Books, blogs, etc.

  • The Big Picture - Wellcome Trust (new Winter 2014-2015)

    The Wellcome Trust has updated its information leaflet on Gender and Sex, including copy on DSD. Here you find an interview with the lovely Mia, a yummy cake indeed.

    And here you find an introduction, aimed at a general audience, to DSD.

    The bigger leaflet concentrating on various aspects of Gender and Sex can be found here.

  • Radio 4, Inside Health - Focus on DSD

    On 2 April, the Radio 4 programme Inside Health presented by GP (family doctor) Mark Porter focused on DSD.

    Listen to the programme for more information on the biological/medical aspects of DSD, and for a perspective from a psychologist and from the father of an affected child.

    A transcript of the interview is also available on the Inside Health website.

    Please note, it may not be possible to listen to this Radio show if you live outside the UK.

    Click here to connect to Radio 4.

  • Far from the Tree, a book by Andrew Solomon, published 2013

    A young woman, living with CAIS, recommended this book to us and thought other parents might be interested in it too, even if it does not discuss a specific DSD case scenario.

    We gladly pass it on:

    From the Far from the Tree website:

    ‘All parenting turns on a crucial question: to what extent parents should accept their children for who they are, and to what extent they should help them become their best selves. Drawing on forty thousand pages of interview transcripts with more than three hundred families, Solomon mines the eloquence of ordinary people facing extreme challenges.

    Whether considering prenatal screening for genetic disorders, cochlear implants for the deaf, or gender reassignment surgery for transgender people, Solomon narrates a universal struggle toward compassion.

    Many families grow closer through caring for a challenging child; most discover supportive communities of others similarly affected; some are inspired to become advocates and activists, celebrating the very conditions they once feared. Woven into their courageous and affirming stories is Solomon’s journey to accepting his own identity, which culminated in his midlife decision, influenced by this research, to become a parent.

    Elegantly reported by a spectacularly original thinker, Far from the Tree explores themes of generosity, acceptance, and tolerance—all rooted in the insight that love can transcend every prejudice. This crucial and revelatory book expands our definition of what it is to be human.’

    The website also gives access to various stories described in the book and to various press reviews.

  • Another book that caught our attention is by Steve Biddulph, who has authored many books on ‘Raising Boys’. He has now written a book on raising girls, and we reproduce here a couple of paragraphs from The Guardian review (see links below)

    Raising Girls: Helping Your Daughter to Grow Up Wise, Warm and Strong is a response to what Biddulph identifies as a "sudden and marked plunge in girls' mental health" over the past five years, years during which the growth of social media has encouraged anxiety and narcissism, childhood exposure to pornography has increased, and corporations have made millions from the pinkification of girlhood. "The world today does not seem to care about girls at it should, and sees them just as a way to make money."

    Though Biddulph's books are busy with pop facts from the kinds of research studies challenged in Cordelia Fine's Delusions of Gender or Natasha Walter's Living Dolls – girl babies "prefer" looking at faces, boys are "hardwired" to deal with objects and systems, etc, etc – his project has always been gently antisexist. Discussing the different ways adults speak to boy and girl toddlers, he says: "I am sure that no parent ever sets out to disadvantage their girls around useful number skills, yet we unconsciously start making the boys practical and the girls emotionally focused. So here's a suggestion, perhaps we ought to reverse this."

    You can read the full review here

    An review article by a mum of 4 daughters which was also published in the British newspaper The Guardian, can be found here

  • Me, My Sex and I, BBC One, August 2011

    The BBC has produced a documentary on DSD, titled 'Me, My Sex and I'. It is a well-researched and carefully produced document that will help many of us be more confident parents (and affected kids and young adults!). Sincere thanks to the production team and to all who have participated on and off camera.

    The British full version of the documentary was broadcast on Tuesday 11 October 2011 at 10.30pm on BB1.

    In the Summer of 2012, we received following email from the documentary’s producers:

    We are very pleased to tell you all that we have now managed to put our programme Me, My Sex & I online, in full, as an archive resource for the public to view. It has taken so long because there are copyright issues, broadcast priorities and technical issues that we needed to sort out, but we have persevered, as the public interest case was overwhelming.

    You can find the programme on the BBC website by either searching “BBC Me My Sex & I” or clicking on this link: . Feel free to forward this link to anyone you feel may find it useful, or link to it on your websites.

    Unfortunately, at the moment you can only view the programme if you’re in the UK. This is because the programme is still being sold to broadcasters in other countries - last year it went to 10 countries including South Africa, Japan and China, and this year has also been shown in Poland, Sweden, Brazil and Canada - which is very good news for spreading awareness. When the worldwide sales rights run out, we will endeavour to extend access globally to the film on our website.

    Reviews of the BBC Broadcast can be found here.

  • Orchids – my intersex adventure

    The movie ‘Orchids – my intersex adventure’ has been shown at a professional DSD conference in Europe, and a number of clinicians recommended it to us.

    Documentary filmmaker, Phoebe Hart, comes clean on her journey of self-discovery to embrace her future and reconcile the past shame and family secrecy surrounding her intersex condition.

    Parent volunteers of have only seen the trailer, which you can access here

    Orchids: my intersex adventure is produced by hartflicker, which is based in Brisbane, Australia. It has already won a number of prizes including: Winner Best Documentary, ATOM Awards and #1 Film at Brisbane International Film Festival 2010 as voted by audiences!

  • 'Growing up Intersexed', Oprah, September 2007

    In September 2007 a young CAIS woman Katie Baratz and her mother, Arlene Baratz, appeared on an episode of Oprah called "Growing Up Intersexed". Visitors from the US can search for the episode on this website []. A summary and images of the show can be found here.

  • Caster Semenya and the middle sex, The Sunday Times, November 2009
  • I'm a woman with male chromosomes, Marie Claire magazine, August 2010
    • This interview with the young CAIS adult, Katie Baratz, is a very accessible and moving story about how she found out about her condition and how she ultimately embraced it.
  • Gender X, the battle over boy or girl, published in Stanford Medicine, Spring 2011
  • Filmmaker traces evolution of 'Intersex', a short article published in the Harvard's student newspaper in March 2011
  • Caster Semenya casts fame aside in search of glory on the track, The Observer, 12 June 2011.
    • Congratulations to the author of this sensitively written piece. By posting this here, we are not making any statement on Semenya's condition. Her ability to overcome the pressures of the last two years and her ambition to further develop her personal talents, and win, is an inspiration to us all.