Theory in a Digital Age: A Project of English 483 Students, Coastal Carolina University

Dysphoria of the Body/Mind and the Alternative Solution

Transgender people are those who believe that they are born in the wrong body. Born the wrong gender to be more specific. In order to resolve this body/mind dysphoria, they often undergo gender reassignment surgeries. Gender reassignment is defined as, “a procedure that changes a person’s external genital organs from those of one gender to those of the other” (medical-dictionary). In other words, it is when somebody transforms their body from one gender to the other.There is also another body/mind dysphoria that is referred to as otherkin. This group believes that they were born in the wrong body as well, but instead of being born into the wrong gender, they were born into the wrong species. Otherkin people will often undergo a species reassignment such as adding a tail, or whiskers to resolve this mistake.

Living as a transgender person, or otherkin, can be extremely hard for those who have to suppress their feelings. In the article, I’m a Transgender Woman, and This is What It’s Like, the author, Parker Molloy describes his time before coming out as transgender as, “the dissonance between my mind, body and life itself became too much too handle. Every morning I woke up feeling more shame and anxiety than ever before” (Molloy). This is often a feeling that a lot of people who are born in the wrong body feel. Molloy continues to say, “I’d begun to experience the physical and mental impact of the hormones, and with it a new sense of clarity, peace and happiness” (Molloy.) Molloy was lucky enough to be able to transform into the body that was truly comfortable with. However, for others that may not always be the case.
In the 2st century, people are more open and honest about their sexuality and desires. However, physically becoming those desires may not always be an option for some people. The cost for a male to female reassignment can cost anywhere from $7,000 to $24,000 and a female to male reassignment can exceed $50,000 (surgeryencylopedia). Even if cost is not a problem for some, they still have to take inconsideration the risks that can often come with surgeries the extensive. Risks after the surgery can include infection, and repairing, and there can also be social and emotional issues as well (surgeryencylopedia). Often times, people are afraid to actually commit to such an extensive surgery. There are always the what ifs of after having the surgery.  Reasons such as cost, health issues, social reasons or uncertainty can play a big role in determining if somebody is willing to transform themselves into a different bodily form. This video gives an insight into how extensive the procedure is.

 Through a game like Second Life, they can become the gender or species that they believe they were intended to be. In the article Becoming Dragon, they mention a group of people who call themselves Otherkin. Otherkin people are a subculture group who socially identify as partially or entirely non-human. In the Becoming Dragon article, there is a girl called Alynna Vixen who considers herself to be a fox. She has known since she was seven that she is a fox and that she has a phantom tail which causes her pain when she sits on it. For Alynna, Second Life is the only place where she can be her “true self” (Becoming Dragon). She would like to to undergo a species change, however at this point in her life that is not an option so she uses Second Life as a way to make that happen.

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