In This Article
In This Article
A transgender person is someone who identifies with a gender different from their biological sex. Basically, the male or female sex they were assigned at birth differs from the sex they feel they are inside. As per data from 2016, about 0.58% of the adult population in the United States identifies as being transgendered.
A person who self-describes are transgender is someone whose perception of what sex they are differs from the sex they were born with. Being transgender is about sexual identity. It is not about who they are sexually attracted to; that is one's sexual orientation. There is a difference.
Adult transgender people report knowing they were transgender at an early age, as early as preschool. Some of the signs include:
Current research has not been able to identify any precise cause for transgender.
Researchers studying this speculate that the origins are complex.
The causes include brain development while the baby is still in the mother's womb, the influence of hormones produced or medication taken by the mother, congenital anomalies, and intersex conditions when a baby is born with both male and female genitalia.
When a transgender person experiences distress due to the mismatching of their biological sex versus the sex they feel on the inside, it is called gender dysphoria. The emotions transgender people feel can be hard to bear alone. In a pool of 6,000 self-identified transgender respondents:
To help with this emotional distress, many turn to therapy specialized for this issue, transgender therapy, or transgender counseling.
Transgender therapy or gender dysphoria therapy
The goal of transgender therapy is to guide the transgender person towards self-acceptance. Transgender counseling will help support patients as they move towards the outward expression of who they know to be.
Transgender therapy and transgender counseling are therapy specialized in support of transgender individuals. It provides a safe space for transgender people to explore their personal growth.
It can guide them in the coming-out process, gender dysphoria, and how to talk about transitioning to your family, friends, and colleagues.
Transgender counseling - What to expect
Your therapist will help guide the conversation during your sessions, but you will undoubtedly have questions of your own that you will want to explore.
They may ask you questions based on a scenario like this:
Imagine you could start life over, right from the moment you were born. Knowing everything you know now, you get to choose which sex you are born.
They may also assess based on questions like these:
Transgender couples therapy
As one or both partners explore their gender, this raises new issues, both emotional and sexual, that arise in the relationship. Sex is, in so many ways, constructed as gendered, but couples often find themselves asking, "Do those conventions work for us?"
What constitutes attraction, how sex is initiated, and even how sex itself is defined often need to be explored. One of the tasks of transgender couples therapy is to help a couple create these shared understandings.
Transgender hormone therapy
In addition to working on the psychological aspects of being transgender, many people undergo transgender hormone therapy to change their outward appearance, so it aligns with the sex they identify with. It is an essential and vital part of their transition process.
How does hormone therapy work for transgender individuals?
When a person starts transgender hormonal therapy, they take sex hormones and other medications so that they begin developing the sexual characteristics of the sex they identify with and can start closely-resembling that sex.
Transgender hormone therapy guidelines
Exogenous testosterone is used in transgender men to induce virilization and suppress feminine characteristics. In transgender women, exogenous estrogen is used to help feminize patients, and anti-androgens are used as adjuncts to help contain masculinizing features.
The rate at which the transgender hormonal therapy is administered is decided between doctor and patient.
Risks of Transgender Hormone Therapy
People undergoing transgender hormonal therapy are closely monitored for bone and cardiovascular health, as well as metabolic changes.
Transgender Hormone Therapy Side Effects
Transgender hormone therapy side effects vary according to the hormones administered. For men transitioning to women, the side effects of feminizing hormones-- commonly estrogen, testosterone blockers, and progesterone include:
On the positive side of the equation, some of the beneficial side effects of feminizing hormones include:
For women transitioning to men, the side effects of masculinizing hormone therapy—commonly testosterone—include:
On the positive side of the equation, some of the beneficial side effects of masculinizing hormones include:
While searching for transgender therapist or counselor nearby, you can always ask for references from your close ones but looking up expert therapists online is a good option too. Just search for "Transgender mental health support" or “Transgender Therapists or Transgender Psychologists or Transgender Counselors near me” to choose one.
How to find transgender hormone therapist
To locate a transgender hormone therapy doctor or a health care facility and the doctors specializing in transgender hormonal therapy, search for "Transgender Hormone Therapy near me" online. Some sites to research include:
To locate a health care facility specializing in transgender voice therapy, look online for "Transgender Voice Therapy near me".
The cost for transgender hormone therapy varies from $20 to $350 on a monthly basis depending on where you receive treatment, and what your treatment consists of. Be sure to ask for a cost estimate before you commit to transgender hormone therapy, and inform yourself of what your health insurance might cover for this treatment.