A Detransitioner’s Perspective: Awakening from the Dream of Gender Utopia

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Angling the camera just right, after thirty or so attempts, I finally take the perfect picture. All other photos which provided evidence of the uncomfortable truth are swiftly deleted from my phone’s photo album. Without hesitation, I immediately share the selfie on an online forum for transgender people. Knowing in my heart, from the other posts that no matter what I shared, I would be safe from negative commentary.

“You look amazing” …. “Wow, even cisgender men will want you!”  

The comments stack up, everyone assures me that I not only look like a woman but that if I transition it would be extremely easy for me to pass as a woman. 

This was the back end of 2013, I was 25, an adult, but a vulnerable adult with high traits of autism, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and substance misuse issues. 

Like many, I was captured by the idea that I was less than perfect. The solution to my imperfection was to be laid on a path that would lead to a degree of unimaginable self-destruction, through irreversible surgeries that have turned me into a lifelong medical patient, reliant on synthetic hormones, as well as being under constant supervision for ongoing complications related to the deeply invasive surgery.

This was all in the name of the promised Gender Utopia, where we were all free to be ourselves, express ourselves without boundaries, and celebrate our individuality in an explosion of liberation and autonomy, yet, at the age of 35, almost a decade after embarking on this deeply destructive journey, I’ve come to realize this is not the Gender Utopia we were promised. 

The lies live within the language, even seemingly innocuous terms like “Male to Female” (MTF) sell a certainty that one can change their sex through modern medical science. This is why, even in detransition, I do not call myself a Male to Female to Male (MTFTM). The plain truth of the matter is, that I was and will forever be male, and no amount of surgeries or hormones will ever change that reality.

By Ritchie Herron

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