Understanding Transsexualism

By Stephen L. Braveman, M.A., L.M.F.T., D.S.T.
MC-CAMFT Newsletter
November, 1999
Monterey, CA

(This article originally appeared in the November, 1999 edition of the Monterey County Chapter of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists newsletter)

Do you know the difference between a transvestite and a transsexual? Any idea what the Standards of Care for transsexuals includes? How to deal with a spouse who suddenly finds their partner wants to change genders? When you can treat a transsexual and when to refer out to a Gender Specialist?

Come to the November luncheon meeting and hear Dr. Mildred Brown answer these, and many other, interesting questions about the often misunderstood client who is either a MTF (Male To Female) or FTM (Female To Male) pre-op or post-op transsexual.

Dr. Mildred Brown is a clinical sexologist and therapist in private practice in San Jose, California. She has also been a professor of clinical sexology at the Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality in San Francisco. Mildred is considered one of the world’s most leading authorities in the psychotherapy treatment of transsexuals today. Along with writer, journalist and marketer, Chloe Ann Rounsley, Dr. Brown has co-authored True Selves: Understanding Transsexualism (see accompanying book review). Mildred assists other therapists (including this author) through consultation and second signaturing (a requirement for both hormone therapy and sexual reassignment surgery) and supervises trainees in her practice.

In addition, Dr. Brown will be joined by Mr. Devon McCollum. Devon is a FTM (Female To Male) transsexual working with both Dr. Brown and this author. Mr. McCollum has graciously come forward to tell his story to MC-CAMFT members in an effort to widen local clinician’s knowledge base on this important and frequently misdiagnosed condition.

Come prepared with questions and an open mind. This presentation will definitely challenge your clinical opinions and open doors to new personal insights regarding issues we sex therapists deal with today!

Stephen L. Braveman, LMFT, DST
PPG Chair