tease me in the loving way she always did. Kind of like the little girls on the playground reciting the "sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g" limerick about some intended target. She did assure me she not only thought it was cute but she felt it was healthy for me. She also felt that I should let go and just let it be what it is and not make myself sick thinking there was anything wrong with it

After discussing the possibilities with Annah about this being an HRT issue or what not we both felt it could be. Neither of us had any definitive answer as to why but only the fact that it was mine to enjoy and yet still I had to wonder what was causing this.

Sunday evening on aim I told my friend Kristi what happened and out of all of us it was a gender girl who came up with the best answer. Recently I had finally committed myself to the fact that surgery was in my future. For a long time I could never get Dee to give me anything emotional from her own perspective but only she felt this was best for me. In doing so I had been on the fence about surgery because I felt if she could be so unselfish with me then it was only right of me to compromise with her. She has never viewed this as an option because she didn't think I could feel whole without completion of the surgery. Recently she made it apparent to me that she loved Karyn much more than Kevin and if she was to lose Karyn she would be devastated. In that one instance the decision had been made.

Kristi pointing this out to me came up with a very strong point of view. She told me it was probably a product of me finally accepting being female as a whole and allowing myself to be who I am sexuality and all. After all until this point there was no determination where this would fully lead. It was as tough a weight had been lifted from my shoulders with that point because it made the most sense, I was giving myself permission to accept every aspect of being female ... and suddenly that dream took on a new meaning for me, a more enjoyable turning point in my transition.

I don't know how deeply HRT has played a role in this, I have to believe it has been a major player. Finally opening myself up to all of this is like letting go of a burden. It is living life without a defense mechanism about how I could be perceived sexually. Now I can think of that dream and have a bit of a smile on my face, enjoy it for what it was and take ownership of my own feelings....



Anonymous said...

Hi Karyn,

It is just like me to be late to the party, as usual. Four months late in this case. I was steered to your blog site here by a mutual friend at Yahoo 360 and started looking through your entries.

I found this one particularly interesting because I had a similar epiphany about my own sexuality and went through the process too of trying to sort out what it all meant.

If you care to read about it, I have included a link to my blog here.


I was not on HRT at the time of this experience, but can see now that I am, that they have had an additional influence on changing my preferences. While the hormones definitely have had an impact on this since, I think that the strongest influence had been finally being able to understand and accept my femininity. Once I began to lower my defensive barriers and embrace my feminine side, my natural instincts, needs and desires gradually began to emerge and finally burst forth.

I do not mean to imply that your preferences will change as mine did; I just wanted to share a similar “awakening” experience as it were.

I find it hard to believe that there were no other comments on this topic.

I look forward to getting to know you better.


~K~ said...

Hi Sharon,

Thanks for stopping by and reading, I hope there's somethings you can relate too and maybe get some enjoyment out of reading here.

I have your blog link and I will most certainly go read your posting. I think it's a pretty cool thing when we are able to find parallels to our own experiences in other people.

Funny enough, my wife and I were driving home from work yesterday and we started discussing the whole sexuality thing. It was a bit wild to see this comment after the fact...


VĂ©ronique said...

First, thanks, Sharon, for the link. Very interesting post!

I'm in a similar position to you, Karyn. I love my wife deeply and find her sexually attractive. I'm also attracted to women in general, and that seems not to have gone away, at least not yet.

I have identified as bisexual since I was in my late 20s. My experience with men is limited, but it was pleasurable, if a bit furtive. For a long time, however, being married and all, I have not acted on my somewhat lesser attraction to men. It was all on the level of, of, if Jude Law came to the door, I'd jump his bones.

As I said, hormone therapy has not reduced my attraction to women. It has, however, made me think differently about men, now that they are a lot more "other" than they used to be. I have not been in a position to be hit on or chatted up by a man. I'm not exactly a girl any more. :) But if something like what happened to Sharon happened to me, I wonder how I'd react.

I wonder what it would be like to kiss a heterosexual man like that. I wonder what it would be like to be held and cherished the way men (good ones, anyway) do. I wonder if it would open any floodgates.

This might well remain only in my head. I'd like to stay with my spouse! But there is certainly a lot more wondering than there used to be.

~K~ said...

When I started noticing it I was afraid to discuss it with my wife. I didn't want her to think "oh here it comes" or anything. I love her too much to ever do that.

When I finally sat and told her she just smiled at me and told me that she thought it was great. She told me that I was just leanring more about myself and I shouldn't feel bad about it in anyway.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't say it's your "true" self or "learning" about yourself. I would yes 100% hrt can change a persons sexuality. I have noticed this way too many times. I know of a transgender woman who had absolutely no attraction to men and about a year into hrt she started becoming a little bit attracted to men.

It might not happen to all trans women but hormones are powerful things and do rewire the brain.