The following two comments came from two very different men, but they have one thing in common: They are both attracted to preoperative, transgender women (a person born a male who has partially transitioned to being a female but still has a penis).
- I am laser focused on my attraction to trans women; I feel no sexual attraction in the absence of a penis. I am also attracted to feminine men. I came out to my wife but can’t explain to her why she cannot meet my needs as a gay man.
- I’m in my sixties and in a sexless marriage. After discovering “she-males” and “fem boy” gay porn, I decided to give it a try. It turned out to be great sex, both as the penetrative and the penetrated partner. I’d rather be with a woman, but it’s a lot easier hooking up with men than it is with women, and like me, most of them just want sex.
These two men are sexually attracted to the female body but only if that body has a penis. The technical term for this is a mouthful: “gynandromorphophila,” sometimes shortened to GAMP. The technical term is more understandable when broken down into its Greek roots: gyn = female, andro = male, morph = form, philia = love,or in other words, a love for the body of someone who has both male and female characteristics.
The two questions I hear most commonly from GAMPs are (1) What made me this way? and (2) Am I gay, or if not, what am I? We know very little about what causes sexual attraction and even less about why a man might be erotically drawn to trans women. The first correspondent above suggested that his attraction was “laser focused” on the female form with a penis attached. The second correspondent suggested his attraction was more a matter of convenience; the fact that he was both the insertive partner as well as the receptive one would suggest that the explanation is more complicated than just availability.
I do think we can dismiss the idea that sexual preferences are the result of how you were toilet trained or wanting to have sex with your mother. My own belief—without facts—is that these issues are most likely a combination of DNA, psychological development,and life circumstances, and that these factors are dynamic and change over time.
The question “What am I?”is equally complicated. One could say that the need for a penis clearly suggests that a man is not heterosexual, but even a truly heterosexual man can find the sight of an erect penis to be eroticizing. A bisexual can be attracted to either a man or a woman, but that isn’t the same as being attracted to someone who has body parts of both a man and a woman, and a gay person might find the parts of the opposite gender off-putting.
Not much research has been done on this subject, but an often quoted study suggests that GAMP men have sexual arousal that is more similar to heterosexual men than to gay men, but that GAMP men are more aroused by a trans woman than to women in general. The study also suggested that GAMP men were eroticized by the idea of themselves being a woman.
How common are GAMP men? No one knows for sure, and you won’t find an answer in medical literature. You might, however, get some suggestion by checking the personals on Craigslist. These hidden desires are well known in the porn industry: 1.4 percent of the searches on Pornhub are for women with penises, and she-males is rather frequently queried on the internet. This data suggests that people have fantasies they wish they didn’t have and don’t mention to others except through the keyboards on their computers.
Many of the terms that are used to refer to trans women have come out of the porn industry (she-males,T girls, chicks with dicks, lady boys, fem boys and trannies) and tend to objectify and dehumanize these trans women. We may not know how to label their sexual orientation, but we must remember that both these women and the GAMPs who desire them are all part of the human family.