Transsexual Toilet

With its spacious, tree-lined grounds and slightly threadbare classrooms, there is nothing obviously unusual about the Kampang Secondary School. It is situated in Thailand’s impoverished north-east, and most of the pupils are the children of farmers. Every morning at 8 they all gather outside to sing the national anthem and  watch the flag being raised. Then they have a chance to use the toilets, before heading off the first classes of the day. Kampang is proud of its toilets. Spotless, and surrounded by flowering tropical plants, they have won national awards for cleanliness. But there is something else about them too. Between the girls’ toilet and the boys’, there is one signposted with a half-man, half-woman figure. This is the transsexual toilet, and outside, in front of the mirrors, some decidedly girly-looking teenage boys preen their hair and apply face cream.

Whole article, video & photos [Found by Rimmer, thanks]


My first thought about that was “wow, that’s good, we won’t see that in western countries”. But there are some open questions… Isn’t the definition of transsexual that someone is male but born in a female body or vice versa? So it would be more consistent if these boys use the girls’ toilet. If I would see a sign like this on a toilet I would suppose it’s for both genders (that would be really progressive and cool) or for intersexuals but not for transgenders because transgender don’t mean you can’t decide or something but you have just the wrong body.  But maybe they just don’t care so much about definitions.  I just wonder what the female-to-male transgenders are supposed to do!?


7 thoughts on “Transsexual Toilet”

  1. it’s cool that the Thai culture is so progressed when it comes to these things. but i’m sure the west will catch up, albeit slowly.

  2. Bei den Olympischen Spielen in Peking wird’s sowas ähnliches geben: eine Toilette für Männer, eine für Frauen und eine für Kugelstoßerinnen.

  3. As a point of fact, there are multi-sex bathrooms in most clubs in the US that cater to a gay clientle and have been since back in the mid 90’s. I used to go to a club in New York that had several un-marked bathrooms that were shared by everyone.

  4. Oa etenéfha min da’du. Lé Nofal a rada mazé ferso fare’né!
    How progressive of them. The West has some work to do!

  5. The gay and lesbian community center in greenwich village (new york city) has unisex bathrooms. And some upscale restaurants that don’t necessarily cater to gay clientele have them too. I would prefer a “powder room” like the one in the video posted several days ago.

  6. Thai definitions of these things are not the same as western definitions. Some of these boys identify as female, some are gay. Thai society doesn’t always make a distinction. The numbers involved would suggest that Thai society has a higher incidence of both born that way than the west (unlikely), or that a certain amount of deliberate choice is involved. When one says they identify as female, it’s probably more correct to say that they identify as a ladyboy, regarded as a “third sex” in Thai society. Few ladyboys wish to live lives as if they were “normal” woman; they actually want to be extravagant, beautiful ladyboys.
    Thais are “tolerant” of all such gay and TG boys – “acceptance” would be an exaggeration. The typical Thai femme boy is ultra camp and very effeminate by western standards. Such boys mimic the “screaming queen” types in Thai soap operas, who are portrayed as the gay equivalent of mindless bimbos obsessed with the trivial. They are figures of fun to some extent, and Thais love fun (sanuk), even if it is at their own expense. So the tolerance comes at a price – they are not taken seriously.
    The notion of a “straight acting” gay is somewhat novel in Thailand. But there are men who have sex with men yet do not consider themselves gay (invariably tops) – “I am man” is the common statement.
    The number of gay and TG women is seemingly much smaller. Thai society is much less tolerant of gay women than men. However these also follow strict stereotypes – either “tom” (tomboy = looks much like a teenage boy) or “dee” (feminine acting woman).

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