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Terminology

Transsexual- A person who believes that they are the opposite gender to which they were born into genetically.

Transgendered- A person who does not feel as though they completely fall into the gender that they were born into. This is usually viewed as an umbrella term that would include crossdressers and transsexuals.

Crossdresser aka transvestite – A person who enjoys wearing clothes of the opposite
gender. They may or may not have gender identity issues.

Gender Identity – Whether you identify as male or female. This is not the same as sexual
identity.

Sexual Identity – Who you are sexually attracted to – women, men or both

MTF –Male to Female transsexual (sometimes referred to as a transwoman)

FTM – Female to Male transsexual (sometimes referred to as a transman)

RLE (Real Life Experience) Living fulltime in the new gender. Required prior to having
sexual reassignment surgery.

FFS - Facial Feminization Surgery - A type of plastic surgery that modifies the soft tissue and bony structure of the face to make it appear more feminine. Changes can be distinctive but are also
subtle.

Sexual Reassignment Surgery (SRS) / alternatively Genital Reassignment Surgery
(GRS)- Genital surgery (vaginoplasty for MTF/ phalloplasy for FTM)

WPATH (World Professional Association for Transgender Health) formerly the HBIGDA –(Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Assoc.)-Organization founded by the endocrinologist, Harry Benjamin, comprised of doctors and gender therapists involved in the research on gender or treatment of patients with gender identity issues.

NCTE (National Center for Transgender Equality) - National social justice organization dedicated to furthering the rights of gender variant people

MTPC (Massachusetts Transgender Politcal Coalition) - Local organization dedicated to ending discrimination on the basis of gender identity and gender expression.

Standards of Care (SoC) - The original Standards of Care are a set of guidelines devised and maintained by the HBIGDA. They were drafted in 1979 as a protocol for dealing with gender identity therapy and care. Its primary purposes are to set guidelines that medical practitioners/therapists follow when treating those with gender identity issues. According to the standards:
Minimum 3 months treatment with a gender therapist prior to approval of hormone therapy. Minimum 1 year RLE prior to having SRS performed. Click here to download the complete SoC

GID (Gender Identity Disorder aka Gender Dysphoria – The psychiatric diagnosis given transsexuals vis a vis their discomfort with their biological gender. 

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