Challenging new transgender guidelines

Experts have responded to the World Professional Association for Transgender Health’s  (WPATH) new standards of care, expressing grave concerns about the guidelines.

WPATH, which advocates an affirmation only approach, “clearly defines the treatment of transgender and gender-diverse children and adolescents, including medical interventions such as puberty delaying medications or gender-affirming hormones, and when appropriate, surgical interventions, as medically necessary”.

But not everyone agrees with the Trans-advocacy group. Indeed, experts are now responding to the guidelines and the message is clear, they’re “not up to standard”.

Denise Caignon, founder of the pioneering American blog 4thWaveNow said;

The 11th-hour ditching of any minimum age recommendations — apart from a semi-buried one advising that the very dangerous phalloplasty be limited to 18-plus — is obviously quite telling.

WPATH officials said it themselves a few days later: they want to help clinicians avoid lawsuits if they deviate from minimum age recommendations by WPATH. This would seem to indicate that they are very well aware of the rising tide of angry de-transitioners who are openly discussing suing their gender clinic providers.

James M. Cantor, Canadian clinical psychologist and researcher, questioned why other alternatives, such as psychotherapy, are not utilised more and labelled many medicalised interventions as ‘unnecessary.’

Roberto D’Angelo, director of the Society for Evidence-based Gender Medicine said, “hormonal and surgical interventions are highly uncertain.” He noted concerns about sterility and other risks including bone density and brain development issues. When puberty blockers are used on children there is a risk to sexual function, cardiovascular health, and many other physiological functions.

Oliver Davies, an Australian who has detransitioned, is very concerned about the “affirmation -only” agenda and challenged the reasons people detransition.

To me right now, it's not really about detransitioners. My greatest concern is that children who will not benefit from this [medical transition] are being led down this path. Gender dysphoria is now self-diagnosed and any family doctor — including doctors with no training or specialisation in this area — can initiate puberty blockers or hormones, as long as the parents agree.

Bev Jackson, co-founder of LGB Alliance UK, said she was ‘horrified’ by the latest guidelines.

This is an issue of grave concern to us, because of the increasing awareness that LGB teens, especially lesbians, frequently mistake their sexual orientation for a “gender identity” issue. They then seek hormones and surgery in an attempt to relieve their distress. In many cases they come to regret these interventions — but not until some 8 to 10 years later.

The new WPATH standards of care are appalling. Besides the extraordinary inclusion of a chapter on “eunuchs” under the “gender diverse umbrella”, there are numerous alarming details. Healthcare professionals are recommended to prescribe hormone treatment to children without parental involvement if such involvement would be “harmful or unnecessary”.

Kirralie Smith, Binary spokeswoman, said these criticisms must be considered as paramount.

“Transgender care, especially regarding children, has become extremely politicised and is to the determinant of children,” she said.

“Rigorous debate, extensive investigations and long-term critical studies must be conducted to endure the best outcomes for our youth.

“Right now, there are too many alarms to be ignored.”