14 Transabled People Who Actually Gave Themselves a Disability

The further we go into the 21st century, the more likely it is that we’ll discover new phobias, desires, and predilections with which to concern ourselves. Among these is the new wave of people who describe themselves as "transabled." You’re probably wondering “what is transabled?”

Even though the movement is just now gaining mainstream coverage, transablism has been studied since the early 20th century, when it was known as abasiophilia, then amputee identity disorder, body integrity identity disorder, and now finally transablism. The mental affliction forces its sufferers to feel emotionally disconnected from specific body parts (usually an arm or leg), and it drives people to want to amputate the appendage in any way possible. On this list we’re looking at stories of transabled people who cut off limbs.

Most often, the amputations are performed in a DIY surgical procedure that can be fatal to the person attempting to remove their limb. You’ve probably heard stories of people who wanted to go blind, or who tried to cut off their hands, and it can be confusing to people who don’t suffer from transablism. But just try to imagine living connected to a body part that you absolutely hate.

The research surrounding transablism puts it in a similar medical circle as body dysmorphia and anorexia, and unfortunately there’s no known treatment - although the people who chose to be disabled on this list seem perfectly happy after undergoing their specific procedures.

  • Miserable Man Finally Cuts Off His Leg

    In 2013, Matter Magazine released an interview with a man going by the name "David" who had tried multiple times to amputate his leg. He took to standing on his "good" leg, and trying to ignore the one that he wished he could get rid of. "It got to the point where I’d come into my house and just cry. I’d be looking at other people and seeing that they already have their lives going good for them. And I’m stuck here, all miserable." 

    After years of amputation attempts and subterfuge, aided by members of his transabled message board, David was able to have his leg safely and surgically removed. 
  • One Hand Jason

    A man who goes by the name of "One Hand Jason" spent months preparing to sever the hand from his body that never felt like it made sense. He ended up using a "very sharp power tool" to do the job and made sure that his friends and family thought it was an accident.

    He told ModBlog, “My goal was to get the job done with no hope of reconstruction or re-attachment, and I wanted some method that I could actually bring myself to do.”

  • This North Carolina Woman Blinded Herself

    This North Carolina Woman Blinded Herself
    Video: YouTube

    One of the most famous stories of someone making themselves disabled is that of Jewel Shuping, a woman who enlisted her psychologist to blind her with drain cleaner. “I really feel this is the way I was supposed to be born, that I should have been blind from birth,” Shuping told the Daily Mail. “When there’s nobody around you who feels the same way, you start to think that you’re crazy. But I don’t think I’m crazy, I just have a disorder.”

  • Man Removes Hand with Homemade Guillotine

    Some transabled people have a painful need to lose a limb. Mark Goddard, a man from Devon, England, was experiencing so much pain in his left hand that he built a homemade guillotine from an axe and fence post. Unfortunately, after the amputation of his hand, the pain in his arm lingered and he admits that he's now thinking about removing his entire arm
  • This Guy's DIY Leg Amputation Went Surprisingly Well

    This Guy's DIY Leg Amputation Went Surprisingly Well
    Photo: waitscm / flickr / CC-BY 2.0
    Over at Vice, a guy going under the pseudonym "John" describes what his life was like before and after amputating his left leg. On the morning of his DIY procedure, he admits to being nervous: "I just knew that somehow three dozen lead pellets would find their way through my leg. I was so nervous I almost threw up, but I knew it would give me the best chance to relieve my discomfort, so I counted to three. Later, when it was done, I was awash with relief. It was over and I was free."
  • Man Shoots His Leg Off

    In 2001, George Boyer finally succumbed to the desires of his BIID and used a shotgun to shoot himself in the left leg just above his knee. When he finally made it to the hospital he actually argued with doctors who wanted to replace his knee and managed to convince them to amputate his leg.