Transmen (Sunday, August 12th, 2012)

Recently published, this is one of very few guides for the target audience, defined as

.. anyone who was labelled female at birth but who identifies as male.

(Inside front cover, in small black on blue writing)

There is lots to applaud about this guide, from that it exists to much of the content. The idea that sexuality can change over time is in there, for example, and there's lots on talking to partners (albeit sometimes implying that you have one and only one – it'd be better to say 'a partner' or 'any partner' rather than 'your partner', for example – but sometimes explicitly considering you might have more).

Plus for once, I cannot complain that the b-word is only used one time (in relation to a description of the LGBT domestic violence charity, Broken Rainbow UK) because that's the only place the word 'gay' appears too.

So it's talking about risky behaviour rather than sexuality or sexual identity, hooray!

Ah, but what behaviours?

The good news is that it explicitly mentions vaginal sex several times, usually in the context of "vaginal and anal sex". The tip of taking the inner ring out of Femidoms makes a welcome appearance (it's not in the THT website's main sexual health pages). There's even a section on contraception and pregnancy at the back.

Just about the only line in the entire booklet to cause me to raise an eyebrow is:

To reduce the risk from oral sex, avoid letting a partner
ejaculate in your mouth.

Does that include female partners?

I'm not aware of any research about the STI transmission risks of getting female ejaculate into the mouth (and I suspect that it's somewhere between nil and minuscule) but it would be nice to be clearer.

So overall, quite possibly the best booklet from THT for ages. Well done.

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