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Woman B: I have a congenital Disorder/Difference of Sex Development (DSD) called pure gonadal dysgenesi, or Swyer Syndrome.I'm an intersex woman without fully functioning gonads, or sex glands.Person A: I don’t identify with the normal boy girl stereotypes because technically I’m something different. How old were you when you realized you were intersex? My mom started getting concerned that I had no period or breast development, so that was when the first doctor's appointment happened.Man A: I have an XXY chromosome set with Partial Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome, so that's two elements of intersex in one body. (Having no ovaries meant no estrogen or sex hormones to affect anything.I entertained thoughts that nature intended for me to be a boy and I questioned my gender identity.Woman C: The doctor who told my mom and me the news thought that I already knew of my diagnosis from another doctor I’d seen.I'd had vast pains in my stomach area, and after many examinations they realized I had a uterus, one ovary etc. If spotted at birth they would have assigned me female.
Man A: I was relieved that they had found my health problem and that I wasn't critically ill, but I was also confused and scared.
In the old days, they used to call people like me a "true hermaphrodite," but that is not the modern term. Their office didn't have expertise in intersexuality, so we consulted a prominent research endocrinologist about an hour away. I hadn't started my period, and every time I went to the doctor my mom or I asked about it.
So I play the role of male, knowing that I am biologically neither male nor female. After more physical exams and lab work, he charted Swyer Syndrome as the official diagnosis. Because my mom didn't start her period until she was 17, and because I was very active in school sports, they always told us that I was just a late bloomer, and not to worry about it.
I have one ovary, a uterus, and a vagina (via vaginaplasty and labiaplasty) behind my scrotum, but I also have a functional penis and one testicle. Let me tell you — the only thing more awkward than going through puberty is going through puberty.)Woman B: I found out two weeks after my 16th birthday.
I have no body hair, female skeleton, and I menstruate. Concerns over an absent period led my parents and I to seek answers at a nearby women's health center. We were told I had typically male chromosomes and no ovaries.