Jo Proctor on the Story of ‘R’

‘R’ had his hand and forearm swathed in plaster. Two days earlier he’d tried to punch out the reinforced glass window in his front door. That one angry punch had broken most of the bones in his right hand. It was just the last of many angry punches. ‘R’ radiated anger.

Aggression was in the way he walked. Belligerence was in the silver-studded leather jacket hanging from his shoulders even on the hottest day. Anger was in the tremble of his voice. It glared like bitter razors from his eyes.

He was in his early twenties. Melbourne-born. A tiny baby with a micro-penis. An officially undersized willie that, unlike a fish, could not be thrown back. It is part of a medical mythology that is passed around the profession like an urban legend. “Boys with micro-penises can’t grow to be real men if their willies are too small to insert into a vagina,” runs one myth. Another is they’ll grow up thinking they are not ‘proper’ men. They might even think they’re female.

When babies are born with micro-penises physicians pinch the organ between their thumb and forefinger to ensure its stretched length is over three millimeters. If not, the baby’s testicles may be removed, a vagina fashioned from the baby’s colon and the boy raised as female. ‘Real men’ do not have micro-penises.

The practice of rearranging babies’ genitals and raising them as one or other sex is called ‘pediatric gender assignment.’ Its one of the medical devices used to conceal the existence of biological diversity in human sex development.

Doctors in Melbourne had attempted this with ‘R’. Had tried to trick him into thinking he was a girl. They’d failed. And that’s why ‘R’ was angry. Sometimes he vented by punching holes in walls and windows. Eventually his partner, fearing for herself, persuaded him to see a therapist.

On his second visit the therapist thought ‘R’ might like to discuss his gender identity issues. She wondered if he was having difficulty dealing with his lesbianism.

“I’m not a lesbian,” ‘R’ replied. “I’m a man! I don’t have any identity issues!”

“That’s what I mean,” the therapist answered. “You’ve got a vagina, you were raised as a girl, but you identify as a man.”

When ‘R’s therapist attempted to to turn his problems into gender issues she was following a script that is repeated every time an intersex baby is identified.

‘Gender’ was once a grammatical term relating to the practice of endowing inanimate objects with the properties of male, female or neuter. In the 1950s feminism adapted it to describe the way men and women become socialised into their respective roles.

Expatriate New Zealand psychologist, John Money, expanded the feminist concepts by inventing terms like ‘gender expression’ and ‘gender role behaviour.’ He also coined the term ‘gender identity.’ Money believed this developed in infants as they ‘deciphered a continuous multiplicity of signs that pointed in the direction of their being a boy or a girl.’

On one occasion Money attempted to raise an identical twin boy as a girl after the infant lost his penis in a botched circumcision. Money claimed success throughout the 1970s and refused to publish his experiment’s failure when he became aware of it. Consequently the belief that all humans learn to identify themselves as male or female according to the way they are raised became entrenched. Its reason? Doctors believe in the myth of pediatric gender assignments and psychologists think transsexuals have disordered identities.

It is also why transgenderism and psycho-feminist gender theory are not science – they are pseudo-scientific narratives. The most recent product of an ancient cultural bio-variant phobia, only lately cobbled together from John Money’s theories. To this day its primary function is the erasure of biological variation in sex formation.

All attempts to mislead ‘R’ into thinking he was a girl had failed. ‘R’ had not deciphered the continuous multiplicity of signs that pointed in the direction of his being a girl, including his possession of a vagina, to conclude he was female. The attempt to give him a disordered ‘gender identity’ had failed miserably.

In the view of his anger therapist ‘R’ couldn’t win. He was a lesbian. He had a disordered identity because it wasn’t the one gender theory had predetermined for him. The exchange made him even more angry. He stormed out and made his enraged way home. At his front door he eyed up the glass window pane for a moment. He screamed his outrage… and he punched.

‘R’ had his hand and forearm swathed in plaster. Two days earlier he’d tried to punch out the reinforced glass window in his front door. That one angry punch had broken most of the bones in his right hand.

But a rational person should understand his anger.

Editorial Comments:

This story is real. ‘R’ is a real person, and he still lives in Australia.