Transgender Lives, Transgender Pride, Transgender Rights

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Australian, 12, Cleared for Sex Change

Posted by Henric C. Jensen on May 26, 2008

Australian, 12, Cleared for Sex Change 11:53 AM

Australian, 12, Cleared for Sex Change: Report – Yahoo! News Health & Wellness (tags: Transgender, FtM ) Henric C StarsButterfliesGold Notes – 13 seconds ago – The judge said that while the initial treatment was reversible, it needed to be seen as the first step in a process which, if continued, would allow the child to live as a male.

SYDNEY (AFP) – A 12-year-old Australian girl has been allowed to begin the first phase of a sex change after a judge decided it was in the best interests of the child, reports said Sunday.

The unnamed girl has begun hormone treatment to block puberty after the family court judge accepted an application from her mother for her to begin to reassign her gender, the Sunday Herald-Sun reported.

The judge said that while the initial treatment was reversible, it needed to be seen as the first step in a process which, if continued, would allow the child to live as a male.

“In my view, and on all the evidence, the treatment is in his (the child’s) best interests,” the judgement said.

During a hearing in December, the court heard that the 12-year-old had thought of herself as a boy since the age of four.

Several medical experts, including a psychiatrist, backed the sex-change application, as did an independent lawyer for the child and a family counsellor.

However, the child’s father could not accept that the girl had always seen herself as a boy and opposed the sex-change decision in part because of her young age, the court was told.

But the court said it needed to act quickly to prevent the onset of puberty as the girl dreaded the prospect of menstruation and developing breasts, the Sunday Herald-Sun said.

Further court applications must be made at a later stage if the child wants to take the process further and deepen her voice or develop facial hair.

Surgery to remove the womb and ovaries or build a penis cannot be done before the age of 18.

The court ruled that the 12-year-old can now apply for a new birth certificate and passport in a boy’s name.

A huge ethical row has erupted over a judge’s decision to allow a 12- year-old girl to have a sex change that will turn her into a teenage boy.

The child’s father, who is separated from her mother, is outraged at the prospect but despite his objections the taxpayer-funded sex swap has already got under way.

His daughter, who cannot be named because of her age, is already having hormone treatment in Australia in what is one of the first such cases involving a child so young.

The girl has also been given permission to apply for a new birth certificate, passport and medical card in a boy’s name.

Last night, a relative of the child claimed the girl had been ‘vindictively brainwashed’ by her mother into making the decision to have the change.

A cousin who stayed with the girl’s family for two and a half years said yesterday that after a bitter break-up the mother had used the child to ‘get back’ at the father.

‘She’s been brainwashed from an early age,’ said the cousin, who has to remain anonymous to protect the Victorian girl’s identity.

‘The mother drilled into the girl from an early age that she would have preferred a boy.’

Now the father, who considers his daughter is far too young to make a decision on her gender, is appealing to Melbourne’s legal fraternity for help in fighting the case after he ran out of money to afford representation in opposing the sex swap request.

The Victorian Family Court was told that the girl had always considered herself a boy and was at risk of self harm if she continued to develop into a woman. Hormones now being implanted under the 12-year-old’s skin every three months will stop her from developing from a child into a woman, including preventing her hips and breasts from growing.

A further court application must be lodged in coming years for testosterone treatment to deepen the girl’s voice and promote growth of facial hair and muscles. Surgery to remove her womb or ovaries or build an artificial male sex organ must wait until she is at least 18.

The court was told that the hormone therapy was reversible and would give the family ‘breathing time’ with progressive sex change treatments and operations requiring further court orders.

‘I question how reversible the treatment is,’ said the cousin. ‘There will be psychological consequences that are not reversible. ‘I don’t think the side effects have been adequately considered. How people treat her will have an effect. ‘She will never have this time in her life again.’ News of the judge’s decision to grant the sex-change treatment has sparked furious debate.

Medical ethicist Dr Nicholas Tonti-Filippini described the ruling as ‘astounding’. He added: ‘I fail to see how it can be in the interests of a young girl to undergo treatment that will change her for the rest of her life.

This is a great story!

It is good to see that there are people in the world who realize that being transsexual/transgendered is not a choice, a disease or a mental illness, but a matter of IDENTITY and of life and death.

Too many TS/TG kids have killed themselves at the onset of puberty, because they had no other way of coping with their bodies betraying them.

I wish this little brother of mine all the love, acceptance and blessings he can pick up along his journey. And big kudos to his mother for listening and standing by her son.


Posted in Legal Protection, Transman, Transsexuality | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

A Trans Man’s Transsexuality 101, Part 2

Posted by TransMan on April 10, 2008

Part Two

“transmen, like men as a whole, represent a spectrum of gender expressions. I know transmale drag queens.” – Leslie Feinberg

How did we get here and where do we go from here?

If the definition of Transsexuality is “the experience of being born within the reproductive category that is more or less opposite of what one identifies as”, and as such is pretty simple, then Transsexual experience is far from simple. It is as individual as the people living it. No two people feel the same, live the same or view the world the same. Some experiences connected to the medical part of the experience may be largely similar, but what actually goes on inside is individual. The path we take to achieve wholeness and what wholeness is to us as trans people is also individual.

For some, especially among those who transitioned prior to DSM-IV, when contact with the GLBT community was frowned upon by the medical community, it is a straight line, from the initial contact with the medical community through to a complete surgery package to traditional straight lives in Suburbia with no looking back and no contact with f.i the GLBT community. They are straight guys living straight lives. They may have transitioned while retaining their jobs, or they may have quit their job and transitioned and then gone somewhere else for work. Some have even quit their job to transition and then applied for a job in the same place when the transitioning process was complete. Some times their bosses knew, and re-hired them as is, some times not. They may marry, they may not. Some find that transitioning has changed their sexual orientation, and they find themselves with yet another “coming out” process to go through – that of identifying as Gay, Lesbian or Bisexual.

Others however arrived at their decision to transition after having lived, perhaps many years, within the GLBT community, identifying as Gays, Lesbians or Bisexuals. For many of those, this initial contact with the GLBT community has delayed their decision to transition. For yet others it might have speeded up the process of arriving at a decision to transition, especially during the last 10-15 years, when openness, tolerance and acceptance within the GLB community has increased.

There is no single way to go, nor is there any single destination for the Transsexual in terms of where they “end up” after transitioning successfully.

So, what are the nuts and bolts of transitioning?

While there is a specific “schedule” for the parts and pieces that the Medical community requires or at least see as pertinent to transitioning, the way we go about it and the time it takes for us to get where we are going is also individual.

The simple schematics looks like this:

For the trans man: Legally female -> hormones ->real life test (RLT) ->mastectomy with chest reconstruction -> hysterectomy -> genital correction surgery -> legally male.

Depending on the MD one contacts RLT may precede hormones instead of hormones preceding the RLT. Depending on personal preferences the last stage surgery may be excluded.

For the trans Woman: Legally male -> androgen suppressants and hormones -> real life test (RLT) -> chest surgery (breast augmentation) -> castration -> genital correction surgery ->legally female.

Again RLT may switch places with the hormones.

Many trans men use the initial testosterone boost to build muscle mass and speed along the redistribution of body fat so they appear more masculine faster.

Dependent on how much the hormones will cause the breast tissue to grow, one may opt not to have any breast augmentation. Some trans women may also include electrolytic epilation to remove facial and body hair as well as hair implants to restore a full head of hair. Many trans women also choose to see a voice coach to learn how to speak in a female tone of voice.

Part of the Transsexual experience for many is the fact that we have often been “read”, i.e people around us have been aware that we are Transsexual without necessarily knowing what it is they have “read”. Many Transsexuals give off a distinctly masculine/feminine energy that the environment pick up on and get confused by – they see someone they deem to be female/male, but who gives off masculine/feminine signals. “Being read” is a potentially very dangerous situation, and many Transsexuals have been beaten, raped and killed because of this. This is a major reason many Transsexuals endeavor to either exaggerate the traits “typical” for their reproductive category or  to display the traits typical for their gender to a point where they pass as their gender without any hormones or surgery. With both types fear of detection is the most overshadowing emotion.

If you think you have “read someone as being Transsexual” do not disclose this to them or to others – not to them, because it will only scare them witless even if you are supportive, and not to others, because doing so may place the Transsexual in danger of social, mental and bodily harm.

Besides, you might put yourself in a troublesome situation if you are wrong and the person you point out as Transsexual is not 😀

While transgendered people have always been part of the GLB community, as Drag Queens and Drag Kings, many DRAGS and DRABS were actually Transsexuals who were only tolerated as entertainment on Saturday Nights. That they were only allowed to be themselves as entertainment doesn’t mean that they were not Transsexuals, it only means that the GLB community exploited their need to be themselves much the same way Blacks were only allowed to portray servants and musicians on film for the longest time. This and the insistence from the Lesbian Feminist community that they were either traitors to their gender (FTM) or sexual predators (MTF) is the worst case of discrimination and oppression.

Fortunately the attitudes among the general GLB community has changed in many places, especially in metropolitan areas. Unfortunately there are still die-hard transphobes on the loose that will not accept transgendered people as part of the GLBT community and in some places the rate of violence against trans people is evenly divided between the Straight community and the GLB community.

Creative Commons

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In the News: Dallas Police Department breaks transgender barrier

Posted by TransMan on October 13, 2007

Nineteen years ago, Mike Smith attended police academy alongside Joe Grabowski.

Today, as a sergeant for the Dallas Police Department, Smith supervises Officer Deborah Grabowski.

But Joe and Deborah aren’t husband and wife, brother and sister, or father and daughter.

Deborah Grabowski, 42, is the department’s first known transgender officer, having undergone sexual reassignment surgery in May.

But Smith said that for him and others who work with Grabowski out of a substation at Love Field, little has changed.

“To me, she’s the same person as she was 19 years ago,” Smith said. “We get along the same way. I treat her just like any other police officer. “

Grabowski said she’s thankful for that.

She’s witnessed horror stories from around the country involving transgender people being fired and the like.

Although Dallas has an ordinance, passed in 2002, prohibiting discrimination based on gender identity, Grabowski says she was fearful when she came out. But with the support of the city, she began living as a woman full time in 2006.

Grabowski, an 18-year veteran of the force, sat down with Dallas Voice recently to talk more about her experience. More…

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Don’t ask me WHAT I am, ask me WHO I am.

Posted by TransMan on October 13, 2007



“Eddie, she said, “not all people are who they seem to be, and even fewer seem to be who they are, so all we can do, at any given time, is be true to ourselves, whatever the cost, because no-one else is going to do it for us.”
From “A No-Man’s Land”


Trans gender Life, regardless of where on the scale between male and female or out-side the scale we currently reside is a constant struggle for that trueness to ourselves. That is the Ultimate Core of all Trans gendered People – a desire to be exactly who we are at any given moment. For most of us the realization of that desire comes at a high cost, physically, emotionally, spiritually and socially, a cost that either leaves us broke or transformed.

Once the desire has been recognized, acknowledged and embraced, there is no way back – we either go forward or we perish. Most non-transgendered people don’t get this. That is, I think, the main reason so many non-transgendered people allow themselves to question our self-determination – they think they can shame us into “the closet”.

The fact is that there never really was any closet for any of us – with each of us there has always been something that didn’t fit the traditional gender molds. Whether it was our choice in toys and games as children or our mannerisms, vocabulary, or attitudes as teens and adults, something was always slightly “off”, and people around us could always pick up on that “off” and point to it with a question: “WHAT are you?”.

It never seemed to register with them, that a human being can never be a “What”. A “What” is a thing, an inanimate object that doesn’t feel, doesn’t hear, doesn’t see, and thus cannot BE or desire to BE.

By questioning our self-expression and reducing us to a thing, people around us robbed us of our right to an identity independent of their definitions, and demanded that we define ourselves as they defined us. When we give them OUR definitions, they disregard WHO we are and demand that we define WHAT we are.

The fact of the matter is that defining gender is irrelevant to defining a person – it might be relevant if you are breeding dogs or raising orchids. Except for the individual, gender is of no consequence whatsoever.

So, don’t ask me WHAT I am, ask me WHO I am.

Posted in What vs Who | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »