Trans people are right about themselves, and for over a decade well respected peer reviewed journals have been publishing MRI imaging studies that back them up. What these studies have found is that there are physical differences
in the brains of trans people that account for their experiences of their gender. Here are a few quotes from some of these studies and links to where you can read more:
“These data suggest a pattern (in male to female transsexuals) of activation away from the biological sex, occupying an intermediate position with predominantly female-like features”
The white matter in the brains of female-to-male transsexuals who have not yet begun hormone therapy mirrors the white matter in male brains rather than female brains. "It's the first time it has been shown that the brains of female-to-male transsexual people are masculinised," Guillamon says.
This study is particularly comprehensive:
From the abstract:
”Results revealed that regional gray matter variation in MTF transsexuals is more similar to the pattern found in men than in women. However, MTF transsexuals show a significantly larger volume of regional gray matter in the right putamen compared to men. These findings provide new evidence that transsexualism is associated with distinct cerebral pattern, which supports the assumption that brain anatomy plays a role in gender identity.”
From the results:
“For each of 22 significantly different regions (twelve within the right hemisphere and ten within the left hemisphere), cluster-specific box plots were generated to illustrate the magnitude and direction of gray matter volume differences between groups (see supplement 1 and 2). Altogether, females had the largest gray matter volumes in all but two significant clusters, which were located in the left and right putamen. Here, MTF transsexuals had the largest gray matter volumes (see Fig. 1). For the remaining clusters, MTF transsexuals had the smallest gray matter volumes, but their data spectrum largely overlapped with that of males.”
All of these studies examined the brains of trans* people who had completed puberty and who had not yet begun hormone therapy. And all of the studies found that the brains of their participants aligned not with their sex organs but rather with their stated gender. In other words, a male-to-female trans woman’s brain is physically structured in a way that is more similar to the brain of a cis (non-trans) woman than the brain of a cis man, despite the male hormones her brain has been exposed to. A trans woman’s brain, which dictates her gender, is physically feminine.
Current best practice for treating trans* children is to suppress puberty with GnRH analogues until the child is 16. (GnRH stands for gonadotropin-releasing hormone; gonadotropins are a family of hormones that regulate puberty and some reproductive functions.) At that point it becomes appropriate to treat with cross-sex hormone therapy in conjunction with the suppression of endogenous (self-produced) sex hormones. This treatment, in conjunction with allowing a child to present outwardly in accordance with his or her neurological gender (rather than forcing the child to present in accordance with his or her sex organs), alleviates a good deal of the child's gender dysmorphia and reduces the rate of attempted suicides in trans* minors from 45% down to around 7% (which is the average rate of attempted suicide in minors). Here’s a recent write up if anyone would like to read it: