Bridge Building, Celebrations, Intersex Awareness, Intersex People, PFLAG, Relationships

PFLAG Rockford Chapter is the 2nd to become INTERSEX Inclusive.

I am excited to announce, and celebrate that  PFLAG Rockford Illinois is the second PFLAG Chapter to responsibly include intersex.   My chapter, PFLAG of Jacksonville is the first.  This happening after they made me their Director of Gender/INTERSEX Education.  It is my goal now to help other PFLAG chapters add the “I” responsibly.

While traveling to the PFLAG’s National conference in Portland, this October 2017, I met Phyllis Gallisath the Founder and President of PFLAG Rockford Chapter.   It was one of those serendipitous moments, where we discovered ourselves sitting on the plane together during my connection in Chicago.  We introduced ourselves and quickly learned that we were both headed to the same conference!  This was the beginning of a new and amazing relationship and some very long educational discussions around intersex.

During that time Phyllis opened her heart and her mind while learning the differences between LGBTQ and the special needs of us intersex people.  While also seeing that a good number of us intersex people and parents of intersex kids, are without inclusive community and supports due also identifying as LGBTQ+.

I gave my presentation at the National Conference, as a workshop, and during it, I talk about adding the “I” responsibility to LGBTQ+.   It is very important to me that the “I” is added with full responsibility and not carelessly.  My job going to PFLAG’s National conference was in honor of all us intersex people and the parents of intersex kids.  I am very excited to be doing this work!   This would not be happening without my friends and supporters from Jacksonville PFLAG Chapter, so a huge thank you to them too!

Thank you, Phylis, for making your PFLAG Chapter the second!

 

 

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Founder & President of Rockford PFLAG Chapter: Phyllis Gallisath with me at the airport traveling to the National PFLAG Conference in Oregon, 2017.

 

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PFLAG Rockford Chapter
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PFLAG Rockford Chapter
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PFLAG Rockford Chapter

You can “like” their facebook page:  PFLAG Rockford Chapter

Here is their website: PFLAG Rockford Chapter


Book Mx. Anunnaki Ray To Come Speak 


My related Blogs Regarding Intersex Inclusion: 

Intersex Inclusive PFLAG Chapters

Why I feel INTERSEX should be added to the LGBTQ rainbow

Making History! PFLAG of Jacksonville, Florida, includes INTERSEX.

Adding the “I” responsibly to LGBT

If you would like to add the “I” with responsibility, I would love to show you how, and look forward to hearing from you too:

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Bridge Building, Human Rights, Intersex Awareness, Intersex People, Relationships

Why I feel INTERSEX should be added to the LGBTQ rainbow

I feel it is now time to create more allies, create more supportive organizations, and give a way for organizations that want to become intersex inclusive direction on how they can help us end these atrocities that intersex people face.  These human rights violations are in regards to aborting healthy intersex fetuses, and ending non-consenting cosmetic corrective surgeries that are not medically necessary that are being done to intersex infants and children.  Surgeries that often fail miserably, create genitals with poor sexual sensitivity.  Surgeries that often assign us the wrong gender, are not reversible, take away our fertility, and sadly lead to repeat surgeries.  All of this leading to psychological and physical trauma throughout our lives.

Many organizations such as PFLAG are now showing they are welcoming to intersex, and many PFLAG chapters are wanting to become more inclusive to intersex.  However, adding the “I” needs to be done with great care and I personally can be contacted to make sure that this is done responsibly.

Here is my e-mail: anunnakiray@outlook.com and a page dedicated just to PFLAG chapters who are ready to become intersex inclusive: Intersex Inclusive PFLAG Chapters.

Below I will talk about the reason to add the “I” to the acronyms LGBTQ+.  Below I show why I am for this inclusion of intersex:

Reasons to add the “I”:

  1. Hida Viloria, the Executive Director of Oii-USA and Intersex Campaign for Equality shares how intersex people often identify, and how some of us will appear simply either male or female or queer:   How Intersex People Identify.  Co-authored with Dana Zzyyn.
  2. Statistics show that over 50% of us intersex people identify with a sexual orientation that appears gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, pansexual, asexual and more.  Statistics from: Demographics from Oii-Australia
  3. Statistics also show that an intersex person can have any gender identity.   Some intersex people are cis-gender (agree with birth assignment) and conform to either male or female.  Some of us are simply queer, intergender, non-binary or gender nonconforming.  There are also few of us who identify as transgender and intersex both. Statistics from: Demographics from Oii-Australia
  4. Cary Costello Ph.D. talks about how some of us who are intersex sometimes appear as transgender or identify and call ourselves transgender:   Cis Gender, Trans Gender, and Intersex  Cary also shares how homophobia is often behind genetic experts suggesting to terminate and abort healthy intersex fetuses:  On Eugenic Abortion of the Intersex.  An LGBTQ organization is going to have the sensitivity to deal with transphobia and homophobia.
  5. When a person, like myself, realizes that they are intersex instead of a disorder and that their biological sex is intersex, finding a safe space among other sexual minorities is important.  I know it was for my family, especially if we may also appear LGBTQ+.
  6. For me being a part of the LGBTQ+ groups showed me it was ok to be a sexual minority.  It allowed me to feel ok with my appearing gay and transgender.  Thus helping my self-determination and not having shame.  I feel it could give this gift to other intersex people who may also naturally appear LGBTQ+
  7. If an organization takes the time to educate themselves about intersex, it could create more safe spaces for us LGBTQ+ intersex people.  Especially those of us who also identify as transgender, non-binary, nonconforming, or queer.   I see how this happened when the “T” was added to LGB.  Although some trans appear heterosexual, some also now appear lesbian, gay or queer, just like some of us intersex people and this inclusion was very helpful to the transgender community.

Reasons to not add the “I”:

  1. The fear of intersex being mixed up as a gender identity or a sexual orientation problem.
  2. Some intersex people consider themselves a disorder of sex development still, and are happy with their intersex diagnosis and don’t feel their diagnosis has anything to do with being  LGBTQ+ or being a sexual minority.
  3. The way I see it, it could simply be a case of  Homophobia, Transphobia, Queerphobia, Intersex phobia that keeps people from wanting to add the “I”.
  4. Some intersex people are cis-gender (agree with their birth assignment) and also appear heterosexual.  They don’t have any reason to need to be affiliated with LGBTQ+, pride parades or any of it.

My solution to those who don’t want the “I” added:

To alleviate confusion, it is important to educate that intersex is about biological sex and biology, and that the biggest problems we face are the forced assignment of gender, surgically, or hormonally.  Intersex advocates, activists, and educators are trying to end our being aborted when detected in-utero and the non-consenting surgeries on infants and children.   When adding the “I” to your organization it is my hope that you will also make it a part of your effort to make this a safer world for those of us born intersex.  Last, it should be always educated that some intersex people do not appear LGBTQ+, nor need to.

Further, for those intersex people who do not even feel they are intersex, that is their right to not declare it and to embrace their diagnosis or conditions as not intersex.  However, just because they don’t feel they have a variation of intersex, nor want LGBTQI+ support, doesn’t mean that over half of the intersex community won’t benefit from it.  Which again, is a person’s right to self-determination and should always be respected.

With all this said: 

I personally feel that it is time to include the “I”, but only if it is done with great responsibility and education about ending non-consensual genital corrective surgeries on intersex infants and children.  While also guiding people to the correct organizations to support genital integrity.  Here is a list that is always necessary to make sure intersex people get the right supports and are not mixed up with transgender:

Important Organizations to Include on your website if you add Intersex to LGBTQ+:

Below are links that will ensure that parents in the USA, Australia, and other countries, are guided to informed and safe people that will reinforce the self-determination of gender,  and that “No Body is Shameful”, and can support  genital integrity:

Two PDF files you can print and distribute:

1) United Nations INTERSEX Factsheet from United Nations

2) Brief Guidelines for Intersex Allies

Links you should add to your organization’s website: 

1) Intersex Campaign for Equality  AKA Organization Intersex International, USA: Oii-USA.org  

2) Organization Intersex International: Oii-Australia

3) Organization Intersex International Network (World Wide list)

4) Intersex Support for Parents (Closed FB Group)

5) Houston Intersex Society

6) InterACT Advocates for Intersex Youth: interactadvocates.org

7) StopIGM.org (Ending intersex genital mutilation) 

8) Mx. Anunnaki Ray Gender/INTERSEX Activist, Educator, Writer and Speaker



References:  Important articles and data that shows me it is time to include intersex to LGBTQ:  

  1. The Forgotten Vowel: How Intersex Liberation Benefits the Entire LGBTQIA Community By Hida Viloria
  2. How Intersex People Identify By Hida Viloria and Dana Zzyym
  3. Cis Gender, Transgender, and Intersex By Cary Costello Ph.D.
  4. On Eugenic Abortion of the Intersex By Cary G. Costello Ph.D.
  5. THEIR TIME After generations in the shadows, the intersex rights movement has a message for the world: We aren’t disordered and we aren’t ashamed
  6. Demographics of intersex people in Australia borrowed from Oii-Australia:

Quote:  An independent 2015 survey of 272 people born with atypical sex characteristics has provided us with good statistical information for the first time. The survey was led by Dr. Tiffany Jones of the University of New England, and it was published in February 2016. It shows very diverse understandings of intersex bodies, sexes, and genders.

Graphics below borrowed from Demographics from Oii-Australia:

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Assuming that human sexual behavior is similar to Australia globally, as you can now see, the evidence from Oii-Australia shows the need.  Thus helping all infants and children be taught that they are ok being born into the bodies they are born into, regardless of how their sexual orientation, gender identity, or actual biological sex is recognized by this world when they become adults.  Adults who may or may not even need marriage equality, if we grow up to appear gay or lesbian.  Here is a personal blog that shares about how my family needs intersex inclusion: Are my Husband and I Gay Men Now? How We Became Sexual Minorities, Our Intersex Love Story.

Regardless of how us intersex people appear to this world when we grow up, the self-determination of gender and our genital integrity is our human right.

Here are Helpful LGBTQIA+ Definitions that help to explain Human Sexuality. 

If you would like guidance on adding the “I” responsibly to your organizations’ acronyms please contact me: 

 

 

 


Important blogs I have written that support adding the “I” to LGBTQ+: 

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Civil Rights, Human Rights, Intersex Activist, Intersex Awareness, Intersex Erasure, Relationships, Short Messages

Stop Erasing us.

It is always interesting to me how some people would rather end a relationship, and sometimes end a long term friendship, than try to find in their hearts room for another type of person or culture. I become raw with it all.
It doesn’t matter even if they are blood and family. It doesn’t matter of they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. The rainbow does not always agree. I assure you! I have actually had an easier time changing the hearts of fanatical Christians, than the hearts of an LGBT person that depends heavily on a male/female gender binary to justify their existence.
I lived your reality for 46 years, and it almost killed me. I refuse to agree with this delusional world, when it comes to gender. Yes, to me it is a delusion, if it erased my right to exist in this world.
It’s societies turn to change. I am done conforming to a world that literally erased my right to exist, when I was standing in front of you! No, it doesn’t take an “open mind”; it takes common sense. If your mind is closed or not doesn’t matter to me. More like, OPEN YOUR EYES! When you open your eyes, you are no longer allowed to call me a disorder! How else do you describe my existence? The male/female binary is a social construct. It is not even based on good science if it is harming innocent children born intersex to this world.
I stand my ground. I change culture now so that little kids born like me have a place in society. WAKE UP WORLD! It is time to stop erasing us, mutilating us, aborting us, devaluing us, and outcasting us!
I long for that world that celebrates our birth. www.anunnakiray.com
Sincerely, Mx. Anunnaki Ray
Bridge Building, Celebrations, Human Rights, Intersex Awareness, PFLAG

Making History! PFLAG of Jacksonville, Florida, includes INTERSEX.

Garry Bevel President, PFLAG of Jacksonville, and Frieda Saraga, Board of Directors, and Founding Board Member of PFLAG of Jacksonville, have been absolutely amazing to work with.   Both have accepted me, with open arms, and have listen with care, when I felt intersex should not be left out by the acronyms LGBT or LGBTQ.   They have not only listened with care, they have acted on it.

On January 19th, PFLAG of Jacksonville, made it possible for me to educate our city by giving  a presentation about the importance of intersex inclusion, and how to do that responsibly.

After that talk, they clearly could now see the need  in this city for the parents of intersex children, as well as us intersex adults, needing more support here.  So, today I have agreed to serve as PFLAG of Jacksonville’s  Director of Intersex and Gender Education!  

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Left to right:  Mx. Anunnaki Ray, Garry Bevel, President PFLAG of Jacksonville,  and Frieda Saraga, Board of Directors, and Founding Board Member.  The Yellow and Purple flag is the Intersex  Flag, that was created in Australia, that I have chosen to promote here in the USA too.  Please “like” on Facebook:  PFLAG of Jacksonville

 


You can read more about my position here: 

Mx. Anunnaki Ray, Director of Intersex and Gender Education for PFLAG of Jacksonville

Position Description and Purpose:   About those who are born intersex and the common language used in speaking about intersex lives. Raise awareness about intersex human rights and how those rights are often violated. Offer outreach and support for the parents of intersex babies, or children, in Jacksonville, and guide them to the appropriate organizations that will reinforce Self-Determination of gender of their intersex child.  This is to avoid misinformed, unnecessary, and non-consensual medical intervention, saving physical and emotional lives.

My Goal and Objectives:  Educate PFLAG about the importance of intersex inclusion, and how to include intersex responsibly; while including the understanding of the prevalence of intersex, and erasure of intersex experiences. Distinguish intersex (natural bodily variations, from typical male and female dyadic biological sex), sexual orientation, gender, gender identity and gender expression.  Provide workshops and training to PFLAG of Jacksonville and their local agencies.

Strategies and Evidence-Based Support:

  1. United Nations Intersex Fact Sheet: https://www.unfe.org/system/unfe-65-Intersex_Factsheet_ENGLISH.pdf)  
  2. Oii USA, and Executive Director Hida Viloria:  (http://oii-usa.org)
  3. InterACT, Advocates for Intersex Youth (http://interactadvocates.org)
  4. Additional support from, Judi Herring, M.D.

Tasks initiatives:

Promote the use of common, affirming language, in regards to descriptions of gender and  sexual minorities.  This would include:  Biological sex (Dyadic Sex and Intersex), Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Gender Expression.  Encourage shifts in medical and business cultural humility and intersex inclusion.


Memories of my PFLAG Presentation on January 19th, 2017:

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For this PFLAG presentation I also played two videos:  Judi Herring, M.D.’s, TEDx TALK:  Gender Bound, Lessons From the World Between, and Dr. Tiger Devore’s Interface Project Message “No Body is Shameful”.  Everyone also received an Intersex Fact Sheet, from the United Nations.  

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Here is my autobiography: About Mx. Anunnaki Ray

Book Mx. Anunnaki Ray To Come Speak

Blogs that guide in adding the “I” responsibly to LGBT: 

  1. Why I feel INTERSEX should be added to the LGBTQ rainbow
  2. Adding the “I” responsibly to LGBT
  3. The difference between transgender and intersex and the harm that wrong language can bring
  4. INTERSEX Erasure Hurts! Examples of Misguidance from Doctors.
  5. Doctors call us a disorder, defect, or syndrome, when we are born. We are simply INTERSEX.

Please “like” on Facebook:  PFLAG of Jacksonville

If you would like to responsibly add the “I”, I look forward to guiding you:

 

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Bridge Building, Human Rights, Human Rights Violations, Intersex Erasure, Relationships

Adding the “I” responsibly to LGBT

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A letter I shared on: Mx. Anunnaki Ray, Gender/Intersex Activist Facebook Page:

Sending a note, to simply say thank you again, for listening, and sharing this page. It is sometimes hard for people to hear about a culture different than their own, especially when daily the news can be so depressing and unimaginable.
I have actually discovered that since LGB are already marginalized, it is sometimes harder to get through to LGB people than typical people. Transgender are a lot easier, actually. I think because they are even more marginalized that LGB, and they too face drastic choices ahead of them when it comes to genital integrity and owning their true selves.
At times, I would rather give a talk to a room full of Baptists, closed minded people, than LGBT Equality workers. I don’t know if they will ever have it in their hearts, or energy to responsibility add the “I” here in my city. But until then some of us find it a blessing. Because instead of saying LGBT, those of us further outcasted and marginalized can say “LGBT and INTERSEX”. We get to say the entire word. That is pretty amazing actually! Because then questions are asked, and one can educate.
I used to think LGBTQIA+ was showing true inclusivity, and still am very proud to see that happening in some circles because it shows total inclusivity! But then I realized it could be just a careless act of adding letters, and not paying attention to the horrid atrocities we face with erasure, eugenics (abortion), and genocide (forced sterilization with non-consensual surgeries). It woke me up fast! YIKES! Please, please, do not add the “I” carelessly.
So, with all this said, since some of you are intersex allies, and messengers now, never forget to share about these atrocities, when you tell a person to add the “I”, or when you add the “I” Let this world know the horror allowed in the USA, and pretty much everywhere around this world.
This is the United Nations’ Fact Sheet, any intersex ally should study this at least once. Notice how they say “natural bodily variation”, for one, instead of “disorder”, “condition” or “syndrome”. Notice also that they validate the torture happening, with intersex genital mutilation (IGM), and ask this world to STOP. In changing speech we change culture and save bodies and lives.: The United Nations: Intersex Fact Sheet/Free & Equal
Again I thank you all,
Mx. Anunnaki Ray
www.anunnakiray.com
#StopIGM #UnitedNations #NaturalBodilyVariations #WeAreHuman #WeArePeople #HumanRights

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Intersex Activist, Intersex Awareness, Intersex People, Prejudice

Judi Herring, M.D. and I talking to the City Council, about INTERSEX in Jacksonville, Florida, regarding the LGBT Human Rights Ordinance (HRO)

A year ago today, these are the two live videos of what Judi Herring, M.D. and I shared to the City Council, regarding getting the Jacksonville, Florida, LGBT Human Rights Ordinance, back in January of 2016.

Sharing again, because this ‘LGBT HRO’ did not pass.  This was about a year ago today:  

What Judi Herring, M.D. said: 

“Clearly, all of you know that as legislators it is your responsibility to be fully informed, and in the matter of the HRO, being fully informed means being informed about the natural variations that occur in sex development. That’s something that’s a pertinent issue as one considers the language: words like ‘natural’ and ‘biologic’ and the labels that have been moved around. That includes being aware of people with intersex traits.

Just to be clear there’ve been a lot of statistics discussed. At the very least the statistics support that the incidence of people born with intersex traits is 1 in 2000, which is the same as in with redheads. But in reality, it is probably more frequent than that.”

“Obviously you know it is your responsibility to be informed. I want to offer a couple of references — one will only take 14 minutes. It’s available on YouTube. It talks about the naturally occurring variations of gender and sex development. The name is ‘Gender Bound: Lessons from the World Between.’ Fourteen minutes will allow you to have a broader perspective about the legislative downstream implications of what you’re considering.

For those who are looking toward a faith-based reference, there is a writer who released a book in 2014, I believe. The name is Megan DeFranza. Megan is an Evangelical Christian who explored the details of gender relative to her interest in becoming a theologian and discovered intersex and has a very rigorous analysis of the biblical and religious text that address that.”


What I said back in 2016 and still holds true to day, since the HRO did not pass last year: 

“I was born intersex and I am one of those very rare people that are hardly ever heard.

I am not part of the LGBT acronyms, but yet, if the HRO is not passed, it is going to affect my family.

I was born, was declared female, was raised female, and it was not my true gender, and it made me extremely sick.

I’ve been with my husband for 20 years, we’ve been together as a couple for 27. I have 3 children, we adopted our youngest, and we now appear as a gay couple. And I am being mixed up as transgender. Even prior to my reclaiming my gender, I received prejudice in the hospitals here in Jacksonville as an intersex person because of my body being what it is.

Now that I am reclaiming myself and we appear a gay couple, it becomes even more confusing to people. This is a serious situation where we receive the collateral damage of such ordinances not being passed because of people not paying attention to all the different types of human beings that are out there.

Intersex traits are as common as redheads. This is pretty serious here. That means there are going to be babies born right here in Jacksonville like me if given the right to express their true gender that are going to look queer, that are not going to fit into your binary boxes, and may appear lesbian or gay or transgender. This is a huge problem.

There is no correct bathroom for me. And not once have I ever thought of doing anything strange in the bathrooms.

The fear and ignorance I am hearing is profound, and as an intersex person I hope that each and every one of you educate yourself about gender because it’s very concerning to me what I see happening to my transgender friends, what I see happening to my gay and lesbian friends, and it is definitely a concern when I see all the harm that has been done to the intersex community because of this lack of understanding around gender.”


Today the LGBT HRO has still not passed:

It is now 2017, and after two failed attempts in trying to get the LGBT HRO passed,  the Equality groups are still trying.  Maybe this year will be the year.

You can read more here: It’s Time to Update Jacksonville’s Human Rights Ordinance and Group outlines new bid for HRO protections 


End Note:  

Here are two links to the things Judi referred to in her speech to the City Council below:

1) TEDx Talk, Gender Bound, with Judi Herring, M.D.: 

2) Here is a faith based book, by Dr. Megan DeFranza: “Sex Difference in Christian Theology: Male, Female, and Intersex in the Image of God: Male, Female, and Intersex in the Image of God”

Below is a video about this: “Lianne Simon and Dr. Megan DeFranza: Intersex Christians and the Image of God”

WE ARE HUMAN with Feather

Memes I made regarding my frustration around “LGBT” excluding “intersex”, here in Jacksonville, Florida: 

Can we all UNITED as SEXUAL MINORITIES?

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Intersex Erasure Hurts

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Gender Nonconforming, Intersex Awareness, Self-Determination, Transgender

Am I Transgender? Can an intersex person be transgender?

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Before I answer, below,  if I am transgender, or can an intersex person be transgender, let me educate about four things first.  Biological Sex,  Transgender, Gender Identity and Secondary Sex Characteristics.

BIOLOGICAL SEX: 

Biological Sex: It is typically assigned, at birth, by the “authorities”, based on the appearance of our external genitals, gonads, sex chromosomes, and sex hormones. Our gender, gender expression, and sexual orientation are often assumed by these two things; even though our gender has nothing to do with our genitals, hormones, or chromosomes. This strict division of male and female is often referred to as dyadic or  “binary”. The reality is, there are many different types of bodies out there, other than the typical male or the typical female body.

Endosex or Dyadic: Two words used to describe someone who is not born intersex. Endosex or Dyadic people are born with sex characteristics which could be categorized them either as typical female or typical male. Dyadic people can have any gender identity, sexual orientation, or gender expression.  Endosex or Dyadic is often described as the “Male/Female Binary”.

Male: Is the physiological sex that produces sperm. Most male mammals, including male humans, have one Y and one X chromosomes.

Female: Is the sex of an organism, or a part of an organism, that produces non-mobile ova (egg cells). Most female mammals, including most female humans, have two X chromosomes.

INTERSEX: Is a general term used for a variety of conditions in which a person is born with a reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of female or male. In humans, it is a variation in sex characteristics, including chromosomes, hormones, gonads, or genitals that do not allow an individual to be distinctly identified as male or female. Just like anyone else, an intersex person can have any gender, sexual orientation, or gender expression. The “rules” of the heteronormative binary, male and female, often do not work for intersex people.

The definition of TRANSGENDER: 

Transgender is an umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from what is typically associated with the sex they were assigned at birth.  Many transgender people are prescribed hormones by their doctors to change their bodies, and help them to develop secondary sexual characteristics. Some can even undergo surgery as well.  However,  not all transgender people can or will take those steps, and a transgender identity is not dependent upon medical procedures.

Further, some have tried to say intersex is under the “transgender umbrella”.  This is simply not so.  Not all intersex are assigned wrong at birth, and not all intersex people feel transgender.

GENDER IDENTITY:  

Gender Identity is one’s internal sense of being male, female, neither of these, both, or another gender(s).  Everyone has a gender identity.  It is like our personality.   For transgender people, their sex assigned at birth and  their own internal sense of gender identity are not the same. We have six common gender identities: Female, woman, and girl and male, man, and boy.  However, there are many more, such as:  Gender Queer, Gender Fluid, Inter-gender, Non-conforming gender, and more.  You can learn more about human sexuality here:  LGBTQIA+ Helpful Definitions of Human Sexuality

SECONDARY SEX CHARACTERISTICS: 

Sex hormones are very powerful things.  They create secondary sex characteristics.  Secondary sex characteristics are features that appear at sexual maturity in people and typically happens during puberty and adolescence.

In females, breasts are a manifestation of higher levels of estrogen; estrogen also widens the pelvis and increases the amount of body fat in hips, thighs, buttocks, and breasts.  In males, testosterone directly increases size and mass of muscles, vocal cords, and bones, deepening the voice, and changing the shape of the face and skeleton.  When the body converts testosterone  into DHT in the skin, it accelerates growth of androgen-responsive facial and body hair.  Needless to say it can also slow and eventually stop the growth of head hair.

In an intersex person, we do not always have typical secondary sex characteristics, due to our bodies being intersex.  Some of us can have a mixture of male and female traits and appear both male and female.  However, some intersex people can appear very typical to the expectations of male and female.

Now that you know these FOUR things I will answer: Am I Transgender? 

Here is my grand conclusion after educating myself about transgender, and talking to many trans women and trans men.

So, what happened to me?

I was born intersex in 1967, and assigned female at birth, and raised female.  You can read more about my form of intersex here in my autobiography.  As a young child I had to go to therapy due to “gender confusion”.  You see, I thought I was a boy.

I first blocked my testosterone, and took female hormones,  so that it would help my intersex body to appear more female.  I did these things to conform to appearing female from the 198o’s  to 2014.  It was not all misery appearing female.  I liked make-up, beautiful hair styles, and even the ways of feminine dress up.  This was my gender expression.  I never felt female.

All the things I was doing to live as and appear female, lead to great sickness, disability and a complete loss of my true identity.   Since October of 2014, I have stopped doing everything female.

I now allow my own androgens that are created by my adrenals and my ovaries/gonads.  I also stopped taking any supplemental female hormones. By December of 2014 I started injecting more  testosterone.  This has lead to more secondary sex characteristics known as “masculine features.”   I would call this self-determination of my true gender; since I knew, as a young child I was born male.

Unlike most transgender men, I wanted at one time to appear female.  I tried to conform to societies rules about being female.   I became very sick, disabled and it almost took my life.

Now, unlike a transgender woman, I now want to appear male, and look forward to my beard coming in and dressing and doing everything to conform to male.  The only thing I will not do is cut my hair to conform to appearing a typical male.  When I appeared female, I hated my body hair, and facial hair.  This mostly due to societal expectations of the female having to abide to social norms in appearance.  So…….

My Answer:  Do you consider yourself transgender? 

So, when I am asked if I am transgender I will say, Yes!   However, obviously not in the same way as a typical transgender person.  I can relate to both transgender women and men.

First of all, my physical body appears both male and female, due to having intersex traits and I do not want surgery.  I do not want to conform to the expectations of appearing a typical male or female.   I love my body and do not have gender dysphoria.  I love that I was able to give birth to our children, and call myself a Seahorse Dad even.  You can read about that here: I am a Seahorse Dad.

Second, I literally can relate to things BOTH trans men and trans woman go through.  I love the transgender friends I have made because of this.  I can relate to both my transgender male friends and transgender female friends, very well; and in ways most could never imagine being able to identify with both.

To explain this with labels, since the world loves labels, I now call myself an intersex, inter gender, gender nonconforming, androgynous, queer male.   Here is a related blog: Why was I diagnosed with gender dysphoria?

The world often asks:  Can an intersex person be transgender? 

Yes!

Yes, some intersex people, assigned wrong at birth call can later call themselves transgender if they were assigned the wrong gender.

They also can go through a legal transition to correct this error at birth.  It is very important to never assume one’s labels though.  Ask the person, if you have questions. I share only my experience here.  Not all intersex people are alike.

However, just because an intersex person does not agree with their birth assignment, does not always mean they relate to being transgender.  Plus, again, some intersex people are assigned correctly at birth, and this too would not make them transgender.   Therefore, like I shared above, intersex should never fall under the Transgender Umbrella, and I hope this stops.  Although this group is no longer active, here is what Intersex Society of North America says about this topic: What’s the difference between being transgender or transsexual and having an intersex condition?

I will end this blog with introducing you to one of my friends.  Here is a man who identifies as both transgender and intersex: Cary G. Costello, Ph.D., whom considers themselves an intersex transgender man.  Here is his blog you can visit where he talks about if an intersex person can be “cis gender” or not.  He has an interesting suggestion of using the term “ipso gender” to describe intersex people who do not transition:  “Cis Gender, Ipso Gender” By Cary G. Costello Ph.D.  You may also want to read this blog I wrote: Intersex VS Intergender. Do Intersex Transexuals Exist?

The above Memes are From:  Intersex Day.org

Intersex Doesn't Fall Under the Trans Umbrella

If you have questions or comment,  please feel free to contact me: 

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~.V.~