Saudi transsexual bemoans identity crisis

Man who underwent sex change four years ago demands recognition from authorities
Arguably the worlds most famous cross dresser, Frank N Furter from The Rocky Horror Picture Show. (Photo for illustrative purposes only)
By Beatrice Thomas
Sun 09 Mar 2014 11:35 AM

A Saudi Arabian man who underwent a sex change operation in 2010 has complained about a lack of help from authorities which have yet to officially recognise his new identity, it was reported.

The man, aged in his 30s, who was born a woman, told the Saudi Gazette that he underwent the operation overseas after discovering “sweeping changes in my physical features” during his sophomore year at university. Tests later found he had male chromosomes.

“My body hair grew like men and my voice became harsh. Nothing in me indicated that I was a woman,” he was quoted as saying.  “I lived a difficult life until I graduated from university."

However, he said after returning to the kingdom and providing authorities with medical reports, he was sent from one department to another before eventually being told by Makkah’s Al Noor Specialist Hospital to wait while it formed a committee of doctors to confirm the sex change.

“I’ve been waiting for this committee to form ever since,” he was quoted as saying, adding that he was asked to resubmit documents again in 2012.

“I felt very desperate because nobody cared about me and the difficult things I was going through.

“The procedures were very slow. I’m in dire need of a psychological rehabilitation programme, which can help me cope with my new life.”

Makkah Health Affairs spokesman Bassam Maghrabi told the newspaper it had received a letter from the man in February 2013 and formed a committee specifically to discuss the case.

The case was being reviewed by health affairs in Makkah, he reportedly said.

Transgenderism and homosexuality are currently outlawed in all of the Gulf states.

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