A pyschotherapist has wondered why it seems like there has been a significant psychic epidemic of late with regard to transgender children -- children and young people coming to believe that they are the opposite sex, and, some of them, undertaking drastic measures to change their bodies. It is certainly true that transgender was a term most folks had never heard before and a term that related largely to adults who had come to believe that there was a discrepancy between their sex and their gender. “Rapid-onset gender dysphoria” is the official term.
Fourfold and fivefold increases of children identifying as transgender are being reported in gender clinics in the United States and other countries. Think of this. There was no transgender youth clinic in the United States until one opened in Boston in 2007. In the 10 or so years since, some 40 additional clinics have opened -- clinics that cater exclusively to children.
This despite the fact that transgender is a term without a uniform definition and a a wealth of solid research concluding that 80–95% of children who experience a cross-sex identification in childhood will eventually give it up and identify with their birth or biological sex when adults. Some, perhaps many of them, will come to identify as lesbian or gay.
Medicine and law are moving pretty fast to establish ordinances and protocols which are built upon the conclusion that gender is between the ears, not the legs. But are they moving too fast? The notion of an innate gender identity different from the biological sex is not yet supported by science or research. Most of the evidence is anecdotal.
Read more about it all here.
My point? If respected voices in the medical and psychiatric community are wondering if we should not be exercising more caution here, why are we rushing to put into place procedures and laws to support what is not yet established science? Even some members of the gay and lesbian community are worried. The epidemic must be examined to see if we are not, in effect, creating it or encouraging it -- especially in children. What ever happened to caution? If there are voices in the medical and psychiatric community suggesting that we are moving too quickly here, then it is not simply voices from the religious communities with their typical rejection of such things. It may be an epidemic which is both self-caused and self-fulfilling. In either case, even people sympathetic to the cause think damage may be done before anyone knows what they are doing.