Do you think that sex-change operations should be...

Kenneth Fort Kenneth Fort
...Easier and open for anyone who wants to get, without needing a doctor to confirm it's best for them? (provided you live in a place where that's what happens.) That it's oppressive for a personal person to need to get "approved" for one. Do you think the current level is good? Should there be even more hurdles, assuming you think it should be only for those who won't regret it, and some might get it who it shouldn't apply to?
10/27/2012
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kendra30752 kendra30752
What do you mean easier and open for anyone? I figured it was as easy to.. .accquire for anybody no matter what. Are we talking like a doctor denying this surgery due to health? It being too risky? The person not being in good enough health to heal from it? Then, that's their ethical decision. But otherwise, I don't understand what the diff. are for diff. people? Money-wise, I see that making it harder or easier for diff. people. I had to get "approved" to have surgery for endometriosis, so I doubt it's an act of discrimination for this surgery to be approved first. Any time you have a surgery, no matter the operation, you have to be "approved" meaning you have to be considered stable/healthy enough to be able to have an operation.

Do we think the current level is good? WHAT is the current level!? What are the hurdles? Just curious because I'd probably have to know what these things were before saying. Of course I think it should be discussed in case someone may regret it. Any doctor in their right mind will want to be as certain as possible that the person won't later hate their lives for changing themselves. Sounds like these are all normal things doctors will need to be sure of before performing.
10/27/2012
Ansley Ansley
Quote:
Originally posted by kendra30752
What do you mean easier and open for anyone? I figured it was as easy to.. .accquire for anybody no matter what. Are we talking like a doctor denying this surgery due to health? It being too risky? The person not being in good enough health to heal ... More
A lot of trans people are denied approval for top or bottom surgeries due to a doctor feeling like they aren't ready emotionally for the transition.

There have been efforts to make transitioning by surgery covered under insurance policies, but that's slow going and only a few states include it.

After all of the documentaries I have seen where post-op trans persons are still unhappy and regret getting the surgery (there's almost always a complication that makes them feel like it wasn't worth it), I think doctors are not inclined to approve the surgery just because someone thinks they want it. It's a very long, painful process.

You have to be in therapy for a certain period of time -- basically you have to jump through hoops and the rejection a trans person may feel because of these hoops only serves to keep them in therapy and out of the operating room.

I know it isn't exactly the same thing, but I've always compared it to the girl with really, really low self-esteem who gets her breasts or her nose done and thinks she's going to wake up feeling perfect and realizes that once the bruising and incisions have healed, it's still her. She's still the same girl in her mind she was before the surgery and it doesn't do anything to fix her emotional issues with herself.
10/27/2012
Mwar Mwar
I don't know. From the professional side (doctors, scientists, etc). they can get in trouble for lawsuits. I think that's also what makes them decline patients.
10/27/2012
Andrew1992 Andrew1992
It does make sense for the doctor. These are usually major, irreversible surgeries.
10/28/2012
Supervixen Supervixen
Quote:
Originally posted by Mwar
I don't know. From the professional side (doctors, scientists, etc). they can get in trouble for lawsuits. I think that's also what makes them decline patients.
Exactly. With such a huge, life altering surgery, I think doctors have to protect themselves from lawsuits.

Personally, I think people should do whatever they want with their bodies, but when you need to employ someone else to change it for you, then you're involving another person. From an ethical standpoint, doctors need to know that they are doing the right thing, and I think that's why there are so many hoops to jump through.
10/28/2012
hanjonatan hanjonatan
it should certainly be "easier to obtain" than it is in some places, yeah. some places have a lot of hoops one has to jump through, no option of a second opinion if your doctor turns down your request, etc. that has to change for sure.
11/01/2012
Gracefire Gracefire
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley
A lot of trans people are denied approval for top or bottom surgeries due to a doctor feeling like they aren't ready emotionally for the transition.

There have been efforts to make transitioning by surgery covered under insurance policies, ... More
Wait, wait, wait...In reference to your "girl getting a nose/boob job" analogy, are you saying that gender reassignment surgeries are not generally beneficial to trans* people, and that being trans* is an "emotional issue"?
11/02/2012
Alyxx Alyxx
I think the "hoops" are there for good reason. I do think the surgery should be made easier to obtain cost wise, but I agree with the rigorous psychological testing and the process required before a doctor actually does the procedure. This is a major, life altering surgery and not something to be done lightly. The doctors face a huge risk of lawsuit if the person is unhappy after the surgery, and the person who receives it risks even more if they get it done and later realize it isn't what they really wanted to do. I think the general requirements of long term counseling and living as the preferred sex for an extended period of time before the surgery is done is a good precaution for both the doctors and the patients, however there should be more financially available options for both the counseling and the surgery itself. People shouldn't have to spend every penny they have to be able to be who they really are.
11/02/2012
Gracefire Gracefire
Quote:
Originally posted by Alyxx
I think the "hoops" are there for good reason. I do think the surgery should be made easier to obtain cost wise, but I agree with the rigorous psychological testing and the process required before a doctor actually does the procedure. This ... More
But, see, this kind of mentality assumes that gender reassignment surgery is something that a trans* person enters into lightly, which I can guarantee you is not the case. I know several people who have gotten some form of gender reassignment surgery (both on the MtF and FtM side) and in every occasion, it was something that the person had wanted for years before they actually started seeking it out. One of those people even had their surgery botched in a pretty dramatic way and, while they regret their choice of doctor, they have never regretted wanting or getting the surgery.

Do doctors need to protect themselves from liability issues? Absolutely. But all too often, the "waiting times" imposed are completely arbitrary and subject to the personal prejudices of the doctor. And this is wrong. A patient has every right to have input into their medical care. In the case of a trans* person, this is not something that can be seen on an MRI, or measured with blood tests - the doctor has to (and should!) trust their patient.

Are there people who would enter into hormones/gender reassignment surgery rashly? I'm sure there are, even if I have never met one (and I am heavily involved in the trans* community). But that is what we have waivers and consent forms for. As long as a doctor does their due diligence by properly and thoroughly informing their patient of any risks associated with the medical procedures they are about to undergo, then they have ethically and legally fulfilled their obligations as a doctor.
11/02/2012
Jewlickah Jewlickah
Quote:
Originally posted by Gracefire
But, see, this kind of mentality assumes that gender reassignment surgery is something that a trans* person enters into lightly, which I can guarantee you is not the case. I know several people who have gotten some form of gender reassignment ... More
You just said everything I couldn't articulate. Perfect.
11/02/2012
hanjonatan hanjonatan
Quote:
Originally posted by Alyxx
I think the "hoops" are there for good reason. I do think the surgery should be made easier to obtain cost wise, but I agree with the rigorous psychological testing and the process required before a doctor actually does the procedure. This ... More
ok, but being turned away from something that you need to be able to function is also "major" and potentially life-ruining, and that *is* something that is done quite lightly by medical professionals in many places.

i'd be very careful to throw around vague statements like "the hoops are there for good reason" if i were you. and in many cases the "precautions" are detrimental to a person's well-being and health, especially when people can still be turned away for not conforming well enough to the standards set by the gatekeepers, including but not limited to how well they conform to their expected gender roles.

i mean, you are forced to put your life in the hands of another person, and where i live, you don't even have a right to a second opinion. how are those "hoops" there "for good reason"?
11/03/2012
charletnarouh charletnarouh
i think it should definitely be easier. For liability issues there is education and information and consent forms and liability releases. If the patient is informed of the risks, has been advised of what everything they need to know, then i don't think it should be harder to get GRS than to get any other surgery, especially if you are paying out of pocket.
Though, it's important to consider what you are comparing to. Is GRS and FTM top surgery a body modification or cosmetic surgery, some of which are even medically necessary, such as breast reduction for a woman experiencing back pain or eyelid surgery for a patient who is having trouble seeing, or is it, perhaps, like a surgery to correct a deformity of some kind, or is it closer to a surgery for an illness like an appendectomy. i think one of the problems is that GRS and top surgery are generally set aside in their own category which means the medical community gets to make decisions about how to deal with them in a special way instead of based on putting it in a category to apply some kind of template or procedure that already exits.
The only loophole in this is that doctors have that Hippocratic oath to do no harm that i could see coming into play but that's really just education of the doctors to understand how much harm denying a patient this kind of treatment can do.
i can, however, see insurance companies requiring you to jump through some hoops before they will pay for it. They require a doctor to sign off that you need any other kind of surgery before they will cover it, it makes sense for them to have a doctor sign off that GRS or top surgery is medically necessary for the patient's wellbeing. You can't, after all, generally show up and slap down your insurance card and request a spleen-ectomy or any other surgery. If that was the case, i wouldn't have my tonsils! Though i think they need to be careful to make sure that GRS isn't harder to get than other surgeries. It just needs to be handled comparably to some other category of surgeries, we just need to find a category to put it in that makes sense and is fair.
11/03/2012
MidnightStorm MidnightStorm
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley
A lot of trans people are denied approval for top or bottom surgeries due to a doctor feeling like they aren't ready emotionally for the transition.

There have been efforts to make transitioning by surgery covered under insurance policies, ... More
I agree with your comparison Stormy, although I understand that the situation is often far more complex than that for a trans* person. Honestly, it's a hard question to answer and I don't know that I can really say one way or another that it "should definitely be this way" or "it should definitely be that way." On one hand, this is a life-altering surgery that, as others have said, no one should enter in to lightly. On the other hand, doesn't everyone have a right to choose what they want to do to their body (even if that transformation may potentially be a mistake)? I have a tendency, when I think of people I don't know, to fall towards the latter side of the spectrum. It's your body, so if you want to have a life-altering surgery or physically irreversible surgery, it's your choice. Who am I to tell you not to?

However, when I think of people I know and love, it gets a little more complicated. I've known a number of trans* individuals who have struggled with their identity for many years and sometimes realize that perhaps they are something else entirely after living as a male/female for an extended length of time. I can only imagine how confusing (and awful) it would be for someone who was, say, born biologically male but felt female all their lives to participate in gender-reassignment surgery and find out a year or so later that they made a mistake. What happens to this person then? In an extreme scenario, what happens if no one ever asks; "Are you sure you want to do this?" or if no one ever really challenges them to find out why they want to do it. I think it is possible that there are legitimate and not-so-legitimate reasons for wanting to have the surgery because it is not a black and white thing. Beyond this, the body is a confusing thing of and in itself and people change constantly... I would never wish a fate like that one someone I knew if I knew I could prevent it. ( This isn't to say that there aren't trans* individuals who are completely prepared for the surgery, just that the stakes for sending an individual who isn't prepared are pretty high. )
11/03/2012
hem hem
Check out Dean Spade's article "Mutilating Gender." It has some neat things to say about this.
11/03/2012
smlove smlove
Quote:
Originally posted by Kenneth Fort
...Easier and open for anyone who wants to get, without needing a doctor to confirm it's best for them? (provided you live in a place where that's what happens.) That it's oppressive for a personal person to need to get ... More
The process is there because unfortunately there have been a few people that weren't ready and jumped into it, and then realized they weren't transgendered. then they were pretty fucked, cause there really isn't a reverse-sex-change operation.
It sucks that you need "approval", like you have to prove something to someone else. but I think seeing a therapist is helpful because having someone to talk to about any issues you're going through really does make you feel better.
also, Christine McGuin, a transwoman and transgender surgeon, says EVERYONE hits a heavy depression period after surgery. whether it be immediately, or a few months afterwards, you need to have a relationship with a therapist because they can help you through that depression.
obviously it should be someone you feel comfortable with and won't just jam a bunch of drugs down your throat.

I wish I had had a therapist after I had my cosmetic surgery. I had lipo for weight loss because my joints can't handle how heavy I am. I definitely hit a depression about a month afterwards. it was mostly due to being frustrated at being immobile for that long. I made it through, but it would have been a lot easier to have someone to talk to that was unbiased.

I think if there were more doctors and therapists trained and OPEN (cause there is still a ridiculous amount of transphobia and homophobia) to these issues, the process would be smoother and less aggravating.
11/05/2012
TheParrishism TheParrishism
The problem is not as easy as making it "Easier." Some of the hurtles are there for a reason and for good causes. There is a long process of offering shortcuts and getting ripped off for doing so. Financially sure, but emotional stability is incredibly important.
11/13/2012
XYCopperheadSly XYCopperheadSly
Quote:
Originally posted by Supervixen
Exactly. With such a huge, life altering surgery, I think doctors have to protect themselves from lawsuits.

Personally, I think people should do whatever they want with their bodies, but when you need to employ someone else to change it for ... More
Beautifully said.
11/13/2012
needapacker needapacker
Quote:
Originally posted by Kenneth Fort
...Easier and open for anyone who wants to get, without needing a doctor to confirm it's best for them? (provided you live in a place where that's what happens.) That it's oppressive for a personal person to need to get ... More
No. The standards are there for a reason.
11/20/2012
Innocent Mathias Innocent Mathias
should be my choice
11/22/2012
eroticmutt eroticmutt
Quote:
Originally posted by Kenneth Fort
...Easier and open for anyone who wants to get, without needing a doctor to confirm it's best for them? (provided you live in a place where that's what happens.) That it's oppressive for a personal person to need to get ... More
Just a secret I found out: some doctors are up in the clouds, riding on power and a textbook idea of who 'should' be which gender. That's not for a doctor to decide. At the end of the day, the only one feeling what you feel and the only person you will 100% definitely be stuck with the rest of your life is yourself.

If one doctor isn't cooperating, go to a different one! There are LOTS of doctors who will even do surgery WITHOUT a letter. It's not a legal requirement, it's just a bit of paperwork that people have fallen into the habit of.

Sure you may need to call 3, 6, even 10 doctors but YES they will do it without a letter. Already got two surgeries done (all the extra parts removed) and already have two other surgeries I am looking forward to, not gonna need a note for either of them.
11/26/2012
Mediumsizedman Mediumsizedman
No it should not be open to just anyone. It makes sense not only for the doctor/surgeon (for legal reasons), but also for the actual person themselves.
12/10/2012
GONE! GONE!
I think they should be lowered, yes, but I am also open to a different solution.
Keep some hurdles, but require them for ALL plastic surgery instead!
After all, it's not fair that someone can get their entire face (And identity + place in society redefined as a result, you know it's true. Beautiful people are treated differently.) reconstructed for shits and giggles if they want but someone can't get their body fixes to align with who they are inside without therapy and all that.
But something tells me most people wouldn't like that very much.
02/11/2013
Total posts: 23
Unique posters: 21