Over the last year this blog has cast a seriously skeptical eye on the proliferation of highly dubious claims by people with transsexualism or transgenderism to being physically intersex rather than TS or TG.
The examination of these claims to improbable intersex conditions was prompted by things we were reading on a mailing list that was founded with the purpose of removing GID from the DSM. We were going WTF? WTF? Particularly, considering the majority of these claims were not coming from kids who might have exhibited a physical appearance that would have caused someone looking at them, even as they were dressed as boy. and say, “My that kid looks more like a girl than a boy”. Kids whose bodily build would indicate a failure to masculinize.
Instead, the bulk of these claims were coming from transsexual or transgender people who had fathered children. In some cases these people were also claiming they were physically disabled and therefore could not actually transition. Nonetheless they were real women and those of us who did not join them in these claims of intersex no matter how improbable, were not.
We are seriously concerned that this proliferation of dubious claims of intersex conditions by all these people who were and are transsexual could be used to hinder the effort many of us are exerting to remove GID from the DSM. After all we are in the unfortunate position of having to prove our sanity, something that is difficult enough for a stigmatized class of people to accomplish. One of the major charges against us is that we are delusional, detached from reality, perhaps even psychotic. Another charge is that we are compulsive liars, incapable of telling the truth or perhaps in even recognizing it due to our detachment from reality.
Several of us have been on line friends for years now. We have seen the vicious results of the frauds with many names who burned not only us but respected researchers. I speak of Kiirea Tirea and Cheryl Chase as well as their many sock puppets who taught us to question the often carefully researched claims of obscure and exceedingly rare conditions. Particularly since these very same individuals were also engaged in supporting Bailey, Blanchard, Lawrence, Zucker et.al..
Often times the same people making these bizarre claims to improbable if not impossibly contradictory forms of intersex are the very people most actively engaged in attacking transsexual and transgender people as perverts and “men in dresses”. It doesn’t take a degree in psychiatry to see the internalized transphobia on the part of these individuals.
Some of these same individuals regularly push HBS as a replacement for transsexualism and claim membership in an elite group of “classic transsexuals”.
Oddly enough even though our exposing of the dubious nature of these bizarre claims of improbable intersex conditions was not originally aimed at specific individuals beyond Tirea and Chase as well as the people on GID Reform, various people acted like the cinematic vampires who are suddenly exposed to sun light.
Zoe, a resident of New Zealand, who seems to spend some 18 hours a day on line posting her claims everywhere and anywhere has been one of these vampires, accidentally caught in the sunlight when people on this blog mainly myself and Andrea Brown pierced the cloak of self serving deceit. We were not initially focused upon her but her claims of spontaneous mid-life change of sex challenge anyone with any real knowledge of the conditions she cites. Yes it is true fish do change sex in at least certain species. And yes there is a small group of people with a hormone processing defect that delays physical masculinization until the onset of puberty.
But this does not make what Zoe states terribly credible. Zoe is transsexual and has a great deal of internalized transphobia this causes her to have to justify being transsexual with an elaborate web of contradictory claims to being intersex.
Her basic impulse is to not own up to her dishonesty but to try piling on more BS. This cause her to become more and more like Tirea and Chase. She uses someone, as an assistant, M. Italiano, MB BS (AM) Board Certified in Alternative Medicine (India) in an attempt to discredit Andrea.
Neither Andrea or myself are angry about having been operated upon as infants. Because we are just plain old fashioned women who were born with transsexualism. The person claiming we are angry because of having been mistreated as infants is confusing us with Tirea or with Chase.
But back to Italiano, Certified in Alternative Medicine means exactly nothing.
I am a stone Atheist. No god, no spiritual crap either. No crystal healing, no aroma therapy. I am as skeptical regarding all the new age “ancient wisdom of the east” as I am the pope and all other forms of religion.
Even Italiano’s description of premarin as a synthetic hormone belies a level of ignorance that is staggering. Many of the objections to premarin are not due to its being synthetic (it isn’t as it is extracted from the urine of pregnant mares) but rather due to the level of animal abuse required to obtain it when ethinyl estradiol can be synthesized in a laboratory.
There are numerous sites and books that raise serious doubts regarding almost every form of “alternative medicine”. Scientific research has failed to validate the claims of nearly every form of “alternative medicine” and label it of questionable if of any value.
http://skepdic.com/tialtmed.html is one such site Google will give numerous other sites debunking “alternative medicine”.
The fact remains that the people who currently seem to be the most upset were not the original targets. But since they seem to think the shoe fits. So be it.
February 20, 2010 at 11:30 pm
If you catch the drift of my putting up “You’re So Vain ( you probably think this song is about you) You realize that we didn’t set out to trash Zoe. She isn’t some important poobah we are trying to bring down.
Mostly we want TS removed from the DSM and having people make claims that make us all seem crazy doesn’t help us.
For what it is worth I believe transsexualism and transgenderism to be innate. That said the whole “intersex” thing has been really tainted by Chase and Tirea, the whole history of ISNA is built on lies and people seeking weird notoriety.
February 21, 2010 at 12:31 am
I want to thank you, Suzy, for this firm critique. A little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing. Speaking as a clinician, I had no idea that the intersex diagnosis was being hijacked to self serving ends by some members of our community (?). I would also like to apologize here if I have in anyway contributed to encouraging this type of behaviour. As you know I have had an abiding interest for twenty odd years since psych residency in intersex disorders and the tantalizing hints that transsexualism may have a rational cause. Thus I have followed the literature and whenever possible have shared my interest with my fellows. I was trained as a scientist and have been uncomfortable with use of such information to serve political ends. I think therefore now it seems appropriate with the GID/DSM follies impending that we should all err on the side of caution as you and Andrea have done when entertaining an intersex cause for transsexuality. I don’t think there is a Nobel waiting for medical researchers any time soon for such a venue. (Darn the luck!)
Rachel Tortolini MD, MA.
Contributor to UK Intersex Association Standards of Care.
Diplomate, Am Board of Family Medicine
aka Sarah Seton MD.
February 21, 2010 at 1:16 am
I understand, but at least you should take a look at what Zoe post online as a point of History as well.
Mostly Intersex people don’t want anything to do with GID or DSM because Intersex people are never suppose to be identified or expected to meet and trans diagnosis.
Even within the Intersex camp, their is still a fight over DSD, DSD being included with DSM 5 and the whole trans issue. Their’s even some within the intersex camp who fight to get rid of those who use the intersex community for their political and social agenda.
February 21, 2010 at 6:22 am
The fight of people with transsexualism is different from the fights many IS people seem to have.
While we are struggling to allow transkids access to treatment and change at an earlier and earlier age Intersex folks often are opposed to medical intervention although many allow once an age of agency is reached.
Mostly though the public face of the intersex movement has become associated with people who are frauds and often seem very disturbed.
February 21, 2010 at 9:43 am
Oh dear. Having avoided much of the TS scene for the last five years, I do see names I recall in your entry. Kiira and Zoe. Hmmmm. On the Internet, it is impossible to “investigate” everyone who comes your way as these two at one time did. Hard to recall now, but it seems to me that Zoe was Australian and taking some post-grad degree, or so she stated. Kiira I knew as Kiira, but I also corresponded and chatted quite often on the phone with Stephanie Alejandra Velasquez. Now both are fakes? Are you sure? To be frank, I am not all that confident in certain sources you use. but I am not going to send out investigators either…
Back to your major points, overall I find much common ground. The fake claims of being “intersexed” which were popular amongst a certain crowd at one time. Add to that with sudden discoveries (after fathering children and such) of XXY and more. Funny then and simply stupid n ow.
There is one point on which we differ, and I strongly suspect that our difference results from where we live more than how we think…
Canada and most of Europe have “single payer state health care” – universal medicare. The United States does not. In those countries that do have state medicare, SRS and all prior and following treatment is covered as GID is defined in DSM or the WHO counterpart. Years ago, when I was active in this debate, I made a point of contacting “approving types” in almost all such countries, from Sweden to France to Canada to Greece. Most replied, and all were of the opinion then that if DSM dropped GID (by whatever name) SRS and other treatment would not be covered by such medicare systems. That was common ground then.
I grant that Chilland is no longer in conbrol in France and that they have changed their approach as has Cuba. But as economies get stretched (Greece now) elected types tend to look hard at medicare costs, as those represent a major portion of the state budget. If DSM does not have GID, then on what basis could coverage of SRS continue? Indeed, that might also be asked in connection with any form of treatment. If only cosmetic, coverages would be gone, or might quickly disappear.
It thus appeared to me that continuation of the DSM designation had many good attributes for those of us, broadly speaking, outside of the USA. For those in the USA, the alleged stigma (which appears stronger in the US than on the other countries) gave you only a negative. For us, the positives outweighed the negative.
As to that stigma, I continue to see my psychiatrist even now, almost eight years after SRS. As with my TSity, I do not hide that nor do I advertise it. Granted, I am retired now and not in the job market, but I find no stigma of any sort in my community. Better education of the public seems to address that issue, for to me mental health is just as valid and neutral as physical illness.
For those reasons and others, I remain in favour of the DSM designation. Certainly some help is needed during transition an dafter, IMO. Access under state medicare needs a reason, bureaucratically speaking. DSM desgination provides that for us, with little if any negative “blowback”. Take it away and the first budget cut slices us off .
Bear in mind that for those of us outside the USA, the cost of transition, financially is $0 for almost all the necessary medical stuff. As but one example, as SRS was not done in BC, our medicare also covered my airfare to Montreal. That is a huge benefit. To put that at risk in tough economic times is now a great idea…
So, do we throw our our baby with your bathwater???
February 21, 2010 at 10:49 am
“Some of these same individuals regularly push HBS as a replacement for transsexualism and claim membership in an elite group of “classic transsexuals”.”
Oh yes, do I have experience with those types…
I tend to refer to them as the Sisters of Transsexual Purity. The Sisters have been the cause of more discrimination than perhaps any other group of TS. A self-defined and self-diagnosed elite, comprised mostly of those TS who transitioned at a very late age, were married and fathered children, and in every other manner met the criteria of Blanchard’s AGP definition. Many of them also claimed some intersexed condition from time to time, and loftily proclaimed themselves to be “true transsexuals”.
If I had a dime for every insult launched by these “Sisters” I could buy a nice new car…
And so many unthinkingly bought into this fraud – and still do.
And, as you rightly point out, after self-identifying themselves by this term, they proceeded to claim some status while denying it to those who had much the same “gender trajectory”, normally those who simply did not agree with the definition. For as with the religious debates in the Byzantium Empire, one must be all one or the other, no middle ground is permitted, no slight deviation allowed. Green or Blue, HBS or any of the ugly terms that have been applied.
Now, I do believe that there are in fact two rather different types of transsexuals. You , Suzie, are rather distinctly different in your life than Tina. I resemble Tina’s life pattern more that I do yours. To my mind, all of us are transsexuals, albeit of two different “types”. Heck, words are so ugly at times. I can easily go with “Type A” and “Type B” instead of all the other terms that have been applied and used with such ugliness to sow dissension and discrimination.
The question that this leads to is the DSM, assuming we are to be included in DSM, that is.
As the revisions are now, the broad terms certainly include both of my Types A & B. Is there a need, if such is to be, to mention the two different types, both being transsexual. Does defining or mentioning these types exclude others who do not meet the criteria but are still transsexual?
Well, to me (of no one else) the answer is yes.
Firstly, both types need SRS, even with differing gender trajectories. Both have had SRS in past years, with equally positive results. I stress that to me, both are transsexual (as if that were some golden grail that is to be prized, as perhaps I feel it to be at times).
Secondly, each type seems to require differing assistance in dealing with transition. Yes, DSM is a diagnostic tool, not a treatment guide. But the influence (based on the past experiences) is strong. A loose definition of the two types would assist in suggesting the type of treatment pattern going forward. While they may be professionals, not all of those “qualified” to treat gender issues are great thinkers. A little nudge helps….
Each of us is typed every day, by address, political leanings, consumer patterns and much more. Polls are taken that further define us into categories. One more makes little difference. Yes, it is a label but so too are all these other classifications. I watch MSNBC and hate FOX. That places me firmly in one camp, as but one example.
February 21, 2010 at 6:37 pm
I think that the big difference in the two groups is that one can hide it better, including the marriage part. Once kids come along that tends to throw a twenty year waiting period into the process unless there is a divorce.
I also think trauma can sometime cause one to re-evaluate one’s life.
Mostly thoughpeople come out as a last resort.
February 21, 2010 at 8:12 pm
Oh dear, Suzan, we agree again….
“I think that the big difference in the two groups is that one can hide it better, including the marriage part. Once kids come along that tends to throw a twenty year waiting period into the process unless there is a divorce.”
Does this not indicate a degree of control? Not until the children leave home, not until the wife is happy, not until…. Surely this control is evident in many.
“I also think trauma can sometime cause one to re-evaluate one’s life.”
Almost every AGP I have known (sorry to use that term, but you know what I mean) has started on the road to transition after some subjective great stress. Divorce, separation, loss of job, loss of children – any type of high stress situation for the person. Once the lever is pulled, the train moves out of the station, in a manner similar to obsessive-compulsive behaviour. Look to the movie “Normal”. The stress of family and an unwanted career. Then obsessive compulsion pushed more and more by opposition.
I would also observe that I have watched many such trains derail. In this cases, the derailment was not due to opposition (which only seems to increase the need) but to a simply change in circumstances – finding a woman to love. My experience is most certainly only anecdotal and thus is mentioned only in passing.
Is it possible, I then ask myself, if one could say that a precipitator is necessary to start up the transition train for older TS. Not for all, most certainly, but many? As Tina suggested, finding a cause no longer matters as much as it once did – the thought is offered for consideration only.
But if that is so, in whole or part, then can effective therapy intervene with older TS and achieve at least some success? Firstly, we have controlled emotions for a time, secondly a stressing event or life style change, and then the obsessive compulsive need. That seems to speak in terms of something that might be “treatable” in some cases”. And if that be so, then…???
I referred earlier to two types. As we know from experience, the younger types are not put off by any form of treatment. The train rolls and rolls. The older types? Perhaps, just perhaps, that train can be stopped in some circumstances. And that bespeaks a difference that should be looked at more carefully, not just tossed out if not politically correct.
We need to know more. We need to be open to ideas, those we immediately agree with and those we find abhorrent on first blush. To do that, we must be civil in discourse, open to new and differing ideas.
February 22, 2010 at 6:27 pm
“Almost every AGP I have known (sorry to use that term, but you know what I mean) has started on the road to transition after some subjective great stress. Divorce, separation, loss of job, loss of children – any type of high stress situation for the person. Once the lever is pulled, the train moves out of the station, in a manner similar to obsessive-compulsive behaviour. Look to the movie “Normal”. The stress of family and an unwanted career. Then obsessive compulsion pushed more and more by opposition.”
My first issue is the use of AGP. My second is “obsessive-compulsive”.
I do not think either term accurately describes the process followed by most “mature” transsexuals.
Again, this is an attempt to describe, define, narrow down, the “reason”. An attempt to, effectively, discredit a “transsexual narrative” by folks who claim to be “experts” (sort of like bringing in a 24 year old MBA to “reform” a workplace)
Both AGP, and obsessive-compulsive, clearly agree with a mental illness concept of transsexuality. They appear to be a veneer some “expert” has put on a life-long process to enhance their “expertise”, and discredit the experience of the “not-to-be-trusted-transsexual” (TM applied for).
The idea that “the train can be stopped in time” also seems to feed into the concept of “regret” put forth by folks who, again, are seeing what they want in the struggles some of us have early on, right after SRS, and during transition.
As Suzan has said — “After SRS I’ve never had the desire to change my sex again”.
Now, I do know one of her old friends who HAS changed her sex again. Part of this was her physical appearance, AND “the love of a good woman”. She has since changed AGAIN, and is now in a stable relationship. By the way, the “return” was not successful — leading to a rupture in the relationship, and difficult times for all.
I honestly do not think your idea of “reparative therapy” for transsexual folks works.
Using myself as an example, I must say my life prior to coming out was punctuated by a series of personal failures. AFTER getting clean and sober, I worked on issue after issue that my destructive behavior had been used to cover up. I went through some therapy, went to various workshops, and did almost everything EXCEPT work on my long standing gender issues. In other words, I worked on my “underlying issues” — my experience getting sober led to the understanding that if I changed my behavior — the issues that fed into, led to, those behaviors would emerge. At that point, I could deal with those issues.
It was only after accepting myself, looking at how my attempts to ignore, deflect, sublimate, these long standing feelings hurt me, my life, those around me, those I loved and cared for, that I was able to move forward.
These actions occurred AFTER I was over ten years clean and sober. It took that much time for me to undo much of the damage I’d done myself through years of drinking.
My decision to see if transition was the right course was not one taken lightly. It was not a case of a white-hot, pell-mell, willy-nilly, rush to transition — at least not at first.
Only after taking the step to begin hormones did I realize how comfortable I was, how different, how things began to fall into place. There were a number of “A-HA” moments. Things just felt more right than ever before. I felt as if I had “come home”.
This while I was being rejected by darn near everyone who had been in my life — including most of the people who I had used as a support system for many years.
Some folks are just too fragile, too racked with self doubt to deal with having a formerly respected “man” suddenly become a woman. It seems the prevailing idea was something along the lines of, “What does having THAT person as a friend say about ME?”.
This was true of both men and women. A very strange situation.
Even that did not affect my process.
Changing sex is a most selfish process. It takes time, a knowledge you are doing what is best for you, and the courage to continue on through. If this were just a whim, there is usually time to reconsider.
Over the years I’ve met a number of folks who did just that — for a variety of reasons. Many reasons were based on economic reality.
Most of those folks were wistful, sad. Very unhappy that they did not continue on. There were some who appeared to be leading lives of quiet desperation.
That’s not descriptive of a “successful cure”.
I would guess that those who stopped their transition because it WAS done on a whim would not become unhappy, wistful, “tranny-chaser”, hangers-on.
It’s sort of like the “cured” homosexuals who “just happen” to hang out in “gay bars”.
I really think your “analysis” is based, to a large part, on acceptance of both AGP and this “obsessive-compulsive” concept, on a concept of mental illness and disease.
Here again, the soundness, integrity, even employability, of transsexuals, WBT’s, post-ops, is in question. Can you prove this “mental illness” will not “leak” into other areas of your life? Is it safe for you to be around children? Should you be walking the streets? Are you a danger to yourself? Etc., etc., etc.
All these issues seem to be among those brought up by those who oppose us — often folks who consider themselves “christians”. As attacks against the entire LGB communities have increased, as both violence, and the potential for further violence have increased, it seems all the various “T” communities are under attack, under threat.
Even those who claim to be “deep stealth” are at risk in this new “information age”.
Spurious diagnoses, claims of AGP, AP, of transsexuality as disease do not help any of us — nor do they describe our lives, our process.
February 22, 2010 at 10:38 pm
Firstly, my apologies to Tina. I am a stranger here in a strange land. Forgetting the cardinal rule of visiting a new city, I failed to honour the gods present here. Cancel, please, the reference to AGP. I meant – to be more civil – mature transsexuals. One tends to forget the power of certain words, or initials. It shall not happen again….
As to the use of “obsessive compulsive” , I thought to be clear by stating the feeling I was describing was “similar to” that trait.
So please, let us not do battle over mere words. Let that paragraph read:
“Almost every mature transsexual I have known started on the road to transition after some subjective great stress. Divorce, separation, loss of job, loss of children – any type of high stress situation for the person. Once the lever is pulled, the train moves out of the station. It is a strong urge, one that seem s to grow in strength as time – and any opposition. Look to the movie “Normal”. The stress of family and an unwanted career. Then obsessive compulsion pushed more and more by opposition.”
Now, that is a bit calmer, I suppose. Note I did not say “all mature transsexuals”. I said almost every…I have known”. Two qualifiers – not every one and only of those that I have known. It was not stated in any more general manner then that so stated.
We travel in different circles. Your experience may well be different than mine and to explore that we can have a dialogue. I should not have used terms which you find offensive – such was not my intent nor necessary for this discussion.
The issue of inclusion into DSM has been subject to prior posts where I have stated my reasons for supporting inclusion. For myself personally, I have no bias against those with any mental illness, as I do not feel negatively about those with physical ailments. So I approach there form a different direction, with a view to sustaining the rights we currently enjoy in countries outside the United States. As to the issue you raise of trust, such is not at issue with me. We – caveat – most of us – all “edit” our life stories daily, in presenting ourselves to others we meet. I suggest that in stressful situations, we tend to do this more, not less.
Now, as to the issue of “regret”. Not so at all, and not intended. Had I wished to regret to the Drakes and others of this world, I would have clearly state so. Your interpretation is , I think, hinged on the words I used at the start of my comment. Your interpretation is far from what I wrote. Let me rephrase that. “Of those transsexuals that I have known who have “de-transtioned”, the majority have done so as a result of….”.
“As Suzan has said — “After SRS I’ve never had the desire to change my sex again””.
To which I agree. Nor have I, and many of those who have had SRS. But, and here I must be careful again, I have known five post-op suicides. I have also seen some post-op depression in those I have known. I attribute this to many factors, not the least of which is a failure of the filtering that therapy and good medical care is supposed to provide. As you know, there are two major cases underway in Australia and the UK by post-op TS
who allege that their medical care was negligent. I am unaware of the current status of those actions, but most certainly the claims are mirrored by the five that I have known.
And in that lies one of my major reasons for hoping that GI or GID is retained by DSM. I would go further. One of the jobs of a good therapist is to challenge the client. In my counseling (peer only) I tell the new arrival that they should be prepared to loose everything – job, family, friends, career – the lot. If their want is strong enough to take that risk, let’s talk. If you wish to hedge your bet, let’s look at alternatives. Few will loose all that, but most of us have lost some of that.
“I honestly do not think your idea of “reparative therapy” for transsexual folks works.”
Your personal story is interesting. My tale is of course different. After a very traumatic series of events, I have the time to contemplate. Even so, when I returned to Canada, I did nothing for one full year. That was time to work on PTSD, amongst other things. After that beast was somewhat tamed, I started.
“My decision to see if transition was the right course was not one taken lightly. It was not a case of a white-hot, pell-mell, willy-nilly, rush to transition — at least not at first.”
As it should be. And your following experience mirrors my own:
“Only after taking the step to begin hormones did I realize how comfortable I was, how different, how things began to fall into place. There were a number of “A-HA” moments. Things just felt more right than ever before. I felt as if I had “come home”.
This while I was being rejected by darn near everyone who had been in my life — including most of the people who I had used as a support system for many years”
Yes. And in this is what I referred to as the train. A growing need to go forward, perhaps knowing it is right to do. Opposition only makes one stronger, more determined. And yes, some are too fragile. My own approach was to say “There are many people in this world. I do not need those who are against me in my world”. I understood that just as I had my right to proceed, they had their right not to approve. If that arose, I took one road and they could take the other. Sure, I tried educating and it sometimes worked. But you feel when that is simply not enough, and those you leave behind. I had very few women friends who failed to come with me, but at lest half of the male friends took another road.
“Even that did not affect my process.”
Yes, again. That is the urge to which I referred.
“Changing sex is a most selfish process. It takes time, a knowledge you are doing what is best for you, and the courage to continue on through. If this were just a whim, there is usually time to reconsider.”
And again, yes.
I don’t understand your next points. Yes, economic (one reason why those with state meidcare do not have to worry…. Much….). Unhappy. Some are, some are not.
“That’s not descriptive of a “successful cure”.”
Did I suggest such a thing as a “cure”? There is none.
“Can you prove this “mental illness” will not “leak” into other areas of your life? Is it safe for you to be around children? Should you be walking the streets? Are you a danger to yourself? Etc., etc., etc.”
Yes, I can and do daily. As do people with a variety of mental illnesses. I and they prove this daily, 365…
“All these issues seem to be among those brought up by those who oppose us — often folks who consider themselves “christians”. As attacks against the entire LGB communities have increased, as both violence, and the potential for further violence have increased, it seems all the various “T” communities are under attack, under threat.”
Well, I wonder. Yes, our worst foes tend to be those who are fundamentalist Christians. Here we come to a national difference. Stats. Over 45% of Americans self-identify as “evangelical christians’. Less than 10% of Canadians do. My reality differs from yours. I have never once felt under threat or attack in the last eight years, since SRS. I do not hide, I do not advertise. But I do believe that I live in a much more tolerant country which may be the reason for our differences on this point.
“Even those who claim to be “deep stealth” are at risk in this new “information age”.”
Yes, that is true.
As to your last paragraph, see my first above…
February 23, 2010 at 5:08 am
As far as I know, there *is* no large-scale (or even small-scale) “hijacking” of anyone. There appears to have been in the past, but stories vary.
I’ve seen far too many people diagnosed with GID who should have been diagnosed with GIDNOS (using the DSM-IV-TR) or not diagnosable al all (under the ICD-10). Too many cases of M2F transitioners with 47,XXY or PAIS-1, or F2Ms with CAH. We’re talking a few percent here, not the expected tenths or hundredths of a percent.
Even Harry Benjamin noted the pattern of clinical or subclinical hypogonadism in many patients – and he was an endocrinologist remember – and the literature on F2M transition is rife with mentions of the increased rate of Adrenal Hyperplasia.
Now while the vast majority of IS people have no “gender issues”, the fact appears to be that perhaps 10% do. Moreover, the number of IS kids surgically assigned a convenient sex – one that leaves them “Gender Dysphoric” – is scary. We have to put a stop to this pernicious practice as a matter of urgency.
As for me being Transsexual rather than Intersexed – please tell the UK GRP that! I was born in the UK, but as I’m IS rather than TS, am unable to get my BC changed. The ICD-10 clearly prohibits the required diagnosis in the presence of an Intersex condition.
While some specific IS conditions will cause the PRO to re-issue a “corrected” BC, all others do not. I’m sure you know the situation there better than I do, how the UK GRA has been a disaster for IS people.
Prof A.W, Steinbeck (on the UK GRP’s list of gender specialists) is my endo, and while he’s been most helpful, willing to write a recommendation that my BC *should* be changed on the grounds that biologically I’m more F than M, he cannot state that I conform to the ICD-10 diagnosis, nor the Australian equivalent which is word-for-word the same here.
But enough about me (http://cs.anu.edu.au/~Zoe.Brain/), the important thing is to get more knowledge of IS conditions out to medical practitioners so we don’t lose someone else from an adrenal crisis, and to stop the “corrective” surgery on IS neonates. The Gender Politics and even legal issues can wait.
February 23, 2010 at 9:43 am
Zoe, is that you? Yes, I remember the “rocket scientist” bit. Well, we do seem to meet in the strangest of places. To avoid any hint of some deep and dark conspiracy, please confirm that we last exchanged views some years long ago – five plus as I – in my dotage – seem to recall.
It seems you have been totally terrible. Well, been once passed the torch by Cathy Platine as the “most hated transsexual” I can both understand and appreciate that. Hard to believe that in the past, Suzan, Tina, Cathy and I shared several forums. with several others equally as distinguished.
My dearest friend, next to Sonia that is, is IS. Not told by her parents, she did not find out until she was almost 30. A hospital search turned up the entry “F?” by her name, parents told not to tell and some minor surgery done. When she sought treatment at the age of 30, she was turned away as she was over age for IS. She then had to “become” TS to gain access to SRS, which she finally had a few years ago. As I recall that reality of mine comes close to yours.
Back on topic. ..
In telling our respective tales, forming our own individual opinions as to why those tale emerged, and living what appears to be our own reality, under what rule must any reality we find in our lives be that of all others? “Hijacking”? We see similarities and speak of those, only natural to me. Someone claims that IS should not associate with TS or TG. Why? If we tell our realities online, does that imply that we are attempting to change or challenge others and their realities? No, I think not, but that is how it is often interpreted. Our stories lie close to our bones and any cut is often assumed an attack. We tell our stories to share them, not to convince anyone. Well, maybe. Perhaps we look for a soul sister, one who can fully share our feelings for having trod the same road.
I note one here is proud to have “run you out” of a group. How sad – for that person, I mean. Perhaps the old saw – “Pride goeth before a fall” might serve as a reminder.
Now, I certain person on the Internet has been diagnosing me from afar for years. We have never met, she knows only what she assumes or thinks she sees in my writing, yet she – not professional at all – feels entitled to diagnose my being. To call me a lair, amongst many other things to nasty to repeat. To suggest my story is false as it does not mirror her reality. To wish me gone, to force me out, to silence my voice as it differs from her reality.
Of you, Zoe, Suzan stated:
“Zoe is transsexual and has a great deal of internalized transphobia this causes her to have to justify being transsexual with an elaborate web of contradictory claims to being intersex. Her basic impulse is to not own up to her dishonesty but to try piling on more BS”.
Well, from what I recall of you, that is simply not even close. As to “contradictory”, it is my belief that if you dig back into to ramblings of any of our minds, as frozen on line forever, you will indeed find contradictory claims by [almost]
each of us, for we retell our stories in different ways at differing times, and in differing moods. We individual understand the tales as we lived them, facets of the same events. But to others, yes, they may appear contradictory. Is that what this is all about? Or is the person so proud of driving you out trying to impose his reality on others?
Heck, I’m Canadian. I strive for consensus and harmony in all things. Part of the national character. We are all different – IS, TS, TG, whatever – yet in some ways the same. Do we need to drive anyone out?
February 25, 2010 at 2:06 pm
“But back to Italiano, Certified in Alternative Medicine means exactly nothing”.
Suzan, You very wrong. Try going to India and doing clinical or physical examinations of patients, writing out scripts for
lab tests such as X-Rays, EEGs, ultrasounds, bloodwork,
try to make a medical diagnosis, prognosis, issue a disability certificate, prescribe hormones, prescribe botanicals/herbs, perform acupuncture or chiropractic, or do osteopathic manipulative surgery without being certified and see if your “means exactly nothing” does not land you in jail in India.
My degree is in alternative medicine and is an MBBS in alternative medicine. I would like to describe what this entails since there seem to be many misconceptions and since there is a fine line between being uninformed and being libelous.
I was trained in traditional Western medical subjects such as physiology, anatomy, pathology, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, toxicology, forensic medicine, medical jurisprudence, preventive and social medicine.
In India, alternative medicine physicians can perform physical and clinical examinations, order any medical test (bloodwork, ultrasound, X Rays, MRI and so on), and can make any medical diagnosis on equal grounds as a physician of allopathy.
But, whereas allopathy physicians treat with surgery and drugs, alternative medicine physicians treat with botanical medicines, osteopathy, naturopathic medicines, orthomolecular medicines, acupuncture, and bioidentical hormone therapy. The latter is a particular interest of mine since I would rather use what is identical to that found in the body instead of synthetic hormones or hormones derived from horse urine (such as Premarin) in intersexed individuals. Contrary to your “animal rights” crusade,
their is a significant body of knowledge about the harm of
synthetics when compared to BIHT. Thus, although the FDA
can victimize millions with their synthetic hormones and claim that BIHT does not provide an advantage, more recent research (with a lit review) shows this as incorrect.
But back to alternative medicine in general. For every study
that claims that acupuncture, traditional osteopathy, chiropractic, plant/herbal medicines and orthomolecular medicines are questionable or doubtful, I can cite others to refute this.
While it is correct that I can not do allopathic surgery,
many intersexed individuals who have been harmed by non-consensual surgeries might think that pediatric surgeons are quacks. Likewise, they (and some trasnssexuals) might think that giving someone electric shock aversion therapy (if not frank ECT) to treat their gender “nonconformity” is quack treatment. Or what about looking at inkblots or DAP tests to see if you are actually a WBT? Or what about 7 years of on the couch traditional European psychoanalysis
for WBT and intersexed individuals? Is that quackery if it succeeds or only if it fails? Or Vioxx, Thalidomide, Avandia, or labotomies? You see, we can all paint with one paintbrush. I believe in antiobiotics and would the first to refer to a surgeonif really necessary. But really there are certified/licensed allopathic physicians, homeopathic physicians, naturopathic physicians, osteopathic physicians, and so on and there is legitimacy and quackery in each.
PS- It should be noted that I published my article first on Gendercare and then sent it to Zoe to be published since I read in the comments section of Andrea Brown’s article that one Nicky suggested that Zoe wasn’t intersexed in the comment section.
February 25, 2010 at 2:15 pm
I still consider alternative medicine to be a form of superstition based quackery.
I am also extremely dubious regarding the supposed number of infant “sex assigning surgeries” particularly those that are supposed to make girls into boys.
February 26, 2010 at 1:08 am
Dear Suzan, I think you are wrong about alternative medicine and we are not going to agree with each about that subject. But more on topic is your comment that you are “extremely dubious regarding the supposed number of infant ‘sex assigning surgeries’ particularly those that are supposed to make girls into boys.”
I would be extremely dubious about surgeries that are supposed to make girls into boys also. Are you sure that you are not referring to surgeries that are supposed to
make intersexed individuals into boys? There is quite a distinction there. Thanks, M Italiano
February 26, 2010 at 8:33 am
I do not buy all the claims of intersex.
As for boys and girls. Holes and poles are what matter. Any surgery at any age constructing a penis is very hard and requires serious actions. Hence in Suzanne Kessler’s book Lessons From the Intersex girls with clits larger than two cm get cut down and boys with micro phalluses shorter than 2.5 cm get cut down.
I am extremely doubtful of their being a wide spread number of these surgeries due to the necessity of their being done in a major medical center and due to how adult SRS did not become wide spread until the 1970s.
I choose my words carefully. So spare me the condescension.
February 26, 2010 at 12:11 pm
Dear Suzan, Why do you not buy all the claims of intersex?
What I was suggesting is that many of these “boys” with a micro phallus less than 2.5 cm may actually be intersexed having conditions such as 17 Beta, Leydig Cell hypoplasia, 5 Alpha, PAIS. I am concerned that by doubting the claims of intersex and just claiming that they are boys and not intersex will falsely “invalidate” their conditions.
Likewise those who were considered girls with “clits larger than 2 cm” may have actually been CAH intersexed individuals. While the old time surgeons used to think that chromatin negative or XY means boy and that chromatin positive or XX means girl, I am sure that you are not using it that way.
Therefore I don’t ujnderstand why you don’t “buy all the claims of intersex”. Could you explain? Also would it
really be a problem if claims of intersex were not unfounded? After all, with such sophisticated molecular techniques nowadays, someone who used to be dismissed as being a boy or a girl may now be found to have one of the conditions I mentioned. Thanks, MI
February 26, 2010 at 7:49 pm
Dear Suzan, Why do you not buy all the claims of intersex?
Because I don’t believe in UFO, Chrystal Power, Aroma Therapy, the Tooth Fairy, invisible sky daddies or the free market. I have an active bullshit detector and I am an autodidacat with a good knowledge base at my disposal.
BTW how are you doing in the hateful state of Virginia?
February 26, 2010 at 9:35 pm
well I don’t believe in all that above either-just more claims of intersex than you do I guess.
But what in the great galaxies of this universe are you talking about regarding Virginia?
February 26, 2010 at 10:59 pm
Virginia… The place you are posting from. A rather nasty and hateful spot with a loathsome governor.