| Part of a series on|
|Spectra and binaries|
Gender dysphoria (sometimes but not preferably gender identity disorder) is felt by individuals who experience significant discontent from their gender assigned at birth. It is also a formal psychological and psychiatric diagnosis. Not all authorities classify this as a mental illness; the National Health Service in the United Kingdom describes it as "a condition for which medical treatment is appropriate in some cases."
Recent research has indicated that transgender people tend to have the same or similar brain structures as their identified gender, even before hormone replacement, thus giving credence to the fact that gender and sex are innately connected rather than being a social construction. Possible causes of gender dysphoria include genetic reasons and prenatal exposure to particular hormones, among others.
As a minor concession to the trans community, in response to complaints that "gender identity disorder" was a stigmatizing term, the American Psychiatric Association changed the "Gender Identity Disorder" diagnostic category in the DSM-5 to "Gender Dysphoria" in 2013. The APA, as well as the larger Western healthcare structures, remains highly conservative on the issue, to the point that there are thriving black and grey markets for prescription hormones and some cosmetic treatments. Some clinics have sought to move past this issue by offering "informed consent" prescriptions, for which a psychiatric diagnosis is not required.
Gender dysphoria described by trans people
If you're wearing comfortable shoes, you don't spend all your time thinking about how your feet don't hurt. But if you're wearing uncomfortable shoes...ow, ow, ow.
As body horror
Some male assigned at birth individuals who feel dysphoric about their genitals describe the feeling as having a big raw chicken stapled between one's legs.
Similarly, a female assigned at birth individual with body-related gender dysphoria once described the experience of having breasts as having two alien jellyfish constantly suctioned onto one's chest.
Try imagining how that must feel.
Misconception with body dysphoria
Many people with gender dysphoria even LGBT organisations mistake gender dysphoria with body dysphoria. They are two vastly different things. This can lead to people getting wrong information on body dysphoria which can be terrible. Body dysphoria is a mental illness where the sufferer is extremely anxious about their appearance. This can very debilitating and can interfere greatly with life. Gender dysphoria on the other hand is a disorder of the mismatch of biological sex to gender that causes extreme stress, and discomfort.
- Gender Identity Disorder Today DSM IV Gender Identity Disorder
- "Transgender experiences – Information and support"
- Transsexual differences caught on brain scan
- Male-to-Female Transsexuals Have Female Neuron Numbers in a Limbic Nucleus
- DSM-V revision fact sheet