this article is an example of sound reporting on a difficult and widely misunderstood subject. i have read and shared many articles that likewise attempt to reveal the intricacies of supporting and treating transgender children. some of the other articles i’ve shared have been loathe to mention the drawbacks and concern, and are great because of the positive tone they set. but there are concerns, and people who want to understand our transgender children need to have a balanced view. they have questions, and questions need to be addressed.
nothing that is true need shun the light of scrutiny. studies and research have been done that effectively exhonerate the supportive parents and medical professionals as are part of the solution to a problem, that isn’t really a problem. this article points out some highlights of research that suggest the differences in actual physical brain structures and workings which align the transgender child more closely to their preferred or affirmed gender than the one allocuted and assigned at birth on the basis of genitalia.
it also addresses the issues of the consequences of a transgender child not being supported or allowed to be who they know themselves to be: self harming, self-mutilation,depression and suicide are among the common results of ignoring this need. in contrast, children once allowed to express their true selves, in a context of loving support and proscribed protocols of appropriate treatment, are far more likely to manifest and far fewer of these symptoms.
for ziona, the difference was like night and day. she is still a moody child, she tantrums and cannot self-calm. but these are mostly associated with the fact of her autism. the moment she was allowed to live outloud as the girl she knows herself to be, even these symptoms diminished by almost 90%! she got happier, quit trying to ‘off’ the ‘spare part’ and smiled alot more often. nor did she feel compelled to ‘out’ herself as a “boy-girl” to folk she just met, something she used to feel was necessary for honesty sake…since referring to her with male pronouns ran contrary to the truth she knew to be.
allaying fears that somehow the parents are ‘to blame’ for their children being transgender seems silly but no parent of such a child that i have come across feels the least bit intimidated by counselors and other psychiatric professionals being part of the treatment. if anything, we are relieved to help the psyche of our little ones heal from any loss of self-esteem they might suffer because of being different. this said, most surely with more research it will be determined that transgender folk are not mentally ill, a fact already known by most. but then, who can’t benefit from a little counseling when going through something as all encompassing as is the transgender person’s reality.
recently in the news, there were a couple of articles that seemed intent on casting aspersions on the practice of listening and seeing to the needs of transgender children. one even went so far as to accuse a doctor of wrongdoing in the case of providing care for a transgender person who eventually decided to ‘go back’ to their assigned gender. the article in question seemed intent on presenting that this is common. it is not. nor can we understand what extenuating circumstances in a person’s life might make the decision to ‘revert’ a comfortable one. are they ostracised by family, friends, and others in their environs? is the pain of subsequent rejection or the hardship of just ‘being different’ in a society that condemns one for it a factor?
that’s why i was especially glad to read in the article i’m sharing today, that only around 1% of transgender people who receive treatment decide later to ‘change back’.
read and pass along this article which tends to be even keeled and logical…especially share it with those whose eyes could use a little opening.