Answers to your questions about transgender people, gender identity, and gender expression (2022)

What is the difference between sex and gender?

Sex is assigned at birth, refers to one’s biological status as either male or female, and is associated primarily with physical attributes such as chromosomes, hormone prevalence, and external and internal anatomy. Gender refers to the socially constructed roles, behaviors, activities, and attributes that a given society considers appropriate for boys and men or girls and women. These influence the ways that people act, interact, and feel about themselves. While aspects of biological sex are similar across different cultures, aspects of gender may differ.

Various conditions that lead to atypical development of physical sex characteristics are collectively referred to as intersex conditions.

Have transgender people always existed?

Transgender persons have been documented in many indigenous, Western, and Eastern cultures and societies from antiquity until the present day. However, the meaning of gender nonconformity may vary from culture to culture.

What are some categories or types of transgender people?

Many identities fall under the transgender umbrella. The term transsexual refers to people whose gender identity is different from their assigned sex. Often, transsexual people alter or wish to alter their bodies through hormones, surgery, and other means to make their bodies as congruent as possible with their gender identities. This process of transition through medical intervention is often referred to as sex or gender reassignment, but more recently is also referred to as gender affirmation. People who were assigned female, but identify and live as male and alter or wish to alter their bodies through medical intervention to more closely resemble their gender identity are known as transsexual men or transmen (also known as female-to-male or FTM). Conversely, people who were assigned male, but identify and live as female and alter or wish to alter their bodies through medical intervention to more closely resemble their gender identity are known as transsexual women or transwomen (also known as male-to-female or MTF). Some individuals who transition from one gender to another prefer to be referred to as a man or a woman, rather than as transgender.

People who cross-dress wear clothing that is traditionally or stereotypically worn by another gender in their culture. They vary in how completely they cross-dress, from one article of clothing to fully cross-dressing. Those who cross-dress are usually comfortable with their assigned sex and do not wish to change it. Cross-dressing is a form of gender expression and is not necessarily tied to erotic activity. Cross-dressing is not indicative of sexual orientation. (See Answers to Your Questions: For a Better Understanding of Sexual Orientation and Homosexualityfor more information on sexual orientation.) The degree of societal acceptance for cross-dressing varies for males and females. In some cultures, one gender may be given more latitude than another for wearing clothing associated with a different gender.

The term drag queens generally refers to men who dress as women for the purpose of entertaining others at bars, clubs, or other events. The term drag kings refers to women who dress as men for the purpose of entertaining others at bars, clubs, or other events.

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Genderqueer is a term that some people use who identify their gender as falling outside the binary constructs of “male” and “female.” They may define their gender as falling somewhere on a continuum between male and female, or they may define it as wholly different from these terms. They may also request that pronouns be used to refer to them that are neither masculine nor feminine, such as “zie” instead of “he” or “she,” or “hir” instead of “his” or “her.” Some genderqueer people do not identify as transgender.

Other categories of transgender people include androgynous, multigendered, gender nonconforming, third gender, and two-spirit people. Exact definitions of these terms vary from person to person and may change over time, but often include a sense of blending or alternating genders. Some people who use these terms to describe themselves see traditional, binary concepts of gender as restrictive.

Why are some people transgender?

There is no single explanation for why some people are transgender. The diversity of transgender expression and experiences argues against any simple or unitary explanation. Many experts believe that biological factors such as genetic influences and prenatal hormone levels, early experiences, and experiences later in adolescence or adulthood may all contribute to the development of transgender identities.

How prevalent are transgender people?

It is difficult to accurately estimate the number of transgender people, mostly because there are no population studies that accurately and completely account for the range of gender identity and gender expression.

What is the relationship between gender identity and sexual orientation?

Gender identity and sexual orientation are not the same. Sexual orientation refers to an individual’s enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction to another person, whereas gender identity refers to one’s internal sense of being male, female, or something else. Transgender people may be straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, or asexual, just as nontransgender people can be. Some recent research has shown that a change or a new exploration period in partner attraction may occur during the process of transition. However, transgender people usually remain as attached to loved ones after transition as they were before transition. Transgender people usually label their sexual orientation using their gender as a reference. For example, a transgender woman, or a person who is assigned male at birth and transitions to female, who is attracted to other women would be identified as a lesbian or gay woman. Likewise, a transgender man, or a person who is assigned female at birth and transitions to male, who is attracted to other men would be identified as a gay man.

How does someone know that they are transgender?

Transgender people experience their transgender identity in a variety of ways and may become aware of their transgender identity at any age. Some can trace their transgender identities and feelings back to their earliest memories. They may have vague feelings of “not fitting in” with people of their assigned sex or specific wishes to be something other than their assigned sex. Others become aware of their transgender identities or begin to explore and experience gender-nonconforming attitudes and behaviors during adolescence or much later in life. Some embrace their transgender feelings, while others struggle with feelings of shame or confusion. Those who transition later in life may have struggled to fit in adequately as their assigned sex only to later face dissatisfaction with their lives. Some transgender people, transsexuals in particular, experience intense dissatisfaction with their sex assigned at birth, physical sex characteristics, or the gender role associated with that sex. These individuals often seek gender-affirming treatments.

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What should parents do if their child appears to be transgender or gender nonconforming?

Parents may be concerned about a child who appears to be gender-nonconforming for a variety of reasons. Some children express a great deal of distress about their assigned sex at birth or the gender roles they are expected to follow. Some children experience difficult social interactions with peers and adults because of their gender expression. Parents may become concerned when what they believed to be a “phase” does not pass. Parents of gender-nonconforming children may need to work with schools and other institutions to address their children’s particular needs and ensure their children’s safety. It is helpful to consult with mental health and medical professionals familiar with gender issues in children to decide how to best address these concerns. It is not helpful to force the child to act in a more gender-conforming way. Peer support from other parents of gender-nonconforming children may also be helpful.

How do transgender individuals make a gender transition?

Transitioning from one gender to another is a complex process and may involve transition to a gender that is neither traditionally male nor female. People who transition often start by expressing their preferred gender in situations where they feel safe. They typically work up to living full time as members of their preferred gender by making many changes a little at a time. While there is no “right” way to transition genders, there are some common social changes transgender people experience that may involve one or more of the following: adopting the appearance of the desired sex through changes in clothing and grooming, adopting a new name, changing sex designation on identity documents (if possible), using hormone therapy treatment, and/or undergoing medical procedures that modify their body to conform with their gender identity.

Every transgender person’s process or transition differs. Because of this, many factors may determine how the individual wishes to live and express their gender identity. Finding a qualified mental health professional who is experienced in providing affirmative care for transgender people is an important first step. A qualified professional can provide guidance and referrals to other helping professionals. Connecting with other transgender people through peer support groups and transgender community organizations is also helpful.

The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), a professional organization devoted to the treatment of transgender people, publishes The Standards of Care for Gender Identity Disorders, which offers recommendations for the provision of gender affirmation procedures and services.

Is being transgender a mental disorder?

A psychological state is considered a mental disorder only if it causes significant distress or disability. Many transgender people do not experience their gender as distressing or disabling, which implies that identifying as transgender does not constitute a mental disorder. For these individuals, the significant problem is finding affordable resources, such as counseling, hormone therapy, medical procedures and the social support necessary to freely express their gender identity and minimize discrimination. Many other obstacles may lead to distress, including a lack of acceptance within society, direct or indirect experiences with discrimination, or assault. These experiences may lead many transgender people to suffer with anxiety, depression or related disorders at higher rates than nontransgender persons.

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), people who experience intense, persistent gender incongruence can be given the diagnosis of "gender dysphoria." Some contend that the diagnosis inappropriately pathologizes gender noncongruence and should be eliminated. Others argue that it is essential to retain the diagnosis to ensure access to care. The International Classification of Diseases (ICD)is under revision and there may be changes to its current classification of intense persistent gender incongruence as "gender identity disorder."

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What kinds of discrimination do transgender people face?

Anti-discrimination laws in most U.S. cities and states do not protect transgender people from discrimination based on gender identity or gender expression. Consequently, transgender people in most cities and states face discrimination in nearly every aspect of their lives. The National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force released a report in 2011 entitled Injustice at Every Turn, which confirmed the pervasive and severe discrimination faced by transgender people. Out of a sample of nearly 6,500 transgender people, the report found that transgender people experience high levels of discrimination in employment, housing, health care, education, legal systems, and even in their families.

Transgender people may also have additional identities that may affect the types of discrimination they experience. Groups with such additional identities include transgender people of racial, ethnic, or religious minority backgrounds; transgender people of lower socioeconomic statuses; transgender people with disabilities; transgender youth; transgender elderly; and others. Experiencing discrimination may cause significant amounts of psychological stress, often leaving transgender individuals to wonder whether they were discriminated against because of their gender identity or gender expression, another sociocultural identity, or some combination of all of these.

According to the study, while discrimination is pervasive for the majority of transgender people, the intersection of anti-transgender bias and persistent, structural racism is especially severe. People of color in general fare worse than White transgender people, with African American transgender individuals faring far worse than all other transgender populations examined.

Many transgender people are the targets of hate crimes. They are also the victims of subtle discrimination—which includes everything from glances or glares of disapproval or discomfort to invasive questions about their body parts.

How can I be supportive of transgender family members, friends, or significant others?

  • Educate yourself about transgender issues by reading books, attending conferences, and consulting with transgender experts. Be aware of your attitudes concerning people with gender-nonconforming appearance or behavior.

  • Know that transgender people have membership in various sociocultural identity groups (e.g., race, social class, religion, age, disability, etc.) and there is not one universal way to look or be transgender.

  • Use names and pronouns that are appropriate to the person’s gender presentation and identity; if in doubt, ask.

  • Don’t make assumptions about transgender people’s sexual orientation, desire for hormonal or medical treatment, or other aspects of their identity or transition plans. If you have a reason to know (e.g., you are a physician conducting a necessary physical exam or you are a person who is interested in dating someone that you’ve learned is transgender), ask.

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  • Don’t confuse gender nonconformity with being transgender. Not all people who appear androgynous or gender nonconforming identify as transgender or desire gender affirmation treatment.

  • Keep the lines of communication open with the transgender person in your life.

  • Get support in processing your own reactions. It can take some time to adjust to seeing someone you know well transitioning. Having someone close to you transition will be an adjustment and can be challenging, especially for partners, parents, and children.

  • Seek support in dealing with your feelings. You are not alone. Mental health professionals and support groups for family, friends, and significant others of transgender people can be useful resources.

  • Advocate for transgender rights, including social and economic justice and appropriate psychological care.Familiarize yourself with the local and state or provincial laws that protect transgender people from discrimination.

Where can I find more information about transgender health, advocacy and human rights?


People who are transgender come from all walks of life. Yet they are some of the most disadvantaged individuals in society. Trans people routinely experience discrimination, harassment and even violence because their gender identity or gender expression is different from their birth-assigned sex.

Gender identity is each person’s internal and individual sense of being a woman, a man, both, neither, or anywhere along the gender spectrum.. The Code does not specify the use of any particular pronoun or other terminology.. As one human rights tribunal said: “Gender …may be the most significant factor in a person’s identity.. Refusing to refer to a trans person by their chosen name and a personal pronoun that matches their gender identity, or purposely misgendering, will likely be discrimination when it takes place in a social area covered by the Code , including employment, housing and services like education.. Some people may not know how to determine what pronoun to use.. The Supreme Court has also found that some limits on free speech are justifiable to protect people from harassment and discrimination in social areas like employment and services.. The OHRC does not have a mandate to deal with individual complaints or to make decisions about alleged violations of the Code .. The OHRC’s Policy on preventing discrimination because of gender identity and gender expression is based on the Code and case law.. [5] For example, discriminatory or harassing comments made directly to someone who is receiving a service or in their employment are likely to be limited by human rights protections ( Taylor-Baptiste v. Ontario Public Service Employees Union , 2013 HRTO 180 (CanLII) at para.. The HRTO balanced the competing rights at issue (freedom of expression and association and equality) to determine the scope of the Code’s protection in the circumstances.

Here's help talking to children about gender identity, supporting their gender expression and advocating for them.

Understand the importance of talking with your child about gender identity and expression — and how to get the conversation started.. If your child has questions about gender identity or gender expression, you've probably got questions, too.. A child's gender identity isn't always indicative of one particular gender expression, and a child's gender expression isn't always indicative of the child's gender identity.. If your child is persistent about gender identity feelings, listen.. Don't prevent your child from expressing gender in public or at family activities to avoid it making you or someone else uncomfortable.. Don't try to shame or punish the gender expression out of your child.. Don't belittle or ridicule your child's gender expression or allow others in your family to do so.. Speak positively about your child to your child and to others.. A child living with supportive parents and caregivers is likely to be a happier child.. Talk to your child's doctor about your child's gender identity and behaviors and ask for help.. Ask your child's doctor to help you find a counselor with training in transgender needs to work with your child.. Whatever your child's gender identity, do your homework and seek appropriate care.

There isn't one way or a right way to be nonbinary. Being nonbinary is about knowing yourself and doing what's right for you.

These groupings are often binary in nature, meaning that they relate to or involve two things.. Nonbinary is both an umbrella term encompassing many gender identities and a singular gender identity label.. As a singular gender identity, nonbinary describes genders that exist outside of the binary, or that can’t be described as exclusively woman or man.. Although the term nonbinary has become more commonly used in the past decade, nonbinary identities and nonbinary people have been around for centuries.. Anyone whose gender identity or experience can’t be exclusively captured by using the terms “man” or “woman” can identify as nonbinary.. Some nonbinary people feel that gender-neutral language is more affirming of their gender, while others use both gender-neutral and binary language to describe and affirm who they are.. Some nonbinary people don’t use any pronouns at all.. The umbrella term nonbinary includes gender identities such as genderqueer and genderfluid, which results in some overlap and similarities among the terms.. It often involves the experience of moving between genders or having a gender or presentation that changes over a particular period of time.. Unlike nonbinary, gender fluid conveys specific information about the evolving nature of gender over time.. Nonbinary gender might be for you if you:. resonate with any of the above experience your gender as both masculine and feminine don’t identify with the sex-based categories or gender expectations assigned to you. Nonbinary gender provides people with a space to explore and actualize an identity and expression in a way that feels aligned with their core sense of self.. Sometimes people identify with the term nonbinary in the longer term, while others identify with it for a period of time in the process of exploring or understanding their gender with greater clarity.. People typically share when they’re ready and will let you know if they want you to inform or correct others.

Looking critically at gender can allow teachers to have broader perceptions and interpretations of daily classroom events, thereby allowing children more space as they develop their gender identities.

During the past 10 years of teaching in the early childhood field, I have observed young children as they develop ideas about gender identity.. Many factors influence children’s learning experiences in the early childhood classroom.. The logs were like those they had been gathering on our field trip when they tried to make fire, while the hand tools suggested new ways to transform the wood.. When I later reflected, however, I realized that Ella had noticed I was observing this group of boys and their rough play with the dolls.. The data samples in this section suggest that the type of materials offered to children may provoke them to assume roles that are more or less stereotypical and could thereby influence their social interactions and learning.. The first event took place at school and the second on a field trip.. I began this study wondering how I might offer young children more opportunities to act outside of traditional gender roles.. However, such subjectivity is inherent in teacher research and considered an advantage of the methodology, as it offers an honest insider’s perspective of a practitioner in action (Meier & Henderson 2007).. According to Meier and Henderson (2007), “Since early childhood is the foundation for young children’s views and experiences with getting along with one another, and with understanding and taking a stance toward the world of relationships, a focus in teacher research on social justice will deepen our character/social curriculum” (178).. I hope this study encourages other early childhood teachers to question gender issues that they might have otherwise accepted at face value.. Field Notes: Gender Identity and Expression in the Early Childhood Classroom. Mason watches with interest while Peter and Robby play with the two baby dolls, which they have brought over.. “Can you think of a way for Cora to play?” I ask.

First, let’s start off with the most frequently asked questions about Personal Gender Pronouns (PGPs).

Taking an active role in your classes, you may hear one of your students using the wrong pronoun for someone.. It may be appropriate to approach them and say something like “I noticed that you were getting referred to with the wrong pronoun earlier, and I know that that can be really hurtful.. You can’t always know what someone’s pronouns are by looking at them.. When someone is referred to with the wrong pronoun, it can make them feel disrespected, invalidated, dismissed, alienated, or dysphoric ( often all of the above).. This is a pretty common gender-neutral pronoun and it can be used in the singular.. Ze/hir/hir (Tyler ate hir food because ze was hungry.). Do not refer to a person as “it” or “he-she”.. A pronoun is a word that refers to either the people talking (“I” or “you”) or someone or something that is being talked about (like “she”, “it”, “them”, and “this”).. Gender pronouns (he/she/they/ze etc.). Pronouns are part of someone’s gender expression, and people can have multiple sets of pronouns for themselves (such as using move he/him/his and they/them/theirs).. A gender neutral or gender inclusive pronoun is a pronoun which does not associate a gender with the individual who is being discussed.. Some languages, such as English, do not have a gender neutral or third gender pronoun available, and this has been criticized, since in many instances, writers, speakers, etc.. use “he/his” when referring to a generic individual in the third person.. And whatever the grammarians might argue, people have been using the singular “they” for about the last 600 years, though (as mentioned earlier) it can only be applied in certain cases.

There are more than just two. Here's a guide to gender identity terms, whether you’re looking to define your personal identity or want to be a better ally.

“It's understandable that some folks may feel confused or even uncomfortable with all the variations of gender, gender identities, and gender roles,” says Tracy Marsh, PhD, faculty member for Walden University's PhD in Clinical Psychology program, and a licensed psychologist in California who specializes in LGBTQIA issues.. “Gender is a term that relates to how we feel about ourselves, the way we choose to express our gender through makeup, dresses, high heels, athletic shorts, sneakers, and more,” she explains.. It’s not just the male/female gender binary—there's a spectrum of gender identity.. “[Most people] lie in between [the binary], with personality traits that relate to gender identity, expression, and biological sex.. “Gender identity is how you feel about yourself and the ways you express your gender and biological sex,” says Golob.. “If a doctor assigns gender based on genitalia, when the baby is born and says, ‘It's a girl,’ and that person aligns with their gender, that's what it means to be cisgender ,” says Golob, noting that this term sometimes gets shortened to “Cis.”. “Cishet refers to people whose gender identity and biological sex are aligned (cisgender), and who are sexually attracted to the opposite sex,” says Marsh.. “They can either feel both gender characteristics or feel different from them.” You may hear non-binary used as an umbrella term for various groups of people that don’t identify as male or female.. “Some people's gender identity varies over time,” adds Pagès, who also recommends looking at the Genderbread Person , a helpful resource on understanding gender, as well as guidelines on explaining gender to others.. Since all the specifics of these phrases may start to feel similar, Marsh provides some more useful intel: “The terms gender non-conforming, genderqueer, gender-fluid, and non-binary typically fall under the umbrella of transgender, or those persons who do not identify as cisgender,” says Marsh.. “Gendervoid is a term that is similar to agender, but specifically refers to not only a lack of gender identity, but also a sense of loss or a void in not feeling that gender identity,” explains Marsh.. There's no pop quiz on these terms, we promise, but becoming familiar with all gender identities is part of being a thoughtful human, no matter where you fall on the gender spectrum.

Some describe it as having a “lack of gender,” while others describe themselves as being gender neutral.

“Agender” is a term that refers to people who don’t identify as any gender in particular.. People often use the following words to mean more or less the same thing:. Someone’s gender identity doesn’t necessarily determine what pronouns they use.. For example, a nonbinary person may use he/him/his pronouns.. Agender is a great word for someone who doesn’t feel like they identify with any gender in particular.. Someone might choose the term over similar words (like genderless or gendervoid) if they feel a stronger emotional or intellectual connection to it.. What does gender mean to you?. Meeting and talking to nonbinary, gender-fluid, genderqueer, or gender-questioning people can help you find support while questioning your gender.

Buy CHCDIV001 Assessment Answers - By Reading this assignment solution you will get to know, how to write case study for CHCDIV001 Assignments.

You are to read and complete the questions related to each.Assessment Task 3: Culture researchYou are to undertake a research project on a number of different cultural groups living in Australia.Assessment Task 4: Cultural reflectionsYou are to reflect on your own experience of culture and diversity in the workplace.Assessment Task 5: Workplace observationsYou are to be observed by your assessor communicating with people from diverse social and cultural backgrounds in your workplace, in at least three different situations.. a) Describe the legislative and ethical rights and responsibilities of employees, employers, and clients to ensure a culturally safe and diverse work environment and care experience.. How do you think that Elise is contributing to a culturally safe and culturally competent workplace?. For this task, you are required to reflect on your own attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions of cultural diversity in the workplace (if you are a classroom-based student, think about your experiences so far while undertaking your work placement, or your experiences when working in a previous role).. What imagery is used in your workplace to assist with a culturally competent and culturally safe workplace?. You are to be observed by your assessor communicating with people from diverse social and cultural backgrounds in your workplace, in at least three different situations.. Access to your workplace (or placement service if you are a classroom-based student) Access to clients or colleagues from different social and cultural backgrounds.. For this task, your assessor will observe you during their workplace visit as you communicate and work with people in your workplace from diverse social and cultural backgrounds, helping to meet their needs (these will vary according to the situation, and may include care needs, information needs or workplace needs).. Work and communicate in a manner that shows respect for clients, colleagues, and others you interact with who are from diverse social and cultural groups Build and maintain professional relationships with clients and colleagues that are based on appreciation, respect, trust, and confidence Demonstrate inclusive work practices Contribute to and promote a culturally safe work environment Demonstrate use of effective verbal and non-verbal communication appropriate to each socially or culturally diverse situation Deal sensitively and appropriately when encountering language barriers to ensure clear and respectful communication Seek assistance from colleagues or your supervisor as required if you have difficulties in any situations (note that a verbal question will be asked where this is not able to be demonstrated).


1. Transgender People, Gender Identity and Gender Expression
(Tommie Jayne Tooter)
2. Professor Pride Answers The Most Searched Transgender Questions
(Powered By Rainbows™)
3. Answering Your Questions About Gender-Affirming Care
(Human Rights Campaign)
4. Understanding gender identity: Answers for physicians
(Boston Children's Hospital)
5. Transgender and Christian: Answering Your Questions!
6. Popular Questions: Being Nonbinary | LGBTQ+ Guide to Being a Better Ally | 78hundred

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