About the Transgender Law
The controversial Transgender Law, promoted by the Ministry of Equality, is a recognition of the freedom and right of each individual to express their gender identity according to their innermost feelings. In this sense, it is a liberal law that defends the fundamental rights of a community that until relatively recently was discriminated against. In fact, transsexuality was a disease until 2018, when it was withdrawn from the list of mental diseases by the WHO.
The draft law allows people free self-determination of gender, which means that anyone can change their name and sex in the civil registry only with an express declaration, from the age of 16. The conflict derived from this is not in the recognition of the rights of transgender persons to be treated and recognized as their perceived gender, but in the "mechanism" of the process of change from recognized gender to perceived gender.
LGTBI organizations argue that any person who does not conform to their recognized gender can apply for the change in the civil registry without any psychological or physiological treatment. Some feminist voices, on the other hand, believe that this "free sex change" is a perversion of the concept of gender, since one can define who one is at any time, and thus the concept of woman as such disappears and feminism's struggle for the recognition of women's rights fades away, since as a result the female gender does not continue to exist "as something stable”.
What is the process of gender reassignment? The official change of name and gender is reviewed by a specialized psychologist for one year, completed by two years of continuous hormone therapy as a sign of "permanence". At the end, a document is issued stating that the person does not have a mental disorder that would militate against transition, and finally promotes the transition.
The reality of a gender identity transition process, based on my actual experience:
1. When a child is born, they have early signs of a discrepancy (dysphoria) between their recognized gender and their felt gender. However, the process feel that it is a gender dysphoria requires a complex internal process that requires intensive and long support from the family environment and specialized psychologists.
2. There is a wide range of psychological situations that can make a person believe that they wish to change their identity without it being real such as acceptance problems in childhood or pathological sexual deviations caused by wearing clothes of the opposite gender. It has been proven that a false transition can cause frustration, depression and in many cases suicide.
3. Starting a life as a woman when you were raised as a man - or vice versa - cannot be equated with what your name is or whether you wear a tie or heels. One must deconstruct the complete education according to one's recognized gender and start a learning process with one's perceived gender. To walk this path "in solitude" is impossible. Psychological support is indispensable during this process.
4. I do not deny the fact that there are individuals who choose to transition gender and keep their body and physical appearance in the "original" way, but it is a minimal percentage. The vast majority wish to look and feel like the "new" gender.
The process is rigid and should be more flexible in terms of timing because not everyone has the same confidence to make the transition. More trained specialists are needed. We also need to extend the support to our environment, because our families and friends need to have a clearer understanding of the reality. In addition, social security need to increase and improve the support of the processes related to physical aspects.
To think that a person does not need this attention, support and necessary physiological treatments to feel harmony between their body and gender has nothing to do with reality. So does the assumption that men use this mechanism of gender reassignment without supervision to gain social advantages.
The reality will remain rather unchanged for now. People with a gender identity problem will continue to have a hard time living out their freedom and feeling the way they want to. This is because making laws is not about writing "good things," but about solving problems in order to live freely.
Eva Díaz, #FemaleForward Ambassador, educated in Mechanical Engineering and with more than 20 years of executive management experience in the consulting sector; committed to society and its environment on issues as relevant as gender equality, diversity, and the impact of technology on society and business.
Born in 1962, she completed her gender identity transition process in 2015, being able to maintain her professional and personal activity during this process and becoming a reference for a transitioned and female executive.