Gender Dysphoria: What to Look For

Children who have gender dysphoria have a marked incongruence between the gender they have been assigned (i.e. assumed by others to be, based on sex characteristics), and their experienced gender. In childhood this takes the form of a strong preference for dress, toys, and activities associated with the other gender. They may assert that they are the other gender, will grow up to be the other gender. As they reach adolescence they may express a strong dislike of their own sexual anatomy and a strong desire to have sex characteristics of their experienced gender. It’s not gender dysphoria unless the incongruity causes the person significant distress or impairment in important areas of functioning.