Once you start taking hormones, Bob the Builder is unleashed on your blueprint and several things start changing dramatically. Although the length of time it takes for testosterone to have an effect varies from individual to individual, changes include: lowering voice, male hair growth pattern, redistribution of body fat, increased musculature, genital changes.
Despite my efforts to remain completely cool about this, I´ve got to say the results that some transmen have achieved, never fail to put a big smirk on my face. Could you tell the difference between a cisguy (Marlon Brando, left) and a transguy (Aydian Dowling, right)? Although admittedly, Aydian only achieved that type of body through a lot of hard work, it gives me hope for the future.
Once a year or more on testosterone, a trans guy is electable for top surgery. I believe in some cases, as in the case of those who feel more gender neutral, fluid, or non binary, top surgery can be had without going on testosterone altogether, which is an equally valid choice. In my case however I would opt for both, and after waiting a certain amount of time, I could choose between several types of top surgery techniques.
Bottom surgery, also called SRS (Sex Reassignment Surgery) typically is the last stage of the physical transition. A transguy who has been on testosterone for years will have a certain amount of growth in the genital area and can choose to either undergo metoidioplasty or phalloplasty. In the first case, there will be no new additions to downstairs growth, just an adaptation, sometimes done in stages.
In case of a meta, as it is also called, the new genitalia will function like any other normal penis, but be smaller in size. Phalloplasty on the other hand entails the construction of a phallus by migration of skin from either the arms or the legs. In the case of phalloplasty a patient normally needs further adaptation (like an erectile prosthesis) in order to function normally.
In the next and last part of my explanation, I´ll talk a bit about the emotional side of transitioning (insofar as I can do so without actually being on testosterone myself), and non-traditional ways of transitioning.