Hermaphrodites, Transsexuals, and men who give birth. A day in the life of a sex therapist
It was a weird day yesterday for phone calls. I get a variety of interesting questions in the course of a week, amongst the premature ejaculators and inhibited sexual desire patients. I had a call from a transsexual (someone undergoing a sex change) from male to female. Transsexuals are individuals who believe they really are the other gender (usually because of a hormone rush to their brain at a certain stage of neo-natal development), and are wanting to change gender despite what their DNA says. Gina called me asking if she could give birth like the pregnant man in Oregon had. He’s the legal male who gave birth to a baby girl this week who is pictured above.
Beatie, 34, who lives in Oregon, was born a woman but decided to become a man 10 years ago. He began taking testosterone treatments and had breast surgery to remove glands and flatten his chest. Thirty-four-year-old Thomas Beatie was born a woman, but underwent gender realignment surgery and is legally recognized as a man. He was able to conceive because he retained his female organs when he underwent the sex change.
We spoke about the anatomy required with pregnancy, and she was disappointed that the technology wasn’t there for her to become a mother (as she had been born male). I was reminded of the two calls I had from hermaphrodites in the 15 years I’ve been a practicing sex therapist. One was from a new Canadian who called my radio show with a bunch of questions about her genitals. She knew she wasn’t normal, but came from a culture that didn’t discuss that sort of thing. I came to understand that she was a true hermaphrodite (had both a vagina and a penis and testicles), and wanted to know if she could self impregnate. Considering hermaphrodism affects about 1 in a million, you know they exist, I just hadn’t run into it before. The truth is that most hermaphrodites are infertile (or if they are, only one of their sex organs work).
My brain is busy thinking of the possibilities of men giving birth. I’m doing some reading about the new male birth control pill, and if they get that perfected, then maybe male conception may not be that far off? Either way, congratulations to Mr. Beattie and his wife, and they make it a little easier for transsexuals to find their way.