Testosterone therapy: what’s it like?

Andrew Sullivan’s fascinating account of taking testosterone for medical reasons.

Within hours, and at most a day, I feel a deep surge of energy. It is less edgy than a double espresso, but just as powerful. My attention span shortens. In the two or three days after my shot, I find it harder to concentrate on writing and feel the need to exercise more. My wit is quicker, my mind faster, but my judgment is more impulsive. It is not unlike the kind of rush I get before talking in front of a large audience, or going on a first date, or getting on an airplane, but it suffuses me in a less abrupt and more consistent way. In a word, I feel braced. For what? It scarcely seems to matter.

Fascinating anecdotal account of what it’s like to develop synthetic, artificially-induced secondary sex characteristics.


6 Responses to Testosterone therapy: what’s it like?

  1. jessperson says:

    Totally fascinating, thorough article. It gave me lots to think about—thanks for posting.

  2. Kelly says:

    Ugh–this made me cringe:

    Testosterone’s antidepressive power is only marginally understood. It doesn’t act in the precise way other antidepressants do, and it probably helps alleviate gloominess primarily by propelling people into greater activity and restlessness, giving them less time to think and reflect. (This may be one reason women tend to suffer more from depression than men.)

    Pathologizing womanhood one whacked out theory at a time.

    Keep in mind that there is probably more variance in testosterone levels between people (male and female) then there is between genders.

  3. Kelly says:

    I’m sorry, but are you freakin kidding me with this?!:

    Studies have also shown that men in long-term marriages see their testosterone levels progressively fall and their sex drives subsequently decline. It is as if their wives successfully tame them, reducing their sexual energy to a level where it is more unlikely to seek extramarital outlets.

  4. stamperoo says:

    Maybe Andrew Sullivan doesn’t know any actual women….?

  5. anonymous says:

    From an anonymous commenter:

    It makes me wonder if anyone has analysed the effects of estrogen and made it the normative case.

  6. Great article. Regarding the comment above, I think the drop in testosterone levels after marriage occurs because the need or desire to compete for woman diminishes. The drive to procreate and breed is the driving force behind testosterone production.

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