April 16, 2018
The Trials and Tribulations of the Transgenders
In today's public dialogue, there's a lot of talk back and forth over the transgender issue. And why not? Transgenderism has been made into a cause celebre by the cultural elite. Many, myself included, view this as part of the ongoing effort by the Left to separate America from God and tradition. For that reason, it is worthwhile to delve a little deeper into the issue than what is normally provided by what is claimed by transgender people themselves.
To begin with, the clinical term for transgenderism is 'gender dysphoria.' It is defined as the condition of feeling one's emotional and psychological identity as male or female to be opposite to one's biological sex. The American Psychiatric Association says this conflict in gender affects people in different ways. There are those who want to express their perceived gender in their behavior, mannerisms and dress. Accordingly, some male-to-female transgenders seem to be satisfied cross-dressing, painting their finger and toe nails and whatnot. Others however, opt to go further with hormone treatments and what is delicately called transition sex-change surgeries.
The Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), the bible of the psychiatric community, provides guidelines for diagnosing gender dysphoria for 1) children and 2) adults and adolescents. For the latter, it boils down to a strong desire to be of the other sex and to have society to accept that as so. It is gratifying at least to see that psychiatrists recognize gender dysphoria as a mental disorder.
Unfortunately, the psychiatric treatment for gender dysphoria calls for alleviating the anxiety associated with this mental disorder rather than addressing its core issue. It's as if a patient thinks he's a dog, and part of his treatment would be to put a collar on him and give him a few Milk Bone dog biscuits as a reward for good behavior. Yes, that's an exaggeration, but it illustrates the point.
Current treatment for gender dysphoria is premised on the belief that cosmetic changes will relieve the symptoms and hence cure the disorder. For a male-to-female transition, sex change surgery is called vaginoplasty. This YouTube animated link of the vaginoplasty operation can make men queasy to watch, for it is an extreme re-engineering of the male sex organ. As you can well imagine, this operation is not just complicated; it is also irreversible. For a female-to-male transition, the surgical procedures can be gleaned from this short YouTube animation.
It should not come as a surprise that these radical procedures can lead to many horrific complications and often require follow-up surgeries and many sessions on a psychiatrist's couch. This link gives the story of two people going male-to-female, two going the other way, and the post-op problems they've had. Take the case of Hunter. Of this male-to-female person, it is written: "Instead of the vagina she had always longed for, Hunter has what she called a 'fibrous lump between my legs and a colostomy bag.' Everything she read online and in an information packet, everything her surgeon told her, led her to believe the chances of complications were at best remote." Or take the case of Gary who went the female-to-male route and now needs two catheters and complains about not being able to pee standing up.
Interestingly, all four of these people aren't all that sorry about having their surgeries. At most, they seem to regret picking the wrong surgeon. This speaks volumes of the depth of their mental instability.
Transgender genital surgery is dangerous. And for what? It is reported that many of the recipients of genital operations admit to not being cured of their gender dysphoria.
In addition to surgery there is hormone therapy. That is, female-to-male trans people are given testosterone shots while male-to-female ones get estrogen. Both of these hormones are powerful actors in the human body where they affect a myriad of chemical reactions. A normal female will have some testosterone in her and a normal male will have have some estrogen. To be healthy, these hormones must be kept in proper balance for the gender involved. Playing God by monkeying around with hormones is asking for trouble. Perhaps that explains why those undergoing hormone treatment for cosmetic reasons experience high rates of depression, anger and general unhappiness. A traditionalist would say that they people are at war with their bodies.
In an ironic twist further aggravating the situation is the fact that hormone therapy does not lead to much of an appearance change in adults. What research is available on this subject indicates that for it to be effective, the treatment must begin before puberty is reached. For adults, it's usually too late.
As has often times been noted, all the surgery and hormone treatments in the world cannot change the chromosomal makeup of each of the trillion of cells in a person's body. For males, the chromosome pair is XY and females it's XX. Given that fact and the problems in transitioning into another gender with surgery and/or hormone treatments, it is little wonder then that those with gender dysphoria have a 41% rate for suicides or attempted suicides compared with just 4.6% of the general population.
For a particularly enlightening view of the absurdity of transgendering, here's a story from the Federalist website of one person who tried it while on active military service and his negative views on the matter. Jamie Shupe writes,
"The sex change process is inherently and fatally flawed because even if science eventually proves transgender people are more than the sum of their currently visible and measurable birth biology, this would make them intersex -- a mixture of male and female. It would not make transgender persons the complete opposite sex.Nor should the military be involved in attempting to medically shoehorn trans service members into the opposite sex, something at which they can't possibly succeed. Because of the 'at best' case of mixed male and female biology in this scenario, the transgender person will always be plagued by gender dysphoria. It's the equivalent of claiming a mixed-race person can be made white or black by a medical treatment."
Shupe uses a useful term here that I haven't heard before in describing transgender people -- intersex. This implies that these poor souls who undergo sex change surgeries and heavy hormone treatments are neither fish nor fowl. Biologically and scientifically speaking, that is correct.
And 'poor souls' also describes many transgender people. These people have a problem (gender dysphoria), and they are being encouraged by powerful cultural forces in society to mutilate and distort their bodies in trying to become something they can't. Of course, those who are egging them on have their own agenda which is not the best interest of the gender-conflicted. But this is a common tactic of the progressive Left. Causalities on the road to Utopia do not trouble them in the least. As Joe Stalin said, you have the break a few eggs to make an omelet.