With children's gender identity up for grabs, all interested parties are carving out their niches.
However, rather than seeing an improvement in the psychological wellbeing of kids, we are ending up gender confused children, suffering serious mental anguish.With some have to deal with life altering consequences for physical gender related decisions, often made in haste.
Primary School's appear to be awash with booklets, hand outs and speaking engagements regarding gender identity at present.
The vast many of these are helpful and informative. But some are compiled by non-medical individuals, with a clear no holds barred devotion to LGBT+, and a self proclaimed ability to brighten the world of struggling teens and children.
So we now face a massive conundrum. Is this type of educational content acceptable, needed, or warranted in our Primary Schools? Especially, given the level of psychological harm and increasing number of children presenting to mental health professionals with Gender Dysporia.
The battleground for the hearts and minds of children has taken on an almost religious cult status, with some Transgender advocates. Some of whom are adopting a Jim Jones like mentality. The only difference being, if you don't agree with their narrative, then you should go drink the Kool Aid.
Infant Gender Assignment
In the UK, the latest iteration of Trans gospel comes in the form of a new book intended for young children in Primary Schools. The publication confidently states that experienced doctors wrongly assign gender at birth. This is known as Infant Gender Assignment.
According to one Transgender organisation, this occurs when a “doctor holds a child up to the harsh light of the delivery room, looks between its legs, and declares their opinion: It's a boy, or a girl, based on nothing more than a cursory assessment of an offspring's genitals. Male and female aren't particular things. They aren't real.”
More than 800 schools have been sent copies of What Does LGBT+ Mean? which claims that a doctor or nurse “looked at our body and gave us a label based on what they could see”.
Written by mother-and-son diversity campaigners, it features a picture of a doctor holding a clipboard and pen by a row of babies under the “assigned sex” chapter.
The book adds that “gender is different from assigned sex” and is who they “feel” they are, with examples given as “male, female, both or neither”.
It includes a section on “gender as a spectrum”, saying: “Some people find it useful to think of gender as a sliding scale between male and female.”
The scale is shown with labels in between male and female, including mostly female, partly female, both or neither, partly male and mostly male.
“I”ve given birth twice and both times I knew what sex the baby was at 20 weeks. It's just absurd.”
Helen Joyce, from the advocacy group Sex Matters, told The Times UK: “Nobody is assigned a sex. I've given birth twice and both times I knew what sex the baby was at 20 weeks. It's just absurd.'
“How did we get to a place where teachers feel they can sit and say to primary children, ‘Some people feel male, some feel female, some feel both and some feel neither'?”
What Does LGBT+ Mean? was published in October and is described as an educational book for children aged between 8 and 11 and written to be easy to use in the classroom.
Its author is Olly Pike, director of the LGBT+ educational resource Pop'n'Olly; Mel Lane, a diversity campaigner; and her son, James Canning.
The book claims “people feel happier and included when their pronouns are respected” and includes definitions of those who identify as transgender, non-binary and intersex.
On pronouns, it adds: “We can't just assume pronouns. If you are not sure about another person's pronouns, it is OK to politely ask.”
The book features all the LGBT+ flags, as well as suggested activities for pupils to try in school. There are also two pages dedicated to an explanation of sexual orientation, with labels of heterosexual, gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual and asexual.
Primary school children are being taught that a person's sex is “assigned” to them by a doctor at birth and that gender can be a “sliding scale”.
Data provided on the Pop'n'Olly website shows that the book has been donated to at least 814 primary schools.
When asked how widely it was being read by teachers, Pike said: “Teachers have expressed interest, thanks and gratitude towards this book. It's helping the teachers as much as students.”
A quote on the back of the book, from a key stage two teacher, says: “This book contains everything I need to cover the new RSE curriculum, with examples that make sense to children.”
The question that will inevitably arise, is whether or not the discourse contained within this book is harmful, or not to children?
There are mounting concerns over such content afforded by self proclaimed pro-trans advocates, who are neither medical or professional experts. Individuals who are preaching an opinion, or personal experience but presenting the content as scientific fact.
Social Media and pro-trans influencers have played a major part in contributing to Gender Dysporia experienced by children, especially during and after the Covid19 lockdown.
One top UK psychologist with over 16 years' experience in child mental health now says over half of her patients identify as transgender.
While going public with her experiences with clients, she sought anonymity for fear of backlash from the Trans community.
The medical expert, who is based in southern England, said she feared being accused of ‘transphobia' or even conversion therapy, if she questioned, or explored the child's decision to swap gender.
In many cases, she said, youngsters now coming to see her with mental anguish or suicidal thoughts had been allowed to transition from one gender to another at a young age, sometimes even at five or six.
She said parents rarely associated the psychological problems that were blighting their children's lives with their change of gender.
‘The parent would be telling me about their teenager, about their mental anguish, suicidal thoughts and self harm, and then they'd drop something in, so casually that I'd almost think I'd missed it, ‘Oh, and he's a transboy (or girl), transitioned when he (or she) was five (or six or seven), but that's all fine',' she wrote in an online article.
The question also needs to be asked, whether parents are in some way directly, or indirectly complicit in contributing to the psychological harm experienced by children.
If a parents like Helen Joyce can tell a child is Trans at 20 weeks old, does the child even have a hope of independent decision making when it comes to their gender.
Furthermore, If parents don't at least question why and where a child's gender belief originates from, could that child be setting themselves up for trauma later in life having followed populist culture, rather than their own biological and psychological make up.
Recently, the debate surrounding reasons why gender transition among those under 18 should be prevented has become louder. In particular the argument has focused on whether or not, children are psychologically mature enough to make such a life altering decision at a young age.
Arguments have been put forward by pro-trans advocates that young people are capable of self identifying their gender at any age. They cite examples of how preventing transition leads to serious mental health difficulties and suicidal ideation.
However, any mental health professional who deals with people suffering from these symptoms will know, such an individual in that moment may not be capable of making choices to benifit their best interests.
Rather, the individual should recover to a place where they are more stable from their mental health difficulties and then make an informed choice. Especially, if the choice they are making is a life altering one.
In December 2020, the UK three High Court Judges issued a judgement stating children under 16 with gender dysphoria are unlikely to be able to give informed consent to undergo treatment with puberty-blocking drugs.
The case was brought against Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust. One of the claimants, Keira Bell, 23, from Cambridge, had been referred to the Tavistock Centre, which runs the UK's only gender-identity development service (GIDS), as a teenager and was prescribed puberty blockers aged 16.
She argued the clinic should have challenged her more over her decision to transition to a male as a teenager.
In a ruling, Dame Victoria Sharp, sitting with Lord Justice Lewis and Mrs Justice Lieven, said: “It is highly unlikely that a child aged 13 or under would be competent to give consent to the administration of puberty blockers.
“It is doubtful that a child aged 14 or 15 could understand and weigh the long-term risks and consequences of the administration of puberty blockers.”
They added: “In respect of young persons aged 16 and over, the legal position is that there is a presumption that they have the ability to consent to medical treatment.”
“Given the long-term consequences of the clinical interventions at issue in this case, and given that the treatment is as yet innovative and experimental, we recognise that clinicians may well regard these as cases where the authorisation of the court should be sought prior to commencing the clinical treatment.”
A second claimant, known only as Mrs A, is the mother of a 15-year-old girl with autism, who is awaiting treatment at the clinic.
Speaking to the BBC prior to the ruling in December 2020, she said: “My fear is – it's not that she transitions – it's that she gets it wrong.”
She said it was “frightening” there was so little exploration of why a child might be feeling they were the wrong sex before puberty blockers were given.
“It is distressing to have to wait and to try and convince someone that your identity warrants medical intervention. However, I think the downside of getting it wrong, the outcomes of getting it wrong, are also catastrophic.”
Bordering On Ideological
In April 2022, health Secretary Sajid Javid determined to review what immediate changes can be made to gender treatment services for children in England.
This could include changing the law to let the independent Cass review have access to an NHS database of young people who already received treatment.
It comes ahead of the review's report, due later this year.
Mr Javid told MPs services in this area were too affirmative and narrow, and “bordering on ideological”.
He is now thought to be planning an overhaul of the Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS), which is run by the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, with clinics in London and Leeds.
This refocus on gender identity and gender reaffirmation issues are now becoming a topic of debate internationally.
In the US many states are actively seeking to address trans issues impacting young people. A Missouri House bill now seeks to block access to gender-affirming care for transgender and nonbinary youth, effectively ending health insurance coverage for gender-affirming treatments and putting the medical licenses of affirming providers in jeopardy.
The bill, officially titled the Save Adolescents from Experimentation (SAFE) Act, stipulates that physicians or other health care providers in Missouri may not provide “gender transition procedures” like puberty blockers or hormones to any person under 18 years old.
Doctors who continue providing or recommending gender-affirming care to trans or nonbinary minors would be subject to disciplinary action and could potentially have their medical licenses revoked.
“Any referral for or provision of gender transition procedures to an individual under eighteen years of age is unprofessional conduct and shall be subject to discipline by the appropriate licensing entity or disciplinary review board with competent jurisdiction in this state,” the bill reads.
For parents the issue of gender identity is one that we all must decide upon. Do we permit this current gender advocate free for all, or do we simply let children be children?
What do you think?
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