Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Gender Identity and Autism Spectrum Disorders

"An increasing number of reports describe gender-related concerns in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Abelson [1] drew attention to the specific potential for gender issues in individuals with ASD, and subsequently, a number of case reports and at least one systematic study have appeared in the literature [2-9]. Perhaps the earliest case report [2] was of two male individuals with ASD who presented with “feminine gender-stereotyped preoccupations,” and subsequent work has cited this case report as an early example of comorbid gender identity disorder (GID) and ASD [9]. A subsequent case report appeared in 1997 [3] and drew attention to the hypothesis that impairment in social interaction could contribute to atypical gender identity formation.

"The report of two cases by Mukaddes [3] was notable for identifying patterns of transgender identity and behavior in two boys seen at the same clinic for several years, although even in this study the individuals were not followed-up beyond a young age (7 and 10 years) — a critical shortcoming given the low rate of persistent transgender identification following puberty [10]. It was not until 2005 that a case report described an adult with Asperger syndrome (AS) and “GID according to DSM-IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual) criteria” [8]. The authors go on to introduce the hypothesis that GID developed as a “sequel to AS,” highlighting the extreme-male brain hypothesis and the patient adopting “male emotional and cognitive traits.” Perhaps most recent was the report of two cases of individuals with both ASD and GD according to DSM-5 criteria [11]. In this paper, the authors highlight specific aspects of ASD, including theory of mind deficits and cognitive style as being potential influences on the process of gender identity formation." READ: Gender Identity and Autism Spectrum Disorders -- Yale J Biol Med. 2015 Mar; 88(1): 81–83. Published online 2015 Mar 4. PMCID: PMC4345542 Focus: Autism Spectrum Disorders

Related article: "While this article is specifically about autism and gender identity, it cites multiple research studies that confirm, once again, that MOST children who question their gender in childhood end up as gay or bisexual if left alone. Also, socially immature/isolated kids, or kids with ASD, probably need even longer to figure out who they are, which makes a good argument that dysphoricadolescents and even young adults with social anxiety or other similar issues should not start medical transition, as they too often do." Read: President Obama, how is this not anti-gay conversion therapy? -- Posted on April 9, 2015 4thwavenow