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2014-11-23 Sex change regret and media-bias against transsexuals

posted 23 Nov 2014, 03:03 by Cake Kidd   [ updated 23 Nov 2014, 03:03 ]

I have come across a small number of web articles (here, here, and here) that provide a push-back against the standard treatment of transsexualism, consisting of hormone therapy and surgery. They re-chew the old discredited arguments by Paul McHugh, and some use statements of people who regret their gender change surgery. Apparently, the fact that some people are unhappy with their surgery is something that transgender activists are trying to hide. The writers style themselves as investigative journalists who are exposing some kind of dirty cover-up.

I guess there is some huge conspiracy underway that tries to… um, tries to… um, I guess to trick non-transsexual people into having sex change surgery or something like that??? And why are transsexual activists doing that… because, um, hm, because… well, I haven’t figured this one out yet.

Anyway, I meant to write a rebuttal, but Brynn Tannehill did so already in the Huffington Post , using material from my website. I just want to add a couple of additional points:

For example, a recent study (Dhejne, Öberg et al., 2014) with 681 transsexuals found a surgery regret rate of 2.2 %. That figure clearly means that you can find one person who regrets the measure for every 49 who benefitted from it. For the entire study, 15 people expressing regret were found versus 666 who were satisfied. This illustrates why individual anecdotes, why personal experience, cannot replace science. Most things in real life do not have a 100 % success or approval rate, which is why we need to study pros and cons carefully, and work on improving success rates. Also, correctly diagnosing transsexualism is obviously very important. In addition, there is the question of personal responsibility and liberty. Some people do harm themselves with things that are normally beneficial – what restrictions should be placed on responsible people in order to protect the irresponsible?

Even if I’m repeating myself: On transgender children – the standards of care by the World Professional Association for Transgender Health state clearly that childhood gender dysphoria or gender-queer behaviour might disappear in adolescence (most children with gender dysphoria develop into cisgender homosexuals). Gender-dysphoric children do not require medical treatment. Later in life, reversible puberty blockers can be indicated, followed by irreversible procedures only when the diagnosis is stable and unlikely to change. That is what transgender activists want. Transgender activists are against genital surgery on children, advocating that any irreversible surgery should be made only later in life. It was the medical establishment of old that was in favour of such procedures on small children.

There simply is no transgender conspiracy. Transsexuals are in fact the only people who know from first-hand experience how awful it is to live in a body that doesn’t correspond with one’s psychological gender. Surgery is a lifesaver, but only to those genuinely suffering from gender dysphoria.