Transgender

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  • Barnabas62Barnabas62 Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host, Epiphanies Host
    I think there is plenty of scope to make the issue of the GRC much less onerous and I hope revision of the law covering that takes place very soon.

    The current NHS guidelines for diagnosis and treatment of gender dysphoria probably need streamlining. Clearly a diagnosis needs to be confirmed. Taking care over diagnosis is just normal, prior to commencing medical and/or surgical treatment. Pills cannot be issued and surgeons cannot act without a clear confirmed diagnosis. Personally I would have thought one physician could confirm the diagnosis for issue of pills and provision of other support, and it would be for a consulting surgeon to approve surgery in addition to that. These kinds of confirmations are absolutely normal for any medical and surgical treatment. In effect, doctors and surgeons never take the patient's word for any kind of diagnosis. We describe our symptoms, they make diagnoses.

    It's possible to separate GRC issue from any medical and surgical support. That might mean allowing self ID for the GRC but the issue of a GRC would not in itself be sufficient to provide automatic approval for medical and surgical treatment. The treatment is remedial for the discomfort and distress and like any other form of discomfort and distress we consult with doctors to get their professional opinion on appropriate treatment. That's how we get access to any kind of treatment.
  • Curiosity killedCuriosity killed Shipmate
    edited July 2019
    eta Cross post with Barnabas62

    Thinking of transpeople presenting at different ages and bearing in mind nobody in the UK currently can transition hormonally or surgically until they are over 18 and that transpeople are successfully living as their gender identity without a GRC (Gender Recognition Certificate) and/or medical intervention:

    Do we accept a 3 year old's self-ID without further investigation and/or without expecting them to persist in that belief? Can they really express that self-ID reliably at 3? The child I know of has had psychological support locally and then referral to GIDS (the Gender Identity Development Service) and is now transitioning socially at age 7, having persisted in that self-ID for 4 years. I suspect she will be prescribed puberty blockers and transition at 18 if she still wants to transition then. Anecdotally, from earlier on this thread, children presenting younger do not always persist in that belief until they are adult.

    Do we accept a 12 year old's self-ID without medical investigation? Especially as what may be prescribed at that stage are puberty blocking hormones and they should not be prescribed without medical supervision? The people I knew well presenting at that age were not clear in presentation until they'd achieved puberty. One was diagnosed and transitioned age 18 having been supported with psychological support in the meantime, the other continued with the psychological support to deal with other issues.

    I've met other young people presenting at that age, but, because it was the source of a major school row, the youngster presenting did not remain in that school but was allowed to socially transition somewhere else.

    What happens if the transperson presents after puberty? When, whether they wanted it to happen or not, it is likely that the transperson's secondary sex characteristics have developed to match that of their sex assigned at birth (SAAB), not their gender identity. Do we just accept self-ID at that stage?

    Do we accept a 25 year old prisoner's self-ID without further investigation? The UK prison service had a couple of murders of transwomen prisoners imprisoned in men's prisons in 2015. As a response, from November 2016 the prison service allowed self-ID and transfer between prisons following a transgender case review board. That has been further tightened up following the Karen White case where the transgender case review board was found not to have considered all the evidence. That transgender case review board is investigating further.

    Do we allow self-ID in sport? The issue here is women's sport because women's sporting results tend to be shorter, slower or lower than men's results. Transmen aren't winning in the same way that transwomen are. Do we allow transwomen with self-ID to compete as women in sport? Currently it depends on the sport which interventions are required.
  • I've not read the whole thread (and I'm probably not going to), just some of the Hell & Styx threads. My impression was that this thread is missing personal experiences of gender dysphoria etc. So here you go:

    When I was around infant school age, I had massive gender dysphoria. I (male) wanted to be a girl. Like crazy. It consumed me. I used to fall asleep just repeating the phrase, "I want to be a girl" in my head. At school I wished I was a girl. There was the funny anecdote in our family about the day my sister dressed me up as a girl, and rather than feeling shame or embarrassment over it, there was mostly the thrill and yearning. And sadness that it wasn't really me. I was so sad that I'd been born a boy, and that it was impossible for me to be a girl.

    I never told anyone, and in time, it diminished. By the age of around ten it had pretty much receded. It's only relatively recently that I've begun to understand that part of me, and why it diminished. I had a bit of a lightbulb moment when I realised just how many heroes of mine are gender fluid or androgynous in some way.

    My dad was a big Queen fan, and as it was in the 80's we had a handful of VHS tapes. These included the Queen Wembley and Budapest videos, and I would watch them over and over and over. Reflecting back, I think that seeing Freddie Mercury peacocking around with his confident freedom of self-expression must have unlocked something in my mind (though all subconscious) that said that was okay to be yourself. Here was a man who was still a man, but was able to embrace both the masculine and feminine parts of himself with pride. So maybe I didn't have to be a girl to be me.

    Fast forward twenty five years, and to the outside world, I've lived my life and a standard 'bloke'. No one would have known about that internal side of me. But, like I said, I think the way that I've expressed that side of me is through a massive love of music and comedy and film where people have the bravery to cross gender boundaries. I have an unreasonable love of Pantomimes*. I love League of Gentlemen, Rocky Horror, Mighty Boosh, Smashing Pumpkins, and of course Queen. I never got round to listening to enough Bowie, but from what I know I love him too.

    I find the idea of cross-dressing interesting. For a lot of trans men it seems to be about the high-heels, make-up and so on. But I think if I was female, then I'd just be the kind of female that just wears jeans and a t-shirt and can't be bothered to wear make-up. So, yeah, I cross-dress every day, suckers. That said, guy-liner is the coolest and if I could act I would LOVE to be a Pantomime Dame. That would be amazing.

    On reflection, I'm kind of glad I didn't tell anyone what I was going through as a kid. I think exposure to different people, different way of being is hugely important. Freddie Mercury was enough for me (!) The two nightmares if I was young today would be being singled out by either a well-meaning social worker who would force me down a path it turns out I didn't actually need to go on; or a well-meaning evangelical who would take it upon themselves to pray the trans away. Both extremes are vomit-inducing. For me, I think the best way to help kids who are experiencing gender-dysphoria is simply awareness. Talk to all the kids, as a group, about how people are different. Help them ALL understand it's okay to be different. The idea of having any one-on-one counselling time or whatever as a young child would have been terrifying, though. Plus children are hugely impressionable. I do worry that although gender dysphoria is very real, like with me, it's not always permanent, so treatments shouldn't be rushed into.

    Also, I think it's hugely important to break down the stupid gender barriers and stereotypes that exist in society. Maybe that's why so many of my heroes are people who do that and are accepted in society. Yay Noel Fielding and Eddie Izzard and Russel Brand and Freddie Mercury and Richard O'Brien (and yes, I'm aware that is an all-male and all-UK list).

    On the other hand, to anyone who says it's not real, screw you. It's consuming and almost inexplicable. There is this massive yearning and sadness inside you that just wishes that you'd been born in a different body. I feel very lucky that I managed to come to terms with who I am at an early age, and that whatever chemicals were buzzing around my brain chilled out a bit. Transphobia is shit, because anyone whose brave enough to step out and transition has already gone through enough internally that the added external pressure is just horrible.

    * For non-UK Shipmates, Pantomimes are musical plays that we have every winter. The lead male character is always played by a female, so the romance story is played out by two women (but one playing a man), and there's always the matriarchal Dame, who is always a man in drag. There's a lot of campness and audience participation and innuendo. And we bring our kids along and embrace the gender fluidity and it's GREAT.
  • @goperryrevs Thank you.
  • DoublethinkDoublethink Purgatory Host, Acting Admin
    edited July 2019
    Thanks @goperryrevs - though we should note Eddie Izzard identifies as trans, (as does Richard O’Brien).
  • Yes, apologies. I meant born male. But all heroes and all awesome.
  • Barnabas62Barnabas62 Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host, Epiphanies Host
    eta Cross post with Barnabas62
    ... transpeople are successfully living as their gender identity without a GRC (Gender Recognition Certificate) and/or medical intervention:
    That seems to me to be a key point. It's wrong to suppose that the self-ID will always be associated with discomfort or distress.

    But where there is discomfort and distress, then reference to counselling or clinical psychotherapy seems like an obvious course of action. But always with the agreement of the person concerned. And provided that the talking therapist is experienced, non-directive and concerned only to help exploration, the outcome of such consultations is entirely a matter for the person concerned. No one outside that process should second-guess it.
  • Interesting point about Izzard, who seems to fluctuate between cross dressing and not. I had a friend like that, who seemed untroubled by feeling trans, didn't see doctors or clinics. It's a wide spectrum. I was thinking about Sam Smith (singer), who identifies as non-binary.
  • Another point is that the Equality Act (2010), is often cited as opening the door for trans people in public life. Thus, trans people already go into toilets, changing rooms, etc. When the Hampstead Women's Pool fracas was at it height, I saw various (non-trans) women say that trans women have been going there for decades. However, I don't know if the Equality Act has actually had that effect or not, or if it just happened de facto. I believe it's illegal in any case to ask for a gender certificate.
  • Colin SmithColin Smith Suspended
    edited July 2019

    For the rest of society to (have to?) treat them as the gender they claim to be.

    Society should not be making any distinction between people based on sex or gender.

    Now single sex shortlists and things like that do not contravene the principle because they are attempts to redress a historical bias towards males and will hopefully only be a temporary arrangement until parity between the sexes is reached. To make an issue out of how single-sex shortlists might address trans women/men is, frankly, laughable.

    Issues such as provision of appropriate public toilets, changing facilities, and all the rest, are practical infrastructure problems that can be addressed in the same way that society has found the will to build infrastructure which addresses the needs of disabled people.
  • It's an interesting point about "claiming to be" a certain gender, as gender identity is normally communicated via self-representation. Thus, men and women in Western culture have separate gender markers, e.g., skirts. Of course, there is considerable blurring here, thus, women wear trousers. So I don't "claim" to be male. I think non-binary people often blur the distinctions.
  • Golden KeyGolden Key Shipmate, Glory
    Thanks, goperryrevs.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    It's an interesting point about "claiming to be" a certain gender, as gender identity is normally communicated via self-representation. Thus, men and women in Western culture have separate gender markers, e.g., skirts. Of course, there is considerable blurring here, thus, women wear trousers. So I don't "claim" to be male. I think non-binary people often blur the distinctions.

    And "claiming to be" has (at least for me) the connotation that what is claimed is in fact false. "Proclaiming" may be better, no such connotation.

  • Barnabas62Barnabas62 Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host, Epiphanies Host
    edited July 2019
    I am male. I don't claim or proclaim it. It's just a fact about me.

    But suppose I was a young goperryrevs? Felt it necessary to keep my sense of identity a secret because of the feared consequences of saying it.

    Claiming, proclaiming and asserting don't really get to the heart of the matter. Which is, or at least includes, the need to be accepted socially.

    And some societies, some social groups, are a lot less accepting than others. They place limitations on what they think is normal, or acceptable.

    And I think that's the battleground. The striving for more humane, more inclusive, social norms, pitted against those who argue their group status quo because they are just more comfortable with it.

    "Don't you tell me what to think! I know what I think!"

    Well, there's change afoot. In 20 years time I doubt whether transgender will be much of an issue with most people. But if you're hurt by the judgmentalism, it matters now.
  • The seven year old I know of is moving from a school where the insistence has been on a very gendered uniform with the girls wearing dresses and long hair, the boys in shorts and blazers, hair cuts to be with short back and sides. The school she's moving to has a gender neutral uniform - either shorts or trousers for all, either long sleeved shirts or short, school tie and jumper, long hair to be tied back. This also allows for shirts to be worn like tunics over trousers to mimic shalwar kameez and still be in uniform. And that is enough to remove distress.

    According this Brighton and Hove council Trans Inclusion Toolkit (pdf)
    Having a non-gendered school uniform list would be supportive to
    non-binary pupils and students but also those who are transitioning. The majority of
    schools in Brighton & Hove already have this in place.

    I suspect that this gender neutral approach to school uniform will become more common in the future.
  • School uniform policy has been and can be challenged under human rights law, under which enforcing strictly gendered clothing has been shown to be illegal. Yet schools persist.
  • lilbuddhalilbuddha Shipmate
    edited July 2019
    ...
  • KwesiKwesi Shipmate
    Curiosity killed: The school she's moving to has a gender neutral uniform

    Odd, isn't it, that a thread about the recognition of difference ends up approving of uniformity of appearance?
  • Robert ArminRobert Armin Shipmate, Glory
    Back in the 90s I remember a colleague claiming that he knew no gay people. He did of course, but he didn't know they were gay.

    As far as I am aware, I don't know any trans people well; those I am aware of are on the edge of my social circle (not because they're trans, just because they're not close friends). Maybe I'm like that colleague of mine. As understanding and acceptance grows, maybe I'll discover I know a lot of trans people after all.
  • lilbuddhalilbuddha Shipmate
    Back in the 90s I remember a colleague claiming that he knew no gay people. He did of course, but he didn't know they were gay.

    As far as I am aware, I don't know any trans people well; those I am aware of are on the edge of my social circle (not because they're trans, just because they're not close friends). Maybe I'm like that colleague of mine. As understanding and acceptance grows, maybe I'll discover I know a lot of trans people after all.
    I don't think you will. Because trans, even with total acceptance, is not likely to be a large percentage of the population.
    A reason LGB acceptance has recently outpaced acceptance of POC/BAME is exposure.
    Most people will not have the same overlap in their social circle with trans people that they do with gay and lesbian people.

  • There are two transwomen of my generation (50s) that I know slightly; one of them I had met a couple of times without realising that she was trans. If I had to describe either of them "trans" wouldn't be the first adjective that would come to mind.

    But in my kids' generation (early 20s) I know six, two of whom I know well enough that they were regular visitors to my house before they left the area to go to university. I think that anyone below the age of 30 is likely to know someone who is trans.
  • ECraigRECraigR Castaway
    There are two transwomen of my generation (50s) that I know slightly; one of them I had met a couple of times without realising that she was trans. If I had to describe either of them "trans" wouldn't be the first adjective that would come to mind.

    But in my kids' generation (early 20s) I know six, two of whom I know well enough that they were regular visitors to my house before they left the area to go to university. I think that anyone below the age of 30 is likely to know someone who is trans.

    I’d agree. I’m in my late twenties and know several trans people. I’ve also been given to understand that non-binary and genderqueer is increasingly common.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    Most people will not have the same overlap in their social circle with trans people that they do with gay and lesbian people.

    I have two current colleagues who are trans women. Neither is a particularly close friend, but both are colleagues that I know well enough to ask after their families. There may be others, of course. Similarly, I count two trans girls in the collection of kids of local families that we are friends with, and one trans boy. His father seems to be in denial; the families of the two girls are supportive of their daughters.

    Neither my place of work nor the city in which I live are very conservative by US standards - I could imagine that in other areas, trans people might not be so open.

    Considering lilBuddha's metric, I know more gay and lesbian people than trans people., and more black people than gay people (although the last may not be accurate - I know a number of people whose sexuality I don't know, but their skin tone is rather obvious.)

    I think the smallest subgroup among my US friends and acquaintances is interracial couples. I know precisely two couples where the partners are from obviously different racial backgrounds (one white/black, one white/asian), and one white couple who have adopted black children.
  • RussRuss Deckhand, Styx
    Barnabas62 wrote: »
    We can talk about the pros and cons of self ID purely in the context of trans people without bringing wider consistency arguments to bear. Identifying with a race may have some similarities to identifying with a gender, but I'd say the special features of transition for trans people make the consistency argument pretty limited in its value in any case

    Why do you think you should get away with being inconsistent ? If inconsistency is an argument being made against self-ID you can't just wish it away.

    It may well be possible to construct a sound and well-reasoned argument why self'-ID is some sort of right when it relates to gender but not for race or age. But you haven't done so.

    For avoidance of doubt, I understand "self-ID" to mean that if I say that I'm Asian/female/under-18/whatever then you're obliged to treat me as such even in the face of evidence to the contrary.

    Opposing self-ID doesn't mean opposing sex-change treatnent under appropriate medical supervision, for example.

  • Russ wrote: »
    For avoidance of doubt, I understand "self-ID" to mean that if I say that I'm Asian/female/under-18/whatever then you're obliged to treat me as such even in the face of evidence to the contrary.

    I don't think you understand right. Age is a measure of the elapsed time between your birth and the current time. Nobody gets to self-identify their age.

    Gender, on the other hand, isn't quite so clear-cut. Once you accept that gender is different from either chromosomes or external genitalia, what "evidence to the contrary" do you think you have?
  • ECraigRECraigR Castaway
    Russ wrote: »
    For avoidance of doubt, I understand "self-ID" to mean that if I say that I'm Asian/female/under-18/whatever then you're obliged to treat me as such even in the face of evidence to the contrary.

    Opposing self-ID doesn't mean opposing sex-change treatnent under appropriate medical supervision, for example.

    Self-ID isn’t probably the best way to think about it because you’ll have to tackle issues of identity, which isn’t necessary. Rather, I find it helpful to think about self-reporting. Everybody reports on experiences that are occurring unique to themselves. Indeed, many people on this website self-report an experience of the Divine in some capacity. This reporting doesn’t admit to the same kind of challenges as self-ID would. There’s no point in challenging my reporting that I’m experiencing a certain color or emotion.

    That’s just how I think about it.

  • Barnabas62Barnabas62 Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host, Epiphanies Host
    edited July 2019
    Russ

    You didn't get it. My point was, and CK demonstrated it, that you can apply perfectly sensible constructive criticism of unqualified acceptance of self-ID without referring to dubious parallels provided by unreliable witnesses and quoted at length by anti-trans bigots. Particularly if there is medical and/or surgical care involved, make sure you consult professionals experienced in the field.
  • Robert ArminRobert Armin Shipmate, Glory
    ECraigR wrote: »
    There are two transwomen of my generation (50s) that I know slightly; one of them I had met a couple of times without realising that she was trans. If I had to describe either of them "trans" wouldn't be the first adjective that would come to mind.

    But in my kids' generation (early 20s) I know six, two of whom I know well enough that they were regular visitors to my house before they left the area to go to university. I think that anyone below the age of 30 is likely to know someone who is trans.

    I’d agree. I’m in my late twenties and know several trans people. I’ve also been given to understand that non-binary and genderqueer is increasingly common.

    That's interesting. On reflection, the trans people I know are ex-students who are probably in their 20s. Will we see a growth in the number of older people who want to trans, or is it too difficult to fight years of custom?
  • ECraigRECraigR Castaway
    @Robert Armin That’s a good question. I’ve not seen any data on it, but anecdotally it seems to have become more common for older trans people to transition as more acceptance and understanding is forthcoming. I imagine the decision is terrible, especially after a lifetime in one identity category. There have been some high-profile(ish) academics who’ve transitioned late in life. Stephanie Burt comes to mind. I think there was a major historian as well, but I can’t remember any details. I believe both have written about the decision.
  • ECraigR wrote: »
    Russ wrote: »
    For avoidance of doubt, I understand "self-ID" to mean that if I say that I'm Asian/female/under-18/whatever then you're obliged to treat me as such even in the face of evidence to the contrary.

    Opposing self-ID doesn't mean opposing sex-change treatnent under appropriate medical supervision, for example.

    Self-ID isn’t probably the best way to think about it because you’ll have to tackle issues of identity, which isn’t necessary. Rather, I find it helpful to think about self-reporting. Everybody reports on experiences that are occurring unique to themselves. Indeed, many people on this website self-report an experience of the Divine in some capacity. This reporting doesn’t admit to the same kind of challenges as self-ID would. There’s no point in challenging my reporting that I’m experiencing a certain color or emotion.

    That’s just how I think about it.

    This is interesting, as I think the idea of self ID is awash with confusion. People use it to refer to an actual declaration of one's gender, which may lead to a certificate, although this process hasn't been described by the government yet. However, it is also used about a process of identifying one's own gender, without external ratification. Trans people have been doing this for decades. But so does everyone.

    Also, I think the actual nature of gender identity is poorly understood. I don't go around proclaiming that I'm male; neither do I exhibit my genitals or ask to see other people's. I do advertise my gender via clothes, hair, and so on.

    In fact, I don't think anyone understands identity in this sense. For example, some of it is probably unconscious.
  • Marvin the MartianMarvin the Martian Admin Emeritus
    Society should not be making any distinction between people based on sex or gender.

    For sex that's patently wrong. For example, there are healthcare needs that are markedly different for each sex, not least when it comes to pregnancy and childbirth.

    But for gender, well there's the rub. I can't help but wonder how much of transgender is due to differing societal expectations and norms for men and women, and thus whether if we ever do achieve the ideal society where men and women can wear, say, or do whatever they choose the incidence of transgender will decrease.

    To put it another way, when men and women live exactly the same lives the phrase "I want to live as a man/woman" will be meaningless, and therefore will fewer people feel the need to change which one they are?
  • Society should not be making any distinction between people based on sex or gender.

    For sex that's patently wrong. For example, there are healthcare needs that are markedly different for each sex, not least when it comes to pregnancy and childbirth.

    But for gender, well there's the rub. I can't help but wonder how much of transgender is due to differing societal expectations and norms for men and women, and thus whether if we ever do achieve the ideal society where men and women can wear, say, or do whatever they choose the incidence of transgender will decrease.

    To put it another way, when men and women live exactly the same lives the phrase "I want to live as a man/woman" will be meaningless, and therefore will fewer people feel the need to change which one they are?

    Sigh. Yet again you focus on a narrow point of disagreement and ignore the bigger picture.

    Yes, there are specialist areas like healthcare and clothing where physical differences have to be addressed differently. The same could be said for age, weight, height, and countless other factors that create differences between people.

    But in terms of people's chosen roles in life, what responsibilities they choose to take, and how they choose to express themselves, society should not be making any distinction between people based on sex or gender.

    As for " if we ever do achieve the ideal society where men and women can wear, say, or do whatever they choose" I'd say that society is far more immediately achievable than you think but part of achieving it will require legislation to force social conservatives to accept it.
  • lilbuddhalilbuddha Shipmate
    To put it another way, when men and women live exactly the same lives the phrase "I want to live as a man/woman" will be meaningless, and therefore will fewer people feel the need to change which one they are?
    The three year old who tried to cut off her penis wasn’t thinking everything would be OK if she could just wear a dress.
  • Marvin the MartianMarvin the Martian Admin Emeritus
    But in terms of people's chosen roles in life, what responsibilities they choose to take, and how they choose to express themselves, society should not be making any distinction between people based on sex or gender.

    As for " if we ever do achieve the ideal society where men and women can wear, say, or do whatever they choose" I'd say that society is far more immediately achievable than you think but part of achieving it will require legislation to force social conservatives to accept it.

    If/when we get to the state that there are no societal differences between the genders whatsoever then surely that means we will have eliminated gender as a meaningful concept? And would that therefore mean that transgender - rooted in the idea that there are meaningful differences between the genders as it is - would also cease to exist?
  • lilbuddhalilbuddha Shipmate
    There are differences between Cis men and Cis women. Physiology affect psychology. There are loads of gender markers that are cultural and those should be re-evaluated.
    The problem is not that men and women are different, but the false values we assign to real differences and the false differences we assign gender.
  • Marvin the MartianMarvin the Martian Admin Emeritus
    lilbuddha wrote: »
    To put it another way, when men and women live exactly the same lives the phrase "I want to live as a man/woman" will be meaningless, and therefore will fewer people feel the need to change which one they are?
    The three year old who tried to cut off her penis wasn’t thinking everything would be OK if she could just wear a dress.

    Three years old is plenty old enough to have internalised all kinds of societal rules about who can do/be what. Obviously one can never know for sure, but I'd have been very interested in her (or anyone else's, for that matter) explanation of why she'd done that, and even more interested in the reasons underlying that explanation.

    I mean, presumably the stated reason was "because I want to be a girl not a boy". But it's the reasoning that gets to that point that's interesting to me. Why do you want that? What do you mean by it? What will it enable you to do or be that you can't do or be as a boy?
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    edited July 2019
    The stated reason might be "because I am a girl, not a boy". This is an important point; a transgender person doesn't want to be the opposite gender to what their genitalia suggest; they have a strong sense that they already are and it's their genitalia (and possibly genetics but it's not actually as simple as XX/XY) which have got it wrong.

    The reason then for wanting rid of the male member would be "I want a body which more closely reflects my inner experience of myself".
  • Yes, a common anti-trans view is that the person, whether child or adult, is fed up with one gender, and wants or chooses to be the other. Many trans people describe it as Karl did. But a common anti-gay view was that gay was a choice, I think this has mainly died out.
  • I mean, presumably the stated reason was "because I want to be a girl not a boy". But it's the reasoning that gets to that point that's interesting to me. Why do you want that? What do you mean by it? What will it enable you to do or be that you can't do or be as a boy?

    There’s no reasoning. You just know in the same way that you know you’re irritable or bored or happy or sad or lonely or angry.
  • Except those are all short term emotions that tend to go away. Now imagine a constant emotional state that doesn’t goes away, or at least takes years to go away.
  • Marvin the MartianMarvin the Martian Admin Emeritus
    I mean, presumably the stated reason was "because I want to be a girl not a boy". But it's the reasoning that gets to that point that's interesting to me. Why do you want that? What do you mean by it? What will it enable you to do or be that you can't do or be as a boy?

    There’s no reasoning. You just know in the same way that you know you’re irritable or bored or happy or sad or lonely or angry.

    My lack of understanding may well be linked to the odd way my mind works when it comes to emotions. I’ve very rarely experienced any of those emotions without being able to identify the reason behind it, and when I have it has really bothered me to the extent that I spend ages trying to identify the cause.

    I simply can’t comprehend feeling something so strongly or consistently without having a reason for feeling it. I can accept that others do feel emotions that way, but it’s so unsatisfying an answer because there’s no way to independently corroborate it.
  • RussRuss Deckhand, Styx
    Age is a measure of the elapsed time between your birth and the current time. Nobody gets to self-identify their age.

    You're judging people by externals. Isn't it obvious that what's important is people's age identity - the age that they feel they are ?
    Gender, on the other hand, isn't quite so clear-cut.
    The usage of the word is indeed not clear-cut.

    Some use "gender" as a polite way of saying "sex" - i.e. the male/female distinction - to avoid confusion with "sex" meaning sexual acts.

    Some use "gender" to mean the social roles and expectations attached to being male or female in any particular society.
    Or masculinity / femininity rather than maleness/femaleness.

    Some use "gender" as an adjective to mean "relating to maleness/femaleness".
    Once you accept that gender is different from either chromosomes or external genitalia, what "evidence to the contrary" do you think you have?
    Gender is not something unconnected with the maleness or femaleness of human bodies. Depending on your usage, it either means precisely the maleness or femaleness of the body, or refers to related characteristics.

    Having a male body is evidence of being a male person. Obviously enough.

    Behaving in typically-male ways ("you wanna make something of it ?") is evidence of being a male person.

    I guess mansplaining and manspreading (to the extent that these are real behaviours) are evidence of being a male person ?

    You can take the view that none of these constitutes conclusive evidence. In which case, what would be conclusive evidence ?

    If we view a person as a mind who has a body, (rather than as a body who has a mind). And if we accept that it can happen that a male mind inhabits a female body or vice versa. Then the sex of the body is not conclusive evidence of the gender of the person.

    But when it comes to participation in sport, or certain health issues (cervical smears ?) then the sex of the body may be more relevant than the gender of the mind.

  • Marv, I’m sure there are reasons - chemical, biological, physical, but they will probably vary from person to person. And as much as one might want to understand, it’s not easy.

    I guess it’s a bit like with depression - anyone can feel sad at some point, but depression is an inexplicable black cloud that hangs over someone permanently. Well, this is like a wrong gender cloud.

  • If/when we get to the state that there are no societal differences between the genders whatsoever then surely that means we will have eliminated gender as a meaningful concept? And would that therefore mean that transgender - rooted in the idea that there are meaningful differences between the genders as it is - would also cease to exist?

    I have no idea and I care even less. I don't care about society provided the individual's right to live their life as they see fit is respected, with the single proviso that how an individual lives their life must not negatively and materially affect any other individual's right to live their life as they wish.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    There are differences between Cis men and Cis women. Physiology affect psychology. There are loads of gender markers that are cultural and those should be re-evaluated.
    The problem is not that men and women are different, but the false values we assign to real differences and the false differences we assign gender.

    Exactly.

  • My lack of understanding may well be linked to the odd way my mind works when it comes to emotions. I’ve very rarely experienced any of those emotions without being able to identify the reason behind it, and when I have it has really bothered me to the extent that I spend ages trying to identify the cause.

    I simply can’t comprehend feeling something so strongly or consistently without having a reason for feeling it. I can accept that others do feel emotions that way, but it’s so unsatisfying an answer because there’s no way to independently corroborate it.

    That might explain why at times I've felt as though I'm debating with someone who has a limited idea of how other people feel things. It's like you're analysing why person A has fallen in love with person B and not person C when B and C seem equally desirable.
  • I have no idea and I care even less. I don't care about society provided the individual's right to live their life as they see fit is respected, with the single proviso that how an individual lives their life must not negatively and materially affect any other individual's right to live their life as they wish.

    This is not how society works, anywhere. See: outside.
  • Doc Tor wrote: »
    I have no idea and I care even less. I don't care about society provided the individual's right to live their life as they see fit is respected, with the single proviso that how an individual lives their life must not negatively and materially affect any other individual's right to live their life as they wish.

    This is not how society works, anywhere. See: outside.

    It's how I want society to work.
  • It's how I want society to work.

    Sure, fair enough. But your single proviso indicates that you've acknowledged the possibility of competing rights, while trying to deny that same possibility. Hence, that's not how society works. We have to be realistic in what we want, especially here, on this subject of great sensitivity - I've no problem with self-ID, or self-reported-ID, but there are those who do because it feels to them that it infringes their own rights. So I have to acknowledge what I think should happen is of secondary importance to the discussions between parties who are directly affected.
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