October 26: Intersex Awareness Day

October 26: Intersex Awareness Day October 26: Intersex Awareness Day

OHCHR estimates that between 0,05% and 1,7% of the population are intersex people

In 2003, October 26 was set as the Day of Intersexual Visibility. The first protest of this group is commemorated in 1996, during the annual conference of the American Academy of Pediatrics en Boston. It is estimated that between 0,05% and 1,7% of the population are intersex people, as stated in the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). Intersex people are born with sexual characteristics (including genitalia, gonads, and chromosome patterns) that do not conform to typical binary notions of male or female bodies.

En Spain are born around 400 intersex people a year. A figure very similar to the number of red-haired people. Human rights abuses against intersex people include, but are not limited to, infanticide, forced and coercive medical interventions, discrimination in education, sports, employment and other services, and lack of access to justice and remedies .

There is no single intersex anatomy

October 26: Intersex Awareness DayThere are up to forty different conditions diagnosed in the clinical setting. This variability in body composition is not always apparent at birth. However, it is revealed that intersexualities are not a pathology or a malformation.

The complexity of intersexuality is multiple. Being intersex is not a sexual orientation or identity, but a physical issue and they defend that there are as many types of intersex people as there are variations. For example, a person may be born with typically female genitalia, but have internal testicles and XY (typically male) chromosomes. Sometimes it is the case that the person has a genetic composition called "mosaic", that is, his cells have XXY chromosomes (male and female).

At other times, people may be born with a larger clitoris than is considered”normal” or a penis smaller than usual. Likewise, intersex people are also considered those who are born with congenital adrenal hyperplasia and syndromes such as Morris or Turner's.

The various surgeries and treatments intersex children undergo to “to correct” their sex and appearance are often irreversible and can lead to permanent sterility and lifelong pain; incontinence, loss of sexual sensitivity and psychological suffering.

In general, there is no medical reason to perform these procedures, which have many potentially serious negative effects in children. Carrying out these procedures without consent violates human rights. Intersex people should be able to decide for themselves whether or not to undergo such procedures when they are old enough to make their own informed decisions.

October 26: Intersex Awareness Day


Sources: The DirectnewtralIntersex Compass

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