Thursday, June 23, 2011
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Some reasons why this might occur include:
The person is not transsexual.
Regardless of whether the person is truly transsexual or not, it’s possible that because of having lived so long with gender dysphoria and accompanying social and physical dissatisfaction, one may think of a full gender transition as a magical ticket to happiness. I have seen this (sometimes unconscious) wish accompanied by other unrealistic expectations such as: the idea that one will have a social community, better social skills, be more popular, etc.
The person encountered too many problems with transition (i.e. dissatisfaction with their post-transition life).
Levels of regret
Certainly a person who has made a gender transition can have certain regrets that are not extreme enough to cause them to wish to de-transition. The WPATH Standards of Care notes that “cases are known of persons who have received hormone therapy and sex reassignment surgery who later regretted their inability to parent genetically related children”. Other less extreme regrets can involve loss of certain benefits of privileges commonly associated with one gender or another.
Some research on regret:
Pfafflin F., Junge A. (1992) Sex Reassignment: 30 Years of International Follow-up Studies after SRS: A Comprehensive Review, 1961-1991 [publication online]. Translated from German into American English by Roberta B. Jacobson and Alf B. Meier. IJT Electronic Books.
This study looked at 70 previous studies and reviews on outcomes following sex reassignment surgery. These included 2000 individuals from 1961 to 1991. This doesn’t take into account individuals who transition without surgery. About 70% of MTF individuals were satisfied and 90% of FTM individuals.
Krege S., Bex A., Lummen G., et al. (2001). Male-to-female transsexualism: a technique, results and long-term follow-up in 66 patients. BJU International. 88:396-402.
This study shows little or no regrets possibly due to surgical advances.
Transitioning – For those transgendered individuals who decide to transition (to present and live in the other sex outwardly), these emotional/psychological issues may come up:
Fears about finding a partner
- Impact on family relationships with parents, children, partners and other relatives
- Impact of relationships at work and with friends.
- Fears about violence and prejudice when one is read as transgendered.
- Feelings about having to experience surgeries, hormones, (and for MTF transsexuals) facial hair removal and voice changes.
- Frustration of having to change or explain legal documents (drivers license, passport, titles to property, diplomas, etc)
- Disappointment that transitioning didn’t solve all problems.
- Level of satisfaction with appearance
- Level of satisfaction with any surgeries
When one decides not to transition. Not everyone is able or wants to transition. This is a perfectly valid choice for people to make. However these individuals must learn to cope with the tension that the gender dysphoria produces. Sometimes this can be helped by having times when one can cross-dress, interact with others who are aware of one’s status, talk about the issue, and take low-levels of hormones (that don’t effect the body outwardly).
Other mental health issues not related to being transgendered. Just because some one is transgendered doesn’t mean they don’t have other issues in their lives. It can be hard for some people to let themselves seek treatment for other issues when the gender dysphoria is so prominent a concern.
The good news: It’s important not to lose sight of the satisfaction one can have by acknowledging and (if possible) changing what can be changed and moving towards of one’s authentic self.
Peace and tolerance
THE EDITOR, Sir:
I write with reference to the letter by the Rev Rico Kaplan, titled 'Ja must cherish moral traditions', published June 21.
While one can possibly agree with part of his thesis regarding evil perpetuating itself when good people fall silent, I must disagree strongly with his equivocating homosexuality with immorality and degradation of society.
Maybe the goodly reverend could advise us, the members of the public, why is homosexuality considered immoral, outside the biblical context? Many persons in our society are not religious but tend to exhibit characteristics that would put most persons who profess 'Christian' values to shame. And why is it that human sexuality, a basic biological and human imperative, is so hypocritically moralised in our society?
Why are Jamaicans - whether gay or straight - made to feel ashamed by the American evangelicals (and their Jamaican franchises) of what is their natural sexual instinct?
a better world
It is high time that we tell these pontificators and others of such ilk that the modern world, despite the doom and gloom being preached, is an infinitely better world than the era we have left behind. If someone is gay, that does not make them immoral. Rather, it would be immoral to continue to keep homosexuals driven underground because of someone else's religious belief.
One would hope that this newspaper and the media on a whole would stop perpetuating this nonsense by publishing articles, such as the 'lesbian gangs' nonsense, which only serve to foster the environment of hate and violence which young homosexuals endure in this country.
We need to embrace diversity in this country if we ever hope to move forward. It is telling that a recent CNN article, which humorously ranked countries by their 'coolness', ranked Jamaica number 3 (what a ting if it was 2!), but noted, as a downside, our virulent homophobia.
We are fast becoming a laughing stock on the international stage, and part of it is because of the backward view some have of morality in our society.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
...but local gays press for equal rights
By Sue-Ann Wayow South Bureau
SISSY men, battie men, men haters.
Call them what you want, but the gays and lesbians in this country are humans like everyone else and should be treated as such. That's the view of Colin Robinson, spokesman for the Coalition Advocating for the Inclusion of Sexual Orientation (CAISO), in response to a survey that showed 69 per cent of Trinidadians were unsupportive of gays and lesbians.
The polling was done by the ANSA McAL Psychological Research Centre of the University of the West Indies
The research was commissioned by the Ministry of the People and Social Development and the results released last month.
It found that 76 per cent of persons 56 years and older were unsupportive of equal rights for homosexuals. Persons with a higher income and education level were more supportive than those who were primary educated and of a lower income. Females were more likely to be supportive than men.
The issue of equal rights has the attention of Government ministers who have had several debates pertaining to same-sex marriages in Parliament. In February, former gender affairs minister Mary King called for a national debate.
Robinson said he found the results of the report to be "very interesting".
"It does not say that those attitudes are acceptable..... we need to ensure that those attitudes don't fuel stigma and discrimination and prevent people from accessing rights. That part is the significance of the study."
Thirty-three-year-old Kenty Mitchell, who is openly gay, has been living with his partner for 14 years. Williams said he was never attracted to women.
The maxi driver from Ste Madeleine said men were more likely to be victimised if they were seen liming with a homosexual man.
"I think the majority does not really have anything against gays, but the men. They don't like other men to see you with them.They might be victimised or their friends might say they are gay, too, so that's why the men are in hiding."
He said many men, even though they had relationships with women, were attracted to others of their sex, but were hiding.
Mitchell, who boasts of a successful relationship, said nobody knew about his boyfriend except those who live in his area because he wanted to protect his loved one from daily discrimination.
"You are living your life pleasing to you and people are discriminating you so people who are gay or bisexual or whatever they are not coming out in the open because people tend to look at you funny."
Some of Mitchell's family members do not speak to him and he said his partner was the main person in his life.
"I would love to get married because if something happened to me today or tomorrow if I die, my family will contest it. If my friend have to get anything, my family would fight him down to the end and he has to get everything. They would not give him what is his own."
He said he would even like to have his own family if possible. And the government had full responsibility in making that happen, he said.
Robinson said some think that people do not deserve equal rights, which was alarming.
"We need desperately to create and Government needs to take leadership in creating a culture that says everyone has equal rights regardless to who they are."
He said homophobia — a negative attitude towards homosexuals and transgender individuals — created a social culture. "It is a climate that says that some people can be deprived the rights based on who they are and it could be gay people and lesbians today, it could be Hindus or Spiritual Baptists or any other group that is not the majority of the population."
Robinson said, "The recommendations in the study are about strengthening the protection of people from discrimination and I would add further creating a culture of equal rights for everyone in the country. We need to do more work to create a culture of equality for everyone."
He said people are willing to socialise with gay people and, because of that, attitudes will change and "people become humanised over the course of time."
More "sophisticated questions" should be asked by researchers to "really understand the context in which attitudes and behaviour is related to sexuality," Robinson said.
"How you ask the question will shape the answer that you get. What would have happened if people in had been asked do you believe that any group in Trinidad and Tobago should be discriminated against based on who they are?"
He said the responses from the various groups were expected.
" Those differences are well known in other settings, that gender and income and education all influence people responses to questions around sexual inclusion.....it gives us hope that with greater exposure and education that people's attitudes change."
Dr Gabrielle Hosein, lecturer at the Institute for Gender and Developmental Studies at the University of the West Indies in St Augustine, said all citizens should have the right to choose their partner, to marry, to inherit from their spouse or from their common-law partner and to be free of discrimination.
"We are living in a multicultural society, so we need to live in a society where the views of different persons are not necessarily imposed on others."
"The fact that certain sexual relations are criminalised and others are not speaks to a discrepancy and also hypocrisy in ways in which the state sees sex," Hosein said.
The report recommends —"The necessary legal framework should be put in place to protect homosexual persons from discriminatory practises. Legislation alone would not change attitudes and therefore,integrative approaches should be considered. The challenge of communicating with institutions that have strong philosophies against homosexuality will need to be addressed in attempting to reduce discrimination."
I have been saddened by so many articles lately featuring the degradation of Jamaican society. A few weeks ago, there was an article about lesbian gangs in the schools bothering young girls.
I read about that 11-year-old boy who just a few days ago tragically hanged himself, and I also read about the escalation of violence in the public schools.
Coming from the States, I have watched the systematic destruction of American society over the last 20 years. The social scientists, the economic pundits, and the secular humanists all have tried to 'fix' American society, and it has done nothing but get worse.
Rampant homosexuality fills American streets, amorality runs wild, rudeness is accepted out of fear, and young people have lost all respect for the older generations.
We must never forget that evil proliferates only when good men and women don't speak up.
If this spiral is not stopped soon, Jamaica, too, will join the ranks of other modern societies where traditional, sound and healthy morals and ethics have been abandoned and replaced by a disastrous moral anarchy that, historically, has resulted in the downfall of many great civilisations.
RICO KAPLAN (Rev)
one cannot force someone to become gay or better yet engage in same sex activity if they didn't agree or wanted to in the first place, everyone's sexual orientation is different and one can choose to express or act upon it as seen fit to them, paedophilia despite which gender however is a disorder that requires treatment and most consenting same gender loving adults are NOT interested in children or teens
don't let what some misguided guidance counselors out out of their own fear of the unknown using scare tactics crying wolf when it is only a sheep
and what about men of the cloth who are paedophiles too? how convenient that in your letter you forgot to include them in your castigation or is it because you do not want to label your fellow ministers as such since y'all holy and righteous
also the other side of the coin must be looked at there is something called teleiophilia which is where teens or pubescent persons are erotically attracted to adults, one wonders if alot of that is not right here in Jamaica we often hear of school girls who openly say that want a "big man" to go with as boys in their age group "caan do di wuk"
finally isn't your job and primary focus to win souls for the kingdom (whoever and whatever that soul maybe) and not judge?"
What about come as you are and god loves you?
Most churches dismiss persons once they are found to be gay or lesbian with little or any care, isn't that defeating the purpose of what Christ decreed we as saved persons should do....."go ye into the world and preach the gospel......" not condemn people because they don't fit your Utopian view of the world.
Sad that this is what we have become, one wonders if the church by it's actions of some of who say they are saved are giving more power to the enemy notable atheists and the anti Christ supporters when we behave with some harsh discrimination, during the conversation by the way the young man said that the pastor some Sundays ago of a church he attended said he wanted no offerings from gays. So we can now decide who want offerings from, wow.
Makes me wonder if the church and biblical doctrine is used by some to forward homophobic as well as other discriminatory views maybe that explains the attrition from it's halls and corridors as most young people aren't even interested in going to church these days.
As for using the bible as a beating stick over the heads of "sinners" is just plain wrong to me. Famous among the quotes is Leviticus 20: 13"
Read the rest HERE
Monday, June 20, 2011
NAIROBI (TrustLaw) - South African teenage runner Caster Semenya spent two hours lying with her legs in stirrups so doctors could photograph her genitals to decide whether she was a man or a woman.
Such humiliation is a common experience for intersexuals, who are born with both male and female genitalia. And Semenya’s case is not unusual – one in 4,000 babies is sexually ambiguous at birth.
In Kenya, lawyer John Chigiti is committed to winning legal recognition for intersex people and protecting their rights.
Chigiti’s first case was that of Richard Muasya, who was being held in a male prison where he had been sexually harassed by inmates and staff.
Muasya was awarded 500,000 Kenyan shillings ($6,000) for inhuman and degrading treatment. But the judges refused to provide alternative facilities for him.
Even worse, they refused to acknowledge the challenges faced by intersexuals due to their inability to get birth certificates, which require recognition of male or female gender.
The court argued that acknowledging a third sex would open the floodgates to homosexuality, which is illegal in Kenya.
“We are not persuaded that there is (a) definite number of intersex persons in Kenya as to form a class or body of persons in respect of whose interest the petitioner can bring a representative suit… his case must be treated as an isolated case,” the judges said.
Muasya’s case is on appeal, and Chigiti is determined to fight on. He is now representing eight intersex people.
His next case is that of a three-year-old child whose parents want to perform surgery to assign the child a recognised gender.
Traditionally, doctors have been quick to perform hush-hush “corrective” surgery.
“Some parents are even willing to sell their body organs to meet the corrective surgery costs for their intersexual children,” said Chigiti.
But this has proven extremely damaging. Many intersex adults say their lives have been scarred by the operations they underwent as babies.
They often feel confused about their gender identity, even if they don’t know they were born intersex. Some attempt suicide.
The Lancet journal found that those who were left as nature made them fared as well, if not better, than those who had undergone an operation. Being themselves was more important than fitting in with society’s idea of normality.
“I am looking into the possibility of generating guidelines where such surgeries will only be done with the authority and leave of the court after hearing all sides and issues around the operation from doctors, experts and human rights experts, the child and the parents. This is the only way to realise the best interest of the child,” Chigiti said.
Chigiti spoke to TrustLaw about his commitment to providing pro bono legal services to intersexuals.
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Thanks for your Donations
thank you for your donations via Paypal in helping to keep this blog going and related costs. Please continue to support me and my allies in this venure that has now become a full time activity. When I first started blogging in late 2007 it was just as a pass time to highlight GLBTQ issues in Jamaica under then JFLAG's blogspot page but now clearly there is a need for more forumatic activity which I want to continue to play my part.
Activities & Plans: ongoing and future
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Recent Homophobic Incidents
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Steps to Take When Contronted or Arrested by Police
b) Only give name and address and no other information until a lawyer is present to assist
c) Try to be polite even if the scenario is tensed) Don’t do anything to aggravate the situation
e) Every complaint lodged at a police station should be filed and a receipt produced, this is not a legal requirement but an administrative one for the police to track reports
f) Never sign to a statement other than the one produced by you in the presence of the officer(s)
g) Try to capture a recording of the exchange or incident or call someone so they can hear what occurs, place on speed dial important numbers or text someone as soon as possible
h) File a civil suit if you feel your rights have been violatedi) When making a statement to the police have all or most of the facts and details together for e.g. "a car" vs. "the car" represents two different descriptions
j) Avoid having the police writing the statement on your behalf except incases of injuries, make sure what you want to say is recorded carefully, ask for a copy if it means that you have to return for it