January 7, 2010
So one year ago I was on the table having my “boob surgery”. lol kidding sort of. I was under going a double mastectomy. Having top surgery if you will.
Top surgery was something I wasn’t sure about at first during my transition. I was certain of the testosterone. Certain I was a man. Certain of the need for the name change to Dylan. However, surgery was something more permanent. But the frustration quickly arose when I was androgynous or worse, seen as a female. that was the ultimate blow.
So yes, top surgery it was to make a more male appearance for myself. To see myself as the man I saw in my mind. And to lose something that didn’t make sense to me. I dare all of the men out there to wake up with breasts and after the initial 24 hours of self pleasure let me know how quickly you want them removed.
So that morning, things were a bit delayed. My mom and I woke up in our crummy hotel room and the doctors post poned a few hours due to the snow. This was Baltimore, MD. I don’t remember the exact time, but finally we left for the hospital. I was so nervous to under go anesethesia. The anesthesiologist was amazing. Tricking me before she slipped me into my coma. roughly 2 hours later. I awoke. A changed man.
It really changed my life and I it was the best decision I have ever made.
One year ago today! man, time flies!
January 5, 2010
I know nothing about this woman’s politics. But in the same United States Congress that refuses to pass ENDA– that same administration appoints Amanda Simpson.
Thankfully she works in D.C.
January 5, 2010
a film by Miriam Lassiter
produced/Edited by Dylan McGinty
Miriam is a student and undergrad in USC (majoring in Biology). She had to take an elective course in transgender studies to fill an elective requirement. She had no idea what transgender met before beginning the course. She thought of herself as an educated, open minded person who knew gay/lesbian people.
Through the fall semester, she learned about the struggles we all face as trans people. Since her brain works on the healthcare level; she realized that our community faced specific needs that were not being met. She worked in conjunction with the film department @ USC to gain access to equipment and contacted FTM Alliance to blast an email to ask people to interview.
this is where I jumped in. I am a post production manager and offered to not only be in the film, but help produce and edit for her. While the film is a complete 10 minute documentary (per her class requirements). We intend to continue our film in 2010 through research grants, funraising and the support of Frameline Distribution.
If anyone has any interest in the film or wants to contribute footage, information, etc. Please let me know!
I live in Hollywood and am going to be getting more interviews, footage through the spring of 2010.
With that, please know this is not meant to speak to everyone, but bring the issue of trans gender health care to light. Basically, Miriam wanted to make a film to educate her classmates. the future doctors that like herself, have no idea the trans health needs of our community– in hopes that things will change in our future.
With that, please enjoy!:
May 12, 2008
Okay so after reading Part 1 of the NPR series, I have one question, why is Zucker’s approach more common in the United States. Zucker’s approach left Bradley hating the color pink, he seems mal-adjusted and when asked about wanting to be a girl he clearly says no out of fright. Is that how you would want to live? I wouldn’t. Jona– is accepted, she seems happy and her parents are accepting. Yes, deciding to change your gender is a big idea, and irreversible. But I think the idea to suppress those issues in the case with Bradley (Zucker) it seems even worse. I have an unsettling feeling in my stomach that Zucker is the head of the DSM-V group. Why is this the case?
Also I leave everyone with this quote from part 1, as I prepare my self to read part-2:
Jonah, Now Jona
For their part, Joel and his wife Pam say they are clearly happy with the choice they’ve made. Joel says he now thinks of Jonah as his daughter, and he says that she — Jona — is thriving.
“She’s so comfortable with her own being when she’s simply left to be who she is without any of these restrictions being put on her. It’s just remarkable to see.”
In terms of which of these therapies is more prevalent in the United States, Ehrensaft says there is absolutely no doubt.
“Zucker’s,” she says.
Ehrensaft hopes this will change. She says that professional opinion on this subject is in incredible flux — that the treatment of transgender children is becoming a kind of civil rights issue, in the same way that the psychiatric treatment of homosexuals became a civil rights issue in the 1970s.
In the meantime, though, Zucker’s approach continues to thrive. He says nearly 80 children are on the waiting list at his clinic in Toronto.
Firstly, thank you to Nicole for pointing this out to me.
NPR recently broadcast a 2-part series on transgender children. Blog and my thoughts to follow.
Here are the links:
Part 1: Two Families Grapple With Sons’ Gender Preferences
Part 2: Parents Consider Treatment to Delay Son’s Puberty
One of the families uses Dr. Zucker’s Treatments, the other Dr. Ehrensaft. Dr. Zucker and Dr. Ehrensaft come from a very different approach to treating transgender children. Dr. Ehrensaft encourages the transgender child and uses transgender friendly terms. Zucker, on the other hand, well why don’t you just read this snippet and make your own decision:
From Zucker’s Work as published on NPR:
“Suppose you were a clinician and a 4-year-old black kid came into your office and said he wanted to be white. Would you go with that? … I don’t think we would,” Zucker says.
If a black kid walked into a therapist’s office saying he was really white, the goal of pretty much any therapist out there would be to make him try to feel more comfortable being black. They would assume his mistaken beliefs were the product of a dysfunctional environment — a dysfunctional family or a dysfunctional cultural environment that led him or her to engage in this wrongheaded and dangerous fantasy. This is how Zucker sees gender-disordered kids. He sees these behaviors primarily as a product of dysfunction.
The mistake the other side makes, Zucker argues, is that it views gender identity disorder primarily as a product of biology. This, Zucker says, is, “astonishingly naive and simplistic.”
Zucker has come to believe that taking the view that kids are born transgender ultimately produces more transgender people.
Also, Thank you to Gender Outlaw for pointing this out! You know I read about the appointment of Zucker and the DSM-V and the horrors, thanks for being on top of this! Zucker is the head of The Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders Work Group. Zucker along with 13 others will have significant impact on what goes into the DSM-V.
Read Gender Oulaw’s blog for more until I have time to post my thoughts!!
May 2, 2008
Deciding to transition is a monumental decision in anyone’s life. Deciding to do it while remaining at the same job, is an even great challenge for some. Fortunately for me, I work with a great company and great people and my reception and transition on the job was met with comfort, support and encouragement. I wanted to share my story with everyone so that the good stories could be balaned in with the horror ones I found.
It’s sad, but when I researched fellow FTM’s that had gone down the same path as myself, many of them had not kept the same job they had when prior to transitioning. Others took some time off from work and re-entered the work force as their male selves — starting over and only telling a few select people– HR/upper management about their past so the resume and references all matched up. A few people were fortunate enough to work in great places that except them, but they seemed to be working at trans oriented places like health centers or gay/lesbian youth centers. I also spoke to some people at the FTM alliance and again– mixed reviews on the transition at work process.
I’m a pretty outgoing, confrontational person (for better or worse) and I decided that I was going to face my fears and reservations. I did not want to leave the job I was at because it was a great opportunity at a premiere post production house in LA. But at the same time, I could not delay my need to transition. I decided to come out as transgendered at work, but had no idea where to start. My first resource after talking with friends and members in the community were handouts and pamphlets created by TLC and the HRC on transitioning at work. I read those over to know my rights and how to best go about this. Luckily for me, I work in one of the few states– California– in which it is illegal to discriminate based on gender idenitity. This was a big confidence builder in knowing that no matter what, I could not be fired because of my decision to transition or come out as transgendered.
The first recommendation from the packet I read was to tell my immediate boss about my plans and be as open as my comfort level allowed. I decided to tell a co-worker that I knew rather well and he encouraged me to tell my immediate boss about my plans. She was very accepting and helped me come up with a plan to tell our HR/Operations manager and then ultimately our CEO. I work at a company with roughly 50 employees with a median age of 30. I also work in an industry that is a bit less conservative then the normal social curve then American society, so I had that going for me. The 5 people in my immediate department were amazing, fully supportive and embraced my new name and identity. I had the confidence I needed to tell our HR/Operations manager.
The next step was telling him about my desire to transition. This was early November and I had been on testosterone for 2 weeks at this point– In a few months I knew that the hormones would start to lower my voice and changes would become noticable. It was now or never to let them know what was happening. I told him flat out what was going on, the process, what I expected from my employer and opened the discussion up for questions. He said that I was the first person at the job (obviously) that was transitioning and he wanted to do more research so he was well versed in the subject. Thankfully HRC and TLC have packets available for upper management on effective implementation of transgendered people in the work force. There are also resources available on changing employee handbooks to have gender inclusion. Finally, the topic of the restroom came up and we both decided to do some research on this as well.
The next step was to meet with our CEO and discuss my plans with him. My immedaite supervisor and the HR/Operations Manager had a brief meeting with him and then invited me in. He came up to me with open arms hugged me and said that the company was fully supportive of my decision and was going to work with me to ensure that my transition at the company was met with open arms and was as smooth as possible. Those were the best words any trans guy could hear! HUGE weight lifted off my back. Alhthough I knew the road was still a tough one ahead, it helped tremendously to know that I had the support of our CEO and the company.
Over the next several weeks, we met with the company lawyer to go over our employee handbook and policy to incorporate gender identity inclusions. We also mapped out a timeline of when to tell my fellow employees and clients that I deal with on a regular basis. Part of this process was to educate everyone about trans senstive terminology. I welcomed all qusetions and gathered as much research as I could. We finally decided that I was also going to use the men’s restroom moving forward when the official announcement was made. Every step of the plan was approved by me and I was able to dictate what level of comfort I had before any major decisions and changes were implemented. We decided that in 2 weeks I would tell the department heads and then at our year end state of the union, I would briefly address my fellow employees on my decision to transition. This was my decision to talk directly to everyone because I felt I could dictate the course of the discussion and choose my words carefully.
December 17th, 2007, I stood up before 45+ employees and let everyone know that I was no longer going to be known as my female name and that I was embarking on a transition and was going to change my name to Dylan, taking hormones and becoming a man. It was made known to everyone that I would prefer male pronouns such as “he” and “him” but that of course, I knew this process was not going to happen over night, especially with the name. My biggest request was that they honor and respect my request and try their best. At the end of my 5 minute request, the entire company gave me a group hug and welcomed me with open arms.
January 2nd 2008– I entered the doors of my company as Dylan. I started using the men’s restroom and almost everyone right away referred to me as male and used my new name. It was amazing!! I could not have asked for a better receptoin. Along the way, people still continue to ask me questions about my transition, the process, etc. and I welcome those questions with openess as I feel it’s the best situation for me.
It has now been 5 months since my official transition at work and I am happy to report that it’s pretty much business as usual. I have had no trouble with the transition and everyone calls me Dylan. I changed all of my paperwork with no trouble and have support around every corner. I realize that everyone’s situation is different, especially if you live in a state in which you are not legally covered against discrmination, but I really wanted to share my story and offer it up as hope to everyone out there that transitioning on the job can be done and can be met with open arms and acceptance.
Furthermore, if anyone has any questions as to how the process was for me or any of the leg work I did, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and keep up with my transition process at dylansworld.wordpress.org
April 28, 2008
I finally got my California Driver’s License with my new name and gender!! more to follow… stay tuned!
April 17, 2008
I am just now starting to do my own research on Transgender lobbying and organizations out there fighting the good fight for trans inclusive bills and being more proactive. Found this on the NCTE webpage today– these things need to be more public at sites like FTM ALLIANCE and FTMi so more Trans people can help with the cause or raise awareness.
Were you frustrated, angry or disappointed at Congress’ decision to set aside the transgender-inclusive version of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)?
Were you excited by the passage of a transgender-inclusive Hate Crimes bill?
Do you believe elected officials need to hear directly from transgender people about the bills and issues that impact our lives?
If so, come to DC for Lobby Day on April 14 & 15!
Members of Congress have said that more education is needed in order to convince their colleagues to vote for legislation that includes gender identity and expression; let’s make sure they hear from us loudly and clearly this year that only full equality under the law is acceptable to our community. Our community needs — and deserves — full protections against the rampant discrimination we face. Will you help us send this message?
We must make sure our elected officials understand who we are and why our community needs protetions agains workplace discrimination and violence. To do this, we need as many diverse members of the transgender community as we can gather, and our families and allies, to come to Washington, DC on April 14-15 to speak directly to our members of Congress.
We must tell legislators why a transgender-inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act is absolutely essential. We need to share the real story of trangender lives: our need for basic health care and employment; the right to raise our families and have safe homes; and the chronic harassment and violence that many of us face on a daily basis. Our representatives need to know that there are transgender people living in thier districts, voting and participating in the civic life of our nation. And we need to show our politicians and the other organzations in our nation’s capital the strength of our commitment to stand up for transgender civil rights.
Join us on April 14-15 for what we are sure will be the largest transgender Lobby Day to date. Last year broke records, but this year we need your presence even more. This year’s event will include:
- A comprehensive training session to make sure you have all of the information you need for an effective and positive visit with your member of Congress
- A rally on the Capitol steps for transgender rights
- A briefing on all of the major public policy issues impacting the transgender community right now
- A reception at the National Press Club (separate ticket)
- If this is your first time visiting your member of Congress, we’ll provide assistance in making the appointment and getting you started
Here’s what you can do to help:
- Plan to come to Washington, DC April 14-15
- Help organize a delegation from your city, town, or state
- Volunteer to help make appointments and assist others for whom this is their first lobbying experience; please contact us at email@example.com to let us know if you are willing to volunteer
- Spread the word to others in our community by forwarding this information and future announcements about lobby day; let people know why you think this is an important event
- Raise funds to help people come to lobby day who would not otherwise be able to afford it; you can donate money or frequent flyer miles to the scholarship fund or assist others through a local organization
- Write about it in your blog or newsletter; send e-mails to your friends and colleagues about why it is vital for the transgender community to send this message to Congress
Participating in Lobby Day, including the training, policy briefing and rally, is free. We do need you to register in advance so that we can plan for your participation and make sure that you are able to meet with your member of Congress. Once you register, we’ll send you a comprehensive packet of information about how to prepare for your visit. Click to register today!
There will be a ticket charge for the reception, to defray our costs and to help raise funds to support this and ongoing efforts to educate Congress about the need for transgender-inclusive legislation. Scholarships are available; please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Click for more information.
April 14, 2008
So I’ve recently been denied a US Passport because I do not have the necessary surgeries required under the Patriot Act to change my gender on my passport. I also don’t have the necessary surgeries to change my birth certificate either. However, I am on testosterone and live full time as a male member of society– this grants me a gender change according to the more liberal practices of the CA state DMV. So basically, If I have a license and photo ID claiming me to be male and then a passport that says differently, this will create even more of a headache and red flag in my opinion and of course does not make sense. Why are you so worried about my gender? Am I really a gender terrorist?
The surgery you (government, people that vote these laws into practice, the uninformed masses..etc.) require me to get is close to $8,000. It is something I would get in a heart beat if I had the proper finances. However, the insurance company does not cover it. So US Dept. of State, are you going to cover the cost in the surgery you’re requiring me to get so I am allowed to freely leave my country? No, didn’t think so. I am a prisoner, trapped and stripped of my rights to come and go freely.
If I send a letter stating my intent to get surgery, I MAY be allowed a LIMITED passport book. thank you for that. I feel less like a gender terrorist already. Thank you for your genorisity. It really means a lot that I MAY be allowed to leave the country and that it will be a LIMITED time so my rights will then be taken away again. But please, by all mean, let the actual terrorists in, the ones planting the bombs, infiltrating our government and blowing up our buildings. By all means, allow them safe passage in and out of the country. But definitely fear the gender terrorist trying to go visit friends in Sweden or take a weekend trip to Mexico.
April 10, 2008
So I needed a few days to compose my thoughts about this subject before blogging. On Thursday, 4/3/08 Thomas Beatie and his wife Nancy, announced to the world via the Orpah show that they were pregnant. The catch was that Thomas is transgendered and was carrying the child himself. So the media pull was that this man was pregnant. Well the headlines were correct. He transitioned and to coin the Oprah phrase is transgendering (thank you Oprah for inventing that word for me). He was on testosterone for 8 years and then went off it for 2 years before he became pregnant. [now of course, I am not his doctor nor do I know this for a fact, but this is the information I am able to gather from reputable news sources]. He did have top surgery to remove his breasts, but opted to not have bottom surgery leaving his uterus and ovaries in tact. This afforded him the ability to reproduce and thus he is pregnant with a child.
My feelings on this subject:
1. I don’t think the subject was approached correctly by the media / Oprah or even Thomas. I think the circus display of “pregnant man” was a bit too much. They should have explained the idea behind transitioning and being transgendered a bit. At least Thomas got to say his piece that his sexual orientation and attraction towards women had nothing to do with his gender identity. Point for the trans community. And he got to say that his desire to carry a child had nothing to do with his feelings of masculinity or femininity but it was a human desire. Point for the trans community!
2. I think it left much of the world with lots of questions and a very IN YOUR FACE situation. Which I”m all about, the world needs to know. and I’m grateful everyone was talking about it. But more needs to then be said about it, more follow up, not just the freak show and we’re out. It was great to hear people call me and say “i saw a pregnant transman on Oprah”. or the questions I fielded the next day on how this was possible and why, etc. Those were great life challenging, society changing questions. But I’m not sure where the support from his fellow transmen are or the trans community in general since I only found one semi-supportive blog about it on FTMI.
3. I am completely supportive of him and his wife. Their desire to have a child is a human right and I say good for him. Could I go off testosterone for 2 years? No probably not it’s not something I desire. I’m not even sure how his hormones can’t be all crazy with the increase or progesterone and estrogen and the residuals of testosterone. But he seemed perfectly happy and content. I say — way to go Thomas for bringing your story to the world– even if the media did make it into a circus– and hopefully you make it through your pregnancy safely.