Before starting this blog, I spent many hours researching the Internet, seeking information from those parents who were questioning their daughters’ perceptions about their perceived gender dysphoria/thinking they are “transgender”. It’s been difficult to find information which challenge the current trendy trans-crazyness. Parents who question this transgender propaganda and agenda have been vilified and accused of being transphobic and that they are the cause of the suicides of teenagers. This is not true! Having parents who question or challenge does NOT cause a teenager to commit suicide. Undiagnosed or poorly/untreated Clinical Depression causes people to commit suicide. We love our kids and long for them to keep them away from harm.
In the last few weeks, I’ve read about 4 different parents who are in a situation similar to mine. I have also been in contact with 2 parents via the wonderful world of the interweb and email. We are travelling this similar, difficult path on different roadways. We are trying to navigate a virtual sea of mis-information and misguided assumptions. We love and worry about our young daughters. They are a part of our hearts. Our situations are different and yet, at the same time, eerily similar or the same. Our paths have crossed and I am so glad to know that I am not alone. It is reassuring. Any other mothers/parents out there…I hope that you will contact me. Knowing that we are not alone is empowering and also gives us hope.
Two years ago, our then 16-year-old daughter suddenly told us she thought that “maybe I should be a boy”. We had not seen any past or current evidence that this is the case. She has never previously complained about anything related to gender. Unbeknownst to us at the time, she had been spending time “researching” on the internet and using YouTube videos to get her information. As soon as we found out, the laptop (which had been in her bedroom) was taken out and she was made to do any internet stuff in plain view/public spaces in our house. By the time we did this, though, I believe she had already been brainwashed into thinking this as being her reality. See www.transgenderreality.com The information online which the folks running this website are uncovering and exposing is truly disturbing and scary.
My daughter has always been socially/emotionally young compared to other girls her age. She remains very socially/emotionally young when compared to other graduating grade 12 girls. She is also very academically smart (just below the “gifted” status). She excels in subjects like Math and Physics. She is also very musical and actively involved with technical theatre. She was a bit behind her peers in development of physical secondary sex characteristics. However, that being said, her physical development happened over a very short time at about age 16 (around the time of her reported discomfort). I can certainly understand her confusion in comparing herself with other high school girls her age and a feeling of not belonging in that category. Recently she purchased 3 chest binders through Ebay. Aside from all the physical risks associated with chest binders, I am also worried that her wearing these binders will not help her supposed “dysphoria” get better, but will only serve to make her discomfort worse.
I am a Registered Nurse. I work with a family doctor who is seen as being “trans friendly”. I worked with him for 2 years before my daughter first spoke of her feelings. I have cared for a number of both MtF and FtM transgender young people. I am keenly aware that many of them have co-morbid psychological issues, not the least of which is Depression. And I have yet to meet any of them who are truly “happy”. I have had to change the dressings from a lower arm donor site on an FTM patient who recently had a phalloplasty surgical procedure. The donor site was ¾ the diameter of the lower arm and ran from just above the wrist to just below the elbow. The diameter of that arm now is substantially smaller than the arm which has had not surgery done to it. The donor arm will never look the same again. I have absolutely no issue calling this surgery “mutilation”, as this donor/muscle and tissue removal surgery was not performed to remove anything dangerous like cancer or flesh eating bacteria. Also, the vagina was not cancerous or dangerous, and yet it’s been obliterated. The patient is only 24 years old. Will she end up having “regrets”? I don’t know.
I do know that the first hospital to perform “SRS” surgeries stopped doing so when they realized that there was no benefits from this procedure for their patients. I also know that, no matter what the number is (41%, 25%) the suicide rate for transgender people is significantly higher than people who are not transgender, and that this rate is significantly higher, whether or not the transgender person goes through SRS surgery(ies). This frightens me, as a parent, and causes me to think that the medical and psychiatric professionals are missing something. There is no other mental health issue which “requires” surgery as a treatment. This current focus on “transgender” as “normal” could actually be a smoke screen for other mental health issues- which could be treatable or manageable without surgical or harmful medications.
As our daughter has recently turned 18, I worry that she will make life changing decisions and live to regret them and it will be beyond my parental control (whatever that term means, exactly). My husband and I keep letting her know she is loved and that she is a beautiful and amazing person. We hope and pray that, as she gets older and becomes more socially/emotionally mature, she will discover this for herself. She is beautifully female-bodied and her gender is simply the essence inside her body. I pray she will one day focus on changing her world and not her body.