Transgenderism is a relatively new term in the field of sexology, one meant to describe a variance falling at some point between transvestism and transsexualism. As such, it is a variance not yet accepted by all workers In the field. The male transgenderist identifies himself powerfully with the female gender. He may consistently cross-dress and assume the female role in his daily life, yet he does not wish to have the transsexual surgery that would transform him into a woman.
I was then free to live my life as I wanted having no more domestic or business responsibilities. I therefore crossed the gender line completely and I have lived as a woman full time ever since. I am therefore to be classified as a “transgenderist” now and no longer as an FP. But in so doing I did not forget what I learned as a boy and man. My masculine past is alive and well in the back of my head. I have my options back and the choice of what to experience or how to react to it is entirely up to me — I do not have to react in a masculine or in a feminine way nor do I have to be consistent between them.
When Virginia Prince was 81 years old, she said that she the thought she might have said the term “transgenderist” at a conference in 1974 or 75. We do, however, know that she first wrote the term in 1978. The earliest written usage I can find is the 1978 edition of McCary’s Human Sexuality and Prince’s 1978 usage.
Prince claims to have coined “transgenderism” to specifically refer to the “transgenderist” and this usage is reflected in the 1978 McCary’s Human Sexuality. (see Blending Genders, 1997, Ch 10, “Seventy Years in the Trenches of the Gender Wars – Virginia Prince“)
In 1977, Prince writes of three types of different types of trans experiences: “regular transvestite or femmiphile”; class two—those males who live as women openly and in society; and class three—those who undergo or who “seriously plan” sex change surgery. There’s no mention of “transgenderism,” “transgender,” “transgenderal” or “transgenderist.” She goes on to wrote: “People in class two know the difference (between sexual and genderal identity) and consciously elect to change their gender identity without surgery . . . Since class two people recognize the difference between sex and gender we can make a conscious decision to become a woman—a psycho-social gender creature.” (see “Woman by Choice or Woman by Default?”, Transvestia, V 15, N 89, pp. 77-89, 1977).
It should be noted that in the June 2, 1979 edition of the Radio Times states “It is estimated that about one person in 2,000 is a transgenderist¬someone who feels an overwhelming need either to dress in the clothes of the opposite gender, or . . . to `change sex’ completely.” Days later, on June 6th, Claire Raynor states on the BBC 4 radio show, Crossing Over “transgenderists, the rather clumsy label that has been devised to cover both transvestites and transsexuals.”