MYTH #4: Once surgery is better, we won t have to worry about intersex

When is it ever going to be OK to risk a baby’s future sexual function, fertility, and even life, just because her genitals force you to realize gender and sex aren’t simply dichotomies? Who are you to decide she wouldn’t be happy with the genitals she was born with?

If it is true that intersex cosmetic surgeries are getting better (and we lack the data to know), then why not let the intersexed person himself decide when, in his own opinion, the likely benefits to him of the surgery outweigh the burdens and risks to him of that surgery? Keep in mind, too, that surgeries designed to “correct” intersexed genitals will always, by definition, carry with them the message that intersex is shameful and bad. And we don’t think intersex is shameful or bad. Nevertheless, we keep running into Myth 3