By Leo Aquino
The word “testosterone” used to bring up images of smelly, hyper-muscular beefcake dudes bench-pressing massive weights at the gym. As I’ve been embracing my own gender identity, my ideas about testosterone have changed.
Some transgender men and gender non-conforming (GNC) people may choose to take testosterone to suppress features that don’t match their gender identity. This decision is made with a physician who is trained in diagnosing and treating folks who experience gender dysphoria, a condition where one feels like their body doesn’t match their sexual identity1.
Studies have shown that testosterone is associated with new sexual behaviors, changes in sexual attraction, and increased frequency of sexual activity among trans men2. Translation: while on testosterone, sex changes radically and sex drive is through the roof. It’s almost like going through puberty as a young boy, complete with the same Hormone Monsters that show up to guide the kids on Netflix’s Big Mouth.
Why I started taking testosterone
Personally, I identify as non-binary and masculine. I decided to start taking testosterone because I wanted my weight distribution to change. Testosterone can help with building more muscle. I also wanted my voice to drop. I’ve been envisioning having a deep voice since I was a kid, and would often be disappointed when I heard myself on someone else’s voicemail.
Gender is fluid. Instead of focusing on trying to look like a certain gender, which works for some people, I prefer to take each day as it comes and see how I’m feeling in my body. It’s really important to understand that transition goals and journeys vary from person to person. There isn’t one monolithic transgender/non-binary story. We’re diverse in what we want to achieve in our individual transitions if we choose to do so.
The most notable change that I noticed was an increased sex drive. Comedienne Ali Wong once joked about young people having that “snail slime” pussy juice that gloops all over your fingers while masturbating, and that definitely returned for me in full force. I haven’t been this wet in ages!
What my orgasms were like before testosterone
A year and a half ago, before I even thought about possibly taking testosterone, masturbation was a quick in-and-out job unless I was doing it with a partner or under the influence of cannabis. I had a lot of great sex and incredible stamina.
Around that time, I was diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), which can also lead to heightened levels of testosterone. I also had a hormonal intrauterine device (IUD), which helped me feel more comfortable in my body. My orgasms were intense and frequent, and I felt very blessed.
After getting my IUD removed, I struggled with the switch of hormones in my body. My sex drive went down, and I had stronger feelings of gender dysphoria. Luckily, I was able to talk to the right doctors, therapists, and community support groups to help me name what was going on and come up with great solutions.
Masturbating was a great way to stay connected with my body, but I found that my sessions looked a little bit different than before. Instead of long 8-minute sessions, I felt sore and easily tired after a minute or two.
My old sexual behaviors allowed me to relieve stress and power through a long day, but this new phase without hormonal assistance had me feeling tired and dreary after masturbating. For the first time, I had to be really mindful about where I could fit masturbating into my schedule so that I wasn’t dozing off for important meetings out of tiredness.
What my orgasms were like after testosterone
Holy shit, thank Goddess for these hormones. Not only do I feel more at home and connected to my body, but my sex drive is off the charts. I haven’t felt this way in nearly a year. Now that I’m able to have 4-10 minute sessions and back-to-back orgasms without feeling too tired, I feel like myself again.
My orgasms are longer and so much more intense. I’m surprised I didn’t break this vibrator in half with how hard my vaginal walls were gripping the toy. I ride a rainbow wave of multiple orgasms that leave my body twitching.
These past few months, the sensations of my orgasms are focused more on my crotch area. But after testosterone, I feel every little twitch of every muscle celebrating the sensations.
Everyday is a great day to be gay
Since I’m single and very cautious regarding COVID-19 safety, I don’t have a partner to celebrate this sexual energy with. Some days, I feel like a teenage boy who gets an erection every five minutes from the slightest stimulation. I had to start working out more to put that energy somewhere.
When I was thinking about starting this hormone, my sex drive was the last thing on my mind. I thought that I started taking this because I wanted to look more masculine, but the best gift that this transition has given me is the ability to be present. If I knew that the sex would be this good, I would have swallowed my fears and started earlier.
My sexuality is a big part of who I am. Having my sex drive back feels like a jubilant homecoming.
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Hormone Therapy for Transgender Patients.Translational Andrology and Urology: US National Library of Medicine. 2016.↩︎
Testosterone and sexual risk among transmen: A mixed methods exploratory study. Cult Health Sex: US National Library of Medicine. 2016.↩︎