Pregnant Men and Lactating Guys: Pushing the Gender Envelope

Image

Well it’s Mother’s Day so what better way to celebrate this annual observance than to throw a wrench into the works and discuss transgendered males that welcome the joys of pregnancy and breastfeeding? Once again, I find myself challenged by divergent behaviors within the trans community. Not only that, but I recognize the inherent hypocrisy within myself for questioning the validity of these maternal expressions coming from my transgendered brothers.

But let me say that as a post-operative, male-female, transsexual I have undertaken every procedure current medicine is able to provide in furthering my goal to mirror, reflect—to become, as indistinguishable from my cisgendered sisters as is medically possible. In my case that has meant undergoing sexual reassignment and refashioning my penis into a functioning vagina, breast augmentation (a “D” cup in my case) forehead reconstruction, electrolysis, laser hair removal, and rhinoplasty.

And if it were medically possible, I would undertake whatever procedure would ensure menstruation and the associated risks of pregnancy. In short, I would welcome whatever biological functions are reflective of the female sex. Now, I am acutely aware that there exist many people who are passionately adverse to lending any credence to my claim of female status. Nonetheless, as I have written elsewhere in this blog, my appeal is towards a social definition of sex designation one that embodies an active effort on the part of people to project and embrace norms reflective of their chosen gender.

Whilst fervently, actively pursuing a feminine expression of self I have also divested myself of anything biologically seen as the exclusive purview of the male sex. First and foremost I have absolutely no interest in owning those rights. So, men fill your boots and have at er’. I’ll happily take my place with the women.

Honestly, I am challenged and perplexed when I see transmen embracing sexual functions related to their female heritage. I just don’t get it! In my case I spent a great deal of time, money, and effort to rid myself of my male heritage. Not only do I wish to be rid of it but there was a large degree of emotional discomfort in possessing it in the first place.

In a world where women as beautiful, articulate, and feminine as Jenna Talackova, and Jamie Clayton have their legitimacy questioned seeing transmen such as Thomas Beatie (the pregnant man) and Trevor MacDonald ( a Winnipeg transman making headlines for breastfeeding) embrace such female related sexual functions can only add fuel to the fires of criticism. I admit that we have little hope in winning over all our critics, but certainly sending mixed messages of the sort Beatie and MacDonald have delivered is in no one’s interest.

Unfortunately, I’m sure to raise the ire of others in the GBLT community but this article is an honest reflection of what I feel. Certainly, I do not advocate censure or any other move aimed at limiting freedom of  choice from individuals seeking to embrace biological functions associated with the opposite sex. I am saying that these behaviors further confuse and frustrate a public already challenged by the notion of transgender.

Yes, I am aware that at least when it comes to lactation there is some anecdotal references to males generating breast milk—and even breastfeeding in some instances. In fact, years ago when self medicating with a friend’s discarded birth control pills I was generating visible droplets of prolactin from my nipples. Self administering estrogen or testosterone is not advised by the way and can be extremely dangerous. Fortunately, I ended up under an endocrinologist’s care and my hormone levels were reduced to normal female levels. Nonetheless, I embraced the issuance of prolactin as a distinctly female condition and psychologically warmed to the notion that I was in some way functioning in a female manner.

Nonetheless, fair is fair and in that spirit you may read of Mr. MacDonald’s adventures in breastfeeding via his own blog at: http://www.milkjunkies.net/

Thomas Beatie’s homepage here: http://www.definenormal.com/PregnantMan/Home.html

Happy Mother’s Day gentlemen. Will it be a cigar or flowers? 😉

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Transgender

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s