Ty, you're correct that Gurney's suggestion is a workaround rather than a more desirable real solution. It would be very nice, indeed, if we could realistically look forward to identifying a problem, figuring out the best solution, and then implementing it, but the unfortunate reality (of what those of us who have been here for a while realize) is that it is pure fantasy to expect that sort of result with any modicum of promptness.
The reasons are many - it takes time to figure out the optimal solution because this sort of thing becomes a community effort. WikiTree seeks input (here in G2G) from all interested members as to whether a problem needs to be addressed, and then how best to solve it. Then there is the software development piece. There are only 1 or 2 staff members who can do this and they are very overloaded with all the needs of this site, which has rapidly grown from startup to a major player on the international scene.
I'd just like to address one more thing you said - about having to provide deeply personal information in a way that is public in order to participate at all. That's not necessarily so. While you will be providing personal information to whatever extent you (and only you) choose, you also have the choice of privacy level for that information. If your profile has red privacy (click the Privacy tab on your profile to see the available levels and their definitions) then only people on your trusted list will see your gender, for example.
PS I am glad to see you here - I think it's the greatest thing when someone who has good reason to be reticent to expose something about themselves summons the courage to overcome that and simply be just like everyone else - we all have things about us that, in combination, make us unique - but, regardless of what those differences are, we are all human beings with equal stature wherever we choose to go.