Transformation, Imagination, ExpectationMy great thanks and applause to cosmiclantorn for sharing such a wonderful, thorough story. It is that story which inspired me to contribute, because I have found many similarities and, I think, important differences in my own story. Still finding my way, making connections, hoping to help others make connections for themselves, too.
Like many who have posted, I too was intrigued by animal transformation from a very young age. I was an Animorphs book-flipper as early as second grade; at that time I also hunted around for Goosebumps books that had anything to do with transformation (you can imagine my excitement when I discovered the Werewolf of Fever Swamp). I checked TV guide to see if Disney's The Thirteenth Year was ever playing; waited on the edge of my seat in the hopes that the next Aladdin episode would be either the one where Jasmine becomes a snake or Aladdin a shark; probed the movie channels for re-runs of Teen Wolf, or anything on Sci-Fi (back when it was spelled properly) even remotely related to TF. Jumanji long-term monkey tf? Awesome. Manimal FTW. When I saw Rick Baker's work on the transformation scene in AAWiL, I just about lost it: brilliant, fun, striking. To become a wolf--god, was it even possible?--there could be nothing more incredible.
Around 12-13 I searched the internet, tentatively at first. Wasn't as much in the way of TF art at that time; it seemed to be blossoming right around the turn of the century (or perhaps I wasn't looking hard enough!). In any case, I loved the TF images, and the more I explored, the more I fell in love with the idea of transformation into an animal. But this was no fetish, not yet; at the time there was nothing sexual about my interest whatsoever. I even avoided "mature" images because I was (of course!) too young. And I was not one to break rules.
No, in fact, the two things I feared most growing up: getting in trouble, doing poorly in school. I have been blessed with an extremely loving and patient family, and what I love about them most of all is that they encourage you to be who you are. But even in that environment, I felt wrong about my interest in transformation. I felt the need to hide it--I mean intensely. We're not just talking erasing my web history (like my parents would ever check anyway)....I mean, if I was so much as watching a werewolf-related TV show and my mom got home, I would change the channel TWICE so that, if she happened to decide to plop down and watch TV then and there, and then happened to press "recall," she wouldn't notice that I had been watching a channel on which a werewolf-related show happened to be running. In other words: mania. A mini-hysteria about never being caught...and that mania only deepened the more I submerged into the culture. I felt, at times, smug and proud of my interest--other times, I thought it was messed up, weird, and certainly nothing that would ever be accepted in my family...that is, in a family with an already extremely high tolerance and love for letting you be yourself. As an extremely nervous, stressed-out student all through high school (and most of college), TF became this breath of fresh air, an indulgence for my imagination, a source of levity in which I could envision my mind turning hazy, my body changing, turning into a new form, a new life, one free of the silly worries and expectations that humans have to suffer through. I guess it was largely about "escapism," but that's not exactly what it felt like...I didn't want to "escape," and come back, I wanted to FEEL the transformation, see it in my own mirror, brush my own sandpapery paws together. But then I'd wake up and have to go to school.
I didn't ********** until I was 20. I didn't "want" to...And I put that in quotes because I imagine that an unconscious part of myself very much did want to (given that I enjoy it now), but it was so deeply repressed by the conscious mind that I never even tried--never even thought of trying--till halfway through college. At first, I had barely any idea what the hell had just happened....I mean, it felt incredibly ******* awesome, sure, but...huh?! And for the first couple weeks, I experimented with ************ without any link to TF whatsoever. But when TF entered the picture--transfur, arania, youtube werewolf tfs--the two clicked. TF bolstered the pleasure of the ************ because it let me watch and imagine while pleasing myself.
For a long time I got pretty upset about sexually enjoying TF....I felt like I was "taking advantage" of what had merely been an innocent, fun, captivating interest that was unique to me. I felt like I was somehow dirtying my love of TF by enjoying it sexually...It took me a long time to realize that that sexual enjoyment was simply another ex
Which, admittedly, creates problems. I declared myself asexual for a long time because, it's true, I have little to no physical attraction to humans of any sort, male or female. Anthropomorphic with animal features (eg Alex's mom in Madagascar 2)? Hawt. (I know, that's more of a furry thing, but I do like furry culture....I just happen to like TF more. By a lot.) Late in college I experimented with my sexuality somewhat. I've been in sexual relationships with both men and women (currently lean more towards straight). I've done bondage, BDSM, RP....I can hogtie you, put you in a full body bind, pin you against a wall and make you very, very happy. I've tried lots of different things, but I've always come back to animal TF: that's what makes me excited in so many various ways. And it's distressing that my lifelong dream, my "soul-mate" (at least at this point in life), seems to be a physical impossibility (however, I NEVER give up hope that I might one day transform!). Distressing, but then again, I am happy with who I am right now....I like that I like transformation, and I like the possibility that I could one day "transform" with someone I love.
What I guess I mean is...I, too, was very sexually repressed when I young. I felt the weight of expectations at all times and never explored my sexuality. But when I think about TF, it feels wonderful. It feels like me. And that doesn't seem wrong at all. Here's my thought: TF is all about changing, becoming something different, learning more about a deeper part of yourself. I, too, feel like I'm constantly changing: trying new things, new sexual experiences, traveling, whatever! And those things are constantly changing me, too. In other words, the way I live parallels the whole idea of TF: ready and willing to accept the adventure of change. Maybe one day I'll settle down with a human; right now, though, I'm enjoying the exploration, the transformation, and it doesn't feel at all like repression to me...on the contrary, it is freedom.
A big wolfy howwwwwllll!!! to all those TF fans out there....happy to be among you, and encouraging you to be yourself, however stable or changing, human or animal, that may be!