TO PACK OR NOT TO PACK???
This might not be the answer you were looking for, but we may as well be upfront: we can't tell you whether or not packing is going to work for you. For some FTMs, packing is the thing that helps alleviate their dysphoria more than anything else. I know guys who have cried when they put on a new packer because they were so happy and finally felt like they were seeing the version of themselves they see in their hearts.
At the same time, other guys report that packing can exacerbate their dysphoria, or feel that the anxiety of a packer potentially falling out can override any positive side-effects of packing. I know a transguy for whom the act of having to put on something extra every day reminded him of what he wanted but didn't have. Packing isn't for everyone. In fact, one of our most popular (and hilarious) blog posts is about a guy who discovers he absolutely hates packing.
Of course, like everything in life, packing isn't black and white - some guys like it some of the time, or in certain situations or on special occasions. Some guys have long phases where packing feels great and then overnight decide they're done with it. And there's a third camp of guys who in general just can't be bothered. In fact, for the good majority of the past 15 years, this was the camp that I belonged to. Packing felt completely unnecessary and though I owned a packer, there were full years where it just never occurred to me to wear it. Nowadays, I pack a couple days a week and that works just fine for me.
While we can't tell you which camp you belong to, for those of you who are reading this because you are new to packing, or aren't sure if it's right for you, we've compiled a couple of popular reasons people choose to pack:
1. TO ALLEVIATE DYSPHORIA
We've already mentioned this one, but it's worth saying again as it tends to be the number one reason guys choose to pack. Not every transguy has bottom dysphoria, but for those that do, having a nice, realistic bulge in your pants can be like a deep sigh of relief.
Unless your occupation is go-go boy, in 99% of your daily life, people are probably not staring at your crotch. But that doesn't mean that there aren't situations in which a lack of a bulge can be incredibly conspicuous. I know a guy who likes to go out dancing at gay bars and grind (consensually) on strangers. He's not necessarily looking to come out to every cute boy he twirls with, and so packing on these occasions means no awkward questions.
Of course, it's completely your right to choose when and to whom you want to out yourself. But there are also situations and environments where outing yourself as transgender is a potential safety issue. For those of you who live in parts of the world that are openly hostile to trans people, packing in any situation where you might be clocked (eg. stripping down to your underwear at the gym) can help you blend into the background.
For some guys, having a nice package just makes them feel more comfortable. They walk a little taller, with a little more swagger, and feel more confident at work, with their partners, or just going about their day.
4. IT CAN BE A TURN ON
It's not uncommon to hear guys report that packing can be a turn on. Whether it's a result of the physical sensation of having something press on your junk, or if it's just exciting mentally to finally have the bulge you want, many guys report becoming aroused when packing. If this happens to you, rest assured you are completely normal and in good company.
Think you're ready to try your first packer? Check out the extra small Mr. Limpy - an excellent starter packer.