These comments are from my pre-op point of view, but I suppose it applies to post-op guys as well if you have the same issue.
So, what is the issue about trans guys being shirtless? No, there is no issue if it’s just about themselves and not others.
Let’s put it this way, there are many trans guys who will be so proud of their body, pre-op or post-op, and will tell you that “just please take the shirt off and stop covering yourself. We’re guys. Guys don’t do that.” Well, I’m sure most of us pre-op would like to take our shirts of and not being scared away because of our breasts, but can it always be like that?
Life is all pink and beautiful. Let’s imagine if we pre-op walk around without shirt or anything to cover our chests with, I don’t know, it sounds like a disaster to me. It’s not just that people would be staring, but that WE would be staring at ourselves and ask ourselves what is wrong with us? Having something to cover our chests, whether it’s a shirt, a binder, a hand or just anything at all covers ourselves from seeing something we absolutely hate.
Here, let’s put it this way. There are men on the beach. A few are so proud of their body and the rest are not for whatever reason. Now, the confident ones are taking off their shirts and revealing their chest, perfect or not, they don’t care. They’re confident. So what if they start yelling at fellow guys to take off their shirts to be “a man”? It sounds crazy, but that is what happens to us trans guys as well. Someday, there will be this random guy who is proud of their chest, he’s 24/7 shirtless. And he will come knock on your door and if he sees you in a shirt, he will start yelling at you, telling you how “unmanly” it is to cover your chest like that.
Do you see the problem of trans guys and going shirtless? While I understand that everyone should love their body, and that each body is perfect in their own way, I still think this is off limit.
Not everyone is fine with being shirtless. Not everyone is cool with taking shirtless pictures without anything covering their chests.
The right to cover our chests - whether it is shirt, a small banner, an emoji, should be ours, not other guys who tell us we’re not manly enough.