During a DIY surgery, 23-year-old Trent Gates did something that very few people would ever consider. He had his testicles and penis removed from his body. The first DIY procedure occurred in his own apartment back in April 2016 and resulted in the removal of his testicles. In a North Carolina motel room during the month of Trump’s inauguration in January 2017, Trent Gates had his penis removed in a similar operation.
Since having his genitals removed, Trent Gates admits that he has experienced more intimacy with other people rather than less. Because he underwent these extreme body modification surgeries, he now identifies as a “nullo.” This is a subculture of people, predominately men, who have had their genitals removed in surgeries similar to what Trent Gates underwent in North Carolina and D.C.
When he first underwent his body modification surgery, Gates said that he did it to help deal with his severe depression. As a worker in IT, he said he never felt like a man nor a woman, but “an androgynous in-between.” Because he was never able to express himself as a human being fully, the surgery allowed him the freedom to be who he feels in his heart he is.
In the years since undergoing both operations, Gates has found love and acceptance. He has a boyfriend who loves him exactly as he is, body modifications, and all. However, Gates never told his parents about his intentions to undergo the life-altering surgery until he had completed both of them, and there was no turning back.
Although he has undergone the radical procedure, Gates admits that his sex life has never been as good as it is now.
Not only did Gates use a sharp ceramic knife to remove his body parts, but he also kept the genitals in the freezer until his mother found them and threw them into the trash.
Trent Gates performed the surgery himself. He said that he sanitized the blade and took painkillers to dull the pain. He got the inspiration to neuter himself after learning about the famous “nullo” named Gelding (pictured) when he was just fifteen.
“Nullos” also go by the nickname “smoothie,” because they have surgically undergone the process of removing their genitals and sometimes their nipples.
The subculture is a complicated one that does not have a single definition. Some people identify as eunuchs but Gates identities as a non-binary person who is sexually attracted to men.
“I used a ceramic (knife) because its sharper than the steel, less ripping and tearing,” Gates told Metro Online. The IT worker took “every precaution” before he cut off his genitals and brought himself to the hospital immediately afterward to make sure they could keep him safe and secure.
“I honestly did not have a problem with the pain. I used a little bit of a numbing agent, a little bit of lidocaine on it, and I took to five milligrams of oxycodone that they prescribed me when I did my balls to take the edge off.”
Following the procedure, he used a catheter to ensure he could keep open a hole so he could urinate.
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