Author Topic: How to Address Transgender  (Read 10397 times)

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Offline wainscottbl

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How to Address Transgender
« on: June 04, 2014, 06:40:58 PM »
So I always thought transgenders more or less confused, mentally ill persons who thought, for whatever reason, they are actually the other sex. But what of this video. I think the priest makes a good argument but not sure if I am completely with him:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUEh55uM07E

I know Orthodoxy does not have address an issue like this as the Roman Catholic Church does but on abortion for example it's clear that it's wrong. Homosexuality the same. No if, and or but. You don't think sodomy is wrong, you are a heretic. But this transgender issue is complex and this priest did a good job arguing that. On the other hand I read a political article, which I will not post here, that was pretty much polemical. I asked my priest about this video and he is going to look at it he said and get back to me. In the meantime, some talk on the issue.

PS...I judged this issue theological rather than political. So let's keep it thus if we can, discussing it from a religious view. That's why I did not put it in the political forum.
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Offline Maria

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2014, 07:13:30 PM »
If they were to wear a name tag, that would be helpful.

Currently, with unisex dressing, it can be difficult to tell which way a person is heading.
The memory of God should be treasured in our hearts like the precious pearl mentioned in the Holy Gospel. Our life's goal should be to nurture and contemplate God always within, and never let it depart, for this steadfastness will drive demons away from us. - Paraphrased from St. Philotheus of Sinai
Writings from the Philokalia: On Prayer of the Heart,
Translated from the Russian by E. Kadloubovksy and G.E.H. Palmer, Faber and Faber, London, Boston, 1992 printing.

Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2014, 07:33:06 PM »
is this the retired bishop Lazar Puhalo?

in Existentialism, we call this "inauthentic existence."
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 07:39:57 PM by ialmisry »
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Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2014, 08:29:47 PM »
Oh dear, you just dropped a(n Archbishop) Lazar Puhalo link.  This cannot end well.

Edited to add title.  Mor.  

TheTrisagion,

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« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 09:06:20 PM by Mor Ephrem »
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Offline wainscottbl

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2014, 08:47:43 PM »
Oh dear, you just dropped a(n Archbishop) Lazar Puhalo link.  This cannot end well.

Ah, why's that? I did hear bad things about him elsewhere. Something about canonical doubts regarding him....I am guessing he is controversial.

Edited to adjust quote.  Mor.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 09:08:42 PM by Mor Ephrem »
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Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2014, 08:53:24 PM »
Oh dear, you just dropped a(n Archbishop) Lazar Puhalo link.  This cannot end well.

Ah, why's that? I did hear bad things about him elsewhere. Something about canonical doubts regarding him....I am guessing he is controversial.
That would be an understatement.  You can read a bit about him here.

http://orthodoxwiki.org/Lazar_%28Puhalo%29_of_Ottawa

For most of his life, he has bounced around between various schismatic groups.  OCA then took pity on him and took him under their wing. He has caused a lot of controversy there and they have actually forbidden him from speaking about homosexuality which ignores. My personal opinion is that he does have some good things to say, but in order to find them, you have to wade through massive piles of crap.

Edited to adjust quote.  Mor.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 09:09:35 PM by Mor Ephrem »
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Offline wainscottbl

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2014, 09:01:06 PM »
Ah, thanks.
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Offline wainscottbl

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2014, 09:06:59 PM »
I still thought, objectively, he made a lot of good points. It just "opened up my mind" to sound like a moral relativist. Still, my mind leans towards transexualism.
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Offline Maria

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2014, 09:29:07 PM »
I still thought, objectively, he made a lot of good points. It just "opened up my mind" to sound like a moral relativist. Still, my mind leans towards transexualism.

What God has created is good.

Who are we mortals to suggest that God could have done better? That somehow He goofed?

Is Outrage!
The memory of God should be treasured in our hearts like the precious pearl mentioned in the Holy Gospel. Our life's goal should be to nurture and contemplate God always within, and never let it depart, for this steadfastness will drive demons away from us. - Paraphrased from St. Philotheus of Sinai
Writings from the Philokalia: On Prayer of the Heart,
Translated from the Russian by E. Kadloubovksy and G.E.H. Palmer, Faber and Faber, London, Boston, 1992 printing.

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2014, 09:44:52 PM »
There are gynandromorphs, hermaphrodites, etc., not to mention asexual production and all sorts of other diversities. Was this all because of the fall? Would we say anything diverging from a rigid two gender model is a deviation? I dunno.

We are coming to see that many things we used to believe was simply in the mind or soul is perhaps not so easily placed, but actually might have a genetic or physical origin or basis. I was just reading in St. Macarius the other day about how two men feel the same pain, yet one responds in a "manly" way, while another shamefully screams and moans (or something along those lines). Of course today we understand that the two men do not, in fact, feel the pain in the same way, nor is the less "manly" response necessarily from a lack of will power.

Of course that just brings us around to original sin and the fall, creation, how to pastor such people, how to be in their lives, and so forth. And especially, I want to know how to let them know that they are loved, and like all people I want them to find the way to God, even when I'm not sure about anything other than that when it comes to such situations.

Offline Amatorus

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2014, 09:48:39 PM »
Don't Adam and Eve prove there can only be man and woman? I don't know how intersex fit into that though.

Offline therovingmethodist

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2014, 10:20:57 PM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.
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Offline ZealousZeal

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2014, 10:33:22 PM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.

It's not so simple at all, actually:

Quote
During the intrauterine period the fetal brain develops in the male direction through a direct action of testosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hormone surge. In this way, our gender identity (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) is programmed into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. However, since sexual differentiation of the genitals takes place in the first two months of pregnancy and sexual differentiation of the brain starts in the second half of pregnancy, these two processes can be influenced independently, which may result in transsexualism.

I'm not here to say what is right or wrong or what is the result of the Fall and how God feels about any of this. I don't know any of the answers. I just know that biologically, it isn't simple, and there's a reason that the saying "the largest sex organ is your brain" exists.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 10:34:21 PM by ZealousZeal »
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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2014, 10:39:25 PM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.

It's not so simple at all, actually:

Quote
During the intrauterine period the fetal brain develops in the male direction through a direct action of testosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hormone surge. In this way, our gender identity (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) is programmed into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. However, since sexual differentiation of the genitals takes place in the first two months of pregnancy and sexual differentiation of the brain starts in the second half of pregnancy, these two processes can be influenced independently, which may result in transsexualism.

I'm not here to say what is right or wrong or what is the result of the Fall and how God feels about any of this. I don't know any of the answers. I just know that biologically, it isn't simple, and there's a reason that the saying "the largest sex organ is your brain" exists.

Yes, some folks may have two Y Chromosomes, while others may have a strange mixture of multiple X's and Y'x.
What do you call these folks. Certainly they are not transgender, and sadly they usually are afflicted with speech disorders and other significant problems.

If they have extra sexual appendages, their parents may elect to select their sex, but cutting off an appendage does not solve the brain issues.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 10:40:40 PM by Maria »
The memory of God should be treasured in our hearts like the precious pearl mentioned in the Holy Gospel. Our life's goal should be to nurture and contemplate God always within, and never let it depart, for this steadfastness will drive demons away from us. - Paraphrased from St. Philotheus of Sinai
Writings from the Philokalia: On Prayer of the Heart,
Translated from the Russian by E. Kadloubovksy and G.E.H. Palmer, Faber and Faber, London, Boston, 1992 printing.

Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2014, 10:56:33 PM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.

It's not so simple at all, actually:

Quote
During the intrauterine period the fetal brain develops in the male direction through a direct action of testosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hormone surge. In this way, our gender identity (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) is programmed into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. However, since sexual differentiation of the genitals takes place in the first two months of pregnancy and sexual differentiation of the brain starts in the second half of pregnancy, these two processes can be influenced independently, which may result in transsexualism.

I'm not here to say what is right or wrong or what is the result of the Fall and how God feels about any of this. I don't know any of the answers. I just know that biologically, it isn't simple, and there's a reason that the saying "the largest sex organ is your brain" exists.
<95% it is that simple.
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth

Offline ZealousZeal

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #15 on: June 04, 2014, 11:01:01 PM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.

It's not so simple at all, actually:

Quote
During the intrauterine period the fetal brain develops in the male direction through a direct action of testosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hormone surge. In this way, our gender identity (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) is programmed into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. However, since sexual differentiation of the genitals takes place in the first two months of pregnancy and sexual differentiation of the brain starts in the second half of pregnancy, these two processes can be influenced independently, which may result in transsexualism.

I'm not here to say what is right or wrong or what is the result of the Fall and how God feels about any of this. I don't know any of the answers. I just know that biologically, it isn't simple, and there's a reason that the saying "the largest sex organ is your brain" exists.
<95% it is that simple.

Sure, for most people the appropriate hormone surges happen at the appropriate times and our brains match our genitals. But in the case of someone who had the early hormone surge to end up with male genitalia and not the second surge to end up with a male differentiated brain, it isn't as simple as telling them "You have a Y chromosome, end of story." They literally feel like a female trapped in a male's body.
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Offline therovingmethodist

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #16 on: June 04, 2014, 11:02:29 PM »
Someone may have multiple Y's or no Y's, but having all Y's is fatal. High School heredity 101 right there.
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Offline wainscottbl

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #17 on: June 04, 2014, 11:05:09 PM »
I may have done scandal to the Church by showing a traditional Roman Catholic the video--Lord have mercy. I did explain the situation with the bishop in the video after that. She said:

Quote
@Brandon: I wouldn't trust any religious discussing transgender unless I knew he was condemning it.

I explained that I learned a lot because he does make a good argument, even it it is wrong. This all started because of an article she posted, to which I responded. The article was polemic and not even funny in my opinion. I wanted to explain to her it is hard for a Roman Catholic to understand that Eastern Orthodox looks at evil differently, not so much in a way of condemning some transgression as rather addressing an illness. Instead I simply said it's a complex issue and I cannot know what these people who suffer with transgender suffer. It ended there.

Transgender may be an illness in genetics, I suppose, and that is what I mean by evil--physical evil, like anything like that in nature that goes awry . I just don't understand it. I just thought it was some mentally ill person like Buffalo Bill in Silence of Lambs who likes to dress like the opposite sex. Someone who has deep rooted issues with their sexual identity but is clearly male or female. A sodomite in other words. But Orthodoxy has taught me to think more objectively and in a less condemning manner. In the end transexuality may be wrong. I don't know. I am not educated on the issue and I pretty much told her she is not either. Some people here seem to be.

« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 11:06:40 PM by wainscottbl »
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Offline Ferd Berfel

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #18 on: June 05, 2014, 03:06:32 AM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.

Offline Arachne

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #19 on: June 05, 2014, 08:58:31 AM »
There are several documented cases like that one, Ferd. Even famous ones, like Stanisława Walasiewicz and Ewa Kłobukowska.

Before tackling any issues with transgenderism, it's useful to know a few things about being intersex:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intersex
« Last Edit: June 05, 2014, 08:59:08 AM by Arachne »
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Offline Alpo

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #20 on: June 05, 2014, 09:35:02 AM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.

Chromosomes define our sex. Gender is a whole another thing.
But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.
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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #21 on: June 05, 2014, 09:43:14 AM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.
Gender is a whole another thing.

That's nonsense. Sex and gender are the same thing.

Offline IoanC

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #22 on: June 05, 2014, 09:59:01 AM »
As an illness. Love and care for the person affected will lead to deeply understanding the problem and relating to it with patience. There is no successful formulaic approach and definitely not one that excludes genuine love and care.

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #23 on: June 05, 2014, 10:08:00 AM »
For me it's very simple-either you have the Y chromosome or you don't.
Gender is a whole another thing.

That's nonsense. Sex and gender are the same thing.

There other kinds of stories too. You've been called effeminate here for liking fine clothes.
But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.
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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #24 on: June 05, 2014, 10:16:01 AM »
I still thought, objectively, he made a lot of good points. It just "opened up my mind" to sound like a moral relativist. Still, my mind leans towards transexualism.

What God has created is good.

Who are we mortals to suggest that God could have done better? That somehow He goofed?

Is Outrage!


Does God create the flesh also or only the soul? Isn't the flesh born out of concupiscence?

I thought the proceeding of our race has more to do with concupiscence than God. At least that's what I get from some theologians who say that the Ancestral Sin is passed through concupiscence and it is not that God imposes a sin to us.

Some of this gay/transgedered would of swear they were born this way. Some would even say they are females trapped in man bodies.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2014, 10:18:31 AM by Dan-Romania »
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #25 on: June 05, 2014, 10:24:43 AM »
I still thought, objectively, he made a lot of good points. It just "opened up my mind" to sound like a moral relativist. Still, my mind leans towards transexualism.

What God has created is good.

Who are we mortals to suggest that God could have done better? That somehow He goofed?

Is Outrage!


Does God create the flesh also or only the soul? Isn't the flesh born out of concupiscence?

I thought the proceeding of our race has more to do with concupiscence than God. At least that's what I get from some theologians who say that the Ancestral Sin is passed through concupiscence and it is not that God imposes a sin to us.

Some of this gay/transgedered would of swear they were born this way. Some would even say they are females trapped in man bodies.
I'm a lesbian trapped in a man's body.
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
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Offline Dan-Romania

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #26 on: June 05, 2014, 10:35:46 AM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


The question is if God doesn't allow it or approve it or whatever, than why do such things and people exist?
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #27 on: June 05, 2014, 10:37:14 AM »
There are several documented cases like that one, Ferd. Even famous ones, like Stanisława Walasiewicz and Ewa Kłobukowska.

Before tackling any issues with transgenderism, it's useful to know a few things about being intersex:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intersex
one thing to know:we are, at the very most, talking about <2% of the population.

Btw, I heard recently in passing that a large number (I think it was 80%, but I didn't hear it that well) of sex changes operations, afterwards the person switches back.
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth

Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #28 on: June 05, 2014, 10:37:48 AM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


The question is if God doesn't allow it or approve it or whatever, than why do such things and people exist?
the Fall.
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth

Offline Dan-Romania

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #29 on: June 05, 2014, 10:43:15 AM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


The question is if God doesn't allow it or approve it or whatever, than why do such things and people exist?
the Fall.

explain
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #30 on: June 05, 2014, 10:50:55 AM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


The question is if God doesn't allow it or approve it or whatever, than why do such things and people exist?
the Fall.

explain
That is the source of all disease and abnormality.  As for gender "since the beginning He made them male and female."  We have that from the Creator's mouth.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2014, 10:51:28 AM by ialmisry »
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #31 on: June 05, 2014, 10:51:45 AM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


The question is if God doesn't allow it or approve it or whatever, than why do such things and people exist?
the Fall.

explain

The fall of Adam and Eve.

God created us perfect....but, due to the Fall....we now live in an imperfect world.

Why blame God?

Perhaps these mental, or even chromosomal anomalies are occurring from environmental conditions that we, humans, have created.

Perhaps it is all the smog we inhale, the pesticides we ingest, etc.

You have to admit, that while the claim is that these situations existed in bygone days, there are way more prevalent these days.

Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
—St. Isaac of Syria

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #32 on: June 05, 2014, 10:52:28 AM »
I still thought, objectively, he made a lot of good points. It just "opened up my mind" to sound like a moral relativist. Still, my mind leans towards transexualism.

What God has created is good.

Who are we mortals to suggest that God could have done better? That somehow He goofed?

Is Outrage!


Does God create the flesh also or only the soul? Isn't the flesh born out of concupiscence?

I thought the proceeding of our race has more to do with concupiscence than God. At least that's what I get from some theologians who say that the Ancestral Sin is passed through concupiscence and it is not that God imposes a sin to us.

Some of this gay/transgedered would of swear they were born this way. Some would even say they are females trapped in man bodies.
I'm a lesbian trapped in a man's body.

LOL!!! 
Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
—St. Isaac of Syria

Offline Theophania

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #33 on: June 05, 2014, 10:52:59 AM »
I don't think they're necessarily more prevalent - more likely that people are just more open about it now.
It's common knowledge that you secretly want to be born in early 17th century Russia.  As a serf or a royal, I know not.  Chances are serf.

Offline mabsoota

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #34 on: June 05, 2014, 11:14:54 AM »
nearly all people who consider themselves transgender these days have normal physical chromosomes and gender.
we are confusing 2 separate issues.

for the tiny proportion of 'transgender' people who are actually intersex, they can request spiritual help to choose which gender to be assigned to.

for the rest, they have had issues in life which made them unhappy with their physical gender, and spiritual help for them in relating to the source of life will help them to address those issues.

for all there is a solution, but not always an easy solution. God loves all people, may He guide us to give loving and clear help to those who need it.

Offline Dan-Romania

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #35 on: June 05, 2014, 11:19:51 AM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


The question is if God doesn't allow it or approve it or whatever, than why do such things and people exist?
the Fall.

explain
That is the source of all disease and abnormality.  As for gender "since the beginning He made them male and female."  We have that from the Creator's mouth.

What is 'normality' ? How does the soul and the body come together? Why does God allow hermaphrodites, intersex people or people with chromosomes with extra/less X or Y chromosomes or people like this
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


to be born this way if he doesn't approve them or if it is sin? Is that a punishment from God? What are such persons to do "from the theological moralistic p.o.v" with their tendencies and sexuality?

How do you interpret 'at the resurrection they will not marry but be like the angels of God in heaven' ?
« Last Edit: June 05, 2014, 11:20:59 AM by Dan-Romania »
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Offline Dan-Romania

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #36 on: June 05, 2014, 11:31:55 AM »
I still thought, objectively, he made a lot of good points. It just "opened up my mind" to sound like a moral relativist. Still, my mind leans towards transexualism.

What God has created is good.

Who are we mortals to suggest that God could have done better? That somehow He goofed?

Is Outrage!

Where does the soul come? What about the body? What about this intersex people, why do they exist?
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #37 on: June 05, 2014, 12:04:56 PM »
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


The question is if God doesn't allow it or approve it or whatever, than why do such things and people exist?
the Fall.

explain
That is the source of all disease and abnormality.  As for gender "since the beginning He made them male and female."  We have that from the Creator's mouth.

What is 'normality' ? How does the soul and the body come together? Why does God allow hermaphrodites, intersex people or people with chromosomes with extra/less X or Y chromosomes or people like this
Both questions have already been answered above.  The answers won't change no matter how much you repeat the question.
The thing that helped me understand the complexity of this issue was a documentary that I watched some time ago. I don’t remember the name of the documentary, unfortunately; but I do remember the content.

The story followed a lesbian lady in her 30’s that had a number of medical issues. She spent years going to various doctors because of hormonal problems and some other things. Apparently, no one had done any sort of genetic testing on her until she was around 32 years old. Essentially, they found out that she was actually a “he”. She was born with XY chromosomes, but had never actually developed male sex organs. For some reason, during her development in utero, she had never received the hormone surges that cause gender differentiation. She was born with female sex organs, but a very underdeveloped uterus and a severe lack of estrogen.

She never went through puberty, and always wondered why she looked very boyish in her appearance. She was also not attracted to men, but to women. The discovery of her chromosome problem was a tremendous blow. She had lived her entire life as a woman, only to find out that she was genetically a male.

This underscores how difficult this issue is. It’s not just a matter of some dude waking up one day and deciding to be a woman instead; it carries a lot of weight and sometimes can be related to very rare and serious genetic abnormalities.

Anyway, I’m not sure I know enough about this to give any sort of religious perspective. I’m certainly not knowledgeable enough to give an Orthodox perspective. All I can say is that this is a very difficult issue to address and that we should probably be careful to not paint with broad strokes without considering some of the finer details.


to be born this way if he doesn't approve them or if it is sin? Is that a punishment from God? What are such persons to do "from the theological moralistic p.o.v" with their tendencies and sexuality?

How do you interpret 'at the resurrection they will not marry but be like the angels of God in heaven' ?
if you didn't marry on earth, you won't marry in heaven.

your other reiteration of the question came up recently-John 9:2-3, 34.
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #38 on: June 05, 2014, 12:08:26 PM »
To me, what's interesting about the transgender concept is how incompatible it is with the idea that gender is a social construct. Yet the Left promotes both ideas at the same time, suggesting they haven't really thought through the implications of either.

I know there were some female saints who pretended to be men so they could pass as monks. Strictly speaking, that's just transvestitism, since as far as we know from their lives, they always felt themselves to be women and just pretended to be men. I kind of wonder whether they also happened to feel themselves to be men and that was why they sought to be monks in a male monastery but that such a strange idea never made it into their story. But that's just speculation on my part.

Offline mabsoota

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #39 on: June 05, 2014, 12:26:35 PM »
in those days there were not many female monasteries.

as for people born intersex, certainly God has a plan for those people.
He wants them to come to Him for salvation and know His love.
as for sexual love, there will be some of them (i speculate) who can be assigned a gender and marry as normal (though maybe not reproduce, in the same way many people of more obvious gender can be infertile too). others will be single or monastic in the same way many people of more obvious gender are sometimes single or monastic.

Offline Arachne

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #40 on: June 05, 2014, 12:42:40 PM »
I know personally three intersex people. Two have Kleinfelter's syndrome (the commonest chromosomic disorder after Down), the third is a 'true hermaphrodite'. I don't care how rare their conditions are; they are people, not numbers.

The two Kleinfelters were assigned male at birth, and both identify as female as adults; I feel that, if sex has to be assigned by some human authority (doctors and/or parents), then another human authority (the child, once grown/aware) has every right to reassign it, if they feel it is wrong.

Through such contacts I've come to understand that so-called gender dysphoria often has little to do with sexual activity itself. Some sex-ambiguous people are asexual, others have no interest in surgery, knowing that, with or without it, their bodies will never look as they wish they did. It is much more about the gender roles they are called to fulfil: things like whether they are addressed as 'Sir' or 'Madam' and which public restrooms they get to use.
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #41 on: June 05, 2014, 12:57:56 PM »
I know personally three intersex people. Two have Kleinfelter's syndrome (the commonest chromosomic disorder after Down), the third is a 'true hermaphrodite'. I don't care how rare their conditions are; they are people, not numbers.
The foolish notion of redefining the 98% doesn't make them more a person.

The two Kleinfelters were assigned male at birth, and both identify as female as adults; I feel that, if sex has to be assigned by some human authority (doctors and/or parents), then another human authority (the child, once grown/aware) has every right to reassign it, if they feel it is wrong.
Who said there was any 'right' to assign, let alone 'reassign'?

btw, they are "two persons with Kleinfelters" not "two Kleinfelters."  And the Y chromonsome they have does the assigning.  Hence the term "XXY males", or "47,XXY males" for the men who have the syndrome.

Through such contacts I've come to understand that so-called gender dysphoria often has little to do with sexual activity itself. Some sex-ambiguous people are asexual, others have no interest in surgery, knowing that, with or without it, their bodies will never look as they wish they did.
They are alone in this?

It is much more about the gender roles they are called to fulfil: things like whether they are addressed as 'Sir' or 'Madam' and which public restrooms they get to use.
how many women can use a urinal?
Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
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If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
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Offline Arachne

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #42 on: June 05, 2014, 01:06:27 PM »
I know personally three intersex people. Two have Kleinfelter's syndrome (the commonest chromosomic disorder after Down), the third is a 'true hermaphrodite'. I don't care how rare their conditions are; they are people, not numbers.
The foolish notion of redefining the 98% doesn't make them more a person.

Who redefined what? I just can't buy into the '1/1000 is negligible' after meeting those people.

The two Kleinfelters were assigned male at birth, and both identify as female as adults; I feel that, if sex has to be assigned by some human authority (doctors and/or parents), then another human authority (the child, once grown/aware) has every right to reassign it, if they feel it is wrong.
Who said there was any 'right' to assign, let alone 'reassign'?

Take that one up with the medical establishment.

btw, they are "two persons with Kleinfelters" not "two Kleinfelters."  And the Y chromonsome they have does the assigning.  Hence the term "XXY males", or "47,XXY males" for the men who have the syndrome.

They also have two X's. They are called 'males' because their phenotype is usually towards the masculine end, though not exclusively. (One of my friends, you literally can't tell, voice and all. She'd make a fine contralto, or countertenor.)

Through such contacts I've come to understand that so-called gender dysphoria often has little to do with sexual activity itself. Some sex-ambiguous people are asexual, others have no interest in surgery, knowing that, with or without it, their bodies will never look as they wish they did.
They are alone in this?

Does it matter?

It is much more about the gender roles they are called to fulfil: things like whether they are addressed as 'Sir' or 'Madam' and which public restrooms they get to use.
how many women can use a urinal?

Don't men's restrooms have stalls over there?
'Evil isn't the real threat to the world. Stupid is just as destructive as evil, maybe more so, and it's a hell of a lot more common. What we really need is a crusade against stupid. That might actually make a difference.'~Harry Dresden

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Offline Didyma

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #43 on: June 05, 2014, 01:16:33 PM »
I've been thinking more about this issue lately because of someone I know - a young woman who identifies as a man.  She's started to take testosterone, the effects of which I believe are irreversible.  What she has is a disorder and shouldn't even exist in a good world, but how should it really be addressed?

On one hand, there is the possibility that it is because her brain is really "male" (whatever that means, if it means anything) because of a dysfunctional prenatal development, though I think a lot of people falsely attribute their problems to this disorder these days.

On the other, her body is that of a woman, with perfectly fine sexual organs as far as  I know (perhaps less so now because of the hormones she's taking).  She will never look fully male, and even if she did she would never have a man's organs.  The surgery can't give her a man's genitals, only remove her own and make it look somewhat like she's been a man all along.  What right does a doctor, having taken the Hippocratic Oath to "do no harm," have to mutilate perfectly fine organs to *maybe, maybe not* help the patient cope with a disorder?  At least one major doctor specializing in this has concluded that the surgery often makes the patient's torment worse and that it is unethical.  (The one that ran the Hopkins medical complex, I believe). 

Will referring to transgendered people by their preferred pronouns and names make the situation worse, or better?  To what extent should one comply with their masquerade?  These are questions I wish I knew the answer to, but it may not happen in the near future due to the serious stigma placed on scientists wishing to investigate LGBT-related matters as anything less than perfect and normal.  At any rate, God is merciful and knows the truth, whatever that may be.
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Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: How to Address Transgender
« Reply #44 on: June 05, 2014, 01:20:37 PM »
Well one thing I know is that the Church is (in principle) opposed to medically unnecessary surgery and body modification, so surgically altering your body and pumping yourself full of testosterone or estrogen, as the case may be, is a very radical and potentially spiritually damaging act in response to one's subjective feelings about which gender one belongs to. If the problem is a mismatch between mind and body, why are we focusing the solution on "fixing" the body rather than fixing the mind? Or maybe there is nothing to fix and there are other ways to deal with the issue?

I suspect in former times the few individuals who found themselves in such a predicament would simply reject marriage and the requirement to fit into worldly gender roles and become monks or nuns, even saints.