Sex Change


Sex Change in AQ?

I received an interesting Comment to the article Legal Name Change.

Thanks for this great article. A related issue I’ve been trying to figure out relates to when someone not only changes their name, but also their sex. Is there *any* way to handle this in AQ. (I haven’t found a way.)

The answer to your question is both simple and complex. From a software point of view, changing the gender of an individual is as simple as editing the record and clicking a different radio button. If the record is linked to a marriage record as the husband or as the wife, the gender radio buttons are grayed out, and you can not make the change. If the individual is not linked to a marriage record as the husband or the wife the radio buttons are active, and the change can be made. That’s the simple answer. The more complex answer is needed if there was a marriage and a subsequent sex change. I am not aware of any genealogical standards which define how that situation should be handled, so we seem to be breaking new ground. Here is one possible solution. In the record which shows the birth gender, show the Legal Name Change. Create a record (a new individual) with the new gender and the new name, and show the same Legal Name Change. Now marry the two records so that they will always be linked together. Create an Other Event called Sex Change where you show a date, a place, and the beginning and ending genders. Add this Other Event to both records. I know that no genealogical purists would accept this, but I also know that AQ will not handle a sex change for a married person, so “Ve duz vat ve kan duz.”

For this lesson, we will create a new AQ file and start with only one individual.


Victor is a male.


We will add the Other Event called Legal Name Change.


We will add the new name, and let the old name be entered by default.


We need to create the Other Event called Sex Change.

When I went back and looked at the Legal Name Change article, I saw that my blogging software, WordPress, removes what it thinks is invalid HTML code, so the Sentence Usage codes were wrong. I was trying to make them cut and paste-able, but WordPress will not let me do that. Fortunately, the codes for the Sex Change sentence fit on one line, so there is no question about whether there is a space between the first line and the second line.


We add the Sex Change to Victor’s record.


The date we entered places this Other Event into the right chronological order.


Now we will create the female version, Victoria.


Both records now exist.


We now add the Sex Change to Victoria.


Be sure that the information here is the same as what you entered for Victor.


Now we add the Legal Name Change.


This needs to be the same as the one we did for Victor. Notice that since this is Victoria’s record, we can not leave the second Description blank, and let AQ provide the default name.


Now they both show the important info.


Now we marry  Victor/Victoria. Since Victor is already in our file, we search for his record instead of creating him again.


We know that his RIN is 1.


The date and place for the ‘marriage’ will be the same as for the Sex Change. I chose to select Not Married and No Children. I will also add a marriage note.


This makes it clear that there is no real marriage. It also explains that we are using a marriage record to keep the records for Victor and Victoria easily accessible.


Here is the Family view…


and this is the Family Group Record.

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