Gender dysphoria is the phenomenon encountered by many struggling with their gender identity, where they feel that their physical features and assigned gender at birth do not match their gender identity. According to Psychology Today, it is estimated that about 0.005% to 0.014% of people assigned male at birth and 0.002% to 0.003% of people assigned female at birth are diagnosed with gender dysphoria.
One thing that makes gender dysphoria particularly difficult to conquer with is social dismissal, with many people thinking that it’s a simple insecurity “I feel like, insecurity is you just don’t like something because you think it’s ugly or hideous, whereas with gender dysphoria it’s more like it just isn’t me, this isn’t how I should look how I should sound, this isn’t how I should move, feel, or think. This doesn’t feel me,” she says.
Though she didn’t have a name for them yet, Gerhard first started experiencing these feelings in late elementary school. Throughout high school, she sought out assistance, including female hormones and emotional therapy to realign herself physically with her gender identity. “I’m a girl, and all that’s missing is transitioning,” she says.