October 20th, 2018: Born Intersex: We are human!
TEDxJacksonville, at the Florida Theater.
My SHORT Autobiography:
I am a survivor of psychic mutilation, a parent of three kids, a spouse of twenty-eight years, an intersex activist and educator, a musician, an artist, and a “Gender Space Pirate” performer. I am also a person born with intersex natural bodily variations whose social activist and educational work focuses on an individual’s right to bodily autonomy, and the right to express their true gender identity. As a gender nonconforming androgynous intersex man, I have legally emancipated myself and in November of 2017 medically and legally proven to Florida court that my biological sex is intersex. September 17th, 2018, and with much persistence I received the first in Colorado with an intersex birth certificate. I create my own restitution from being assigned wrong at birth.
Through personal narrative and education, I hope to build bridges of understanding so that all people, no matter how they label themselves, may experience the wholeness that is a basic human right in a socially just world. I am highly motivated to do this work simply because I was hurt all my life by the mandates society put on me when I was assigned the wrong gender at birth. I firmly believe that the Self-Determination of our gender identity is every human being’s human right. I would love the opportunity to educate your organization: Book Mx. Anunnaki Ray To Come Speak
You can also follow me on Facebook: Transgender/Intersex Civil Rights Community & Mx. Anunnaki Ray Gender/Intersex Activist Twitter: @anunnakiray
My affiliations and accomplishments:
- Received the first Colorado, USA, Intersex Birth Certificate
- Jacksonville TEDx Speaker October 20th, 2018.
- What It’s Like: A WJCT Podcast with Anunnaki and his husband James
- I am currently participating as an Intersex Advocate for Partnership for Child Health: Jax Youth Equality.
- My husband, founding board members, are creating The Anunnaki Foundation. Our Mission: Together celebrating intersex and gender variant children, while promoting the self-determination of gender. Our Vision: Creating a just world, that gives the self-determination of gender with genital integrity. Together we promise to give a voice to all intersex and gender variant children who have no voice.
- Featured in the emerging documentary: Stories of Intersex and Faith with Megan DeFranza Ph.D., and author of: Sex Difference in Christian Theology: Male, Female, and Intersex in the Image of God
- Featured in the emerging documentary: 2bMe with Emmy Award-winning producer, Sylvia Caminer & DolGerFilms.
- My blog has now proudly reached all but eleven countries and my social media pages have gathered over 40,000+ followers together.
My Detailed Autobiography:
I was born in the late 60’s a 46, XX Intersex person. So this means my biological sex is intersex, and not one of the endosex/dyadic sexes, the male sex, or the female sex. My intersex variations are such that they assigned me female at birth, and raised female, but this was not my true gender identity. Biological Sex (Sex Characteristics), and Gender Identity are two different things. Although I was born intersex, I was born of the male gender. But, I am a gender non-conforming male. So my Gender identity does not match my biological sex, which is now legally determined by my birth state of Colorado to be intersex. Gender non-conforming refers to people who do not follow the stereotypes about gender. For the longest time, I used the word “androgynous” to describe my gender and natural appearance, and I still like it the best. I knew they had made an error calling me a girl, as young as three and four years old. The world was not ready to listen to me as an unconsenting child. So I am now the survivor of psychic mutilation.
It would take a life of much emotional, physical pain and suffering that finally lead me to the courage of reclaiming my true self at forty-six years old. Due to psychiatric and medical mismanagement, I almost died on several occasions. This including, multiple suicide attempts, iatrogenic harm from doctors, multiple miscarriages, and over eighteen surgeries. I now regret over half these surgeries, but I did not know better then, and doctors had persuaded me.
My differences lead to my being a social outcast, and many family members have not wanted anything to do with me or my family. Being an outcast has even justified rape, and being beaten. My attacker getting away with it in court even. Prejudice, and not being understood has affected my family in many ugly ways. Although many people with intersex natural bodily variations are healthy, I deal with a few health concerns that have confused and frustrated doctors.
My Medical Story
Several genetic and metabolic specialist would discover that, along with being born with intersex traits, muscle biopsy, intestinal biopsy, and genetic testing proves that I also deal with mitochondrial dysfunction (causing complex I dysfunction), oxidative phosphorylation disorder, atypical Celiac Disease (a significant gluten, and carbohydrate intolerance; with positive villus biopsy), along with a variant of Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. Which all causes a multitude of symptoms, including autonomic dysfunction, also known as dysautonomia.
These conditions, together have caused me many of the problems with adrenal involvement which involves a form of Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH). In this blog, I write about my form of intersex and how my body developed differently: Eight Names for the SAME thing: Penis, Phallus, Clitoris, Phalloclitoris, Micropenis, Microphallus, Clitoromegaly and Pseudo-penis. For this blog I collaborated with Stefanie Grübl of Vielma who graciously has created illustrations and sculptures to show genital diversity. At this time, they have often assumed my “strange ovaries” and fluctuating male hormones (androgens), to be caused by a severe case of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), and/or by differences in my adrenal function. The problem with this rationale is that my symptoms are very different than other PCOS people, and an examination of my physical body does not match that of PCOS. Never the less, Virilization has happened to my body. Since I obviously have many reasons to have a virilized body, my most recent doctor has diagnosed my intersex variation as:
Intersexuality – with hormonal variations and ICD-10- CMCode: Q56.0 Hermaphroditism, not elsewhere classified.
To top this off, I also deal with many of the problems of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). I have found much help in the autism community and among people with FASD. It ends up that ASD has proven to sometimes be a part of mitochondrial dysfunction and celiac disease. I also know a few intersex people, who have also been diagnosed with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, or personally claim to be on the autism spectrum. Some also say that FASD often goes hand and hand with intersex, transgender and gender-variant and gender-expansive people. I find these commonalities very interesting.
My Cousin was also Born Intersex.
About ten years after my birth, around 1976, another intersex child was born in our family tree. This child would have been my second cousin. They were given a boy’s name at birth, and in the first year of life assigned female by surgery, given a female named, and raised female, like me. I have been told they were very ill health, were intellectually impaired, and had been in and out of the hospital most their life, due to various illnesses. I was told they had to undergo many surgical corrections on their digestive system, bladder, and body. I was also told this person was wheelchair-bound, had one kidney fail them, received a kidney donation, and died from complications of sepsis at nineteen.
I want to find out more about this person, and see if they know what type of intersex variation my second cousin had. I would also like to learn more about their health problems. It is a mystery at this time if their medical conditions were related to mine or not, or even if they felt they were raised the right gender or not. There is much stigma and secrecy in families who deal with intersex. It is often hard to get answers. Especially after a death and dealing with survivors who have shame. Some things we may never know.
My Famly Life
I have been with my husband for over twenty-eight years now. With much medical intervention, I successfully had two biological children, who now share many of my health problems, but do not appear to have intersex traits. We adopted our youngest angel, and this was a huge blessing. We love our family very much. The biggest problem is that in our world, people think you should have a mom and a dad. In our house, this can never be. Although I am female fertile and was able to become pregnant, I never felt like a mother. I like to compare myself to a Seahorse Dad. For a seahorse, the male is the one who gives birth. Although I like to consider myself a nurturing parent, I have never felt like a mother, and my kid’s call me “Vader”, which is the German word for father. I like to consider myself a Maternal/Father, and because of this, I honor who I am by going by Mx, instead of Mr., or Mrs. Our kids have two amazing dads now, my husband going simply by “dad”.
My Work as an Educator and Activist
As of today, I have proudly educated over thirty-eight times now at Universities, Non-profit organizations, and Churches. This including being on an educational panel where I educated Harvard Medical School students with Kimberly Mascott Zieselman, the President of InterACT Advocates for Intersex Youth, and Intersex and Faith friends, Megan DeFranza Ph.D., Liane Simon, David Brukiewa’s family and several others. This educational panel happening after the medical students watched our documentary Stories of Intersex and Faith. Being a part of Christian Theologian Megan K DeFranza’s Ph.d.’s work in educating Christians about our being born in the image of God too, has been a huge part of my activist journey.
My next biggest achievement has been teaching How to add the “I” for Intersex with Responsibility to the LGBTQ+ Rainbow, for the last two PFLAG National Conventions. My first year to do this was in 2017, with Judi Herring, M.D., and again in 2019, when I presented with my husband, James Bunce.
Back in 2015, I did my first public talk about my life, with Judi Herring M.D. In this presentation, I am only 9 months into reclaiming my emotional and physical health, with the proper hormones, and eating similarly to the Ketogenic/Paleo Diet. Eating differently has helped my body create energy better, and to heal from significant health problems. Prior to 2015, I was a sickly child, chronically ill or injured teen, and as an adult, I ended up wheelchair-bound. At one time I was even sleeping sixteen hours a day and was even diagnosed with a sleep disorder similar to narcolepsy and cataplexy. So healing myself, and honoring my true gender, has been a huge awakening. Like emerging from a “coma”.
My Mentoring and Educating People
As of 2020, I have mentored and educated many people. Some without financial compensation. I have freely mentored Cynthia Mulit, a doctoral candidate, for over eighteen months. Teaching her everything I know about intersex culture and existence. She came to me because I advertised being a “bridge-builder”. I diligently helped her with her dissertation on how to help change how councilors treat intersex people. My service to her included teaching her our language, sharing my story and personal ideas, and bridge-building her with the intersex community. As of April 2020, she is now known as a Ph.D. I am glad I was a huge part of her education. It is my hope when I sacrifice my time and knowledge like this that it will be for the greater good.
For several years now I have also volunteered as the intersex advocate for Jeffrey Goldhagen, M.D. of Partnership of Childs Health, Jax Youth Equality. I am also very proud that I have captured the attention of several doctors, like Kristi Overstreet, Ph.D., that are helping me to get my message out to the world. It has saddened me greatly that I feel I have been used to educate people with credentials and not be given adequate credit or financial compensation, but I justify my work as doing this for the greater good. I have also thankfully have met many amazing friends now too. Like Tiger Devore, Ph.d., an intersex born sex psychologist, and one of the first intersex activists in the United States. As well as being mentored by Hida Viloria, another pioneer to intersex activism in the United States. I also have thankfully finally gotten to meet Temple Grandin Ph.D., and Autism Advocate and Educator, Stephen Shore, Ph.D.. Both, Temple and Stephen have personally helped my family immensely regarding our autism spectrum issues.
I am very proud of what I do to make this a better world. If you would like me to come to talk to your group or class let ‘s arrange it. Book Mx. Anunnaki Ray To Come Speak To see what other people are saying about my educational workshops and talks please see my testimonies here.
To learn more about how intersex people’s human rights are violated: United Nations’ Intersex Fact Sheet.
The photo above taken August 2015
Below is my first talk, with Dr. Judi Herring, M.D.
It was September 6th, 2015, it took much courage and bravery to tell my story to the public for the first time. I was only nine months into reclaiming, and transitioning into, my true gender in this first video. I see too many little intersex infants and children harmed. It is my hope I can help change this world with my message and my story:
Listen with Care: Build Bridges of Understanding (September 2015).
To understand Intersex and Gender better, this one is important to watch too:
Dr. Judi Herring M.D.’s TEDx Talk:
As a speaker and a survivor, you can book me to come educate:
If you would like to remain connected, Here is my Public Facebook Page:
Please be sure to also visit my Photographic Stories
My promise to this world:
Photo April 2016
Above Photos November 2016
As a speaker and a survivor, you can book me to come educate:
If you would like to give a donation, to help support my life mission,
please visit this page:
These Ten Human Rights organizations and many more all say it is time to stop irreversible, medically unnecessary cosmetic intersex surgeries on nonconsenting children and to give the self-determination of gender identity to every intersex child.
THANK YOU FOR VISITING!