Intersex in the family series “Lena Lorenz”: ZDF marks Intersex Awareness Day

On the eve of International Intersex Awareness Day, the TV channel ZDF marked the occasion with a reference to the topic in the TV series “Lena Lorenz”. The day  is observed  every year on 26 October. The episode “Eindeutig uneindeutig” [“Clearly ambiguous”] in the series “Lena Lorenz” (90 min) is about the birth of an interchild with   partial androgen insensitivity (PAIS) and the questions this raises. The episode vividly depicts the pressure families can be put under to quickly assign children born with ambiguous genitals to the female or male sex. The enlightened physician, who is familiar with the new   medical guidelines, and the level-headed, caring midwife, Lena Lorenz, turn out to be a stroke of luck for the child and the parents and prove to be genuine role models.

“Normalising” surgical interventions without a clear medical reason (indication) are condemned and have been declared obsolete. However, the advice of both professionals is only hesitantly accepted by the family. In the end, it is the young brother of around 6 years of age who stands up for his sibling and brings his parents to their senses by showing them what is really important: accepting one another and loving one another just the way each person is.

In this episode, the falsely assumed duality of the sexes is called into question. Different points of view and conflicts are raised, for instance in statements like “Everyone always wants to be individual and special, and when it gets real, everyone has a problem with it”.

The film can still be viewed here in the ZDF media library up until 3 January 2019.