By Dr. Tilak S. Fernando
Much publicity has been given recently in the international media over a controversy surrounding what is known as “ The Barth Room Bill” concentrating mainly on the United States of America on the topic of segregation of sexes in public rest rooms demanding “ men should not be going inside bathrooms with little girls”. This means prohibiting even a little girl in desperate emergency situation to go for a call of nature with her own father!
Many parts of American States from Arkansas, Kentucky, Arizona, Nevada, Mississippi etc. have come out of ideas, protests and objections to this Bill which appears to have become applicable to students at North Carolina State School, which has managed to enter the Regulation into the statue book on 23 March 2016 under the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act, superseding the existed anti-LGBT discrimination ordinance.
This Bill has been doing the rounds since 2013 when an Arkansas Governor spoke in favour of the gender segregated bathroom in Arizona. In the State of Kentucky of course it has been considered and condemned calling it “ absurd’, while in Mississippi the blame was directed at the Obama administration for ‘ forcing its liberal agenda’.
Assuming that each white paper that was proposed from various States in the USA and allowed to enter the Statute Book, it would have meant that even a bystander could sue, for example a transgender, using a prohibited bathroom where he/she could have been found guilty and fined up to $2000, and additionally becoming eligible for compensation for “mental anguish”!
What is transsexualism or transsexuality? Transsexual is a person who feels emotionally and psychologically that he/she belongs to the opposite sex, or a person who has undergone treatment in order to acquire the physical characteristics of the opposite sex.
The British Psychological Society identifies this condition as ‘gender identity disorder’, which in simple terms refers to a person’s inner sense that does not match with his/her outward experience, such as the physical characteristics, and/or the social role as perceived by others. A transvestite, on the other hand, is a person, characteristically a man, who derives pleasure out of wearing clothes suitable for the opposite sex!
Both these categories are those who have been assigned at birth and harbouring the notion that they are born into the ‘ wrong body’! Under these tragic circumstances some take hormones and others decide to undergo sex re-assignment operations depending on their financial viability.
In our modern times there are professionals, specialists, clinics as well as chartered psychologists to advise and assist those who are confused with gender transition. Their advice for clients is to take the correct path ideal for an individual situation by exploring all options such as discussions with the specialists ranging from psychologists, urologists/ gynecologists, endocrinologists and most importantly conforming to medical ethics, because the operations may be partially or completely irreversible.
National Health Service – UK
In our ever-changing modern world it is difficult to fathom what takes place tomorrow! Nature has changed, nations have transformed, ethics, morals and peoples’ thinking patterns have drastically altered to an unprecedented level that anything on this earth is becoming possible today.
To address transgender needs UK’s National Health Service offers its services in what is known as ‘gender identity clinics’ usually referred to them by patients’ General Practitioners. Apart from the NHS, there exists a few private gender dysphoria services, which may entertain ‘fun’ referrals, but these private clinics always advise to check it with the local NHS organisations as a priority.
Prior to any treatment begins the patient will be subjected to a complete assessment by a psychiatrist or a specialist medical practitioner such as a GP, although the General Practitioners may not have much experience in dealing with trans health issues. UK’s special leaflet, PDF, 291 kb, gives the latest guide on such services, which outlines the best current practice in England. Gender identity clinics are found in London, the South East, West London Mental Health NHS Trust, Sheffield, Leeds, and Midlands and in the Southwest.
To cope up with the increase in number of individuals who are now pressing for ‘ gender re-assignment,’ the Department of Health and Social Services in England considered the issue with national funding initially by setting up of a clinic at the Charing Cross Hospital in West London as far back as 1989 where more than £112,000 pounds were spent in the year 1987. They received 120-150 new cases every year and in 1987 statistics alone revealed 184 new patients had gone through the operation, mostly men, and 1467 were in the waiting list!
During the transformation which starts with hormone treatment over a period of time, features of the individual starts to become soft. In the case of a man his genitals start withdrawing, and small breasts struggle to pop out. This is the period one does not have to be too sensitive when at least the eyes of the outside world and colleagues in the office will become rather inquisitive as to what is happening. At this stage some can become rude and unpleasant or critical sarcastic with crude jokes.
As physical changes take place of the individual external changes in life begin to follow suit. The painful process for a man to become a woman takes place with his nose bobbed, removal of the moustache/beard through electrolysis, mammary glands getting enlarged due to hormone treatment etc. However all the surgery in the world would not make a man into a woman overnight unless one learns to walk and talk like a woman and dress like a woman. It is not an easy task at all, and the gradual process takes a long time before the ‘patient’ could be taken for the full and final sex operation.
At the final operation, clinical technicians will start with speech therapy and he will have to spend hours on end meddling with make-up to learn how to apply those and get accustomed to a feminine walk. The clinic in their final performance will keep his skin and nerve endings, remove excess fatty tissue and invert the male genitals to transform a man into a stunning female!
One of the very first guineapigs who volunteered for the operation at Charing Cross Hospital was a green eyed bearded Stephen Robinson, a computer engineer who had been happily married with three children. When turbulences within him began to worry and he tried to control those, his wife had complained about his excessive libido. When the situation got out of hand to the extent that either of them could not satisfy each other he sought medical advice, but to his amasement his GP advised him that it had nothing to do with his libido but he was ‘ born to the wrong sex’! Ever since his anguish, heartache and physical agony transformed him from his manhood to a strange but desired womanhood.
After a successful operation Stephen Robinson completely transformed into a stunning blond with green eyes, 5’ 10” tall, 36B bust, 26” waist and 36” hips and qualified to enjoy the best of both worlds !