cannedrabbit (cannedrabbit) wrote in transparents,

Getting Pregnant While a Spouse is Transitioning

Hello! I'm really happy to have found this community as my wife and I are considering the possibility of getting pregnant for a third and final time as she begins hrt in November. I was wondering if anyone else here had any experiences being pregnant while their spouse transitioned. Also, how long is the window of opportunity open, on average, once she starts on hormones? Are there any risks involved in getting pregnant while a partner is on hormones? Thanks so much for any advice!
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I don't have first-hand knowledge of being the partner, but I did get pregnant early in my own transition. She was post-transition by then, so it was me dealing with both transition and pregnancy. (Not mutually exclusive but it didn't help in the passing department)

Personally, I think it's a whole lot easier on kids if the parent was mid- or post-transition from the child's earliest years. Not that I'm trying to hide my status from my son or anything, just that stability is a good thing, and watching a parent transition can be very unsettling for a small child. (I am absolutely NOT condemning any parents who choose to transition; stability is important but a parent's emotional needs are also very important).

It's really hard to say how long the window is open. Medical literature used to say six months until permanent sterility, but that's turning out to be incorrect. I ended up pregnant because my wife and I were assuming that it couldn't happen - she was nearly a decade on hormones and blockers, and I was about six months into testosterone treatments.

In terms of other advice - I don't know your sexual history, of course, but prior to this, you and your wife appeared as a straight couple, correct? Get ready to lose your straight privilege; that would happen anyway but IME throwing a pregnancy/new baby into the mix makes people a lot bolder in expressing negative opinions, because they feel they have to "protect" the child. People also ask really insensitive and invasive questions. I've been told it's a sin that I didn't give my son up for adoption. I was told, repeatedly, that I should break up with my wife and "go back" to the kid's father because that would be "healthier". My wife was cornered once by a co-worker of mine who told her that if I was going to cheat, I didn't deserve to be in a relationship, and that I could have at least respected her enough to end the pregnancy instead of parading around with "someone else's baby bump". We've been asked countless times whose baby he was, even when it was blindingly obvious that my wife and I were together and we were both parenting him (as in, even if they WEREN'T misgendering me as a woman, and we really were a lesbian couple, it was still an inappropriate question)

Also, check the laws about birth certificates in your state. We ran into problems with my son's BC because the staff member in charge of filing the paperwork didn't want to put my wife's obviously feminine name down as the father. Some states assume the husband is the father and file it that way unless the mother says otherwise; others leave it blank if you don't tell them specifically.We ended up stuck an extra day at the hospital because the staff member first pretended not to understand why a woman's name was in the father space and then argued with us about it for so long that the processing office had closed for the night. (I say pretended because I was being followed by cameras the whole time for a documentary and was very obviously gender variant - there's no way in hell that I wasn't the topic of choice for water cooler gossip).
We already have two kids together, aged 2.5 and 5, and they seem to be "dealing" just fine. They've been quick to pick up on calling my wife "Mama" and using proper pronouns. They're also quick to correct outside people who ask about "Daddy". In fact, my 5 y.o. actually seems to be closer to my wife now that she's presenting as female. I attribute this to the fact that she is so much happier and it's been easier for my daughter to get close to her.

And, yes, previously my wife and I appeared as a straight couple, though we are also an interracial couple so that sometimes got us some looks. And though she doesn't necessarily "pass" as she hasn't started on any kind of HRT, she is def. in girl mode all the time and when we go out as a family we get some looks and some rudeness. Nothing that vocal yet though! I figured there would be some issue with being a pregnant lesbian couple, but thanks for bringing that up. I'll be sure to steel myself for not only the looks but the noise too.

Thanks also for the tip about the birth certificates. While we most likely will be doing a home birth (I gave birth to my 2.5 y.o. at home and it was a great experience), it's good to have a heads up about possible issues we may encounter when we go to the proper government offices.

Thanks again! :D


September 23 2013, 12:34:52 UTC 3 years ago Edited:  September 23 2013, 12:46:04 UTC

I hope you have better experiences with the public than I did, about being a pregnant lesbian couple. I think we got it more bluntly because it was terrible timing and people could tell we hadn't planned for it - if you're a cis lesbian couple, you either plan and plan and plan before the pregnancy occurs (nobody has an "oops" IVF or sperm donor), or the pregnant half of the couple is/was sleeping with somebody else, whether it's infidelity or an open/multiple partner relationship. (When I first found out I was pregnant, the doc tried to send my wife out of the room to discuss it - I was nearly 7 months and he thought I'd known and was lying about it. Probably the first time a couple has busted out laughing in his office when presented with "obvious" evidence that one of them was cheating. "You must have been involved with a man..." "No, I really haven't been." "Well, clearly, you did something with a man." "No, I've only slept with her." "That's impossible." I let that go on for a couple rounds before I put him out of his misery. XD )

Since you two already have kids together and are, I'm assuming, older than I was (22 when he was born), people might not be so quick to assume. I hope.

Oh, also, you asked about whether it was safe for your partner to be on hormones, and would that affect the baby. Estrogen treatment and blockers affect sperm production, motility, etc., but don't have an effect on the actual DNA of the cells. Just take care not to expose yourself to her medications (I have no idea if E comes in creams or gels, but I know T does and can get passed to a partner through skin contact before the medication is absorbed.)
I have a whole long comment somewhere, but it got marked as spam. Weird.
I was in a little different situation, we were attempting to get pregnant after hormone therapy. Speaking to my Gyn she said that after stopping hormone therapy we should wait 3 months to consider it our "start time" of when we began trying. Luckily we did get pregnant at that 3 month mark, which was awesome. I don't know the mark of exactly when sperm production would be too low, but I would guess a similar time frame for sperm to be effected by the hormones. As for the risks involved, I'm not quite sure is hormone effected sperm has any risks. Good luck to you!
Thanks so much!