I’m going to direct this column towards the transfolk out there that feel that the gender they were assigned at birth doesn’t match their actual gender.

If you are the type of trans person who feels like you were born in the wrong gender role, it’s entirely possible that you have certain things that you do and do not want to be done to your body in sexual encounters. Some trans people don’t want to be touched sexually until after surgery or hormone treatments. Some just don’t like to be touched at all: stone butches, for example.

I think that a lot of transfolk have issues with how we’re treated in sexual encounters. Yes, perhaps you’re a guy who happened to be born with breasts and a cunt, but that doesn’t mean you have to use them in ways that other people dictate. You should feel at ease during sex. You should feel safe. (Um, unless you get off on not feeling safe, but we’ll leave that for another column.) Trans guys shouldn’t have to constantly be worried about partners calling them “she” when their tits get unmasked. Trans women shouldn’t have to worry about being called “he” when they drop their pants and a winky pops out

Speaking of Winky….

Let me give an example. Personally, I have an issue with how my penis is treated during sex. I conceptualize it as a large clitoris. I even refer to it as my clitoris, and I expect my sexual partners to do the same. That works well for me. And if they’re not open-minded and adaptable enough to deal with it, well, I really don’t need them as a sexual partner anyway.

When I jerk off, I usually don’t grab a handful and yank up and down: I do it with a couple of fingers on the head of my penis, just like I’d rub my clit if I’d been born with one that wasn’t quite so… pronounced. The way that I interact with it has changed since my transition. These styles of interaction, though, make me feel far more comfortable with my body. Sounds like a good thing to me!

I rarely do penetration with my clit, though I enjoy being penetrated and don’t mind penetrating somebody else as long as I’m not using my factory-installed equipment to do it. Here’s what gets me, though: for a lot of people that’s a problem. I respect the fact that some partners like penetration and want me to do it to them. But I’m really tired of hearing about how I should be happy with what I have, which implies that I should gleefully go around sticking it willy-nilly (pun intended) in any places that are offered to me. I have only heard that from people who have been lucky enough to be born into the gender with which they identify, and believe me, that’s a privilege that matters.

It sounds like something I’ve read before in Cosmo or other vapid, content-free magazines: that women should shut up about their orgasms and concern themselves with their (always male) partner’s pleasure. If we don’t tolerate that, why do we insist that I use my bits in a way that I don’t like but that my partner wants? Why do we feel okay with a woman saying, “I don’t like anal sex,” but not with me saying that I don’t feel like I should have to insert my Tab A into somebody’s Slot B? I mean, I would never in a million years beg someone who told me that she didn’t like receiving anal sex to let me do it to her. Maybe, if I thought it would be fun for both of us, I’d bring it up once. If she said “no,” that would be the end of it. She doesn’t need to feel like she has to do something because I want her to. That’s not real consent, in my opinion, and I want nothing to do with sex that is not consensual.

Let me address these final paragraphs to the partners of transfolk. Hi there. We love you. We love you for loving us and making us feel desirable. We love you for who you are and what you do and how you make us feel.We love the quirky things you do or like to have done for you.

To me there is an inherent beauty and eroticism to trans. I eroticize trans for its own sake, or because my partners are trans. Hopefully you feel the same way about your partner(s). The fact that some guys have tits and a cunt, or that some girls have cocks or hairy chests, is just fine with me, and can even be really sexy. But not if this makes them feel uncomfortable or undesirable.

We can’t have good sex if our partners are always worried about what they’re thinking of us, can we? We would be so preoccupied with worrying that we were too masculine/feminine/fat/ugly/stupid/bumbling/inexperienced to actually enjoy ourselves. It’s not just a trans thing; it’s a universal human thing. One particular partner of mine, bless her heart, has been totally accommodating. If she likes penis penetration (and I’m pretty sure she does), she has never made it an issue between us. She asked me once, when I came out to her, how things were going to change. I told her that I was no longer comfortable with penetration, and that was that. I’ve since reconsidered and would like to try it again with her, but the opportunity just hasn’t presented itself. And that’s fine with her.

Your partner is trans? Enjoy it, because being partners with a trans person is pretty freaking cool. It’s unique, interesting and challenging, but it’s going to require a bit of effort on your part. As Steve Winwood said: Roll with it, baby. It will be much more rewarding in the end.