Gender identity disorder (GID) or transsexualism is defined by strong, persistent feelings of identification with the opposite gender and discomfort with one’s own assigned sex. (“Psychology Today”) Due to a recent change to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM, “Gender Identity Disorder” will be replaced with “Gender Dysphoria”. For the purpose of this paper those two terms will be interchangeable. This paper will explore the symptoms that lead to a gender identity disorder diagnosis as well as the treatment process and obstacles a person with this disorder may face. It is a difficult process and is not something somebody would endure unless they truly believed they were meant to be the opposite sex.
Symptoms of a person with gender dysphoria can vary from person to person but there is certain criterion that must be met in order to obtain that diagnosis from a licensed professional. Some of the criteria in children includes; Repeated expressed desire to be the opposite sex or that they are the opposite sex, discomfort and/or disgust of own gentiles, cross-dressing for boys or masculine attire for girls, prolonged preference for cross-sex roles in play and games or fantasies of being the opposite sex, desire to only have friends of the opposite sex and belief they will grow up to be the opposite sex.
The symptoms for an adult with gender dysphoria is somewhat different because they are of age and able to effectively communicate thoughts and desires. Some of these symptoms include persistent discomfort with current sex, stated desire to be the opposite sex, frequent attempts to pass as the opposite sex, desire to get rid of gentiles, social isolation, depression and anxiety. The only way for a proper diagnosis is to be evaluated by a licensed clinical psychologist who specializes in gender identity issues.
Once a diagnosis is reached what is treatment like?...