The Gendered Self--
Further commentary on the transsexual phenomenon

by Anne Vitale Ph.D.


By Aaron Devor FSSS, FSTLHE

I enjoyed learning more about your perspectives on transsexualism. I thought that it was very nice the way that you took a stages-of-life perspective. I also liked your down-to-earth approach.

By Hugh McInnis

Hugh McInnis reviewed The Gendered Self Further commentary on the transsexual phenomenon Transsexual Phenomenon July 31, 2013 -- Very informative and very well written and organized by the author. I recommended [the] book to some friends. The content was very accurate in many ways.

By Heather J. Lubinsky

Heather J. Lubinsky "Lady Heather Cassandra" reviewed The Gendered Self Further commentary on the transsexual phenomenon Thought Provking Read August 17, 2012.-- I read this with someone who is a transsexual and it allowed me to have an open dialog and learn so much more about them. I was so impressed with how the author explained things. Despite my extensive knowledge from knowing transsexuals, I was able to learn so much and more importantly have the opportunity to have an open dialog with a transsexual on how their experience was.

By Barbara Ann Fitzpatrick

This is probably the best book on the "Transsexual Phenomenon" that I have read, (And as a 20+ year post op male to female transsexual, I am conversant with the literature). Dr.Vitale has written a book that not only offers a clear, and understandable introduction to individuals not familiar with this phenomenon (with very clear definitions of terms that can be confusing in the literature, and completely misused in mainstream media),but also the most penetrating and in depth discussion of the vicissitudes of living as a transindividual,long after transition and reasonable acceptance in ones desired gender has been achieved Dr.Vitale's book informed both by extensive clinical experience, as well as her own experiences as a transsexual person is definitely a signal addition to the literature on this issue. Well done.

By Lawrence M. Tunis, Ed.D., LMFT

Powerful and fast paced!

“The Gendered Self” is a powerful and fast paced look at what is quickly becoming known in the mental health and gender community as Gender Expression Deprivation Anxiety Disorder (GEDAD). The author, Anne Vitale, Ph.D., herself both a talented writer and an expert in the field, has counseled over 500 gender variant clients during a quarter century of private practice in the field.

Dr. Vitale’s writings are apt to provide a breath of spring for those dealing with what has been more commonly known by the deeply pathologizing label of Gender Identity Disorder. Her book is written in a factual, no-nonsense, yet compassionate and understanding tone by a person who has “walked the walk” herself and understands that transgender ideation is a “client-centered” issue. She makes the point that the therapist would do well to have the client be clear on what are the best possible choices to make, rather than the therapist inflecting her or his own opinions, prejudices and judgments upon the client.

In the face of one of the most difficult of the psychological issues for society to understand and accept, Dr. Vitale has penned a wonderfully "normalizing" work. She is of the view that gender concerns in general are really the result of the societal construct of an artificially created bi-gendered system, nurtured by religious beliefs and a paternalistic society. As such, it is not really an issue that gender variant individuals, those dispersed randomly throughout nature’s normal gender continuum, should have to suffer needlessly about.

The reader will find that there is a great deal of new information presented in this work, a book that reads with the speed and interest of a well-written novel. Not since Mildred Brown and Chloe Rounsley’s "True Selves," has there been a volume that explains the transgender phenomenon in so thoroughly readable a manner. However, whereas the 1996 "True Selves" was geared more toward neophyte transgender individuals entering in to the process of exploring their own gender identity issues, "The Gendered Self" comes from a much more sophisticated and updated place, taking into account the decade and one-half since the publication of the Brown and Rounsley book, along with a growing knowledge base, the availability of the internet as a sweeping form of communication medium and the much enhanced sophistication of interested readers.

“The Gendered Self” stands as a work that gender specialists and interested parties alike will find to be academically sound in terms of the presentation of theories, history, case studies, therapy direction, gender role options, medication and a myriad of other areas important for counselors and interested individuals to know and to keep in mind. Because Dr. Vitale does not see the transgender issue per se as a disorder, she makes the point that there are no cures, but it is clear that there are many ways to deal with GEDAD. In so doing, Dr. Vitale offers a thorough review of available permutations and possibilities.

Whether you're a therapist or a GEDAD sufferer, you will find pearls of wisdom in Dr. Vitale’s book about this little-understood, but deeply troubling condition.

Lawrence M. Tunis, Ed.D., LMFT, is a San Anselmo, CA based clinician in private practice. His web site is and he can be contacted at