The landscape of dating and developing loving relationships can be a tough area to navigate for someone who is transgender. Not only do they have to deal with all the normal relationship issues that cis people deal with, but they also have to deal with any transgender issues they carry into the relationship. It can be a tough situation for both the transgender and cis participant. Here are a few tips that will hopefully make the transition from single to dating a transgender person a little easier for both of you.
Be Prepared for Family Woes – When you tell your family that your new significant other is transgender there will most likely be some pushback. As much as people are trying to be understanding towards transgender people, there is still a lot of uneasiness towards us and that can be heightened when we are dating one of their family. It is very important that you stick up for your new partner as the pain resulting from not defending them to your family can seriously damage the relationship.
The friends shake-up – Most of your friends should be okay with your choices though you may run into a friend or two that do not respect your choice. They may decide to remain friends but will only see you without your new partner. There will be some that may even decide to terminate their contacts with you. Honestly, those are probably not the kind of friends you need in your life and if you approach their departure in that way it will not make you resent your new love.
The Best of Both Worlds – Entering into a relationship with a transgender person is really not getting the best of both worlds. The transgender person has always been the same gender even when they presented differently. There absolutely is an exception to this tip with gender fluid transgender people.
The Changing Landscape – The transgender partner will always be in a state of transition to some degree depending on how far along they are. If you, for example, begin to date a transgender woman early in transition there will be major changes and you need to be prepared for how that affects the relationship. In some cases these changes will also affect how you are intimate with each other.
Pronoun Minefields – You need to be very careful with pronouns because as a lover, an incorrect pronoun will stab at your partner’s heart more than anyone else using the incorrect pronoun. You have a backstage pass to their feelings; use it wisely.
Their Junk and Junk Intentions – Before cementing the relationship, you do need to be aware of what they have between their legs and you need to be okay with it. You also need to know what they plan to do with their unmentionables. Whether they are getting surgery or planning to keep what they have, could play a factor later on in the relationship. If you really like a lady with a member, you may not want to date one who plans to have it inverted into a lady part.
The No Go Zone – Some transgender people will be very sensitive to you touching some areas. For example, a transgender woman who has not had her facial hair removed might be very apprehensive of you touching her face if she has stubble. Similarly, a trans male may not like you touching his chest. These are triggers for uneasy gender dysphoria feelings.
The Old Name – Do not insist on knowing their old pre-transition name. Some of us do not reveal it as it comes with a lot of stigma from our pasts. Others may be more forthcoming, Personally, I do not share it because I fear it can be used as an emotional weapon against me in a fight.
To Use it or Not to Use it – Some transgender people will absolutely not use their old equipment when lovemaking and you need to understand any boundaries that exist in your partner as you don’t want to find out in the middle of some intense passion. Others, are fine with using their equipment so it is worthwhile asking about it before you initiate the lovemaking stage in the relationship.
Take it Slow – For many transgender people a relationship may be awkward at first as they work out their place in it and figure it all out on the fly. This is especially true of transgender people early into transition. The best advice is to take it slow and communicate a lot to ensure you are both ready for each step you take. The beautiful part is that the relationship can become very rewarding and is worth all the extras you put in to make it work.