the news in the article in my previous post is definitely a step in the right direction. but is it enough? it seems to continue to define our trans-folk in terms of psychology, when evidence continues to mount that indicate it is physiological, coded for in genes even.
take for example the fact that transgender/gender identity fluidity occurs at a ratio much higher in autistic persons than for the rest of the neuro-typical population. take for example the fact that in the brains of transgender woman the size of certain brain structures are closer to what is seen in cis-women than in cis-men. functional mri also provides evidence that physiologically, not psychologically, something is going on.
homosexuality used to be considered a mental disease or defect that had its very own entry in the ‘bible of psychiatry’ until 1987, when it was removed from the dsm. altho this may have removed some of the stigma of being homosexual, and thereby afforded us queers a bit more dignity, it really didn’t do much to affect our social standing immediately, or save us from discrimination or endow us with the same rights as straight folk enjoy. but it definitely put us on the path to attaining better standing within the world at large, simply because we couldn’t be consider ‘crazy’ anymore.
of course, being gay is not the same as being transgender. there isn’t a lot in the way of necessary ‘treatment’ that homosexuals would need an insurer to cover…perhaps some therapy to deal with the ongoing rejection by friends, family and much of the straight world, esteem issues that may arise due to still being allotted only the status of second class citizens in many areas of society.
lacking research to definitively prove that transgender issues are physiological, removal from the dsm 5 completely would likely result in services being denied that are a part of the therapy needful to a trans-person. insurers overwhelmingly seem to have to be wrangled into covering the needs of those they are supposed to help. no amount of obamacare is gonna change that.
tho research is certainly providing more and more evidence for a physiological basis for being transgender, it is usually a tangent, not a focus of research. transgender issues just aren’t broadly researched. perhaps as more trans-folk enter the hallowed halls of scientific and medical research this will change. in the past, women’s medical issues were likewise discounted and sparsely researched by the predominantly male professionals. that has been changing lately. none too soon, and in some cases too late to help women who have died because male physiology had been the focus of research.
for now, we are at least happy that gender identity issues are no longer consider a disorder. but still…gender dysphoria?
my daughter has no gender dysphoria! she is a girl, despite the cruel birth defect of male genitalia. she has ‘genital dysphoria’ perhaps. changing the name from gender identity disorder to gender dysphoria still implies something mentally wrong. there is nothing mentally wrong with transgender people…there’s something physically wrong with them. and for this there is a protocol of recommended treatment.
i don’t think its straining at a gnat to point out the difference. it is less a case of tomato and tomahto than an issue of straight society’s cis-centric perception imposed upon transgender reality.