Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Eroticization of Cross Gender Expression Part 2: The Exotic Becomes Erotic

In part one, I discussed the evolution of my damsel in distress fantasies through childhood and adolescence. Since, I've gotten several emails and comments from other ladies who have had similar experiences. What is interesting to me is that is is not only crossdressers who have had these fantasies but also early-transitioning transsexuals as well. What I've heard flies in the face of the claims made by many about the nature of CD vs TS folk.

One of the Trans Women I spoke with was Andrea James. In our correspondence she told me that she believes for many of us, the desire for cross gender expression is impossible in childhood and adolescence and that it becomes sublimated and is expressed through sexual fantasy. Why sex? Andrea believes (and so do I) that the desires are so exotic that they become erotic.

The "Exotic Becomes Erotic theory" was develeoped by Daryl Bem and states that biological factors (e.g. chimerism) create proclivities towards behavior (e.g. gender variant behavior)in children which makes them feel "different" in relation to a social group (i.e. female children) and the child experiences physiological arousal (e.g. gut reaction) when near that group. The physiological arousal later becomes sexual arousal as the child becomes an adolescent and adult.

In my case, I was smaller and weaker than boys of my age which made me a "sissy" and bad at sports. I also was a little "He/She" and often mistaken for a girl by adults at the grocery store and other places. Nevertheless, I still believed I was a boy and that my place with the boys.

It was the girls who made me feel different. Or rather the feelings I had about their clothes and hair and (later on) make-up. I have vivid memories from when I was 8-10 years old of being in spaces with cis-girls in pigtails and baubles or my cis-woman teachers in skirts and boots or seeing cis-women put on lipstick in their car mirror.

The reason I remember these times so vividly is because of the intense physiological responses they produced. Who knows what behaviors I might have displayed if I had identified with the female peer group instead of the male one and sought their companionship? But I didn't and so my desires for cross gender expression were expressed (or repressed) in a different way.

I see my strong reactions (or "thrill" as I called in my last post) to depictions of women tied and gagged as the beginnings of repression. Metaphorically it seems like my male self attempting to control and silence my own desires to express femaleness; trying to ensure in a very primitive way that it would never gain expression. Then in adolescence those depictions were removed from their original purpose and became sexually arousing to me.

This is how gender and sexuality became "tied up" for me in early life. Eventually my desires to dress and appear as female came to the surface, but the exotic had become erotic many years prior and so the expression of my femaleness was highly sexualized. In my twenties, I dressed in fetish outfits and even had a website with photos of me as a damsel in distress. I had turned my female presentation of self into a sex object, which really was just another level of control being exerted by my male side; hoping that by turning her into a sex object, she would never be taken seriously by the world as is the case with cis-women who turn themselves into sex objects. And by being tied and gagged, she would never be able to tell anyone otherwise.

Not all of us develop along these lines of course, but I'm fairly certain most so-called AGP transitioners and crossdressers come from the a very similar soup. I think the process by which AGP transitioners and crossdressers make a sex object out of their own femaleness is very similar to what I have described above as the exotic becoming erotic. More on this in part 3 of this ongoing series....

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Spontaneous Human Chimeras, Homosexuality, & Transgender: A Causal Link

In ”Embryogenesis Of Chimeras, Twins And Anterior Midline Asymmetries”, Dr. Charles Boklage posits Chimeras are not as rare as previously thought and in fact 1 in 8 of us may be chimeras and are not aware of our conditions.

What can be considered rare is the motivation to detect a chimera. Indeed, in his book "How New Humans are Made", Dr. Boklage asserts most chimeras have no physical abnormalities and indeed look like everyone else. He also adds that Chimerism need not be present in the blood. So without physical abnormalities or strange blood typing to act as a motivation, there is little or no reason for a clinician to pursue the diagnosis.

While there may be no physical signs of chimerism, the condition might be expressed in the behavior of a chimera. The creation or artifical chimeras lends creedence to this idea. The creation of artificial “brain chimeras” is becoming a routine practice in the field of neurobiology. One such study conducted by German scientists created a brood of Japanese quails with female brains and male physiology.

“Male Japanese quails with female brains do not show male sexual behaviors”

The male quail chimeras with female brains did not display mounting or crowing behavior. It is a scientific fact the hypothalamus–pituitary–gonad (HPG) axis coordinates displays of sexual behavior with reproductive physiology. Sexual brain development therefore defines the ability of brain areas, including the neural part of the HPG axis, to respond to particular physiological signals in adulthood.

Could it be a that spontaneous human chimera arising from a plural pregnancy (boy & girl) might display similar behaviors? Indeed, in "Stem Cells for Dummies" Goldstein and Schneider describe the formation of a chimera:
Two zygotes travel down the fallopian tubes towards the uterus, growing and dividing into multiple celled embryos as they go. The growing embryos come into contact with each other, and one absorbs the other or they fuse together. The absorbed embryo supplies cells with it's own DNA to the body of the developing embryo. The resulting baby (and eventually adult) is composed of cells with two different genetic libraries -- one set of cells from each of the two embryos that fused.
When merging occurs, the embryos are little more than brain primordia. It is possible the merging of brain primordia from a boy and girl could create a hybrid brain structure or more appropriately a hybrid HPG axis – – both male and female at once.

I believe sometimes the merging creates a human with same-sex attraction, other times merging creates a human with gender confusion, and sometimes perhaps no effect at all. It would largely depend on the physics of the collision of the two embryos as to how the resulting chimera would form.