"What I think of as a positive experience, is the lack of a negative experience": Exploring female-to-male transgender and transsexual individuals' interactions with health care providers
Using qualitative interviews, previous studies have examined gender identity among transgender and transsexual people (i.e., transpeople). However, these studies did not consider the perspectives of female-to-male (FTM) transpeople or situate transpeople's experiences in the larger sociocultural context. Specifically, these studies did not address the mundane challenges faced by transpeople, including the urgent problem of health care barriers. In contrast, other studies used focus groups and questionnaires to examine transpeople's experiences with health care, but did not interpret these experiences from a psychological perspective. In response to the methodological and conceptual deficiencies of previous research, the current study had two objectives. First, I designed the current study to extend psychology's understanding of gender identity and biological sex identity by exploring FTMs' conceptualizations of these identities. Second, using Deaux and Major's (1987) interactive model of gender as a theoretical framework, I designed the current study to explore the function of FTMs' trans-identities in interactions with health care providers. To this end, 21 FTMs completed a brief demographic questionnaire and semi-structured qualitative interview. The use of interviews allowed participants to express their experiences from their perspectives, using their own language. The current study was guided by the following research questions: (1) How do participants in this study describe their various social identities, in particular their biological sex identities and gender identities? and (2) Using Deaux and Major's expectancy characteristics (i.e., social desirability, certainty, situational cues, and self-presentation and self-verification) as a guiding framework, do participants' trans-identities function in their interactions with health care providers? As expected, I captured the multidimensionality of participants' various social identities; in particular, their biological sex and gender identity. Moreover, I found that Deaux and Major's modifying factors were a useful framework for organizing FTMs' interactions with health care providers; specifically, I proposed conceptual models for positive and negative health care experiences. ^
Psychology, Social|Health Sciences, Medicine and Surgery
Melynda Leigh Craig,
""What I think of as a positive experience, is the lack of a negative experience": Exploring female-to-male transgender and transsexual individuals' interactions with health care providers"
Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access).