By Liana Jacob
THIS TRANSGENDER MAN started dating his current wife when he was still female but was so ashamed of his body that he would never let her see his genitals during INTIMACY – but after a DOUBLE MASTECTOMY and PENIS CONSTRUCTION he’s letting it all hang out and says his marriage is steamier because of it.
Business owner, Jackson Fox (46) from Texas, USA, who was born biologically female with the name Rachel, had always felt his body didn’t match who he really was.
He was so depressed in his own skin that he would rarely socialise with his friends and it would affect his previous relationships. He hid his true self from his family for 38 years for fear of being rejected by them.
In October 2012, he met the love of his life, Emily (34), through a mutual friend and while he wasn’t looking for a serious relationship at the time, they fell for each other. They got engaged a year later in March 2013.
After some time in therapy, Jackson had a breakdown and realised that he had to reveal who he really was to his fiancé and to stop hiding. However, when he told her he wanted to transition just two months after they got engaged, she broke off their engagement in shock and confusion.
It turned out she just needed time to process Jackson’s revelation and just a few months later she told him he was her soulmate and that she would support him through everything. She became a strong presence in his life throughout his surgeries.
He underwent numerous hormonal treatments and surgeries, including a double mastectomy, hysterectomy and oophorectomy, the removal of the uterus and ovaries, a metoidioplasty, also known as meta which is a term used to describe the surgical procedure that uses existing genital tissue to form a penis and a phalloplasty, which is the construction of a penis.
He now says that he can be who he really is and while he felt self-conscious to let his wife see his body before his transition, he now feels secure in himself to reveal his body without the need to hide, which he admits has improved the intimate side to their relationship
“I always felt like I was a guy; I was miserable and never understood what was going on with me, why I couldn’t fit in etc. to the point I wanted to kill myself,” Jackson said.
“It affected me socially in the way that I rarely went out and only saw my closest friends. My girlfriend at the time hated how depressed I was and how I was angry all the time.
“I hid my life from my family for thirty-eight years. They never knew how I lived my life away from home; I would act and dress a certain way when I visited. It was a vicious cycle. I felt like a liar to my family and my chosen family.
“Growing up, I always wanted to be one of the boys. When I started to go through puberty, I was so angry that I wasn’t going through it like my brother was. I was developing breasts and I knew that wasn’t right.
“I started living as a guy when I was thirty but did not know what I was missing as my body didn’t match how I dressed.
“Emily and I met in Oct 2012 through a mutual friend; I had just come out of a long-term relationship and I wasn’t looking.
“She was also twelve years younger than me and I was her second same-sex relationship and I wasn’t really up for that, but she wore me down.
“We first got engaged March 2013. I had a breakdown in therapy and realised I had to tell her and not hide who I am.
“If we were meant to be together, we would be. She broke it off after I told her I was going to transition.
“Her reaction, anger, confusion and sadness; she wanted nothing to do with me because I betrayed her. In her defence it wasn’t fair as she thought she was marrying a woman not a man.
“She took the time she needed and said I was her soulmate and that we would do all this together. We were married November 14, 2015.”
Jackson says that since having his surgeries, Emily has found ways to show her support for him by taking time off her job to drive him to each of his appointments.
For a phalloplasty, the procedure included closing the vaginal canal, creating a penile shaft, shaping the head of the penis, lengthening the urethra so that urine can be passed while standing and creating a scrotum. The patient can choose whether or not to have this procedure done.
During this procedure, surgeons use a flap of skin from the forearm to build the shaft of the penis.
“I started seeing an endocrinologist to get a prescription for testosterone. I had double mastectomy, hysterectomy, metiodplasty stage 1 and 2 then phalloplasty,” he said.
“Emily has been through all of them with me and understood this was what I needed to feel complete. She has been in complete support. With her being a nurse, it has helped so much.
“It was definitely something for her to get used to. It’s a big change to go from a woman’s anatomy to a man’s anatomy for sure.
“But I never really let her see me without boxers on when we were intimate as I hated that part of me and wasn’t comfortable being touched.
“Now all of that has changed; she feels comfortable and has no issues, I believe it helped that I now feel comfortable.
“She has shown encouragement for me to follow what makes me happy and embraced who I am. She has loved me unconditionally. She took time off work to be with me for each procedure and went to therapy with me.
“This surgery has changed how I feel drastically both mentally and my confidence in being in public bathrooms. I can actually look at myself in the mirror and not look away. I feel like a complete man inside and out.
“A positive of having a penis would be that it feels natural and more fluid being in bed and feeling more sexual.
“The only negative would be that I’m having to get used to having it and not being mindful – if I can be so bold in saying – when it gets heated, it can get slammed around as it is still healing.
“You don’t have to like it or agree with it but just live by the cardinal rule to just be kind. The best way to really educate yourself is to go to meetings; know the community and become an ally of who you choose.”