Episode 44

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Published on:

8th Oct 2021

44 - Multiple Meanings of Gender Dysphoria: A Conversation with Aaron Terrell

Aaron Terrell transitioned female-to-male in 2011. He wasn’t involved in social media or the trans community until roughly 2017 when he noticed some unusual anomalies involving the new cohort of females identifying as trans men and undergoing medical transitioning. Then, earlier this year, Aaron read J. K. Rowling’s essay and everything changed.

Links:

Aaron’s blog: 

Aaronterrell.substack.com


Aaron on Twitter:

Twitter.com/elegationvain


Gender Dysphoria Alliance:

Twitter.com/gd_alliance?lang=en


Dysphoria is not one thing:

4thwavenow.com/2017/12/07/gender-dysphoria-is-not-one-thing


Transparency Podcast:

Podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/transparency/id1583333120

 

Unfiltered with Buck Angel (on UpperhandMARS):

Youtu.be/nqAJLHZCWv0

 

Extended Notes:

  • A little bit about Aaron and his journey.
  • Why did Aaron decide to transition at 27?
  • Aaron was introduced to a trans social circle when he was still in college, although it was nice to be with his tribe, certain topics made him uncomfortable.
  • Did family members recognize Aaron’s struggles when he was going through puberty as a woman?
  • Aaron shares his beliefs on religion, and what his religious upbringing was like.
  • People are making their lives much more difficult by trying to opt out and be different with their gender.
  • Why did Aaron start his blog and podcast?
  • Aaron was largely helped by transitioning, but he understands the drawbacks and often writes about those drawbacks.
  • Sasha reads an excerpt from his blog, and Aaron expands on his thoughts on the trans movement at the time.
  • Aaron had a lot of internalized misogyny happening when he started to become a man.
  • He was supposed to be a wife and a mother, and when he transitioned, what was next? It was natural for Aaron to be a breadwinner, and adopt an identity of what that “traditionally” looks like.
  • When it comes to trans people using the male and female bathrooms, where does he stand on the issue? At first, he thought people who were offended by this were transphobes.
  • Where does the ethical line get drawn on some of these controversial issues?
  • With so many young children transitioning so early, what’s the fallout going to look like? Aaron believes there are going to be a lot of de-transitioners.
  • What is the Gender Dysphoria Alliance all about?


This podcast is partially sponsored by ReIME, Rethink Identity Medicine Ethics:

Rethinkime.org


Learn more about our show: Linktr.ee/WiderLensPod


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About the Podcast

Gender: A Wider Lens Podcast
Two therapists explore the expanding concept of "gender" from a psychological depth perspective.
Gender dysphoria has become a minefield for public discussion, with many afraid to express their views or question the narrative. Our mission is to examine this important and complex topic from a range of perspectives, but always through a psychological lens. By openly considering and examining gender identity, transition, and the transgender umbrella, we hope to give all interested parties permission to engage these fascinating topics with less fear and more honesty. Interviews and discussions will involve clinicians, medical professionals, academics, transgender people, parents, detransitioners and other interesting individuals whose lives have been touched by the concept of gender.

Conversations between two practicing therapists give listeners an opportunity to contemplate gender from a depth perspective not currently taken up in most of today’s accessible debates. As a result of their work with gender dysphoric therapy clients as well as their personal divergent experiences with gender, Stella and Sasha hold a refreshing and informed perspective.

Is gender identity a facilitation of development and expression of creativity, or can it be a defense against painful existential realities of living in a human body? What can we discover about masculinity, femininity, identity, gender performance, and sexuality when we peer beneath the surface and dive into a deeper psychological exploration? What is the relationship between body, mind, identity, culture, and psyche?

This podcast engages listeners in an intimate and fascinating behind-the-scenes inquiry about a topic as taboo as it is salient today.

* We are partially sponsored by ReIME, Rethink Identity Medicine Ethics. ReIME is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving long term care for gender variant individuals. To learn more, visit https://rethinkime.org/
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About your hosts

Stella O'Malley

Profile picture for Stella O'Malley
Stella O’Malley is a psychotherapist and author who works in private practice in Ireland. Her work focuses on parenting, family dynamics and working with teenagers.

Much of Stella’s counselling and writing focuses on mental health and the importance of well-being and she is a regular contributor to the media. She is also the resident psychotherapist for the current TV series, Raised by the Village, a family programme that helps troubled teenagers reconnect with themselves and their families.

Stella's first book, Cotton Wool Kids, was released in 2015 while Bully-Proof Kids: Practical tools to help kids grow up confident, resilient and strong was released in 2017. Stella’s latest book Fragile, was released in 2019 and focuses on overcoming anxiety and stress.

Stella was the presenter of the documentary Trans - Kids: It’s Time To Talk broadcast on Channel 4 in November 2018 and she contributed a chapter to the 2019 book, Inventing Transgender Children and Young People.

The Jungian analyst, Lisa Marchiano, and Stella launched Secrets of the Motherworld in September 2019, offering thoughtful exploration of the most intimate aspects of motherhood in a bid to help mothers feel less alone.

Stella is a Clinical Advisor for the Society for Evidence-based Gender Medicine and a founding member of the International Association of Therapists for Desisters and Detransitioners. She is also the lead facilitator for the Gender Dysphoria Support Network.

Stella holds a B.A. in Counselling and Psychotherapy and a M.A. in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.



Sasha Ayad

Profile picture for Sasha Ayad
Sasha Ayad is a Licensed Professional Counselor who works in private practice, and has treated adolescents for over 10 years. Her work focuses on teens and young adults struggling with issues of gender dysphoria and gender identity.

She became interested in the sharp rise in teenagers who declare a trans identity for the first time during adolescence. She discovered, through working with hundreds of families, that many teens were developing gender dysphoria only after adopting a transgender identity. She questions the practice of medical transition for children and teenagers, and her clinical work focuses on developmentally appropriate, least-invasive-first talk therapy.

Sasha is also a founding member and Clinical Advisor in the Society for Evidence-based Gender Medicine and a founding member of the International Association of Therapists for Desisters and Detransitioners.

Sasha’s previous work experience includes:
- School counselor for middle and high school students at a charter school for underserved communities

- Behavioral therapy with children on the autism spectrum

- Individual and group counseling for women and children impacted by domestic abuse and sexual violence

- Developed and ran the first counseling program at a large state supported living facility for adults with intellectual disability

Sasha holds a B.S. in Psychology and an M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology.