FTM’s in their own words: How to Behave Male
July 20, 2011
“OK so behaving male seems to be an issue for me. I know I FEEL male inside, but sometimes I act way to girly and I need to work on that. I guess part of the reason is my family expects me to be a girl so I do all I can to make them happy so I haven’t really had the chance to practice. How do I behave male? I’ve tried studying my father’s behaviour and sometimes I have rare cases when I act a little male myself. Other than that I haven’t got any idea on how to act like a boy. Any suggestions? Advice?”
“Well, the most important part, don’t swing your hips. Arm gestures are mostly unimportant, but if you want to work on that, just don’t sway them in a flamboyant fashion, and keep them in a consistent position and direction with the sides of your hands facing forward and you’ll be fine.”
“I think I really screwed myself up when I was living as a girl, because I never felt like I lived up to being a girl, and I remember as a teen that I would watch the behavior and manners of girls my age and would try to imitate it in hopes of living up to more of a girl. And I did that for so long that I had made these manners a habit. And now I feel like I need to undo that so I begin to really be myself. But habits are hard to unlearn. And it’s harder for me to “not act like a girl” than it is for me to “act like a guy.” because it’s easier for me to replace one habit with another, than it is for me to just remove any habit entirely.”
“Just watch male a lot, study how they do things.
I notice that girls move their hands around a lot more when they talk than males do.
For posture, I notice that guys either stand straight up and down, or their shoulders hunch over a little. Now girls seem to have a posture where their butt sticks out a little and their shoulders are pulled a little and their chest comes out and up. Like for girls, the small of their back is pulled in more, giving their spine a noticeable curve. Whereas on guys, it seems like their spine just goes straight up and down.”
“How to walk like a guy 101:
When you look at other people make sure you’re only looking at either a woman’s tits or her ba-donka-donk if she has one.
Say hi, or mumble something, then quickly walk by.
Take long strides.
Clomp a little with all of your foot, and by all means never walk just on your toes or ball of your foot.
Skip stairs when you’re going up, taking two or three at a time.
Wear larger shoes than you really need.
Wear larger pants than you really need.
There you go. Class is over. lmao !!!”
“Some general tips:
Scratch your “package” often. (We guys call it “adjusting”.)
Spit to the side (make sure it doesn’t dangle from your lips though…use force to expel that expectorate!)
Do NOT use “swishy” hand movements when you talk. For that matter, like, don’t use, like, “like”, when you, like, talk, and stuff. Use the “F” word liberally. Nouns, verbs, adjectives, whatever…it covers everything.
Learn the difference between a poundy thing (iirc, it’s called a “hammer”) and the turnie-thing (screwdriver? Or is that a drink?)”
“Something that might help, is to deliberately derail from gender equality in research, and look at masculine nature, habits, and biology. After that, work back into yourself and adjust accordingly.
For example, while females seem to have more lower body weight, males have more upper body weight from upper body development. Because of that, males will lead more with their upper body in their movements, while females will roll their foot movement into position, and lead more with their lower body. Also, men have a mindset to be very -blunt-. Acting and talking more statistical may end up being seen as more masculine. Being more to the point and less ‘graceful’ through things might also help things, as men interface more with the situation than their emotions. This is probably where the gender correlation comes from in the myer’s-briggs (it was either Thinking and Intuition, or Feeling and Sensing. I think it was the first pair, but the pair I’m referencing has mostly males on one side, and mostly females on the other.)”
“My biggest advice is never be the passive one.”
“Only thing I would say, is don’t cross one leg over the other when you sit down anywhere. It just ain’t something a guy can do with any degree of comfort. Or if you do, make the leg cross at right angles, to provide… breathing room, as it were.”
“the head nod. I’ve been doing that since I was pre-trans-coming-out uhhrr type deal but I never realized it until girlfriends I’ve had got really annoyed since I would do it to them every time we’d meet without thinking about it. I guess it’s always been an instinct although I do it to women too still. Which I probably should stop hahah.”
“I will act different, like more douchey because most men seem to do that amongst other men.
And yes, learn tools if you can. I remember my dad taught me about tools when I was a little kid because I bugged him to but most dads don’t normally do that with us when we were kids. Even then that was so long ago and just the basics. I’ve had guys laugh at me because I said I needed a screwdriver for something and they asked what head it needed and I didn’t know but I didn’t think to look (duhh right). And remember with screws and nuts it’s lefty loosey and righty tighty.”
“The main thing is stand your ground, because there may be guys testing you to see if you’ll stand up for who you are and what you believe in.”
“Really, the main thing is looking male – once this happens, your behaviour will be seen as “male behaviour” because it is coming from someone who looks male. Even if it isn’t stereotypical. You could be the butchest woman alive, and people would still see it as “female behaviour” to some degree. It’s just an unfortunate flaw in human thought.”
“I think you’ll find your authentic masculinity is whatever’s left when you strip away your learned feminine behaviours.”
“When we walk we have to offset the sway somewhere in order to not fall over. Women use their hips, men use their shoulders. So if you can learn to keep your hips motionless, you’ll be forced to sway your shoulders… or you’ll fall on your face. That’s how I learned anyway. You also want to widen your stance, women brush their thighs together as they walk, because they keep their feet only a couple of inches apart, men tend to keep their feet rather further apart (don’t exaggerate this unless you want to look like a cowboy). Hit the ground a little harder with your feet – coming down on your heel rather than your toe. Men tend to lead with their chest/head rather than their legs/hips – like you are driving yourself, rather than pulling yourself forward. And finally, you want to keep your elbows away from your body (again don’t exaggerate unless you want to look cavemanish).
Sitting is another fun one. Basically it is all about taking up space. If you are going to cross your legs: cross your ankles with your legs stretched in front of you, or rest an ankle on your knee. Otherwise keep your knees and feet apart. Lean back in your chair rather than forwards or sitting up straight. If you can manage it so you are basically lying down in your chair, that’s perfect. Do not fold your hands in your lap, you can rest them on your knees, on the armrests of the chair or you can run them along the backs of the chairs beside you until their owners get pissed off. Note that all of this indicates superiority and ease – i.e. don’t do it if you are talking to your boss or teacher or something. Then you sit up straight and keep your legs together.
Don’t gesture while you talk. Or if you have to, gesture away from you rather than towards. Men also tend to gesture from their shoulders rather than their elbows. Lean forwards while talking and back while listening. Make less eye contact in general. Try to avoid moving your upper lip while talking, that should help in producing the flat mumbly monotone. Also avoid opening your mouth beyond the absolute bare minimum for speech. Do not smile at other blokes unless they said something funny, they may take it the wrong way. Going overboard on any of this stuff will take you right past guy and onto jerk, so careful.”
“Women tend to walk with their head and hips while guys tend to walk with their crotch. No, this does not mean walking around while doing the pelvic thrust. It just means they tend to have a lower stance, usually walk with more authority, and are confident.”
“Women tend to be less obtrusive, while men tend to take up more space. If you watch commuters on a bus, women tend to sit with their legs crossed and their arms drawn in, and men tend to sit with their legs apart and their arms out.
Observe, observe, observe. Go to the mall or a park, sit on a bench, and watch the male world go by. Take notes. Later at home, practice in front of a mirror. Try not to be too exaggerated in your movements. Once you’re comfortable with your movements, go out in public and try them. They should become second nature after a while.
Be sure, when observing, to observe a wide range of guys, of all races, shapes and sizes. If you’re tall and thin, feel free to pay closer attention to tall thin guys, but watch everyone. Otherwise, you’ll just be doing an impression of the one or two tall thin guys you saw. Get an average and go with that.”
“Handshakes: Make them firm, not like a dead fish. Lock your thumb into the other person’s hand, and look them in the eye. Don’t pump excessively.
Dealing with women: Be yourself, but be less social than you used to be. Women tend to gossip more than men, particularly when they’re by themselves. Even if you’re sitting there with them. Don’t let yourself get sucked in. This may sound sexist, but it’s easy to sort of feminise the way you talk when you’re in that situation. Caveat emptor.
Dealing with men: Again, be yourself. Be social, but be aware of the difference in tone. When men gossip (they don’t call it gossip, though, it’s “discussing”), there is often a sexual undertone and some raucous laughter. Feel free to join in, but beware of the intense one-upmanship that is often present in these situations. Be ready to take ’em all on. If you can win a one-upmanship match with all of the guys you’re with, you’ll probably be accepted into their circle immediately.”
“Watch how men walk and practice at home. Try to relax and do everything you were told not to when you were younger. Men are sloppy creatures so anything that is less than perfect will probably work … feel free to take up space – be purposeful and sure of yourself. On the other hand, avoid the primate walk – any man looks unattractive lurching down the street like an escaped extra from Planet of the Apes. All you want to do is pass and in many ways, less is more – anything less than walking like a woman will get you through. The best advice I can think of is not to try too hard.
Standing: Distribute your weight evenly on both feet – stand as if you are in front of a urinal – feet shoulder width apart (which is a lot less than people often assume) and stand tall. Don’t let your hips slide sideways, stand with your knees together or look as though you are trying to slip into the background. You don’t have to make a big statement, just look confident and sure of yourself.
Handshakes: Check where the other guy’s hand is (quickly – don’t stare at the hand) and grasp it firmly – you probably won’t win any strength competitions so just make it solid and firm. Lock your thumb into the other person’s hand and shake – no excessive evangelical preacher/ used car salesman pumping. Look the other person in the eye and stay calm – it will be over in a couple of seconds and after a while it feels completely natural. Avoid dead fish handshakes at all costs.
Speaking: Try to eliminate any upward inflections at the end of your sentences. Practice keeping your voice steady and almost to a monotone. Use a reasonable volume as men speak louder than women: if you speak too quietly people will see you as lacking confidence. Men interrupt more often so once you feel confident you can jump into conversations fairly readily. Then again, knowing what you know from your previous life it could be a good move to integrate both aspects and charm your audience with a mix of polite confidence and urbane sophistication (it’s worth a try at least).
Male conversation is a whole new world. Just sit back and observe… then get involved slowly as you begin to feel comfortable. Not all men join in a conversation and it is quite acceptable to “sit it out” without appearing rude or out of place. Banter is an arcane art – best learned by observation. Just take your time and relax – all too soon you will be talking bullshit with the best of them.
Sitting: Men take up as much space as they need to be comfortable. Cross your legs with one ankle on the knee of the other leg or cross one leg over the other at the knee. Feel free to sit with your legs apart but don’t be uncouth about it. Sitting with a degree of decorum is more important in suits and formal wear otherwise you will look uncomfortable in that particular standard of clothing.
Eye contact: Look directly at people, especially other men. No coy, shy or sideways looks – be upfront and confident, but not aggressive.”
“Be confident. If you don’t believe yourself, no one else will believe you.
If you are gay, flaunt it but in a masculine way. You can wear a male on male symbol or a pink triangle. Avoid plain rainbow pride symbols as it can make people think you are a lesbian. Same if you’re a bisexual-you can wear a male on male/female sign, but a plain bisexual flag or the ‘biangles’ may get you confused for a bi girl.
Wear clothing that will make you look taller. Pinstripes are good, as well as the color black. Go monochromatic if you are short, since having a shirt a different color than the pants splits the body and shortens it. Platform, industrial style boots will also make you look taller. You can also try shoes with lifters on the inside (or toilet paper if you’re cheap). Remember: the taller you look, the less likely people will think you are a girl.”
“Handshakes: make them firm, lock your thumb into the other persons hand. Look them in the eye. Don’t pump excessively. No dead fish handshakes.
Lighting matches on a matchbook: most men draw the match toward them.
Looking at your nails: curl your hand and lift your hand palm up.
Sitting: men take up space. Cross your legs either with one ankle on the knee of the other or at the knees. The latter is more appropriate in suits and formal attire.
Conversation: men interrupt more, jump in more readily.
Walking: develop a more male walk. Watch other men and imitate them.
Standing: most men tend to evenly distribute their weight when they stand and tend to stand as if they are in front of a urinal when in fact they are standing at a counter or at the ATM machine.”
[Quotes compiled from various FTM sites.]