One year ago… (SRS +1 year)

One year ago I was me. But not the me of today. I had relationships. But not those of today. I got ready for work or dates or just hanging out with friends. But not in the same way I do today. I had sex. But not as I do today. The person I was then could never have imagined the world she lives in today. I am somebody who analyzes. Plans. Evaluates options. Thinks critically about every possible scenario, their outcomes, and how to mitigate the risks or negative potential results from those outcomes. I constantly try to take a critical look at myself to figure out how to improve myself. And in all of that analysis, I could never have imagined the world I exist in today. I will forever be grateful to those who helped me get to, and through, SRS which has allowed me to be who I am today. I don’t think I can ever repay them or show them how thankful I am for their support and help through one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

This is a post of reflection. One where I take stock of where I am today, what I’ve learned, how things have healed, and attempting to encapsulate the past year into a post of cumbersome, and imprecise, words. I’ll start with the easy stuff. I had many fears and anxiety going into SRS. I thought of some ways I’d have done differently in retrospect to help avoid as many as I could. Well, I’ve had a year since then to live and experience life now. I can say now that while I understood why I held those fears, they were not ones that ever manifested themselves thankfully. Not to say they were unwarranted or irrational, because they certainly weren’t. There was no way to know where I’d be today, and I’d be lying if I said otherwise. I still have fears. I still have issues. I still have concerns and things i need to work through, but… this is better. It’s worth everything I went through to be where I am today. To those of you reading this blog thinking about SRS and if it’s right for you… I obviously cannot answer that for you. I can tell you that there are so many things that I worried/stressed about that I no longer do. I don’t have to worry about tucking. I don’t have to worry about what I’m wearing (well outside of “is it cute” lol). I can go swimming, jet skiing, to the beach, etc and not worry about it. An immeasurable weight is gone from my daily life. A close friend recently had SRS herself and is very much in the healing process (I’ll likely post a 3rd party account summarizing her experience as she went to a different doc here in the US), but she has found similar to be true already even though she is very much still in the healing process. What about the rest? Well…

Dialating

Dilating is pretty easy anymore. I do it once every 3-4 days and still have depth. It takes me about ~30 minutes if I’m taking my time and doing it while reading a book, or about 20 or so if I’m just trying to get it done. If I attempt to masturbate this is tacked on at the end of the process and usually is about 30 minutes. I’ll talk more about that part in the orgasming section though. I still have a shit ton of lube. I ended up buying what I thought would be a 6 month supply. There are 37 tubes remaining out of the original 180 I bought. I use about a 50/50 mix of the QC lube from Thailand and coconut oil. The mixture really is the best of both worlds and approaches silicone levels of longevity/slickness. The oil keeps it from drying out, while the QC gives it a the water lube level of slickness. After 3 months I highly recommend doing this.

The way I do it is I grab about an oz of coconut oil, and just rub it all around my pussy and in between the labia folds. Then I take another oz and put it on the dilator. From there I squeeze a bit of QC on the dilator (another oz roughly), and slide my hand all over it to mix it. Note, I keep my left hand on the flat side of the dilator where there is no lube to keep my left hand un-lubed and usable. I’m right handed FWIW.

From there I’ll insert the medium one and it can sometimes be uncomfortable (as I’m likely pushing how long I should go between sessions) initially, but then eases up. I get to depth in maybe 2-3 minutes. I use the medium for about 5-10 minutes, then switch to the large using the same method to lube the dilator as before. The large one is pretty mild now. It is a little tight at first, but nothing nearly as bad as dilating was initially. I’ll get to depth with this one in another 2-3 minutes, and hold this one for about 10 minutes.

My mornings used to be wake up at 630 to dilate for 90 minutes to then get ready for work and get to the office a little after 9. Now, I get up at 730-745, get ready, make breakfast, and end up leaving about the same time. Mornings I dilate I’ll get up at like 715 to start and hit the rest of my morning timing without issue (unless I masturbate lol). All in all, it’s pretty minimal in my life anymore. I still have it on my mind at times thinking about when I need to do it next. But doing it twice a week is easy compared to 3x/day.

Aesthetics

It looks like a pussy. Looking from external in it fits well within the range of “normal” vaginas. There are things I’d change of course, but that’s because I’m kinda a perfectionist lol. I’ve thought about looking into a revision since I can get it done for just a flight over and the stay. So what would I change?

  • Inner labia is a bit more pronounced than I’d like
  • See if something can be done to help orgasming
  • See if outer labia can be reduced in size
  • Really just smoothing things out

The scar lines on the outer labia are still there. They are visible if you know what they are. If you’re not aware of what they are though, it just looks like a line that marks different coloration in skin. Which can happen in cis women as well (maybe not as pronounced, but even then it’s not super pronounced and keeps fading over time).

Overall I’m pretty happy with how it looks. One thing I need to work with is to get more comfortable with others seeing it. I am extremely self-conscious and protective of who I share it with. I’m afraid it will “out” me, or will be judged for it. I think that’s the fear. I also want to be very protective of it now that I have it.

Sexual intercourse

Ugh. Sex. I am a very sexual person. I’m involved in various kinky events, and have explored sex with men and women over the past year. I’ve not been sexual with many partners since SRS. Generally because of the prior section where I talk about my reticence around letting just anybody see my vagina or have sex with them. I don’t want sex to just have sex. I want sex that has meaning behind it or, at minimum, looks to be memorable or otherwise enjoyable. But I need more than just a physical connection for it that enjoyment to be had. Some of the partners have simply been just sexual in nature. I don’t regret or wish I hadn’t had that with them at all. Doing that showed me that it’s not really worth it just for the sake of sex.

Perhaps this is a flaw in my thought process or my approach. Maybe I need to accept that the point of sex isn’t orgasming with everybody or every time, but instead to share that physical intimacy with somebody. I can say that just having sex can feel really good. Sex with men is what I’ve always wanted sex with men to be like. I feel like a woman. Instead of just imagining I was one. There is really nothing in it where I see myself in any way other than as a girl having sex with a guy. I enjoy being seen with guys romantically as well. I might not “get off” from it, but the fact the rest of it can happen is pretty incredible in and of itself.

What about with women? Well, there have only been two I’ve been with. One was just a FWB situation. The other is my current gf. In both cases it was more “intimate” than with guys (well… except the guy in NC where sex is very much similar to with my current gf and ex’s). The first girl was older and had a lot of experience with women. There wasn’t an emotional connection there though. With the gf there definitely is. So while I haven’t gotten off with her, I could see it happening with time as there are emotions there already which I expect to develop more over time.

So what’s sex like? Well, non-penetrative sex doesn’t do a ton it would seem. Although fingering my clit and the secondary spot (basically the area between the clit and vaginal opening) are how I get myself off. It needs to be light with plenty of lube though. It’s more about the movement than pressure. I haven’t enjoyed receiving oral much in any of the times I’ve received oral. Part of it is being worried about smell/taste which I don’t think is an issue, but one of the things I’m really self conscious about. But beyond that is it’s usually too much. It is like fingering with too much pressure. I don’t know what would need done differently with oral to make that get me off. I’m sure that’ll get explored with the gf over time though.

In the penetrative sex realm it’s generally enjoyable. Provided enough lube is used and after easing into it as it’s still “tight” (if I dilated more I’m sure that would be better). After that it becomes an emotional thing. If I feel disconnected from the person and thus sex with them, then it’s simply going through the motions. Which feels good, don’t get me wrong. But it’s also not relaxing and what I enjoy about sex. This is largely tied to my own psychology and emotions internally than anything regarding the results themselves.

Sex as an act is physically enjoyable with the parts I now have. My next goal is to get it to be emotionally and mentally enjoyable as well, which it is when it’s with people I have those connections with. Maybe I’ll keep from getting comfortable with it casually. To be determined I suppose.

Orgasming

Meh. This one is depressing for me. I have gotten off from masturbation but never with a partner. I have come (pun intended) close with my gf, as well as with a rope partner who used a hitachi wand on me for about 45 minutes. The hitachi will be another post though talking about sex toys. Unfortunately I have not been able to with another person. Well, save the time with the ex where bleeding ended up ruining it… I’d have cum then. I’ve been close with the current gf as well, but hasn’t happened quite yet.

Since I know for a fact I can cum (albeit not easily) I have tried to suss out what the issue is with other people. I obviously haven’t found the answer yet as I’m still having issues being able to orgasm with a partner. I can say it’s very much a mental game/exercise for me. I think what it ultimately boils down to is trust and being able to emotionally let go and be vulnerable to that other person I’m with. Who knows. This is probably the thing I’m working on hardest in regards to anatomy and post-op “issues” so to speak.

Masturbating on my own is hit or miss. Sometimes I get off, sometimes I can’t. Everytime I’ve gotten off it’s been through reading stories on Literotica or occasionally a fun reddit post in their version of NSFW sexual stories. It’s also been using my fingers with a dilator in me, not from a vibrator. Although I’ve not tried vibrators a ton yet.

Perhaps one issue around it is that I know orgasming releases the chemical oxytocin which has a strong relationship with the feelings of “love” and is referenced as the “love drug” because of this. I am extremely scared of falling in love and getting hurt again like I was last year. That hurt for a long time and still does in many ways. I’m afraid of getting hurt like that again, so shy away from risking “falling” for people. It took the better part of this past year to get back to a healthy mental and emotional place after those ended. I could see this being in part why I can’t “relax” or get “there” mentally with orgasming with partners. But that’s a best guess and would likely need a lot of therapist appointments to figure out if that’s the reason or not.

“Wetness”

Up until this past week I didn’t think I really got wet. Maybe a small bit until I orgasmed. Even the orgasm amount was not much. However, I had a situation happen where I got super wet. Now because of the specifics I don’t know if it was natural wetness or from some kind of physical trauma (it was involving a hitachi). This is very much an unknown.

That said, I need lube. I have started to use Sliquid Organics for sex and found it very good. I’ll use coconut oil with some toys and in some circumstances but keep in mind that it cannot be used with condoms and may present other issues for some people. I will also use a lube injector sometimes so lube is up there already. It helps prolong sex without requiring more lube applications during sex.

There are plenty of other options out there for lube choices, and there are girls who get more wet than I do from what I’ve read on the Facebook Suporn group. So I may or may not be normal, but it’s certainly not a major issue. Keep in mind that many cis women don’t naturally get wet. Here is a link to some Google results for your perusal (didn’t want a single source). I even had a comment posted yesterday on a previous post from a cis woman who doesn’t produce her own lube either. Point is, this is not a problem! If you don’t get wet, get some lube, and have fun. Just make a point to carry it with you. They sell small amounts for exactly this reason.

Hair and hair removal

So while Suporn does remove all hair during the operation, but removes some. He also doesn’t require electrolysis. So, yes I have a hairy vagina if I let it go. I can shave, although that’s super awkward for me. I could go and get it waxed/lasered off, or electrolysis if I want to remove it permanently. I will likely do this down the road, but for the time being it gets shaved if I care. Otherwise it just grows for a bit until it annoys me lol. Just like many other women out there.

I do have hair on the pelvic mound before you get down to the actual vagina itself, then on the outer labia, as well as the fold between outer and inner labias (note, this is the area I dislike the most because I don’t want to nick myself shaving it and it’s really awkward getting to). There isn’t any I’ve found inside the vagina itself, although around the opening there is some.

If you’re not a fan of hair, you’ll probably want to look into waxing or laser post healing. Check out Groupon and such for deals on both as usually it’s not too expensive by me. I can do 6 laser sessions in the brazillian area for ~$250 or so, then get it with a different company for the other 6. I can also do 3 brazillian waxes for about $60 or so that way. Just a matter of what you like and want to do. Smaller areas (i.e. bikini area) are cheaper usually.

Dating

I’ve talked extensively about dating before. I’m still conflicted in many ways how to handle it. However, the way I now handle it is largely a byproduct of my personality. I am one to be pretty direct and up front with that kind of thing and if you’re still interested/around after then you are worth my continued time. If not, no big deal I’ll find somebody who is.

It does create issues, problems, anxiety, and some depression at times. So to help mitigate those I am pretty blase about dates until I get to a point where I think they are worth continuing to talk to, and from there tell them. If they’re still around then I’ll open up more and go from there. This seems to be the best approach for me personally at this point. Will I still do it this way in another year? Or a decade? Who knows, but I’ll figure it out then.

One of the parts that really seems to bother me is that up until I tell people they see me as a woman and depending on the person/scenario want to have sex with me. Then I tell them, and it changes everything. They usually fall into one of two camps. Either the “well I’ve never been with a trans woman, so now I’m curious” or the “I can’t get past you were a guy” (sometimes this also has the bs of them wishing they were better people or know that it shouldn’t matter with it). They rarely say this directly, but things they do say essentially fall into one of those two schools of thoughts.

I get it too. I can see why those two reactions happen. I would like to think I wouldn’t react that way, but if I’m being honest with myself and you the reader (thanks for reading btw!) then I can’t say I’d react differently if I were cis. I’d like to think I would. But I can’t say for certain since I’m not in that situation. If you’re cis and reading this blog though, I’d strongly encourage you to do some introspection to figure out why you’re uncomfortable with it or feel that way. To question what really matters to you in a partner, because I’d be willing to bet that being born with a vagina really doesn’t matter. You just want a partner with a vagina (if you’re into women with vaginas anyways).

For those of you who are pre-op or non-op, don’t go through SRS just to try to make dating/relationships easier. Do it because it’s the right thing for you. SRS isn’t for the feint of heart. It’s an intensive surgery and having gone through it myself then seeing my friend go through it now, I would strongly encourage you to ensure it’s the right thing for you. If it isn’t, then it isn’t. That’s totally fine, and be who you are. Own who you are. You’ll find people who love you for it, so be proud of who you are. Confidence is sexy.

Hormones

I stayed with the same dose (200 mg spiro, 4 mg estrogen, 200 mg progesterone daily) through the past year for the most part. I have not had blood work done since SRS though so I don’t know if this is still appropriate. That said a month or so ago I dropped to 100 mg spiro and have felt better. I’m going to go to the endo in the next month or so to get blood work done to see how this has changed.

Overall thoughts/results

I’d say if 10 was a natal vagina and a 0 was a totally botched procedure that left me with no useful sexual organs at all, I’m generally around a 7 or so in satisfaction of SRS with Suporn. If I figure out some things (like sex/orgasming) and things keep getting better (like scar lines fading/natural lubrication) then it would probably go to an 8 or so. I would absolutely do it again and have no regrets about doing it with Suporn. He did an excellent job and I’d recommend him to anybody else who wants SRS.

SRS and transitioning are not overnight things or a short term goal/process. Both take years to get through. I was extremely fortunate in that I was able to do it quickly, but that also presented its own set of issues that I’m now kinda working through. Either way, you have to work through a lot of stuff. If you go into SRS expecting to be back to normal in a month or two, you’re very mistaken. My friend is looking like she is going to be similar to myself and take 3-4 months to get back to ~80-90% of normal, and 6+ months to get back to 100%. I’d also wager that she will end up going through a lot of self discovery in the next year or two now that she is post-op. She transitioned a few years ago too.

I can say that I feel more comfortable with myself, my body, and the life I lead than I ever did before transition/SRS. There is a lot more to go, but I don’t believe I’ll ever be done working on self improvement. It’s kinda the point of self-improvement after all. This first year has been one hell of a road. It’s been very traumatic for me mentally, emotionally, and physically. I got through it though, and every day is better than the day before it. I’ll run into rough patches in the future as well I know, but some of the internal ones are now behind me. I now meet and date and socialize and interact with people who never knew the person I was. That person is an abstract concept to them. They will never meet that person, and for that I’m thankful. I love who I am today. The body I’m in today. Flaws, imperfections, differences, and all of the other things that make me, well me.

I’ll be doing a reddit AMA on r/AskTransgender if you want to ask questions about my experiences. Thanks for reading and cheers! Time to go celebrate a bit 🙂

Also, as a final note, there are other posts I’m working on as well. I will continue to update this blog over time and may have some guest posts in the future from other people.

Moving on. Literally. (First interview post transition)

A month or two back I started applying for a new job. My current one has kind of hit a dead end professionally speaking, I’ve stayed ~6 months after their generous ability to “work remotely” from Thailand for a month for SRS, and feel that I can now move on without burning professional bridges. Additionally, I’m now healed to the point I’m back to 100%. I can go 3 days without dilating if I need to, although try to do it daily since I know once I drop off daily it’ll never come back. Relationships crashed around me last fall in a spectacular way and I’m still trying to rebuild a social infrastructure that was lost when that ended. Unfortunately, no matter how much I want and wish I could restart a relationship with partners from that group, she’s seemingly moved on and I don’t think a possibility of me being a part of her world exists anymore. Maybe I’m wrong and that does exist and one day our paths cross again, but I can’t keep waiting for that day that may never happen. I miss the three of them immensely and loved them all. So with my job being now professionally at a dead end (and remaining that way likely for the rest of the year at best), SRS is basically recovered from, and only a handful of really close relationships at present… now is a good time to move if I’m going to. If I found relationships here again, or got a new job here, or whatever then who knows how long I’ll remain in this area. I started applying and ended up with two positions that I was interested in. One didn’t work out. This is the other position.

Phone interviews went really well. Everything aligned there, rough salary numbers were close enough to talk further, etc. So they offered to fly me to their office in the Pacific Northwest for the last interview stages in person. I was totally on board and a week or so later was flying out there. Unfortunately due to some issues with connecting out of Chicago my original flight the night before wouldn’t workout and resulted in getting up at 330 AM Eastern, to land at 1130 AM Pacific, and go right to 6 hours of interviews.

Walking in presenting female for a senior level technical role in IT for the first time was surprisingly easy and comfortable. It really was amazing how just natural I felt. Here I was in a place where nobody knew I was trans and everybody saw me as a woman. I can’t say I wasn’t worried about “tells” outing me, like my shoulders, voice, makeup/beard stuff since electrolysis is still on-going (and makeup was ~10 hours old when I landed), hand size, or whatever else might “out” me. I absolutely was concerned about all of those things. The thing about it though is… it didn’t matter. I was there to interview for a position they wanted me for. They wouldn’t spend ~$1500 to fly me out if they didn’t want to hire me at that point. Once I got into the interviewing all of that faded away. I ended up with an intent to offer by end of the next business day (note, it was only an “intent” as there was a lot to discuss/clarify about the overall offer itself prior to them getting a written approved). I’m likely going to get a written today or tomorrow and then be deciding if I’m going to take it the same way I figured that out before transitioning. Nothing has changed there.

What has changed, and will change if I take the offer, is that nobody there will know my past. Not a single person there can “remember” the persona I crafted for the public. I’ll be walking into a place where people don’t know that person before. They don’t know I had SRS. They don’t know anything other than the person I always wanted to be and now am able to exist as. That’s powerful. Yes I’d miss so many of the friends and family I have here, but I need to move forward in life. I’ll do what I can to maintain and ensure those relationships don’t get lost, but I need to build up the life of the person I am now. Without the history of my past there. I spent ~20 years in my current area before transitioning. It’s really hard for me to not see things through the lens of the person I was, regardless of myself not being that person. I need that to end. I need a way forward. I need to build new memories solely as the woman I am founded from that foundation.

One thing I do want to talk about though regarding my experiences. As I’ve said before I’m extremely fortunate in that I “pass.” This made it infinitely easier as people see me as a woman, instead of being trans. I have a few thoughts on this. First and foremost, regardless of how it should be currently in our society “passing” makes things easier. But what does that entail? Well, you might be surprised. There are a lot of women who have “masculine” features, so work on finding yourself and being happy with yourself. Whoever that is. With that being said, personally speaking voice is one of the singular most important things for me and has helped people to overlook otherwise “masculine” features. For what it’s worth, I started transitioning just after turning 28. It took about 6-9 months before I was generally “passing” (although my voice wasn’t since I hadn’t worked on it at all). My genetics happened to respond well, but don’t think that you can only successfully transition when you’re younger. Furthermore, I didn’t transition for society. I did it for myself. And I am so glad I did. To those of you reading this blog in the early stages of potentially transitioning, or having started to… it gets better. It’s not an easy process and you have to work at it. Find out how to dress yourself properly to make shoulders look smaller (like I have to do). Work on your voice if that’s important to you. We are all different in our journey on this path, but you have a lot of control over your destination. If “passing” is important to you like it was to me, then you have to work at it repeatedly and brush yourself off when rough patches happen. Figure out what you want though and work relentlessly towards it. I absolutely will say though it’s worth every ounce of fucking effort I’ve put in, and I still work on things daily (like voice). I’m trying to get to the point that I have as much experience as any other younger professional woman, and that means a lot of time practicing. Things will get better and in the mean time try to enjoy the ride. It’s a once in a lifetime experience that is unlike anything else I’ve ever been through. Here’s to moving forward with my own life, and hopefully helping you move forward with yours. Cheers!

Dating v2

A little while back I put together a blog post about dating after SRS. That post was put together pretty soon after a situation happened that hit me kinda hard where I started talking to a girl on Fetlife, we hit it off really well, and the conversation went to getting together. Since she lives in another city and I’d be staying with her and her bf with sexual things planned, I told her. She said I “misled” her by not disclosing on my profile and to never contact her again. Due to being in a pretty rough spot from relationships ending, it hit me even harder. I also see the “trans” descriptor largely a historical aspect as it’s not really relevant to my day to day, it means it’s more in the back of my mind. I chalked it up to a difference of opinion ultimately, albeit one that still bothers me a bit.

Now we’re a few months removed from that situation and I’ve been dating since then. A lot more successfully too, and after a recent reddit thread I thought a new post might be warranted. Plus I’m in a mood to opine on life.

From that December situation I changed a bit of how I approach this stuff and it seems to be largely why things have been going a bit better. One big change though is my mental and emotional health is a lot better now, albeit still not back where I want it. That’s a post for another night though. My current method has primarily been to handle it in one of two (well a 3rd that’s out of my control) ways, as I ultimately know I’ll disclose it to a partner (total “stealth” from a partner I’m not sure is realistic, or ideal which I’ll get into later in the post).

  1. Standard talking online/app/whatever, arrange a date/time to get together, and then like the day before or day of try to casually mention it in conversation letting them know if they don’t want to get together just to let me know. This can result in a mildly depressing night though if it results in a cancelled date which has happened. Most of the people I’ve talked to though are already more LGBT friendly due to my screening early on, and it hasn’t been an issue most of the time.
  2. The other main option is to do the normal talking thing followed by a date or two. Then tell them before we do a date in private (i.e. their place or mine) and/or before sex happens. Usually it’s after the first, before the 4th, and done via text. This can be problematic as some people will feel “lead on” so it’s not a one size fits all solution either.
  3. If the right situation presents itself I’ve disclosed before on a date or in conversation as well. One date I had a girl who mentioned she thought about transitioning (FtM) earlier in her life. At that point I disclosed I was trans and all that. Her and I have had a lot of fun times in the intervening time.

Regardless of the time I disclose it, I try to do it as casually as possible. Something along the lines of:

One quick thing is I want to let you know I’m post-op trans. It’s part of my past and not really anything currently relevant to my life, but I make a point to put it out there early on.

Casually disclosing it makes it a lot less of a “thing” and much more of a FYI thing. By not putting a focal point on it “defining” me I show them how I perceive it personally while keeping potential partners informed. Informed consent is a good thing, and I know some trans people will vehemently disagree with my views on it but this is how I perceive things for myself.

Which leads to the conversation about “total stealth.” Do people get away with never telling a partner? Absolutely. It’s also your life to disclose what you want to with a partner. I don’t see “total stealth” working for me though. Right out the gate what are the odds that I’ll go the next ~60 years with a long term partner who *won’t* find out or figure it out? I’d wager pretty low. If they find out it can potentially undermine any and all trust built in the relationship. Let’s set that aside for the moment though. I also don’t want to be with a partner who wouldn’t want to be with me if I “was a dude” or something like that. If a partner has an issue that I once had different anatomy, then that’s not going to be a relationship I’d want to have long term. Finally, I’m not ashamed of my past. I own my past. I might not want to put it all out there from the start, but I also don’t put out there my financial situation right off the start either. Everybody does this, it’s normal to not put everything out there up front. Not that you shouldn’t if you believe you should, or choose to. Just don’t put it out there if right away if you don’t want to. I want somebody to share my life with (or people if it is a poly scenario), and that means I share my past with them too. I want to be able to tell them “my balls hurt” jokingly (as an aside, havinga vasectomy many years back means there are two “balls” of scar tissue that hurt sometimes… I’m going to look into options to fix that at some point but need to wait for things to heal first). I want to be able to joke about trans stuff. It’s who I am. I enjoy self deprecating humor, and jokes about gender is rather enjoyable at times.

Am I handling this ideally? I don’t know, but it’s working for me so far. And by working I mean I can live with the results and ramifications of how I choose to approach this topic when dating.Is it ideal? No, I’d greatly prefer to not have to mention it because nobody cares and it’s not a problem for anybody in society. That’s too idyllic at this point in time socially speaking. Especially with the state of politics in the US at present. We’ll see if things change over time in how I date, it’ll be interesting to see.

Sex in a post-SRS life (SRS +196 days/7 months)

So I’ve gone through the first 6 calendar months now post-SRS. I’m done with month 7 by how they count (i.e. 4 weeks/month). First and foremost, I know many people have read the well known Suporn PDF and used it as their gold reference for a lot of information around SRS with Suporn. Well, a few weeks back the author provided an update with revision experiences as well as a section I wrote around the fear and anxiety I experienced. It’s a very well done document that has answers to almost any of the questions I would’ve had going into SRS and I highly recommend reading it and taking a PDF of it with you on your phone.

With that done, on to the updates! And honestly, there aren’t many around the healing itself. Things keep getting better and better overall. Dilation is once every day or two now (I’ve gone 36 hours without any major issues) and it’s a 20 minute thing now. Grab an oz or two of coconut oil that I warmed a bit with a hair drier so it’s not as hard, smear it around and in all the folds, then get a glob of KY since I still have like 75 tubes of the stuff. Which, as an aside, I wouldn’t get 6 months of it like I did (180 tubes). Get like 3 months worth and maybe like 90 tubes if you’re going to get any. It’s decent when mixed with coconut oil, but it isn’t really great for sex as it dries out quicker than I’d like. It also seems that for a day or two every week or two I get random pain/discomfort in some way. It’s nothing major or concerning, but it does happen. Last week, for example, was pain back to where the left labia joins the skin towards the anus. This is actually a similar spot to where I originally had a lot of intense pain now that I think about it. But it went away within a day or two and only happened for a few seconds.

But the main thing I have gained some experience with is sex. Granted it’s only been with two partners, but still. These are people I’ve met off dating sites and were told prior to sex that I was post-op trans. They also were told that I was still kind of lost in the sex realm and it might be a lot of learning experiences so to bear with me. None of that was an issue with either of them. So first up based on chronological events:

Sex with a guy
First and foremost, this guy seems to be a pretty good person and I’ve enjoyed going on dates with him. You certainly can go find some strange, but personally I found it better to explore with somebody you can trust a bit and can talk through things with. First, sex with guys as a woman is fucking awesome. It’s not without some issues which I’ll get into shortly but it’s way better than sex with male anatomy and imagining being a woman in the situation ever was or could’ve been. It’s amazing what it feels like, and while similar to anal it’s really different. And more intimate I feel. But, for me, it’s not without some issues.

  • Biggest thing is lack of fucking lubrication. If there is one thing I may forever be jealous/envious of cis women for it’s their ability to self-lubricate. Well, at least with many women as not all self-lubricate well. I have also only tried QC thus far since I have stupid quantities of it left and expect better quality lube to improve this. Likely resolution – get better lube likely try Sliquid or Shibari to start although need to look into this a bit more.
  • Size of your partner can be an issue. This guy is big. Like way big. He’s 8 inches or so and thicker than the large Suporn dilator (I’d imagine about the orange soul source diameter if not slightly larger). I’m well into 7 with the large dilator in depth for reference. This has caused issues more than once and basically I have to dilate immediately before sex for it to work. Even fingers won’t stretch it enough. Likely resolution – I should be able to fix this by ordering the soul source orange dilator and using that regularly though.
  • Pain due to the two aforementioned points. Specifically due to the girth of him it’s very similar to anal where I need to get a little ways in, wait, then go a little further. Once it’s past the pelvic floor though it’s a lot easier until he “bottoms out” so to speak. Likely resolution – get the soul source dilator, and get better lube
  • Positions can be tricky as well since my depth seems to change based on the position. Which is pretty normal for cis women as well. Just how body geometries work it would seem. That said, this may ease up over time with further healing. TBD.

So that’s the gist of things with the guy side of things (well… the only guy I’ve been with so I’ve got a small sample size). Now, let’s go to:

Sex with a woman
So this is a weird one, and I don’t entirely know what to make of it yet as I’ve only had sex with a woman once so far. Because of this, along with the specifics of what happened I’m not able to provide as clear bullets as above. Quick overview for context of this encounter, I met this girl on a dating site where we seemed to hit it off well. In person it was hard to figure out if she was into me or not, and after a few dates I asked and we agreed to keep it as a friendship. Cool. We continued to hang out as friends over the last few months. In Jan though she found out she had an extended work trip to Germany (Note – I’ll put up a different post about this as there is some stuff that happened that warrants a different post) and said I’m welcome to come and stay with her if I wanted to fly out. So I redeemed some miles and spent 7 nights there. We kept it platonic, although through conversations found out we were into similar things sexually (i.e. kink) and into them in ways that meshed well with the other person. So fast forward to the end of the trip where we spent the weekend in Amsterdam. The second night there we took a nap before going out for the night to the red light district and LGBT bars where we were both open to a 3 some with a girl there if we found a girl we both liked (either in red light or at the bar). We drank a lot of wine and had some cheese, dried figs, and macaroons before the nap. At the end I said, “so I’m going to put this out there… we’re in Amsterdam, I’m kind of drunk, and think it might be nice to just enjoy things here where whatever happens doesn’t mean anything for our friendship.” She was okay with it, although not enthusiastic it didn’t seem. But I do have a bad habit of reading into this stuff in a negative way.

So the sex. We started with kissing, and caressing, and was a much more sensual type of sex than it has ever been when male anatomy has been involved (mine or others). Neither of us went down on one another, but we fingered and kissed a lot. And it was a lot of fun. Like really fun. Unfortunately I was drunk and the stuff that happened towards the end has clouded clearly being able to recall the sexual stuff.

What happened you ask? Well… I had a breakdown. It initially got fired off because she got naturally wet, and no matter what I didn’t. This made me feel that I was never going to have what I want, which is to forget I’m trans and be no different than a cis woman is. And in many ways that’s true. But so far sexually, it isn’t as it relates to getting natural lubrication going. It put me into a dark spiral. It also didn’t help that I couldn’t tell if she was into it/me or not and just doing it to do it. I don’t even remember what all I said/did other than saying I was stupid for suggesting it and shouldn’t have, and ending up with her holding me as I’m holding back tears.

Needless to say, I need to have more sex with women… but I need to get comfortable with myself and my body. I need to accept that I may never get naturally lubricated and find partners who are okay with it and don’t make it into a “thing”, which for the record she didn’t at all make it uncomfortable or anything. Additionally, I need my clit to start feeling good with others play with it. Because right now it doesn’t. Too much pressure is very easy to have happen. I feel kinda lost in this body sexually speaking and it’s like going through loosing my virginity again (#BornAgainVirgin). We’ll see what the future holds. Who knows if sex with her will happen again, but the friendship does seem to be intact at least. I do feel really bad for her having to go through that though as I really wanted it to just be a fun and enjoyable weekend for both of us. These things happen though.

This has been a pretty long post and covered a lot, I’ve got two other posts I need to write up over the next week or so.

6 month SRS update

First off, holy shit… 6 months already? Wow. That has flown by it seems. Although to be fair a lot has happened in the past 6 months (well… 5.5 calendar months, 6 months @ 4 weeks/mo). So where do things stand?

Looks
Well, it looks mostly like a vagina at this point. Scar lines are visible, but mostly due to discoloration. There are outer and inner labia lips and it looks pretty close to a cis-vagina (at least once fully healed it should, i.e. 3-6 months from now).

Orgasm/sensation
Well, I can orgasm. Not from sex thus far, but it’s not really been explored much at this point due to lack of partners mainly. But, I can get myself off if I’m in the right mindset.

Sex
Well, it can happen and has a few times. It’s weird and I’m still trying to figure it out. One of the issues for me is that I’ve yet to have something that isn’t too small or too large. The large side is a width issue, and I’ll likely be picking up the orange soul source #4 dilator to try to make that better. But it is nice to have sex in this way. Also… I need better lube than QC that works with condoms (have a few thoughts, nothing tried yet though).

Sports
I play soccer and volleyball weekly and run more often than that (or try to pending stupid NE US winter weather). I’m noticeably weaker/slower, but it would likely be the same place if I had cut all exercise for ~4-5 months as well. Plus HRT. But I’ll get it back.

Pain
Outside of sex, no real pain. Dilation can be tight, but that’s largely due to me doing it once a day. I haven’t lost depth so I’m fine with where it is.

Dilation
Once a day for most of the past month, with some exceptions (like work travel ironically). It’s been fine so far for me. YMMV though.

Hair
Fuck hair. I can’t ever seem to get rid of it all. And I don’t want to do laser/waxing yet so things can heal more. I don’t want to risk anything at this point.

That’s at least the gist of it. I’ll be posting some other updates over the next week or two that should have more interesting stuff.

Does a neo vagina “become” a neo-natal vagina over time?

So I was on Reddit the other day as I was laid up from being sick (grrr coworkers), when I came across a thread about how to clean a neo vagina post sex. In it there was conversation about a neo-vagina tissue becoming more like a cis-vagina over time, and linked to this article that talks a bit about it. I read it and was intrigued as being about a week under 6 months I don’t really get naturally super wet. Some, sure. But nowhere near enough to have sex with at this point. That could change in time though, but will it change to the extent that paper discusses?

Well, I’m generally pretty skeptical of these sorts of things as unfortunately a lot of things in the trans community are done because of what amounts to nothing more than anecdotal evidence at best. Unfortunately trans topics have 1) not a ton of research for pros/cons to one idea over another plus small sample sizes (i.e. injections vs oral estrogen, progesterone growing boobs or not, etc) and 2) due to the biological nature (and age when starting HRT or going through SRS) of it things are going to vary widely. So I started searching on the tubez as I’ve got another 6 months until I hit a year, which is generally the point when the lubrication changes seem to start happening from what I’m seeing.

I came across this article from the journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics published in 2008 that looked at post-op women from surgery with the McIndoe technique of vaginoplasty (more used in reconstruction for cis-women it seems, here’s more info). This is going to not quite be what we’re looking for as a vaginoplasty is only part of SRS. But it does seem to corroborate the original article. But there’s got to be more right?

Well I found one that looked at the micro flora in post op women, which didn’t really find anything of use for us. Although it did note there was a lack of lactobacilli. But back to the topic at hand.

Unfortunately, it does appear that my original skepticism is likely correct. Here is why. There are two types of epithelial cells: keratinized stratified squamous epithelium (KSSE) and nonkeratinized stratified squamous epithelium (NSSE) – source. The problem, if you haven’t guessed at this point, is that basically exterior skin like the penis/scrotal tissue is of the KSSE variety while internal tissue like throat, mouth, and of course the vagina are the NSSE variety. And while there are situations that cells can convert from one form to the other, it doesn’t appear that SRS will likely trigger that change. This study from 2007 based on 9 post-op women from the time of SRS until up to 14 years after didn’t find any histologic changes. However, keep in mind that in 2007 that means some of these SRS operations were in 1993, and most were in the 1993-1995 range (although I can’t read the article to confirm, just guessing based on how the study was done). Also this paper states that no metaplasia has happened, but it does say that tissue becomes more like a cis-females natal vaginal skin. This was done in the mid 90’s though, and is kinda out of date. I’d like to see this redone with a larger sample size as well as more recent surgical techniques.

So why, you might be asking, do I side on the “no changes happen to the tissue” side of things? Well, two reasons. First and foremost the only evidence I can find for it is anecdotal or studies from the McIndoe technique which doesn’t seem to be used for SRS but instead for reconstruction. Secondly is that any of the super limited medical information I can find on studies of this topic agree no changes occur in trans women. So does that mean it’s possible? Well of course it is possible, but I’d say it’s highly unlikely and not to plan on it. As my view on most of this stuff is it’s better to assume these kinds of changes won’t happen, that way you’re not let down if it doesn’t. If it turns out it does change over time, then you’ve now got an awesomely amazing surprise from life.

I will follow up with this post over time with what I find anecdotally, but it likely will be long periods before any updates happen. Until then if any post-op women are out there and have their experiences, I’d love to hear about them!

It’s been a bit (+154 days since SRS)

So it’s been a while… It’s been over 5 months since SRS. And will be closing on 6 months here in another week or two. Wow has that time gone quick. Each day, especially that first month or two into it, felt like it was hard to just get through the day at times. But now I’m looking back and going “okay… so I said 6 months was the point I was ‘healed’, now I’m about there… now what?” Much of the past 6 months has been just getting through each day, week, holiday, whatever. It’s been grueling and honestly kind of miserable. However after the first 3 months that really was entirely around the non-SRS stuff going on (romantic relationship stuff, roommate stuff, work, etc). And the biggest thing, is that the past 4-6 weeks have become just routine with SRS healing. I’ve gotten off, and while I can’t get there every time I can get there. Stitches are long gone. Pain is long gone, with the exception of a random momentary pain point (which could just be hair getting pulled). I can dilate in about 30 minutes if I need to, and the small usually can slip right in to where it’s only the last inch or two that take me a few minutes. From starting to depth was 15-20 minutes, now it’s 5 or less usually. So now what?

Well. Dating is quickly losing my interest. This is pretty normal for me post-breakups though and getting back out there. I go “I JUST WANT TO DATE” immediately after things end, and started down that path. Went on some dates, met some people, made some new female friends which is nice. But I still have to disclose SRS stuff for the time being. And it kind of makes dating really fucking suck. Plus the people in my area aren’t really my type of people. I dislike the sit around watching football, drinking beer all the time, eating crappy food, etc crap. Couple these together and it makes dating a chore. So I’ll continue that, but that’s more of just a “I like meeting people” thing more than “I need somebody.” Although, I really do miss having somebody to come home to and look forward to seeing after work trips.

So I think it’s about time for a change. The past 2 years have been such a massive internal change for me that I don’t associate at all with the person I used to be. I see pics and feel almost an emptiness there about that person. I love who and where I am with myself. But this area isn’t for me. And the place I live ties me to my past. It ties me to the person I was. I can’t be outdoors, or hang out with a ton of like-minded peers, or date easily, or do anything that I want to be doing here. So I think I’m nearing one of the last big parts of transition… Moving and “starting over” in many regards.

The life I had built is over. I need to rebuild a new life for myself. With people who know me only as this person, instead of having to “get used to” or “adjust” to this person. I’ve gotten to experience other cities, people, etc thanks to my job and honestly the people I’ve met post transition, who may know I’m trans or might not, interact with me in the way I want to be interacted with. I know this post is more of a post of rambling and not heavily related to SRS directly, but the thing of it is that this is very much tied to SRS.

SRS is going to enable me to start somewhere and basically be “accidental stealth”. Or hell even just stealth entirely. I’ve wanted to move. I’ve wanted to leave this area. I’ve wanted to transition. And up until SRS I’d have left this area, moved somewhere new, be seen as a woman… but always have something that kept me from being entirely seen that way. So as I approach 6 months post-op I’m seeing an awesome future ahead.