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Gender Identity & The Gender Spectrum

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  • Gender Identity & The Gender Spectrum

    It has come to my attention, that we don't seem to have a thread about this (please let me know if we do). I think this is something that we should be much more aware of; and I'd therefore like to invite you to discuss your thoughts and experiences.

    Please note the following:
    * this is a potentially controversial topic that may prove divisive in opinion. I therefore ask you to be respectful of other's opinions, and refrain from derogatory or deliberately provocative comments. It would be a shame to lock this thread because we couldn't sustain a mature discussion.
    * Gender identity is NOT the same thing as your sexuality. You can read more about what it is below. You may also wish to discuss or challenge the definition I have provided below. Gender Identity is not necessarily a simple concept, and people may differ in their understanding and perception of what is.

    It is important to note that gender identity, biological sex, and sexual orientation are separate and that you cannot assume how someone identifies in one category based on how they identify in another category.
    Source.

  • #2
    Great topic

    Comment


    • #3
      Gender Identity?

      For many people, the terms “gender” and “sex” are used interchangeably, and thus incorrectly. This idea has become so common, particularly in western societies, that it is rarely questioned. We are born, assigned a sex, and sent out into the world. For many people, this is cause for little, if any dissonance. Yet biological sex and gender are different; gender is not inherently nor solely connected to one’s physical anatomy.

      Biological Gender (sex) includes physical attributes such as external genitalia, sex chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones, and internal reproductive structures. At birth, it is used to assign sex, that is, to identify individuals as male or female. Gender on the other hand is far more complicated. It is the complex interrelationship between an individual’s sex (gender biology), one’s internal sense of self as male, female, both or neither (gender identity) as well as one’s outward presentations and behaviors (gender expression) related to that perception, including their gender role. Together, the intersection of these three dimensions produces one’s authentic sense of gender, both in how people experience their own gender as well as how others perceive it.

      The Gender Spectrum?

      Western culture has come to view gender as a binary concept, with two rigidly fixed options: male or female, both grounded in a person’s physical anatomy. When a child is born, a quick glance between the legs determines the gender label that the child will carry for life. But even if gender is to be restricted to basic biology, a binary concept still fails to capture the rich variation that exists. Rather than just two distinct boxes, biological gender occurs across a continuum of possibilities. This spectrum of anatomical variations by itself should be enough to disregard the simplistic notions of a binary gender system.

      But beyond anatomy, there are multiple domains defining gender. In turn, these domains can be independently characterized across a range of possibilities. Instead of the static, binary model produced through a solely physical understanding of gender, a far richer tapestry of biology, gender expression, and gender identity intersect in a multidimensional array of possibilities. Quite simply, the gender spectrum represents a more nuanced, and ultimately truly authentic model of human gender.

      Read more here.

      Comment


      • #4
        Interesting topic, Dan!
        I obviously think that this conforming to gender roles has always been a whole lotta bs that has only created discrimination and double standards, especially for women.

        Can't say much more now, I'll wait for other people replies to get more into details.

        Comment


        • #5
          So is anyone gonna kick the debate off?

          Does anyone have any experiences they'd like to share?

          Don't be shy.

          Comment


          • #6
            Most people (everyone except peasants) are aware of this now.
            What's there to say, when everything has been said already.
            My Best of 2014...|Tumblr|Last.fm|Instagram

            Comment


            • #7
              I was having a conversation with a friend of mine last night and she started telling me how she is curious to get physical with girls, but only the feminine ones, and I was like "there's no such thing like "feminine" or "masculine" IMO"
              It's all just a matter of gender and the social structures reflecting in our conceptions of feminine and masculine in the end. If that's the case, there are days when I feel more feminine and days when I feel more masculine and I feel no shame about it.
              I also hate how people often identify "feminine" gays as bottoms and vice versa, I know quite a few cases that prove the opposite (if identifying 100% with a role in sex is a thing at all). Same goes for lesbians.

              I impatiently wait for the day when we finally get rid of all this gender roles nonsense.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by ArmyOfMe
                I was having a conversation with a friend of mine last night and she started telling me how she is curious to get physical with girls, but only the feminine ones, and I was like "there's no such thing like "feminine" or "masculine" IMO"
                It's all just a matter of gender and the social structures reflecting in our conceptions of feminine and masculine in the end. If that's the case, there are days when I feel more feminine and days when I feel more masculine and I feel no shame about it.
                I also hate how people often identify "feminine" gays as bottoms and vice versa, I know quite a few cases that prove the opposite (if identifying 100% with a role in sex is a thing at all). Same goes for lesbians.

                I impatiently wait for the day when we finally get rid of all this gender roles nonsense.
                In the end everything are social constructions. And they exist for a reason. Some people are more feminine than masculine, you describe that as a sin or something unwanted ... That's just the way people are - a construct of characteristics, whatever label you want to use doesn't matter. Masculinity is just a label.
                My Best of 2014...|Tumblr|Last.fm|Instagram

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by LionH3art
                  Most people (everyone except peasants) are aware of this now.
                  What's there to say, when everything has been said already.
                  Thank you for that insightful contribution.

                  I doubt you get to see much of the real world up there on your high horse, but perhaps one day you'll grow up enough to offer a mature contribution to a real grown-up issue.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by LionH3art
                    In the end everything are social constructions. And they exist for a reason. Some people are more feminine than masculine, you describe that as a sin or something unwanted ... That's just the way people are - a construct of characteristics, whatever label you want to use doesn't matter. Masculinity is just a label.
                    have to agree with this. to me it's just a trait. yes, it's a social construct. but masculinity and femininity shouldn't be associated with positive/negative traits, prejudice or anything, they exist as neutral traits to me. dunno if makes sense because I can't explain well
                    last.fm

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Misogyny and homophobia exist in society because we're genderified, but that's only my opinion.

                      I didn't wanna describe anything as a sin, sorry if it came off that way

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Airwrecka
                        Originally posted by LionH3art
                        Most people (everyone except peasants) are aware of this now.
                        What's there to say, when everything has been said already.
                        Thank you for that insightful contribution.

                        I doubt you get to see much of the real world up there on your high horse, but perhaps one day you'll grow up enough to offer a mature contribution to a real grown-up issue.
                        ???

                        I meant that in todays society many people are aware of those differences. Advertisements promote gender neutral nowadays, parents let their kids play with whatever they want etc...
                        Only conservative ppl have a hard time coping with this issue AKA peasants.

                        So yeah thanks man for the insults
                        My Best of 2014...|Tumblr|Last.fm|Instagram

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by mrlemonade
                          Originally posted by LionH3art
                          In the end everything are social constructions. And they exist for a reason. Some people are more feminine than masculine, you describe that as a sin or something unwanted ... That's just the way people are - a construct of characteristics, whatever label you want to use doesn't matter. Masculinity is just a label.
                          have to agree with this. to me it's just a trait. yes, it's a social construct. but masculinity and femininity shouldn't be associated with positive/negative traits, prejudice or anything, they exist as neutral traits to me. dunno if makes sense because I can't explain well
                          Yes, I understand and agree.
                          My Best of 2014...|Tumblr|Last.fm|Instagram

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by LionH3art
                            Originally posted by Airwrecka
                            Originally posted by LionH3art
                            Most people (everyone except peasants) are aware of this now.
                            What's there to say, when everything has been said already.
                            Thank you for that insightful contribution.

                            I doubt you get to see much of the real world up there on your high horse, but perhaps one day you'll grow up enough to offer a mature contribution to a real grown-up issue.
                            ???

                            I meant that in todays society many people are aware of those differences. Advertisements promote gender neutral nowadays, parents let their kids play with whatever they want etc...
                            Only conservative ppl have a hard time coping with this issue AKA peasants.

                            So yeah thanks man for the insults
                            Conservative people = peasants ? Thanks for the info.
                            Whitney Houston

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nippian93
                              Conservative people = peasants ? Thanks for the info.
                              "Peasants" is an ongoing dig at me that he likes to have, but of course he acts all shocked and innocent when I expose it. If anyone else had made this post, he'd have participated pleasantly.

                              There are so many people out there who are scared to be their true self or to explore their gender because of social constructions and expectations, and it is a total ignorant disservice to suggest that everyone is aware of the issue and there is nothing left to talk about. Gender Dysphoria is a very real condition, and there are many examples of intolerance and poor education about this topic in society. Instances of abuse and bullying are very common for adults and children struggling with their gender identity.

                              An example of the issues a young transgender girl had to face.

                              This is worth considering too:

                              At school, children or teenagers with a gender identity issue are often subjected to abuse. Bullying can take many forms; isolation and exclusion, insults and name-calling, and even physical attacks. The child or teenager may have great difficulty in dealing with school life, and can struggle to respond appropriately. However, education about gender identity issues in the school environment is very important and can be highly effective when dealing with these problems.

                              Many adults with gender identity issues describe difficulties in childhood. Often they complain of having been very unhappy children and teenagers, and that their suffering had not been recognised early enough by parents and professionals.

                              The earlier this suffering can be recognised, then with the right support and treatment, young people can be helped to tolerate living in these distressing conditions until, having found a solution to the identity conflict, they can experience a happier and less traumatic adulthood.
                              Source

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Airwrecka
                                Originally posted by Nippian93
                                Conservative people = peasants ? Thanks for the info.
                                "Peasants" is an ongoing dig at me that he likes to have, but of course he acts all shocked and innocent when I expose it. If anyone else had made this post, he'd have participated pleasantly."


                                -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                I didn't know, I am sorry, it's really pathetic calling another person with this word. I agree with everything you have written.
                                Whitney Houston

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  There's a lot more awareness now of this but most definitely the majority of people still don't know of this and still enforce rigid gender roles on children and themselves. I think over time it'll get better. We always need more awareness of these things so we can be more understanding and sympathetic to peoples experiences.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by ArmyOfMe
                                    I was having a conversation with a friend of mine last night and she started telling me how she is curious to get physical with girls, but only the feminine ones, and I was like "there's no such thing like "feminine" or "masculine" IMO"
                                    It's all just a matter of gender and the social structures reflecting in our conceptions of feminine and masculine in the end. If that's the case, there are days when I feel more feminine and days when I feel more masculine and I feel no shame about it.
                                    I also hate how people often identify "feminine" gays as bottoms and vice versa, I know quite a few cases that prove the opposite (if identifying 100% with a role in sex is a thing at all). Same goes for lesbians.

                                    I impatiently wait for the day when we finally get rid of all this gender roles nonsense.
                                    This is a great post and sums up pretty much how I feel, my biological sex is male but what actually makes me who I am is beyond terms like male/female 'I' just happen to inhabit this male body. Us humans love labels that's the biggest problem
                                    It might sound like I'm an unapologetic bitch
                                    But sometimes you know I gotta call it like it is

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Madgefan
                                      This is a great post and sums up pretty much how I feel, my biological sex is male but what actually makes me who I am is beyond terms like male/female 'I' just happen to inhabit this male body. Us humans love labels that's the biggest problem
                                      Glad you said that because that is precisely what you do. In fact everyone inhabits a body. In the same way a clownfish lives in a stinging jellyfish.
                                      The fact that you see yourself without "gender" probably means your soul is quite an enlightened one.
                                      Education for anyone aged 12 to 16 has made a mess of the world!

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Many adults with gender identity issues describe difficulties in childhood. Often they complain of having been very unhappy children and teenagers, and that their suffering had not been recognised early enough by parents and professionals.
                                        This does not surprise me. But it's not the kids that are to blame it's the issue at the root cause of many of the World's problems today. The "School" itself is to blame.
                                        If you stick loads of kids about the same age into that kind of place each day then try and pass knowledge of human development on to them by a few people, who have often little experience of it (having just completed education themselves). Especially when the emphasises of education is on practical stuff, such as maths, English or science. Then what is going to happen is that such children will grow up with childish behaviour. Picking on others who are different. Because they will learn not from professionals or parents (in fact the human body during the teenage years is designed to ignore parental advice). They learn instead from those around them. Which leaves a lot to be desired. I cannot see many people allowing their kids to be taught by a 14 year old kid. But that precisely is what happens in schools, though the age of the pupil and who gives this advice will change according to each child being taught in a school.
                                        I don't think you can find an experienced person to deal with issues like gender in a school, even if you did (for every school) they probably have only a marginal effect, since the "culture" that is built it every school will cancel it out. It would be like telling the teenager into loud rock music (just like the Jackson video) to turn it down!
                                        The solution is to integrate young people into society with adults, while providing education of the maths etc,. Not keeping them in day jails for kids!
                                        When the world realises this, then the World will be a better place for all.
                                        Education for anyone aged 12 to 16 has made a mess of the world!

                                        Comment


                                        • #21
                                          Interesting stance, Graham. I think there is definitely something thought-provoking in your argument, although I'm not sure what the solution is? Send kids to work as interns at the age of 5?

                                          Comment


                                          • #22
                                            Originally posted by Airwrecka
                                            Interesting stance, Graham. I think there is definitely something thought-provoking in your argument, although I'm not sure what the solution is? Send kids to work as interns at the age of 5?
                                            Gender issues and the real personality of a person doesn't really kick in until after the age of 12, generally after puberty starts altering the body. It's then when the child starts thinking serious about how it fits in with society and the people around them. Before that sending kids to school doesn't effect the later development. It wasn't till after compulsory education after 13 years of age was introduced in most countries did any real issues arise.
                                            Of course in underdeveloped countries children do work at very young ages, as they used to do in the UK during the industrial revolution. But I don't think it helps them to develop their minds better. Even way back in the past during the hunter/gatherer period (when the basics of human personal development was formed) very young children were probably in the kind of protective environment that a "school" would offer, with them grouped together, cared for by just a few members of the tribe.
                                            You do have to bear in mind that some parents educate their kids at home. Other children do work quite legally and nobody thinks it's wrong. Such as child actors. They might already grow up differently to those just given formal education. Since they probably mix with a wider range of adults than most kids do. However the pressure of society, might damage this development. In an effort to prevent or more likely "protect" young people from the "abuse" of adults, by keeping adults away from them and encouraging the mixing with people of their own age. Similarly the home educated child might also lack the presence of adults that are not relations as they mature.
                                            Another thing you have to consider is that the young person has to mix with a wide age range of people. It would be no use sending them to place of work where there are 20 of them to just a few adults. That would be no different to a school. Though at least they would not be a burden on the Tax system that school is today! About 50% of Council spending goes on education of the young.
                                            Education for anyone aged 12 to 16 has made a mess of the world!

                                            Comment


                                            • #23
                                              It will never leave because it will always be taught. It can be anything, ranging from violence to racial discrimination to gender discrimination.
                                              Please Stop the Music

                                              Comment


                                              • #24
                                                A question I'd like to ask/contribute - is gender fluidity important and if yes, why so?
                                                MadeOfBricks Chart of All Time.

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                                                • #25
                                                  Isn't everyone in here forgetting what we are all here for?
                                                  Well, it's called sex. Passing our genes onto the next generation.
                                                  Males carry XY chromosomes and females XX. So there is a role assigned to every one of us at birth, label it or not, we are biologically different.

                                                  Homosexuality is a mechanism intended for population control, happening in most other species. Maybe this misidentity issue has the same origin... But has it been shown where genetically it happens? Or is it a pure environmental thing?
                                                  I really don't know enough to be able to comment on it, but I have a few questions.

                                                  When, in history, did transsexuality begun? And where does it occur in the world? Everywhere equally? Does it occurr in native tribes?
                                                  I am the maniac, I am the ghoul
                                                  I'm in the shadows in the corners of my room

                                                  Comment


                                                  • #26
                                                    Originally posted by Crackiswack
                                                    It will never leave because it will always be taught. It can be anything, ranging from violence to racial discrimination to gender discrimination.
                                                    Perhaps true, though it might be more to do with genetics than teaching. But if it is taught, then it's getting worse and the cause of that is the education system. Keeping young teenagers in a school with 100's of them is asking for trouble. Ask yourself what do they really know? Do they have the common sense to even recognise what they might be doing to others is wrong?
                                                    I do think that people have developed positive attitudes to dealing with discrimination from being at school during those formative years. However I don't think it is from "anti-sexist" or any other "anti" training they had. More likely from being in situations where these things have happened. Either to themselves or others. And they were disgusted by it, or tried to get things done to stop it and were greeted with the usual excuses from teachers or family. "They will grow out of it". "Time to man up". "Walk like a man". "Big Girls don't cry". And the rest....
                                                    Many schools are also "faith" schools. Children going to those schools with conflicting views about gender, will not be greeted by just those who just don't like them for being different, but will have the moral thing labelled on them. Outright prejudiced from the people who are there "officially" to advise and help them grow.
                                                    Even teachers from normal schools have 20 or more pupils to deal with. They don't simply have the time to deal with each child. So each child will have to deal with their fellow pupils. Confide in them if they can. But if you have gender issues. It would be like a Justin Bieber fan hanging around with 20 Iron Maiden fans! Then trying to find one that at least gets where your at with being a Bieber fan!
                                                    Education for anyone aged 12 to 16 has made a mess of the world!

                                                    Comment


                                                    • #27
                                                      Originally posted by BLover
                                                      Homosexuality is a mechanism intended for population control, happening in most other species.
                                                      Homosexuality is an invention of major labels to make Taylor Swift sell

                                                      Comment


                                                      • #28
                                                        Originally posted by ArmyOfMe
                                                        Originally posted by BLover
                                                        Homosexuality is a mechanism intended for population control, happening in most other species.
                                                        Homosexuality is an invention of major labels to make Taylor Swift sell
                                                        Hmm or that, but overpopulation is a serious issue to species' populations. Hence it has an evolutionary meaning, being a genetic alteration, and happening in the vast majority of species. Every thing you do, crave or act upon has been shaped by evolution, whether you disregard it or not.
                                                        I am the maniac, I am the ghoul
                                                        I'm in the shadows in the corners of my room

                                                        Comment


                                                        • #29
                                                          Originally posted by BLover
                                                          Isn't everyone in here forgetting what we are all here for?
                                                          Well, it's called sex. Passing our genes onto the next generation.
                                                          Males carry XY chromosomes and females XX. So there is a role assigned to every one of us at birth, label it or not, we are biologically different.

                                                          Homosexuality is a mechanism intended for population control, happening in most other species. Maybe this misidentity issue has the same origin... But has it been shown where genetically it happens? Or is it a pure environmental thing?
                                                          I really don't know enough to be able to comment on it, but I have a few questions.

                                                          When, in history, did transsexuality begun? And where does it occur in the world? Everywhere equally? Does it occurr in native tribes?
                                                          There are actually a number of differences between Homosexuality and Transgender. In the latter the person might not want to have sex with a person of the same sex. They simply want to be a member of the opposite sex. Medical advances since about 1900 have meant that they can become a person of the opposite sex. However even when they have had a full sex change they might still have the sexuality that they had before the change and still love the person they were having sex with before. So if a man changes to a woman, they might thus become a lesbian, where's as before they were, in most people's eyes - straight!
                                                          Gay people have no desire to change sex to accommodate the need to have sex with the same gender. I don't believe that being gay in any species is intended to control the population. It might do that, but current thinking is that it's either a "fault" or an adaption that is being genetically passed on. You can argue it does have social benefits to society. Producing more caring males or harder females.
                                                          As all embryos are female to start it's not surprising that some see themselves as female that are born male. I suppose it's a bit harder to imagine the other way around. But one could see it as the male part being more dominate than the female embryo. But most science people think that the sexuality and other things are coded in the DNA, not in the chromosomes.
                                                          Since DNA is common to us all, it will have been with us since the first person that we are all descended from. I woman that scientists have called "Eve" found in Africa who lived thousands of years ago.
                                                          It is therefore all around the world. Though how common will depend on the variants in the gene pool.
                                                          Clothing is often an indication of cross gender issues. But it's actual more cultural than anything else shows. As this picture of a 17th Century Spanish BOY implies:
                                                          Education for anyone aged 12 to 16 has made a mess of the world!

                                                          Comment


                                                          • #30
                                                            Originally posted by BLover
                                                            Originally posted by ArmyOfMe
                                                            Originally posted by BLover
                                                            Homosexuality is a mechanism intended for population control, happening in most other species.
                                                            Homosexuality is an invention of major labels to make Taylor Swift sell
                                                            Hmm or that, but overpopulation is a serious issue to species' populations. Hence it has an evolutionary meaning, being a genetic alteration, and happening in the vast majority of species. Every thing you do, crave or act upon has been shaped by evolution, whether you disregard it or not.
                                                            How is this an evolutionary trait? Population control implies this kicks in when overpopulation is occuring, what is the feedback mechanism for this ? And also isn't it a little too late once the population has already reached a critical level. Genes cannot predict the future they can only be shaped Natural Selection, that is by an organism's adaptation to its environment.

                                                            For it to work as a method of natural selection it would have to favour a gene that limited the reproduction of an individual and then pass that gene on. By it's very nature homosexuality decreases the likelihood of having children therefore such a gene would have a poor rate of transfer from one generation to another, not a particularly reliable method to control anything I'm sure you would agree.

                                                            I do think homosexuality is genetic but I certainly don't believe it is for population control .... nature cannot predict the future.
                                                            It might sound like I'm an unapologetic bitch
                                                            But sometimes you know I gotta call it like it is

                                                            Comment

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