The effects of Hormone Replacement Therapy as they apply to the transgender community are still being collected and documented. However, there is enough information available for those looking to start to know the overall certainties that come with beginning the process. Regardless of that being the case, one truth will likely always be a constant: Your mileage will vary.
With that said, I’ll be sharing as much as I deem relevant for educational purposes about the effects of HRT as they apply to my physiology and psychology. For the sake of optimal reading, I’ve decided to separate them into multiple parts as well.
This post will cover the physiological changes that have occurred to substantially lessen the presence of body dysphoria and help me evolve into the woman I was meant to be. This will include caveats as well, since you can’t exactly medically treat yourself without experiencing some unwanted, but accepted side effects.
Plus, it’s good to have a healthy sense of humor when it comes to one’s body.
The effects of HRT are specific to my genes and are not representative of what may or may not happen to your body. Though not always possible in many cases due to the nature of healthcare & medical awareness, I highly recommend seeking medical and/or professional assistance before taking any dosage as blood pressure, hormone imbalance, & kidney issues are some potential threats that should be monitored. As stated prior, your mileage will vary.
Physiological Changes & Side Effects
- 1) Bye Bye Pizza Face: My face used to be terribly oily. Mostly on the forehead. Like you could dab a napkin on it. This was no longer the case about a year into it.
- 2) Silky Smooth: My skin in general was like you’d expect a man’s to be. Rough and coarse. After about a year on HRT, my best friend commented that my hands were quite soft. Three years in, women have commented on their softness which still surprises me.
- 3) Getting Nippy: I’ve never liked the cold, but prior to HRT, I was able to withstand it much better than I am now. In the first year, my skin had become noticeably more translucent, mainly on the back of my hands. Increased sensitivity makes elements hit me much harder than before.
- 4) Bra Not Included: Unfortunately, transitioning means you have to learn about bra sizes. Otherwise, you’ll reveal just how nippy you are. If you catch my drift. Growing pains in the breast area were quite common during Year 1 & 2. Those pains have been replaced with feeling pain if I bump into something. Protip for the guys: If a woman has ever said ouch when bumping their chest into something or because you sideswiped her by mistake, they weren’t lying.
5) Flat Is Justice?: I’ve always been relatively fit, but having a board for a chest unless I was flexing was a highly dysphoric point for me early in my transition. As I said before, the first 2 years were mainly for nipple growth (There! I said it! Happy now?) but only in the last year has there been a noticeable increase in breast tissue.
6). Dem Hips: This really wasn’t something I noticed until a female friend of mine pointed it out to me a year into starting HRT. A guy friend also noticed that I have more “junk in the trunk” as they say. Three years in, I’ve ripped my favorite pair of skinny jeans at the crotch, likely due to the shift in my body fat…and repeated washing. I swear I’m not gaining weight! Speaking of weight…
7) Jacked No More: The two years leading up to starting HRT, I was exercising pretty heavily as I was obsessed about losing my minor love handles, and doing my Poison cosplay. Due to my genes, I’ve always been pretty muscular-looking, but never wanted to be as “jacked” as my shoulders made me. Once HRT was in full swing, I lost my ability to attain the same torso/leg results that I had obtained before with rigorous exercising and became weaker in my upper body. This was likely due to no longer having access to testosterone and my muscle weight being shifted towards body fat. Sadly, I’ve yet to be able to recover from this change, and have decided to seek a trainer once life stops kicking my ass.
8) Poofy Face: Well not really as it’s hardly noticeable, but thanks to fat redistribution, my face was able to become a little less jagged in shape mainly in the cheekbone area. I still have natural facial contouring that females with round faces use makeup to achieve, which I’m not mad about at all.
9) Bathroom Buddy: You know how women are usually seen going to the bathroom together? Well, I get to do that a lot now because I now have to pee every half hour! Literally. A well-known side effect of taking spironolactone is frequent peeing. I’ve since started taking my dosage at night to avoid much of this as my bladder is weak enough already.
Do you know of anyone who has experienced similar changes? Maybe completely different ones? Be sure to leave your replies in the Comments so I can respond! Also, please be sure to “LIKE” this post if you enjoyed it!
In my next entry, I’ll be going over emotional and mental changes I’ve gone through due to HRT. Be sure to subscribe to be notified on future posts!