You’re probably reading this for one of two reasons.
1) You would like to find more ways of figuring out your theriotype.
2) You’re new to this otherkin/therian business and wanna know what the hypes about. Probably not the right post, but welcome!
Whatever reason you’re here- old therian or new- here is a handy guide for figuring out your theriotype.
(DISCLAIMER: I know there have been posts like this in the past, however, more strategies and ideas couldn’t hurt! ^_^)
Step 1: Figure out why you think you’re a therian
it’s incredibly important that you narrow down your therianthropy and separate it from your human side. What makes you different? It’s not just wishful thinking. Make sure you’re not taking human features and interpreting them as animal ones. This is a common mistake. Traits such as liking the company of others do not mean you’re a wolf therian, neither does loving running and being good at it make you a cheetah therian. Similarly, loving a particular animal (i.e mice) to the point where you feel such a connection to the animal you’ve adopted some of their mannerisms does not make you a therian. This is called ‘animal-heartedness’ or ‘kith’
The point is, therianthropy is something you are born with. It has been said countless times and I’ll say it again.
Therianthropy is identifying as an animal, not identifying with one
More therian-like behaviours and tell-tale signs would be a preference to walk on all fours, memories of thinking you were an animal when you were younger, species dysphoria*, instinctively making animal noises such as purring, growling, hissing, howling etc., weird food cravings (such as grass), as well as all types of shifting. These are more therian-like things to do.
If it helps, write down three lists. Completely animal characteristics, characteristics that could be human or animal and completely human characteristics. Then use the list to help with the next steps. If you think you have more than one theriotype then try and sort the 'animal characteristics’ list into
*Feelings of not being born in the right body and general dissatisfaction with your physical appearance.
Step 2: Narrow it down
So you’re a therian for sure, you’ve got your handy list and you’re sitting on the internet wondering what to do next. Well, we are going to start by taking a closer look at your shifts. Not all therians shift, some (contherians) maintain a constant human-animal mentality. So do not be alarmed if you have never experienced a shift, it’s a common occurrence and very normal- you can use the same techniques to figure out your theriotype.
Phantom shifts are very useful for figuring out your theriotype, but for the minute we won’t go deep- what you’re trying to find out is a genus or a family- obviously if you feel feathers, you’re a bird of some sort. In the same way, if you feel a prehensile tail, it would be worth looking into some monkey species, whereas a tail that could only be controlled from the base would probably direct towards other animals (e.g horse).
Think about specifics, the length and density of fur or feather or scale coverage. Do you have wings? Are they coming out of your shoulder blades or a part of your arm? What about paw size, retractable claws, how long is your snout?
M-shifts are just as important. How do you move- on all fours, with grace and ease or with little hops and jumps? What noises do you make- hisses, growls, nickers, howls, whinnies? Or maybe you’re silent and stealthy? What feelings do you get- fear perhaps? Aggression? Or nothing at all… Everything is a clue. Most people will already have a decent idea of what their theriotype is, but that’s no reason to be lazy.
You’d be surprised by what just observing yourself can do.
Keep your list handy and keep adding to it. The more the better!
Try and get down to generic species such as 'canine’, 'ungulate’, 'feline’, 'bird of prey’, 'parasite’.
We’ll get onto species later.
For some of you, that’s it. You are what is called a 'cladotherian’ (As a cladotherian, you encompass all “insert genus here” and you need to go no further on your journey- well done! Congratulations! We send you all the way down to the last step.
(A brief note before Step 3)
Dear all canine therians.
Do not assume you are wolf.,
A still questioning wolf therian.
Step 3: Get to the nitty gritty
So now we are at the most challenging step. The step that almost everyone gets stuck on.
The process is similar to step 2, but even more detailed. It should be simpler now that you know vaguely where to look but do not underestimate it
Here is when your instincts come into play. Many therians have described seeing a picture of an animal and instantly feeling as if 'yes, this is it, this is who I am’. If you are one of those, that’s wonderful, but don’t instantly cast it as your theriotype. Look into the animal, its behaviour, its social life and just the animals general habits. if it feels so much like you that it appears they have written it for you then go to the next step and congratulations!
For the rest of you, you may not be so lucky. If no animal 'pops’ then do not despair, you can still find your theriotype! The key is research, research, research.
Say it with me:
RESEARCH, RESEARCH, RESEARCH
You can not do enough research, theriotype finding is a long and tedious process and you may find yourself looking at the mating habits of the Vietnamese stick insect, but I promise you that once you have looked at all the factors, all the behaviour and social structure and eating and every little thing about all the animals that could possibly be a candidate, you will find your theriotype and it will all be worth it.
Or you will think you have, which brings me onto…
Step 4: You are never finished
After all that, you now have your theriotype, right?
Never stop researching. You may have found that perfect animal for you, but that doesn’t mean you should stop- you never know. I myself am always looking for more suitable theriotypes and am in the midst of investigating hyenas at this very moment ^_^
Basically, repeat step 3 until your arms fall off. If you have found your theriotype you will have no reason to change it to any other animal you’ve researched and if you thought you had but were wrong… well aren’t you glad you looked?
Now go forth, therians and be yourselves!
I hope this helped a few people…
Please tell me what you thought- could anything could be edited? Did I get anything wrong or did anything offend anyone?
Also, leave your tips for other therians on how you discovered your theriotype (I’ll be putting them in as an extra section Smile)
Tumblrs HINTS AND TIPS:
From Beck: My advice…don’t look so hard. It WILL come to you. Trust me :) It always does. When you know…you’ll know!~ I say take a break from searching, then try and go back to it when you have a fresh clear slate in your mind to do so.
And my advice for when you DO go back to searching..
First, try and narrow down specific attributes. Like…some bats eat fruit some bats eat insects, some live off blood, etc. What do you feel you yourself would live off as a bat? How big do you feel you should be? Smaller like a lot of desert bats? Or maybe bigger like a flying fox! (one of my personal favorites). Once that is done you should have an easier time narrowing your options :3
Secondly, try not to look for what “fits” so to speak. Look more at what you feel is right. That’s the main key in a soul search I have found.
And lastly, don’t stress!~ It will all work out. Try out different things. Fail, and fail again because…its okay! ^.^ Nobody expects you to get it right the first time or second time. The third time fourth time…etc. You have an infinite number of tries ;) No rush and no worry.