Gender euphoria as a diagnostic and treatment tool
August 16 @ 10:45 am - 12:15 pm
As professionals who work with trans/gender variant clients (or who want to work with such clients), we are generally familiar with the DSM-V diagnosis of gender dysphoria and the WPATH guidelines and the history of (and controversies surrounding) these guidelines. However, clinicians are typically taught to view the trans/gender variant experience in terms of distress, using words like “discomfort” or “unease” to characterize clients’ experiences with their assigned gender. While many of our clients’ experiences match these descriptors, some — particularly those with non-binary identities — do not relate to their bodies or roles in this way and/or feel that “dysphoria” doesn’t adequately describe their feelings.This workshop will introduce clinicians to the concept of gender euphoria: the feeling of being at home in one’s body, role, or gender presentation. Clients who do not relate to traditional descriptions of gender dysphoria may nonetheless describe feelings of joy and comfort at being correctly gendered, dressing in their preferred manner, or imagining their ideal bodies. The concept of gender euphoria can be used to help guide our clients to a better understanding of their unique identities and to break the stigma of not feeling “trans enough” for traditional models. Clinicians will also be taught how to integrate this concept throughout their organization or practice, including training other clinicians and creating policies and procedures around the provision of hormone/surgery letters.