As a transgender woman, I often get strange questions about what it means to be transgender, what is in my pants, how it happened to me, and I could go on and on. In this section, we hope to provide a comprehensive list of common misconceptions associated with transgender folks.
How did this happen to you?
Well, I was walking home one night...
Look, this didn't 'happen' to anyone, unless you want to count being born as a cause. There are actually many reasons why transgender people are who they are, but there is no doubt, as science has shown, that we are real, that this is real, and that there is nothing mentally wrong with a person who is transgender.
Transgender women are just men dressing up as women to look at little girls in bathrooms.
Where do I start with this nonsense?
A good place is with the acronym LGBTQ. Until the addition of 'Q' by GLAAD in late 2016, 'T,' which stands for transgender, was the only subgroup in the mix whose identity had nothing to do with sexual preference. Transgender folks are not transgender because of whom they bed with, they are transgender because their gender identity doesn't align with their assigned sex at birth.
Now, it can also be rightfully said that perversion of the type that would drive any adult into the bathroom to prey upon a child has nothing to do with sex or sexual preference. Sexual predators and transgender women are not synonymous. Republicans and the GOP would have the country believing that every single one of us are pedophiles, but this simply isn't true. There was an article at www.patheos.com that stated, with facts, that "church is more dangerous for kids than transgender bathrooms." Last time I checked, lots of Republicans go to church.
Long story short (too late), no, we are not men in dresses looking for kids. We are women in dresses and skirts looking for jobs we will never get, but that is another story.
Transgender-'ism' is a mental illness.
Let's address this correctly from the beginning. Transgenderism is not really a word we use. We are transgender, or we are women, or we are men, or we are non-binary. It isn't a movement or a political awakening. It's just who we are.
As far as it being a mental illness, that is also incorrect, but rooted in knowledge of the time. Concepts also rooted in knowledge of the time are the notion that the earth was flat, headaches and mental illnesses are caused by evil spirits, and that universe revolved around the earth. Time, science, and wisdom has concluded that these things are simply not true.
As recently as 2015, Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) performed a study to determine whether transgender individuals were transgender because of mental illness, or not. In their words,
"Disorders of gender identity affect as many as 1 in 100 people. Transgender individuals are those who identify with a gender that differs from their natal sex. Different etiologies have been suggested as the cause of transgender identify however none have been proven definitively."
Entries in the DSM-V (the fifth version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) stating that being transgender was a mental illness were removed after finding that gender dysphoria, the state of depression some transgender people get due to their physical appearance not aligning with the gender identity, was caused by a societal stigmatization of transgender people, often propagated by religious institutions, political pundits seeking to further instill ignorance in their base, and badly designed stereotypical media representations on who transgender folks are.
In essence, the depression transgender folks exhibited were actually caused by those who were blaming it on being transgender.