It seems more and more Transgender people are headed to Thailand for Gender Confirming Surgery.
The cost of the surgery is so much less than one would pay in the United States. The cost varies from doctor to doctor but it is about half as much in Thailand. The results have been reported as being satisfactory.
Even the air fare to Thailand is not that expensive relative to the travel expense incurred traveling half way across North America to Trinidad, CO for example.
Follow up care and complications are the major drawbacks for an American traveling to Thailand for surgery. One would have to travel and incur nearly as much expense for follow up care in North America making the concern moot.
1st transgender TV host Rose is now a woman
Arun Ram, TNN, May 2, 2010, 01.27am IST
CHENNAI: She has the name of a flower. Now she says she feels like a butterfly, able to spread her wings. Rose Venkatesan, India's first transgender television show host, has become the first prominent Indian to have sex-change surgery. Thirty-year-old Rose, who had sex reassignment surgery in Bangkok on March 18, will officially announce her new gender status on May 6, which she says will be her "first birthday".
"I feel like a butterfly," says Rose, on her return from Thailand, where plastic surgeon Dr Thep Vechavisit did a penile amputation and vaginoplasty. "It makes me so much more a woman," said Rose, whose public debut in February 2008 was on Vijay TV's talk show 'Ippadikku Rose'.
An engineering graduate who did a biomedical engineering course in the US, Rose was forced out of her home because her parents disapproved of her cross-dressing and "other girlie ways." But Rose took her "first steps towards womanhood" and faced the 'real life test' of living like a woman for two years before she was given female hormones. The so-called Harry Benjamin protocol says candidates for sex-change surgery must first pass this test.
Now Rose says ,"Thailand is the best place to get the sex change done. They do such a perfect job". But her trip to Thailand was not without problems. At Chennai airport, the sari-clad Rose was directed to the women's queue for frisking. "The immigration officials who knew me from my TV shows were very friendly, but those from the northern states, at the security check, were not. Seeing that my gender in the passport was mentioned as 'male,' a woman constable sent me to the men's queue. It was most humiliating. I protested. Later, a senior official intervened and let me pass, with the advice that I get my gender status on my passport changed," she says.
Rose travelled to Bangkok on her own as she didn't want even her parents to know about the operation till it was over. "My mom cried a lot, but now she has reconciled to the reality that I am a woman," she says.
So, what next? "I am working on a script for a movie I plan to make in English and Tamil. I will direct it and play the lead role. It's my story — a tale of a transgender's journey to womanhood," she says. But the woman who made headlines for wanting to be a woman says she is open to marriage but has no immediate plans to marry. "I am in a relationship with a man and I want it to develop into a committed one," she reveals.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Posted by De Sube at 5/02/2010 08:49:00 AM