Wednesday, 30 January 2013

VUmc Gender Team's Refutal Of The Accusations Made

A few months ago the VUmc hospital's gender team submitted their refutal to the disciplinary medical commission in Amsterdam in the case I started against four individuals of said gender team. I only recently read the whole document and to be honest it didn't surprise me a whole lot. Their whole stance can be summarized by them insisting that a) they made no errors in diagnosing me and b) that I am not intersex in any form or shape.

This is best illustrated in the conclusion attached to the refutal document, which I will put here in both Dutch (original) and English. See below.

--- Dutch original ---
"64. Alle verwijten die klaagster verweerders maakt zijn niet terecht en verweerders betwisten uitdrukkelijk zich aan enig tuchtrechtelijk verwijtbaar handelen jegens klaagster schuldig te hebben gemaakt.
Verweerders zijn zorgvuldig met de belangen van klaagster omgegaan, maar dat heeft klaagster niet gezien nu zij door verweerders vooral erkend wilde worden als interseksueel en verweerders aan die wens niet konden voldoen. Uit onderzoek was gebleken dat daarvan geen sprake was. Verweerders zijn in dat verband niet tot een lichtvaardige conclusie gekomen en behandelaars in andere (Nederlandse) ziekenhuizen tot wie klaagster zich had gewend, waren eveneens tot de conclusie gekomen dat klaagster alle kenmerken had van het mannelijk geslacht en geen kenmerken van het vrouwelijk geslacht (en dat klaagster daarmee niet interseksueel was). Dat prof. Seibel van en dr. Pottek in Duitsland kennelijk tot een andere conclusie zijn gekomen laat het zorgvuldig handelen van verweerders onverlet.

"65. Verweerders betreuren het dat klaagster ervoor gekozen heeft om de onderhavige tuchtklacht in te dienen. Zij hebben klaagster naar eer en geweten en volgens de professionele standaard begeleid en bijgestaan, maar kennelijk was dat voor klaagster niet voldoende."

--- English translation ---
"64. All complaints made by the plaintiff against the defendants are unjust and defendants deny explicitly to have performed any discipline-worthy actions against the plaintiff.
Defendants have carefully handled the interests of the plaintiff, but this was not seen by plaintiff now that she mostly wanted to be acknowledged as being intersex and defendants were unable to fulfill this wish. Based on examinations this was found to be absolutely not the case. Defendants in this case did not easily form their conclusion and medical personnel in other (Dutch) hospitals plaintiff asked, also came to the conclusion that the plaintiff has all of the characteristics of the male gender and no characteristics of the female gender (and that plaintiff wasn't intersex due to this). That Dr. Seibel and Dr. Pottek in Germany apparently came to another conclusion doesn't deny the careful approach of the defendants.

"65. Defendants regret that the plaintiff has chosen to file the current disciplinary complaint. They have treated and guided plaintiff to their best judgement and according to the professional standard, but apparently this wasn't sufficient for plaintiff."


I don't think that there's a whole lot more to add to this. They say that they were right, that I am biologically, genetically and in appearance a boy. That I supposedly had normally developed male genitalia, and a normal testosterone level for a male. As found out during the medical examinations in the Netherlands and Germany I never had functional testicles, and about 25% of the testosterone level of a male, a (closed off) vagina and a feminine skeleton.

This should hopefully mean that this will be an easy case, but my past experiences with the Dutch systems whether medical, political or otherwise have shown me that even the blindingly obvious sometimes isn't obvious enough. Whether through corruption or ignorance is left up for discussion. At any rate I'm very glad that I have pretty much the best lawyer for this area at my side. I wouldn't know what to do otherwise.

On February 12th the first closed hearing will take place in this case. After it the full investigation of this case should start, with hopefully a quick and positive conclusion. The public hearing(s) after this first closed one will hopefully be a popular destination for journalists, both foreign and national.


Thursday, 24 January 2013

Press Release: Upcoming Disciplinary Hearing Against Dutch Gender Team

After about eight years it appears that the tide is finally turning for Maya Posch. Her case at the disciplinary medical commission in Amsterdam against the VUmc hospital's gender team has its first hearing scheduled to take place on February 12th, 2013. At stake are the claims by Maya that the VUmc's gender team has failed to provide adequate diagnostics, in addition to systematically denying her basic human rights.

Maya was officially recognized as being a hermaphrodite - a type of intersex condition whereby both male and female genitals are present - in early 2012 by a Dutch court, after German clinics repeatedly had drawn this conclusion, first in late 2007. In early 2005 she went to the VUmc. They repeatedly told her that she had to be a transsexual - someone who wants to change their biological sex and with it their body. Maya only wanted to undergo examinations which would tell her exactly how her body was put together, yet this was constantly denied by the VUmc. A first MRI scan in Germany in 2007 showed that Maya has both male and female reproductive organs.

Born officially as a boy, Maya already had her first name changed in 2010 from her old name to the one she currently bears. This request to another court was granted on the basis that Maya's outward appearance is that of a woman, and not a man. A male name would therefore only cause problems. Similarly Maya desired to have her official gender changed from male to female, something which in the Netherlands is extremely hard. A provision in Dutch law aimed at intersex children who received forced genital surgery after birth and who later disagreed with the assigned sex, offered a possible way for Maya to accomplish this.

There were only two issues in the way of qualifying for this law: the first being that she had to have medical proof that she was not fertile as a male, and secondly the law only mentions children by whom the presence of ambiguous genitals was already present by birth. For Maya the female genitals were - and still are - hidden by skin.

To qualify, she had to go to Germany again as this procedure was not possible in the Netherlands. During surgery the testicles were removed and an exploratory surgery showed again that she was indeed a hermaphrodite. A biopsy of the testicles also revealed that she had never been fertile as a male to begin with. Her body produced no significant amount of testosterone either. After this she could file the legal gender change request in the Netherlands, which was soon approved.

Maya spent over eight years at the VUmc and other Dutch hospitals, trying to get answers. Including to why the conclusions drawn by Dutch and German physicians differed so completely. Now supported by Dutch personal damages expert Yme Drost, the VUmc's gender team is the first Dutch group of physicians and psychologists who will have to explain their behaviour towards Maya, and possibly many other intersex individuals as well.

A few years ago Maya has started her own website and blog where she keeps track of the happenings in her life, and collects relevant bits of information and evidence. You can find it at


Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Something More Mundane; Happiness And Sadness In Small Things

About a month ago my Android smartphone died and I tried to return it to T-Mobile Germany to have it repaired under warranty. Unfortunately T-Mobile showed that they utterly disregard their customers and I'm still stuck with a broken smartphone and useless warranty on it. I have contacted the European Customer Center (ECC) about this who will try to mediate in this case between T-Mobile Germany and me. Hopefully things will work out there. On a happier note, my girlfriend gave me her used phone: a Galaxy Nexus. As she just upgraded to a new phone due to extending her phone plan (yay for European carriers), this was most welcome. She had only owned it for a month herself as she got it as a brand-new replacement for the previous phone which had an unfortunate accident.

In the bus earlier today an old man sat down near us and started talking enthusiastically about this new tablet was that he got, how he was able to stay in contact with his daughter in South-America and others every single day so easily. For someone who must have been around 80 years old he seemed quite eager to use new technology. I thought it was a very positive thing. Definitely worth a few smiles.

My girlfriend and I went to go exchange a halogen light transformer for a working version at a DIY store. As the transformer's packaging had clearly been opened before we knew that the damage inside the unit had been caused by the previous owner, despite it being sold as 'new'. Exchanging it was no problem, just that we had to go pick it up at another location as the one we visited didn't have it in stock. Thus we traveled by bus to said next location and got it there no trouble. On the way back to the bus stop we saw a cat pawing wildly at a bird which was fluttering around on the snow near a hedge. Without a second thought my girlfriend jumped into the fray, chased the cat away and cradled the bird to her chest.

It was clear that the bird had been injured at its leg, with blood visible there on the lighter feathers in that area. We surmised that it'd probably be alright, so we decided to take it home. During the trip home which was by bus and foot the bird seems to calm down at first, but by the time we arrived at the apartment and took the elevator up we noticed that the bird had become very quiet. My girlfriend exclaimed worried that she thought it had breathed its last breath just then and there. Upon taking the bird into our place and putting it down we had to sadly conclude that it had indeed died. We are now waiting to bury it.

It's odd how quickly things can change like that. First we were happy we thought we could save this bird and already could see it fly off again to join other birds. Then gradually it became clear that the bird would not make it, until we had to accept this as a fact. Even though we didn't know this bird for longer than minutes its passing still had an impact on us. Even though we could not have done anything. Upon closer inspection it turned out that the bird had been mauled by the cat and likely sustained internal trauma due to this. Also one of its eyes had been damaged. The shock from the event combined with the stress kept it alive for a bit longer until its injuries became fatal.

We both watch quite a few of those animal cop shows on TV where they save injured and maltreated animals and we have a lot of respect for these people. No doubt they see a lot of animals die every day or week despite all of the care given to them.

Moving on, amidst all of the happenings (both sad and happy) there does seem to be a steady course towards calmer, happier weather. This and next month are still going to be a bit tough for both my girlfriend and I as many things either happen legally or hopefully will work out financially. My girlfriend should have her first name(s) changed to further complete the breaking with her former family, and I have the disciplinary hearing against one gender team which has made my life a living hell the past eight years and counting. Hopefully for both of us this will mean calmer times.

Regarding the hearing next month, I'm currently working on notifying media channels and bloggers around the world about it and the general case so that they will hopefully start carrying news about this matter as well. It's about time us intersex individuals can stop being forced to distinguish us and can finally blend into the wide variety of shapes and colours offered by humanity. There's so much more than black and white.

I'll be publishing a press release on the hearing soon and will continue to do so over the coming months as the case proceeds.


Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Fair Play... Or Not

If my life was a sports match, it'd be me on one side of the field, with the rest of my team mates huddled together at the edge of the field, too traumatized to even participate any more. The opponents would keep shifting faces, but it'd always be the same ones I see in my nightmares. There'd be Jos Megens, coordinator of the VUmc's gender team, whose false laugh and pretense of friendliness frighten me. There'd be Dr. P.T. Cohen-Kettenis, the psychologist who contributed to the Consensus on Management of Intersex Disorders, a 2006 document by 'physicians' and 'psychologists' world-wide on how to best eradicate intersex from the world. She's also the one who dismissed me as a possible intersex case.

She's part of the same VUmc gender team together with Dr. W. de Ronde (endocrinologist), Dr. M.A.A. van Trotsenburg (gynaecologist) and Dr. J.H.T.M. van Waesberghe (radiologist). The first one thought I was a 'feminine looking boy' and threw into my face his conclusion that any further medical examinations would be 'fruitless'. The second one abused me both physically and psychologically by faking a physical examination and then dismissing anything I knew about myself by insisting that I could not be intersex in any way or form. The third one insisted over and over again that no female reproductive organs and a regular prostate were visible on the MRI scans produced in Germany, despite these being clearly visible.

Also in the enemy team are the Dutch minister of health: Edith Schippers. Her letter to me in response to my frantic request to help me with my desperate medical situation essentially dismissed the possibility that the Dutch physicians had done anything untoward to me. She said that by following the aforementioned 'Consensus on Management of Intersex Disorders' to the letters, they were doing only the right things. She kicked on my fingers I had on the edge of the pool and had me slide back in to resume drowning.

Adding to the enemy team are the so-called 'intersex organizations'. Whatever they call themselves, OII, ILGA, ISNA, Accord Alliance... they are all the same. Never helping individuals, just giving them false hope and dining with politicians while pretending to advance the rights of intersex individuals. They caused me almost as much pain and agony as Dutch physicians and the like through false hope, deception and statements made by them dismissing me as a less than desirable existence. They're about as evil as the insurance companies I had to deal with, such as my current one, Unive. Refusing to grant me the same rights as 'normal' people, they feel it's perfectly fine to discriminate against me. SKGZ and CVZ both think this is perfectly fine as well, handily kicking me down a bit further.

On the sidelines of the field there are plenty of supporters for both sides. My side's supporters are pretty outspoken, but they're only supporters. Not supposed to be on the field. Not part of the team. It's just me, standing there in the drenching rain, facing this black mass of evil. I wish all this vile evil and its supporters would just vanish from this planet forever. I do not think I can keep living in a world where their existence would be tolerated.

Next month, the 12th of February I'll be sitting together with my lawyer Yme Drost in the courthouse in Amsterdam at the public hearing against the VUmc's gender team. The claims against them are improper diagnostics and violation of basic human rights. My hope is that this hearing, or maybe I should say match, will mean the turning point in the War on Intersex which has been raging since the 1950s, if not earlier. Maybe one day soon I'll be able to say farewell to this horrific fear I have inside of me that this evil will win out and my life will be denied over and over.

This all comes on top of the more regular forms of misery. I quit my last job at the VARA because I got a burn-out. The impossible demands put on me and the game of masks and pretense within Dutch companies is just too much. I'm now back to working as a freelancer and trying to make money by selling products via my company, Nyanko. We'll be releasing our first major Windows game soon, and I'm always looking for paid projects to work on. I find that by having the full responsibility it is quite stressful at least now that I have a very low income with the possibility of losing everything, including the place I'm renting. Putting the full weight of supporting us financially on my girlfriend's shoulders would be very unfair as well since she is hardly rich as well. If the financial part could be sorted, however, I am sure I'd be very happy to be working in this capacity. I enjoy organizing projects, developed even more dislike against 'project managers' at my last job, and am more than prepared to put in the work and hours to make things happen.

I'd be lying if I said that I wasn't feeling depressed and somewhat suicidal at times. It's hard not to curse my body for being like this. It's nearly impossible not to curse society for being the way it is. All that keeps me going is the thought that maybe, just maybe the coming months my body doesn't have to be a problem any more and I'll be happily doing the work I'm good at.

And after that, the move to a better country. Coincidentally this was also the first question I got asked by the journalist for The Holland Times - an expat magazine - a brief while ago: which countries I'd prefer to move to. To that I answered Australia, South-Korea, Germany, but basically countries with better human rights than the Netherlands. The resulting article of the interview will be published in The Holland Times in late February or March. Maybe it'll trigger a few things. I know that few things would make me and my girlfriend happier than to leave this dark, gloomy country which feels it's okay to abuse everyone who isn't perfectly 'normal'.

Feel free to throw in a few cents via a donation on my main site towards the 'keeping this kitten happy' fund :)


Monday, 7 January 2013

To Those Who Hurt Intersex People Like Me

I posted this earlier on both my Google+ and Facebook accounts. I have made a few additions to the original post.


I was born a hermaphrodite, but didn't find out about this until age 21. At that point I realized that I wasn't a boy, had never been a boy and my intense psychological issues were due to not having been able to form a self-image.

I was raised as a boy, more or less, yet when I found out about my unusual physiology I decided to go the female route based upon how I had felt in the past. Upon encountering various gender teams here in the Netherlands I was severely traumatized. They just wanted to start chopping me up and completely make me give up on being intersex. They'd 'make a beautiful woman out of me'.

I just wanted to be examined, learn how my body was put together and decide on what organs I'd keep based upon that. Instead I got subjected to over 6 years of constant harassment and psychological torture as Dutch psychologists and physicians attempted to brainwash me into believing that I was transsexual, not intersex. That I was just a feminine-looking boy. At this point I have spent over 8 years in this hell with no end in sight.

They ignored MRI evidence from a German private clinic that I was a hermaphrodite. They faked genetic tests. They ruined almost a decade worth of what should have been the best years of my life as I finally knew what was going on with me. I'm now sitting at home with severe PTSD and other psychological traumas. A disciplinary legal case has been started against the Netherlands' biggest gender team at the VUmc hospital in Amsterdam.

One of the people at that gender team, Cohen-Kettenis, is supposedly an intersex expert. She was involved in setting up the one protocol describing how medical professionals should treat intersex cases ( This protocol is extremely clear: intersex children are very inconvenient and should immediately have their IS traces eradicated. There's no mention of what would be best for the IS child itself.

I have seen the results of this too many times already. In my own situation, but also with others. From hermaphrodites who had a whole side of their organs removed as a child followed by forced testosterone injections, to wrong decisions on which gender to pick and the child, once an adult, having to transition to the body they should have had and could have had right from the beginning. This entails the physical mutilation and destruction of our organs, bodies and genitals.

If only people would listen to IS people like us. Instead intersex is one of the last major taboos. We're not supposed to exist. The whole medical system world-wide is focused on eradicating every single IS individual. Our opinion, our wish to just be ourselves is met with ridicule, or ignored. We're brainwashed and forced into surgery against our will, if we're even old enough to decide already.

Infants should NEVER undergo genital surgery in order to 'pick' a gender. Medical surgeries are needed, but a gender is a personal choice, and thus only the child can decide. Not the physician, not the parents. No bloody one else. Only the child.

Won't somebody finally start thinking of the IS children? We have souls too...