“Autogynephilia” activists

Since the creation of the diagnosis “autogynephilia” in 1989, few people have pushed for its use as a term.

Most experts and lay people criticize the diagnosis “autogynephilia” because it is not scientific and not value-neutral. It is a diagnosis of a mental illness, a psychosexual pathology. Using value-neutral words is a key to good science. Many critics have proposed value-neutral terms and frameworks for what “autogynephilia” attempts to describe.

Below are the groups of people who have actively pushed for the disease model “autogynephilia” despite its pathologizing and biased meaning.

Academic ideologues

The loudest advocates are an activist minority of academics closely connected to the disease’s creator, Ray Blanchard.

“Autogynephilic transsexuals” (AGPs) and gender critical trans people

People who use “autogynephilic transsexual” as a self-identity often consider themselves “men trapped in men’s bodies.”

“Homosexual transsexuals” (HSTS)

In the case of many “autogynephilia” activists who are transgender, they believe the diagnosis applies to others, but not to them. These activists often identify as “homosexual transsexuals,” the more socially-desirable type in Blanchard’s two-type taxonomy. Some claim to be intersex. Some claim to be “transkids” who transitioned as minors and are primarily connected with the transkids.us hoax website. Many would be diagnosed as “autogynephilic” by Blanchard and his supporters.

The “ex-trans” movement

These are people who see “transgender” as a rigid binary instead of a spectrum. They once identified as transgender but now say they are not, and many agree with this taxonomy. Many are critical of transgender people, the media, or their healthcare providers, whom they often blame for their decision to transition:

  • Mark Angelo Cummings
  • Walt Heyer
  • Hacsi Horvath
  • Rene Jax
  • Joseph Muchlinski
  • Joel Nowak
  • James Shupe

Trans-attracted people

Some trans-attracted people engaged in “autogynephilia” activism wish to distance their own attractions from trans women they consider “autogynephiles.” In some cases, it’s because they see “AGP” trans women as a threat to their “heterosexual” identity. They often brag about how “heterosexual” they are and how the “HSTS” trans women they desire are extremely feminine and only interested in masculine “heterosexual” men like them. They are among the most obsessed with Blanchard’s taxonomy, because it’s so important to their own sexual identities.

  • J. Michael Bailey
  • Rod Fleming
  • Seth Roberts

Non-transitioning “autogynephiles”

Many people who have erotic or autoerotic interest in feminization do not plan to make a public or full-time gender transition. Most use fake names or are not out. Some identify as cisgender. Because they are not public about their identities, it’s difficult to generalize about this group, but they seem demographically connected to trans-attracted people and often seem to have a fixation with categorization common among those on the autism spectrum.

A few have self-identified as “autogynephilic” or promote the term:

  • “J.A. Brown”
  • James D. Conners
  • “Felix Conrad”
  • Jasper Gregory
  • “Mark Taylor Saotome-Westlake”

People with their own definitions

In some cases, trans activists believe “autogynephilia” means something different than its clinical definition as a sex-fueled mental illness. According to its creator, it means “a man’s paraphilic tendency to be sexually aroused by the thought or image of himself as a woman.” People who have created their own idiosyncratic definitions were involved in a banned Yahoo group and include:

Biased people

  • Social and religious conservatives
  • “Gender critical” people
  • Trans-exclusionary radical feminists
  • “Ex-transgender” people
  • Trans-suspicious and trans-unaware people
    • healthcare providers
    • academics
    • journalists
    • lawmakers
  • Neurodiverse people fixated on categorizing things
  • Trolls and members of toxic online communities