How to defeat the ‘Paraphilia by Association’ argument…

by Transcend Everything on August 4, 2014

I’ve just been rereading Anne Lawrence, and one passage particularly struck me: the relationship between other self directed sexual behaviors and crossdreaming. Anne Lawrence uses these behaviors as proof that crossdreaming (autogynephilia) is a paraphilia and that any resulting female identification the result of said paraphilia.

The argument

We know that for every sexual preference there exists a subgroup of people who are not just attracted to the target, but attracted to the idea of themselves as the target. Thus, there is a small percentage of paedophiles who are turned on by the idea of being children, a number of plush toy fetishists who are turned on by the idea of being plush toys, and… a number of heterosexual guys who are turned on by the idea of being women etc. Clearly, this sexual desire to be the target is caused by a paraphilia; obviously a person who wants to be a plush toy can not claim that they are a plush toy trapped in a human body…such a thing is not possible…they simply have a sexual fetish for being a plush toy and that’s what motivates their desire to be a plush toy.

Crossdreamers, however, try to deny that this impeccable logic applies to them. They claim that their sexual desire to be a woman is not a paraphilia but the result of the fact that they are, in some sense, women. However, given the fact we already know there are a whole family of sexual paraphilias that involve wanting to be the thing the person is attracted to, isn’t it far more likely that the desire to be a woman in a crossdreamer is part of the same family of paraphilias? Of course it is! Therefore, we can say that it’s the sexual desire to be a woman that makes a crossdreamer want to be a woman…and not some feminine essence within him, as the prevailing transgender narrative claims.

My reaction

I had to reread the passage several times. It is an extremely powerful argument for ‘autogynephiliac transsexualism’. Cross gender arousal on its own could be indicative of feminine essence, but if you then discover there’s a whole family of cross-type-arousals ranging from cross species arousal to cross generation arousal to cross object arousal (none of which are the result of being an animal/child/plushtoy trapped in a man’s body) it makes a significant case for the sexual origins of female identification in crossdreamers.

The competition

When I originally put fingers to keyboard my plan was to publish my own refutation of this argument, but I had a sudden, playful desire to throw it out to my readers. The challenge is therefore to write the best refutation you can of Anne Lawrence’s argument for autogynephilia by association with other paraphilias.

The prize

NewEstrella

The best refutation will win the title ‘Transcend Movement Theorist Of The Year 2016’ (I admit it’s not exactly a CV game changer but…) and a six pack of Estrella Dam (there’s a star in the Estrella logo, thus the ‘star’ prize). I hope to initiate a tradition on this website where each summer we pose an extra tricky question; so now we have this year’s question you can get thinking and get writing!

The Rules

All entries must be submitted under a false name. This is to avoid accusations of bias to Sandra or Jack or some other friend. Obviously…if I know your e-mail address then use a different one. You can submit either here in ‘comments,’ or on the Lefora Crosdreamers forum or the Crossdreamer reddit or to my email address felixconrad45@gmail.com

Important: remember to stay on topic! We are not looking for wider arguments about autogynephilia (as we’ve done them to death.) What we want is a refutation of the specific argument outlined above. No one has satisfactorily dealt with it before (in my opinion) so it’s worth writing about.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Betty B August 4, 2016 at 1:11 pm

For Anne Lawrence’s argument to be true for all male to transgender people who experience female embodiment fantasies, all of them will have to be exclusively autoerotic, and unable to get turned on by having sex with others, either as a man or as a woman.

This is not the case. Some may appear to be completely autoerotic, but most are not.

Many MTF trangender people who experience female embodiment fantasies are also able to enjoy being a man with a woman.

Trans women report that the tendency to focus on the transformation and the feminization in their sexual lives, disappears post-transitioning.

By comparing furries and trans women you have already accepted the premise for the fetish argument: That everything that applies to sex and gender can be reduced to a fetish.

The fact is that for MTF trans people in general this sexual desire is only one of many reasons for dreaming of becoming a woman.

An equally legitimate and logical conclusion would be to say that transgender people are driven by a need to perform traditional female activities or the need to express traditional feminine personality traits.

These arguments have also been made. I am not saying that these are better explanations, but these “sets” of factors are as valid as the fetish one.

In other words: Instead of grouping MTF transgender people with furries, you could group them with female nurses or shy and timid women.

Most MTF transgender people get turned on by the idea of being a woman having sex with another woman or man. That is perfectly natural, and has little in common with the desire to have sex as a teddy bear or cutting your leg off.

Again: Why focus on the extreme, when Occam gives you a simpler explanation?

Reply

Joanna October 25, 2016 at 5:23 pm

My main problem with AGP is of course that it includes the argumentation that a long period of fetishistic crossdressing precedes the creation of a false female identity. Most of us have these cross gender feelings very early on in life and I thought I was a girl until told otherwise.

I dressed secretly in my room without any arousal for years until I hit puberty and then began to have guilty feelings around my activities. I had begun to notice that my desire to be female was actively conspiring with my desire to be WITH a female.

I cannot prove it but what I think happens is that this dual desire becomes hard wired during puberty and creates a hybrid sexuality which can’t seem to separate these two desires.

We are then left with an abnormal sexuality which is impacted by a transsexual identity which likely originates at birth but for which we have yet to fully explain scientifically. In fact we can explain neither of Blanchard’s types fully.

If I had begun my female interests at puberty then I would be able to buy into a self created female narrative but because I did not originate the desire and it was not sexual in nature I cannot buy into the argument.

The other point which you make so well is that if the interest is exclusively sexual in nature why would you deliberately castrate that interest. It would be best to stay male and enjoy your fetish to your heart’s desire. Lawrence has an awful time in her writing explaining this one and fashions a feeble tale about love morphing over the life of a long marriage. Nice try but it doesn’t work!

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