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      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   06/04/2017

      Depression, Mental Health and Crisis Support   Depression and other mental health difficulties are common amongst people on the autistic spectrum and their carers.   People who are affected by general mental health difficulties are encouraged to receive and share information, support and advice with other forum members, though it is important to point out that this exchange of information is generally based on personal experience and opinions, and is not a substitute for professional medical help.   There is a list of sources of mental health support here: <a href="http://www.asd-forum.org.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=18801" target="_blank">Mental Health Resources link</a>   People may experience a more serious crisis with their mental health and need urgent medical assistance and advice. However well intentioned, this is not an area of support that the forum can or should be attempting to offer and we would urge members who are feeling at risk of self-harm or suicide to contact either their own GP/health centre, or if out of hours contact NHS Direct on 0845 4647 or to call emergency services 999.   We want to reassure members that they have our full support in offering and seeking advice and information on general mental health issues. Members asking for information in order to help a person in their care are seeking to empower both themselves and those they represent, and we would naturally welcome any such dialogue on the forum.   However, any posts which are deemed to contain inference of personal intent to self-harm and/or suicide will be removed from the forum and that person will be contacted via the pm system with advice on where to seek appropriate help.   In addition to the post being removed, if a forum member is deemed to indicate an immediate risk to themselves, and are unable to be contacted via the pm system, the moderating team will take steps to ensure that person's safety. This may involve breaking previous confidentiality agreements and/or contacting the emergency services on that person's behalf.   Sometimes posts referring to self-harm do not indicate an immediate risk, but they may contain material which others find inappropriate or distressing. This type of post will also be removed from the public forum at the moderator's/administrator's discretion, considering the forum user base as a whole.   If any member receives a PM indicating an immediate risk and is not in a position (or does not want) to intervene, they should forward the PM to the moderating team, who will deal with the disclosure in accordance with the above guidelines.   We trust all members will appreciate the reasoning behind these guidelines, and our intention to urge any member struggling with suicidal feelings to seek and receive approproiate support from trained and experienced professional resources.   The forum guidelines have been updated to reflect the above.   Regards,   The mod/admin team
trekster

gender identity trans*

31 posts in this topic

This topic has been created for people to openly discuss their gender. Whether questioning your gender, supporting another person questioning their gender or consider yourself on the trans* spectrum all are welcome. All gender identities will be respected whether genderqueer, non-binary, male to female, female to male or a mixture of different genders. Please respect peoples right to privacy regarding their gender.

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It appears people are not comfortable discussing this topic I can understand that as it's something very personal.

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As a sexuality thread was offered it was only fair to offer a trans thread as well because the t is often missed out in lgbt discussions.

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I totally agree and wasn't saying anything in any way that it should be. I was just making a comment on the lack of posts sorry if I appeared to be critical that wasn't my intention.

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The mental image we provide ourselves can vary a lot.

 

I am male quite obviously, yet female. aggressive, rip your head off. The perfect Tom Cat.

 

Ian

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I think that's within us all all at times irrespective of who or what we are

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Transgender is when you are born with female body parts or male body parts but feel your gender doesn't match those body parts 100% of the time. So someone can feel they have no gender or a mixture of genders (both known as non binary or genderqueer) of the opposite gender to what their body parts tell them, male to female (for those born with male body parts) or female to male (for those born with female body parts). This causes mental distress to the affected person.

 

Male to female transgender folk would prefer to do what they considered female or neutral activities. Driving for example would not cause distress with their gender (unless they were labelled something involving their incorrect gender "stupid women driver" or "typical boy racer" for example) as it's considered a gender neutral activity. Wearing make up, dresses, skirts, painting fingernails, going on hen parties, going to female only clubs, could be possible activities for male to female transgender folk.

 

Female to male transgender folk would prefer to do what they considered male or neutral activities. Playing football, boxing, going on stag do's, going to male only clubs could be possible activities for female to male transgender folk.

 

There are transgender folk who dont really engage in typical male or typical female activities. But they have distress in other aspects of their lives, some trangender folk can manage with a name change and dressing permanently in their true gender. But others need hormones and surgery in order to feel 'comfortable in their own skin'. Even having a wee can set off distress in transgender folk.

 

Ally

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My response could technically be in either section, I am male and attracted to women but I see myself as quite feminine and like the idea of being a woman so I can have smooth skin, long hair and be able to be glam, and be asked out by the opposite sex, and it is a little strange but I wonder what pregnancy and childbirth and having periods is like.

 

I basically wish I can be a man one minute or a woman the next, probably a man in my leisuire time as I like more things associated with men such as certain video games and movies but a woman in public and when relaxing.

 

Its a strange thing though.

 

The only other thing is sexual related, I cannot ever perform sexually as a man as I am in a situation where as I have only ever under 6 times in my life been in a state of complete relaxation I dont know how to activate it for lack of better words so being a man in that sense is useless.

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Sexuality is very different to gender, there are straight trans folk, bi trans folk and gay trans folk.

 

Thank you for sharing your experiences. If you wished to get help further look up "gender identity clinics" or "gender identity disorder" on NHS choices.

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Atypical gender identities are a lot more common in people on the autistic spectrum than in neurotypical people. So also are asexuality, hypersexuality and object sexuality. As you say, gender identity and sexuality are unconnected, but they are both largely genetically determined. The common factor is autism. It genetically predisposes us so that we are more likely to be 'different' in these ways - as well as in many other ways.

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I love transgender people. There is nothing wrong with this. I've never told my family I don't care if a guy believes he should have been born a girl. They are not homophobic as such but I don't think my parents have much positive things to say about gay people. The word P-O-O-F or tranny is very nasty.

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Gold MD thanks for your support for transgender people. However homophobia and transphobia are very different things.

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Atypical gender identities are a lot more common in people on the autistic spectrum than in neurotypical people. So also are asexuality, hypersexuality and object sexuality. As you say, gender identity and sexuality are unconnected, but they are both largely genetically determined. The common factor is autism. It genetically predisposes us so that we are more likely to be 'different' in these ways - as well as in many other ways.

Excellent point there autism is the common factor with gender and sexuality.

 

I'm wondering if agender people are commonly on the autism spectrum?

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Gender dysphoria is 6-7 times more likely for those on autistic spectrum, than in the neurotypical population - highly significant. Many people on the spectrum see themselves as androgynous. This is an area needing much more research. My own research suggests that certain genes associated with autism predispose us towards gender dysphoria/androgyny. The trigger for this would be a hormone imbalance during a critical period of pregnancy. Similarly, such imbalances can also cause physical intersex conditions - the now banned drug diethylstilbesterol (DES) being the most notorious example.

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I wonder why it is higher on the autistic spectrum.

 

This subject has been bothering me for a few weeks now. I was born female. I've never felt female and would always describe myself as a tom boy. But I never really though of myself as male either. However my interests, personality, what few friends I've had, everything is distinctly male. Mum is always telling me off for buying boys t-shirts. And I hate with a real passion being treated as a girl. I've always wanted to be flat chested and I am so ashamed of, you know, that if I am changing in a changing room, I'll go into the toilets to change my top. And before I stopped wearing swimming costumes altogether, I would cover my chest with my arms. I also can't even talk about the other female stuff by name. It disgusts me. But until a few weeks ago that was it.

Then one of my support workers asked me outright. Not in a nasty way. But she thinks I might be and I might be happier if I went down that route.

 

Now I'm really confused. I don't know what to do. I don't know who or what I am or how I would deal with it in reality.

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Got to your gp and ask to be referred to a gender identity clinic. Tell your gp all the things you have mentioned here.

 

There is also ungendered (agender) and a mixture of genders as a posibility. Gender services in England are now funded in a way that a direct referal to your gender identity clinic is the right route.

 

Www.gires.org.uk is an excellent website regarding gender resources for patients.

 

Hope this helps. Feel free to private message me if you have any other questions.

 

Ally

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Thanks for the link. That is very useful. I'll continue to have a read through that.

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Anytime that's what were here for.

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https://spectrumnews.org/news/new-clinical-guidelines-address-gender-dysphoria-autism/

 

As a result of some quite extensive research, guidance has been produced for professionals working in gender medicine and those working in diagnosing autism to refer to the other service where possible.

 

This is happening to patients from teenage

So anyone who presents as trans when being given an autism diagnosis will be assessed for possible gender dysphoria.

 

Patients going to the gender identity services will be tested for autism if they present that way.

 

There's a number of concerns.

 

1, that people would have to disclose their sexuality because that can be confused with gender as well.

 

2, that a rise in autistic patients going through gender identity services will mean they get treated with less understanding and compassion due to old school values regarding what autistics can and cannot do or consent for treatment.

 

3, services will be unable to cope because patients are waiting for an autism diagnosis and this can hold up treatment.

 

4, how will post diagnostic services work in regards to gender identity services?

 

5, services being overprotective because there's not enough money so letting the easier cases through first.

 

 

Yes it is good to recognise autism and or gender dysphoria at an earlier age but only if the services aren't held up due to a lack of understanding as a result.

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Thanks for posting this, Trekster. It's good to know that some initial guidelines have been developed. I read the article and followed the link to the first reference, but haven't found the actual guidelines. If anyone happens to have a direct link to the guidelines that would be of interest to me, and I guess others. I also note that this appears to be based in USA, not UK, though from what I can gather some gender clinics in the UK are doing some ASC screening.

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I did look for the same guidelines in the uk but couldn't find any. Although I found a newspaper article in the uk but this seems to have gone.

Edited by trekster

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Definitly bookmarking that recent link. The support worker that asked me previously has been worried that because of my autism that when I am ready to go down that route I wouldn't get through the assessments because of my communication difficulties.

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Can the support worker or another person who understands you go with you to the assessments?

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I've found being trans and ASD really hard. I've heard from enough trans people to know transitioning can be hard at the best of times. But when you really struggle to communicate with people and cope with society, it adds a whole extra layer of hard. I'm not out to anyone IRL, only online, and I can't see this changing any time soon, which really sucks.

 

I haven't really used this forum much since I joined five months back, but I saw this thread and that it was a little under used, so I thought I'd poke my head up and say hi. No idea if there any other trans people around here, or if its just me, but here I am.

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There is a conference every year called autscape which seems to have a gathering of 10+ autistic trans folk. Coming out is difficult for anyone both as autistic and as trans. Wenn Lawson has written some papers on autism and is out both as autistic and the as trans.

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Sorry about the slow reply trekster. I totally forgot to check back.

Yes my support worker would come with me. I already have them attend every medical appointment with me. But from my experience, not every medical person allows them to speak. Some refuse anything but me talking and don't allow them to help out.

 

Fade, that's a similar situation to me.

 

I keep on thinking about autscape. Maybe this is Year I do it.

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The ones that refuse to allow my support workers to speak for me when I've given permission in the room at the time I refuse to see again.

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I frequently hear 'I want to hear it from you', even though like you I had given permission.

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i am trans ftm and i didnt understand what i was until 30,after having years of being taught about gender differences between people by specialist teachers in my twenties, i came to a realisation that my whole life had been male-up until that realisation i saw male and female as the same thing, to me i see all humans as the same thanks to my unique mind and my visual perception, i was even outwardly male as a young toddler. so i came out as trans at 30 but no one wants to help me.

at my last care home,i was on the waiting list to see a gender identity clinic and the manager of that home at the time was extreme christian and was very against me being trans, she hid all the letters i recieved about the GIC and i got took off the waiting list.

in my new care facility,where i have a newer GP to,he refused outright to agree to suport a top operation [removal of boobs] and for testosterone because i have learning disability as well as moderate classic autism and also mental health issues [bipolar,psychosis,extreme anxiety],i was on the waiting list yet again-waiting a year,got sent a letter that was supposed to be filed in by staff as i couldnt understand it-nor can i write,it basicaly got put in a drawer in the office and never came out again so once again,i am taken off the waiting list and i am so fed up i want gender councilling,ive never had any councilling of any kind im a frigging mess.

no one will even help me legally change my name,support staff pass it on to the next staff on shift,then the next staff and so forth nothing gets sorted no one cares but to me being biologically female is a huge part of why i have mental health issues.

Edited by ProudAutie

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Welcome proudautie

Have you tried contacting your local NAS branch in Manchester regarding the lack of access for trans services? Im not sure if you access facebook? There is an account called 'scott grant' which if you add will allow TMSA to add you to their secret facebook group.

You can change your name legally by contacting an organisation that produces 'deed polls' or 'statutory declarations' all you need is one witness or two. Mencap or MIND might also be able to help you get the help you need.

"How can I best support somebody with a learning disability who is lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender (LGBT)? 

Some people with a learning disability are lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender (LGBT), or they might be questioning their sexual orientation or gender. You can best support them by talking to them about being LGBT, and reassuring them that it this is okay to be LGBT.

It is best practice for staff to be proactive in ensuring that the support and information they provide around sex and relationships is inclusive of LGBT people. In the provision of services there is a duty under the Equality Act 2010 to provide equality of opportunity to individuals with protected characteristics, including sexual orientation and gender reassignment.

There are resources available to help you support LGBT people with a learning disability:

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/guides-to-support-and-services/lgbtq-mental-health/#.WTslnuvyvIU

i have heard good things about MIND being LGBTQ friendly, in some areas there is a trans mindline

http://www.leedsandyorkpft.nhs.uk/our-services/gender-identity-service/ there is a telephone number on there, try ringing and explaining your situation to them. Ask them to help you fill in the forms, I have support workers help me fill in forms because my handwriting is poor. Explain to them you can't find anyone who is willing to help you fill in the forms.

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On 09/06/2017 at 11:54 PM, trekster said:

Welcome proudautie

Have you tried contacting your local NAS branch in Manchester regarding the lack of access for trans services? Im not sure if you access facebook? There is an account called 'scott grant' which if you add will allow TMSA to add you to their secret facebook group.

You can change your name legally by contacting an organisation that produces 'deed polls' or 'statutory declarations' all you need is one witness or two. Mencap or MIND might also be able to help you get the help you need.

"How can I best support somebody with a learning disability who is lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender (LGBT)? 

Some people with a learning disability are lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender (LGBT), or they might be questioning their sexual orientation or gender. You can best support them by talking to them about being LGBT, and reassuring them that it this is okay to be LGBT.

It is best practice for staff to be proactive in ensuring that the support and information they provide around sex and relationships is inclusive of LGBT people. In the provision of services there is a duty under the Equality Act 2010 to provide equality of opportunity to individuals with protected characteristics, including sexual orientation and gender reassignment.

There are resources available to help you support LGBT people with a learning disability:

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/guides-to-support-and-services/lgbtq-mental-health/#.WTslnuvyvIU

i have heard good things about MIND being LGBTQ friendly, in some areas there is a trans mindline

http://www.leedsandyorkpft.nhs.uk/our-services/gender-identity-service/ there is a telephone number on there, try ringing and explaining your situation to them. Ask them to help you fill in the forms, I have support workers help me fill in forms because my handwriting is poor. Explain to them you can't find anyone who is willing to help you fill in the forms.

trekster,you are awesome-thankyou! i will go through the information tonight as ive got to go sort out two bunnies,a 400l tank of fish and a naughty special needs support cat who needs medication syringing down him. thankyou again!

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