July 29, 2016

The Pseudo-Science of Autogynephilia

Lisa Mullin, trans woman and trans activist, has actively documented how the so-called "autogynephilia" theory of Ray Blanchard, J. Michael Bailey and Anne Lawrence has been used to invalidate the identities of transgender people, even if the theory is bad science based on debunked stereotypes. 
Lili Elbe, "The Danish Girl", would have to be classified
as an "autoygnephiliac" according to the Blancahrdian
system, which means that she will look masculine
 and have male mannerisms. The fact that none of this
is true, means nothing to the AGP supporters.

In this guest post Lisa gives a clear and succinct summary of "AGP" absurdities.

By Guest Writer Lisa Mullin

Be prepared for sarcasm, but the following is actually all based on what Ray Blanchard, Alice Dreger, J. Michael Bailey etc have stated.

'Autogynephilia' (AGP) is an mysterious ailment with strange symptoms and effects: It is only about sexual desires, no human being (cis or trans) has a gender identity.

Everything an AGP trans woman does is motivated by sex; if  she want to go to a bathroom it is not because they want to pee -- it is only for sexual reasons.

97% to 99% of trans women have it; the rest are just sex mad gay men obsessed about having lots of sex with large numbers of straight men and are "particularly well suited to prostitution". These trans women "shoplift" a lot.

Autogynephilia 

Ray Blanchard's stigmatizing autogynephilia concept (meaning "to love of oneself as a woman") refers to the idea that male to female transgender people (crossdressers and trans women included) who are attracted to women are suffering from a sexual perversion: 

"a man's paraphilic tendency to be sexually aroused by the thought or image of himself as a woman." (1) 

All other trans women are effeminate gay men, according to Blanchard & Co.
If you deny having autogynephilia, it means you have it.

AGP applies to any trans women 'coming out' after puberty starts -- yes, you are an AGP ‘pervert’ at 12.

'EVERY' female attracted trans woman (no matter by how little or how seldom) has it.

'EVERY' trans woman who has had sex with a woman, even if they were (like many gay men) in the closet, trying to be straight and didn't even like it, has it.

If you were NEVER attracted to women, not even once, and were only ever attracted to males but 'came out' as trans after puberty started, you are really AGP (and a 'pseudo' gay).

The condition distorts memories and makes people believe they had trans feelings as a child; no AGP person has ever had trans feelings as a kid.

It distorts memories in trans women to make them believe they never got sexually aroused at 'purely' thinking they were a woman, they always do.

If a trans woman gets aroused at the thought of having sex with someone else, their mind is being distorted and it is really just about them about being self aroused at being a woman.

Female to male trans men can never have it.

Women (straight or lesbian) can never have it.

Gay men can never have it, so if a gay man transitions they don't have it.

Trans women who start life as a gay men and have a positive AGP score are really straight as they are 'pseudo gays'.

Asexual trans women have it, even though they have no sexual interest in anything else.

AGP causes all asexuality in trans women.

A single occurrence in your life means you always have it (even if it was 50 years ago and you were 12 and drunk).

It causes all bisexualty in trans women

Cis bisexual men are all really gay, but bisexual trans women are all really straight (relative to birth sex) and hence have AGP.

Unlike any other sexual paraphilia reducing the sex drive (by using T blockers) does not affect it.

Castration does not affect it.

Removal of penis does not affect it.

It causes, or is caused by (the literature is confused),  transvestic fetishism.

Trans women who deny having it are lying.

EVERY trans kid is really an ’effeminate’ gay man or a ‘butch’ lesbian, if they are natal male and female attracted then they are really AGP and not a trans kid.

If they are natal female and male attracted then we don't talk about that.

Some argue that AGP can start before puberty and before any sexual feelings. Yes, some trans people must really be 'born' with AGP.

J. Michael Bailey, the Donald Trump of sexology, argues that a
man loving trans woman 's "...ability to enjoy emotionally
meaningless sex appears male-typical.  In this sense, homosexual
transsexuals might be especially well-suited to prostitution." Bailey
gets turned on by such women, but find AGP trans women
unattractive. And yes he calls trans women who loves
men "homosexual". All in the name of "science".

Wait, there is more:

Some  supporters of the theory argue that autogynephilia is far, far more than a sexual paraphilia, but an AGP person forms a 'love bond' with their female identity, similar as to how heterosexual men love their wives. Yes, AGP trans women 'pair bond' with an imaginary person created by themselves.

Every trans activist has AGP -- even trans kids like Jazz Jennings. By definition (it seems) being an activist is a symptom of AGP. Non-AGP trans women are all too busy having sex with straight men for money and painting their nails to be activists.

The definition of AGP is so broad that if you applied it to others then:
  • Most cis women would not be classified as ‘really’ female.
  • Many gay men would not be classified as ‘really’ gay but as ‘pseudo’ gays.
  • Many lesbians would not be classified as ‘really’ lesbian but as ‘pseudo’ lesbians.
Proponents of AGP are telepathic and can read trans women's minds and diagnose them with AGP, even from the other side of the world. They have no need for tiresome counselling to determine peoples' thoughts and feelings, a single look at a magazine picture is enough for them to be 100% correct in their diagnosis.

If a bisexual trans woman wants to have sex with a man, the proponents read their mind and can tell that they are not really attracted to the man at all, they are just having an AGP fantasy.

AGP proponents have no need for the normal rules of experimentation, science, logic and statistics. A weak (and questionable) correlation using an incorrect statistical test on a dodgy sample is turned into a ‘100% causality’ by them.

Rules about circular logic do not apply to them, such as ‘trans women's bisexuality is caused by AGP, they are AGP because they are bisexual’.

Occam’s Razor is a quaint affectation to them: AGP now has multiple types, multiple causes with whole new categories being created such as ‘pseudo bisexuality’ or ‘pseudo homosexuality’ or ‘self pair bonding’ ….

Wow, what a condition! We need more work on this unique, like no other sex (or anything actually) related condition in the world...

Then again you could just treat it as stigmatising pseudo-scientific claptrap created to fulfill an ideology originally invented to 'cure sissy boys' of homosexuality, now extended into an anti-trans woman dogma used by social/religious conservatives to argue for the banning of medical support and their total social and legal elimination.

Jack's comment:

For those who do not know the autogynephilia debate, please note that this blog post is dripping with irony. The so-called "facts" presented by Blanchard & Co have all been debunked. The only thing we all agree on, is that transgender people may get excited by the idea of having sex as their target gender. How can they not?

For more on the autogynephilia debate, see:


For references, see:

(1) Blanchard, R. (1989). "The concept of autogynephilia and the typology of male gender dysphoria". The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 177 (10): 616–623.

32 comments:

Lisa Mullin said...

Jack, "The only thing we all agree on, is that transgender people may get excited by the idea of having sex as their target gender."

Yep.

I was a fairly typical trans kid. When I hit puberty what were my sexual fantasies about?

Hint: Not about being a big hairy bloke rogering a little blond woman...

Willow said...

A gross distortion. Instead of a rational and neutral position, the writer uses emotional tags and bends the words of Blanchard, Bailey, and Dreger to fit her predetermined conclusion.

Lisa Mullin said...

Willow this is biting sarcasm but everything there has been said by one or more of the AGP proponents.

Blanchard's original 1989 paper really used circular logic.... The statistical test he used was invalid, the sample was extremely questionable.

Remote diagnosis is endemic by them, totally unprofessional. I mean do they remotely diagnose people as being paedophiles or being schizophrenic? Nope. So how can they do it for AGP? 'Science ' or vilification?

Kay Brown a close associate actually recommends that parents tell their 12 year old trans kid they are really AGP perverts if they are not stereotypically 'girly'. Hope they give them the number to the suicide line as well....

Your friend Michael Bailey actually said that 'homosexual transsexuals' (identifying them as men) were 'well suited to prostitution'.

All of them have written foe ages about 'straight, gay or lying' that all bisexual men were really gay. BUT bisexual trans women are all really 'straight'...WTF?
Coincidentally if you (as I have) combine the 'homosexual transsexuals' with the 'bisexual transsexuals' ...their AGP score is nearly identical to the 'heterosexual transsexuals' ...funny that.

That couldn't be a motive of course.

Amazingly many of Blanchard's 'homosexual transsexual' sample had sex with women ..so why weren't they classified as 'bisexual and hence AGP?

Another of the group, 'Mr Reparative Therapy, Drop the Barbies' himself Zucker combines 'Homosexuals' and 'bisexuals' together in his work ... so who is right? Or, wicked thought, do they just pick and choose when it suits them?

None of them believe in gender identity ..which is ridiculous as they endlessly classify people as 'male' and 'female' and I am sure Michael thinks of himself as a man (then again who knows?) Does he have no gender identity? If not then I will call him Michelle from now on as it doesn't make any difference, as all that matters is his claim to be sexually attracted to women.

The whole thing is ridiculous but very damaging. Blanchard, Bailey, Zucker, et al are the darlings of the religious right wing and TERFs who are dedicated to eliminating us.

I am still waiting for ANY of them to disavow their work being quoted by hate organisations like the FRC. Still waiting. Still waiting.

So 'brave scientists fighting against political correctness and those horrible trans activists' or transphobes dedicated to our destruction?

Emma Sweet said...

I've said it before but I'll say it again: my crossdreaming and transgender nature emerged before I was 5 or 6 years old - LONG before I was even aware or conscious of sexual attractions or, for that matter, that there was much at all different in male and female bodies. It just didn't occur to me. As others have written, it was like I just wanted to be on the Girls' Team.

But as Lisa implied above, in puberty and sure, earlier (and later), my fantasies were all around being feminine. Who could blame me? I was so fixated on what it might mean to be and feel female, it's what I wanted. I still do. It's always been with me.

But as I've gotten older, as the sexual impulses wane a bit, I have a perspective and understanding that indeed an important part of my core is a wish that I was born female. And I think that's okay. It is what it is. Get used to it.

Jack Molay said...

//A gross distortion. Instead of a rational and neutral position, the writer uses emotional tags and bends the words of Blanchard, Bailey, and Dreger to fit her predetermined conclusion.//

Hmmm, well, I believe both Lisa and I have been very careful, at many occasions to take part in a rational discourse on this type of typology. You will definitely find a lot of that in this blog.

But being human is more than being some kind of emotionally restrained scientist. To be human is to fight for your right to live your life as you were meant to do. To be human is to stand up to your oppressors and call out those that persecute those who find it hard to defend themselves.

The autogynephilia theory is more of a cultural or a political expression of a specific type of Western bigotry than proper science (in the same way the eugenics tradition was an expression of racism). When you face that kind of evil, you do not restrict yourself to writing scholarly articles.

Sure, Blanchard and his followers try to hide their bigotry behind a facade of scientific jargon, but that does not change what it is: A violent and unfounded attack against very vulnerable people.

I fear to think about how many transgender people have killed themselves because of Blanchard and his followers, and how many who have wasted their lives trying to live up to the norms of a transphobic society. Now of course, religious conservatives and reactionary TERFs use the theory for all it is worth in order to destroy the lives of transgender people. That is why those of us who have seen through this charade will continue to reveal the true nature of this nonsense.

Willow said...

I beg to differ. I have known Ray Blanchard for over a decade. Ditto for Maxine Petersen, Mike Bailey, and Anne Lawrence - two of whom are trans. Alice Dreger has done wonderful work for the intersexed over years and years. I met Colette Chilland later. None of them are bigoted as some frequently allege. Indeed they have tried hard for most of their lives to assist transsexuals. Ray fought theOntrio government for years to improve transcare with Maxine at his side. They convinced each provincial government to allow us to change our birth certificates decades ago. Mike provided letters to those wanting surgery who could not otherwise obtain them; Collette likewise advanced transcare in France. In this emotion over facts world, it is fashionable to denigrate science, to make up facts to suit your prejudices. "How many killed themselves due to Blanchard? None. You blame them for a transphobic society- total nonsense. It is like a herd of lemmings following the cliff - all following the so-called activist acolytes of James, McClosey, and Conway. Frankly, I continue to be disgusted at the attacks on my friends, most of whom have now retired. The lot of you remind me of Donald Trump - making up "facts" to suit and braying like sick cows constantly to reinforce each other as the theories advanced do not agree with your emotions.

Lisa Mullin said...

How the right wing dedicated to the elimination of trans people use Blanchard/Zucker/Bailey/Dreger/Lawrence, etc work to attack us:

The National Catholic Bioethics Center 2009
The Psychopathology of “Sex Reassignment” Surgery
Position: “If SRS is neither medically nor ethically justifiable for adults, then starting hormone treatments on adolescents with GID in order to suppress puberty, with the promise of later proceeding to SRS, is even less so.”

Quotes/references: Blanchard: 11 times, Zucker: 19 times, Bailey: 10 times, Raymond 6 times, Lawrence: 21 times. McHugh 13 times. Autogynephilia: 32 times.


FAMILY RESEARCH COUNCIL (FRC) 2015
Understanding and Responding to the Transgender Movement
Position: "We believe that governments should not recognize any change in sexual identity from that
identified at birth (with the exception of the rare cases in which a biological disorder of sexual development can be diagnosed), and the law should not force any private entities to grant such recognition."

Quotes/references:" Ray Blanchard is mentioned and referenced twice, Zucker 10 times, Bailey twice, Dreger twice, Lawrence 3 times, Janice Raymond 7 times. McHugh 11 times. Autogynephilia 6 times.

If Blanchard's (et al) work was as neutral, understanding and scientific as is claimed by some, then how can those hate groups use it to attack us?

It shouldn't be possible. I mean none of them use Julia Serano's work, or WPATH's, or Kelley Winters', Moser or all the rest's work to argue for our elimination.
Therefore they see it as derogatory and they see it as a useful tool to stigmatise us.

The thing is they argue that the logical outcome of Blanchard's ideology is NOT allowing transition. Why should society help people follow their sexual fantasies? Why should society allow 'feminine' gay men to deceptively con straight men into having sex with them, why should it allow sexual paraphiliacs to get their rocks off? There are many other important things to be done in society, so why allow a small group of sex addicts and perverts any traction?

That is the question that people like Willow cannot answer.

Plus I and others have looked for any of the Toronto crowd objecting to or refuting the use of their work by people like the FRC. We have found nothing. I have personally asked Michael Bailey and James Cantor to do so...they never have.
Tacit support is still support.

Why does Ray Blanchard continually link to anti-trans and TERF sites all the time? One he links endlessly to argues that trans kids do not exist and that transition should not be allowed until you are 25. I have never seen a comment by him disagreeing....

Lisa Mullin said...

Blanchard's time as head of the CAMH (Zucker was his successor) was infamous for the few people he let through for HRT and surgery. Jurrasic Clark as it was called then.

Does Blanchard (et al) disagree with Kay Brown recommending that parents tell their 12 year old trans kid they are really AGP perverts if they are not stereotypically 'girly' or (shudder) are attracted to girls?
They have had a lot of time to say such things. To correct such ‘misconceptions’ …unless they are not really ‘misconceptions’ of course, That Brown, FRC, Catholic Church, TERFs and all the rest have the interpretation right?

Then there are the actual ‘science’ behind it. It is all based in Blanchard’s 1989 paper which is full of errors. Not just one minor error, there are sampling errors, questionnaire errors, logic errors, technical statistical errors, even grouping errors (why does Blanchard group bisexuals and straights together, when Zucker doesn't, who is right?).
How it got to publication I simply do not know. I would have got a fail putting something like that up as an –undergraduate- at university.
Yet it is the basis for the whole ideology.

Why did they define Gender Identity Disorder as being (really all) gender non conforming behaviour? Thus sweeping up a lot of non-trans people (especially kids) and throwing them into the 'reparative therapy' factory. Was it, as some thought, a closeted way to try and stop homosexuality as well as transsexuality? Or were they just trying to force gender conforming behaviour on everyone?

What was the point of the 5 y.o kid, GNC but NOT with gender dysphopria (and hence not trans) getting 104 sessions to 'cure' them, including toy changes, friend changes and all the rest. What was so wrong with their GNC behaviour that the kid was subjected to years of 'therapy' to 'cure' them?

Then Blanchard’s comments that he thinks homosexuality is a sexual paraphilia and should be in the DSM and should never have been taken out of it.

You connect all the dots and it paints an ugly picture.

Willow said...

Ah yes, Lisa, and what is known today was ALWAYS known. You would do just as well to defame Benjamin for it was his primary and secondary classifications that really DID take the life of my internet friend. You might add almost all of the professionals that attempted to discover why were are the way we are, before you were born. And new or current does not necessarily mean correct. Oh yes, I am still waiting for someone to give the names and dates of all those who were "killed" by Blanchard. And, by the way, I think Ken Zucker also tried his best within the scope of science as it was and perhaps still is. What you advance, and indeed what Blanchard advanced, are theories for in truth there is little known now that can be said to be proven. The waters are deep and murky.
Blanchard actually opened doors for many. His theory allowed those like me to qualify for SRS and later, to be truthful in pre-op sessions. Before that, "primaries" held sway. As to Kay Brown, I have also known her for some time as we met online shortly after Transkids was formed when James - with no evidence mind - determined that a computer fellow who set up their website was a pedophile, which he was not. Hurling insults with no evidence is so Trump-like. One final point. You allege without advancing proof that the Clarke "was infamous" for the few allowed to go on to SRS. That is most certainly not a fact and in all events during many years, if not decades, approvals were not issued on demand, as almost seems the case today. In fact, ALL the clinics were set up to say NO, to force you to fight for what you wanted in order to minimize mistakes.
I repeat that in my view, those who now blame Blanchard for everything from the death of Caesar to the War in Syria are using - in the main - are allowing their zealotry to allow rumours and populism to triumph.

Lisa Mullin said...

Willow "James - with no evidence mind - determined that a computer fellow who set up their website was a pedophile, which he was not. "

Yes ‘remote diagnosing’ is common with them. Take your friend Michael Bailey remote diagnosing Caitlyn Jenner http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton/2015/06/11/what-kind-of-woman-is-caitlyn-jenner-part-one-of-a-qa-on-autogynephilia-with-michael-bailey/

Without ever meeting them, without clinical sessionsmwothout any testing he diagnoses her as an 'autogynephiliac':
" I believe it is very likely that Caitlyn Jenner’s transition was motivated by intense autogynephilia. I believe this because the best science suggests there are two completely different reasons why natal males become women: because they are feminine androphiles (lovers of men) or because they are autogynephilic. Jenner’s history shows none of the former and is very consistent with the latter."

How does he know? What does he know about Jenner's sex life? For all he knows Jenner has been having sex with men for decades. Remote diagnosing by a magazine cover.

This is also speculation that ignores the many trans women who 'seem' to switch sexual orientation when they transition. Of course it is just that they are suppressing the attraction to males at the same time as they were suppressing their gender identity. Very common phenomena.

- Classic Michael quote (we are are all deluded) "some show memory distortion. They begin to assert that their gender dysphoria began in early childhood and was far more overt than they had alleged before."

So all my memories and the memories of others …are all wrong.

**** Does he mean AGP can distort the minds of other people too?

- Standard Bailey derogatory comment, again without any results for tests for gender identity "I think that Jenner’s brain has nothing more in common with the brain of a natal woman than mine does".
Has he seen the results of any such tests done on Caitlyn?
Has he done such test on himself and can we have the scores please to see how 'masculine' he is?

- 'Psueodo bisexuality': "A subset of autogynephilic males report that they are bisexual, but knowledgeable scientists think this is not true bisexuality. ".
" Rather than attraction to men’s bodies,.."
The same Bailey that says “bisexual men are all really gay men” ..well WTF one is it?

- How do they know? Done any tests, used the famous phallometer to check this out (pause to check his papers) ... nope. Pure speculation. As a bisexual trans women I can tell you I enjoy their bodies very much thank you. I know trans women he would remote diagnose' as AGP who go weak at the knees over a handsome man....

Bailey has written papers 'showing' that all bisexual men are really gay. But trans women, even pre transition living as men, are supposed to be all straight?

To see how absurd he is: pre me even coming out part time as a female (deep in the closet) I had sex with men as a man. Now Michael would classify me as a gay man then. Later on I came out as a trans woman, suddenly I am totally straight!

Lisa Mullin said...

- AGP, constantly changing: "Again, autogynephilia is like a sexual orientation, and that doesn’t change."
Oh so what is it then a 'sexual orientation', 'a paraphilia', 'self pair bonding', ’cross dressing’, ‘desire for a female body’? They keep adding these extra categories, definitions and explanations. If it is sexual orientation then, by definition it cannot be a paraphilia and should not be in the DSM.

This endless chopping and changing of the definition, earlier in the article he defines it as being the same as 'transvestic fetishism', but (even Blanchard admits this) that is supposed to be a very different condition, perhaps with some overlap as per the DSM.

- Bailey defined AGP in the article as 'erotic crossdressing', but AGP us supposed to about sexual fantasies of having a female body,

In the Core AGP test clothes only come up in 1 of the 8 questions…. (even then it is part of a combination question).

-The remote diagnosing never ends: " I can assure you (and Stewart): Caitlyn’s thrilled with that attention. It’s an autogynephilic fantasy."

- All trans Activists have AGP: "I worry when autogynephilic transsexual activists (this includes all who were born male who have not always been exclusively attracted to men) advise families of preadolescent gender dysphoric children. The older activists have completely distinct conditions from the children, and the activists’ experiences are not an accurate guide to what the youngsters feel or how they will turn "

According to him Jazz Jennings is obviously AGP because she is an activist.

How does he know? Many activists transitioned very young and are only male attracted. Getting married to a man after they transitioned as Lynn Conway did. Sure some might have had sex with a woman while in the closet, but many gay men have done that too ...does Michael argue they are not gay but paraphiliacs?

- Back to their absolutism "exclusively male attracted" throughout their entire life ...well that would eliminate a heck of a of gay men....
And back to the 'biseexual trans women are straight' meme again , contradicting his other work.

But this make no sense. AGP trans women are supposed to be paraphiliac straight men.
BUT all bisexual men are really gay men and NOT straight.

Therefore does this paraphilia 'cure' you of being gay? What a breakthrough for 'science'..... Irony obviously.

- But note the endless 'if you are female attracted at all then you are AGP' meme.
But Blanchard’s paper showed that (using their sexual activity test) that anything up to 40% of the so called 'homosexual transsexual' had sex with women.... So why weren't they classified as bisexuals and hence as straight?

- Transkids should not transition (same old, same old): "….it is at least questionable whether it is in preadolescent children’s interests to change sex, socially (because this may lead to persistence requiring serious medical treatment)."

- Obligatory rant against Lynn, Andrea and Deardrie: “As for fear, transgender activists (especially Lynn Conway, Andrea James, and Deirdre McCloskey) were so enraged by my writing about these ideas in my book that they tried to ruin my life.”

Lisa Mullin said...

- Total ignorance or something else?“I should mention one other therapeutic approach
***that has not been widely used, to my knowledge*****.
He was put on a course of leuprolide, a powerful drug that removes testosterone from the body. His desire to change sex virtually vanished. He’s happy and somehow able to have sex with his wife (viagra helps).”

Note every trans women on HRT gets very low testosterone, either naturally through estrogen or most commonly by taking a T blocker, it is a clinical goal as part of transitioning.

Therefore Michael’s point means:
(a) He is incompetent because he doesn’t know that, or (b) he knows that and is lying.



- Micheal has never changed in his vilification though, from his "particularly well suited for prostitution" comment in his book, through this article, to a recent exchange at the WPATH FB thread:
"Autogynephilia is a paraphilia, and some paraphilias are statistically associated. This may include in rare cases paraphilias (e.g., sadism) associated with more malevolent behavior.

It is neither prejudiced nor ignorant to hypothesize that autogynephilic natal males are at least a bit more likely than natal women to be sexually violent. I believe that there is evidence for this. "

" androphilic male-to-female transsexuals (or as Blanchard and I have called them “homosexual male-to-female transsexuals”) do not present a risk to women of sexual violence. I believe they are a relatively small minority of the current transgendered who would be affected by the various legislation, though.

(And I could imagine different “risks” with them, including their having sex with men in women’s rooms.)"

- That is downright vilification the equal of any transphobe or trans hate group. When I challenged him on providing some 'science' to prove this he retreated back into unconfirmed speculation.

I even presented the evidence that showed this was not the case, by statistics and statements by sexual assault experts and law enforcement bodies ...Like actual 'science', did he change his position? Nope.

-------------------------
So connecting the dots: 'scientist' or 'a transphobe abusing his academic position to vilify trans women'?

Jack Molay said...

// I have known Ray Blanchard for over a decade. Ditto for Maxine Petersen, Mike Bailey, and Anne Lawrence - two of whom are trans. Alice Dreger has done wonderful work for the intersexed over years and years. I met Colette Chilland later. None of them are bigoted as some frequently allege.//

Being trans does not necessarily stop you from being wrong, and having one or two friends of color does not necessarily stop a white person from being a racist.

Their kind of "help" does not help trans women at all, given that they at the same time tell the same trans women that they are not women at all, only perverted heterosexual men or hyperfeminine and hypersexualized gay men. Thank you, but no thank you.

Alice Dreger has done some excellent work on intersex people and I have read much of what she has written on this topic. She convincingly argues how a sexist medical establishment has desperately tried to erase the very existence of intersex kids through surgery and social conditioning. She has documented how this urge to invalidate the lives of these people are based on a need to protect the binary and traditional gender roles and identities. In short: She has shown an ability that Blanchard and Bailey clearly lack: She understand that science is influenced by the surrounding culture and that it can become a tool of oppression, rather than a tool for liberation.

For some strange reason, however, she refuses to see that the same applies to transgender people, and that her friends Blanchard and Bailey are doing the exact same thing to transgender people as other "experts" have done to intersex kids.

She understands the social forces that marginalize those that are different, but she still nevertheless defends people who do the same thing to a group that is not so close to her heart as the intersex community. What she is doing is in some ways even worse than what Blanchard and Bailey are doing. They have shown no understanding of social and cultural dynamics. She has.

Since then, of course, Dreger has also decided to make life harder for intersex people, by coming up with that horrible term "disorders of sex development". At the same time as we are finally beginning to depathologize homosexuality and transgender identities by removing the term "disorder", she is reintroducing it in the intersex arena.

I am sorry, I see nothing redeeming in what these people are doing. Nothing.

Emma Sweet said...

The New York Times posted an article a couple of days ago that I think speaks volumes about science winning vs. pseudoscience:

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/27/health/who-transgender-medical-disorder.html

Some quotes from it:

"Removing the mental health label from transgender identity would be a powerful signifier of acceptance, advocates and mental health professionals say."

"The issue is reminiscent of the change in the way homosexuality was treated in the American bible of psychiatric diagnoses, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, known as the D.S.M. In 1973, the book, published by the American Psychiatric Association, changed the diagnosis of “homosexuality” to “sexual orientation disturbance,” and later to “ego-dystonic homosexuality” before dropping it altogether in 1987."

I think that, like homosexuality, we have learned that transgender is simply another aspect of being human, normal in its own right. Indeed, it's high time that we wake up to that fact. I'm grateful that the tide seems to be changing and I get to witness it.

Jack Molay said...

Very good point!

The removal of homosexuality as a mental illness in the American Psychiatric Manual was not primarily a result of developments withing psychiatry, but of cultural change and very clever political maneuvering by the LGBT movement.

As the old generation of "experts" was replaced by younger ones raised with feminism, sexual liberation and a more visible gay and lesbian people, it became increasingly clear for the medical establishment that the LGBT activists had been right all along: Their suffering had been caused by an unforgiving society helped by bigoted science; their sexual orientation was not a mental illness in itself.

In other words: Social activism changed psychiatry. That does not mean that the current understanding has no basis in sound science. It does. It simply means that scientists, like the rest of us, are strongly influenced by their upbringing and their cultural biases. This stops them from asking pertinent questions, impels them to ignore findings that go against their beliefs, and also causes the arrogance that makes them -- in some cases -- commit crimes against marginalized people.

Jack Molay said...

// "How many killed themselves due to Blanchard? None. You blame them for a transphobic society- total nonsense.//

Around 40 percent of trangender people try to commit suicide. Research clearly shows that an important cause for this is stigmatization, harassment and social exclusion. This oppression causes a lot of transgender people to deny their own identity, which again makes the gender dysphoria even more intense.

The most effective tools used by the oppressors (which includes family, "friends", colleagues and peers) is to present the transgender person as some kind of deviant, failure or misfit. Since the late 19th century, the most efficient weapon has been to present them as sexual perverts.

In the same way homosexual men once were labelled as hypersexual pedophiles, MTF transgender people has been marked as transvestic fetishists or efeminate gay men.

To say that Blanchard is not part of this tradition is extremely naive. At the very moment that Freudian ideas about fetishistic imprinting lost its influence, Blancahrd repackaged transvestism as the even more toxic "autogynephilia".

For research on the effects this theory has had on transgender lives, I suggest you take a look at Jaimie Veal's research.

I have now lost track the number of MTF crossdreamers I have been in touch with who have talked about taking their own lives due to shame, guilt and loneliness.

Until quite recently the only source of information they had as regards their crossdreaming fantasies was the material provided by Blanchard and supporters, and many tell me that the theory forced them deeper into the closet and even more desperate attempts at living up to the role of the perfect man. They would not end their lives as the "creepy old pervert" and sat their lives on hold - indefinitely.

We don't know how many they are, since so many of them are not included in the transgender statistics. Many of them never seeked help from the medical establishment. Many of them never told anyone about their real struggles, and their suicides were explained as the result of something else.

I am glad to say that this is changing. There is still a tremendous amount of suffering, but MTF crossdreamers are more likely to seek help from the medical establishment. There is also a lot of information online that helps them get around the autogynephilia narrative, and the shame that way of thinking has caused them.

Unfortunately we have lost more than 20 years to this nonsense, including many lives. And a lot of transgender people who could have lived better lives as their true gender, lost that opportunity.

Jack Molay said...

This post is also discussed over at Reddit.

Willow said...

Back before Blanchard TS had the highest rate of suicide among defined groups. Thatitcontiued after Blanchard's concepts were widely known is no surprise. if that is your proof that Blanchard "killed" all those who committed suicide, it is no proof at all. just a wishful connection of random facts - and a rather silly one at that. There were and remain many reasons for trans suicides, one of which is failure to get the required approvals, but undoubtedly societal and family approval rank high on the list. So too do mistakes, as in having SRS and then finding you want to return to what you were. Add financial problems and more "normal" causes of suicide. You have no idea why those who did commit suicide did so; assuming all related to Blanchard is ridiculous.

Willow said...

Clearly Mike was expressing an opinion based on his knowledge. Look at the large number of professionals who have expressed opinions about the mental status of Donald J. Trump. The various opinions of pros and more who have also appraised Jenner. Hardly a matter of great import.

Anonymous said...

The statements of Blanchard, Bailey and Lawrence are freely available on the internet for all to purview. Whatever good deeds they have done, it is still the entirety of their actions and statements that present their character.

Blanchard did in fact make a variety of off-color statements about transsexuals (cf. "men without penises") and defend the "homosexual/nonhomosexual" nomenclature. Bailey did write an unfortunate degree of stereotyping and sexualised comments into his book. And Lawrence did insinuate that transsexuals fitting the autogynephilic stereotype were narcissistic, dishonest and even deluded.

Campaigning for access to transition care and legal gender change does not negate these facts. Certainly Blanchard's typology and its supporters have not caused trans people to commit suicide; that's honestly a bit ridiculous. But it certainly hasn't helped, and the popularity of the theory with individuals and groups who are adverse to trans people is also a fact. It being better than the theories of the 1960s or earlier is not saying much for it.

Willow said...

Unless you are referring to another article, I believe Anne Lawrence did a study of Narcissistic behaviour in certain transsexuals such as a certain JU in SF and others. Comorbidity if you will. Bailey's book? - get over it. It was published in 2003. As for Blanchard, he dealt with the tools and science available to him and retired almost a decade ago. asI recall, most of the articles date back to the 70s, 80sm, and a few in the 90s. Again, get over it. And, to be sure, many of the professionals that I am in contact with agree with him - that there are two types of transsexuals, the early ones (primaries) and later evolving ones like McCloskey (secondaries by old nomenclature). I agree with that, and there may be more. As Kay Brown points out often, there is a considerable difference between the two - and there may be more. A comparison of the life stories shows that clearly.

Lisa Mullin said...

Willow no reputable psych bodies (APA, UK bodies, WPATH and all the rest) accept Blanchard's ideology. None.
The only ones who do are the SPLC designated hate groups (FRC, ACPeds, etc) and the religious/conservatives people and organisations (eg Catholic Church).

That fact alone tells you something.

There are not and never have been 'two types', there is such a complex spectrum of trans people. These 'absolutes' have no meaning in the real world.

Being 'early' or 'late' only means some hide in the closet for awhile, like I did. Or struggle with internal transphobia maybe because of a religious/conservative upbringing that takes them time to work through.

- Notice no one, not even them, argue that there are two types of gay men or lesbians, 'early' or 'late' and that 'late gay men/lesbians' are really sexual pataphiliacs.
A 'late gay man is understood to have been in the closet and was only 'late' in coming out, not 'late' in developing their sexual orientation.

It is the same with trans people, their gender identity develops young ..for all of them (vast majority 4-16), but the environment and upbringing will determine whether they come out in their childhood, adolescence, 20s, 30s or later.
Note trans boys typically come out older than trans girls...does that means more of them are perverts than trans girls?

- The obtuse (deliberate?) belief that your trans gender identity is defined when you 'come out' and not when you actually feel it, is such total nonsense. As I said, please apply that same 'logic' to LGB people and tell them they are 'deluded' about their early feelings and see how far you get....

And what do you mean by 'late', according to them it is the start of puberty..... a touch restrictive.
BTW, by their logic you can be a textbook trans kid, the girliest girl around, then become female attracted at puberty ...instantly classified as AGP

The New Zealand Survey of school kids showed that 25% of trans kids knew they are transgender by 8 years of age, 41% are by 11 and nearly all by 18, though only a third had come out publicly at school.
Not everyone works it out straight away, some have to deal with religious beliefs, or internal prejudice or has the environment where they can come out. Some take time, some have to wait until they can get somewhere more accepting*.

As for sexuality 41% to 55% of trans kids were not same sex attracted (inc bisexuals) relative to their birth sex (NZ study) . The Tavistok centre for trans kids in the UK show that 30% of trans boys (FTM) were not same sex attracted and 50% of trans girls.
So trans kids/adolescent and adults show a diversity of sexual orientation...as everyone except Blanchard (et al) accepts, who only accept 'pooftahs and perverts'..

These are real facts on the ground not a pseudo-scientific ideology that twists and distorts everything and ignores real data because trans people are 'deluded'.

This also total contradicts Kay Brown with her trans definitions ..though she claims to one of the special snowflakes, by any of the standard definitions she is textbook AGP.
But she argues (it is there on her website) that if you have a trans kid, comes out about puberty , is not more sterotypically 'feminine' than 99% of cis girls (and has to be boy mad)...that the parents should sit down and tell them they are sexual perverts and always will be....at adolescence . Why not just put a bullet through their head.

But that is a common theme amongst 'true transsexuals' ..their dislike of trans kids. To be fair on Brown she accepts that 1% (though maybe as high as 3%) of trans kids are genuine, the rest are AGP perverts and should be treated as such.
Most 'TTs' don't accept any trans kids at all, support reparative therapy and the ending of childhood/adolescent transition....just like TERFs.

Lisa Mullin said...

The term 'narcissistic' is very much in the eye of the beholder, a common slur used against trans people. In reality you could define anyone as that...such as Lawrence herself, or ......

This is just piling on more and more derogatory slurs, like Baileys recent 'more likely to be sexually violent', 'have sex in women's toilets' and all the rest. Perverts, sexually violent, masochists, narcissistic, fetishists, sex mad prostitutes, shoplifters....the list goes sadly on and on.

I can get less insults on a TERF site than from the Blanchard Bunch.

As for "the tools and science available to him", well in his definitive 1989 paper he used the Newman-Keuls test, which is invalid for varying sample sizes. There are other tests that work fine with varying sample sizes so why didn't he use one of them?
I was using such tests in the 1970s......
He decided to average the sample sizes using the harmonic mean, normally only used in certain types of financial analysis, why not another mean?
Totally technically invalid.

So I ask again, 'science' or 'transphobic vilification'?

* As one young trans women said to me recently 'I -desisted- until I was no longer financially dependent on my parents so I would have roof over my head'. Instant AGP classification by them of course.

Lisa Mullin said...

The obvious question has to be asked Willow, since you believe in the Blanchard ideology. what one are you:

(1) An effeminate gay man who ONLY transitioned to have lots of sex with lots of straight men, because 'masculine' gay men reject them (if that hadn't happened they would not have transitioned).
Or
(b) A Sexual Paraphiliac, in lust and love with a fantasy about them self.


Plus to be (a) You also have had to have been sterotypically 'feminine' (more than most cis girls) as child with no male interests whatsoever and came out to your parents between about 4-9, plus NEVER had or wanted to have sex with a woman.
Plus as an adolescent you were boy mad and only interested in fashion and girly activities.
If any of these are not true then you are AGP, even if you have been exclusively male attracted all the time (a pseudo-homosexual).

Which one are you?

Remember they do not accept the concept of gender identity, or that any trans women has a female identity, or any trans man a male identity. Only sexual drives.
The ONLY motivation for transitioning and living as the opposite gender is sexual.
So you are still a man.

Lisa Mullin said...

Jack: "It simply means that scientists, like the rest of us, are strongly influenced by their upbringing and their cultural biases."

Perfectly correct.

Blanchard, in his retirement showed his Catholic bias when he stated that he thought all sexual activities not directly related to procreation should be classified as a paraphilia. That is the Catholic position (note the similarities with the eugenics ideology some of them follow as well).

In the DSM (under the paraphilia section) they had to modify it (to not be hammered by the gay and lesbian organisations) as 'copulatory sex between two consenting adults'....but everyone knows what they really meant.

Under that model masturbation is a paraphilia, sex using contraception is a paraphilia, homosexuality of course....
If you are a male 'not bonking for babies' you are a pervert.

Showing his Catholic bias yet again, there is no mention of women's sexuality whatsoever, they don't have one, rather they are passive beings waiting for a male to arouse them to have sex to have babies (hence his position that women cannot have a sexual paraphilia, with no sex drive then a misdirected sex drive is impossible).

Many TERFs also have had Catholic backgrounds: Raymond (an ex-nun), Daly, Greer, Brennan, not sure about Jeffreys but I suspect so.

So they both view the world through a distorting lens, an artificial division of males and females into 1950s style 'masculinity' and 'femininity' behavioural roles, with a clear belief in the inferiority of women and 'femininity'. That 'men want sex and woman only want babies but tolerate sex to have them'. That is all classic Catholic teaching*.

As is common with people with such strong beliefs they 'goal seek' finding the 'facts' that will bolster their ideology ...true cognitive dissonance.

The classic example of that cognitive dissonance is their lumping of asexuals into the 'sexual pervert' AGP group.
WTF? That is an oxymoron an 'asexual paraphiliac'.
They explain this in a classic bit of circular logic: 'asexuality causes AGP, asexuality is caused by AGP'....

Right, we are now into theology rather than science.

So their cognitive biases come from their early backgrounds and they lack the introspection and internal intellectual ability to overcome them (as many do).


*I will be writing more on this later. There is a wonderful paper by a female senior Catholic theologian that compares the TERF version of radical feminism and the Catholic Church's positions and found 9 points of convergence in their ideologies ... One was obviously about trans people.

Jack Molay said...


I am looking forward to reading your ideas on the connection between theology and sexology.

It is fascinating to see how some "evolutionary psychologists" so easily become reductionists when looking at human sexuality. Although they know better, they tend to focus on the procreation of the individual ("evolutionary fitness"), instead of the survival of the group.

It is this that makes variations in gender identity and sexuality "sins" or "paraphilias".

The fact this that contemporary research (and common sense) tells us that procreation is only one of many "functions" of sexual behavior, some of the others being:

Pair bonding
Achievement of social status
Comfort and emotional release (improving health)
Development of social and cultural roles
Development of identity

I have been told that the average person has sex 127 times a year. Lets say he or she is sexually active for 50 years: that gives us 6350 intercourses in a life time. The average number of kids is under 2 in the Western world. The main function of sex is definitely not procreation.

This is not unique to the human species. The bonobos use sex to solve social conflicts. It is a pleasurable alternative to fighting and killing. Everyone has sex with everyone, regardless of sex or age. This leads to the survival of the members of the tribe and makes them all more likely to procreate.

Lisa Mullin said...

Jack.

We carry a lot of shame, guilt and other things like internalised homophobia as well.

When I had sexual fantasies as kid and later, I'd imagine myself as a women but if they strayed (as they did) into having sex with a man ...then I'd stop them, because I'd feel so guilty about it.

Took me a heck of long time (and I mean long) to come to terms with being bisexual and though primarily female attracted, that I like guys too. In fact I came to terms with being transgender much earlier than I came to terms with being male attracted, which just shows you the power of such things.

So I always tried to 'police' my fantasies and keep them in 'safe' areas. I was already carrying enough guilt and shame about fantasising being a women, I didn't need the extra guilt of fantasising about having sex with a man as well.

Doubting that I am particularly unusual I suspect that happens to a lot of others too. You limit your fantasies. For me only allowing myself ones about having sex with a women, as a woman, was' safer'. But I can understand others who police and limit theirs to just being a woman on their own. That is 'safe' and you avoid other complex, even threatening issues.

Oh the things I used to do to try to 'cure' myself and avoid issues...pathetic.

This is dead true. I used to get aroused when masturbating, as a teenager and young adult, thinking about being a woman having sex, but when I orgasmed I switched, at the last moment, to thinking about PiV sex with a woman, trying to 'condition' myself.. Yep I had read too much Skinner....

Oh the guilt and shame I carried back then. I was petrified anyone would work it out and suspect me (and I think some did in my 20s), so I developed an 'alpha male' act from about 30 onwards to hide it even more. Built myself an even bigger closet.

Jack Molay said...

This sounds familiar.

When I finally decided to face my transgender nature some 10 years ago, I decided to do so in two ways:

1. The brainy way -- given that I am very much an intellectual. That led to this blog.

2. The fantasy way -- writing down my sexual fantasies, regardless of how embarrassing and taboo they were. In this respect reading TG erotica helped me a lot, because there are a lot of crossdreamers who explore their identity -- consciously or subconsciously -- by writing stories, captions and comics.

I would not say that going down the fantasy road solved my problems, but it most certainly helped me get in touch with my other side, and it also helped me grasp what this is all about in a much more constructive manner.

As you point out guilt and shame even cause us to police our fantasies, and this embarrassment most definitely keep many of us in the closet.

This is one of the arguments that is missing from the autogynephilia discussion: By labelling crossdreaming as a paraphilia, the theory effectively stops transgender people from coming out to themselves and to others. It forces them to suppress their true nature, and you and I know from experience how destructive that is.

Lisa Mullin said...

Jack, oh yes.

The sex drive in incredibly powerful and if you have spent ages building up denial and 'mental walls' to handle your dysphoria it is one of the few things that can punch through them.

You've got your coping/suppressing./denying/etc psychological and behavioural mechanisms well developed. You're coping, you're not happy of course but you survive.
And then niggling sexual fantasies burst through it all.... "hey your gender desires have not gone away, I'm still here". Of course, as in my case, that can make it worse..... So you go further into the closet ...and yet they still come through.

I have lots of fantasies most non-sexual. In my 20s I used to suffer horrible insomnia so I learned a trick (from a book I read, forgot what it was). I created totally non-sexual fantasies, whole stories like a private TV series that I'd think before sleeping. They involved all sort of things, some stories went on for many months from episode to episode, starship captain and all the rest. Worked too, cured my insomnia.

But a big change came when I finally stopped 'policing' them and my character(s) always became female after that and that was a big step forward towards accepting myself.

So it is not just sexual fantasies where your gender desires pop up, they are constantly 'pushing' at your carefully crafted 'coping' mechanisms. Even something mundane as you see a women in the street and you think 'I wish I could be like her', feel jealousy and you have a little daydream about being like her. Then you catch yourself and concentrate on what you were doing in the first place.

One criteria for being transgender is ‘insistent’, ‘persistent’ and ‘consistent’. And you can build the best psychological ‘coping (etc)’ mechanisms in the world and it will still pop up one way or another.


The textbook classic is the person deep in the closet, gender thoughts pop up now and then to be slapped down real fast as the person thinks of their relationship, family, friends, career and all the rest...then get turned on by a 'forced feminisation' fantasy. To be 'forced' into doing something they really want in the first place.
That avoids the guilt they feel, not just about gender but also about long suppressed sexual desires as well. Classic.

Note that is also a common fantasy for many cis women as well, being 'forced' to do something sexually that they would never normally do, as many suffer from sexual and behavioural suppression.

So we play all these mental games with ourselves, slap gender feelings down in one area, they pop up somewhere else.

Sacha Traviata said...
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Sacha Traviata said...
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Sacha Traviata said...

Colette chiland is DEAD and was hate by many trans in France !

Her vision of the trans problem = sexual surgery is a crazy reply to a crazy claim.

http://yagg.com/2016/09/28/deces-de-la-tres-controversee-colette-chiland-la-psychiatre-la-plus-transphobe-de-france/

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