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Keywords:

  • female-to-male type;
  • gender difference;
  • gender identity disorder;
  • male-to-female type;
  • stress-coping

Aims:  Previous research has not addressed gender differences in coping strategies among patients with gender identity disorder (GID). Nor has the relationship of coping strategies to other demographic characteristics ever been clarified in GID. In this study, we tried to clarify the relationship between stress-coping strategies and demographic characteristics among patients with GID.

Methods:  The coping strategies of 344 patients with GID [227 female-to-male (FTM) and 117 male-to-female (MTF)] were assessed using the Japanese version of the Ways of Coping Questionnaires, Lazarus Stress-coping Inventory.

Results:  Comparison of the stress-coping inventory between MTF and FTM GID patients revealed that FTM GID patients were significantly more reliant on positive reappraisal strategies in stressful situations than MTF GID patients (P = 0.007).

Conclusions:  The difference in the usage of positive reappraisal strategies between MTF and FTM type GID patients was not explained by other demographic characteristics, and we suppose that the gender difference in GID patients might influence the usage of positive reappraisal strategies. The ratio of FTM GID patients might be higher at our center because MTF GID patients can obtain vaginoplasty easily, whereas phalloplasty surgery for FTM GID patients is performed at only a few centers, including our clinic, in Japan. As a result, more FTM GID patients come to our clinic with a clear intention to undergo sexual rearrangement surgery, which might influence the gender difference in using positive reappraisal.