Wednesday, January 17, 2018

I Think It Worked Too Well

There is a new study out about us, it is about eating and hormones…
Hormone therapy may reduce eating disorder symptoms in transgender people
University of Nottingham
By Emma Thorne
January 11, 2018

New research has shown that receiving cross-sex hormone therapy (CHT) can help to reduce the feelings of body dissatisfaction associated with eating disorders including anorexia and bulimia in transgender people.

The study was led by academics at the universities of Nottingham and Loughborough who recommend that clinicians working at eating disorder services should assess patients for gender identity issues and refer them to transgender health services to be evaluated for hormone treatment.
He [Professor Jon Arcelus, of the Institute of Mental Health, based at the University of Nottingham, and at the Nottingham Centre for Transgender Health] said: “Young transgender people may restrict their food as a way to control their puberty, stop their period or reduce the development of breasts. Eating disorder professionals should consider the gender identity of the person when assessing a person with symptoms of an eating disorders.
For some transgender people, striving to achieve a masculine or feminine body shape can influence their eating behaviours, while in the case of transgender males (assigned female at birth but who identify as male) who are not on hormone treatment some may even restrict what they eat as a way of stopping menstruation.
Evidence from one previous study showed that eating disorder symptoms were found to reduce in transgender women once they had progressed through their medical transition. However, the study was limited as it looked at a small number of participants, only at transgender women and only considered the role of surgery, not hormone therapy.
I don’t know about you but I gained a lot of weight once I went on CHT and it is a lot harder to lose. I know a lot of other trans who fight the battle of the bulge every day. I was told by my endo that I might gain weight once I went on hormones and I did.

Personally, I feel one of our problems stems from being used to eating a “man” size portions and not gaining weight, now we have to “downsize” our portions.

Also according to the current medical wisdom we are more likely to get diabetes because of the weight gain and I did [There is also a history in the family of diabetes].

Okay, those who follow my blog know one of my pet peeves is calling Cross-sex Hormone Therapy (CHT) or as it is also known as Cross-gender Hormone Therapy [which I prefer] HRT. It is not HRT, HRT dosage can be a thousand time smaller than what we take. Why is it important not to say HRT when you are being wheeled into the ER with pains in your chest? Well having a blood clot in your lungs is less likely [I said “less likely” not that it doesn’t happen on HRT] if you are on HRT than CHT and they might not look for blood clots first if you say HRT. Personally I rather give them a list of the meds that I am taking then use "Cross-gender Hormone Therapy" because there is no one dose for us, we all take different amounts and medications for our CHT.

More Bad News Heading Our Way

Under the Obama administration an executive order said that hospitals and other healthcare facilities that receive federal funding  could not prevent same-sex partners from visiting their partners. Well the current administration is about to issue an edict.
Administration to shield health workers who refuse to perform abortions or treat transgender patients
By Dan Diamond and Jennifer Haberkorn

The Trump administration is planning new protections for health workers who don't want to perform abortions, refuse to treat transgender patients based on their gender identity or provide other services for which they have moral objections.

Under a proposed rule — which has been closely guarded at HHS and is now under review by the White House — the HHS office in charge of civil rights would be empowered to further shield these workers and punish organizations that don’t allow them to express their moral objections, according to sources on and off the Hill.
Roger Severino, the Trump administration appointee who now leads the HHS civil rights office, has repeatedly stressed that strengthening conscience protections for health care workers is a top priority for his office.

The pending rule, which could be released as soon as this week, has been described to POLITICO as establishing a new “division” of the HHS civil rights office that would conduct compliance reviews, audits and other enforcement actions to ensure that health care providers are allowing workers to opt out of procedures when they have religious or moral objections.
This is what I fear.

You get in a car accident say down in Florida and the EMTs come rushing up to your car, stop when they see that you are trans, turn around and walk away saying we don’t help freaks, it is against our religion. So as you are bleeding out they find EMTs who will help you, and they rush you to the nearest hospital.  As they wheel you into the ER you hear the doctors saying “get ‘IT’ out of here this is a religious hospital."

Sound farfetched? Not if these rules goes through. This will probably override non-discrimination state laws; I see it end in a battle in the courts.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Elephant In The Closet

I remember when I first joined CT Taransadvocacy Coalition (CTAC) back around 2003, the director at the time was looking for a shelter for a trans woman who was a victim of domestic violence and the trans woman was from Massachusetts and no DV shelter would take her in, she eventually went to a New York City shelter.
Brutal murder highlights intimate partner violence in transgender community
NBC News
By John Paul Brammer
January 13, 2018

Police say Steele-Knudslien, 42, was found stabbed and beaten to death in the home she shared with her spouse, Mark Steele-Knudslien, in North Adams, Massachusetts. Her husband was charged with her murder and pled not guilty on Monday, but according to police, he had previously admitted to killing her after an argument.
"A lot of the murders that have happened over the last few years have been domestic violence or intimate partner violence," Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality told NBC News. "Unless we understand that, we can’t really help or address it."

Loree Cook-Daniels, the policy and program director at FORGE, a Milwaukee-based national transgender advocacy group, said, “We don’t have complete data ... but based on what we do have, we think up to half of the murders of trans people are murders by either partners or dates.”
One of the traits of DV is that some of the victims have low self-esteem, many also fear of having no place to turn for help and feel helpless.

The website Psych Central says,
Again, the victims often have some common characteristics. Women who are victims of domestic violence often:
  • Abuse alcohol or other substances.
  • Have been previously abused.
  • Are pregnant.
  • Are poor and have limited support.
  • Have partners who abuse alcohol or other substances.
  • Have left their abuser.
  • Have requested a restraining order against the abuser.
  • Are members of ethnic minority or immigrant groups.
  • Have traditional beliefs that women should be submissive to men.
  • Do not speak English.
Trans people are not exempt from DV and we have another common trait, we are trans and feel that no shelter will take us in.

A couple of years ago I did training for a DV shelter in the eastern part of the state because they just took in a trans person who fled spousal abuse.

It happens to us!

If you know of someone that you suspect is a victim of DV here are some things that you can do…
12 Things Everyone Can Do To Help Victims Of Domestic Violence
Odyssey Online
By Ann Liles Cox
October 26, 2015

1. Know the warning signs.
Learn the tell-tale signs that someone has an abusive partner. Maybe your friend is constantly checking in with her partner before she'll go anywhere or spend even the smallest amount of money. Maybe your co-worker's spouse always finds ways to shame him in public. There are many clues you just have to know what to look for.
3. Don't pressure them to leave.
There are so many reasons why a victim of domestic violence might stay in the relationship: fear for themselves or loved ones, lack of resources, and love for their abuser are just a few. As strange as it sounds, pressuring a victim to leave could actually make it less likely that they'll ever get out of that situation. If a victim of domestic violence has finally summoned up the courage to open up, pressuring them to leave might frighten them back even further into secrecy. Not only that, but you are becoming yet another person trying to control them, and that's the last thing they need. Refraining from judgement is one of the most important things you can do for someone in an abusive relationship.
Some of the other 12 tips are…
4. Help them develop a safety plan.
5. Find different ways to support them.
8. Look into domestic violence protection orders.
The Connecticut 24-hour Statewide, Toll Free Domestic Violence Hotline 888-774-2900 (English) or 844-831-9200 (Español).

The national toll-free phone number is 800-799-7233 (SAFE).

As trans people we are not immune so if you are or you suspect someone is being abused there are things that can be done to get the person out of the relationship safely.

Could This Help Us?

There is a lot of research out there on us, I think we are becoming the new “in” research studies. I think many researchers are now studying gender dysphoria causes and outcomes.
This Test Could Change How You Transition
Trans people need to be evaluated for BRCA genes. Here’s why. 
The Advocate
By Jacob Anderson-Minshall
January 5, 2018

A study unveiled at the 36th Annual National Society of Genetic Counselors suggests transgender individuals should be aware of their family history of breast cancer and consider getting tested for the BRCA gene mutations before they make decisions about medical interventions.

Having an elevated risk of breast or ovarian cancer could impact when trans men and women choose to start hormone treatments as well as which gender-confirming surgeries to undergo.

The lead author of several case studies, Rosalba Sacca, a genetic counselor from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, argued in a written statement, “Some healthcare providers are afraid to ask relevant medical questions of their transgender patients because they fear it may be offensive. But awareness and testing are important because they may impact their decisions.”

Mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes have been shown to increase cisgender women’s risk for breast cancer and ovarian cancer, and so doctors recommend that cis women with a strong family history of breast or ovarian cancer undergo genetic testing to see if they have the mutation. Unfortunately, those providing trans people with health care frequently avoid such conversations.
So have you had a mammogram?

Since I am over 60 I have it done every year, and because my gender is “F”, I do not pay anything and if you have a “M” on your ID you probably still get it covered by your insurance.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Down In Texas There Are A Number Of Trans People…

…running for for office. I think in the largest state in the contiguous U.S. they have the largest group of trans people running.
Out Smart Magazine
By Lourdes Zavaleta
Posted On 05 Jan 2018

Bathroom bills, national successes fuel unprecedented slate.

As a child, Jenifer Rene Pool was picked on mercilessly. She was small in stature, and relied on thick eyeglasses due to poor eyesight.

“Classmates would grab my glasses and throw them around to each other,” the Houston transgender activist recalls.

“I hate bullies. Everyone should be treated fairly,” Pool adds. “This is the premise of our national Constitution, and for the most part, the Constitution of the State of Texas. It is why I have decided to run for State representative in 2018.”

In 2016, Pool was the first openly trans person to win a party primary in Texas, becoming the Democratic nominee for a Harris County commissioner’s seat before losing in the general election. This year, she is among five openly trans Texans running for office, which is by far the most ever.
Vanessa Edwards Foster, cofounder and president of the National Transgender Advocacy Coalition (NTAC), is running as a Democrat for the Congressional District 27 seat held by U.S. representative Blake Farenthold (R-Corpus Christi), who announced his retirement last month amid allegations of sexual misconduct.

In Texas House District 94, Democrat Finnigan Jones is running for the seat held by incumbent State representative Tony Tinderholt (R-Arlington) who is rabidly anti-LGBTQ and authored legislation in 2017 that would have defined “sex” as the “physical condition of being male or female.”

Jones is the co-founder and executive director of Trans-Cendence, a Fort Worth-based nonprofit that supports and provides resources for trans people. He hopes his campaign will show trans youth that they can one day run for office, too.
In Texas House District 29, Dylan Wilde Forbis is running for the seat held by incumbent State representative Edward Thompson (R-Pearland), another bathroom-bill supporter. Forbis leads Queers with Careers and Trans Living Anthology, two LGBTQ support groups that allow queer people to share their testimonies.
Pool, meanwhile, will face attorney Adam Milasincic in the March 6 Democratic primary in Texas House District 138. The winner will take on incumbent Dwayne Bohac (R-Houston), a bathroom-bill supporter who received a grade of “F” on Equality Texas’ 2017 Legislative Scorecard. Pool says she is running in part because Bohac had no Democratic opponent in 2016.
I wish them all luck, it is going to be a hard fight to win with the way the Republicans have gerrymandered the districts in Texas to block out Democratic candidates.

I meet Vanessa Foster at Fantasia Fair a number of years ago and have been friends with her on Facebook for a number of years.

Hmm… Very Interesting…

Back when I started hormones back in 2004 as the standard back then I had to have a letter from a therapist in order to begin hormones after a three month evaluation.

So I went for my first appointment, so here I was sitting in an overstuffed leather chair and I was doing a word association test, you know that is where the therapist says “Big” and you respond with the first word that pops into your head. Well I started giggling and the therapist asked me why I was giggling and I said “This is so Freudian.”

So how did Freud view homosexuality?

Well of course this is leading into an article that I read on a Facebook newsfeed…
This advice by Freud on how to cure a gay child might surprise you
Pink News
By Joseph Patrick McCormick 
12th February 2015

Some assume positions on controversial issues such as gay “cure” therapies evolve over time. This letter from Sigmund Freud written in 1935 may debunk that.

The famed father of psychoanalysis an amazing and eloquent response to one parent’s concerns over having a gay child.

In the letter he writes that being gay ” is nothing to be ashamed of”, that it “cannot be classified as an illness” and names Plato, Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci as “several of the greatest men”, who were gay.

Continuing, he considers the case of whether he could make the child into a “normal heterosexual”, but instead of “treatment”, recommends “analysis”, to “bring him harmony, peace of mind”.
In the letter that Freud wrote he said,
Dear Mrs [Erased],
I gather from your letter that your son is a homosexual. I am most impressed by the fact that you do not mention this term yourself in your information about him. May I question you why you avoid it? Homosexuality is assuredly no advantage, but it is nothing to be ashamed of, no vice, no degradation; it cannot be classified as an illness; we consider it to be a variation of the sexual function, produced by a certain arrest of sexual development. Many highly respectable individuals of ancient and modern times have been homosexuals, several of the greatest men among them. (Plato, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, etc). It is a great injustice to persecute homosexuality as a crime – and a cruelty, too. If you do not believe me, read the books of Havelock Ellis.
Wow! He didn’t say “Lock him up!” or that “He is damned and going to hell!” he goes on to say,
By asking me if I can help, you mean, I suppose, if I can abolish homosexuality and make normal heterosexuality take its place. The answer is, in a general way we cannot promise to achieve it. In a certain number of cases we succeed in developing the blighted germs of heterosexual tendencies, which are present in every homosexual in the majority of cases it is no more possible. It is a question of the quality and the age of the individual. The result of treatment cannot be predicted.
So even Freud was against Conversion Therapy!

So maybe the New Hampshire legislature should consider Dr. Freud’s views on the effectiveness of Conversion Therapy and reconsider voting to ban it.