Monday, October 10, 2016

Its Society!

The reason why we are in the DSM is because of bigotry, stigma, and guilt; it is not because we are trans but because all of the stuff society dumps on us.
Why Are Some People Transgender?
This week, by request from listener Cindy in Iowa, we’ll take a look at the still-evolving science of what causes an individual to be transgender. Plus, the surprising reason why gender dysphoria is a mental disorder.
Quick and Dirty Tips
By Ellen Hendriksen, PhD, Savvy Psychologist
July 1, 2016

Needing a bathroom break is basic biology—Caitlyn even posted her video with the hashtag #everyonehastopee. But as the science of transgenderism advances, it seems that being transgender is basic biology, too.
Usually, when we ask questions along the lines of “why are people the way they are,” the answer falls somewhere between “nature” and “nurture.” Being transgender, however, seems not to be one of these things. While the research is still in its infancy, so far, the answer is overwhelmingly: nature. How do we know? While the biological basis of transgenderism is still being uncovered, there are some leads hotter than Lea T's outfits.

One recent finding is that anatomical sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation are all determined in the womb. Everything is set before birth and in sequence. Sexual anatomy happens first, in the first six weeks of development. But once anatomy is settled, there’s a big time lag—until about six months gestation—before the brain masculinizes or feminizes. At that point, if exposed to a testosterone surge, a fetal brain’s nerve cells develop in a male direction—a male gender identity. In the absence of such a surge, the brain develops in a female direction—female gender identity. And last but not least, sometime between six months and delivery, sexual orientation is set in the brain through an as-yet unknown combination of genetics, hormones, and the uterine environment.
She then writes that for identical twins…
Factor #1: Genetics. In a 2012 review, researchers scoured the world for twins in which one or both twins were transgender. In the identical twin pairs, meaning twins with exactly the same genetic information, 39% were both transgender. Of the fraternal twins, where each sibling is genetically unique, how many were both transgender? Exactly zero. The much higher likelihood of both twins being transgender if they are identical versus fraternal implies that genes play a role in determining transgenderism.  What’s more, a study in the journal Biological Psychiatry actually found a gene variant that was associated with being a trans woman like Laverne Cox or Janet Mock.
She goes on to write about Uterine Environment and Brain structures how they also affect our development.

Then she answers why we are in the DSM,
OK, so if gender identity is biological and set before birth, why is there a mental health diagnosis associated with being transgender? Doesn’t that imply that something is wrong? Well, yes and no. To truly be a disorder, a psychological issue has to cause distress, meaning significant negative emotion, or impairment, meaning it gets in the way of living your life.  The “bible” of mental health professionals, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, affectionately nicknamed DSM-5, does include Gender Dysphoria as a diagnosis. But, it makes it clear that gender identity isn’t the problem; the distress and impairment come from living with an assigned gender that’s different than one’s experienced gender. In other words, being transgender isn’t a disorder; transgender individuals know who they are, but they have to deal with an often hostile society. That’s the dysphoria.
So it is not us. It is those who come up to us and tells us we are damned and going to hell. It is those who continue to mis-gender us. It is those who seek to dehumanize by passing draconian laws.

Out dysphoria is not because of us but because of the haters.

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