I’m fascinated by the issue of hormones in transland.

Many transpeople locate great power in hormone, believing that the changes they go through are all due to hormones, that hormones are what make the difference between the sexes.

There is some truth to this, of course. We can see the physical differences.  But as part of his treatment for prostate cancer my father was chemically neutered well over a decade ago, and I can see the effects of testosterone removal in his body.  Yet he hasn’t turned into a woman in any way that I can tell.

I have always questioned how much hormones make changes and how much the consumption of hormones allow us leave to expose what we have hidden in the past.

The New York Times has two stories that touch on this issue.

One notes that people who believe they are getting a more expensive drug rate it more effective than people who believe they are getting a cheaper drug, even when both are placebos.

The other notes that students who believe they are drinking alcohol acted as social expectations & allowances entitled them to, even when there is no alcohol.

Chemicals change us, no doubt.  But they also hold the power of what we believe they can & will do to us.

If we believe that changing our hormones will change who we are, then consuming what we believe to be hormones will entitle and empower us to change our choices.

I know this is the thinking of a “transnatural” person who has seen great changes in her life with no extrinsic changes in her body, but my experience does prove that change in belief & presentation does not require extrinsic changes, though those internal changes may be assisted and facilitated by extrinsic change.

What we believe we believe.

And researchers keep proving the power of that belief in shaping our response to our world.

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