Soundslikeachair
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#1
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#1
Wanting to be something that you are not -- isn't that somehow a mental issue, as would wanting to be a dog? On the other hand, aren't the ideas governing what is male and female just human constructs?

I'm putting this in philosophy because I think it raises many questions about the idea of normality, and its importance (or lack of).

What do you think?
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24yearsSpurs
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#2
Report 6 years ago
#2
normalcy doesnt exist.

gender is real and biological, it's only hardline feminists who say it doesnt exist.

and it's a proven mental illness, and transgenders have male or femal brains when they are phyiscally of another gender.
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Soundslikeachair
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#3
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#3
Exactly, which makes it very interesting when transgender children are attracted to different-gender clothing. That shouldn't really happen. So, I think transgenderism is more an environmental thing. Unlike most others, they feel disconnected from the social norms belonging to their own gender, and therefore feel a psychological attraction to the other.
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Soundslikeachair
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#4
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#4
http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/de...transgenderism

It doesn't really matter anyway.

*Trans isn't really an environmental thing, it's an identity thing. It's how the person self-identifies, regardless of the environmental/social pressures to the contrary.*

Well, yeah, but people aren't *naturally* driven towards a certain gender of clothing. So, the reason for a male preferring female clothing, at a young age, must be at least partly environmental. Any identity is environmental. We are not born racist, or greedy, or selfish, or altruistic -- everything is learned, except physical characteristics.

Also, I think (whatever you want to call it) originates from a lack of uncertainty. If you are certain that you belong to a specific gender, the exterior alterations are therefore unnecessary as that would only be an attempt to have the exterior and interior match, which would only be necessary if a person was uncertain. If someone is uncertain, the exterior alterations are to enforce that certainty in the mind. So it is both a fundamental uncertainty, and a belief that the exterior affects the interior that would cause a person to change gender -- instead of someone simply being indifferent to it.
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Soundslikeachair
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#5
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#5
Agreed, but that wasn't my point. My point was that actively seeking to alter the exterior to fit the interior (by this I mean surgical operations), be that interior a construct of recursive behavior or not, must be the result of a need to make the exterior confirm the feelings of the interior. If the interior feelings are certain, then confirmation is not necessary.
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Soundslikeachair
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#6
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#6
So, running with the assumption that people who undergo surgery have a different brain structure, are you therefore suggesting this brain structure makes a person feel uncomfortable with a certain bodily appearance? How could a certain structure of the brain make a dislike their perception of their own body? Why should a female brain intrinsically dislike having a male body, or male brain a female body? It seems as though the reasons could only be environmental.
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Soundslikeachair
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#7
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#7
"If I have an internal desire to change my sex because I feel as though I'm 'in the wrong body', this is by definition non-environmental. It's my internal processes and my body".

We really can't confirm that. An internal desire can originate from environmental stimulus, as this shapes our minds, but could also be caused by an inbuilt chemical response. I think we just have to ask, what is more likely? The brain structure instinctively knows what their body should look like (which would mean that if someone were raised to believe that their third arm was completely normal, that they would still question their third arm -- I don't think they would), or someone's attitudes towards their appearance are caused by outside factors? Though, the likely alternative isn't always true. So, as I said, you can't really argue either way without absolute evidence.

"Perhaps their brain is 'wired' to feel as though it should have certain body parts that it doesn't."

As I said, people generally only seem to see something wrong with their body when the exterior stimulus tells them so. The alternative just seems very unlikely.

"One need not be able to answer how something is doing something to know that it's doing something"

True, in this case, knowing the WHAT is sufficient, and understanding the HOW would be unnecessary. The problem is that we still don't know the WHAT. It's not a matter of HOW; the debate as to whether something is caused by environment, or biology, is a debate over description: the WHAT.

We really can have no certainty, either way, just as there can be no certainty when discussing religion. The possibility that a God can exist does not justify a belief in God, nor should the possibility that the brain somehow knows what a person should look like (which just seems a little tenuous an idea), before birth, justify a belief in this rather than the more likely environmental cause.
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BKS
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#8
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#8
I'm not sure it matters.

If someone is trans and they want to medically/legally/socially transition then not being able/allowed to will **** them up. Any sort of therapy to get them to not be trans doesn't work where as letting them transition helps a hell of a lot- that's a fact, it's why that's what the NHS does.

It's better for that individual to be happier and healthier. If that doesn't matter then economically it makes sense too, for the NHS and in terms of productivity.

Even in terms of how we treat people, being trans isn't a choice regardless of what the cause is. You don't hold things people can't help against them, that's just not being a decent person.



As for is it normal, I think the only meaningful definition of normal is typical. Beings trans isn't typical, very few people are. Does that have any sort of philosophical or moral value? I don't think so, it's just a 'fire is hot' type fact
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24yearsSpurs
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#9
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#9
Men and women are psychologically different. This is proven, and it's only hardline feminists who say this is offensive.

And the entire reason for gender reassignment is to treat the distress. Id say it works considering most who transition tend to feel/function better.
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9910224
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#10
Report 6 years ago
#10
(Original post by Soundslikeachair)
What do you think?
As far as medical diagnoses go, psychiatric issues are probably the least clear cut and are as reliant on most recent scientific knowledge as they are on subjective moral-/value-based judgements, the latter of which is probably the reason this ties in so well with the idea of "normality".

For example, things like homosexuality and fetishism would have been diagnosed as illness centuries ago when the western world was predominantly influenced by Christianity. I guess I could go on a tangent here about Foucault and how power determines what is constituted as knowledge, etc. but I don't know Foucault's philosophy deeply enough to elongate a discussion on it. But basically, that's my take on it; the main point here is that mental diagnoses also depend heavily on prevailing social customs and standards.

I think what should constitute as a mental illness/issue is that when something causes significant harm or disadvantage to the person who has it or to other people. (Another example - there are (estimated to be) many people today who are living with autism or are on the autistic spectrum who are left undiagnosed because it does not have a significantly negative effect on their lives.)

As for the male/female issue, surely there's a link to the fact that males have Y chromosomes and females don't, which result in them having their respective sexual organs, reproductive capacities. I think these "natural" biological capacities ultimately affect us as individuals and where we find our niches in the greater collective of society, which I believe is the reason for the established "male" and "female" roles in our society (the human constructs), which I think is what transsexuals feel like they are swimming against. Then you also have this concept of the "male" and "female" identities, which I think (knobs and fannies aside) depends heavily on conceptualised social constructs. That said, I agree with you in that there are ideas about the "male" and "female" which are purely human constructs, but there are biological facts that cannot be ignored.
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24yearsSpurs
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#11
Report 6 years ago
#11
I only answered the OP who questioned the basis for transexuality. I think the basis is valid, and it's only people who dispute male/female differences in any form who say it's not.
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9910224
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#12
Report 6 years ago
#12
Will look this up.

Now you've switched from talking about biological sex to gender. Please make up your mind as to which topic you're trying to discuss. 'Roles' refer to gender, not sex.
Surely, the sex has had influence over "gender" the whole time civilisation's existed?

Are you talking about gender identity or sex identity?
Okay, enlighten me on the differences.

Which biological facts are these? Sex is not binary, there are XX males and XY females, there are various intersex individuals, there are even full hermaphrodites. So which of these biological facts cannot be ignored and are somehow determinitive? Is it the chromosomes? In which case someone who is XY, yet has female genitalia, breasts and a fully functional reproductive system is now male? Or is it their sexual organs? In which case XX person with a penis is a male; and an intersex person is what?
Actually saw this hermaphrodites argument coming. <sigh> I actually know one. I didn't bother factoring it in because I didn't have so much time on my hands on a Monday afternoon to properly dissect it. Also, it's "determinative".

So which political choices and data are you trying to defend here?
Wasn't aware I was defending anything. Thought I had liberty to bounce around ideas in a public forum.
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24yearsSpurs
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#13
Report 6 years ago
#13
Considering we don't know how the brain works fully, how does one explain why pre-transition people act like women or men? And how come these tensions are largely relieved once a person transitions?

The fact there have been and still are some who believe there are no psychological differences between men and women, which is not true, and transexuality disproves that.
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