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Article Sexualities 0 0 1—21 Gay, bisexual, and queer! The Author s Reprints and permissions: Participants drew sharp distinctions between gay and queer sexual fields.
Specific websites for seeking sex also emerged as important fields with their own internal logics. Sexual field choice was heavily impacted by social and medical gender affirmation. Participant narratives highlighted the interplay of personal and socio-historical transitions— including accessing medical transition technologies, the rise of virtual sexual fields, and increasing trans male visibility—in producing rapidly changing sexual opportunity structures.
Comfort and success navigating extant sexual fields varied, with many reporting some degree of satisficing to balance the potentials for pleasure and risk. Trans men are individuals assigned a female sex at birth but who identify as male or masculine. While some trans men predominantly or exclusively dated men before transi- tion, a shift in sexual attraction and interests toward men coinciding with social gender transition or initiation of hormone therapy is a common theme in the nar- ratives of trans men who have sex with men Devor, ; Rowniak and Chesla, ; Sevelius, In one study of trans men, more than half reported increased attraction to cisgender men after taking testosterone Davis and Meier, Some trans men report conscious attraction to other men before and after gender transition, but describe reluctance to pursue sex with men before beginning to live as male or masculinizing physically Rowniak and Chesla, Thus, regardless of what terms they use to describe themselves, bisexual behavior becomes a default for such trans people.
Indeed, there is some evidence that trans men are more bisexual in their desire and practice than Erotic male physical exam by male gay zakk cisgender men who have sex with men Bockting et al. However, Namaste has challenged the tendency of queer theorists and sociologists Erotic male physical exam by male gay zakk sexualities to impose queer worldviews on trans sexual experiences.
Given that most people in North American society iden- tify within binary gender and sexual orientation categories, it should not come as a surprise that some trans men identify strongly as gay or bisexual, or heterosexual men Vidal-Ortiz, Williams, Weinberg, and Rosenberger Along these same lines, Bockting et al.
Sociologists have tended to explore questions of sexual identity and micro-level practice in relation to gender transition and shifting embodiment Devor, ; Dozier, ; Rubin, ; Schleifer, ; Vidal-Ortiz, ; Williams et al. This work has uncovered valuable insights. For instance, within gay male sexualized environments, being erotically valued and desired by cisgender gay men can be an important source of gender identity validation for trans men Reisner et al.
Rather, in a recent review of the public health literature on the sexual health of trans men who have sex with men Reisner and Murchison,one can observe that most studies focus on behavior sex with non-trans men; e. Considering the high prevalence of bisexual identity among trans men Bauer et al. We draw on qualitative data from a community-based research study on the sexual health of trans men who have sex with men in Ontario, Canada.
Method These data Erotic male physical exam by male gay zakk from a larger community-based research project led by a team, a majority of whom were gay, bisexual, or queer trans men. Study participants had to identify as trans men or with another transmasculine female-to-male spectrum gender identity and live in Ontario, Canada. Ethical clearance of the study was obtained through the University of Windsor and Wilfrid Laurier University.
The questionnaire was followed by a semi-structured interview conducted in person, by phone, or by Skype, that explored such topics as: Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed, and coded using NVivo10 to organize the data.
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Data were analyzed using a grounded theory approach Charmaz,with constant comparative analysis across all transcripts. Initial coding of the interview transcripts revealed particularly rich narratives concerning the search Erotic male physical exam by male gay zakk sexual and romantic partners throughout the gender transition process. The co-authors comprised an analytic subcommittee of the research team, which reviewed all the codes from the transcripts that treated ways of meeting partners and engagements with physical and virtual sites for partner-seeking.
We sought to remain as close as possible to the language and perceptions of trans men themselves in characterizing their experiences, taking trans culture as a given rather than as a problem in need of explanation. Relationship statuses were diverse: Some indicated more than one type of partner.
Consistent with previous research Reisner et al. Among our par- ticipants, a tension is often evident between erotic desire e. To maximize anonymity, however, a particularly import- ant consideration for this community-based research study of a relatively tight-knit community, only broad age and ethnoracial categories for each speaker are reported.
Queer versus gay Many of the trans men we interviewed drew sharp distinctions between gay and queer communities, socio-sexual venues, and individual cisgender men.
I separate them into cis queer dudes and cis gay dudes. However, this erotic and social capital was not viewed positively by all trans men.
They were also spaces in which some participants, who were not consistently read as male, felt more wel- come and even celebrated. I love going to spaces and knowing that people are going to respect my pronouns.
I largely access just queer spaces [rather than spaces where] men are having sex.
Like, [well-known bar in gay village]. One participant explained that while he certainly did not feel welcome in every gay venue as a racialized trans man, this was not a universal experience across venues: In fact, one participant wryly observed that: A decade ago, gay men were adamantly transphobic.
Through porn, through pol- itical discussion, through a proliferation of images, cisgender men have started to notice that an FTM is a viable quantity.