2 Transgender

Chapter 2: Transgender (Trans) – Living a different gender to that assigned at birth

June is a forty-five year old person whom you have always known as Jack. She comes to you because she wishes to transition into the female role, and indeed she has arrived in your office in a dress with her hair in a feminine style. She tells you that her wife of twenty years is unhappy with the situation and she is not sure what to do.

Think about

  • What is your formulation/understanding of the key issues for June?
  • Is there a need to refer on for specialised assistance for June?
  • What assumptions might you bring to this?
  • How would you proceed?

June may simply need time to discuss her feelings and it will be helpful to know if she has told anyone else and what forms of support she has. It may not be necessary at this stage to refer on, but if she wishes for some physiological changes referral to appropriate professionals (her GP or primary care physician in the first instance and thereafter according to local arrangements) may need to be considered. It should not be assumed that she wishes to make a full-time transition, or that any physiological change will be wanted. Some trans people assume that physiological transition will be necessary and simply explaining that it is a choice will be of great benefit in that case.

It may be useful to talk to June’s wife and for her wife to get such help as she requires. Throughout, normalising the situation and June’s trans status (however it may manifest) as far as possible will be of great assistance

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