Coming out as a pregnant guy

Before starting this pregnancy journey I gave a lot of thought to coming out.  What would it be like to come out as a pregnant man?  Family and friends are one thing, but I think some of my biggest fears and challenges will be at work and in general public.

I’ve read some other stories about guys who traveled this path before.  Many of them say most people in public perceived them to be just a chubby guy getting fatter.  I may be able to avoid stares and questions for a while since I have a larger frame.  I’ve also noticed that many folks work from home or work independently, so coming out in the workplace doesn’t always apply.

However, I ride everyday in a 7 person carpool.  I work with large teams of people.  I also work with a lot of patients in a research capacity.  This is my reality and I know that I am going to have to discuss the pregnancy and come out eventually.

I thought about  it for a while before I told anyone about my desire to be a birthdad and physically carry a baby, our baby.  Before I spoke the words (that were in my heart) I wanted to be sure I was strong enough to do it.  When it finally did come up back in December 2011, my wife and I were having a serious conversation about the various ways we could bring children into our lives.  I finally said something like, “What if I carry the baby..?”  I was fearful she would be shocked, but my ever-practical wife C responded something like, “It makes sense….you have the working parts and it is cheaper than some of the other options!”

When she said that she would be on board I was exhilarated.  My heart was racing and full of joy.  It just blows my mind sometimes how I thought so little of the life I dreamed of could even be possible because of my identities.  The more love we share and the more strength I find, I see that we can do all of it…our way.  To experience pregnancy and birth has always been an interest of mine, although I think I pushed this away.  Even genderqueer trannies can let gender norms get the best of them!

There was something magical and safe about keeping it between us.  I hate to say it, but I had some fears that even our closest queer friends would think I was nuts!   So far we’ve told many of our queer friends, who were overwhelmingly supportive and very excited for us.  C has also told a few close friends at work.  We feel so blessed to have all these awesome people in our lives.

It’s good to know that whatever challenges I face navigating the world as a pregnant dude, I will have lots of support from C and our supportive circle of friends and family.

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10 thoughts on “Coming out as a pregnant guy

  1. Pregnant women already get enough attention as it is. I have heard from numerous women that suddenly, because you are pregnant, the world has a right to comment on your body, your life, and your choices. Parenting advice is offered, advice about labor and delivery, comments on how big or small you are, etc. Suddenly you have a big spotlight on you in public. Random strangers feel like making conversation with you. Everyone has questions about your pregnancy, etc. As if people haven’t ever known a pregnant woman before.
    Now, to be a pregnant guy, that could turn some heads. I think you’re right, most people will not assume, “oh, that guy must be pregnant.” Like you said, their first thought will be that you have quite the pot belly, and maybe second though, does that guy have a 30lb tumor like that show I saw on TLC?
    Coming out as PREGNANT also means you have to come out as trans, and coming out as trans (as opposed to being “stealth”) would be sensitive enough already I bet. Just explaining the transgender thing can be hard enough for some people (and bigoted idiots) to grasp. So it’s like, revealing yourself as transgender then revealing yourself as pregnant and then people going “huh?” and then you have to do lots of explaining………….. ugh that sounds so overwhelming.
    I hope that the people you tell accept you with warmth, and that the people you don’t tell just don’t care. And that 9 months flies by quickly so you can have your happy Falco and be done with the pregnancy thing for now… (although you might be enjoying it). 🙂

      • Well it’s true! Believe me, I am totally not even in the frame of mind of thinking about what life is going to be like when people say “So, what’s (insert hypothetical child’s name) ‘s dad’s name?” and I think… shit… this kid doesn’t have a DAD per say but not really another MOM in my eyes. AWKWARD moments that make me want to cringe. Why this journey is hard. UGH

  2. Every single day, you lead your life with such dignity and bravery in the face of discrimination, bigotry and adversity, all the while caring for others in your sweet, natural way. I am so proud and lucky to be your wife and future mother of our child.

  3. I wish you all the luck in this! Though queer and trans people have more experience with disclosure than many folks, that doesn’t make it any easier to share something intensely personal and important… especially not knowing how others will react.

    When it comes to responses from strangers, the pregnant men I know have either been invalidated as pregnant or as male. Even men who pass 100% in daily life will be read as female (or just not pregnant) even when it would seem totally clear that they were both pregnant and male– simply because people cannot, and will not, register the possibility of a pregnant man.

    It’s funny how assumptions work. And lovely when we can challenge our own.

    • Yes, very true. I do expect people to invalidate one thing or the other, because in their mind, or their experience thus far, you can’t be both. I think both would feel pretty crappy, being invalidated as male or pregnant.

      • For sure. I’m female-identified, but still worry about how my own relationship to my gender and gender presentation will be invalidated when something that is read as so female/womanly as pregnancy comes into the mix!

        It would be so much easier if people knew how to distinguish between gender and sex– and didn’t consider Thomas Beatie the only pregnant man of all time. Ever.

  4. Oh, yes, in fact his name has yet to be spoken on this blog. You win! I’ll take a shot of….milk or something. But really, I have quite a few feelings and thoughts about him. Someday soon I’ll have to write a post about that.

  5. I don’t envy your position at all. It’s been weird enough going from “mom” in so many peoples’ eyes to “dude.” You just have to have faith that you’re doing what’s right for you and your family and to hell with what anyone else thinks. There will be rough days ahead, but there will also be a lot of magic waiting at the end.

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