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Empowering you to build a pro-life, pro-family world.

Empowering you to build a pro-life, pro-family world.

Empowering you to build a pro-life, pro-family world.

What Percentage of Transgenders Regret Surgery?

Statistics vary on the numbers of people who regret having surgery to change from male to female or vice versa. We will look at some recent data and at some real-life stories to get a better picture of what happens when someone decides to alter his or her sex.

The 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey (page 111)—the most recent available because of the pandemic—claims that 11% of female respondents reverted back to their original sex. Transgender men had a reversion rate of 4%. Those who chose to revert cited a variety of reasons. Five percent of those who detransitioned realized that a gender transition was not what they wanted. Other people cited family pressure and difficulty getting a job as reasons to detransition.

percentage of transgender people who revert back to original sex, regret transitioning and detransition

Authors of a 2021 article in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery conducted a systematic review of several databases to determine the rate of regret for those who had undergone surgery. According to the article, “7928 transgender patients who underwent any type of [gender-affirmation surgeries] were included. The pooled prevalence of regret after GAS was 1% (95% CI <1%–2%).” However, the article goes on to state that there was “high subjectivity in the assessment of regret and lack of standardized questionnaires, which highlight the importance of developing validated questionnaires in this population.”

But despite these low numbers and any possible issues with the format of the questionnaire, those who have lived life as a transgender male or female and who have detransitioned claim that the numbers are much higher and that people are afraid to speak out.

For instance, Eva is a woman who lived as a transgender male as a teenager. Though she did not medically transition, she determined—as an adult—that she no longer wanted to live as a man. She states that she felt “misled” by both family members and doctors. According to the article: “Eva, now 24, is part of a controversial cohort known as detransitioners and desisters, transgender people who come to rethink their decision, often having already undergone drug and surgical treatments.”

In October 2020, Eva began a group called Detrans Canada, which she hopes can help people who feel “ostracized” for their decision to detransition. Though this was still a fledgling group at the time of the article’s writing, “Eva noted that a Reddit forum for detransitioners … grew from 3,000 to over 16,000 members in just a few months.”

In a similar story by Medical News, Charlie Evans, a woman in the UK who detransitioned and stopped taking hormone therapy, has said that “hundreds” of people have contacted her since she made it public that she was detransitioning. According to Charlie, “I’m in communication with 19- and 20-year-olds who have had full gender reassignment surgery who wish they hadn’t, and their dysphoria hasn’t been relieved, they don’t feel better for it. They don’t know what their options are now.”

Charlie’s story continues:

The number of young people seeking gender transition is at the highest it has ever been, but little is reported about how many of them regret the decision later, finding they are unhappy with their new gender.

Evans, who made her story public last year, says she is shocked by the number of people who have contacted her saying they have found themselves in a similar position to her….

One 21-year-old woman who reached out to Evans said gender reassignment did not help her gender dysphoria and that she has therefore also detransitioned.

Medical News also tells the story of a woman named Ruby who had undergone testosterone therapy and lived as a male. However, she changed her mind about transitioning to a male before she was scheduled to have surgery to remove her breasts. Ruby states: “I didn’t think any change was going to be enough in the end and I thought it was better to work on changing how I felt about myself, than changing my body. I’ve seen similarities in the way I experience gender dysphoria, in the way I experience other body image issues.”

Regardless of the numbers, regret is real—and the numbers don’t really matter to those affected by a decision that they now regret and who feel misled by either doctors or families.

What they know is that they are hurting.

And as stewards of our brothers and sisters in Christ, it is our job to treat them with empathy, understanding, and compassion. It is our job to help them see the inherent dignity in themselves. And in both love and charity, it is our job to assist them as they seek help in moving forward.

 

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But first, let’s look at how many people identify as transgender.

 

More Transgender Statistics

The UCLA School of Law states that 0.6% of adults identify as transgender. That equates to about 1.3 million adults.

number of transgender adults in the US

The Hill recently reported on a 2020 survey that polled more than 15,000 American citizens aged 18 years or older. According to the survey, “Within Generation Z, the youngest adult demographic who are aged between 18 to 23 in 2020 … two percent identified as gay, lesbian, or transgender.”

Transgender identification includes everything from cross-dressing to hormonal treatment to sex reassignment surgery. The 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, which claims to be the largest survey of transgender people in the US and its territories, states that of its 27,715 respondents, 78% wished for hormonal treatment. At that time, about 49% had received it.

hormone therapy statistics for transgender people

To understand the bigger picture, let’s explain the medical basis of those who consider themselves transgender.

 

Gender Dysphoria and Changing Gender

Today the term “gender dysphoria” has become part of our daily parlance. We hear about it on the news, and we see it in movies. But few seem to realize this is a recognized medical illness. According to an article entitled “Gender Dysphoria in Adolescence: Current Perspectives” by Riittakerttu Kaltiala-Heino et al.:

The fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) defines gender dysphoria (GD) as a condition in which a person has marked incongruence between the expressed or experienced gender and the biological sex at birth. This causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational or other important areas of functioning.

A man can have surgery to look like a woman, and a woman can have surgery to look like a man, but no one can change his DNA—the essence of his being—to truly become the opposite sex.

DNA

In an article entitled “Sex Reassignment Doesn’t Work. Here Is the Evidence,” Ryan T. Anderson, senior research fellow in American principles and public policy, discusses this very fact. He states:

Modern science shows that our sexual organization begins with our DNA and development in the womb, and that sex differences manifest themselves in many bodily systems and organs, all the way down to the molecular level…. Cosmetic surgery and cross-sex hormones can’t change us into the opposite sex. They can affect appearances. They can stunt or damage some outward expressions of our reproductive organization. But they can’t transform it. They can’t turn us from one sex into the other.

As Christians, we are called to witness the fact that, barring a chromosomal abnormality, biological sex is determined at our creation and remains for the duration of life. Yet, society today demands that we believe that gender is fluid—that each person can and should decide one’s gender, and that the world should just conform to our decisions. It does this to the detriment of the people who need help the most.

Despite afflicting a very small percentage of the population, the transgender movement has gained so much momentum that anyone who points out in charity any flaws in the transgender mentality are often considered unfeeling or even “hateful.”

Paul McHugh, MD, has spent over 40 years as the University Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Medical School studying transgender persons. In an article about reassignment surgery, he writes:

Gender dysphoria … belongs in the family of similarly disordered assumptions about the body, such as anorexia nervosa and body dysmorphic disorder. Its treatment should not be directed at the body as with surgery and hormones any more than one treats obesity-fearing anorexic patients with liposuction. The treatment should strive to correct the false, problematic nature of the assumption and to resolve the psychosocial conflicts provoking it.

Most young boys and girls who come seeking sex-reassignment … come with psychosocial issues—conflicts over the prospects, expectations, and roles that they sense are attached to their given sex—and presume that sex-reassignment will ease or resolve them. The grim fact is that most of these youngsters do not find therapists willing to assess and guide them in ways that permit them to work out their conflicts and correct their assumptions. Rather, they and their families find only ‘gender counselors’ who encourage them in their sexual misassumptions.

psychological counseling

 

Transgender Regret and Lost Years

We all strive to be happy—to feel comfortable in our own skin and to feel at peace with who we are. Indeed, in order to flourish as human beings, we must be comfortable with who we are. When we are not happy, we take steps to find out what has gone wrong. If you have ever hated something about yourself, you know that it’s a terrible feeling—one you would give almost anything to get rid of. So you work hard to make changes, to get back to a healthy state of mind or body. Sometimes you have to ask for help to get there.

But what if you feel so out of place in your own body that you believe the only way to attain happiness is to alter and maim that body? These feelings are what lead transgender men and women to the decision to transition.

But does changing gender appearance truly help the well-being of those who are confused or who feel like they don’t belong in their own bodies?

In 2020, Ryan Anderson penned an article discussing a study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry that examined the satisfaction of people after they transitioned to the opposite sex. The study stated: “In this first total population study of transgender individuals with a gender incongruence diagnosis, the longitudinal association between gender-affirming surgery and reduced likelihood of mental health treatment lends support to the decision to provide gender-affirming surgeries to transgender individuals who seek them.”

However, after publication, the journal then issued a correction. According to Anderson:

The world’s largest dataset on patients who have undergone sex-reassignment procedures reveals that these procedures do not bring mental health benefits. But that’s not what the authors originally claimed. Or what the media touted.

In October 2019, the American Journal of Psychiatry published a paper titled, “Reduction in Mental Health Treatment Utilization Among Transgender Individuals After Gender-Affirming Surgeries: A Total Population Study.” As the title suggests, the paper claimed that after having had sex-reassignment surgeries, a patient was less likely to need mental health treatment.

Well, over the weekend, the editors of the journal and the authors of the paper issued a correction. In the words of the authors, “the results demonstrated no advantage of surgery in relation to subsequent mood or anxiety disorder-related health care.”

But it’s actually worse than that. The original results already demonstrated no benefits to hormonal transition. That part didn’t need a correction.

So, the bottom line: The largest dataset on sex-reassignment procedures—both hormonal and surgical—reveals that such procedures do not bring the promised mental health benefits [emphasis added].

Ryan Anderson

Ryan Anderson by Gage Skidmore (CC BY-SA 2.0)

A man named Walter Heyer can attest to that fact. Walter transitioned to the opposite sex and later felt regret. Heyer suffered both sexual and emotional abuse as a child, and after many years of agony resulting from this abuse, he began to think that all his problems would go away if he were to become a woman. So, to the horror of his wife and children, he underwent surgery and became “Laura.”

He lived as Laura for eight years, but never felt the sense of peace he thought he would feel after transitioning. He came to realize that transitioning into someone else did not fix what truly ailed him. Heyer now states:

Had I not been misled by media stories of sex change “success” and by medical practitioners who said transitioning was the answer to my problems, I wouldn’t have suffered as I have. Genetics can’t be changed. Feelings, however, can and do change. Underlying issues often drive the desire to escape one’s life into another, and they need to be addressed before taking the radical step of transition.

walt heyer

Walt Heyer by HazteOir.org (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Walter sought therapy and was able to work through the problems that caused him to feel he needed to live as a woman. He detransitioned and has since married again. He and his wife now work to help others whose lives have been negatively affected by transitioning. He writes:

You will hear the media say, “Regret is rare.” But they are not reading my inbox, which is full of messages from transgender individuals who want the life and body back that was taken from them by cross-sex hormones, surgery and living under a new identity. After de-transitioning, I know the truth: Hormones and surgery may alter appearances, but nothing changes the immutable fact of your sex.

 

Compassion and the Church

As Catholics, we understand that the body God gifted us at our creation was intentional and that God makes no mistakes. Furthermore, our body houses our soul and is a temple of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we must treat it with respect and reverence, never causing harm to it.

The National Catholic Bioethics Center explains this beautifully:

A person’s sex is manifested by the body in accordance with how the person has been created, and so it cannot be in conflict with any truer or deeper sexual identity contrary to that bodily sex. This is a foundational anthropological point that no medical association or political ideology can overturn. The psychological experience of a disconnect with one’s bodily sex is not to be minimized; it calls for appropriate psychotherapy, but it can in no way be reflective of an “incorrect” sex.

Given this understanding of what it means to be a human person—a body-soul unity whose innate sexual identity is reflected in the person’s biology—it should be clear that no surgical, hormonal, or other intervention directed toward the body is capable of altering that innate sexual identity.

The NCBC goes on to explain that studies have shown that sex reassignment surgeries do not necessarily resolve the feelings of anxiety that people suffer from and that such surgeries also lead to a significant increase in both suicide attempts and in suicide.

sad man with depression

In another report, Paul McHugh, MD, discusses the fact that adults who have had sex reassignment surgery have a higher risk of experiencing mental health problems than those in the general population. He cites a study that found that individuals who had had this surgery were about five times more likely than the control group to attempt suicide and almost 20 times more likely to succeed.

 

Final Thoughts

As intelligent people, we cannot deny what medical science teaches about the immutability of sex. As Catholics, we cannot deny God’s plan for us as His children. And as human beings, we cannot deny the fact that people are hurting.

We must approach this sensitive issue with love and compassion, for to do anything else would be a disservice to our fellow man. No one specific fix will heal all of those who are suffering, and we must enlist the help of ethical mental health professionals to help people facing gender dysphoria.

Though there may seem like little we can do as individuals, especially if we don’t personally know anyone with these struggles, there is one thing we can all do. We can and must teach the truth and not be party to the promulgation of lies that claims that people can change their sex free of repercussions.

Gender is not fluid. Regret after changing your body is real. And those who are hurting must be given an outlet to heal that does not entail the maiming of their bodies.



63 Comments

  1. Terry L Lowman on July 13, 2019 at 4:51 PM

    Oppressed people always have mental, emotional and addictive behavior issues. I’m glad you said to approach people experiencing dysphoria with love and compassion.

    Maybe god wants us to learn from people who don’t fit the gender binary. Otherwise, assuming no errors, god wouldn’t create intersex individuals–it may be only one in every 2000 people, but that’s something.

    My personal belief is that all the chemicals in our environment are affecting us and our gender. For example, we use oxybenzone in sunscreens. It’s a synthetic estrogen. Another synthetic estrogen, DES, was widely touted until it was used long enough that we found female offspring would require hysterectomies in their 20s.
    I have to add that the transwomen and transmen who I know are pretty happy with their transition…but generally they have undergone a lot of therapy to determine if gender dysphoria or other issues are at the root of their discomfort and unhappiness.

    • Tony Laux on July 19, 2019 at 2:35 PM

      “[A]ssuming no errors, god wouldn’t create intersex individuals–it may be only one in every 2000 people, but that’s something.”
      You could use this logic to state that all sorts of issues and abnormalities people are born with (from the merely irregular to the horrific and painful) are simply “how God made them,” but that’s a common misunderstanding of God’s will. Things are not as they should be, due to the disorder of sin on the cosmos; in the mystery of His will God apparently permits and works through all of it, but we need not say He actively wills it as simply a normal diversity in the species. At the same time He desires our well-being, and that normally through the medium of the sciences (medicine, therapy, etc.)

    • Adrian on July 20, 2019 at 2:28 AM

      “pretty happy with their transition” v “our hearts are restless until they rest in thee’. I think judging the happiness of others is in God’s perspective not our superficial experience of others.

  2. Maxwell Bing on July 19, 2019 at 4:25 PM

    I personally believe that, since there are about 500+ differences in the Helixical structure of the DNA strands, as well, as how men and women process thoughts; men are concerned with practicality, generally, whereas women are concerned with how it feels, how they feel, what feelings will ensue, etc. Though any individual all along this spectrum may tend to lean more in one direction or another, generally, these descriptions apply to men, and women.What, I believe is fluid, is not sex/gender; but, instead sexual preference. I’ve read of stories about how, a boy dated only girls, as a teen; but, as an adult, dated only other men. This, in popular lingo is known as “coming out of the closet,” or shortened, “coming out.” What I disagree with is this idea, that you are different as a child, than as an adult. But, what is obviously different is the sexual preference you choose, as you age, mature, and investigate a lifestyle alternative to the one you used to. Some adults even desire sex with men, and women, or some other version, different from the experiences they preferred as teens. So, though I don’t accept gender fluidity, I do accept a diversity of sexual preferences, in just one lifetime, based upon desires to explore one you might never have tried, or, only tried once. I do believe you reinforce the choice, every tme you choose to re-experience that variety of sexual expression; and, that this continual same selection can open you up further to pursuing that particular lifestyle, responding only to that stimulation, and abandoning any other option. Conversely, you can see that choice as just one of several options, like bisexuals do. I don’t think true love comes as a result of anything but a “sacred” marriage between a man and a woman. Any other combination is NOT sacred. It is, first sexual, then emotional, then intellectual, and then anatomical, or physical. It is an inauthentic copy of a sacred marriage, duplicating a true sacred relationship, vowing to each other before God, and witnesses, being pronounced by an attendant minster, priest, rabbi, or imam. I hace always believed there are only two sexes, male and female, and, there are no permutations of either, though some try to claim an unnatural, unprovable, untenable variation, for which there still is no scientific evidence in any confirmative method employed by researchers. These claimers of such always quote Alfred E. Kinsey, from the 1950’s who actually had no researcher’s credentials, and was a botanist, and an entomolgist; that is a plant, and insect scientist, whose theories have long since, been discredited, when it was found that his samples were very small, and he used himself as a subject. No reputable scientist ever does that. So, that is where most of the ideas, moderns who embrace them, came from originally; from a non-medical(not even an MD) amateur researcher without credentials as such, got these ideas from. He also created the idea that babies are sexually aroused, can have orgasms, and a whole lot of other nonsense, for which his conclusions are invalid, for the same reasons already stated. This tries to justify pedophilia. This will be the next step in the abbreviation of these folks, LGBTQ+P, and all the other now, affiliations, that are constantly being added to. Watch out folks, God is watching.

  3. Yvonne on October 23, 2019 at 2:14 PM

    We just sat in on a trial for a young boy whose mother claims he is transgender. The psychiatrist and endocrinologists claim it is a mental issue, not medical.

  4. Arthur E Zinn on February 29, 2020 at 5:42 PM

    I think a lot of the transgender problems are societies binary attitude for gender behavior. If it becomes known that a boy likes to wear girls clothes he will be ostracized by his family, friends and possible be beat to a pulp by the alpha males in his life. If boys who demonstrated classically female behavior were not so savagely attacked by friends, family and acquaintances they would not feel that they needed to change sex.

  5. Ms Maureen Mehlman on March 8, 2020 at 4:12 PM

    I have a teenage daughter who came home from school proclaiming there are now seven officially recognized “genders”. Her best fried is a male to female transgender. He “came out” to her first because he felt secure in their friendship and indeed she has been readily accepting of his dysphoric nature and refuses to consider that it may be more harmful in the long-run to encourage his rejection of his God given anatomy. She (like many young people today) see it as cruel and homophobic to not be supportive of the idea of gender fluidity. We don’t as a society normally encourage people iwith psychological disorders to embrace that disorder as some kind of evolutionary development. I think in time society will look to the current social hysteria as a time of group insanity. I absolutely believe it is more harmful to dismiss the idea of gender dysphoria as a dis-order,and discourage psychiatric treatment while we applaud the notion that we can simply choose to transition via dangerous experimental surgeries and toxic chemical therapies. That is truly social insanity. I must wonder then what forces are behind this whole movement and to what end? I cannot accept that homosexual behavior is biblically endorsed yet I likewise do not think that homosexuality itself is some treatable disease. I believe that people are born with a wide variety of illnesses and disabilities both physical and psychological in nature. I leave judgement of the soul to the only entity with the authority to judge. I am certain there will be practicing homosexuals accepted into heaven as there will be self appointed judges who honestly believe that cruelty and rejection are acceptable means of treatment for those they deem unworthy of love. The Christian ideal of loving one’s fellow man, of having compassion for the suffering of others and rejecting violence is what our Messiah is ALL about.
    My daughters best friend is a gender-dysphoric boy who we have all come to love. At first I wanted to make Jacob feel accepted and loved the way he is so I went along with calling him the female name he prefers (Joanna) and allowing him to dress up as a woman. I still want to do what is best by him because he is a sweet young man that I have come to love dearly. Then I listened to a web chat about the issue of gender dysphoria by a man who transitioned decades ago but later regretted the descisionandnow runs an organization dedicated to helping people with regrets over transitioning. I also listened to a variety of people on the whole issue of our new social embrace of same sex marriage, same sex married couples raising children. I have a niece who married another woman a couple years ago. They now have a daughter due to artificial insemination. I did not attend the wedding because that would be hypocritical of me. I did recently attend the child’s first birthday party because children however conceived are gifts from our Creator. There were a couple folks who spoke out against same sex parents, they later felt they didn’t have a “whole”family and felt pressured as children to say nothing critical about their home environments. We have all been sheparded into this new social construct where all things are okay and dissention is not tolerated. There is no room for expressing criticism, even acknowledging the blatant errors in our new social order. The bullying of any and all critics of the far left LGBTQ agenda is akin to the past bullying of LGBTQ people. Thanks to our uber politically correct social order, tolerance has been confused with endorsement. We are bullied into silence and required to express only endorsement of the new agenda.
    Well we can’t say we weren’t warned. There is a final book in our scriptures that spoke of such a time.

  6. HLI Staff on March 9, 2020 at 9:19 AM

    Great points all, Maureen!

  7. Kitty Kat on May 23, 2020 at 2:53 PM

    “God given sex”….. I didn’t realize this was a satirical website.

  8. Kitty Kat on May 23, 2020 at 2:54 PM

    I share this view of the issue.

    • Eric on April 27, 2021 at 7:50 AM

      Hey Kitty Kay I see what you said!

  9. Jubilee Nunn on June 1, 2020 at 6:04 AM

    I’m a transgender woman, and I feel truly sorry for you. Your an ignorant bigot who ignores the scientific literature to cling to your Bronze Age mythology. As a writer and researcher I cannot believe you would put your name on such trashy articles. You need to look at the unbiased research that is available.

    Paul R. McHugh M.D. has been discredited by John Hopkins University as well as the whole of the scientific community. Walt Heyer has been on a campaign of misinformation to attack the transgender community. .

    • Fact check on September 6, 2020 at 7:30 AM

      Nah bro, you’re still and will forever be a dude

    • Anika on September 25, 2020 at 4:52 PM

      I noticed a pattern! As you pointed out, Paul R. McHugh M.D. has been discredited. The scientist who claimed that vaccines cause autism was also discredited. A lot of the scientists people use to support these kinds of views aren’t legitimate scientists. Btw you are a perfectly real and valid woman no matter what anyone on this site says.

      • Amelia on July 5, 2021 at 9:41 PM

        You can never change your DNA. You are still a man… Sorry but you can look like a woman but your DNA is XY.

    • Helena on April 25, 2021 at 12:18 PM

      You think she is still a man, but she knows that she is a woman. Who is right? She is much more intelligent than you!

    • Rowena on April 29, 2021 at 4:07 PM

      “Bronze Age mythology” I’m sorry. I didn’t realize the truth had an expiration date.

    • Ruth on July 13, 2021 at 1:46 PM

      How can you respond this way to a respectful article, that is aiming for nothing but the best solution for people identifying as transgender? Your response is extremely demeaning. No one should be called an ignorant bigot for stating what they believe in. What I don’t understand is how people who claim to be a victim of disrespect, can be so utterly disrespectful and even aggressive to others themselves.

      • Dan Bilzerian on July 30, 2021 at 2:02 PM

        It is incredibly ironic that you are calling this individual disrespectful when the article itself is disrespectful to the individual, and then being disrespectful to the individual yourself.

        Invalidation of someone’s identity that is the opposite of what reputable studies and medical advice say (hint: none of which is represented well in the article)? Oh, that’s okay. But call someone a bigot? Oh no, that crosses the line!

        Come on.

  10. Bill on July 7, 2020 at 9:30 AM

    Yes but just it also said out of the 8% overall that switched back, 62% only reverted temporarily so presumably didn’t regret it for long. And “only 5% of those who had de-transitioned reported that they had done so because they realized that gender transition was not for them, representing 0.4%” overall. The rest of the 8% was due to pressure or harassment from family, spouses or employers.

  11. Mehz on July 16, 2020 at 6:30 PM

    Shame on you!!
    After all your education you resort to ‘we as christian’
    You need help!

    • Lucca Mutta on September 26, 2020 at 10:14 PM

      This article is not transphobic at all. The article does not hate transgenders purely because of who they are. Stop throwing the word „transphobic“ around. You don’t even know what it means.

    • Deborah Dean on April 6, 2021 at 6:28 PM

      Aw, to be 17 and the most intelligent person in the room….

  12. wish it was Helena on October 4, 2020 at 8:13 AM

    I’m a guy in 30’s with gender dysphoria since the age of 3, always felt something wrong with me. I honestly doubt that many would want to revert back to their gender. If you truly have this problem, you would never really want to change back. Well perhaps some would… maybe less than 1% want to change back.
    If you don’t have this problem, you cannot imagine how agonizing and mentally painful it is. I have not changed my gender only due to the cost and my tall manly outlooks 6.3 ~191 cm tall. Deep inside I know I’m a woman and feel very sad about this. Hate absolutely everything about masculinity, manly things, doing manly things, being put into wrong roles. I think…act..am into all the things a woman would be.
    I see it’s a religious website so I might as well say that I spend many hours a day reading scriptues and in prayer, it’s the only thing that has kept me somewhat sane. Still every single day of my life, I wish the same thing… if only I could change my gender, not be so tall, look feminine and be a girl.

    • Mindy on February 27, 2021 at 12:43 PM

      Thank you for writing this.
      I feel deep pain from your statements. I also believe you are doing the right thing turning to read the Scriptures and be in prayer. I regret the agonizing and mental pain that you are suffering. I know that Paul asked the Lord to take away an issue that he was dealing with, and the Lords answer was “my grace is sufficient”. The Lord never did take away whatever was ailing Paul, but Paul‘s behavior shows us the right attitude. And I would like to praise your right attitude.I will pray for you Helena that you may find some peace which ever way you decide to go.

    • Helena on April 25, 2021 at 12:07 PM

      I think that our society puts too much emphasis on the way we look. Too bad! There are so many narcissists out there. I think most people do not understand the LGBTQ community. May God give them more insight and therefore tolerance of people that are different from them.

    • Helena on April 25, 2021 at 12:24 PM

      People in the LGBTQ community are misunderstood. My God help others be more understanding and tolerant.

    • Laura on June 12, 2021 at 11:11 AM

      Why cant you still, even without surgery, let go of traditional male roles? In reality, you can be and do whatever you want. Many men and women have rejected traditional roles and live life accordingly. I have to say, I’m not a huge fan of surgery…then again, that’s not my call. Good luck to you! <3

  13. Anon on October 19, 2020 at 6:45 AM

    I’m so glad that you mentioned the alarmingly high rates of suicide that trans people face. As Catholics I’m sure you greatly value the human life, and wish to preserve it in any way you can. Although I’m not religious, I completely agree that we should work towards lowering these confronting statistics. Perhaps a way that this could be done is by allowing trans people to exist freely without pitting them against “gods will” and making them feel like they are abominations. It seems strange to me that you focus on the plight of the 4-11% of people who regret there transition, as opposed to the 40% of people who are suicidal. Surely if you were wishing to improve the quality of life for people and ease their suffering- the larger proportion would be the starting point?

  14. Janelle on October 28, 2020 at 12:05 AM

    Simple biology of chromosomes don’t determine sex assigned at birth. Hormones play a large role.

  15. Frank E Dahl on October 31, 2020 at 1:24 PM

    Totally agree!

  16. Dennis Lund on November 8, 2020 at 12:09 AM

    Thank you for your valuable information!

  17. Tandy Aye on November 8, 2020 at 12:10 AM

    Your article provides very important information for my work. Thank you!

  18. Jaana Virta on November 10, 2020 at 11:42 PM

    I am doing lots of research on gender issues. Thank you for your helpful information! Take courage and keep up your good work. Don’t mind all the negative comments.

  19. Grace on November 12, 2020 at 1:31 PM

    Thank you for your information. I wish to turn my ideas, my researchs, and all my works to better understand this issue that I am struggling with.

  20. Lavery on November 18, 2020 at 7:20 PM

    Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Lord Jesus please help me to follow YOU the giver of the true life. I want to turn away from my way of transgender to YOUR way.

  21. Maxe Crandall on November 18, 2020 at 7:47 PM

    Because of my study in this area, your article provides very important information. We all need to learn more about it. Thank you.

  22. Leland on November 27, 2020 at 6:18 PM

    You have given us very important information. Thank you for speaking out the truth. May the truth set us free from the lie and bondage of transgender. Our hope is in Jesus Christ

  23. Leland on November 27, 2020 at 6:59 PM

    Thank you for your website information. This is very valuable for our organization.

  24. Jo on November 30, 2020 at 1:33 AM

    Thank you for your website. I fully support your work. Please pray I change how I best help my patients.

  25. Steven Rascon Berkeley on December 28, 2020 at 7:01 PM

    Jesus please help me stop believing lies in transgender.

  26. YL on December 30, 2020 at 1:49 PM

    How do you get in touch with the person who is having an organization helping detransitioned persons?

  27. Stanley on February 23, 2021 at 1:29 AM

    Lord Jesus, please help me turn away from my sin of transgender lies. I want to follow you. You are the way, the truth and the life. Please pray for me.

  28. Cas on March 1, 2021 at 10:52 PM

    Thank you so much for your work! I support you 100%

  29. Li Zhang on March 3, 2021 at 5:01 PM

    Thank you for your website! Please keep me informed. My work needs your help and needs this very important information.

    • HLI Staff on March 5, 2021 at 9:52 PM

      Thank you, Li. If you have specific questions or need additional information, please reach out to us at hli@hli.org and we’ll make sure your question gets to our Director of Research for an answer.

  30. Danielle Coe on March 29, 2021 at 3:47 AM

    I think that is a very good point Daniel!

  31. Dennis on April 1, 2021 at 12:37 PM

    And not to mention the fact that 62% of all of those people transition back again. So cut these by 2/3 and you have the real number.

  32. Gerry man on April 6, 2021 at 4:06 PM

    God is not real and science should not be political.

  33. Kaʻuhane .K on May 17, 2021 at 12:15 PM

    I agree!!

  34. Declan on May 31, 2021 at 10:36 AM

    I stopped reading after you said “god given sex”. You can’t even prove a god or gods exist, let alone make a ridiculous assertion like this. What a nonsensical article. You’re a joke.

  35. Laura on June 12, 2021 at 10:58 AM

    Very wsll said!

  36. Me on June 20, 2021 at 3:29 AM

    You know you won’t make it to your 20th birthday without removing your breasts? Stop and think for a moment, does this sound like a statement made of someone with sound mind? This article is far from bigoted. This article shows far more compassion for people with your struggle than the mainstream narrative. I truly hope you find your peace. You’re perfect just the way you are.

  37. Helen on July 8, 2021 at 4:20 PM

    Thank you for this excellent article. We are all being deluged with the misinformation and lies of the media and our poor children are being indoctrinated in school about this “gender dysphoria”. Why so, when this type of mental illness affects such a small percentage of our population? The true statistics of the heightened future problems of those who transition either pharmaceutically or surgically need to be widely circulated to the entire population. People must begin to realize that the lies they are being fed are NOT the truth, and that we do need to love these affected people, as God loves them. We, as a nation as well as a world need to come up with a better plan to help our brothers and sisters. And the media and the governments need to realize that we are not the hateful people they have made us out to be. May God show us the way!

  38. HLI reader on July 12, 2021 at 6:49 PM

    It’s clear that we need to eliminate these degenerates before gender ideology eliminates us.

  39. UofT FLORENCE Ashley on July 20, 2021 at 7:26 PM

    Thank you so much for your wonderful information! Please keep up your good work. Please pray for me.

  40. Caleb Murdock on August 12, 2021 at 9:26 PM

    “The Hill recently reported on a 2020 survey that polled more than 15,000 American citizens aged 18 years or older. According to the survey, ‘Within Generation Z, the youngest adult demographic who are aged between 18 to 23 in 2020 … two percent identified as gay, lesbian, or transgender.'”

    That is clearly incorrect. I don’t know why pollsters can’t figure this out, but when you ask people outright if they are gay, they almost always say ‘no’. No one wants to admit it in person. This may be doubly true for the younger generation because kids have been using the word “gay” to mean “stupid” for a couple decades now, so young gay people don’t want to be associated with that word.

    My estimate is that the percentage of the population which is exclusively gay is somewhere between 6% and 8%, and that another 5% to 10% of straight men will allow themselves to be gratified by a man (less for straight women).

    Human Life International: DON’T put me on your mailing list.

  41. Paul a Stone Williams Left Hand Church on August 16, 2021 at 12:19 AM

    Thank you for this excellent article!

  42. Mallory Ortberg on August 16, 2021 at 1:09 AM

    Thank you!

  43. Schiavo on August 20, 2021 at 2:08 PM

    Thank you!

  44. Olaf Hektoen on August 20, 2021 at 9:01 PM

    Though I d like to get my GRA surgery, some scary thoughts of regretting it come to my mind from time to time

  45. Euclid Joy Soringa Leland Stanford Jr. on August 26, 2021 at 2:53 AM

    Thank you so much for your research!

  46. Angu on September 23, 2021 at 12:30 PM

    I am writing to you on behalf of a group of detransitioned women regarding Dr Jack Turban. We are deeply concerned with Dr Turban’s disparagement of psychiatric intervention and exploratory psychotherapy, his singular endorsement of affirmative therapies for people with gender dysphoria, and his dismissive and derogatory treatment of those of us who detransitioned due to transition regret.

    We are but a few of many that have been the victims of this type of cavalier attitude. We all suffered from gender dysphoria at one point (and some still do), and were led to believe that our best chance of treating our dysphoria was to medically transition. As it turned out, this was not the case. As a result, we now have to live with bodies and voices that have been irreversibly changed (and in some cases damaged) by hormones and surgeries, when what we needed was a compassionate and thoughtful exploration of our gender distress through talk therapy. Some of us will now never be able to have children and many of us live with great distress and regret every day.

    Not only did physicians like Dr Turban fail us by sending us down a singular path of transition, they are now letting us down once again by disparaging our experiences and even our existence, when they should be providing us with support to help us heal from our unnecessary medical transitions. The fact that Dr Turban is a psychiatrist at Stanford and uses his credentials to promote his reckless approach is especially troubling, as he has been granted a large and influential media platform. As we see more and more distressed young people following in our footsteps of a rushed medical gender transition, in a few years, we fear the consequences of Dr Turban’s activism will be catastrophic and visible to all.

    Dr Turban does not hide his disregard for the role of psychotherapy in treating gender distress, and his singular belief in medical and surgical approaches to treating gender dysphoria, whatever its cause may be. Appearing on the GenderGP Podcast episode ‘Exploring Detransition with Dr Jack Turban’ (2021), hosted by Dr Helen Webberley, a UK physician criminally-convicted for running an illegal clinic, Dr Turban says:

    “There’s no psychiatric intervention for gender dysphoria. There are medical interventions for gender dysphoria, if you will. And it’s not the rule like right, how the psychiatrist’s going to treat gender dysphoria, they’re not like they’re not going to make that go away. …. The only way that it’s ever been proposed that psychiatry can do that was through conversion therapy, which obviously doesn’t work:”
    As you will read later in this letter, many detransitioners report that they strongly wish they had received exploratory psychotherapy rather than affirmation, thus Dr Turban’s insinuation that this would be tantamount to conversion therapy is highly disturbing.

    Dr Turban describes detransition, in the GenderGP podcast, as having “become this really awful word… I feel like 90% of the time when you read it, it’s really being weaponized.” The claim that discussing detransition is problematic due to the topic being “weaponized” has been used to shame and silence detransitioners who try to tell our stories. This bullying of a very vulnerable group is unacceptable, and we find it incredibly worrying that Dr Turban would participate in the accusation that detransition is “being weaponized,” furthering the bullying of detransitioned individuals. This is not only a matter of rhetoric. Many of us are unable to receive any meaningful support from the mental health community. Instead of helping us heal, many mental health professionals informed by the likes of Dr. Turban continue to steer us toward medical transition, unable to accept our lived experience. There are more and more people like us sharing their stories of transition regret openly online, and we implore you to look these up.

    Dr Turban goes on to say:

    “when you say detransition people usually think that means like transition regret. It brings up this idea that somebody transitioned, then realize like, oh my god, that was a huge mistake. I’m actually cisgender, I regret every domain of gender affirmation I’ve ever had. And as I’m sure you know, that’s not the reality of the situation.”
    Dr Turban is, again, completely dismissing those of us who have experienced transition regret. As detransitioned woman, we are deeply hurt that Dr Turban would find it appropriate to suggest that our pain and distress is not a reality. We do, in fact, regret every domain of gender affirmation we ever had and the irreversible changes that medical transition did to us that we must now live with for the rest of our lives. It is, therefore, highly unprofessional and deeply offensive to see comments like this from a fellow at Stanford.

    At the same time as Dr Turban dismisses our existence, he also claims to represent us in research, but his bias is clear: the goal is to minimize detransition because it contradicts Dr. Turban’s professional aspirations to promote transgender medical and surgical interventions. In the GenderGP podcast he also says:

    “We have a paper that hopefully is coming out soon, where we took the data from the 2015 US Transgender Survey. So this was a survey of over 27,000 transgender adults in the United States. And we found that of those who had transitioned in some way, don’t quote me on that exact number, but it’s something like 13% of them said that at some point in their life, they had detransitioned. And when we looked at why they did that, the vast majority of them, like close to 90%, I think, had detransitioned due to some external factor.”
    We bring to your attention that the 2015 USTS survey that Dr Turban repeatedly uses for his research is an online convenience survey that was promoted by transition advocacy sites. We believe in and support transgender rights and trans people, but respectfully submit that this survey, subtitled “Injustice at Every Turn,” which is full of biased questions that promote a political agenda, serves as a poor base for respectable research. Dr Turban previously attempted to use this survey to claim that psychotherapy leads to suicide; his problematic analysis and conclusions were thoroughly outlined in a rebuttal by Roberto D’Angelo et al. in ‘One Size Does Not Fit All: In Support of Psychotherapy for Gender Dysphoria’ (2020), to which Dr.Turban never replied, even through he had the chance to do so. Instead, he attacked the researchers on Twitter. Dr Turban also used the same survey to attempt to show that puberty blockers saved lives. Another rebuttal showed just how flawed that piece of research was (‘Puberty Blockers and Suicidality in Adolescents Suffering from Gender Dysphoria’ (2020) by Michael Biggs). Dr Turban failed to respond to that critique in the scientific area, but did go on media circuit to promote his deeply flawed conclusions.

    Most recently, Dr Turban misused this problematic sample to discredit detransition experiences in his research, ‘Factors Leading to “Detransition” Among Transgender and Gender Diverse People in the United States: A Mixed-Methods Analysis’ (2021). Dr. Turban did not seem troubled by the fact that 100% of the respondents were transgender-identified and did not identify as detransitioners. This is an expert from his study:

    These [detransition due to internal factors] experiences did not necessarily reflect regret regarding past gender affirmation, and were presumably temporary, as all of these respondents subsequently identified as TGD, an eligibility requirement for study participation.
    Dr. Turban’s conclusions were that detransition is largely a temporary phenomenon, happens in response to external pressures, and does not really represent a problem for those who detransitioned. These conclusions are highly flawed and ignore those of us who have detransitioned due to transition regret, and who were excluded from the survey for no longer being transgender-identified.

    In comparison, recent detransition research conducted within the actual detransition community (‘Detransition-Related Needs and Support: A Cross-Sectional Online Survey’ (2021) by Elie Vandenbussche) found very different results: that most of us detransition due to the internal realization that transition was not what we needed, that transition did not help and can actually make things worse for us, and that we found other non-invasive ways to alleviate our dysphoria. Further, the research showed that detransitioners expressed the need to find alternative treatments to deal with their gender dysphoria, but reported that it was nearly impossible to talk about it within LGBT+ spaces and in the medical sphere.

    Vandenbussche found that most detransitioners currently are in dire need of psychological support on matters such as gender dysphoria, co-morbid conditions, feelings of regret, social/physical changes and internalized homophobic or sexist prejudices. The research confirmed that detransitionres experience prejudice when working with medical and mental health systems, which Dr. Turban’s vocal activism directly emboldens and reinforces.

    We feel it important to add that in May 2021, the Karolinska Hospital in Sweden issued a new policy statement regarding the treatment of gender-dysphoric minors. This policy has ended the practice of prescribing puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones to gender-dysphoric patients under the age of 18. Finland also revised its treatment guidelines in June 2020, prioritizing psychological interventions and support over medical interventions. Major changes are also underway in the UK, as the NHS has convened a “Cass Review” to examine the practice of transition for young people and the evidence that underlies it.

    Thus, it seems evident that there is a growing concern over the proliferation of medical interventions that have a low certainty of benefits, while carrying a significant potential for medical harm. It is worrying that Dr Turban does not seem to demonstrate the professional curiosity to rethink his endorsement of medical transition for minors and his dismay at psychotherapy and its role in the care of gender dysphoric individuals of all ages.

    We are also deeply concerned by Dr Turban’s activism to suppress the debate on the proper care for gender dysphoria in the public arena. On May 25, 2021, Dr Turban tweeted the following:

    “When I spoke with @60Minutes about their “detransition” story and asked where they found the people to profile – they refused to tell me and became defensive. We still don’t know if they searched for people on TERF forums, and transparency would be appreciated.”
    We bring to your attention that “TERF” (an acronym for “trans-exclusionary radical feminist”) is a pejorative term, and that Dr Turban’s use of it to smear and dismiss the experiences of the detransitioners who appeared on 60 Minutes is incredibly hurtful. That a fellow at Stanford would criticise 60 Minutes for having a brief segment featuring detransitioners has many of us very concerned that, should one of his patients experience transition regret and subsequently decide to detransition, Dr Turban would be unfit to help them due to his hostility towards the subject.

    Therefore, we are deeply concerned with how Dr Turban may practice as a clinician, specifically how he may treat a transgender person struggling with transition regret or a detransitioner seeking to discuss their regret or reverse their transition. His comments on the GenderGP podcast, his flawed use of the USTS, and his hostility towards any discussion of transition regret are all highly problematic and in need of addressing. We ask Stanford to speak out for more thoughtful approaches because, as it stands now, Stanford appears to be silently endorsing Dr Turban’s harmful claims that exploratory psychotherapy is tantamount to conversion therapy and that hormones and surgeries are the only appropriate treatment for people with gender dysphoria.

    I received affirmative care at my gender clinic. I received no exploratory talk therapy. I injected myself with cross-sex hormones and underwent a double mastectomy. I now suffer from transition regret, and have detransitioned as a result. The distress and harm that I have endured because of the knee-jerk affirmative approach that people like Dr Turban advocates for has been immense. I implore you, on behalf of the detransitioned women who co-signed this letter and myself, to please consider its contents carefully – we wish only to help the many others like us.

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