Understanding Gender Dysphoria

Sam Ferguson | July 15, 2015

Today’s tectonic shift in sexual mores is not unrelated to matters of gender, as the popular acronym LGBT—lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender—suggests. One could even argue that confusion about gender has helped facilitate this recent sea change in sexual ethics. It’s a great question of our day: what does it mean to be male and female?

This is why Mark Yarhouse’s new book, Understanding Gender Dysphoria: Navigating Transgender Issues in a Changing Culture, is not only timely but also necessary. It marks a step forward in Christian engagement with gender issues by grappling with the topic’s most contested area: gender identity. Yarhouse, professor of Christian thought in mental health practice at Regent University, defines gender identity as follows:

Gender identity concerns—or what we refer to as gender dysphoria—refers to experiences of gender identity in which a person’s psychological and emotional sense of themselves as female, for instance, does not match or align with their birth sex as male, or vice versa. (19, emphasis added)

What causes someone to feel female while having a male body, or male while female? How common is gender confusion? Can it be prevented or treated? Is cross-dressing or sex-reassignment surgery ever okay? What does a Christian response look like? In addressing these questions, Yarhouse draws…

To read the rest of this article, visit http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/book-reviews-understanding-gender-dysphoria-transgender-mark-yarnhouse.