transgender teen, also autistic?(9 Posts)
Hi. My son (who used to be my daughter) is 15. He always presents himself as male, is wanting to change his name and title to Mr at 16 and wants to start hormones soon, but I'm worried incase he regrets it. I know hormones will make him feel better about himself but I'm scared incase he can't deal with the changes, the testosterone changes are irreversible. I can't stop him from starting hormones at 16? But I don't know how to tell him to think about it either? Help?
Your enthusiasm for question marks is slightly confusing
Are you saying your son is diagnosed as having autism? Or are you wondering whether he might have autism?
It must feel as thought everything is moving very fast at the moment. I can understand why you feel worried
How far off is his 16th birthday?
He is diagnosed his birthday is in August. Still quite a while away.
So you have six months.
My knowledge of transgender teens is second hand, but I do know a lot about AS teens first hand . I wonder if you could get a one-on-one with his consultant and get some reassurance that his autism will be fully considered and discussed before setting timescales? Let him/her know how concerned you are and make sure typical teen-autism issues are really weighed up as part of the process.
He can't just start hormones as soon as he's 16, he would need in depth assessment from specialist and to fully understand all potential effects both physical and psychological
Thanks to PP for the interesting statistic, I've not heard that before
Caspar, once testosterone is started it is irreversible, in that the ovarian function will be affected, some more than others which is why the run up to having T therapy is much longer than for M>F as if the feminine hormones (oestrogen) are stopped the natural testosterone levels are quite quickly restored. Full fertilty is not guaranteed though.
(this is based on advice from Nottingham gender clinc)
I am sure there will be extensive psychological testing and discussion, but it might be worth flagging up to his consultant if it isn't already as they have to have an adult with them I believe if under 16.
There is a common misconception that in the UK hormones and life altering surgical procedures are handed out to anyone with dysphoria, but that is not the case. Many hoops have to be jumped through to assure the specialists that there is no underlying history of anything else Mental Health wise that needs addressing.
The key is getting your boy lots of counselling, encouraging discussion about all the possibilities, from staying physically a girl but presenting as a boy, dressing as one, right up to full hormones initially & then surgery at a (much much) later date. Also including a complete about turn later if he decides that's what he wants.
Some young teens are so confused about their feelings and the media is full of absolutely every possible life choice at the moment it's mind boggling. However keep up the lines of communication and loving support (even if you don't understand or agree with it!) is the key.
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