Grayson Perry: I’m all man

Originally published on The Times Magazine website

He stresses he is a transvestite, not transgender: he dresses up for sexual thrills. Transvestitism is bound up in his taste for fetish sex, PVC clobber and sadomasochism, which featured often in his early work. “The trans spectrum is a whole different thing. I wouldn’t particularly want to live full-time as a woman. It’d be such a fag for starters, the amount of preparation every day!” (It takes him 90 minutes to apply the wig, make-up and padding.) I say I don’t find being a woman nearly so onerous. I’m being facetious, but like many feminists, I’m weary of womanhood being defined as an elaborate façade: fancy nails, false eyelashes, lingerie, sparkly clothes, heels.

“Transvestites – I speak for my own community – are heavily invested in sexism,” he says. “You go to a transvestite gathering, you won’t see anybody in trousers. It’s a joke, you know: if one of the other transvestites regularly wears trousers, they go, ‘They’re going to have a sex change any minute.’ Because only real women wear trousers all the time.”

Yet no one is equal in their sexual fantasies. “At some level, everybody is either being bent over the desk or is bending someone else over a desk. They’re not saying, ‘Shall we get cat litter on the way home?’ while wearing matching fleeces. Although in reality that’s exactly what me and my wife are doing. We live functional lives with people we love and our sex life, all the exotic stuff, happens off stage. And it’s best kept that way.” His first date with his wife was at a fetish club, but now they’re more likely to be at home watching Gogglebox: “It’s so funny. And it can be very moving.”

But we live at a moment when sexual identity appears to be in flux. Perry thinks the transgender lobby “is a very vocal group. They punch above their weight. I do wonder why they are so angry.” Maybe because trans women almost always began as heterosexual men? Perry laughs. “Yes, so they have that entitlement. Yes, it could be.”

Continue reading…


My 16-year-old daughter is convinced she needs a sex change

Originally published at The Guardian

My daughter, who is 16, has a history of mental health issues. Her father is an alcoholic who left the family home when she was very young; she hasn’t seen him for some years and finds meetings with him upsetting. I am sure that this perceived rejection is at the root of her troubles as she suffers from very low self-esteem. She is overweight and was bullied at school, finally refusing to attend. She has been out of education since she was 12.

We have had some input from the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), but nothing has helped and she will no longer engage with them. She has never slept well and was prescribed melatonin. Then, last November, she was prescribed medication by a GP for persistent headaches and took a month’s supply in one go. To the family, this was the strongest example yet of her self-loathing and tendency to self-harm, albeit also perhaps a cry for help.

Following this, I had a telephone consultation with her psychiatrist, who raised the issue of autism – this has been a concern of mine, as she does display a number of traits associated with autism.

However, she is now convinced that she needs a sex change. Given that she has never previously shown any inclination to be anything other than female, it would appear that this is yet another form of self-harm and/or a cry for help.

I am worried that because of the amount of time she spends on the internet, she is being influenced to believing her intentions are correct.

Continue reading…

The New Backlash: Introduction

Originally posted at The New Backlash

‘[T]ransgender” identity politics are not about the human rights of transsexual people. Transgender identity politics are about men weaponizing the suffering of transsexual people in order to destroy women’s boundaries and undermine basic feminist analysis.”

Continue reading…

Pain of sex change: Dissolving of a family

Originally published at Daily Hampshire Gazette

The marriage dissolved not because her husband left to be with another woman. He had begun the process of becoming one, from growing his hair to ingesting female hormones.

“For two years I watched my husband die,” she said.

Benvenuto, who lives in Shutesbury, eventually came to terms with the circumstances. She gradually confided in friends, came to understand her ex’s situation better and met another man. And now, she has detailed the experience in the book “Sex Changes: A Memoir of Marriage, Gender and Moving On,” recently published by St. Martin’s Press.

Continue reading…

Improper Purpose, An Introduction to the Concept

Originally published at Sex Not Gender

The language of “gender identity” legislation is fraught with confusion. The complexity of issues swirling around reproductive sex and its connection (or lack thereof) to gender requires extreme attention to terminology and a delicate balancing of interests. Feminist legal critique demands that women’s need for sex-segregated boundaries be both recognized and weighed against the violent enforcement of normative masculinity in men’s spaces that threatens the safety of gender non-conforming males.

A recent federal district court decision granting a Masschusetts prisoner’s demand for “sex-change” surgery has highlighted the need for a multi-layered approach to “gender identity” protections. This prisoner, Robert Koselik, is a woman killer. He has been sentenced to life without parole for the cold-blooded murder of his wife—the woman he claimed to have loved more than any other in the world. And now, he insists that he actually is a woman. The precedent set by this case builds on a prior 1st Circuit Appeal decision in favor of tax-payer funded hormone treatment for convicted child rapist, Sandy Battista (decision here). These cases serve as vivid illustration that a prohibition against asserting “gender identity” for an improper purpose is a necessary and reasonable legal restraint on the concept of “transgenderism.”

Continue reading…

The “Transsexual” Delusion

Originally posted at

The word “transsexual” implies that the person is in process of or has made a transition between the two sexes. It is impossible, however, to transition from one sex to the other. The only transition possible for a person who believes that he or she is “transsexual” is from a whole person to a person with a mutilated body.

Transsexuality is presented as the conviction that one has been born into the wrong body – that while the body is one sex, the brain is the other. It follows that this “mistake” can be corrected with surgery and hormones, so that the “transsexual” person can live as a member of the desired sex rather than his or her birth sex. Since there is no scientific evidence to back up the belief a person’s body can be one sex and their brain the other, transsexuality may be characterized as a delusion. The general criteria for a delusion are…

Continue reading…