Interview with Yours Truly

Posted by – December 21, 2013

I haven’t done one of these in forever and a day, but here’s a brief interview with me by a very lovely crossdresser named Vivienne who asked me a bunch of questions. I answered most of them.

Here are the questions I did answer:

  1. It’s been several years since She’s Not the Man I Married was published. For those of us who don’t know the latest, could you give us a brief update on where things are with Betty’s transgender journey? … Does this mean hormones and surgery, or something short of that? Legal gender change?

  2. I completely understand your desire to write My Husband Betty, but did you realise or suspect at the time the impact it would have on you? Did you foresee that it would become part of your identity, at least your public one? And is that OK?

  3. What are your plans for your next book?

  4. What else do you write about which isn’t to do with gender? From my point of view, you seem like someone with a point to make, and I suspect you would have made it in a different area if the cards had fallen a little differently. I just wonder what that area might have been.

  5. I admit to feelings of envy when I read your books and realise how open you are to the idea of Betty’s transgender status. I suspect that a question you get asked frequently by crossdressers is: “How can I get my wife to be more like you?”

  6. But my question to you is this: has your acceptance of Betty ever led to problems? Have you been the subject of hostility for your views? …Why do you consider yourself a pain in the ass?

  7. What’s the most difficult thing for you about having a trans husband?

  8. What’s the best thing for you about having a trans husband?

  9. What advice would you give to a woman (perhaps a wife) whose partner has just told her about his crossdressing for the first time?

  10. A theme of my blog has become my (qualified) acceptance of the Freund-Blanchard autogynephilia model. I wondered what your current view about this hypothesis is (you touch on it in My Husband Betty, but I wondered if your views have evolved). … Old men? You mean scientists? Or perhaps priests?

  11. Most crossdressers insist they are straight men attracted to women. Yet some gay men crossdress. What’s your take on that?

  12. What famous person would you most like to meet and why?

Do go read the whole thing. It’s a very smart blog.

1 Comment on Interview with Yours Truly

  1. JennL says:

    I found Vivienne’s support for the AGP model perplexing coming from a scientist. Present in the blog is the stated belief in the behaviorists justification to support the huge jump to a model for causation despite evidence placing that model in dispute. Psychology has been criticized for the failure to observe or correct for experimenter error and for being closed to critique from other scientific disciplines many times in the past; leaving ample reason to remain suspicious of conclusions that so many find objection to.

    While there is no disputing that a phenomena has been detected (in some trans, straight and gay persons of either sex it appears); describing that as the motivational cause for the desire for a defined group of trans people to transition is unfounded (in my opinion) because we have no real understanding of conscious perception other than as individuals we “know” we experience it.

    As a thought experiment imagine we have three computers called male, female and trans. Each of the three computers use a different manufacturers micro processor and are programmed in three different languages. Their programming however makes all three computer displays behave exactly the same way to certain sets of key sequence from the perspective of the user who is not allowed to see inside the identical looking packages the computers share (something any computer scientist will tell you is entirely possible). How could you say that a specific behavioral response exhibited by the computer called trans is only motivated by x when similar behavior is observed in the computers labeled male and female too?
    In my opinion this is a possible falsification of the AGP model given data made available by other researchers and it seems like the only Popperian (after Karl Popper) falsification possible for such a theory. Any ad hoc patches would just make AGP look like it belongs to a degenerating research program according to the work of philosopher Imre Lakatos criteria.

    The genetic difference between male and female can’t be taken as justification to favor any one particular mechanism over the many that might give rise to the inner experience informing an individuals feelings about his/her gender identity or motivating certain types of behavior. I think you have stated this well in the past Helen “there is more than one road to woman”.

    While a self defined trans woman can’t really say she is female because of genetics (an issue for some), the use of the gendered term woman and the need to use feminine pronouns when referring to her cannot be disputed if that is how she defines herself.

    As Albert Einstein put it: “Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of truth and knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the Gods”.

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