By Robin Marantz Henig, NPR
“Pregnancy and childbirth were very male experiences for me,” said a 29-year-old respondent in a study reported Friday in Obstetrics and Gynecology. “When I birthed my children, I was born into fatherhood.”
If this statement at first seems perplexing, it’s less so when you realize the person talking is a transgender man – someone who has transitioned from a female identity to a male or masculine identity.
He is one of 41 participants in a study of how it feels to be male and pregnant, a study the authors think may be the first of its kind.
Pregnancy as a transgender man is unlike any other kind. No one expects a man to be pregnant, and the study participants said they were often greeted with double-takes, suspicion and even hostility from strangers and health care providers. “Child Protective Services was alerted to the fact that a ‘tranny’ had a baby,” one participant reported. Continue reading
Pamela Howland, 76, moved back to San Francisco in part because of the discrimination she faced in Arizona hospitals because she is transgender. (Ryder Diaz/KQED)
Editor’s Note: In the coming years, California’s senior population is expected to grow more than twice as fast as the total population. As part of our occasional series on health called Vital Signs, we’re spending the month focusing on older adults. Today we meet 76-year-old Pamela Howland. When she retired, Howland decided she could finally live as a woman after spending her entire life as a man. But being a transgender senior has come with many challenges, including discrimination, even in health care settings..
By Pamela Howland
I had decided that the years I had left, I wanted to live the way I wanted to live. It was a shame that I had to make the change because it would have been so much easier to continue living as a male rather than encounter the difficulties of living as a transgender female that doesn’t pass as female. Continue reading