Motives for transing children.(16 Posts)
Article about transing children as young as 3 years old.
I thought it was particularly interesting that the conservative Christian family only took transing their child seriously after he questioned if he was gay.
Also of note, the two approaches trialled in 'curing' gender dysphoria in children was either: A) persuading them back into their sociatally enforced gender role or B) fully socially transing them with possible puberty blockers.
No in between. What's wrong with just letting them do what they want and present as they please?
I feel very sorry for Nicole from the article. That child has clearly suffered hugely.
The whole thing baffles me. Gender is a made up thing. Why does liking pink and dolls make a boy into a girl? I can't get my head round it. And there must be something in the fact it's more prevalent in conservative countries/families.
I don't think it is a coincidence at all that countries with either a long history of a "third gender" or a large percentage of transmen and transwomen are also the most anti-gay
Great, so we are just like Iran now, trans any child who might be gay.
It's like our society just can't compute gender non-conforming boys. It just doesn't work as a "no biggie" concept.
Why would a gnc boy ever have to wear "boys clothes" if he didn't want to? Why would he ever have to play with trucks?
What sort of pressure to be "a real girl" or "a real boy" but never this abomination that is a boy in girls clothes playing with girls toys is put upon gnc boys and how does this affect their consistence-persistence-insistence?
If we can't imagine a boy happily going through his day to day life as feminine as he likes, wearing what he likes, doing what he likes, how can we expect these boys to imagine it?
We don't even have a word in the English language for it (cf tomboy).
Until this skewing of experience is fixed, I can't see how we can reliably say whether these boys are saying they actually believe they are girls, or are just trying to express their preferences in the only language they have available to them.
I think this trans trend is entirely driven by homophobia.
It's far, far better for your child to have a medical condition than be gay (not in my opinion, obviously!)
I agree an awful lot of it is homophobic. I also think what we used to think of as transsexuals who did want to present differently and get in with their lives still exist but have been engulfed by this bizarre movement spearheaded by misogynistic, homophobic men.
Definitely homophobia, and also misogyny.
I think we also have to look at the agenda of late transitioners. Some of them now wish they had transitioned earlier in life in order to pass better. Some of them badly want to get scientific proof of a "born this way" gender identity (ie female brain in male body) so that acceptance can be driven forward in the same way as has been done for gay rights. Those voices are very powerful and are getting a lot of space and time in the media.
(as an aside, I also don't find the "born this way" narrative of homosexuality either persuasive or necessary. It's been a good way of expanding rights and acceptance of gay people, but for me it's not necessary that being gay is inborn or inevitable for me to feel positively about it. Many of my gay friends are also up in arms about the same methodology being used for the trans cause because it now threatens to drive them backwards in the sense of gay men having "female" brains and gay women having "male" brains, which is pretty regressive. Anyhoo, I digress).
So nervous, worried parents with GNC children are being told that they are trans. It's attractive because it's easy - oh, right, my boy has a girl's brain. I get it. It's attractive to liberal, concerned types of parents because it's an opportunity to virtue signal what a great parent you are - look, I'm so wonderfully accepting of my child, aren't I a great parent? (sorry, that does come off harsh, but I do see this). It's attractive to conservative parents because they'd really rather not have a gay child, thanks very much. Some are being terrified into it by being told that their trans child WILL KILL THEMSELVES if everyone around them does not agree that their gender non conformity means that they were born in the wrong body.
And I think there can be darker motives. I look at the mothers who insist that their 18 month olds are trans because they grabbed a pink blanket and I think that being gender non conforming is frankly the least of that child's worries. Gender disappointment? Munchhausens? I hasten to add that I think this is rare, and the vast, VAST majority of parents are only trying to do their best by their children.
So much to unpack here, isn't there?
But I should say that mostly I think parents and children are scared. We live in a scary world and they want acceptance, and help, and to be able to live their lives, and it seems like a solution is at hand. I don't blame them. But I do want to challenge what they're being told because I think it's at risk of causing far greater harm than what it seeks to address.
I find the idea that a 3 year old has a 'hard wired concept' of 'gender' just bonkers. I have a 3 year old, and he's just about figured out basic biological sex differences. What does having a hard wired concept of gender even mean? It's lunacy- and so improbably binary. DS1 likes pink and pretends to breastfeed his favourite stuffed toy. He also loves trains and tractors. My friend's DD of the same age likes to play with trains while wearing her Elsa dress. If gender is hard wired presumably they are both suffering gender confusion?
I'm sure most parents are trying to do the best thing for their children but it's hard to escape the conclusion that there is some very deep rooted societal misogyny and homophobia at work.
One thing has always puzzled me which is mentioned in the article- why is the approach of saying 'we should help trans kids come to terms with their biological sex' likened to gay conversion therapy. Surely it's the opposite? Conversion therapy is about changing someone's sexual orientation- rather than accepting it; therapy for trans kids suggests that they should be helped to accept their biological sex, rather than trying to change it.
Sorry- random collection of disparate points!
"Conversion therapy is about changing someone's sexual orientation- rather than accepting it; therapy for trans kids suggests that they should be helped to accept their biological sex, rather than trying to change it."
Indeed. The proper analogy, surely, should be between gay people who aren't okay about being gay, having therapy to enable them to better get in touch with the reality of their style of attraction, and people who aren't okay with their actual bodily sex, having therapy to try and get them better in touch with their bodily reality.
Given the effect of hormones on the brain (other thread), the analogy there, surely would be hormones given to trans folk to make them happier, compared to all the hormonal and surgical nonsense they used to try on gay people to make them happier by turning them straight. After all, Alan Turing was forced to endure chemical castration. And earlier we have:
"In the 1920s, mainstream medical researchers in Germany implanted testicles from corpses into the bodies of homosexual men, usually without their knowledge. The idea was to boost testosterone levels."
If people knew their gay history, they'd perhaps be a bit more sceptical about another hormonal or surgical 'cure'...........
This article is so sad. The child was exposed to drugs in utero , then rejected by her birth family and then by her first adoptive family for being the wrong race .
Then adopted by a white family , who seem to have had no training or support around all these complex issues . Then her private struggles have been posted all over social media .
Gee I wonder why this kid has identity problems.
I know a lot of people, when faced with a challenging situation, feel the need to fix the "problem". They have to do something active.
In the case of a very young gnc child, acceptance is simply too passive. It looks and feels like you are doing nothing...and it requires the parent to change their own perspective. It must feel a lot simpler to not try and change your perspective and to change your child instead. Much simpler to explain to the wider family that you are doing everything you can rather than doing...well, not a lot. And when there are medical people confirming that action is required...well the choice is obvious.
My main issue with the whole thing is the gender issue. I am a woman. I have female reproductive organs and chromosomes.
But I rarely wear makeup. I live in jeans and trainers. I prefer science fiction and thrillers to soaps and 'chick flicks' (hate that term but ykwim). When I worked it was in sales and I was an aggressive and capable saleswoman. I have no interest in housework or high heels and my husband is a far more nurturing parent than me.
I spent my entire childhood and early teens with very short hair and spent my time riding bikes and climbing trees.
Basically I don't perform femininity in any meaningful 'gender' based way. But I am most definitely a woman.
It bothers me that there is no room for this now. Rather than moving forward towards 'gender equality', we are transing children who don't conform. Why is this the current narrative? It seems to me that it undoes years of progress.
It honestly scares the shit out of me.
You know what I want to read? A first person account of a 'trans' kid that grew up in a home and a community where they were allowed to wear whatever they chose, play with whatever they chose and have whatever hobbies they wanted. How many children from these kind of backgrounds still grow up intensely unhappy and desperate to change their sex? It would really help the trans cause if those stories were more widely available. Everything I have read seems to tell of children being told their natural preferences are wrong and being encouraged or forced to change themselves to fit in. What happens if we go 'Yeah, you're absolutely fine as you are. It's perfectly ok for a boy to wear dresses and play with barbies'.
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