Oneness Ministry

We are One

It’s Not About Surgery

Anyone in the Transgender community knows what the treatment for Gender Dysphoria is.  As stated by WPATH, Treatment for gender dysphoria varies with severity of symptoms, but may include counseling, crossdressing, contra-hormone therapy, and surgery.  Here is an article which explains the nuances quite well.  It is so very important to emphasize the counseling rather than the surgery in my opinion for several reasons.  This obviously will be different for each person, so take this with a grain of salt.

The Transgender journey to me is all about acceptance, both of who you are and what you have to work with.  So if someone goes out and modifies their appearance and/or function (SRS/GRS) does this really change who they are?  This may or may not help to alleviate the perceptions of the individual and those who meet this transgender individual.  From my experience, invasive treatment is really beside the point and offers nothing more than something to compare with.  Meaning, you have a different presentation and perhaps this feels good at first, but after a while you realize it just doesn’t matter.  The roles you play are different, but you are still that same person at the core (with the same mental/emotional issues).  Let’s face it, we are all playing roles in society and these roles seem to define us, but do they really? Does the fact that you are working as a mechanic or a mother or a manager really make you who you are?  Or is it the other way around?  You define the roles!  At least this is the way it should be in my opinion.  So by defining a role you decide if women are good mechanics or if hair dressers are bitchy.  You; not your gender defines the role.

So the transition journey is really about coming to an acceptance of who you are or to say it more simply, liking yourself!   We all go through this process and transgender people have just chosen to do it by way of gender.  Substance abuse is another way to “find yourself” and come to an acceptance.  There are many challenges we each unconsciously choose as our own method of spiritual growth!  You are probably engaged in this process right now in your own way.  The good news is no matter which path you choose the Universe conspires to make it the most productive learning lesson it can be.

We each define our own parameters for what is acceptable to a certain extent; however we are each a part of the whole and society is one aspect of that whole.  So why do we allow society to dictate these parameters?  Because we are part of the whole!  So then it becomes a matter of conformity.  I find it interesting that most people consider themselves non-conformists, but they are still a part of society and in their own way conforming to the greater whole (myself included).  It is my understanding that we each make up one part of this whole and that we are each different.

So why not just be this different person and stop trying to conform to a perceived reality?  This is in fact my vow, to be myself and be happy with who I am.  Yes, I was born male and yes I feel most comfortable in women’s clothing, so what?  I am attracted to loving people, not to body parts.  I wish to be loved just like everyone else!  And I wish to be that loving person within my own comfort zone, which with some effort is constantly expanding.

The point here is that surgery and hormones are a tool for an effect, but they do not change who you truly are!  If others have difficulty with your appearance or behavior that is actually their issue not yours.  Continue being your authentic self and loving it!  Why? Because the other choices are just not any fun, at least not in the long run.

Sequoia Elisabeth 🙂

Unity in Gender Diversity


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Gender Surgery

Continuing from the previous blog post, doing research concerning transition and Genital Reassignment Surgery (GRS) is very important.  The older term SRS (Sexual Reassignment Surgery) is still used by some.  Please review this page in the Gender Learning Center (Click here) for assistance in your research.

SRS/GRS is not as complicated as one would think.  The procedure has been done now for over 50 years and lately the surgeons are getting very good at it.  Some of the issues to be concerned with are logistics, cost and convenience.  The skill of the surgeon is a very hot topic and while this is important, it is not as big an issue as it would seem.  Depending on where the surgery is done, most countries have strict standards doctors must abide by, especially since surgery and medical care has become a commodity that brings in big money.  Thailand and India are emerging as world leaders in this market so they definitely deserve a close look and your consideration when it comes to choosing your surgeon and location.   The price you pay is many hours in a plane traveling across the world to save a few thousand dollars.  When you can barely sit down, being in an airplane for 20+ hours is not appealing.  Of course there are options to cope with this such as meds and cushions.  From what I hear it is worth the trip.

The USA has several very good surgeons now doing SRS/GRS, so look closely at the local options.  Most gender therapists will know who they are as do the gender support groups.   I will not list them here because I would leave some out and that is not my purpose here.  The informational sites I list on my website do include several surgeons, however I chose them on the basis of information provided, not on how good the surgeon is.  If you have questions or need help finding someone close to you I am happy to assist.  See the website Unity in Gender Diversity.

Logistics includes things like travel, housing, post care, assistance during recovery, preparations before surgery, documentation (passport, proper ID, surgery letters from your therapist), and medical records.  Each surgeon will have requirements for you to meet, and they give ample advanced notice in most cases, however it is prudent to research this, so you are prepared.  Call it peace of mind.

Cost is an issue that we all are acutely aware of.  Many options exist however it is recommended that you get references from the surgeon you choose and make sure the location has the resources to provide safe and effect treatment in the event of an unexpected emergency.   The costs include, travel, housing, food, surgeon fees, hospital fees, operating room fees, anesthesia fees, and medicines.  Most surgeons have package deals so make sure exactly what you are getting and what will be extra.  The recovery time is at least two weeks and many take as much as six weeks, so another cost is time off of work.

Convenience is the last but not least concern when choosing a surgeon and location.  It is not to be under estimated. From the many post op transsexuals I have talked with, being able to travel a short distance to the surgery center and home again is a real plus.  The horror stories of being on a plane for hours and hours is something to consider carefully.  Take into consideration your age, possible side trips, who will be with you, and your travel experience.  Those who are seasoned travelers will be more inclined to go far to save a little money.  I also hear that sightseeing in places like Thailand can make it all worthwhile.  Don’t rule out locations such as Europe, Mexico, Caribbean, India, or Canada.  Check with your local Gender support group for those surgeons who are close to you and be sure to check credentials and review customer satisfaction of others who have experienced their services.

Sequoia Elisabeth

Unity in Gender Diversity     Discover Sex and Sexuality click here



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