The queer community has grown over the years to encompass many different groups of people of varying sexual orientations and gender identity backgrounds.
This is because queer people have become more visible and more accepted by most people who are heteronormative.
However, with all the new groups joining the queer community, it can be quite hard to keep track of all the designations different groups of people know themselves by and others have to know them by.
This is especially true for different queer groups who have been active in society for a long time, but have remained in the shadows or have not been as large as other groups.
With this in mind, we decided to write an article about one of these groups of people, those who are MTF trans people. But what does MTF mean? Why is it an important distinction? That is what we are here to inform you about.
MTF: What Does It Mean?
MTF stands for ‘Male to Female’, which is a term used to describe a transgender woman who is a woman that was assigned the gender male at birth.
Trans women are generally people who have a female gender identity, but who were born into a male body and are currently in the process of or have completed their transition to physically feel outside how they feel inside.
The reason they wish to do this is that they will feel some kind of gender dysphoria, which may be significant or moderate, but the point is that it affects them in their day-to-day life.
In order to achieve the outer body and the lifestyle that they wish, they will embark on a process of social and medical transformation.
This can include hormone replacement therapy – where you take hormones of your chosen gender (in this case female hormones) and use other treatments to repress your body’s own hormone production – and often surgery, whether that be breast augmentation, facial feminization, or Gender Confirmation Surgery.
Some transgender women will feel comfortable with their dysphoria with just presenting as a woman, while others may have to go the surgical and medical route.
Each transition is different, and each has its own benefits and drawbacks to the person experiencing them.
Another thing to note, very quickly, is the term for transgender men that acts as an opposite to MTF, which is FTM or ‘Female to Male’. This term is used to describe transgender men, who are men that are assigned the gender woman at birth.
What Does HRT Entail For A Transgender Woman?
HRT or hormone replacement therapy is a type of therapy for women who are transitioning from their male assigned gender.
It involves taking the female hormone estrogen, which helps with the development of female characteristics on the body, and the anti-androgens, which completely reduces the production of male hormones in the body.
It is the most common way that transgender women transition into their preferred gender.
The effects of the hormones help to develop the following characteristics on the body:
- Breast development.
- Body fat redistribution.
- Reduced chest, arm, back, and facial hair.
- Decreased muscle mass, muscle development, and strength.
- Reduced oil production in the skin.
- Shrinking skin pores.
- Thinner and drier skin.
The characteristics that hormones can affect are not just limited to the body itself, they can also affect the emotions of the person taking the hormones.
For those, who are dysphoric and using hormones, they can expect to experience the following changes:
- Higher self-esteem.
- Alleviation of gender dysphoria.
- Decreased depression symptoms.
- Presenting more confidence in their day to day.
- Confidently taking up new interests and hobbies.
- Mood swings.
- Heightened sense of emotions.
Finally, HRT can also affect your reproductive systems and sexual desires.
This is normally seen in the following ways:
- Decreased sexual desire or wants.
- Fewer ejaculations.
- Lower volume per ejaculation.
- Decrease in testicle size.
As you can see, the effect of HRT on a transgender women’s physical and mental state, and while there can be some negative side effects, generally transgender women (and transgender men) feel a lot better about their lives and their selves once they begin HRT.
Preferred Terms For Transgender Women
As with every group within the LGBTQ+ spectrum, there are preferred terms that you should use and outdated or slur terms that you should never use.
The reason we bring this up is because, although they are not currently outdated, MTF and FTM are terms that some people would prefer not to be known by.
Instead, it would be better to refer to someone as a transgender man or transgender woman (transgender man and transgender woman for short).
Sometimes people even prefer the terms ‘trans’ or ‘trans*’, as it encompasses everyone within that community without separating them.
Some outdated terms it is best not to use are transsexual or transgendered. The first is because it refers to what appears to be a sexual orientation and being transgender is a gender dysphoric experience, not a sexual one.
The second is just about grammar and how it appears like you a lumping the whole transgender community into one dismissive category, which can be upsetting for people.
The big no-no terms are things that relate to whether a person has had a specific operation on their body or that relate to stereotypes and slurs established by heteronormative people.
For starters, both are intensely private matters, and you should never, ever relate anyone’s gender to that of a commodity that can be bought or sold.
If you are struggling with what to call someone, you should ask them what they prefer to be called. It is better to ask, than it is to call them something that may upset them or put them in a bad place mentally.
MTF is a term often used to describe a transgender woman who was assigned male at birth.
It is a term that has been used for a long time to define transgender women from transgender men, but times are changing, and it may become an outdated term in the near future.