Bobbi Renae Swan
Why consider Thailand for SRS? I’d like to clear the air a bit in my feelings about selecting Thailand for your SRS – and of course why I did choose to go there. First of all, I am not one to advocate that Thailand is THE very best place for this most important and life changing surgery. It is not! I have some very close friends that have found marvelous care both in the US and Canada.
They all rave highly about their selections and compliment their surgeons highly. But they all found they had higher costs, a more difficult time to schedule their surgery (some needing to schedule over a full year in advance and with a significant deposit) and in general spent less time either in residence or close proximity for post op recuperation. I can’t stress this high enough noting the recent case of an infection following surgery on the way home traveling. This was important to me as in my eleventh day following my surgery I developed a urinary infection. I was still living in the hotel section of the Bangkok Nursing Home where I still had my private room and telephone – but lacking full time nursing service – and I merely had to pick up the phone and receive immediate service.
I was rushed to the ER and given all the necessary tests and then transferred back to the nursing wing for two nights. I charged this additional service (about $660) to my credit card and was later reimbursed by my HMO as simple needed service away from home. My SRS companion, Robin, at about the same time had a skin allergy reaction and was able to do the same. Trust me, infections like urinary and skin allergy can and do occur at the very best hospital facilities worldwide. And many Thailand hospitals rank with the very best in the world. It is as much a commercial attraction for Thailand as their well-known tourist industry. This was a national progress initiative inaugurated over a decade ago. It pays in my experience and talking to others to remain in residence for at least three weeks so that care can be given – and overseen and monitored by your surgeon.
That criterion adds to the cost of your surgery and must be taken into consideration as well. So let’s face it, probably the most attractive thing about selecting Thailand is cost! It certainly was mine and I did have a lot of frequent flyer miles to let me afford business class travel for both my companion and me. Second, Robin and I scheduled our surgery at our select times and in the same day. Yes I was first in the morning, age before beauty, but the date was specifically the day we wanted and fitted our airline reservations perfectly. We were having lunch together one day and the spirit hit us so we picked a date to fit her very busy business schedule and into a holiday season. I made an email contact and within two days we had our schedule to work to. We needed that to get our travel and passport documents in order as well as our personal arrangements at home.
It also matched our HRT and RLT objectives to a “t”. My third selection was based on the experience of the surgeon. It gave me a lot confidence to know how many successful procedures my candidate had performed. There are more surgeons in Thailand that satisfy this than in a similar area. It’s even been said that Thailand is capital for SRS. I’ll not debate this but I found the preponderance of others believing this to be consistent. I’m in the aviation business and there is a saying that stays with me. “A pilot is faced with hours of sheer boredom followed by seconds of panic when an emergency strikes.” Nuff said if an emergency might occur during surgery. I’ve noticed a concern for such a condition by another in this group. Another aviation philosophy, “Practice makes perfect!” Fourth I had visited Thailand previously over the years and I wanted to go back and get my elephant ride. I did not get that and found my desire had diminished greatly after my surgery and adjusting to my circular rubber balloon in sitting. My cardio and a nurse he was dating took Robin and me for a most private dinner on the river for our last night there. He looked very handsome that night wearing his NYFD tee shirt and our nurse was as adorable as ever! I also wanted to find a surgeon who I felt confident with for reasons due to particular health requirements– heart consderations in my case. I hope that you notice that I am not suggesting that one Thai surgeon as THE very best.
That’s your choice and I do recommend that you consider all of the above including hospital and living conditions according to your pocketbook and comfort zones. My selection was Dr. Preecha for all of the criteria above and a personal recommendation of a local SRS post op of his, a friend here at home in Michigan. I have mentioned the Bangkok Nursing Home. I liked its location, availability of local services like the beauty parlor across the street where I could get my hair washed and styled for $2.00.
Best to all with hugs, Bobbi
Hi there in Bangkok! Here is a recent article that I just sent on to the TG Forum for their use as well as to several of my local doctors. You are free to use it in any manner that you may wish. Hope all is well with all of you! Bobbi Renae A Post Op SRS FAQ I often receive email inquiries from prospective MTF patients about to elect for SRS and associated procedures. I welcome these and on at least one web site I am listed as a mentor. I do my very best to answer these promptly and as fully as I am able. Here is a pretty typical one that I recently responded to. I copied this to a very prominent lady journalist friend who has been so supportive to me. She wrote back: “Bobbi – you should create a brochure with this info. LH ” Well, I’m hardly in the position to create a brochure but I am well aware of how Cindy has been tugging at my bra strap for a fresh article. Perhaps, Cindy, if you find this appropriate you have the best place to utilize it. I have deleted the source of this query for her protection. I also might add that it seems to be common that I rarely get a reply or even a “thank you,” Nevertheless, I will always do my best to respond to those who introduce themselves properly to me.
It’s a way that I hope that I can give a little something back. Subject: Re: SRS surgeon recommendation Hi, As promised it’s now Sunday afternoon and with the Marathon running in Athens the time is right for a better reply to your email. For beginners I think it might be best to scroll on down with your message and let me respond in place. I had my surgery along with textured silicon implants and trachea shaving two years ago. I am living very happily in society as a woman and have essentially ‘come out’ to all. I may have a few questions for you at the end also. So here goes……….. Subject: SRS surgeon recommendation Hi, I am a 29-year-old teacher from the USA. I am seeking guidance from post-op women willing to share their experience and thoughts about with their SRS surgeon. I’m seeking SRS in June 2005. I recently had breast implants; SRS is my final step to complete my transformation into a female body.
Since SRS is a once in a lifetime event, I want to be certain that I’ve made the absolutely best decision. My questions are many but center around what to expect after recovery. As a previous patient, your insights to what are deeply personal experiences will be of great benefit to me in validating my choice. Specifically: 1. How did you find out about your Dr. and what were the key factors in deciding to go to him for SRS and any other procedures? I did find Dr. Preecha in his web page but also by a recommendation from a friend. I was impressed first with the number of surgeries that he has done – over 2,000 at the time.
His costs fit my purse and made the surgery possible at that time. I had been to Thailand and had relations with Thais over the years and had sufficient frequent flyer miles to pay for the trip business and first class. I also checked out the medical, hospital facilities there and was very impressed with them. I had served for three terms on the Board of Directors of a major hospital in the Midwest so I had a good idea of what I was looking for. I had the SRS, breast implants and trachea shaving all at the same time – in little over three hours – and that time made my surgery even more attractive to my selection. I was 71 at the time and the least time on the table was highly desirable. 2. Did you communicate with a group of his post-op patients before your operation? Yes, here in the Detroit area there is a small group for those in transition as criteria for meeting. Several were post ops – and I also was in close personal contact with a friend who had SRS from Preecha three years earlier. I found this very helpful and reassuring.
3. Do you keep in contact with post-op patients and their progress? As much as I can. But many kind of disappear in what I call going over the horizon. I even had a friend go with me for the SRS and we were and still are very close. I want to keep in even a closer relationship with others hoping to learn even more why some of us are so happy and at peace while others struggle along. Of course some of those in stealth hinder this – but then not the friends of us that knew each other along the voyage of gender change. 4. What additional procedures have been required to fix problems with your vagina? None whatsoever — but my friend that went with me had one of her breast implants realigned and also felt that her new clit was a bit too exposed. While I suspect that some of this may well have been due to her aftercare – I hold my peace on this carefully. She recently visited a surgeon in Wisconsin and had some corrections made and is very happy now in all ways. She also was a patient of Ousterhout with facial surgery and did return for mare alterations there too. It’s pretty hard to satisfy this very pretty and successful professional woman. 5. Do you have what you would consider normal sensations in your vagina? I am very sensate about my clitoris and labial area to a degree that I never could have imagined or hoped for. Similarly the sensitivity and erotic feelings of my vagina are superb. But just remember the clit is not a doorbell and needs a whole new technique of teasing, touching, and loving.
What I have experienced is marvelous – but you do have to have patience in the recovery time and so much of this all is created between the ears as well as between the legs. What I have is so different but so much better than anything I ever had as a male — but there is so much difference that a comparison is impossible. 6. Is your width and depth adequate for sex? Absolutely although I am still very much a little old lady virgin (73) with a ‘tight’ vagina (by the way, men like that!) – but I know what works. I love to remind myself of what the last sentence of instructions on the art of (ZEN) Post Operative Maintenance that came with my set of 5 stents (I can use them all but for pleasure prefer the smallest!) that you should plan on purchasing on the Internet. “Crummy sex is probably worse than none at all, but good sex, well…..” I know how well things down there work – and trust me it will take some patient training of a partner to give me what I want in pleasure from just any male. I want more than a penis and wonder what is attached to it in a suitor or partner. In my opinion and that of women I know that support me along with Dr. Marci Bowers, in Trinidad, CO who I visited recently in June for a personal dinner (she is the post op 6 years that took over Dr. Biber’s SRS practice.) A marvelous woman for sure and the only OB-GYN in the area for 30 to 40 miles. You should have seen the grin on her face at dinner (Chinese too) as she responded to my discussion on vagina depth when she partially opened and curled her thumb and forefinger. Most men do not know how deep a woman’s vagina really is or how much depth ‘macho’ SRS candidates seem to want to have.
Lots of spam ads on the Internet for penile enlargement but have you ever seen one for women wanting a deeper or bigger vagina? I’ll talk more to you if you wish on this subject and even send you the actual measurements (before and after) that my surgeon has on the actual operational room report for me that I needed for my birth certificate change in New York State. (Preecha’s standard SRS letter was not sufficient for NY and they needed the actual hospital operating room records.) The length was not of any importance for the birth certificate but when I reviewed it for my own info I discovered this. Anyhow I have plenty of depth and never really worried about this too much. My recommendation would be to go with priority of sensation and not depth especially if it required thigh skin graft or worse intestinal insertion. 7. Does arousal come easily (or at least equal to prior to SRS)? Arousal will never be the same in time and approach with tenderness with loving and cannot be compared to one for a penis. Arousal takes careful approach just as in the case of a normal woman. There is simply that much difference between a man and a woman. It’s not like a penis, dear, it’s a lovely flower that needs loving foreplay and a giving lover’s touch. There won’t be any more of that ‘Wham bam thank you Ma’am stuff’! The ease will be a function of your psyche as well as touch.
You will need to learn new approaches for yourself and most likely will need or find new fantasies to help in achieving the best results. You will also find erotic spots that may be new to you over your body. 8. If I am so inclined, will my vagina easily allow me to have sex with a male? (I’m interested in the being able to passionately “screw” him, not just passively submit.) Smile, oh you macho you — you should be able to answer this yourself if you read the above carefully and take that to heart. Sex will be up to you and your partner and anyhow who wants to live their lives as a Missionary?
All your genital alignment will be like that of the average healthy female. 9. What should I know that you didn’t, but wish you had, prior to SRS? I can’t really put my thoughts on that – except to encourage you to have good therapy help with very open relationships with your medical team at home. That is especially in regard to hormones and your personal health. Regarding the psyche and therapy – we have pretty much come up with a simple statement and forgive the four-letter word – but if you have your s___ together before surgery you are most likely to have it together after SRS. SRS does not provide a cure all by any means – often it creates problems instead of solving them. You should also be aware that in so many cases the ideas of what a woman really is to the TG is a macho conception full of fetishes and fantasies. That can be difficult because so much is macho junk and far from what a female sees when looking at herself as only a woman can.
By the way – how are you doing on hormones – how long and what types and how much? I have personal feelings here on what is best for SRS results. And how long have you been dressing – and how long living full time as a woman and how successfully? Hope this helps for a start…. Do write or call for anything else you may to ask. I’m wide open to all. Best of love and luck too.
Love to know what your decisions are and before and after.
Bobbi Renae Swan