Oneness Ministry

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What do we really know about Gender?

What do we really know about gender?  It seems we know far more about physical sex since this is tangible.  Both Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation are constructions of the mind thus making them difficult to pin down.  It seems now they are not even “hardwired into the brain” as once believed.  (All thoughts come from the mind not the brain just in case you were unaware of this).  What makes us so malleable?  The old debate between Nature and Nurture seems to make vacillations from one to the other on a regular basis.  Perhaps it is neither!?!   This just came out and changes the game once again.

“A team of researchers successfully changed the gender in the brains of newborn rats from female to male, according to findings published this week in Nature Neuroscience. “Physically, these animals were females, but in their reproductive behavior, they were males,” Bridget Nugent, the lead author said…” (Reed, Carey 2015)

What does this mean to those who identify as Transgender?  This new finding would indicate that our status is the result of some chemical change presumably in the environment.  It is just as likely to occur after birth as before.  Perhaps it was the miscarriage drug given in the 50’s and 60’s, Diethylstilbestrol (DES) or perhaps it is in the food we eat.  Soy is now found in much of our foods especially since many children are lactose intolerant now and use soy as an alternative.  (I have personally felt the effects of phytoestrogens from foods like soy and flax).  There are many other sources of estrogen in the environment and it would follow that there are estrogen inhibitors also.  This would explain the gender incongruences and dysphoria’s that some experience throughout their lives.

Even sexual orientation is affected by the hormones running through our bodies.  Before starting hormone therapy I was curious about sex with men but had never been driven to seek out sex with them.  I was more stimulated by women.  After taking estrogen for some time my desires shifted to men and at the peak of treatment with a high dose I was passionate about it.  Now that I have no testosterone and take no estrogen (levels normal for a female of my age) I don’t really have any sexual drive.  The conclusion I would draw from my experience is that our hormones are behind our sexual drive and perhaps even our sexual orientation.

The question then is perhaps instead of using Contra-hormone therapy to treat Gender Dysphoria or Incongruency a neuter approach is more appropriate.  I am sure this would depend on the age of the individual and their desired outcome, but having no sex drive seems more desirable than one which drives you crazy (personal opinion).  This is not about sexual reproduction, because we already have far more people in this world than can be easily sustained and we certainly don’t need more egos running around!

Concerning gender identity the jury is still out.  It does seem that it is also malleable and if you want to be a girl or a boy that option exists.  My question would be Why?  Why do you feel wrong in your body?  Do you really even have a body?  Perhaps this is all just an insane delusion after all!  Question Everything!

Sequoia Elisabeth 🙂

Unity in Gender Diversity

 

 

 

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Why Transition?

Recently I was asked why anyone would want to take hormones and have surgery to change their sex.  They were curious about the personal benefits involved.  We often hear the costs involved, such as $$$, social status, and sexual dysfunction, however what a cysgender person cannot know is the pain, dysfunction, and inner turmoil that exists for a transgender person.  The very question demonstrates a lack of understanding.  So let’s set the record straight by explaining a few things.

First of all, incongruency exists for a transgender person, because they live in the opposite body of which both their brain and identity have aligned.  They are operating without the proper chemistry and attempting to work with the wrong tools.  You can use pliers to hammer nails but it just does not work very well.

Hormones assist in the regulation of brain function.  What determines Gender Identity is the effect of hormones on the fetus in the earliest stages of development.  “Scientific evidence has been growing that somehow certain brain-structures in the hypothalamus (the BSTc region) determine each person’s core gender feelings and innate gender identity. These structures are “hard-wired” pre-natally in the lower brain centers and central nervous system (CNS) during the early stages of pregnancy”.  (Dennis, Carina 2004)

Further, “Six years ago, the Netherlands Institute of Brain Research published the results of a study they had been conducting…. A subsequent report was published last year in the leading international journal for neurological studies, The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism [85 (5): 2034-41; May, 2000]….  What the researchers found were significant differences in the brains of men and women relevant to reproductive hormones, cognition, emotions, and our body’s responses to them. The differences were both in magnitude and consistency and involve a region of the hypothalamus identified as the BSTc. Human males average about twice as many neurons within the BSTc as do females. In both males and females, transsexuals did not have the neuron number typical of their gender, but, instead, had the number typical of the sex they always believed they should be.” (Niedermayer, Grace 2004)

The relief a transgender person feels from the proper hormones is usually a euphoric experience.  The beautiful thing about contra-hormone therapy (CHT) is the effects are reversible completely for about the first six months and even after years of therapy if the person decides to revert, although sterility is likely.  In only a few weeks it is clear if CHT is the right choice.

Testosterone in a body wired for estrogen or vice versa will create dysphoria, agitation, and irritability.  So if euphoria and a general peaceful feeling are not experienced then CHT is not the answer and other treatment is indicated.  Yes, CHT is a treatment for a medical condition, gender incongruency (formally known as Gender Dsyphoria).

As in any medical condition it is best to have specific medical guidance by someone with experience in gender therapy!  It is possible to treat yourself, just as anyone with any medical condition can do, however the results very drastically.  Hormones are not a recreational drug!  I find this almost comical that someone would think so, and yet invariably people do.  If you would like to know more about hormones, their effects, what to expect, other gender and sexual info please read my eBook, Sex and Sexuality, One Woman’s Journey of Discovery.

😀 Sequoia Elisabeth

Unity in Gender Diversity             Free eBooks

 

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Medically Necessary Part II

Con’t from Nov. 21st

What this question is really speaking to is the insurance industries requirements for payment of treatment.  The fact that it is treatment means it is considered a disease and that it is a social non-conformity that needs correction.  Gender Dysphoria is presently in the DSM and the treatment includes GRS/SRS, FFS, etc. (as listed above).  So my answer would be yes, it is medically necessary from the medical/social perspective, because society as a whole expects people to be either male or female.  However from the Spiritual perspective, the answer would be no, it is not necessary because life is not being threatened by not having the surgery.  Some argue that the individual will commit suicide if they do not get this surgery or the person is marginalized into a high risk group for hate crime, thus it is life threatening.  I simply do not agree with this analysis.  It is an excuse plain and simple.  This does not mean that it is right or wrong.

Surgery is a coping mechanism, one way to cope with the perception that one’s body is incongruent with the person’s self-image or gender identity.  There are other ways to cope and it is the responsibility of the patient and their therapist to explore these options.  This is where things get very tricky!  Perception is a personal thing and others may perceive things differently.  In all manners of equality though, one has to ask if having any surgery is “medically necessary”?  Just because someone dies; it is not a bad thing.  Life goes on!  Maybe not that individuation of life and the belief that all life is to be preserved is based in compassion.  To me this is the crux of the issue, Compassion!  Caring for another’s needs whether “real” or imagined takes compassion and this is why surgical intervention is necessary.  Either a life has value and must be preserved or it does not and can be allowed to pass.  Who makes this choice?  It should be the individual’s choice and most often it is, with a few exceptions.

Life is about choice, because we are constantly choosing our path, the quality, and the extent of the experience (everything you think, say and do is a choice).  The value we place on this path/experience determines what we get out of the experience, including whether surgery is medically necessary.  Of course once we decide it is necessary, the medical community has to agree with us, which is done by offering lots of money, or the opportunity for caring compassion, or both.  Societal views are shifting in a more compassionate direction so more and more insurance companies are covering the surgery and many more surgeons are performing it.  The medical community after all is based on the compassionate care of others for the betterment of mankind. (this includes insurance companies!)

🙂 Sequoia Elisabeth

Unity in Gender Diversity    Free eBooks

 

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