(Pause in my life history for a celebration!)

July 13, 2011

TODAY, JULY 12, 2011, I WAS OFFICIALLY DIAGNOSED WITH GENDER IDENTITY DISORDER!  This is a huge step in the process to hormone treatment.  The basic outline of steps goes as follows:

1) Begin therapy
2) Attend 6-12 sessions (this is dependent mainly on where you go for therapy and what your endocrinologist (the person who actually prescribes your hormones) requires or suggests)
3) Get diagnosed with Gender Identity Disorder
4) Get a letter of recommendation from your therapist that basically states that you are competent to make decisions and that they see no reason why you shouldn’t move forward in the process
5) Take the letter to your endocrinologist and consult with them about hormones and the effects and all the physical changes
6) Get a prescription for hormones

So, today I completed step 3 and I’m so excited about it!  Next week I get my letter from Dr. Parks, and then testosterone, here I come!  Although I am so stoked to have been diagnosed, Gender Identity Disorder (GID) is quite a controversial topic.  For starters, it is kind of fucked up that perfectly stable, competent, adults have to be diagnosed with a mental illness/disorder in order to achieve happiness.  And the only reason that GID even exists is because our society views cross- or multiple-gender feelings as abnormal and sick.  But where does that idea even come from? The Bible?  Older generations?  Baby boys wear blue, and girls wear pink, because…..well, just because.  There is no good reason why that should be a normalcy.  What do babies born with both or neither genitalia wear?  In our society, babies born with both genitalia often get surgery immediately after the birth to “fix” them and make them more normal.  A lot of the time, the doctors don’t even inform the parents that their baby was born with ambiguous junk, don’t even tell them that their baby is intersex.  Somebody chose our genders for us (and I mean gender, not sex.  Sex: more of a biological term usually referring to male, female, and more recently, but still rare, intersex.  Gender roles: characteristics that our society pushes on the sexes, usually masculine for males and feminine for females).  All of us.  You were born, slapped with an F or an M, and thrust into the world to survive under the assumption that whoever picked your gender for you was right.  FUCKED UP, Y’ALL.  I say let the babies grow up and decide for themselves.  It is nobody else’s business but theirs.  Gender stereotypes are completely socially constructed and therefore should be absolutely unrelated to what genitalia a person is born with.

Another controversy arises from the treatment of GID.  The treatment of hormone therapy physically changes the way a person looks to fit that persons psychological being.  This is unheard of as far as medical treatments go.  Many people believe that instead of being a mental disorder, it should be classified as a physical disorder because no part of the treatment is designed to change the psychological aspects of a person, only the physical ones.

Having to be classified with GID sucks, but it has also helped a lot of people.  Because GID is a psychological disorder, some insurance companies will pay for the therapy and hormone treatments.  So, transgendered people can get treated without having to be extremely wealthy.  The cost of therapy, plus hormones for the rest of your life, plus any surgeries that you want to have done really adds up, so having a solid diagnosis that your insurance accepts is a huge asset to a lot of people.

That being said, consider me happily mentally ill!  Also consider me adamantly against having to be considered mentally ill to pursue hormone therapy.

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