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C4 The Gender Clinic - is there a thread?

(14 Posts)
taxcalculator Fri 18-Nov-16 00:24:47

I watched it yesterday and thought it was a very considered, revealing and insightful documentary. Looked forward to coming on Mumsnet and sharing thoughts but can't find a thread. I CAN'T believe no one is talking about it. Can anyone point me in the direction of a thread if there is one?

Rrross1ges Fri 18-Nov-16 09:12:58

I haven't seen a thread on Telly Addicts. There's a thread about transgender children on AIBU, which has descended in the usual way.

JustDanceAddict Fri 18-Nov-16 09:24:10

I'm watching it now in day off as someone mentioned it to me yesterday. Agree it's v insightful esp that a Majority of the children at the Tavistock have ASD.

taxcalculator Fri 18-Nov-16 18:15:57

Yes JustDanceAddict I thought that was an interesting aspect and how frustrating must that be for both parties when you, as a parent, are trying to communicate with the child to ascertain the best way forward. I felt for both parents. One thing that worried me was that Ash seemed to be very prematurely sexualised in general - the way she was getting made up to go to school at 8 years old and had talked about kissing a boy on the lips. This would have rung alarm bells with me. And she seemed quite detached when she was speaking (most times because she wasn't fully concentrating and was on her phone or tablet). She seemed seriously deluded about what would be possible for her as a transgender woman (an 8 year old talking about a womb transplant - is she surfing the net without supervision?) It really brought home to me just how difficult it must be to have these conversations with children when most children are blissfully ignorant of notions of their own 'sexuality'. I think both parents seemed to be being emotinonally held to ransom by the children, fearful of what would happen if they didn't go the hormone blocker route and terrifed of the impact of taking hormone blockers. No one wants to think they are pushing their child towards self-harm and suicide but I fear that for many of the children, other mental health issues are present which will make life difficult for them regardless.

Italiangreyhound Fri 18-Nov-16 18:18:28

I watched it and found it really well presented. I am normally quite cynical about some of the 'gender' related things on tv as they seem to be so full of stereotypes. However, this programme really struck me, in a good way.

It seemed clear both children were adored by their mums, even though poor Ash was being trying at times and her mum seemed to be struggling to do her best. In a curious way Matt was equally 'difficult' but by being so quiet and reflective, the mum probably didn't know quite what to think.

Yet both children shone in a really amazing way, a certain vitality despite being so different. Matt in company with class mates making jokes seemed to come out of himself.

I think the programme dealt with the issues very well.

The staff also seemed to be quite humble, I was expecting them to be more gung ho, in your face, but they just came across as very concerned.

I watched a previous channel 4 offering featuring Patty and George and found that quiue different.

I think we really saw the struggles of the parents in this, heard from the professips but the real 'stars' were these children who just seemed so norm in spite of carrying a very heavy burden.

taxcalculator Fri 18-Nov-16 18:31:42

Matt seemed to be a different child at school - you are right that he really seemed to come out of himself. I really hope they grow to be contented adults but both of them have quite a journey to complete. I really hope the parents will be at peace with whatever decisions they take on their children's behalf.

Italiangreyhound Fri 18-Nov-16 18:47:14

It is really making me question how much we can or should or should not decide on our children's behalf! There is a very wide gap between 8, which I think Ash is, and 13 which Matt is. We tend to think of adult then child but in reality children move from one to the other gradually through life, with quite big jumps at Bout 7 and 10 and then every couple of years I'd massive! I Don't know but somehow there is a bigger gap to me beyeen 13 and 14 than 13 and 15! If a child is seriously ill they have some autonomy in treatment as teens. Does that make sense?

Italiangreyhound Fri 18-Nov-16 18:53:56

Sorry typo, Matt was 12.

Italiangreyhound Fri 18-Nov-16 18:56:09

Typos again, a bigger gap between 12 and 14 th a. 13 and 15.

grannytomine Fri 18-Nov-16 19:03:26

I thought it was interesting but I did think Ash was rather inappropriate, boyfriends, kissing on the lips, what looked like quite alot of make up for school, worrying about boobs etc.

I also felt for the "boyfriend" who didn't know about Ash and if he is getting teased now. Not a nice thing for him either, I don't think I'd be very happy if I was his mum.

Italiangreyhound Fri 18-Nov-16 21:18:42

Totally agree granny. I totally agree about the kissing and the boy. The make up I think was partly a 'normal' possible 8 year old response for a girl in that area, my dd's school is pretty strict but some are not s maybe that she was less strict OR maybe for Ash it was so crucial to look female she was rather going to town.

Rrross1ges Sat 19-Nov-16 09:42:28

What it showed is how difficult it is for the parents; no one in their right mind wants a trans kid, it's a terrifically hard path to tread. The staff at the Tavi did an excellent job of showing that they will support families but won't intervene medically unless they truly believe it's in the child's best interests. I think there's a misapprehension that a boy will look at a Barbie and the parents will run to the nearest quack for a dose of hormones and a quick surgery fix. It isn't the case and most parents of trans kids tear themselves apart over what to do.

JustDanceAddict Sat 19-Nov-16 22:34:38

Totally agree re Ash. My thoughts exactly re make-up at 8, etc. - it was like she was compensating because biologically she is a boy. My DD is 14 and only worn make-up for a couple of years (although she's not very girly) and isn't very 'sexualised' at all.

Italiangreyhound Sun 20-Nov-16 01:45:49

Ross yes, that did come across. In other documentaries I've seen the parents have come across more 'composed'. This documentary had more raw emotion. I felt the parents wer e right to show that, I think it really came across.

I've always been sceptical about the idea of parents encouraging the children. It always comes across as very much from the children. That still doesn't dictate necessarily how a parent should react but it does say to me that the dysforia is being driven by the child usually. But I only know what I have seen on documentaries, and trans adults I'be spoken to.

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