dysphoric culture is wishing hrt came in gummies
Dysphoric culture is!
Also, yeah that would be awesome. If science can give us effective gummies for everything from vitamins to melatonin to weed, where are the HRT ones?? (kidding of course- mod knows medicine is complicated and that regulations mean that gummy hormones for trans people are probably impossible)
Anyway mod thought this was so cool that here's a 5-minute 'cute' style drawing about it:
(ID: A picture of 2 containers of hormone gummies. On the left is a blue jar labeled 'T gummy- new look!'. It is in a blueberry flavor. On the right is a thinner pink jar labeled 'E + blocker gummy'. It is in a cherry flavor. The drawing is labeled 'Coming soon to a HRT clinic near you!' in purple letters.)
I’ve been out as non-binary (they/them) for about three years now, but I still have a problem with how I dress sometimes. I still love to dress cute but every time I do people around me assume that it’s fine to use she/her, and even when I correct them I’m ignored. It’s caused me to limit myself to what has been called my more “masculine” clothes while going out. Even then people assume I go by he/him or she/her still. It’s caused me to be uncomfortable in how I dress now a lot of the times. I just want to be able to dress how I want without the comments that make me have so much gender dysphoria.
I've been thinking a lot lately about the way the trans community as a whole approaches the idea of managing gender dysphoria and I've realized that it's not really. That good?
It seems to me that there are just a handful of "pre-approved" methods for managing dysphoria like tucking, binding, packing, etc. And if those methods don't work for you, or aren't accessible to you, you're just kinda. Shit outta luck. And because there is this idea that these methods are the only way to manage dysphoria, then when it doesn't work it leaves people completely fucking devastated. They don't know what else to do, they feel like they have no other options, they're left hopeless. I don't think I need to elaborate because I'm sure we all know it goes downhill from there.
But why is it like this? There are a lot of other things you can do to manage dysphoria. Many of them are very simple and easy things. Some of them take a little more work but are more accessible. So why are these methods being ignored by the community? Is it simply ignorance or something bigger? I don't know but I think we should do something about it.
So here's my tips for ways you can try to manage your dysphoria if the usual methods didn't quite work out:
Change your hair. I am a connoisseur of funky and colorful hair, and what I have learned is that having hair that you love, like really really love, can make everything else more bearable. It gives you something to be happy about when you look in the mirror and can help distract yourself (and others) from any physical traits you want to give less attention to. Eye catching colors and styles can really make a difference.
Get a whole new wardrobe. Listen, how you dress can play a major role not only in how you look, but also how you feel. I feel like a lot of trans people are prone to wearing very specific things that are unfortunately not very flattering (sorry dysphoria hoodies but I'm lookin at you) because they think it will help lessen their dysphoria. But in the end it can just make you feel even more awkward and uncomfortable in your body. Trying out different clothes and different styles can help you figure out what actually makes you feel good in your body. Learn a little bit about fashion! Learn how to use clothes to create the illusion of the body type you want. Or just get fuckin weird with it!
Get some piercings and tattoos. This is one is not as easy as the others and may be less accessible to some people, but it can make a big difference. Decorating your body with beautiful art (or whatever the fuck you want) can make it feel a little more like you. Like putting up paintings to make your room feel a little less empty.
These are not the only options, and they still won't work for everyone. But I think it's important to just let people know that they don't have to give up. Gender dysphoria, much like gender itself, is a very individualized experience. You have to just try some shit and see what works best for you. Fuck around and find out as they say! But be safe about it of course.
Your body can either be a house or a home. If your body feels like a house right now, then it's time to renovate! Paint the walls a new color, get some new furniture, put up christmas lights, do whatever you need to do to make it feel like a home.
So I'm not too sure if any trans men follow me but I found a thing that could be of some use to you guys.
Basically, they make underwear with a built in stuffer at the front and I think that's a fantastic idea to help deal with dysphoria a bit. "Pretty cool" is what you mught be thinking but it gets better.
Fuckin' pre-packed swimming shorts.
Now, idk if there's other companies that do this but I have never seen this before so it is some news to me.
Also worth noting, I'm not trans nor am I sponsored, because why would I be, I just want to spread that there is a thing that can maybe help you with stuff.
how is gender identity a secular concept? we are talking about something that:
- has no material existence
- doesn’t show up on any medical test
- can’t be observed in the physical world
- wants something from you: wants to be acknowledged and respected, or it will torment you
-can be placated by saying the right words, ie pronouns
- hasn’t been proven, even once, to actually exist
how is it any different from a thetan in scientology? why does our government need to concern itself with it?
to everyone questioning if they’re trans/have gender dysphoria:
Here’s some advice from your local dysphoric nonbinary transmasc (Rahul, he/they pronouns!)
Just a disclaimer—just because you relate to some points doesn’t necessarily mean you’re trans, because there are some things like dissociation or body dysmorphia that can present similarly. These are just some things that if you experience might possibly be gender dysphoria!
This is also a very simplified guide for people who are new to the concept of dysphoria, so I won’t be going into detail!
Feel free to send me an ask if you need some help, or just wanna talk!
WHAT IS GENDER DYSPHORIA?
First off, you don’t need dysphoria to be trans. You don’t need to have “always known” to be trans. You don’t have to fall within the binary to be trans. You don’t need to hate your body or your genitals to be trans. You don’t have to be miserable to be trans. All you need is to be trans—that’s it.
Dysphoria is the feeling of distress or discomfort a trans person experiences when their gender identity clashes with their body or the way the world views them.
There are many types of dysphoria, but I’ll go over two—social dysphoria, and physical dysphoria! I experience both types but you don’t need both or even one of these types to be trans!
Social dysphoria is the feeling of distress or discomfort a trans person experiences when they are perceived as the wrong gender.
Here are some examples!
Pronouns—e.g, if you’re called a certain set of pronouns you might feel uncomfy, or have a nagging “wrong” feeling at the back of your mind. You might flinch, or feel like they’re talking about someone else, not you, because you know at the back of your mind (even if you haven’t realised it yet) those aren’t your pronouns.
Gendered terms—maybe your parents call you their son/daughter and it feels wrong. Or your teacher says “welcome to school, girls/boys” and you feel a weird discomfort. That’s social dysphoria.
A teacher saying something like “girls on the right, boys on the left!” and you go to the side of your AGAB (assigned gender at birth) but you feel weird about it. Like you belong on the other side, or not on any side at all.
You feel out of place in gendered spaces. In spaces meant for only one gender, the gender of your AGAB, you feel out of place. Like everyone around you shares one trait, but you don’t have that. Almost like an impostor. If you’re transmasc and in a space for women only, you might feel like you’re a predator. Like you’re invading a space not meant for you.
Disclaimer: the example above can also apply to gnc people and cis LGB people to some extent but it is a common example of social dysphoria in trans people too.
After years of experiencing dysphoria, you might get so used to it you don’t even notice it anymore. After all, a fish doesn’t notice the water around it. I’ll go more into detail about this later in the post.
Physical dysphoria is the feeling of distress or discomfort a trans person experiences because of the clash between their birth sex and/or appearance and their gender identity.
Let’s go into some examples!
Disclaimer: relating to some of these doesn’t necessarily mean you have dysphoria, some of these symptoms are similar to how kids feel going through puberty, body dysmorphia, and some other stuff.
Disliking gendered features of your body—maybe you’ve always hated your chest, maybe it’s too flat or maybe it’s not flat enough. Or going to the bathroom always felt weird because you would look down and it felt jarring. Made you blink, is that really what’s there? Is that really you? Maybe looking in the mirror felt like you were looking at yourself through an exaggerated filter. A caricature. Your hips aren’t really like that, are they?
Hiding gendered features—maybe you always went outside with the baggiest hoodie you could find. Always looked for the baggy shirts to hide the outline of your figure that just looked wrong.
Looking in the mirror feels like you’re looking at someone else—maybe the person in the mirror never looked like you. Maybe your chest was different and your figure’s lines are wrong and your jawline is way different. But the mirror shows someone else.
HOW DYSPHORIA IS SOMETHING YOU GET USED TO
After years of experiencing dysphoria, you might get so used to it you don’t even notice it anymore. After all, a fish doesn’t notice the water around it. You might not even know you have dysphoria because you’re so used to it.
Sometimes dysphoria is just apathy. You look at your body and think oh. That’s my body. Okay, I guess. Guess I’m that gender. Guess I have these features. I guess.
Dysphoria can manifest as depression. You feel depressed for a reason you can’t really explain. Adolescent depression is common in trans people during teenage years because of dysphoria.
Maybe you feel like you’re walking through water everyday, that to just keep going is an effort.
What Does Dysphoria Feel Like: Trans People’s Experiences
Trans People Talk About Dysphoria
The NHS On Gender Dysphoria
What Does Dysphoria Feel Like? By Riley Black
Firsthand Account Of Gender Dysphoria
Twitter thread on how dysphoria manifests as adolescent depression
How Dysphoria Manifests As Depersonalisation
8 Indirect Symptoms Of Dysphoria
Volume 3 of Nature Held Me Close is now available.
Read and download it here.
Thank you again to everyone who shared their work!
I love the idea that our transness is not defined by DYSPHORIA but by EUPHORIA. its not hating your body, its loving being called your new name. its not feeling uncomfortable in certain clothing, its feeling BOSS in clothing you never felt you could wear. Its not pain, its joy.
im sad all the time and it's 95% dysphoria. my mother says she wants to help me but refuses to acknowledge im a boy, so, fuck that i guess
Lisa Littman has just published a study on destransitioners. Here's a graph detailing the main reasons why participants chose to detransistion.
Full publication is available here
hello violet. may i ask why you detransitioned? the general consensus according to doctors is that transitioning is the best treatment for gender dysphoria. i'm really curious about your experience because i experience dysphoria as well, and i would like some guidance.
Hello anon! Yes, you may ask! Fair warning, I’m really gonna get into it, because I think it’s important that I am honest and in-depth here.
In regards to the consensus of doctors, you said it right in your question: the "best treatment" for gender dysphoria, keyword best. When you actually take a look at the science, doctors really don't know how to treat gender dysphoria. Transition seems to work for some people, yes. The author of this article (I know he writes for The Federalist. that doesn't mean this article is irrelevant!) looked at the studies often cited for supporting transition as a cure for dysphoria, and found that most of the studies were flawed and don't exactly support the idea of transition being 'the best treatment'. Again, there is evidence that transition helped some people, but overall, the data is pretty inconclusive. Many of the studies were self-selected and had a small sample size. It seems that doctors just don't really know how else to treat dysphoria -- transition is the only known treatment at this point, so only by default is it the ‘best’.
This was something I discovered in the midst of my transition when I was having doubts. I honestly had doubts the entire time I was transitioning, but I ignored most of it, because I was told it was ‘normal’ and that my doubts were actually more evidence that I was “really trans” and was just “internalized transphobia”. I thought this was odd but I was really invested in transition and wanted it to work so badly that I just ignored it as best I could and forged ahead.
I wish I had listened to my doubts then. They only grew and continued to resurface from time to time. Sometimes the cognitive dissonance I felt was truly agonizing and I would be alternately panicky and depressed for days. Again, the online trans communities I was in said this was normal. I tried, again, to just deal with it. Though all the while my dysphoria was curiously getting worse and worse. But by all accounts I was trans. You can’t say that I wasn’t. My experience was exactly like every other trans man I had seen online and met in person. The same shit. I hadn’t just jumped into transition unthinkingly. I had been in therapy for several years and had discussed transition at length with my therapist. I had researched and researched and researched and watched videos and thought about it and thought about it and thought about it and it really seemed like transition was my only option for future happiness, based on everything I saw and read. Watching video diaries from trans men, it was like they had copy + pasted thoughts from my head into their videos. All the memes and things -- I related. More and more evidence that this was my best bet. I would have been nuts to not transition at that point (at least, that’s what I thought). So anyone who wants to claim that I “wasn’t really trans”, was “a confused cis person”, whatever, can frankly fucking shove it.
So why was it, well, not working? At the beginning, pre-T, I had dysphoria over just a few things, like my voice, my curves, and occasionally my breasts, but not all the time. I had come to see testosterone as The Holy Grail that would save me from my self-loathing. When I got on it, the first few months were alright, then my dysphoria took a steep upturn; that is, it got much worse. Things that hadn’t bothered me before were bothering me a lot now. As the months went on, I went from feeling fairly neutral to the idea of top surgery, to leaning toward it, to feeling like I absolutely needed it immediately. It made me extremely depressed to even look at my breasts, to notice them in my peripheral vision. That was new. Then I started having thoughts about bottom surgery, which I had never had before. Dysphoria about my genitals was brand new and it disturbed me. I was concerned that my dysphoria was growing, and my hatred toward my body was becoming stronger and stronger. The more my body masculinized, I was simultaneously elated and disgusted. It was very confusing and unsettling. I loved that I looked more male and that I was starting to pass, but I became ever more disgusted with my femaleness, and the things I perceived as ‘female parts’ of my body.
I wondered, then, if the dysphoria would ever end. I thought of the accounts of other trans men that I saw and had followed along; I remembered how a lot of them started with a little bit of dysphoria that grew and grew the further along they got in transition. A lot of them had felt hesitant about top surgery, then ended up getting it. A lot of them said they never wanted bottom surgery, then ended up getting it. It started to look more and more to me like a slippery slope, like celebrities who get a nose job and then cheek implants and then chin fillers and then you get Kim Kardashian and Farrah Abrahams and the like. People who keep altering and keep altering their bodies hoping that the next procedure will cure them and give them everlasting confidence and happiness and make them love themselves, but it doesn’t. It never does. Because the problem isn’t external, it isn’t your body. That’s what I eventually realized.
I didn’t like that I was hating myself more than ever and craving surgeries and becoming obsessed with picking out ‘flaws’ in the mirror. I felt insane. I felt like I did at the peak of my disordered eating episodes, except far, far worse. I knew that what I was doing was not healthy. Yet, everywhere I looked online, trans people were, well, doing the exact same stuff I was doing and calling it ~normal and healthy trans behavior~! It really started to freak me out. I decided to get off of all of the trans communities I was a part of. I deleted my twitter and instagram and reddit accounts and also stopped talking to my friends who were trans (that’s a bit of an extreme approach but I was really in a bad way. We weren’t very close anyway because I was so fucking depressed I had pulled away from everyone in my life. I don’t recommend anyone just cut off their friends willy-nilly).
Within just a month of being left to my own thoughts, journaling incessantly and engaging in deep self-reflection, I started to recognize that transition really wasn’t helping me and was, in fact, making things far worse for me. I realized that a lot of the things I heard in the trans community didn’t make very much sense but I hadn’t questioned it because -- well, you’re not really allowed to question things in the trans community. I realized most of them were self-loathing and encouraging self-loathing in other community members. I realized how the focus on validation was inane and vapid. I realized that “AFAB” people — females — really had no place in the trans community and were constantly shut down and told not to share their experiences because it was upsetting to trans women. I realized if I continued with medical transition, I would be a medical patient for the rest of my life. That frightened me. I hadn’t truly thought about that before. What would happen to my vagina if I stayed on testosterone? Was I putting myself at risk for cancers or liver disease? Would I need a hysterectomy? What if I wanted to have children? What if I wanted to breastfeed? Transition was complicating those things and it just didn’t quite seem worth it anymore. I wanted to just let my body be.
The biggest reason, probably, was that I realized transitioning would be committing to hiding a huge part of my life, basically forever. That I would either have to constantly come out to people as trans and have to worry about who was safe and who wasn’t, or I’d have to go stealth, and pretend to be ‘one of the guys’, when I really couldn’t relate to men because I didn’t grow up as a boy. I wasn’t raised male, I wasn’t born male, and I couldn’t go back in time and change that. Men bond with each other over having shared childhood experiences, and I didn’t have those. I missed camaraderie with women so much. I missed that knowing smile that two women walking down the street make at each other. I missed the safety of women’s bathrooms. I realized I would always have the shared childhood experiences of women and that would never go away. And I’d either have to lie for the rest of my life and pretend that never happened, or I’d have to live in fear of my past being revealed if someone clocked me. And it all just suddenly seemed so stupid.
Why was I doing this to myself? Why was I making myself an outsider like that? Why was I making myself a life-long medical patient when my dysphoria wasn’t even going away? I missed being a woman. I finally admitted it to myself and I cried and cried and cried. I realized that I had never really wanted to be a man, anyway — I just didn’t want to be a woman. I just was fed up with the difficulties of being a woman in our society and I hated being objectified and I hated being sexually harassed all the time and I hated feeling unsafe in my body. I hated being a lesbian, hated that people would make gross assumptions about me, thinking of a porn category before thinking of me as a human being. And I realized I had been taking all that anger and hurt and pain and basically directing it at myself. I had been harming myself because I was angry at the way society treated me for being a woman. And that made me cry even more. I cried for like, days straight. I’m not even exaggerating. I had so much pain in me.
I realized my transition had been, ultimately, a really elaborate form of self-harm. I was blaming myself for the hatred directed at my body by a woman-hating society. But my body had never done anything wrong. I had never done anything wrong. I was suddenly overcome by a fierce overprotectiveness of my body. I immediately wanted to detransition. I wanted to protect my body and myself, and I didn’t want to hurt myself anymore. I didn’t want to continue hating myself and rejecting myself. There was never, ever anything wrong with me, and I was fucking pissed at all the people who convinced me that there was.
And so here I am. I realized that gender is a lie and that being a woman doesn’t really mean anything other than a label that society has given to me by virtue of my female sex. People may not like it when I’m loud and opinionated and hairy and not wearing makeup and not being subservient and obedient but that’s their fucking problem! I could do those things when I was on testosterone and people didn’t care because they perceived me as male, but I hadn’t actually changed at all. The only thing that changed was that it was suddenly OK for me to be myself because people thought I was male. But I was actually free to be myself the entire time, even if some people don’t like it, and I’m free to be myself now, even if people know I am female. Fuck the people who think that masculine women must secretly be men. I realized that’s actually crazy homophobic. Fuck the people who think that lesbians are gross and would rather me ‘turn myself into a heterosexual man’ so that they can feel more comfortable. Who cares!! It’s my life. People might think masculine women and lesbians are disgusting, and those people are heinous and wrong. Woman is just a word to describe me and other female people who are adults; that’s all, it means nothing more than that. And that was the most freeing and wonderful realization. That ‘woman’ carries a lot of cultural baggage, but I don’t need to pick it up and carry it with me. I can be a woman and be myself and if people misunderstand me or dislike me for it, that’s their fucking problem, not mine.
And THAT is why I decided to detransition. :)
Let's talk about gender dysphoria and body dysmorphia.
Because I've been noticing more and more that way too many people don't actually know the difference between these two disorders, and that's concerning. So I wanted to talk about it. Give some definitions, share my personal experiences with both, and then discuss a particularly alarming thing I think is happening.
What is gender dysphoria?
Gender dysphoria is when one or more of your physical traits do not line up with the way you perceive your gender and want to present yourself. So for instance, things like chest size, genitals, and the pitch of your voice can commonly cause gender dysphoria. It's important to note the word gender in the term gender dysphoria. That's because this disorder refers specifically to things that you relate to your gender, I want to really put emphasis on that. Gender dysphoria is specifically when a physical traits causes you dysphoria in relation to your gender.
The most common treatment for gender dysphoria is to change the physical trait that is causing it, whether this be through surgery, hormones, or even just getting a haircut. Therapy might help some people, but transition is usually the most effective option.
Personally I experience gender dysphoria because of my voice and lack of facial/body hair. I plan to remedy this by taking testosterone.
What is body dysmorphia?
Body dysmorphia is when you incorrectly perceive one of your physical traits as being "ugly" or "wrong." There isn't actually anything wrong with the particular physical trait, your mind just perceives that there is. So for instance, thinking you have a massive nose, thinking your eyes are too small, thinking your stomach is huge, or thinking your feet are too small. You view parts of your body as being gross and you think that everyone else also views your body this way. I'd personally call it a delusion. Body dysmorphia warps your sense of reality and causes you to see yourself in a way that's not real.
Body dysmorphia cannot be treated by changing the physical trait that is causing distress. Because there is actually nothing wrong with said physical trait in the first place, and your mind is incorrectly perceiving your physical appearance, changing your appearance will not cure body dysmorphia. It is something that has to be treated with mental healthcare. Therapy is the most likely treatment option, though medications may be given.
I personally have body dysmorphia in relation to my chest and stomach. I think my chest is too saggy and my stomach sticks out too far. Anyone else will tell you that I look perfectly normal and that my body is supposed to look like that, but I still have a hard time accepting that I don't look like a hideous freak. I plan on talking with a therapist about it.
Why is it so important to know the difference?
So few people seem to know the difference between these two disorders, and I think it's causing a lot of people pain that they shouldn't have to go through. I wanna talk about two things that I think are happening, one in the radfem community and one in the detrans community.
I see a lot of radfems with "dysphoric female" in their bios, and the way they talk about gender dysphoria seems odd to me. I've seen them say that afab people specifically who have gender dysphoria are just "internalizing patriarchal beauty standards" and that seems, odd right? I think that what's happening is they are confusing gender dysphoria with body dysmorphia. I think that a lot of them probably experience body dysmorphia (likely because of the aforementioned internalized patriarchal beauty standards) and they are projecting this onto afab trans people and assuming that they are experiencing the same thing. That's why so many radfems think that transition doesn't always work and that therapy should be the first choice for treatment, because they're talking about body dysmorphia.
But the thing is, a lot of trans people don't know the difference either. When I hear stories from people who have detransitioned and they talk about how medical transition didn't make their negative feelings about their appearance go away, that immediately signals to me that they probably actually have body dysmorphia. I think that these dysmorphic people start noticing how badly they feel about certain aspects of their appearance, and then they talk about it and someone says "oh that's gender dysphoria." I've seen it happen. I've seen people clearly describe their body dysmorphia and someone else labels it as gender dysphoria. And so because a bunch of trans people keep telling them it's gender dysphoria, they start calling it that too. Because who would know more about gender dysphoria than trans people who experience it right? So they go to therapy, they seek treatment, but they're seeking treatment for the wrong disorder. And then when transitioning inevitably doesn't work they're left confused and scared and hurt. And because the trans people who gave them the wrong information didn't know the information was wrong, they keep giving that same misinformation to other people.
To be clear, I'm not saying this is the case for all radfems or all people who have detransitioned. I'm referring to a very specific phenomenon that I've seen happen to very specific people in those communities.
So what do we do about this?
This misunderstanding is causing people so much pain and we have got to do something about it. I think the first step is to educate yourself and others about the differences between these two disorders. It's ignorance that breeds suffering. The next step should be to stop trying to tell other people what they are experiencing. Even if YOU think it sounds like they have gender dysphoria, you absolutely cannot just say "yeah that's gender dysphoria and I think you're trans." You cannot tell other people what their identity is. If you want to suggest that they do some research into gender dysphoria so that they can decide for themselves, that's fine. But do not tell them that they are or aren't trans. That isn't for you to decide.
If anyone has any thoughts on this, or something they'd like to add, please do. I think this is a really pervasive issue that is happening in several different communities, and it seems to be going completely unnoticed so far. So I really want to bring as much attention to this as possible.
Queer neurodivergent culture is wearing a mask even outside when it’s not mandated bc it hides facial tics and stims and it’s harder to tell your gender with a mask on.
AFAB trans people who want to get pregnant and have kids 🤝 AFAB trans people who get dysphoric from the thought of pregnancy
both being valid and deserving of your respect
Sisters, some of you may lack experience evaluating scientific evidence, yet are confronted with TRAs saying “science proves trans people exist!” and providing links to scientific studies claiming to have found a biological basis for trans identity, or proof that transition is beneficial to trans people.
I’d like to outline a few concepts that may help you understand the problems with the science that has been conducted on the subject of trans people. I am not a scientist, so I’d much appreciate any feedback or corrections.
1. Begging the question
Here are some of the studies being held up as proof that trans people are “valid”:
A study of the brains of trans women, trans men, cis women and cis men, and the potential for gender-based differences: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/01/150107082133.htm
A study on the brains of some trans men, and some cis men and cis women, claiming to show that the brains of the trans men had more similarities to the cis male brains, relative the cis female brains: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0022395610001585
You’ve heard it before, I’m sure. Are you ready to learn why these studies were giant wastes of time? And no, it’s not even because of the obvious problem right off the bat (How did they know there were no closted trans people in the “cis” groups? How could they be sure there were no future detransitioners in the trans groups?).
It’s because, if you want to do science, you cannot start by assuming what you are trying to prove. This is known as the fallacy of “begging the question.” They relied on the self-reports of trans people to sort them in a group apart from cis people. In attempting to prove the biological basis for the category “trans”, they assumed the category “trans” had a biological basis. This is what pseudoscientists do.
This fallacy comes up a lot in arguments with the devoutly religious: “The human eye is too complex to have evolved, it must have been designed. Therefore, God exists.” Sir, no…. you cannot assume that the eye is too complex to have evolved that way. You must prove that to me.
What they should have done, right from the start, is study the brains of self-identified trans people, and from there predict the future detransitioners. Or they could have studied the brains of self-identified non-trans people, and predicted which ones were closted trans people. That would have been real science.
“I am not convinced. After all, they found something that looks “female” in the brains of the trans women! Maybe their methods are flawed but they must have found something!”
Not necessarily. I think what may be going on is known as:
When I was a young child, I saw a History Channel Special that claimed to prove that the Bible predicted the JFK assassination. I think the letters of a certain translation were arranged in grid form, and certain words related to the JFK assassination were grouped in close proximity. Stupid, right?
But I was just a kid, so I told my dad “Dad! Did you know the bible predicted the JFK assassination?” And my father recognized that as an excellent opportunity to teach me about p-hacking.
“No,” he said, “those are just coincidences.”
“Dad, are you blind? What are the odds that those exact words would be found together like that?”
“Not very high. But don’t forget… they weren’t looking for evidence that the bible predicted the JFK assassination. They were looking for evidence that the Bible predicted anything, in the history of ever. It’s actually quite unlikely, using their methods, that you’d find NO uncanny predictions of anything that’s ever happened in human history. And you’d probably find a few uncanny predictions in the Harry Potter books, using this method.”
These researchers in the second study cited did not set out to find whether trans men had similar fractional anistropy levels in posterior part of the right superior longitudinal fasciculus to cis men. They were looking at whether the white matter patterns of trans men had any similarity to cis men (of course, in doing so they flagrantly beg the question, but I digress).
The brain is highly complex. When you conduct an MRI scan, you generate mountains of data. And if you set out to prove that a similarity exists somewhere in this mile-deep well of data you have generated for these individuals, you are going to find something that appears statistically significant. It’s actually unlikely that you will find no similarities between any two groups of people who have their brains scanned. And, if you are engaged in anti-scientific motivated reasoning, you will take this and claim to have found evidence for a biological basis for trans identification.
“Perhaps there is faulty science going on but you can’t argue with the results! Transition saves lives! Studies have shown that it makes people feel so much better!”
Well, there’s a problem with that, too.
3. The placebo effect
The neurological basis of the placebo effect has been extensively studied. We know, for example, that it can be augmented or dampened by certain drugs. We know that it exists even when you know you are being given a placebo. And we know that the more elaborate a placebo is, the more effective it is: so a surgery will be more effective than an injection, which will be better than a pill.
Do you see where I’m going with this? Have you ever heard of a more elaborate treatment than gender transition: surgery, hormones, clothing, hair, name, pronouns, every aspect of your life can change.
But transition has not been proven to be any more effective at treating gender dysphoria than some kind of equally elaborate placebo. That’s the piece that’s missing, that would usually be accounted for when studying any sort of medical treatment.
“But there are a lot of health benefits to placebos. If they help people, then they help people.”
This is true. There’s a problem, though. Transition is not tumeric pills or reiki or like… journaling frequently. In fact, it comes with risks of absolutely nightmarish consequences. Trans women are walking around, right now, with colostomy bags because of botched vaginoplasties. Trans men are stuck with chronic kidney infections from phalloplasties, as well as the risk of gangrene and lifelong weakness in their donor sites, as well as phantom pain and progressive tightening and sclerosing from their mastectomies. Puberty blockers disrupt brain development and put a child at risk of osteoporosis, sterility, and sexual dysfunction. Hormones cause powerful and systemic changes that have not been fully studied, but consider this: what happens when the cartilagenous valves on a male-sized heart become thinner and more flexbile under the influence of estrogen? What happens when the cartilage structures in a female sized brain become larger and tougher in response to testosterone? Do you know?
You don’t, because nobody knows. We aren’t studying these treatments. We are experimenting on human beings, just like they did in the Nazi camps, and for what: treatments that have not been proven to be better than a placebo, that are based on faulty science, and that don’t even hold up to common sense. Why would you amputate a healthy young woman’s breasts? Because she begged you to? Is that how medicine works?
“But why does the trans rights movement need to lean on junk science? Why don’t they do real science instead?”
Because it is a religion. That’s it, that’s the only explanation left. They believe that they have gender identities, that are at odds with their physical bodies. Theses gender identities have not been demonstrated to exist. These gender identities seem to want things of trans people, and they seem to be placated with certain rites (going to the beach after top surgery, standing to pee after phalloplasty) and certain prayers (compelled pronoun usage). Gender identities act similarly to the members of any polytheistic pantheon.
I have no problem with anyone’s religion. But it is time the scientific establishment, and the government, understand that in “affirming” trans people, while defacing the scientific method, logic and common sense, they are in fact respecting an establishment of religion. They do this to the ultimate detriment of trans people, who have come to them for help, for answers, and are made a mockery.
“Why do you care so much about trans people?”
Because they’re human beings and they deserve better than this horseshit. Because I used to be one. Because if not me, then who?
i don’t know if its a widespread issue but i hate when gay guys and trans guys are used as a token.
i’ve been part of the fandom since before i came out as trans. there was this group of girls in the fandom that i was sorta friends with but more so mutuals. anyways, they never really talked with me. but the SECOND i came out as a trans guy and said i was gay, all of a sudden i was interesting enough for them. they started screaming out of excitement and saying we would be best friends and suddenly wanting to hang out on servers and chats all the time.
i saw the weird timing of it all immediately but chose to ignore it cuz i was a lonely bitch at the time and felt the need to bow down to other people’s needs and wants in order to maintain friendships.
flash forward a few months when one of their friends started bullying me and being transphobic. the girls immediately went to defend that person saying he was a good guy and that what he was doing wasn’t transphobic and i had no right to call it that (imagine that! a trans person having the right to say what’s transphobic, and NOT some cishet girls feeling like they have the right to determine that!) and that i never should have corrected this guy on pronouns they screwed up on (despite the fact that i said it politely). cuz apparently his ego is too small for mistakes? lmfao. and the person i felt closest to in the friend group completely ignored me after this all went down and never reached out after i was sobbing over experiencing transphobia.
anyways, we’re obviously not friends anymore! looking back i just thought this whole chain of events was weird. us trans/gay men are PEOPLE. we’re not a pawn or a token or a pet you’ve always wanted. and no matter how many times you scream ‘trans rights!’ or are a part of the drag fandom, if you can’t stand with us when experiencing hate acts and instead act like you can silence us, it just shows how we’re only valued as tokens and entertainment.
and i will never EVER in a million years bring my worth back down to where i’m another token friend.