- A transgender man who had hormone therapy but did not pursue sex reassignment surgery gave birth to a baby, stirring a debate regarding existing laws on infertility as a prerequisite for gender change.
- On hormone therapy for years, he transitioned from female to male and legally changed his gender three years ago.
- However, he chose to cancel his decision to undergo gender-affirming procedures and instead decided to try getting pregnant with his husband.
Controversy follows the announcement of a transgender man in Finland who was reported to have given birth, a first in the country that required sterilization for people who wanted to transition to a gender other than the one assigned at birth.
According to transgender top stories by The Straits Times on April 5, a transgender man who had hormone therapy but did not pursue sex reassignment surgery gave birth to a baby, stirring a debate regarding existing laws on infertility as a prerequisite for gender change.
“The baby weighed nearly four kilograms and was 53 centimeters in length (at birth),” Lannen Media reported.
The identity of the trans man was kept a secret in order to protect the family.
Furthermore, the man, who was described to be in his early 30’s, was on hormone therapy for years, taking testosterone. He transitioned from female to male and legally changed his gender three years ago.
However, he chose to cancel his decision to undergo gender-affirming procedures and instead decided to try getting pregnant with his husband.
State laws on infertility
Human rights organizations had criticized Finland, the only Nordic country that forced transgender applicants to be infertile before granting legal gender recognition.
Existing laws required transgender individuals to present a proof that they are sterile so that they could change their gender legally.
However, medical teams in the country had routinely practiced declaring infertility on patients on hormone therapy for a prolonged period of time.
Sometimes, fertility can resume when therapy is suspended. The man did just that and his period returned after a year.
He said, “Do I want the society to dictate what I can do with my body and my life? Nothing can stop me. I’m a free man.”
Authorities had offered the man a full-length paternity leave. The doctors were not sure how his therapy would have affected the pregnancy. However, everything went normal although the delivery was overdue.
“The last couple of weeks were quite painful and I began to run out of patience. But the birth itself went really well,” the man said. Not disclosing the gender of the child, he said he intended to be called daddy.
Together with his husband, who refused to be identified either as male or female, he said they would raise their child in a gender-neutral environment.
While rare, pregnancies among transgender people have been documented. Thomas Beatie, a transgender man in the United States who underwent gender realignment surgery, successfully delivered a baby girl.
Legally recognized as male, Beatie chose to keep her female reproductive system when she was taking testosterone treatment and undergoing chest reconstruction. She gave birth to two more children in the next two years.