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The Science Behind Transgenders

Transgender is often seen as a disease, but in fact it is not.

Transgenders have been around for a while, and it is still debated, especially in politics, as to whether Transgenders deserve rights, such as which bathrooms they can use, or if discrimination is legal for them.

In order to fully understand what being transgender is, and what is an option for those who are transgender, we first need to understand what is defined as being transgender.

Gender Dysmorphia is a big thing for being transgender; gender therapists will oftentimes write a reference letter for their clients to start HRT (Hormone Replacement Treatment/Therapy), and surgeries if they feel like the person is transgender. Gender Dysmorphia is when a person doesn't feel comfortable with the sex they were assigned at birth, because of their gender identity; this causes conflict, and can negatively affect someone on their emotional, physical, and mental levels. Depression and anxiety are two big issues that come about in people who are transgender, and this may lead to other issues, such as eating disorders or suicide. Gender Dysmorphia may often get more prominent, and worse during/after puberty since the body is developing into their sex, and their gender is conflicting with their physical body. Transgenders will often feel discomfort about their body, and will feel like they are trapped in the wrong body (Gender Dysmorphia may also be felt by other LGBTQA+ members on the gender spectrum).

Oftentimes, people will use the words "Transgender" and "Transsexual" interchangeably, but transsexuals have done surgeries, whilst transgenders are expressing their gender identity, and have not yet undergone surgeries; transgenders who do not undergo any type of HRT or surgeries are not transsexuals, but simply transgender.

One thing to understand is that there have been several times where someone was seeing a gender therapist, and started their HRT, or even went through surgeries, and then realized this was not what they wanted; they were confusing body dysmorphia (often seen with people who have eating disorders) with gender dysmorphia, or they realized they weren't transgender, but they were on the gender spectrum somewhere. There's one big issue though; once someone goes through this, there is no going back. They can try to reverse the effects, but they will never have their old body back.

"Coming Out" is a common LGBTQA+ term, and for transgender individuals, they can come out at any age, regardless of if their dysmorphia was present from childhood, adolescence, or adult-years.

Last month (May 25, 2019), the World Health Organization removed transgender as an illness/disorder. Not conforming to gender is no longer seen as a mental disorder/illness by WHO. For a while, organizations like WHO have characterized transgenders as people who suffered from a mental illness/disorder, but the scientific discoveries that have been made in the past few years have widely disproven that theory.

Governments, both local and federal, that have gone off of WHO's mental health information have used the incorrectly-stated information as a way to criminalize transgenders, and to discriminate against them.

WHO released a new revision to their sexuality and mental health guidelines, and transgender has been moved from the mental health section to the sexual one.

The APA also changed their guidelines in 2012, replacing the transgender disorder with "Gender Dysmorphia."

~Scott

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The Science Behind Transgenders
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