i'm just trying to digest all this.
it makes sense to separate gender and sex. that is, a male can choose to identify as man or woman (or, perhaps - certain degrees of man-ness or woman-ness) and a female can also choose to identify as woman or man (again, to certain degrees).
a male (or female) choosing to identify as anything other than man (or woman) is considered to be transgendered.
(i now realize that it might not be appropriate to use the word "choose" as the individual may not really have a choice).
since gender is a social construct, identifying as the "non-socially acceptable" gender should not be considered a medical disorder (although I think you could argue it may be a psychological disorder?? is there such a thing as a sociological disorder??)
also, a male can identify as a female and a female can identify as a male. this would be considered to be transexual.
again, the individual may or may not have a choice.
given that the mind is an emergent property of the body (a notion i'm not sure I fully agree with . . .) I would think there is a connection between the body's natural hormone production and the mind's (brain's?) reaction and development.
i guess what i'm having a hard time with is how, in this context, transexualism is still not a disorder.
as Nigel stated, and others agreed with -
2. No, I don't think it's a disorder, outside of the social sense. In other words, it is not a pathology.
3. Yes, I think it is probably biological.
how can it be biological without a pathology?
i haven't read any Jenner interviews, but I imagine the following hypothetical:
Suppose Jenner, being an athlete under tremendous pressure to perform well, began to take large amounts of steroids.
The steroid abuse then caused his body to simultaneously stop producing testosterone and increase it's estrogen production (I believe this is a side effect of steroid abuse).
Olympics are over and steroid abuse stops, however the body never fully resumes "normal" hormone production.
Jenner begins to feel more and more female... transexual.
is this not a disorder?
Just jumping in here, clearly, got some thoughts that may or not be applicable.
I heard about the bolded above, in different contexts, however, when regarding professionals, any steroid cycle is followed by appropriate PCT (post cycle therapy) including SERMs (Selective Esteogen Reuptake Modulators). If not for safety alone, PCT remains nescesary to avoid secondary signs of doping.
That being said, the point is that there seems to be a systemic problem of identity manifesting itself quite determinately now. Instead of dealing with it, we are putting it up on display, like the feature of a freak show.
Not meaning to pontificate, just throwing my hat in the ring.