This may seem like a weird question but in essence it seemed to be implied by one person commenting on my last post. He/she asked (and I’ll use ‘he’for reasons that will become clear) if I was advocating hormones as a ‘diagnostic’. The quick answer is ” certainly not”.
I will argue that our sense of our gender comes not from the hormones coursing through our bodies, but from our innate sense of self. I quoted Holly Berry and wrote “I know I am transgender because I chose to assert this identity and this way of expressing myself” I knew I was transgender before taking hormones; I know that I am a woman because in my mind the label “woman” and its general connotations align nicely with who I have become (or at least who I try to be), and applying it to myself feels good. My sense of being a woman is deepened and confirmed as the time since committing to and living openly as a woman lengthens; as each day, week, month passes the more certain I am.
There is good reason for the Gender Clinics in the UK requiring evidence that their trans women patients are living outwardly as women, having changed their names on various official documents and being out to employers etc. A woman is somebody who lives as a woman, a man is somebody who lives as a man. By living as a woman I have come to know that I am a woman beyond doubt. I do not believe that any shrink can determine whether or not I am a woman. You may have come across website that ask the question ‘are you transgender’ and then tell you, ‘yes you are’. Such sites may seem flippant but cis folk just don’t ask.
Hormones don’t make one a woman.