Between+XX+and+XY:+Intersexuality+and+the+myth+of+two+sexes

It is mine after all i am the one that has to live

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Unformatted text preview: part female—anatomically part female—makes transitioning a lot easier from a personalacceptance point of view. It’s like there is more than just me believing I am a woman. That provides comfort to me. . . . I really think that everyone knows what they are, and can comprehend just how confusing it would be to question what they are, knowing they had surgeries, knowing they had extra anatomical things, or genetics, and finally discovering as an adult that they are different from most people. While no one seems to be willing to acknowledge what genetic condition I have, what was acknowledged during a Social Security income review in September 2007 is that I have a genetic disorder—a “multi-body system disorder” that causes 73 74 Between XX and XY delusional gender identity issues along with the depressive states. . . . That information came from medical records that were read into that hearing, reviewed by an orthopedic doctor, questioned by a psychiatrist, and witnessed by a federal judge. As for being delusional or GID, I don’t know. But at least what was said shows that I actually don’t fit that diagnosis well. Still, the genetic condition, the amount of trauma and depression, and eccentric behavior patterns, all make it difficult to fit socially. . . . So far, that is the most information, on record, that I have ever been able to get acknowledged about my genetics and anatomy from anyone since returning home after my military service. I wish the final findings of fact had actually stated that I was, in fact, intersexed, or a true hermaphrodite. Instead a genetic condition was used, and a multi-body system was used, as terms to explain what I am. . . . Truthfully, I think the most important thing I would like people to understand about me is that I am a person, I have a right to my own body. It is mine after all, I am the one that has to live with it, and no one else has a right to make decisions for me. I really hope people come to understand that each of us has that same right. There isn’t a person on this planet who should be forced to live as something they aren’t. While doctors still continue to spread the belief that assigning a child as a girl or boy is extremely crucial to their well-being, for those of us who they chose [the] wrong [sex for], our lives are just tortured. And for [those of us for whom the doctors] chose correctly, there are still huge emotional conflicts and emotional issues that are continually being ignored because of the medical standards in practice for intersexed persons. We are placed into a world that has the openness and understanding to accept an intersexed person as a perfectly normal human being, and it is the fault of the medical community that has shunned, shamed, hidden, tortured, humiliated, traumatized, and continually discriminated against us because of how Where Our Sexes Come From 75 we were born, to the point that there are those people who remain ignorant about people born with ambiguous genitalia, chromosome disorders, and hormonal variations that make us the unique people we are. Bits of Y Chromosomes: Lost and Found Like with X chromosomes, Y chromosomes may also lose parts of themselves, duplicate parts of themselves, and pick up stray pieces of other chromosomes that they find lying about in the nucleus. Y chromosomes are an unusual assortment of treasures and junk. The chromosome itself—at least in idealized textbook illustrations— looks a little like a bowling pin. We call the short upper part the short arm and the long, fatter, lower part the long arm of the Y chromosome. About half of the long arm of the Y chromosome seems to be junk and contains no genes at all. The short arm, on the other hand, contains some genes that can make all the difference between men and women. This part we named the sex-determining region of the Y chromosome (SRY), and it contains genes that will, almost all by themselves, turn an uncommitted pair of gonads into testes and a fetus into a boy. Normally, SRY shows up exclusively on an intact Y chromosome, but not always. Occasionally, during development of sperm, a Y chromosome will drop a piece of itself on the cutting-room floor. If that piece happens to include SRY, then this particular Y chromosome has lost its knack for making baby boys. When that sperm hooks up with a normal ovum, the resulting zygote, embryo, fetus, and child will have the 46,XY karyotype, but, in every other way that matters, it will be a girl, or almost. This change comes in two forms called complete and partial gonadal dysgenesis (dysgenesis means abnormal development). 46,XY people with complete gonadal dysgenesis have fully formed female external genitalia, but the ovaries are not completely developed and are usually present as streak ovaries. People with partial gonadal dysgenesis have incompletely formed testes and varying degrees of partly formed male external genitalia. All of it seems to depend on just how much of the Y chromosome gets lost. 76 Between XX and XY A similar situation c...
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