November 1, 2011
Cognitive Dissonance in my Life
When I first looked through the guidelines of this report, it was clear that I had the perfect beginning topic. Recently, my older brother has come out to the family about feeling gender confused. This was evident in our childhood because he always seemed awkward with his body and growing up, he didn’t have very many friends. My brother has always been a little different to the rest of the world, my parents used to say he “marches to the beat of a different drummer.”
I’ve always been the type of person who tries to accept people for who they are, no matter the differences. When he confided in me about feeling as though he should have been born a woman, I was surprised but knew this was why he had always been different. Our parents, on the other hand, aren’t always accepting of such big changes. Even when I got my first tattoo, they were incredibly disappointed in my actions, let alone how they were going to handle my brother’s internal struggles. The journey my brother was now traveling on included many cognitive dissonances for not only him, but also the whole family. According to the medical dictionary found online, gender confusion is also called Gender Identity Disorder. This is a disorder where the person feels as though they were born in the wrong body. “The psychological diagnosis, gender identity disorder, is used to describe a male or female that feels a strong identification with the opposite sex and experiences considerable distress because of their actual sex” (Medical Dictionary). “Transgender students may be of any age, ethnicity, race, class, or sexual orientation. Some enter higher education open about being transgender, while others come out during college or graduate school. Still others may never use the term transgender, but will strongly identify themselves as male, female, transsexual, or another (or no) gender“ (Transgender Issues).
I have taken many psychology and...