The sale of Phalloplasties are booming, and it may not be a good thing. Like me, you may have to ask what they are.
It’s an engineered replacement artificial penis. Dr Miroslav Djordjevic, a professor of urology and surgery at the University of Belgrade School of Medicine, attaches them. He’s attached a lot more of them recently. And that is because considerably more people who have had surgery to re-assign their gender, have afterwards regretted it, and asked him to do whatever he can to reverse the original cutting and stitching. So many people in fact, that it is worrying Dr Djordjeciv. And therefore it has also worried the psychotherapist and LGBTQI activist James Caspian who has worked with him.
Caspian’s work has been to help the mind rather than body. He has been helping to counsel people who wanted to change gender. It is a journey or a process he has wanted to encourage. Watching the numbers of people taking this route grow, he was surprised and taken aback to also see a growth in the numbers of people claiming it had been a mistake, and wanting to change back. Mentally ill at ease with who they were, they had hoped that peace of mind might be achieved through transgendering; but it hadn’t.
Caspian began to do some research into this trans-regret. He signed up to do a postgraduate thesis at Bath Spa university. When his research began to harden up, and the university saw he was documenting the failure of the trans process, they refused to let him continue; they claimed “the posting of unpleasant material on blogs or social media may be detrimental to the reputation of the University”.
A group of women who experienced gender re-assignment, deeply regretted it and tried to change back, wrote a book about their experience called “Blood and Vision.” In it they call to account the people who had encouraged them in their journey gender exploration. They ask why no one helped them find other solutions? They accuse those who had enthusiastically encouraged them of colluding in an experiment that badly damaged them.
James Caspian has given up his work in counselling people who want gender reassignment, for similar reasons. He is a member of the UK Council for Psychotherapy. They have just drawn up a memo of understanding which effectively prohibits any therapist questioning the process. You can only encourage, not ask why or explore the possibility of other options. If you help the client question the process you might be struck off for being ‘transphobic.’
But Caspian believes more work has to be done in asking if this huge explosion of numbers making the trans journey is founded on mental illness.
Many of the younger people who present at gender clinics have a history of mental health issues such as self-harming, social anxiety, and a variety of eating disorders. They see transitioning as their panacea.
In addition, the evidence is that the proportion of people attending gender clinics who are on the autistic spectrum is approximately six times higher than the general population.
When the Tavistock clinic for gender reassignment opened in 1989, it had two referrals a year. Last year it had 2,000.
The evidence suggests that the experience of the authors of Blood and Vision may be correct. On the back of a politically motivated campaign to reimagine gender issues and broaden out sexuality and gender beyond the heterosexual, a whole generation of (mainly but not only) mentally distressed girls are being driven down a road that it is already clear, will not bring the mental peace they craved, but create deep regret.
In this light, the unquestioning affirmation of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s preface to new guidelines on transgenderism in schools, and the new guidelines produced by the Jersey Education Department for trans pupils, may collude with mental illness and harm not help. Vulnerable people, teenagers in particular who are grasping at transgenderism as a way of easing mental pain, are being encouraged in their quest. This is meant to be a gesture to supposedly undermine bullying and criticism. This seems appears hugelyt progressive; but being ‘cool’, may in fact be being cruel.
And alongside this collusion, which may be cruel, there is the toxic cocktail of public censorship.
There is raft of intelligent and articulate feminists who don’t think that a man who has been operated on and hormonally bombarded qualifies as a ‘real’ rather than an imaginary woman.
They are loudly and even violently denounced as TERF’s (trans-exclusionary-radical-feminists) by the trans activists. They are vilified and public platforms are withdrawn or forbidden to them.
Increasingly no one is being allowed to question the project. The victims of censorship range from persecuted TERF’s to Academics like Prof Jordan Peterson, who refuses to be coerced by the Ontario Equalities Board into using gender-free pronouns; or Lindsay Shepherd being sacked from her university teaching in Canada because she suggested there were two sides to the question; not forgetting Caspian himself and Bath Spa university forbidding research into ‘trans-regret’.
In the context of transgenderism PC may come to mean something rather different. ‘Politically Correct’ may turn out unintentionally to be ‘Politically and Personally Cruel’.
Gender Ideology Harms Children
Updated September 2017
The American College of Pediatricians urges healthcare professionals, educators and legislators to reject all policies that condition children to accept as normal a life of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex. Facts – not ideology – determine reality.
1. Human sexuality is an objective biological binary trait: “XY” and “XX” are genetic markers of male and female, respectively – not genetic markers of a disorder. The norm for human design is to be conceived either male or female. Human sexuality is binary by design with the obvious purpose being the reproduction and flourishing of our species. This principle is self-evident. The exceedingly rare disorders of sex development (DSDs), including but not limited to testicular feminization and congenital adrenal hyperplasia, are all medically identifiable deviations from the sexual binary norm, and are rightly recognized as disorders of human design. Individuals with DSDs (also referred to as “intersex”) do not constitute a third sex.1
2. No one is born with a gender. Everyone is born with a biological sex. Gender (an awareness and sense of oneself as male or female) is a sociological and psychological concept; not an objective biological one. No one is born with an awareness of themselves as male or female; this awareness develops over time and, like all developmental processes, may be derailed by a child’s subjective perceptions, relationships, and adverse experiences from infancy forward. People who identify as “feeling like the opposite sex” or “somewhere in between” do not comprise a third sex. They remain biological men or biological women.2,3,4
3. A person’s belief that he or she is something they are not is, at best, a sign of confused thinking. When an otherwise healthy biological boy believes he is a girl, or an otherwise healthy biological girl believes she is a boy, an objective psychological problem exists that lies in the mind not the body, and it should be treated as such. These children suffer from gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria (GD), formerly listed as Gender Identity Disorder (GID), is a recognized mental disorder in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-5).5 The psychodynamic and social learning theories of GD/GID have never been disproved.2,4,5
4. Puberty is not a disease and puberty-blocking hormones can be dangerous. Reversible or not, puberty- blocking hormones induce a state of disease – the absence of puberty – and inhibit growth and fertility in a previously biologically healthy child.6
5. According to the DSM-5, as many as 98% of gender confused boys and 88% of gender confused girls eventually accept their biological sex after naturally passing through puberty.5
6. Pre-pubertal children diagnosed with gender dysphoria may be given puberty blockers as young as eleven, and will require cross-sex hormones in later adolescence to continue impersonating the opposite sex. These children will never be able to conceive any genetically related children even via artificial reproductive technology. In addition, cross-sex hormones (testosterone and estrogen) are associated with dangerous health risks including but not limited to cardiac disease, high blood pressure, blood clots, stroke, diabetes, and cancer.7,8,9,10,11
7. Rates of suicide are nearly twenty times greater among adults who use cross-sex hormones and undergo sex reassignment surgery, even in Sweden which is among the most LGBTQ – affirming countries.12 What compassionate and reasonable person would condemn young children to this fate knowing that after puberty as many as 88% of girls and 98% of boys will eventually accept reality and achieve a state of mental and physical health?
8. Conditioning children into believing a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse. Endorsing gender discordance as normal via public education and legal policies will confuse children and parents, leading more children to present to “gender clinics” where they will be given puberty-blocking drugs. This, in turn, virtually ensures they will “choose” a lifetime of carcinogenic and otherwise toxic cross-sex hormones, and likely consider unnecessary surgical mutilation of their healthy body parts as young adults.
Michelle A. Cretella, M.D.
President of the American College of Pediatricians
Quentin Van Meter, M.D.
Vice President of the American College of Pediatricians
Paul McHugh, M.D.
University Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Medical School and the former psychiatrist in chief at Johns Hopkins Hospital
Originally published March 2016
Updated September 2017