Over time, the recognition and acceptance of trans people has grown in our society. This is particularly evident in their increased representation within the media. However, many myths, misconceptions and misunderstandings still surround trans people. With that said, here are 15 myths about trans people debunked.
1. Being Transgender Is a Mental Illness.
The world health organization and other international bodies have recognized that gender identity is not a mental disorder. There is no inherent mental disorder that trans people are born with.
2. Transgender People Are a Danger in Public Restrooms.
In the US, there is no evidence to back any danger posed by trans people using their preferred restrooms. In fact, trans people have a higher chance of being assaulted in public restrooms.
3. Transgender People Are Just Confused or Going through a Phase.
A study from the Boston University School of Medicine hints that trans people receive genders at birth that oppose their biological identity.
4. Transgender People Are Just Pretending to Be the Opposite Gender.
Trans people have a gender identity different from the biological sex they are born with. They have valid experiences which should be respected.
5. All Transgender People Undergo Surgery.
Transition is a personal choice and not all trans people go through surgical procedures as part of their transition. Some may choose to pursue hormone therapy while others opt for surgical or non-surgical methods.
6. Transgender People Are Promiscuous or Hypersexual.
Sexual behaviour and preferences are different for each person, regardless of their gender identity. Being transgender does not inherently correlate to being promiscuous or hypersexual.
7. Transgender People Are More Prone to Mental Health Issues.
Trans people are not inherently vulnerable to mental disorders. However, trans people often face discrimination, stigma and other societal factors that may lead to mental health issues.
8. Transitioning Is a Quick and Easy Process.
Transitioning is unique to each person but is a complex process that may involve social, medical, and legal steps. It takes time, support and understanding.
9. Transgender People Regret Transitioning.
Studies and research show that very few trans people regret transitioning, However, some trans persons may have some doubts or possible regrets about an aspect of their transitioning.
10. Transgender People Are Not “Real” Men or Women.
Gender identity is not based on sexual characteristics it is about how a person identifies themselves. A trans person is a real man or woman and should be treated as such.
11. Children and Teenagers Cannot Be Transgender.
Children and teenagers can have a strong sense of gender identity at a young age. Trans children exhibit a consistent gender identity over time and it is important to let them explore and express their identity in a safe space.
12. Transgender People Represent a Distinct Third Gender.
Trans people identify as either men or women and not as any other gender. While there are some people who do not identify with any gender (gender nonconforming) a trans person will clearly identify as either man or woman.
13. Transgender People Are Just “Going against Nature” or Defying Biology.
Contrary to what most people think, your gender is not determined by the biological sex you are born with. And scientific research supports that being trans is just a natural variation of human diversity.
14. Transgender People are Just Seeking Special Rights or Privileges.
Trans people advocate for equal rights and not special privileges. They want to be treated like the average person and strive for basic human rights including healthcare, employment and protection against discrimination.
15. Sexual Orientation Is the Same as Gender Identity.
Sexual orientation and gender identity are two different aspects of a person’s life. Sexual orientation has to do with your sexual attraction like being bisexual, heterosexual or homosexual. On the other hand, gender identity is based on your sense of self and what gender you identify as, like being male. female or binary.
Trans people still face many social challenges as society continues to embrace them. By debunking these myths, we can create a supportive environment that understands and accepts transgender individuals.