Essay on Gender Development And Gender Dysphoria

Essay on Gender Development And Gender Dysphoria

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Gender dysphoria refers to the ‘‘distress that may accompany the incongruence between one’s experienced or expressed gender and one’s assigned gender’’ (American Psychiatric Association, 2013, p. 451). A relatively new diagnosis, the inclusion of gender dysphoria in the DSM 5 represents a shift from pathologizing the identity of transgender people to reestablishing the focus on the distress or dysphoria as the clinical issue (Coleman et al., 2012). Therefore the goal of treatment is the reduction of gender dysphoric symptoms (Schneider, 2016). Affirmative practice can useful with a broad spectrum of transgender and gender nonconforming (TGNC) children and adolescents. After providing context by exploring gender development and gender dysphoria generally this paper will focus on practices for youth who express extreme gender dysphoria, a persistent desire to live as a different gender and those who are seeking gender-transition interventions. In order to fully understand the differences of affirmative treatment based on developmental stage this exploration will begin by looking at benchmarks in the development of gender, followed by the current ideologies for working with gender questioning or dysmorphic children, we will then look at a verified quantitative measure of the gender dysphoria spectrum, discuss the definition of affirmative practice and the major premises informing the mode of treatment of adolescents.
Gender awareness and constructs of gender roles begin to develop as early as infancy (Martin, Ruble, & Szkrybalo, 2002). At eight months children display the ability to categorize adults by gender and nearly all children are able label their own gender by age two (Zosuls et al., 2009). Corresponding with the timeline of ...


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...Waal, 2006; Steensma et al., 2013). The 12-item Utrecht Gender Dysphoria Scale (UGDS) focus on “dissatsfaction with bodily aspects, gender identity, and gender roles” (Schneider, 2016) by asking to what extent clients identify with statements on a likart scale. An example from the male to female assessment is “I feel unhappy because I have a male body” and from the female to male measure “I continuously want to be treated like a boy.” Clients are asked whether they agree completely, agree somewhat, neutral, disagree somewhat, disagree completely and a score from 1 to 5 is given for each question. A dyphoric range of 50 to 60 has been established (Steensma et al., 2013) a score of 60 requires choosing the strongest statement on all 12 items while a score of 50 necessitates at least two of the strongest statements and can be reached in a number of combinations (ways).

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