[quote="st_felicity, post:16, topic:224330"]
Don't take this wrong, I mean no offense, but I'm not convinced that there is a "typical female" experience--in an individual. What I mean is that individually, we experience life differently--it is all relative to our personal perception. I can understand feeling that your feelings of self-identification align with what is described as stereotypically female, but I think it is a tad sexist to assume that there is such a thing as "the female experience."
*I think you have misunderstood what I was trying to say or perhaps I didn't make it as clear as I should have. I wasn't implying that there is a "typical female" experience. What I was trying to say is that apart from physical anatomy there is something in me that makes me feel that I am not what my anatomy indicated I was. I understand there is a wide range of behaviors. My undergraduate degree is in Psychology, so I am aware of what you are saying, but just by observation that would be aparaent. I don't think a person needs a degree in psychology to understand that. I agree that there is no stereotypical female experience. I cannot say that what I feel is what every woman feels. I just know what I feel. By "experience" I was just trying to say that in my existence, as I experieced life, there was something inside me saying that I was not what my anatomy was indicating I was. I wasn't like the other individuals (other boys, my brothers, cousins etc.) who had the same anatomy. Before I was even aware of anatomical differences, something inside me told me I was like my mom not my dad, and like my girl cousins, not my brothers.*For example--I am female, and I have always identified as such, but I have many traits that may be viewed as "stereotypically male." For example--I am assertive, confident, assume roles of authority, athletic, not squeamish, cerebral....those are not "typical female" traits, but I am very much a woman--not because I act a certain way or look a certain way, or like certain things--I just AM--the anatomy says so, and I accept it.
Where you say "I just AM" a woman, I feel that way myself, I just feel that I am, based only on that's how I feel. However, you say your anatomy says so so you accept it. In my case my anatomy did not, but somewhere inside me, separate from my anatomy, something was telling me that I am a woman. That realization was there from my earliest memories. What I would like to ask you though is that if ,feeling as you do that you are a woman, if you happenned to have found yourself growing up having male anatomy and being considered male, would you have been able accept that and been able to function emotionally and socially as a male? To me there seems to be a distinction apart from anatomy that determines the individuals self concept of gender. Where I said, "I had the attractions and feelings of most young women", I was just trying to say in a more polite manner that I was attracted in a romantic and emotional way to men. I understand that that in itself is not the determining factor that makes a woman a woman, but when you asked abut the long term consequences of my physical transition I was trying to say, in a more refined manner, how I felt.
Because of that, it seems to me that what is labeled as "transgender" feelings has to lie somewhere other than what "cultures" label as female or male traits. It seems to me it is a dissatisfaction with societies' acceptance of the differences among people rather than a dissatisfaction with self. And if it is a dissatisfaction with self resulting from an individual's perception of themselves, then wouldn't that be rather a mental disorder (though certainly may be a disorder caused by brain chemistry)...
Thus, treating the "problem" by giving in to the delusion--even if it gives comfort--seems contrary to promoting health, both mental and physical.
Although there is no specific single answer as to why some feel the way I did, at present it seems to be attributed to brain structures and brain chemistry. I guess we would get into semantics as to whether my depression was caused by a "dissatisfaction with self". I feel my depression was caused by having to live everyday as someone other than who I felt I was. To me that was more from not being able to be like the persons I considered more like me, meaning other girls. I didn't hate myself as a boy, or hate other boys. I just felt that everyday that I developed in one direction, it was taking me farther way from the person I felt I was. I inerstand this could be hard to comprehend, but it was just the way I felt.