TIF classification project - open to feedback
While we classify TIMs as AGP and HSTS, I've noticed that there is a lack of consistent TIF typology. So, I went ahead and made one.
My sources: almost a year of undercover activity on trans forums (3 different characters, 2 TIFs, 1 TIM), 5 real life run-ins with TIFs (all types), a talk with a female victim of a predatory one, a predatory TIF in my extended family.
Warning: upsetting issues ahead - rape, fetishism, violence, mental illness
Motivated by societal distress caused by being female. Lesbians, tomboys and/or rape victims. The most known and arguably common type. Most of detransitioners come from this group.
Sexuality: Either homosexual (“straight” for them) or so obliterated by trauma so as to be completely non-existent (“asexual”). If not asexual, then either masochists/submissive, or “vanilla” (not perverted).
ID: Most are “men”, but there is a significant minority of those who ID as sexless (agender, nonbinary, neutrois etc.). They don’t really want to become men, as much as they want to stop being women.
Detransition rate: Very high. Feminism empowers non-conformists, lesbians, and victims, and so serves as a safe place for them to go. Furthermore, the general society views “I just wanted to be accepted” as an acceptable feminine motivation. The one exception are those who are 10+ years into it, didn’t get any nasty side effects from procedures, and have a partner and a job. They’ll stick with the devil they know.
Common mental disorders: Anorexia, dysmorphia, anxiety, depression, autism.
Interests: Vary a lot. Plenty of quiet, bookish types. Often some sort of stereotypically masculine sport. Not that many of them are otherkin or furries, but plenty are therians. They often shun stereotypically feminine hobbies they genuinely enjoy and push themselves into things men in their lives do.
Transition: Baggy clothes, short haircuts, binding breasts. Normal male or unisex names. Hormones. Mastectomy and hysterectomy are common, but phallus is usually not constructed. They mumble something about “not good enough yet”, but it’s actually because they want to desex themselves and find penises disgusting.
“Goals”: Either a normal, respectable dude, or a sexless being.
How to approach: Gentle conversation is the best. Affirm that loving women is okay, that any “masculine” interest is cool, that she didn’t deserve her assault/trauma – without calling her a woman outright. She has a lot of baggage attached to that word. Slowly build a friendly relationship, gently bring up side effects of hormones and surgeries. Once you see doubt, direct her towards detransitioners.
Motivated by desire to be special and shallow aesthetics of the gender-special movement. Often there is a mild autoandrophilic element (caused by too much yaoi).
Sexuality: Straight (or “uwu gay boys”). Some of them identify as bisexual, but it’s hard to determine if it’s genuine bisexuality or attraction to manly men and she/her “femboys”. Fetish-wise, into a lot of weird stuff. Furries, tentacles, latex, transformation, this sort of thing, often as a switch (both the doer and the target of the act). Sometimes come across as pedophilic, due to inappropriate conduct around children, sharing NSFW information with them etc. This, however, usually comes from the “sex positive” ideology, rather than genuine pedophilia (this is more of a “predatory” thing).
ID: Actually, a minority of them are “men” (I’d say 20-30%). A lot of them call themselves half man, half woman (bigender, genderqueer etc.) or “genderfluid”.
Detransition rate: Complicated. Young and “out” only on tumblr? Will go away. 25+ and a head of a LGBTQRSTUVWXYZ organisation? Not likely to back down. With every IRL thing done in the trans direction (coming out, hormones, surgeries, legal stuff, joining organisations), the chance of detransition drops significantly.
Common mental disorders: Narcissism, borderline, schizotypal, maladaptive daydreaming, sometimes a mild form of psychosis.
Interests: Cartoons, especially anime, drawing, making jewellery (with various obscure flags, to sell on Etsy). Lots of them are otherkin – the more special, the better (fairies, dragons, deities etc.), furries are also well-represented among them. Some of them are self-proclaimed witches or “spiritual” types. Overall they have a very poor relationship with reality.
Transition: Loads of flag patches, colourful hair, either binding without packing or packing without binding (uwu androgyny). Batshit insane names, often neopronouns. Further transition varies, from all the way to “my body is a boy’s body because it belongs to a boy!” Often get tattoos and piercings.
“Goals”: Feminine bottom gay boy, handsome-but-still-pretty top yaoi boy with a hairless body of a Greek god, or a sparkling hermaphroditic alien who is adored by everyone.
How to approach: Don’t feed her delusions. Don’t give her undue attention. Allow her to talk about her gender fluctuations and kin memories, and just go “mhm”. No “omg, you’re so valid”, but no “you’re fucking crazy”. Include her in women-only spaces and events, keep her away from queer spaces/websites. Practical activities, like horse riding or camping are great ideas. The younger she is, the easier for her it will be to shake it off.
A complicated, mostly invisible type. Born with psychopathic traits, which causes them to not socialise as female fully (as they lack empathy, enjoy hurting others etc.) and therefore relate to male culture strongly.
Sexuality: Orientation wise, all over the scale, mostly in the middle. Usually call themselves bisexual or “pansexual”, very often “aromantic” (incapable of feeling love). Sadist/dominant, with fetishes like rape, impregnation (with them in the male role), mutilation, cannibalism etc. Often pedos or into bestiality. Two huge elements in this type’s sexuality are what I’d call autohybristophilia – attraction to the image of oneself as a male killer/rapist – and corruption fetish – the fantasy of destroying someone, body and mind, and “remaking” them - they enjoy the thrill of exposing children to fetishes or “cracking eggs”.
ID: Almost all “men”.
Detransition rate: Zero, or at least very low. I've never met one that had any regret or doubt, and I've never met a detransitioner who used to be this type. They seem to more self-assured that the other types, have less interest in fitting in, women usually find their company repulsive or dangerous, mainstream society doesn't find "it got me off" a feminine motivation...
Common mental disorders: Psychopathy, various paraphilias.
Interests: There is always some strong interest in the grotesque/macabre, horror, gore etc. They like people getting hurt, and watch horror films or even real-life gore like most dudes watch porn. Some are otherkin (usually something vague like “monsterkin”, in stark contrast to kweer ones, who have entire characters), but they are less active in the community. Other interests vary wildly, they usually don’t obsessively hide “girly” interests like self-hating ones do.
Transition: Normal male fashion, packing (stuffing underwear) with or without binding. Names might be normal or batshit insane, they are usually less anal about pronouns, whatever they use. Go all the way – hormones, all surgeries etc. Very common of them to take up weightlifting and get tattoos. A lot of them use special huge strapons that transfer sensation or even ejaculate (anatomic autoandrophilia) instead of or before surgery.
“Goals”: The potential to hurt outweights aesthetics. Typically the “ideal body” has huge muscles and a big penis, but it might be very ugly or even nonhuman. Worth mentioning, this is not the same as a revenge fantasy some women (including self-hating TIFs) indulge in. That is “I don’t have power, but if I could hurt the people who hurt me, I’d have power at least over that situation”, this is “I like hurting people, and if I had power, I’d hurt them even more/without consequences”.
How to approach: sigh Tell me if you know. I'd argue it's better not to aproach them - you'll get laughed at at best, pulled into a weird mind game at worst. Stay away from them in real life. Out of 3 I met face to face, two were sex offenders and one beat me up. If one is your child - if she's really young, you might teach her empathy and emotional regulation, otherwise you're probably out of luck.
It's possible for one to be two or all types at once. It's possible for one to pretend to be the other for various reasons. It's possible for a non-trans woman to have some traits of one or more type (if she's at risk of transition and/or a TRA ally).
There are two additional factors, both for TIMs and TIFs, - DSD/intersex conditions (which can cause weird socialisation) and actual delusions ("I'm a man on an astral plane" or "I have ovaries, but my doctor can't find them").
Hey, cynical lurkers - none of those are "true trans".
I'm open to constructive criticism.
I can talk about my experiences if you're curious.