Transsexual hormone replacement therapy helps those who feel they were born in the wrong body transition to what they feel is their proper sex. Many transgender feel discrimination for not having an easily distinguished gender. Hormone therapy helps them easily blend in and not become a target for discrimination.
Those who live near a metropolitan area should be able to gain access to hormone replacement therapy rather easily. First, make sure you are mentally prepared to take the theerapy. If you are severely dysphoric, you may need to seek the help of a certified mental health professional; preferably one that you trust and has experience assisting with someone in your situation. If you are on a constrained budget, try looking into LGBTI advocacy groups in your area that may be able to offer help. Also consider universities in your vicinity, as many offer psychological services on a sliding scale.
Doubting one’s transsexuality may cause psychological issues when hormone therapy begins to change your body. Always consult a physician about hormone therapy before you begin but throughout the process. You need to be carefully monitored to make sure no abnormalities occur. Think of all the questions you have, do thorough research and be sure to ask your doctor. Remember to advocate for your health when you don’t think you are being heard or your questions are not being answered.
Avoid healthcare providers that go by the Harry Benjamin Standards of Care guidelines drafted by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), or what was originally known as the Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association (HBIGDA). Therapist intervention levels are high with these guidelines and without meeting these standards, they may block your access to hormone therapy. There are many doctors out there who require these Standards of Care before even approaching your case.
There is another set of guidelines that will give you easier access to hormone therapy with little to no therapist’s intervention. Instead look for doctors and clinics who stick to the Tom Waddell Standards; like a physician in the free clinics in San Francisco. Dr. Tom Waddel personally penned these standards from his own experiences with the transgendered. While you may have to attend group meetings, the standards he implements are very straight forward.
It can be difficult finding a particular clinic’s standards. The best advice is to ask others in the transgender community. Find out which doctor or doctors they used and who they recommend. You can also check the internet for clinics in your area that provide hormone therapy. Just remember to get official help, as too little or too many hormones in the body can cause many serious health problems.