On February 9th, 2010, The American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, version 5 (DSM-V) revision working groups released their Proposed Revisions for the areas in the manual under consideration for deletion, removal, revision, and addition.
The current version of the DSM -- version 4, text revision, aka DSM-IV-TR, was released in 1994. The DSM-III was released in 1980.
The DSM-III revisions began in 1974, after a lengthy series of efforts by a small group of Doctors led by Joseph Nicolosi, Benjamin Kaufman, and the late Charles Socarides to prevent the delisting of Homosexuality in the DSM-II. If those three names seem familiar, it's because although they quit the APA in 1972, in 1992 they formed the organization NARTH.
During a recent fracas here at Bilerico, I pointed out that Homosexuality was never really taken out of the DSM. In light of current events described below, let's look at how it was that the GLB community was duped, and the Trans community took its place.
The person in charge of the DSM-III was Robert Spitzer. Some of you may recall the name from 2001 when he said in a paper that highly motivated individuals could successfully change their sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual. What many folks may not realize was that in 1974, as he was getting the go ahead to start work on the DSM-III, he argued, successfully, to put into code in the DSM-II at the time (the 7th and 8th Printings), a designation of "sexual orientation disturbance."
This replaced homosexuality in the DSM-II, and was commonly referred to at the time (up through 1980 when the DSM-III was replaced) as "sissy boy syndrome."
Robert Spitzer is generally credited with the way that mental illness is categorized in the modern day. Its a pretty academic thing, so suffice to say that he's one of the most influential people in psychiatry and psychology since Jung, Freud, and Skinner -- he's the ultimate A-lister.
The initial DSM-III writing was pretty much finished within a year, and then a snag hit that stalled it something fierce. NIMH did field testing on the diagnostics involved in the write (that is, the federal government), and there arose a pretty big fight over the concept of Neuroses. NIMH wanted it in the book, while Spitzer and the DSM-III crew wanted it out.
A compromise was reached. "Disorder" was followed by (Neuroses) and ego-dystonic homosexuality replaced "sexual orientation disturbance" from the DSM-II.
This was in 1979. Six years after homosexuality was supposedly removed from the DSM.
Keep that in mind, people. You were lied to by the leaders who claimed victory in delisting homosexuality. There are still copies of the later printings of the DSM-II and the DSM-III out there, and you can do the research for yourself.
At the same time, Transsexualism was first listed in the manual. That is, until 1980, there was no transsexualism in the DSM.
In 1987, the DSM-III-R came out, again under the guidance of Spitzer. Categories were renamed, and by this time Psychiatry had gained a strong measure of value and trust in the public sphere.
It was at this time, as well, that homosexuality was finally so deeply buried in the manual that most people more or less figured it was dead, as Sexual Orientation Disturbance became "sexual disorder not otherwise specified."
Except in one area, and that one area was "sissy boy syndrome," which, at this point, was renamed and dropped into a category called Gender Identity Disorder along with Transsexualism.
It was applied to children, and thus we gained Gender Identity Disorder in youth as the childhood diagnosis of homosexuality.
The shift was complete. In my last article I noted that 63% of LGB folks were linked by something, and that something was the predictability of gender variance in children as a precursor for being gay, lesbian, or bisexual.
Now you know why and how. Most GLB folks gave up the ghost in terms of fighting the APA by 1990, since by that time people such as Ray Blanchard, J. Michael Bailey, Kurt Freund, Susan Bradley, Kenneth Zucker, Richard Green, and Simon LeVay had come along and begun doing work that, ultimately, supported the idea that being gay is inherent and inborn.
Indeed, in the end, they proved it.
However, they had a problem as a group of researchers, and that problem was what to do about all the kids who were still listed.
It should be noted that the above people are all linked together. Most of them have done extensive work with a body formerly known as the Clarke Institute, now part of CAMH. This is a Canadian institution, and most of them are not only the leaders in their fields, but also are on the board or editors of the peer reviewed journal Archives of Sexual Behavior. Which is also where most of them publish.
And it should also be noted that the above people see gay as ok, and trans as absolutely terrible and without merit. Indeed, they see trans people as merely gay folks who are just too afraid or freaked out about being gay and so they change their sex.
Two of them favor what most trans folk consider to be reparative therapy -- with a positive goal being making the kids gay, not trans.
Kelley Winters is one of the folks who contributes, and she writes on issues of gender identity reform. Kelley has, in the past, noted that Zucker, one of the people who favors reparative therapy for young kids who will grow up to be gay, is on the committee to revise the DSM. So is Ray Blanchard.
They are not friends of the Trans community, and especially not friends of transsexuals. They are, in fact, considered to be just as dangerous to us as the religious extremists who hate all of us.
And yet, they are some of the best friends of the LGB community. Seriously. And their work in LGB stuff is top notch, but we Trans folk are so alien to them, and we throw off their pet theories so much because they think of us as simply gay people and cannot escape that mindset, that rather than listen to us, they have consistently tried to shoehorn us into their own ideas -- which are decidedly not trans.
All of which leads us to the DSM-IV and DSM-IV-TR, which essentially formalized the concepts we generally see described as "transgender" and finally shifted the focus entirely from the "gay" side to the "trans" side. In these publications, transsexualism was renamed Gender Idnetity Disorder, and all of it was put into "trans". Except one group of paraphilias, where the individual people act out of sexual (intercourse type) gratification and desire.
That group was called Transvestic Fetishist. Kelley's recent article talks about how that really needs to be taken out.
Well, as noted at the top here, the DSM-IV is expected to be published in final form in May of 2013, and accepted in 2012, and so the working groups have released new versions of all the stuff above.
For the first time in years, Disorder is not found in the diagnosis for Trans folk. It is in the classification for Transvestic Fetishist, however. And TF has a few new wrinkles added to it, as well. One of which allows it to be used as an alternative for diagnosing trans folk.
Trans folk no longer have Gender Identity Disorder. They have Gender Incongruence.
What is that?
Well, I've actually been sorta talking about that for the last couple months. In my series of articles on Trans, Sex, Gender. When I wrote them, I talked about how these things I was describing aren't merely theories in the sense of being unproven and untested, and that they weren't merely "fringe" concepts, but were the mainstream ideas about those things.
In the comments here on occasion, some have said that this revision would be terrible for transfolk. That it would result in all kinds of restrictions and so forth -- gloom and doom pronouncements, and I've pretty steadfastly noted that it would be nothing of the kind.
The new drafts released show a markedly broad understanding of trans experiences, and reflect the diversity I spoke of and the science behind the articles that I wrote. I leave it to the reader to guess how it was I knew all those things.
And, finally, in the GI in Children has, at long last, been narrowed with the goal of reducing the ethical consideration involved in treating gay folks for being gender variant. This was done by more clearly defining it and requiring more than two factors, so that it focuses on just the trans youth.
One worry is that it goes a bit too far and may block potential treatment of kids in need.
So, in truth, it looks like homosexuality will finally be erased from the DSM sometime in 2013.
Don't you think its about time we moved trans stuff out of the DSM and into the medical condition books?