There might be as many “trans attractions” as there are transitionary processes transgender people go through.
That could explain why trans attracted men come in so many different “flavors” making it hard to describe “trans attraction” with one definition.
There are trans attracted men who see transgender women as women, for example. These men also date cis-women, seeing no real difference between them and their transgender counterparts. Presumably, guys in this category don’t care what’s “down there”, or they may care a great deal: they may prefer only transgender women who have “gone all the way” surgery-wise.
There are trans attracted men who see women as women and accept (heartily in some cases) that some women have penises. This is not always a fetish, although there can be a period where men fetishize women with penises, just as there are men who fetishize other aspects of womanhood, and women who do the same. These men probably are the most visible as far as transgender women are concerned. They also tend to be the most vilified because they enjoy sexual expression with women with penises in much the same way that some cis women love strapping on a plastic penis and pegging men.
There are trans attracted men who don’t “bottom.” These guys like being sexually aggressive. By aggressive, I mean they express “outward” motivated energies as opposed to “inward” or “receiving” motivated energies. Aggressive isn’t always negative.
There are trans attracted men who love receiving. They enjoy the pleasure of being penetrated, of giving up of themselves, and find joyful self expression in a sense of self-control so total that they can give up themselves to another and find immense satisfaction in that act.
There are trans attracted men who see transgender women as a special kind of woman. “Special” doesn’t mean odd. It is a kind of veneration. They see transgender women as capable, courageous, and powerful, able to transcend typical female archetypes and, as a result, are life-changers for themselves and their partners. William describes his wife Nikki as this kind of person. He swears his wife transformed his life in ways unimaginable.
There are trans attracted men who are activists, focusing their energies on making society more encompassing of all expressions of humanity. They are courageous people who take a lot of abuse from the women they love, fully aware of the tension existing between their love for women and the revulsion those women have for them.
There are trans attracted men who struggle with their reality. They don’t understand their trans attraction, or, do understand it but don’t want to. They are invisible and lurk in the dark, trying to avoid their attraction through alcohol, drugs or compulsive porn consumption or denial. Like the drug-addicted, they occasionally seek temporary desire-gratification through serial one-time flings or encounters with working girls, and through Craigslist hookups.
There are trans attracted men who consider themselves too old. For whatever reason, they suffer alone, fantasizing about their attraction while married, or believing their time has passed.
There are very young trans attracted men who grew up knowing and owning their trans attraction. For them they see this as normal and live their lives as though nothing is different about them or their attraction. They are blessed.
There are married trans attracted men who can’t leave their cis-wives for various reasons. They put duty and expectation ahead of personal happiness and satisfaction. A noble, if painful, choice. These guys may or may not seek similar temporary desire-gratification of the struggler, getting just enough satisfaction to keep the urge at bay so they can go on with their normal life.
In her excellent Medium article, Detransition, Desistance, and Disinformation: A Guide for Understanding Transgender Children Debates, Julia Serano describes how there “are many transsexual trajectories” in “the messy backdrop of trans realities”. The same is true for the trans attracted trajectories. For each man’s path is unique. Each one has to walk his own self-discovery, sometimes leaving collateral damage in his wake, including broken families and broken hearts.
This isn’t a sob story, but an attempt to recognize a misunderstood/mischaracterized component of the trans community narrative. If you’re a guy reading this, you’re being increasingly seen. If you’re a transgender woman reading this, it would do an immense amount of good to sit down with one of these men and have an honest, open non judgmental conversation.
The life you change could be your own.