I take “inner sense” to refer to body schema. Your mental model of your body either reflects your reality, or it’s missing a limb (Body Integrity Identity Disorder) or hasn’t integrated secondary sex characteristics (Gender Dysphoria, where people talk of the felt “wrongness” of having breasts, or express surprise at the deep timbre of their voice, if one “shouldn’t” have those characteristics then one must suppose themselves to be the opposite sex because there are only two sexes to choose from, after all). (Another example is when a limb is amputated but the schema fails to update, leading to phantom pain.)
This mind-body incongruence (maladaptive body schema) results from, at least partially, weakened activation in the network responsible for body schema and integration into self, as studies have shown. Thus a transabled person might feel they ought to be an amputee, and a man that he ought to be a woman. Altering their bodies can relieve this distress, as does people misperceiving them (or pretending to due to politeness or coercion) as disabled or the opposite sex, as how we see ourselves and others see us can be another source of distress if not aligned. (Which doesn’t give one the right to impose your personal brand of reality onto others.)
Of course, for BIID cognitive behavioural therapy is used while for gender dysphoria, even though “affirmative” surgeries don’t succeed in creating the sought after body completely unlike the clearly unethical amputation of a limb actually would, we’re happy for Big Pharma and the medical profession to make a killing off interventions which cause sexual dysfunction. Considering the risk of suicide is 19.1-fold greater after such a surgery compared with a matched control, I’d rate it as not effective, however much it is desired.
Perhaps science ought to concern itself with realigning mind and body instead of affirming faulty perceptions of reality, however logical their neurological cause, for reasons of compelled political correctness, and, of course, profiteering from human misery.
Body schema isn’t the whole picture, as many such (male) people with an identity disorder report a secondary paraphilic motive i.e. they are sexual aroused by the thought of being disabled, or of being perceived as female/having a female body. Sometimes this is the primary motive. With regards to gender dysphoria, some atypicalities in sexual differentiation of the brain, and also cerebral lateralisation have been found. And of course, not every transgender person has a mind-body incongruence, some have genders that sound more like labels for personality (“demigirl”) or mood (“genderfluid”) and claim that gender dysphoria shouldn’t be a requirement to be trans — draw your own conclusions.
What so-called “cisgendered” and “cisabled” people feel is nothing, because the absense of a condition is not notable.
Gender identity also reminds me a bit of Acquired Foreign Accent Syndrome. After brain damage, a Welsh woman might sound “Italian”…only not really, we just need a label for it and it sort of fits the bill. Hence, a man with gender dysphoria might label their feelings of identity as a “woman gender” and with a great deal of hubris, assume their subjective feelings (and adherence to certain gender stereotypes) are shared by actual women, with whom they need to share sports and changing rooms, apparently, while all the benefits of male puberty apply, and an identical pattern of male criminality is in effect.
That this is indulged is madness, as is the insistence we all contain a gendered essense that only be some grand coincidence aligns with sex in almost everyone.