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Religious Tolerance logo

Transgender persons and transsexuals


Additional information about
transgender persons & transsexuals,
including basic definitions of terms.

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The term "LGBT" is an acronym for "Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals,
transgender persons/transsexuals. Sometimes, additional letters
are added, like "Q" for Queer or questioning, & "I" for Intersexual.

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Basic definitions of terms:

As of mid-2018, there is a lack of consensus on the precise meaning of many terms related to transgender and transsexual individuals:

We believe that the following are common definitions:

  • A transgender person is a member of a small minority for whom their perceived gender does not match their birth-assigned gender. Most commonly, they have been assigned a gender at birth based on their primary sexual characteristics. However at some point in their life -- often during childhood aged 3+ -- they will strongly identify their gender as being different from their assigned gender. Most feel that they are of the opposite gender; some feel that the term "gender" doesn't apply to them; a few alternate between genders; a few identify as both male and female or as intermediate between the two genders.

  • A transsexual person is a transgender individual who lives in society as a gender different from their birth-assigned gender. Many have taken hormone medication and/or undergone sex reassignment surgery so that their body more closely resembles a their perceived gender. This term is declining in use during recent years in favor of the single inclusive term "transgender."

  • Transgender persons experience Gender Incongruence (formerly called Gender Identity Disorder (GID)). They have a strong identification with a sex different from the sex that they were assigned at birth, or with both sexes or with neither sex.

  • Other transgender persons experience 'Ambivalent Gender Identity.' They have equal identification with the opposite sex as with the sex they were assigned at birth.

  • Gender Dysphoria relates to strong feelings of anxiety, misery, and depression that is usually associated with being transgender. About 40% of them attempt suicide during their lifetime.

  • Autogynephilia relates to some males who are erotically aroused by the thought or image of themselves as a woman. The term was created in the late 1980's by Ray Blanchard. 1

Transgender persons form a very small minority in the population. However, future public opinion polls will likely show an increase in their numbers, as they become more accepted by the general population and thus feel safer about openly admitting their personal information to polling agencies.

It is likely that they will be increasingly targeted by transphobes -- individuals who want to discriminate against transgender persons. This is expected to grow rapidly as discrimination against LGBs (Lesbians, Gays and Bisexuals) rapidly fades and gay marriages become more widely accepted. However, transphobia is expected to fade in future decades as being transgender becomes widely accepted in society. Today's transphobes, most of whom were formerly homophobes -- person discriminating against homosexuals and bisexuals -- will move on to attack another minority. "Haters gotta hate."

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Use of gender pronouns:

Most MTF transgender persons -- those identified as male at birth and who now identify as female -- prefer the use of "she," "her," etc.

Most FTM transgender persons -- those identified as female at birth and who now identify as male -- prefer the use of "he," "his," etc.

"They" and "their" are sometimes used as gender-neutral singular pronouns.

Some prefer recently created gender-neutral pronouns such as "ze," "zie,""hir," "co," etc.

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Topics covered in this section:

  • Part 1: Conflicting quotations. Different views on what exactly is gender?

  • Part 2: Comparing cisgender persons with others who don't fit neatly into the male/female binary system. IRS conflicts.

  • Part 3: Various definitions of "transgender." The definition used on this site. Symptoms & detection

  • Part 4: Gender Dysphoria in children. Options available to transgender persons. Terminology. Is being transgender a "disorder?"

  • Part 5: Definition of Gender Dysphoria. Gender Incongruence. Catch 22. A transgender symbol. Birth-identified sex on birth certificates

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A movie:

bullet Tom Murray produced and directed a video concerning transsexuals. It is titled: "Almost Myself: Reflections on mending and transcending gender." See:

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References used:

The following information sources were used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.

The following information source was used to prepare and update the above essay. The hyperlink is not necessarily still active today.

  1. Ray Blanchard, "Early History of the Concept of Autogynephilia," Archives of Sexual Behavior, Vol. 34, No. 4, 2005-AUG, pp. 439–446

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Site navigation:

 Home > Transsexuality... > here

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 Home > Christianity > Christian history, belief... > Beliefs > Transsexuality... > here

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Home > Religious Information > Basic data > Transsexuality... > here

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Home > Morality and ethics > Transsexuality... > here

Copyright © 2007 to 2021 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Original posting: 2018-AUG-08
Latest update and review: 2021-JAN-15
Author: B.A. Robinson

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