Public Discourse 12 June 2017
Family First Comment: “Doctors currently have no way of predicting which gender dysphoric children will persist in their gender dysphoria, and yet they are pushing the minimum age for irreversible hormone therapy and surgery as low as possible.”
And in NZ also!!
Doctors currently have no way of predicting which gender dysphoric children will persist in their gender dysphoria, and yet they are pushing the minimum age for irreversible hormone therapy and surgery as low as possible.
According to the wisdom of the day, kids experiencing gender dysphoria need to be treated affirmingly as early—and as radically—as possible. For the time being, surgery and hormone therapy have to wait until age sixteen. But before that, adolescents can be prescribed puberty blockers, and even younger children are encouraged to transition “socially,” by adopting the name, dress, and mannerisms of their preferred gender.
All of this is in spite of the fact that gender dysphoria in children sees very low rates of persistence—ranging from 2.2% to 30% in males and from 12% to 50% in females, according to the DSM-5. As Dr. Kristina Olson, a research psychologist at the University of Washington, put it, “We just don’t have definitive data one way or another.” The truth is that no one can predict whether a gender dysphoric kid will feel the same way years later. That’s why Olson is leading a study of 300 trans kids that will track outcomes over twenty years. “To be able to, hopefully, answer which children should or should not transition,” she said. In the meantime, many of those children will be encouraged to go ahead and make life-altering medical decisions in light of scientific ignorance.
Standards Are Getting Looser, Not More Stringent
The standard medical and social response to gender dysphoria is to encourage and affirm the child’s self-diagnosis and to provide hormone therapies and unnecessary social and medical gender transitions without thoroughly exploring alternative effective treatment plans.
In fact, a team of international doctors affiliated with The Endocrine Society, the Pediatric Endocrine Society, and the World Professional Association of Transgender Health—all of which are held in esteem in this field of medicine—is rewriting treatment guidelines so that a medically induced gender change may be recommended for children even younger than sixteen. This represents a huge departure from what were already lenient guidelines for treating children who feel they are in the wrong gender.
Until now, the guidelines recommended giving preadolescent children puberty blockers to give more time to decide about going forward with more invasive treatment. But under the new guidelines, the more invasive treatment of cross-gender hormones will be recommended for children younger than age sixteen. Many physical effects of hormones, such as reduced bone density and reduced fertility, are irreversible. Other risks haven’t been studied at all.
READ MORE: http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2017/06/19512/