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Gender Identity Development

Gender identity is one’s sense of having masculine or feminine traits—one’s personal experience of feeling like a male or a female regardless of one’s biological sex. For the majority of individuals, the gender identity they develop corresponds with their biologically determined sex. Of course, males can feel some degree of femininity and females can associate with some masculine traits; however, for most, males feel masculine and females feel feminine. A minority of individuals feel strongly toward both masculinity and femininity (i.e., androgynous) or identify opposite of their biological sex.

Gender identity makes up one piece of the self and contributes to one’s overall identity. How one identifies relates to his or her psychological adjustment from middle childhood through adulthood. The development of gender identity begins prenatally ...

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