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Zhanna Wilde

About transsexualism and transsexuals' position
in Russia, Ukraine and former USSR countries

Personal page of the author.

In this article I want to state my personal opinion of this question,which may differ from other peoples opinions, and the more so from official persons,
who work with this problem because this is their work.
All I write here I experienced myself, going through this way from its very beginning to the end.
And also from private communications with many transsexuals from Russia,Ukraine,Belarus,Baltic states and Israel.



If to say about transsexualism and transsexuals position in Russia,Ukraine and former USSR countries,the situation still hard and ambiguity at present day.
This is because of, in the first place, absence of legal base from authority on this question.
For example in Russia if one wants to get official permission for sex change operation, he need to change documents first. And he needs to make sex change operation to change documents.
The result is deadlock. As result courts are snowed with statements of claim and this is not a fact that courts always deliver fair decision. I don't mention that there is no legal base at all in many ex-USSR countries.
Generally this can be observed in most of middle-Asian republics, Baltic states and Caucasus.
And those laws that exists in at present day, particularly in Ukraine and Blarus, unreasonable tough, imperfect, and sometimes, sorry, just foolish. Majority of these laws has ambiguous statements and may be treatise in different ways. For example according to Ukraine and Belarus law about transsexuals' treatment, patient must be observed in mental hospital during a month, where he experienced not only mental,but sometimes physical pressure!
I know a situation when transsexual was located in one room with criminals who nearly rape her sentencing
"Now we will make a girl from you!" Even the fact of such severe and cynical relation is terrible and awful.
But it is twice as terrible and awful that doctors and hospital employees neglect it and did not undertake any actions. This was the way of how they tried to break man and force him to refuse his idea, crazy in their opinion,
to be one whom she feels herself all the life.
To be one she is. Certainly this is single instance, but there are no warranties it can't repeat any more.
The idea itself to place the transsexual in psychiatric hospital is inherently severe, senseless and useless.
If its purpose is to determine mental condition, then it, as it take place in Israel and other civilized countries,
can be done by just a psychologist, who offers to take some different tests and observing the patient behavior.
And what is the cost of clause that forbids sex change operation to one who have wife and/or non-aged children.
I even stay silent about the age from which it is authorized to do such operations - 25 years!
Today it is new editions of laws preparing in Ukraine and Belarus. But whether they will be better then former ones, in which all the mistakes and defects would be considered, or not - is still a big question.
There is a fear of that, considering mood of a society and being guided purely by political purposes and a conjuncture, they can be even tougher.
As it was demanded by representatives of Communist Party of Ukraine at one of sessions of the highest legislature of authority - the Verkhnaya Rada.
The deputy from this fraction clearly said: " all these transsexuals need to be imprisoned in madhouses long time ago and we need to purify our society from such sort of perverts", end of the citation.
The same moods reign in a legislature of authority of many former USSR countries.


What is about qualified medical aid to transsexuals, it is necessary to examine this question in details.
I haven't exact statistical data, but can say that according to different assessments quantity of sex change operation significantly increased during the last years. Today in some large cities of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus it is possible to perform such operation, much cheaper then abroad, and even, as in Moscow for example, on the certain quotas, free of charge.
Though, conditions in some medical institutions and the quality of the operation itself still leave much to be improved. But there are some pleasant exclusions - today such operations can be performed by: Adamyan R.T.
and Sokolshik M.M. in Moscow Mikhaylichenko V.V. in St. Petersburg Pukhov A.G. in Chelyabinsk Khrapach V.V. in Kiev and so on.
These highly qualified specialists mastered present-day methods of such operations. And in some cases, as in case of prof. AdamyanR.T. for example, supplemented it with their own original innovations, which successfully implemented in practice.
I can say I am very glad with operation result and limitless thankful to my, as I called them, second parents,
R.T. Adamyan and A.R. Jumanov for the new life they gifted me.
And there are quite a few thankful patients like me today.
However, in whole, situation with rendering qualified medical aid to transsexuals has much to improve at present day. The cause is low competency or sometimes incompetency of medical workers, whose job is to be busy with this problem. There is acute shortage of hormonal therapy specialists, psychologists. Specialists who know how to do with transsexuals doesn't studied in medical universities. And those who try to study this problem, in major approach it formally, and while proposing treatment they guided by obsolete medical knowledge and experience of their colleagues, which have been disproved in scientific world long ago.
And these "sorrow-medicians" can't find time to visit library, or, at present day, an Internet, where many useful information can be found. Looks like they are too lazy to do so. The easiest way is to get reference book with obsolete information and set a treatment for patient. As result many transsexuals set hormonal therapy to themselves, in the very end this has sad results. In the best case these peoples becomes invalids, in the worst they just dies.


It is worth to examine in details actions of medical committees, which gives permissions to perform sex change operations, and to change documents.
Here I tell about my own, concrete episode and the facts I observed myself.
Unfortunately such episodes is not single. Many transsexuals from Belarus, Ukraine and Russia were in such situation, and sometimes even in more difficult.
According to Ukrainian and Belarus, they are almost equal, laws about medical aid to peoples who need to change (correct) sex, patient who want to change sex must:

1. During a year, and sometimes longer, to be observed by sexual pathologist assigned to work with such patient by local authorities.

2. It is mandatory to pass stationary examinations psycho neurological specialized clinic during 30 days.
I wrote about it earlier.

3. Pass different psycho tests and numerous, sometimes absolutely unnecessary, analyses.

And only after all that he can get to a specialized medical committee, which decides whether or not to give permission to perform an operation.
If one gets such permission, he can get specified-form certificate with which he may get to a clinic to perform operation. In Ukraine such committee assembled one or two times a year.
This depends on quantity of patients who submitted declarations. If there are few patients, and this mainly depends on sexual pathologist who observes such patients, committee may not to assemble at all.
It is not necessary to say about preconceived and sometimes rough relation of some committee members.
For example chairman of one committee openly said "I am not going to procreate transsexuals in Ukraine".
And one member of the same committee said "Are you going to change sex from female to male only to receive pension earlier?" At times hard-heartedness, soullessness, baseless decline produce sad results.
In this way at the committee I passed, there are was another MtF girl from small Ukrainian city with me.
This girl passed the committee second time and was sure that in this time, al her tortures and afflictions are going to end at last. She fulfilled all the requirements of previous committee, collected and granted all the necessary documents. And what do you think? They declined again!
However there are was absolutely no ground for that. She was just advised one more time to think well and come the next year. I don't know how, but I feel that irreparable trouble may happen and called to her friend, inducing to follow her. My foreboding does not fake me.
Being in no minute at her home friend took this girl out of the loop.
Unfortunately we can't save another girl from Novosibirsk.
About this aching-the-heart accident one can read at here:
She was clever, beautiful, kind, and vulnerable. Facing the soullessness of officials who declined permission to perform the operation, the transfobia of her boss who fired her, rejected by own and near peoples, she have not seen another way, ate medicaments and make suicide. And how much such accidents we just don't know about? Unfortunately there are still very many attempts of suicide among transsexuals. However medics proudly reports: "We cured one more patient. He doesn't come again - this means we cured him!" Everything else, as it said, interests no one.


Now as to about documents exchange order.
In Ukraine documents exchange order regulated by the same legislative acts.
After one performed an operation, he came to the same medical commission,which now decides whether to give permission to change documents or not.
What about me, I consider humiliating the procedure,where I need to visually proof presence of another genital. Official documents from clinic where operation were performed had not satisfied the committee.
And in some committees there very jealous relation to their colleagues.
So, in Ukraine they don't want to give permission foe operation only because all the medical examination was performed in Israel. The official diagnose from Israel - nuclear transsexualism don't satisfied commission and it was advised to me to pass all again. And especially to stay in psychiatry clinic stationary for 30 days.
"If you pass examinations here, then perform operation here" - declared committee chairman.
"But I am returned to Ukraine and now live there"
- I answered. "This is not interests us". "Pass all the procedures at common basis".
Exactly same situation occurred with receiving documents exchange permission.
It was said to me exactly the same: "You have performed operation in Moscow,so go here and let they change your documents". "But I am Ukrainian citizen and live in Kiev". "This is not concern us".
This is how it was, short and clear.
At least I was successful in getting the permission, but this win costs me wasted nerves, health and strengths.
But it was only beginning of hell circles journey. It can't be called in other way.
In Israel al the documents were changed in 2-3 days. Therewith, I need for this only:

1. Write a statement in Department of the Interior and attach to this statement

2. Reference from clinic about the such operation were performed

3. Reference from domestic doctor, assured in Ministry of Public Health, who performed medical check and confirmed the fact of performing such operation.

But in Ukraine documents exchange process takes a whole year.
A year of pacing the instances, persuasions, tears, outright extortions and humiliating.
Although I granted all the necessary documents in time, employees of registry office, the foundation which must solve this problem according to law, has always founded causes for the process not to move from dead point. Simple no one wants to do something. Thanks to their "diligence" in fact I am NO ONE.
Without registry and without work, because it is impossible to get a job with old documents.
There are also were problems with get in and out of country. And it was extremely necessary to get out of a country. After the heart operation performed in Israel,and also after sex change operation performed in Moscow,
I need to be observed by medics and pass examinations.
It was also necessary for me to meet with my family who lives in Israel.
All that required overwhelming efforts, still injuring soul pain and sorrow.
Sometimes situations reached nonsense.
Thus Russian female border guard takes my passport, then looks in it for a long time and then loudly said into whole coach:" Sorry, are you Georgy Stanislavovich?" She clearly saw the attached reference about the operation where my sex was changed from male to female. But it looks like she wants all the coach passengers knows who sit near them.
Such situation repeated when I flight from Israel to Ukraine.
Israel border guards relate to me with tact and understanding.
They even congratulate me with such a huge event in my life. But when I arrived to Kiev I saw completely different picture. First, gloomy Ukrainian border guard examine my documents, then me.
After a short pause he nearly throw passport in my face and cried "would you now prove me that this is you?!" "Stay calm" I answered "this is me, and this is my passport, and documents about sex change operation were performed to me in it" So, through such humiliations and insults transsexuals needs to pass not once.
It is good if you have all necessary references or documents with you.
But in most cases, especially at early stages of preparing to operation, when patient already begin the life of chosen sex, many transsexuals haven't any references, and this, very often, have negative results.
I know an event when law enforcement employees beat up transsexual, heavily mutilating her face.
They beat her only because they don't like such peoples and consider "perverts".
And it was done by peoples who need to protect the honor and dignity of citizens! Who protects the law!
Then what can I say about common citizens, many of whom just dream to "kill" such a "pervert".


As it known, great role in making social opinion, developing culture and morale of citizens, plays mass media.
This is press, radio, TV and Internet. Thanks to them, most peoples form one or another opinion about facts, events and peoples. To the great regret, at present day, most of the population from the ex-USSR countries has the opinion about transsexualism and transsexuals like about some incomprehensible event,strange,peculiar people, which, as it seem to them, just a sexual perverts and "great sinners".
Peoples, in essence, doesn't understand the problem, and accordingly doesn't understand and accept such peoples. They relate to transsexuals, in best case, with mockery, and in worst case,with aggression and sometimes cruelly. Because of my activity kind I need to communicate with many peoples.
They are simple workers and employees, pensioners, church servants and businessmen.
So, after one explain and tell them clearly about this problem, they sincerely amazes and said "Really?
We just doesn't know about, we think you, transsexuals, all are mad.
But you provided to be such peoples as everyone else. You just was unfortunate, nature played an evil joke with you". If people can receive reliable, truthful scientific information then misunderstanding and the more - unacceptance of transgender peoples becomes lesser and lesser with every day.
But, while in internet, where words "transsexual" and "transsexualism", thanks to porno sites, associated with prostitution, and press and TV still presents to their readers and watchers this theme like "XXX".
During this, usually, signing word "equal" between transsexuals, transvestites and homosexuals, entangling and mixing all the conceptions, society would not accept these peoples and consider them outcasts.
Unfortunately at present day there is very very few programs at TV and articles in press,which will throw light upon this problem deeply and scientifically. Differing from Israel, where it is special TV channel, translating science and popular science movies about gender and transgender theme.
Moreover, translation performs both in Russian and Hebrew.
Thanks to that, even small children know that transsexualism is an illness, which can be successfully cured in the world. And transsexuals is not a perverts, but, as all, - normal peoples.
But not just usual.

Zhanna Wilde ® 2008г.


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