GayPatriot

Comments

RSS feed for comments on this post.

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: http://www.gaypatriot.net/2009/06/11/i-blame-cher/trackback/

  1. I’m not sure why this is on a gay blog. Gay is not transgender. Transgender is a form of heterosexuality. A Transgendered person is a heterosexual who has been born in the wrong body. A homosexual is someone who loves others of the same sex. As a gay person, I am not required to share my identity with transgenders, or even necessarily sympathize with them, any more than I would with other problems rooted in heterosexuality. For one thing, they can marry, and I can’t.

    I certainly wish him/her the best, but I don’t have to include that stripe on my rainbow. I am G without the BLT. If I want to give my support to non-gay minorities, then my choice is the unborn, the elderly, those without insurance, and undocumented immigrants. I don’t have any obligation to worry about BLTs any more than many on this blog have any obligation to worry about the undocumented or uninsured.

    Comment by Ashpenaz — June 11, 2009 @ 7:09 pm - June 11, 2009

  2. I can only hope that Sonny isn’t turning over in his grave because of this. Chastity was his only child.

    Speaking of which – Cher’s son by Greg Allman, Elijah Blue, is a Friend of Dorothy. Who’da thunk it?

    Shows you what happens when you have a wax figure like Cher as a mom.

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — June 11, 2009 @ 7:24 pm - June 11, 2009

  3. God bless Chastity. I feel sorry for her. It must be difficult being the child of a celebrity, not to mention a wreck like Cher.

    I have known only one transgendered person, and “she” is a raging alcoholic, bar fly well into her 50′s. I also knew a troubled young teen who was gender bending, may have been taking hormones, not sure, but he was leaning towards a sex change, but I am glad to see he didnt and seems to have worked his issues out.

    I have a great deal of sympathy for people who feel transgendered, particularly because I think the psychiatric associations are correct to still classify it as a psychoses. I think it is. It must be very hard. But it is nevertheless a psychoses which cannot be fixed by mutilating the body.

    Now all the little liberals who are constantly demanding that there is no difference between the genders; that women can do everything men can do, and men can do everything women can do, and that a same-sex couple is no different than a male and a female can explain to me how the genders are suddenly totally different and how gender is suddenly significant, and how hateful I am for not recognizing it.

    Comment by American Elephant — June 11, 2009 @ 7:27 pm - June 11, 2009

  4. AE, transexuals / Gender Identity Disorder isn’t a clinical psychosis. Never was. And it’s doubtful, in and of itself, it will be labeled a disorder for much longer.

    Oh, and neither Cher, Sonny, Republicans or Democrats make people transexual, just like none of the above make people gay.

    Comment by Jody — June 11, 2009 @ 8:03 pm - June 11, 2009

  5. Ok, its a psychological disorder. But why is it doubtful it will be classified as one for much longer? Not based on any medical discoveries. There haven’t been any. Chastity does not have a penis, testicles, or a y chromosome. She doesn’t have an adam’s apple, male hair patterns, a deep voice or the strength of a man. There is nothing physically male about her. She has a uterus, fallopian tubes, ovaries. She ovulates, or did, until she suppressed her body’s natural production of estrogen and replaced it with testosterone, which her body does not produce.

    She is capable of being a mother, she will never, no matter how many body parts she cuts out, and how many false appendages she sews on, she will never be able to father a child.

    Her body clearly thinks it is a female body. When you have the body of a female and think you are a male, how is that any different than thinking you are Winston Churchill when you clearly are not?

    When you want to cut off (and out) all the body parts you were born with and replace them with phony appendages that are neither male, nor natural, how is that not a deep and harmful psychosis?

    If a person wanted to cut off all their arms and legs and replace them with prosthetic limbs, we would rightly call them deeply disturbed. But when its their sex organs its just another rational choice.

    Comment by American Elephant — June 11, 2009 @ 9:58 pm - June 11, 2009

  6. Some years ago, I helped develop a set of protocols for a sex change unit in a teaching hospital. The lion’s share of the research went into studying and identifying the psychological factors in play before the procedure and those that should be addressed after the change was finalized. The hospital no longer does this type of procedure, because we found that many of the candidates were in such psychological distress that they needed psychological treatment well after the surgery was successfully completed. If a man is struggling to get released from a woman’s body, it stands to reason that he will not necessarily find the sex change equal to the liberation he anticipated.

    Comment by heliotrope — June 11, 2009 @ 10:17 pm - June 11, 2009

  7. Is she still considered gay? That being said, I hope she doesn’t pull a Mr./Mrs. Garrison by all of a sudden liking men.

    Comment by Roy Mustang — June 11, 2009 @ 10:37 pm - June 11, 2009

  8. I feel so sorry for her. I can’t imagine how it must feel to think you’re not right. I only want what is best for my daughters and cutting or changing who they are would devastate me. I do realize you want your kids to grow up and be happy but never something this extreme. I wish Chasity well and hope she can find happiness in her venture..

    Comment by Bonnie — June 11, 2009 @ 10:42 pm - June 11, 2009

  9. A homosexual is someone who loves others of the same sex. As a gay person, I am not required to share my identity with transgenders, or even necessarily sympathize with them, any more than I would with other problems rooted in heterosexuality…..I certainly wish him/her the best, but I don’t have to include that stripe on my rainbow.

    Guess what, Ash. If your beloved Chairman Obama has his way, you’ll be paying for the procedure. There’s something for you to smile about.

    then my choice is the unborn, the elderly,

    Won’t have to worry about them either. The unborn will have their skulls crushed and their brains sucked out and the elderly will be forced to die “for the greater good”. Anybody who can’t pick up a shovel will be SOL.

    Or maybe Obama will keep some around to go Josef Mengele on.

    So cheer up.

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — June 11, 2009 @ 10:59 pm - June 11, 2009

  10. Cher named her daughter *Chastity*? wow.

    Comment by B.T.Carolus — June 11, 2009 @ 11:52 pm - June 11, 2009

  11. >Ok, its a psychological disorder.

    Well, that’s what the debate is at the moment. Sense of gender is as deeply rooted as sense of sexual orientation. It’s no more changeable than sexual orientation is (which means you can’t.)

    And while there are transexuals with mental illnesses (like depression) the debate and mix of data suggests that it isn’t the gender identity that’s the problem. Or at least that’s the debate.

    It’s a good, though not exact, parallel to where we were in the 1970s, when homosexuality was labeled as a mental illness just because.

    I too can’t imagine what it’s like to look in a mirror and thing that your inner sense of gender is completely at odds with external appearances. Figuring out you are gay is far easier in comparison.

    Comment by Jody — June 12, 2009 @ 1:09 am - June 12, 2009

  12. Ashpenaz:

    You are confusing gender, sex, and sexual orientation – 3 very different concepts. Your claim that all transgendered individuals are heterosexual couldn’t be more wrong (e.g., a MTF who is attracted to women is a lesbian).

    I suggest you read up on this topic before posting anything else.

    Comment by Ashtranny — June 12, 2009 @ 1:23 am - June 12, 2009

  13. oh my! He’d be popular in south florida.

    Comment by Drawnlines_Blog — June 12, 2009 @ 1:52 am - June 12, 2009

  14. Sense of gender is as deeply rooted as sense of sexual orientation

    Horsehockey!

    I cant tell whether a person is gay or straight by looking down their pants, but I can sure as hell tell what gender they are.

    I dont care if you think you are Winston Churchill, Teddy Roosevelt or the Pope, you arent.

    And if you have a vagina, ovaries and a uterus, I’m sorry, no matter how much you may think otherwise, you are not a man, you’re just a woman who’s f*cked in the head.

    Now, should we humor the person who thinks they are Winston Churchill and humor the dude who thinks he’s a chick? Perhaps. But I think your answer indicates that we should not. Its whats known as the inmates running the asylum.

    Comment by American Elephant — June 12, 2009 @ 6:16 am - June 12, 2009

  15. … of course, will anyone notice?

    Comment by Julie the Jarhead — June 12, 2009 @ 7:02 am - June 12, 2009

  16. I’m not sure why this is on a gay blog.

    Ashpenaz, this blog deals with topics other than gay issues. Whether the G should belong to the LBT or not (or GL with the BT, or any other combination), I’ll leave for another time.

    For one thing, they can marry, and I can’t.

    Yes and no. As Ashtranny said, a transgendered person may be straight or gay with the new identity. I guess in Chastity’s case, if she does indeed becomes a man, he would be straight. As for marriage, it depends on the laws of the state. For example, I vaguely recall that a transgendered woman was able to marry another woman, because her original gender was a male.

    American Elephant, I’ll leave it to the professionals to decide if being transgendered in and of itself is a psychological disorder. I’ve met three (that I know of). One clearly had issues and backstabbed friends of mine who couldn’t have been more supportive of her. The other two said that they were happy for the first time when they became women.

    I don’t think it’s the same as trying to co-opt the identity of another specific individual. And sure, sexual orientation and gender identity are different issues, but they do have some issues in common. A person who is born as a male is traditionally expected to behave characteristically as a male. That includes being attracted to women. What’s interesting is how often, especially in the past, a male who had sex with another man was regarded as a women. In other words, people saw gender identity and sexual orientation as the same thing.

    Gay persons in the past, and even still today, struggle with their orientation, because there is still not the same acceptance that we have for most other persons. So you can imagine how much of a struggle it was in the past for gay persons. But now that there is greater acceptance, it is easier for a gay person to thrive as much as anyone else. And it doesn’t require any medical treatment. Obviously, that’s not the case for transgendered persons.

    The other thing is there seems to be, as you put it, that if you are born with a y-chromosome, and the requisite body parts, then you are a man. Period. End of story. The same can be said regarding sexual orientation. You are born with a y-chromosome, then you must be attracted to women. You know what? There are people that still actually believe that. So isn’t it possible that a person born as a male could possibly have the identity of a female?

    I don’t know about you, but my identity as a man is more than the y-chromosome and the other stuff that comes with it. In other words, if I woke up tomorrow with the body of a female, I would still identify as a man. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’d feel that way even I was made a female at birth.

    Because changing genders involves a lot of medical treatment, it makes sense for such a person to undergo psychological counselling. Whereas, if a person who believes he is gay, and acts on it by having relationships with men, and then figures out he really isn’t gay, the problem is easily corrected. Obviously, not the same for a transgendered person who already had surgery.

    Also, I don’t know if gender identity is as deeply rooted as sexual orientation. But because one cannot determine the sexual orientation by “looking down their pants,” but you can with gender, doesn’t make your argument. Besides, you are making the assumption that one’s physical body equals gender identity.

    Comment by Pat — June 12, 2009 @ 9:01 am - June 12, 2009

  17. #10 – “Cher named her daughter *Chastity*? wow.”

    BT, I don’t know how old you are, but the reason Sonny & Cher named their daughter “Chastity” was because that was the name of this low-budget flick they put together in the late 1960s and it was during the course of this filming that Cher discovered she was pregnant.

    Just FYI.

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — June 12, 2009 @ 10:25 am - June 12, 2009

  18. It isn’t possible to change genders. Chastity Bono will always be a female.

    Comment by Ignatius — June 12, 2009 @ 10:30 am - June 12, 2009

  19. Pat,

    The problem with that arguement, and the resulting lopitoffofme or addadictomy, is a) it’s a radial assault on a healthy body, and b) where does it stop?

    Do we start lopping off limbs to treat body dysmorphic disorder? Or should we cover gastric bypass surgery not for obesity but because I’m a skinny guy trapped in a man’s body?* or use gastric bypass to ‘treat’ anorexia? Or breast implants for women with self esteem issues?**

    * As in ‘I should be skinny, but my genes made me fat’.
    ** Yes, women can and do get them all the time for just that reason. They pay for it privately*** and I think it’s a shame to take something as beautiful as the female form and mutiliate it.
    *** Except in the case of reconstruction from breast cancer. Most insurances cover that. They don’t cover replacement of cosmetic breast implants, just the removal.

    Comment by The Livewire — June 12, 2009 @ 10:39 am - June 12, 2009

  20. It isn’t possible to change genders. Chastity Bono will always be a female.

    In the case of Chastity Bono, this is true. In fact, it is generally true. But do not overlook the poor souls who are born with all manner of extra equipment, missing equipment and dual equipment. Gender “clarification” is a world of Alice in Wonderland logic and illogic. That is why when gays embrace the transgender group in their coalitions that I become concerned that they are bogging themselves down in really troublesome matters of psychology.

    Comment by heliotrope — June 12, 2009 @ 10:55 am - June 12, 2009

  21. Ignatius,

    I happen to agree. The ‘pregnant man’ sensation, where the woman had the topside reconstructive surgery, but kept the ovaries and the like for the possibiltiy of creation was still female. To steal the line from Dogma “What defines a woman rests between her legs.”

    Do the people who attacked her cross the line? Yes. There’s a valid concern about what the long term effects of testostrone will do to the child, but that wasn’t what they were attacking.

    I had a friend (now deceased) Domme, rather liberal and tolerant. She accepted the existance of TGs, but felt that they could never have the ‘full expereince’ of the gender because so many of life’s events couldn’t happen. (puberty and first period being the biggest two). She knew a few, and even topped one or two (I think) but didn’t accept them as ‘real’ women.

    Comment by The Livewire — June 12, 2009 @ 10:56 am - June 12, 2009

  22. Livewire, I had a response, lost it, and don’t have time to recreate it. Anyway, to make it short, this is not an easy issue here. And sure, the surgery for gender reassignment is not a simple one. I just don’t think the answer is necessarily to just say, “you’re born that way, now be happy and accept it.”

    Ignatius, yes, we can play semantics here. A person born with xx chromosomes will always be a biological female. But as soon as a person decides to go under gender reassignment to a male, I will refer to that person as a male.

    Comment by Pat — June 12, 2009 @ 12:00 pm - June 12, 2009

  23. If a cell was taken from Chastity and cloned, that cell would become a female. Our gender is defined by our DNA. Changing your body parts doesn’t change your hardwiring any more than putting a Mercedes logo on an Escort.

    Gay is men who love other men. That’s it. Gay is not about gender confusion. I am not confused about my gender or the gender to which I am attracted. I have nothing but sympathy for those with gender confusion, but it’s not a gay issue. I don’t have to put their float in my parade if I don’t want to.

    Comment by Ashpenaz — June 12, 2009 @ 12:41 pm - June 12, 2009

  24. #7: I do not know if he/she is still considered a lesbian or not…my question is when he/she becomes a man, is her lover still considered a lesbian? Or is she now a het?

    Comment by FortWorthGuy — June 12, 2009 @ 12:59 pm - June 12, 2009

  25. If a cell was taken from Chastity and cloned, that cell would become a female. Our gender is defined by our DNA. Changing your body parts doesn’t change your hardwiring any more than putting a Mercedes logo on an Escort.

    Might be an urban legend, but there is Jamie Lee Curtis.

    I have nothing but sympathy for those with gender confusion, but it’s not a gay issue. I don’t have to put their float in my parade if I don’t want to.

    You’re not alone in feeling that way, but would it still be a sandwich without the tomato? ;-)

    Comment by The Livewire — June 12, 2009 @ 1:06 pm - June 12, 2009

  26. Horsehockey!

    We’ve known for over 50 years that all of us have an internal “sense” of sexual orientation, of gender, of even “self.” It always line up with chromosomes and there’s really no convincing evidence you can forcibly change it.

    Mooney was one of the first to articulate this, though he thought gender identity was fairly plastic and could be reset with gender reassignment, a lot of socialization and therapy. Didn’t work out so well. Reimers case was further confirmation, and the tragedy of it has, in part, contributed to our whole reassessment of the diagnosis of “Gender Identity Disorder.”

    Having worked in an asylum, this is anything but that.

    I don’t mean this as an insult AE, but you sound a heck of a lot like all those folks I encountered during homophobia education programs, who said if you had a cock you were to stick it in a vagina. They were quite sure that everything else was “horsehockey” As Haldane said, the universe is not only queerer than we imagine is queerer than we can imagine.

    Comment by Jody — June 12, 2009 @ 1:40 pm - June 12, 2009

  27. If a cell was taken from Chastity and cloned, that cell would become a female. Our gender is defined by our DNA.

    I don’t think anyone is taking issue with that.

    Changing your body parts doesn’t change your hardwiring any more than putting a Mercedes logo on an Escort.

    Exactly! For example, if tomorrow morning, I woke up as a female physically, it’s not going to change my hardwiring. Thankfully, I doubt very much that such a scenario would happen. What’s unfortunate is that there are people born as a male, but yet are hardwired as a female, and vice versa.

    Gay is men who love other men. That’s it. Gay is not about gender confusion. I am not confused about my gender or the gender to which I am attracted.

    That’s pretty much true, except that there are still people that believe that you and I are confused. Similarly, a transgendered person isn’t necessarily confused either. They know what their gender identity is. They just don’t have the body parts that match it.

    Comment by Pat — June 12, 2009 @ 1:54 pm - June 12, 2009

  28. #25 – “Might be an urban legend, but there is Jamie Lee Curtis.”

    Sorry, but it IS an urban legend. Jamie Lee Curtis is not a hermaphrodite. Follow the link:

    http://urbanlegends.about.com/od/jamieleecurtis/a/jamieleecurtis.htm

    Regards,
    Peter H.

    Comment by Peter Hughes — June 12, 2009 @ 4:59 pm - June 12, 2009

  29. Ah hell Pat…

    For some reason I always ‘heard’ your posts as if you were female.

    Comment by The_Livewire — June 12, 2009 @ 5:10 pm - June 12, 2009

  30. Thank you Peter,

    I couldn’t get to the links at work. Damn firewalls.

    Comment by The_Livewire — June 12, 2009 @ 5:12 pm - June 12, 2009

  31. American Elephant, I’ll leave it to the professionals to decide if being transgendered in and of itself is a psychological disorder.

    Pat,
    they already have decided, and it is a psychological disorder. It is only liberal activists who utterly wasted their college years wallowing in liberal psychobabble in “gender studies” who say it isn’t.

    The psychiatric associations all agree it’s nuts.

    Jody,

    Don’t worry, You dont insult me. You sound like one of the gender studies timewasters I spoke of. And despite all your meaningless pyschobabble, the medical and psychiatric associations still agree with me.

    Its nuts.

    Comment by American Elephant — June 12, 2009 @ 6:29 pm - June 12, 2009

  32. AE, I don’t give a great deal of countenance to gender studies programs. Lots of theory, little evidence and whole lot of attitude. Same goes for those who believe their personal experience is the height of informed discussion or the arbiter of reality.

    That there is a debate over the politics GID and the the science isn’t in doubt. Based in on the science, other western countries no longer regard transexuality as a mental illness. So my original point that it’s under debate at the moment stands.

    The extent of your argument remains it’s so because I believe it to be so, which, in the end, is the same justification the gender studies, queer studies and homophobes use.

    Comment by Jody — June 12, 2009 @ 8:48 pm - June 12, 2009

  33. because that was the name of this low-budget flick they put together in the late 1960s and it was during the course of this filming that Cher discovered she was pregnant.

    Hank Hill type “Uggh.”

    Don’t know what’s worse, Pete. The sex change or the fact that you know that info off the top of your head.

    Comment by ThatGayConservative — June 13, 2009 @ 3:40 am - June 13, 2009

  34. Jody, Its interesting that while you say the science isn’t in doubt, only the politics is, the “scientific” evidence you present is a tranny activist website, and your scientific evidence that other western countries no longer regard it as a mental illness is a political website where they admit that transsexualism is technically called “gender identity disorder

    or, in layman’s terms, cuckoo

    and as further scientific evidence, you refer me to a french article that also refers to a political decision, not a scientific one.

    Actually, Jody, you have it exactly backwards. YOU are the one who is arguing that it is so because you believe it to be so.

    I have pointed out that the medical associations agree with me, to which you have responded with the pronouncements of political organizations and political activists.

    Even your own political organizations still must admit the medical view has not changed and that these people are still considered psychologically disordered. aka. cuckoo.

    you did however, provide one, un-reviewed, un-replicated study that says “male gender identity might be partly mediated through the androgen receptor.” [emphasis mine] the corollary conclusion being that it also might not… which means, in layman’s terms, they didn’t come anywhere near establishing anything, and you are nonetheless citing it as science upon which the declassification of transsexualism as a mental disorder should be based.

    In short: you say it is so, because you want it to be so, but the expert associations still agree with me. Biology still agrees with me. There is even a book by a transsexual who regrets having gone through the surgery and agrees with me that it is a mental disorder, I dont remember the name, but perhaps someone else does.

    Boys have a penis, girls have a vagina, trannies have issues. God bless them all with every happiness in the world, but please dont ask me to call someone a male because she cut off her breasts, scooped out her vagina and had some skin from her ass removed and reshaped into something resembling a penis and sewn on in the front.

    Comment by American Elephant — June 13, 2009 @ 7:47 am - June 13, 2009

  35. Pat,

    Let me add one thing, after 12 hours of sleep.

    I don’t see an issue with someone making cosmetic alterations, with their own pocketbook (provided they can find a doctor willing to stretch their ethics) I think it’s a damn shame, and sad (I don’t even dye the grey in my hair) it’s their body and assuming they’re not in the process of carrying a passenger it’s their choice. But to take a perfectly functional body and render it into a non-functioning simulation, and expect someone else to pay for it as a ‘mental illness’ is wrong.

    Jody, do you support amputation of limbs to ‘treat’ body dysmorphic disorder?

    Comment by The_Livewire — June 13, 2009 @ 9:11 am - June 13, 2009

  36. I can totally assure Ashpenaz that transsexuality is *not* a form of heterosexuality.

    Gender identity and sexual preference are orthogonal; there are gay, straight *and* bi transsexuals.

    Livewire is way off base believing genetics define gender; there’s lots of real-world cases that demonstrate why this is so…and it’s a core reason why the State shouldn’t be trying to define who may marry whom especially by gender. See http://tinyurl.com/lhbc2j for a PoV from a professor of anatomy and cell biology for more details.

    As for the results of FtM surgery being “non-functional”, I can’t really comment. But I do know that successful MtF surgery is functional.

    “Mental disorder”, well… the current DSM calls transsexuality a personality disorder. “Personality disorders, formerly referred to as character disorders, are a class of personality types which deviate from the contemporary expectations of a society.”

    I guess that’s why homosexuality used to be one.

    Comment by MaggieLeber — June 13, 2009 @ 9:37 pm - June 13, 2009

  37. Technically, I’m Intersexed rather than Trans, but as it’s one of the conditions leading to a natural sex change, close enough. The more common ones are 5alpha-reductase-2 deficiency and 17beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase-3 deficiency.

    Hi Zoe,

    Yes, we gave our presentation to 60 plus psychiatrists from the US, AU, FR, IT, EU, UK, Holland etc.

    We spoke for 2 1/2 hours on why cross gender identity was a normal inherited variation of humans. We showed how Transgender Brains think, smell, and hear like the opposite sex. We presented internationally accepted guidelines for hormonal treatment of transsexuals to be published Summer 2009.

    Here are my slides and with my participants’ permission I shall send you theirs. We are now in print in the APA Syllabus and soon in the APA Journal this summer. I am checking if we were recorded.

    My greatest personal compliment came from Frank Kruijver, from Holland, whose research of the human brain in TSs started it all. He thought we have taken his work very far in our understanding of the human brain. Hope you can do something with this.

    Sid Ecker, M.D.

    Professor Ecker gave his presentation to the American Psychiatric Association annual conference, in the seminar ” The Neurobiological Evidence for Transgenderism” along with Prof. Milton Diamond.

    http://aebrain.blogspot.com/2009/05/brain-gender-identity-presentation-by.html has links to the slides, and the extensive bibliography, giving the results of human and animal experimentation over the last 25 years.

    Comment by Zoe Brain — June 14, 2009 @ 8:06 am - June 14, 2009

  38. Here’s a few more of those studies that are available online:

    Male-to-female transsexuals show sex-atypical hypothalamus activation when smelling odorous steroids. by Berglund et al Cerebral Cortex 2008 18(8):1900-1908;

    …the data implicate that transsexuality may be associated with sex-atypical physiological responses in specific hypothalamic circuits, possibly as a consequence of a variant neuronal differentiation.

    Male–to–female transsexuals have female neuron numbers in a limbic nucleus. Kruiver et al J Clin Endocrinol Metab (2000) 85:2034–2041

    The present findings of somatostatin neuronal sex differences in the BSTc and its sex reversal in the transsexual brain clearly support the paradigm that in transsexuals sexual differentiation of the brain and genitals may go into opposite directions and point to a neurobiological basis of gender identity disorder.

    Sexual differentiation of the human brain: relevance for gender identity, transsexualism and sexual orientation. Swaab Gynecol Endocrinol (2004) 19:301–312.

    Solid evidence for the importance of postnatal social factors is lacking. In the human brain, structural diferences have been described that seem to be related to gender identity and sexual orientation.

    A sex difference in the human brain and its relation to transsexuality. by Zhou et al Nature (1995) 378:68–70.

    Our study is the first to show a female brain structure in genetically male transsexuals and supports the hypothesis that gender identity develops as a result of an interaction between the developing brain and sex hormones

    A sex difference in the hypothalamic uncinate nucleus: relationship to gender identity. by Garcia-Falgueras et al Brain. 2008 Dec;131(Pt 12):3132-46.

    We propose that the sex reversal of the INAH3 in transsexual people is at least partly a marker of an early atypical sexual differentiation of the brain and that the changes in INAH3 and the BSTc may belong to a complex network that may structurally and functionally be related to gender identity.

    Testimony in Kantaras vs Kantaras:

    Q. Dr. Cole, does the fact that a condition is listed in the DSM
    mean that it necessarily has a purely mental or
    psychological cause?

    A. Absolutely not. It’s listed in the DSM because it
    has to do with the mind, with the brain, with
    emotional suffering. I mean, you also have learning
    disabilities in there.
    You have, you know, people who have sexual
    problems, a man with erection problems, a woman
    with orgasm problems, that’s listed in the DSM, but
    it has nothing to do with somebody being unstable.

    Q. So the fact that gender identity disorder is listed in
    the DSM, does that tell us anything one way or the
    other about whether the condition has a
    physiological or biological cause?

    A. No, it doesn’t. It’s very controversial even within
    the Benjamin Association to have it listed in the
    DSM. There are many people who argue it should
    be moved over to a medical kind of diagnosis as
    opposed to a psychiatric diagnosis.

    Given the attitude expressed by some commentators, no wonder so many trans people have been driven nuts. Until 1995, no-one had taken the “male brain in female body” conjecture seriously enough to do autopsies, and the genetic testing and MRI scanning technology is even more recent. We now have evidence from totally independant teams working in the disperate fields of neuro-biology, endocrinology, genetics, tomography, and psychology, all individually insufficient for proof, but all, without exception, saying the same thing. When sample sizes were in the 10′s, and in only one field, it was possible to say that the evidence was thin. But with samples in the multiple thousands, and that means every trans person in a population of tens of millions, to continue to say it’s “unproven” defies belief.

    Comment by Zoe Brain — June 14, 2009 @ 8:33 am - June 14, 2009

  39. For some reason I always ‘heard’ your posts as if you were female.

    Really, Livewire? Well, I do try to keep things toned down a bit here. Maybe that’s a female trait more than male, I don’t know. Perhaps I should have posted as “Patrick” to avoid any confusion, but I don’t want to change now.

    But to take a perfectly functional body and render it into a non-functioning simulation, and expect someone else to pay for it as a ‘mental illness’ is wrong.

    Perhaps so. Yeah, the body may be perfectly functional, but as you suggest, the brain is not functioning perfectly. If an operation can help, I’m all for it. But obviously, because of the nature of the surgery, it should only be done after plenty of counseling and medical consultations.

    Frankly, if I was in that situation, I’m not sure what I would do. It sounds like if you were, you’d just bite the bullet and live with it. And that’s fine, too. A lot of people have done that as well.

    Jody, do you support amputation of limbs to ‘treat’ body dysmorphic disorder?

    If that’s okay, I’d like to take a crack at this. My answer would be no. It seems to me that there is something else going on here, and amputation would probably not solve the mental disorder anyway. This seems different than what’s going on with a transgendered person. But any surgery should not happen without counseling to make sure what what’s going on. This is necessary to make sure the issue is gender identity, and not something else. Or external causes, such as a boy being told that he’s not masculine enough, and then believing it.

    they already have decided, and it is a psychological disorder. It is only liberal activists who utterly wasted their college years wallowing in liberal psychobabble in “gender studies” who say it isn’t.

    The psychiatric associations all agree it’s nuts.

    AE, my point is, what part of it is a psychological disorder? Is it because they have a body that doesn’t match their hardwiring? Or is it something else. An amputee who has a psychological disorder would likely be because they have loss of limb(s). Should they just accept it, or try to do something medically about it, if possible?

    Comment by Pat — June 14, 2009 @ 4:40 pm - June 14, 2009

  40. The part that is a psychological disorder is being biologically one sex, from genitals, to chromosomes, to male pattern baldness, and thinking that you are another.

    Zoe,

    I’m pretty sure the same or a similar studies have been done regarding homosexual brains, and homosexual brains have things in common with brains of people of the opposite sex as well.

    That doesn’t make me a woman, it doesn’t make you a woman, it doesnt make chastity bono a man.

    And regarding your studies, perhaps you should send them to the medical and psychiatric associations — because either they haven’t seen them, or they saw them, and were not persuaded. because their classification of transsexualism has not changed.

    I wish you the very best. I support your right to do whatever you need to do in order to be happy so long as it isn’t illegal, immoral, and doesn’t infringe on others. But if and when people demand that others and the law recognize that you ARE a woman because you had drastic plastic surgery, radical hormone and other artificial treatments, that is when it begins to infringe on others.

    Comment by American Elephant — June 14, 2009 @ 7:03 pm - June 14, 2009

  41. Come back after a few days and see some really knowledgeable people have posted some great links. Awesome stuff.

    AE, what you aren’t getting is that the discussions going on at the APA right now are precisely because of all of those studies others have posted here. The research shows that things aren’t as simple as you want them to be. Trans folks aren’t “nuts” in even the most general sense of the word.

    We know that sense of gender, just like sense of sexual orientation, is something deeply rooted in the brain, above and beyond sex chromosomes or primary and secondary sexual characteristics. Again, like sexual orientation, something else again is at work in the brain, something that we’re only just now starting to understand.

    The debate at the APA is over whether or not GID should continue to be included in the DSM as a disorder, if it really meets the standards for impairment. I’ve read several people who argue it should, that the arguments put forth by the transcommunity are lacking — and I’ve read the counter response right back. Once you get past the knee-jerk activists on both sides, and start getting into people who understand the science of it, it’s much better and more pertinent discussion.

    The only treatment that has positive, long term outcome is gender reassignment surgery. And the way that’s paid for by insurance is because of the medical and psychiatric diagnosis stemming from the DSM. If you remove the disordered status, under our current health care system, you remove the key way trans folks get peace of mind. That’s a bit of a Catch 22.

    Comment by Jody — June 14, 2009 @ 11:24 pm - June 14, 2009

  42. Jody, do you support amputation of limbs to ‘treat’ body dysmorphic disorder?

    Livewire, you are actually thinking of Body Integrity Identity Disorder — Body Dysmorphic Disorder is when people are preoccupied with minor flaws in their appearance — and I don’t know.

    Again, it’s probably something neurobiological and not “acquired phobia,” like an inverse phantom limb phenomena. I believe V.S. Ramachandran talks about in A Brief Tour of Human Consciousness.

    But do I support amputation? Ugh. I don’t know. With GID, the evidence we have says that in most cases, especially when dealing with teens, Gender Reassignment Surgery has fairly good outcomes. I know there’s debate about it but at least that’s how I read the results.

    I doubt any surgeons will amputate for BIID unless there’s some other risk. A quick google search shows that people will do it to themselves, either cut a limb off on their own or will kill the circulation in a limb and force a doctor to amputate to save their life.

    That presents a horrible ethical dilemma. It doesn’t respond to talk therapy, so that’s out. We have no medicine for it, so that’s out. We don’t know yet exactly what’s going on neurologically, so were decades away from a treatment. We can lock them down for the rest of their lives as a danger to themselves… which seems pretty horrible…. until you realize they’re going to do it to themselves… which might kill them anyway… so should you then safely, medically amputate because all other things being equal, that does less harm than them doing it to themselves? I don’t like any of the answers.

    It’s also why I’m glad I don’t practice in any shape anymore….

    Comment by Jody — June 14, 2009 @ 11:51 pm - June 14, 2009

  43. Sorry. Forgot the close italic bracket.

    Comment by Jody — June 14, 2009 @ 11:52 pm - June 14, 2009

  44. The part that is a psychological disorder is being biologically one sex, from genitals, to chromosomes, to male pattern baldness, and thinking that you are another.

    AE, I once met a woman, who was biologically a woman (and as far as I know genitals and chromosomes, etc.), but clearly exhibit the appearances and behaviors of a man. Even had male pattern baldness. I didn’t know her well enough to know her mental state, and whether she ever thought about having gender reassignment surgery, but I don’t think she thought she was a man. Perhaps felt she would have been better sutied as a biological male.

    Maybe we are playing semantics here. Perhaps I would agree with you if a biological male thought he was a woman. It seems to me it’s more like he thinks he is better suited to being a woman.

    Comment by Pat — June 15, 2009 @ 7:03 am - June 15, 2009

  45. Not visited this thread in a while…

    Pat,

    I don’t know why I ‘pinged’ you as female, I’ll blame that bad SNL skit from years ago. :)

    Jody,

    Thanks for your answer. I’m not a medical practitioner, but just still can’t get my head around altering the body to fix the mind. Thank you for correcting the name of the disorder though.

    Comment by The Livewire — June 17, 2009 @ 9:40 am - June 17, 2009

Leave a comment

Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

**Note: Your first comment is held for moderation. Avoid profanity, avoid personal attacks on fellow commenters, and avoid complaining about personal attacks (even on you). Feel free to disagree with anyone, but focus on their ideas; give us the information that you think they overlooked.**


Live preview of comment

Close this window.

0.358 Powered by Wordpress