Trans Woman and Gender Dysphoria

A trans woman is a person who was assigned male at birth and has a female gender identity. They may experience gender dysphoria, a distress caused by the discrepancy between their gender identity and the sex assigned to them at birth.

Many trans women have families that support their gender identity. They also form chosen families with friends and community members.

Gender identity

Gender identity is how a person perceives themselves, as male or female. During gender transition, trans women may still identify with their male or female sex at birth and maintain social ties to those communities. This can be confusing for partners, especially when the person’s pronouns change. To help, a partner can ask for the person’s preferred pronouns, and use them whenever possible.

Studies investigating relationships between cisgender individuals and transgender people have found that the experience of transition is related to relationship satisfaction. However, the specific experiences of TG people in romantic relationships have not been well explored. This article aims to address this gap by exploring the experiences of cisgender women who are in sexually and relationally intimate partnerships with FTM trans women.

Sexual orientation

Sexual orientation is an enduring emotional, romantic or sexual attraction to people of the same gender. It is different from gender identity, which is an inner concept of one’s self as male, female or a mix of both.

Transgender people can have any of the many sexual orientations, including straight, heterosexual, gay or lesbian. Those who are attracted to people of the opposite gender call themselves bisexual. Those who are attracted to both men and women, or to those who are neither, may prefer the term queer or pansexual.

New measures are being used to measure sexual orientation that are inclusive of transgender people and that capture diverse sexual identities, behaviors, and attractions. These measures will be useful for assessing sexual orientation among transgender people in future research.

Transition-related medical treatments

Providing gender-affirming care is essential to the health and well-being of transgender patients. Seemingly small interventions, such as using a patient’s preferred pronouns, validating and affirming patients, and utilizing mental health screenings, can have significant impacts on the patients’ experience with their providers.

Gender-affirming treatment includes hormone therapy, surgery, and other procedures that support a person’s gender identity. A large body of clinical research demonstrates that these treatments are lifesaving for many transgender individuals.

Gender reassignment surgery is the most serious aspect of transition-related medical treatment. It involves a surgical procedure that changes a person’s genitals to match their gender identity. It is illegal for health insurance companies to exclude coverage for these procedures, as they would for other medically necessary procedures like breast reconstruction after cancer or hormones to treat menopause symptoms.

Health care

Health care providers have a role in helping transgender people get adequate medical care. This includes identifying and addressing barriers to health care such as lack of insurance coverage, unfriendly office environments, and stigma. It is also important to report discrimination in the workplace to the appropriate authorities.

Federal and state law prohibits most private health plans from excluding medically necessary transition-related care. Despite this, many transgender people still struggle to obtain adequate health care.

For example, some transgender women avoid getting routine cancer screenings because they feel uncomfortable discussing their bodies with doctors. This can lead to missed opportunities to diagnose cancers at an early stage and save lives. To improve health outcomes, the legal landscape of nondiscrimination laws should be paired with in-practice policies that promote affirming care.

Legal rights

A recent Supreme Court decision affirmed that gender identity is protected under the Civil Rights Act. This means that employers, businesses and other places of public accommodation cannot discriminate against transgender people on the basis of their gender identity. They also cannot require people to present a form of identification that doesn’t match their gender.

In some countries, such as Australia and New Zealand, it is possible to change legal gender. Nevertheless, even in these countries, there are still many who face discrimination because of their appearance or their status as a transgender person.

This is why defending the right to legal recognition in the gender that one identifies as is so important. It is a fundamental principle of the movement to advance women’s equality.