Yesterday a press release was put out by my personal injuries lawyer, Yme Drost, regarding the court's decision to have my legal gender changed from male to female. I got asked to translate the press release into English for the convenience of those who do not speak English. The original article and the associated links/materials such as the original court decision can be found at http://www.drost.nl/eindelijk-juridische-erkenning-voor-hermafrodiet/. It has also been made available at the Dutch news outlet ANP: http://www.perssupport.nl/apssite/permalink/63926.
Title: Finally legal recognition for hermaphrodite
NETHERLANDS - Maya Posch from Rijssen is relieved. Finally did she get the recognition she has been looking for during many years. The court in Alkmaar concluded this week that, although Maya will keep her male and female genitals, the registrar's office has to change her gender from male to female.
At first glance a rather unremarkable decision. Gender changes do occur more often in the Netherlands. This then happens for individuals who are transgender. They are convinced that they belong to the other sex, while they only have characteristics of one sex: male or female. After transgenders have obtained the irrefutable conviction that they belong to the other sex and, if medically and psychologically possible, have been adapted to that other sex, they can request a gender change via the courts at the registrar's office.
Initially it appeared that Maya Posch had to make that choice too. The multi-disciplinary team of the VU Medical Center in Amsterdam wanted, according to Maya, not acknowledge that Maya was possibly a hermaphrodite: a male and female egg which merged to form a single person, a person with both male and female sexual characteristics. This led to an identity crisis for Maya and even to suicide attempts. Ultimately Maya received help from a German physician who after examinations and (exploratory) surgery, confirmed the presence of both male and female reproductive organs in Maya's body. Maya turned out to be absolutely a hermaphrodite.
The Dutch Supreme Court considered in 2007 that erasing the gender in the birth certificate, without registering a sex in said certificate, wasn't possible for a hermaphrodite. The court in Alkmaar has duly considered the remarkable situation of Maya and came with a unique ruling. In this ruling the court follows up on the answers from April 18th 2011, from among others the Minister Van Bijsterveldt-Vlienthart (Education, Culture and Science), on earlier presented questions in the Second Chamber.
The court considers that the legal determination for changing the sex is only meant for transgenders, and therefore not relevant for Maya Posch. But, and this is the unique part of the ruling, by the registration of her birth as 'son of' an apparent mistake has been made, thus concludes the court. This apparent mistake hereby is that at the birth only the external sex characteristics of a male have been observed and not the at that point also present (hidden) female sex characteristics. The court determines that for Maya, who has the appearance of a woman, female dominance is present, which next to her maleness is part of her identity. It is therefore for Maya allowed, partially because she was made infertile, to keep her current male reproductive organs. The court then orders the change of the gender of Maya in the birth certificate from 'son' to 'daughter'. And with that there is finally legal recognition for the special identity of Maya Posch.
Maya Posch has meanwhile asked the Hengelonese personal injuries lawyer Yme Drost to represent her in making the VU Medical Center (VUMC) and others responsible for the identity crisis she ended up in. Drost will also start a medical disciplinary case against the physicians of the transgender team of the VUMC. According to Drost it should not again be allowed in the Netherlands that hermaphrodites do not receive medical recognition and thus end up in a severe identity crisis, with the possible harmful results.