In India, as in many other parts of the world, the transgender community encompasses a diverse range of identities and experiences. It’s important to note that gender identity is a deeply personal and individual experience, and individuals may identify themselves in various ways within the transgender spectrum.
Here are some commonly recognized transgender identities in India:
⦁ Hijra: Hijras are a recognized transgender community in India, often referred to as a “third gender.” They have a long-standing presence in Indian society and are recognized legally as a separate gender category. Hijras may be assigned male at birth but identify and live as women, or they may identify outside the binary male/female system.
⦁ Kinnar: Kinnar is another term used to describe transgender individuals in certain regions of India, particularly in North India. Like Hijras, Kinnars may have a gender identity that falls outside the male/female binary.
⦁ Transgender Women (MTF): Transgender women, or Male-to-Female (MTF) individuals, are assigned male at birth but identify and live as women. They may undergo various forms of gender-affirming medical treatments or procedures such as hormone therapy, voice training, and gender confirmation surgeries.
⦁ Transgender Men (FTM): Transgender men, or Female-to-Male (FTM) individuals, are assigned female at birth but identify and live as men. They may also undergo hormone therapy, chest surgery (such as mastectomy), and other gender-affirming procedures.
⦁ Non-Binary: Non-binary individuals are those who do not exclusively identify as either male or female. They may identify as a mix of genders, outside the gender binary, or with a gender identity that is fluid or changes over time.
It’s important to remember that gender identity is unique to each individual, and there is a wide range of diverse experiences and identities within the transgender community. It’s always respectful and considerate to use individuals’ self-identified terms and pronouns to honor their gender identity.