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transsexual

[ trans-sek-shoo-uhlor, especially British, -seks-yoo- ]

noun

  1. a person whose gender identity does not correspond to their sex assigned at birth; transgender.
  2. a person who has undergone or wants to undergo hormone therapy or surgery to align their physical characteristics more closely with their gender identity.


adjective

  1. of, relating to, or characteristic of a person whose gender identity does not correspond to their sex assigned at birth.

transsexual

/ trænzˈsɛksjʊəl /

noun

  1. a person who permanently acts the part of and completely identifies with the opposite sex
  2. a person who has undergone medical and surgical procedures to alter external sexual characteristics to those of the opposite sex


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Sensitive Note

The vocabulary around transsexualism originated in medical study of human sexuality. In the 1980s, transsexualism was listed as a mental illness in the manuals of the American Psychological Association and the World Health Organization. Transsexual and transsexualism are generally no longer used in the medical or psychological professions, having been replaced by gender dysphoria in medical terminology. Today, the transsexual identity is perceived to fall under the wider umbrella term trans, though it is not exactly equivalent to the term transgender. Transsexual is still sometimes the preferred term among older trans people who have been using the term transsexual to describe their own identity for years. However, owing to the previous association of transsexual with a mental disorder diagnosis, and a history of disparaging use in popular culture, the term is now often considered offensive in general use, especially among younger speakers. There is also some tension between the terms transsexual and transgender, the former term associated with external and physical markers of gender identity, and the latter with internal identification along a gender continuum. Still other speakers use the two terms interchangeably. As always when using identity labels, the best choice is the one with which the person in question self-identifies. transgender.
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Other Words From

  • trans·sex·u·al·i·ty [trans-sek-shoo-, al, -i-tee, -, seks, -yoo-]; trans·sex·u·al·ism noun
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Word History and Origins

Origin of transsexual1

First recorded in 1905–10, for an earlier sense; 1955–60 for the current senses; trans- + sexual, originally in transsexualism, coined in 1953 by German-American sexologist Harry Benjamin (1885–1986)
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Compare Meanings

How does transsexual compare to similar and commonly confused words? Explore the most common comparisons:

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Example Sentences

López has endorsed domestic partnerships for same-sex couples and has claimed he would hire a “transsexual” if they were the best person for the job.

And the media, meanwhile, has referred to her as every label under the sun, from “a man” to “transsexual.”

TSDating.com, a worldwide transsexual-dating site that is also used for escorts, has come in for special attention, said Bakeer.

With a little luck, you could become the first transsexual martyr!

The term “transsexual” tends to be used less often by younger generations of trans persons.

If a transsexual man as bearded, muscled, and tattooed as I am went into the ladies room, the women would all scream!

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