Effeminate son (II) the sequel

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    May 09, 2008 6:02 PM GMT
    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=90273278

    This article deals with parents who are willing to stop their child's puberty to keep their bodies and their gender from conflicting.

    Would you let your children have the treatment if they wanted?
  • ShawnTX

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    May 09, 2008 6:45 PM GMT
    Wow, I think these parents should be applauded. Yes, I can understand the controversy surrounding this treatment, but since it's reversible if the patient chooses to not take the opposite sex hormones and remain in the body there were born with, I think this may just be teh best option.

    What other options are there? Years of therapy, mood altering drugs, depression, etc. At least this seems to be a way of giving the child some freedom and options.

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    May 09, 2008 7:00 PM GMT
    Everyone should see the documentary Middlesexes narrated by Gore Vidal. There is a child much like the one in this story. It is both heartbreaking to think of what these kids will go through but inspiring to see parents take it in stride out of love.
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    May 09, 2008 11:11 PM GMT
    huh. i hope no one is offended by this but i really don't think the moral solution is so clear. This is probably just me being in the early stages of accepting my sexuality but here it goes?

    Whats the real difference between taking hormones to make you look like the gender you wish to be as opposed to taking hormones to make you the sexuality you wish to be?
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    May 09, 2008 11:26 PM GMT
    because taking hormones to look like the gender you wish to be IS the sexuality you wish to be. the trans-person isn't changing their sexuality by changing their gender, s/he is AFFIRMING it.
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    May 09, 2008 11:41 PM GMT
    Uhm, this is going to upset some, but oh well...

    Kids obsess about a lot of things. Tantrums are thrown, tears shed and mean things are said. But, there is and isn't an appropriate time for dress-up, be it boys', girls' , cartoon character, or any other fantasy dress. Boundaries need to be set and order maintained as much as is possible. Balance should be the goal. The parents seem to have very willingly given into their son's every demand, including referring to him as her.

    Delaying a biologic change, the influx of hormones -- that's science taking over when nature should do it's part. If HE wants to become a SHE when he is grown up, that's one thing. Hormones to lessen how much of a HE he becomes -- that's just plain wrong. What happens if HE changes his mind about becoming a SHE? Are they just gonna pump him full of testosterone and hope for the best? You mess with nature this much and you are going to pay the price. I just hope he doesn't turn into some half-tranny, half unicorn, man-beast with flowing blonde hair.
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    May 09, 2008 11:42 PM GMT
    Thanks for posting this, part 1 was also so so interesting ... thank you!
  • ShawnTX

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    May 10, 2008 3:12 AM GMT
    pdxboxer, I completely respect your opinion on this, and I totally understand what you're saying.

    In my opinion, a grown adult man or woman that chooses to have sex reassignment surgery is science stepping in doing natures work as well. I think this may be a better way of beginning the process psychologically and physically.

    I think the biggest issue surrounding this is not science vs. nature but the moral and ethical implications of this treatment. Legally, children of that age have very little rights in determining what's best for them, so I can understand how some people would be against letting a child that age make such a monumental decision.

    That article only gives us the smallest insight into this families lives. But I can say, after dealing with this for 8 years, I can certainly understand how her parents would agree to this treatment.

    Whatever the outcome, I hope this family and the child come out of this ok.
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    May 10, 2008 3:15 AM GMT
    My friend Madeleine (formerly Doug) told me that when she underwent the surgery, all she felt was relief that she was finally able to be what nature intended.
    I understand this to be a common feeling among transsexuals.
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    May 10, 2008 6:08 AM GMT
    What sorta worries me about the children, and i know i can't tell this but im just trying to gleam information from the article, is that they don't seem to be comfortable with the fact that they are the opposite gender.

    If i may make a horrible analogy:
    what if a child was born straight but ferverntly believed they should be gay. The child cries unless its mother lets it wear a rainbow tshirt and listen to madonna. Would it be moral to have the child change their sexual orientation by hormones? Is this situation completely analogous to the transgendered children?

    A healthy person is neither strongly male or strongly female. If gender is and artificial construct of society then its probably not one that is completely healthy. Being very masculine or very feminine like these children worries me. These children seem very adverse to things they perceive as masculine. I would think that a normal girl if presented with only with a masculine toys to play with would still play with them. I also know young girls who seem to never wear a dress and it doesn't kill them like these people.
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    May 10, 2008 9:55 AM GMT
    Hormones won't change your orientation. They got my testosterone too high when I was first diagnosed with hypoganadism. Too much doesn't make you straight but it will make you willing to fuck anything that moves.

    carthesis saidhuh. i hope no one is offended by this but i really don't think the moral solution is so clear. This is probably just me being in the early stages of accepting my sexuality but here it goes?

    Whats the real difference between taking hormones to make you look like the gender you wish to be as opposed to taking hormones to make you the sexuality you wish to be?
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    May 10, 2008 2:40 PM GMT
    My neighbor Kyrstin says the same thing. She's post op and fabulous. She's a straight woman now and she's happy. I'm happy for her.

    The gist of the article however falls into a period where the transgendered person is a minor and their fate rests with the parents and their physician. This must be a tough decision for them. I don't know what I would have done at the time when my sons were just entering adolescence. I would like to think that I would have followed a path that would be best for them but I didn't have to so, I'm not sure. I wasn't tested.

    I am glad to see research in this area.

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    May 10, 2008 4:35 PM GMT
    well okay then assuming we could in some way reliably alter sexuality...
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    May 10, 2008 4:42 PM GMT
    I'm quite happy with mine. No reason to change it.

    As for that treatment, that's some radical shit. Not something to venture into lightly for any parent, even the most open minded. But putting the child's peace of mind and ultimate happiness first is an amazingly generous action and shows a true love so few connect with in life.
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    May 10, 2008 4:50 PM GMT
    JustJohn saidHormones won't change your orientation. They got my testosterone too high when I was first diagnosed with hypoganadism. Too much doesn't make you straight but it will make you willing to fuck anything that moves.

    [quote][cite]carthesis said[/cite]huh. i hope no one is offended by this but i really don't think the moral solution is so clear. This is probably just me being in the early stages of accepting my sexuality but here it goes?

    Whats the real difference between taking hormones to make you look like the gender you wish to be as opposed to taking hormones to make you the sexuality you wish to be?
    [/quote]


    I don't think he's trying to say horomones can change your orientation. He's trying to present a situation parallel to the boys who want to be girls.

    I think he's right. Children may want a lot of things at one point or another but the question revealing that relavence is this: do you remember your daily routine when you were 5-8 years old?

    I rest my case.
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    May 11, 2008 1:07 PM GMT
    The Portman clinic has treated 124 kids since 1989. It requires children to live as the gender they were born with. And 80 percent of its patients — once grown — chose as adults to keep their biological gender.

    The opposite outcome was seen by the researchers in the Netherlands who first developed the hormone-blocking treatment. They have treated 100 patients and all chose — as adults — to live as the opposite sex.


    I'm curious. The Portman clinic is in London. Why the vast difference?

    Either the London clinic is not screening their patients enough or London is more homophobic than the Netherlands which caused the respondents to change their minds.

    I personally would support it. If they are indeed transgender then these treatments would make their lives so much easier. Not having to deal with the judgment of society.

    The side-effect (infertility) only happens when they decide to take the next stage (in which case, they are sure that they are transgender) so it's a win-win situation.

    It enables the child (and the parents) to think more about what he/she really wants. In this way, the parents spare the child the humiliation of being an obvious transgender later on in life. The child can be himself/herself without it being obvious that he/she was not born that way. If it spares my child the pain of ostracization, why the hell not?!

    pdxboxer, you need to read it more closely, the treatment BUYS TIME. It enables the child to wait until s/he is 16 and has thought about it really hard. If s/he changes his mind s/he simply stops the treatments and allow his own hormones to continue developing him into a man. If s/he is absolutely sure s/he is transgender then s/he takes the estrogens.

    WITHOUT the treatment, a boy will still grow up to be a man, whether s/he wants it or not.

    WITH the treatment, the boy will have to decide at 16 (And not 10, like the rest of us) whether s/he want to be a man or a woman.

    In both cases, s/he can change his mind and still grow up a normal male. If s/he maintains her transexuality, s/he will be infertile BUT closer to the body s/he wanted to be in anyway.

    carthesis, the sister said it best:

    Melina, who is 14, says she sometimes thinks about what it would be like if she woke up every day to a body that was slowing turning male. If she were growing in ways that felt alien and frightening.

    "To go through the process of the gender that you're really not ... that must be the most scariest most disgusting thing ... I can't even imagine what that's like," she says.


    I disagree. Gender is strongly biological. Okay, imagine yourself waking up and growing boobs. Would you still say that you're still a man? Of course you're still a man inside, but WTF, you have boobs?! That's probably the way transgenders see it.

    (Man I wish the FTMs here would speak up more icon_sad.gif But I understand why though).

    What you and pdxboxer seem to be against is more in the hormone treatments because it is 'not natural'. Well, it isn't natural. But then so is insulin for diabetics, or antibiotics, or HIV medication, or antidepressants.

    The human body, like it or not, is a chemically driven machine with electrical cybernetics. LOL There is nothing WRONG with manipulating it for better results, we've been doing that (albeit crudely - make-up, body modification, tattoos, etc) for millenia.

    Not everything 'natural' is good for you, same goes for things 'unnatural', but this isn't one of those, so ease up on the purist thing. icon_wink.gif
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    May 11, 2008 3:23 PM GMT
    personally if i woke up as a women for no rational explanation and i knew there was no real way (by which i mean safes to change myself back I would learn to accept my gender. I think it would be about as hard as it is for me to accept my sexuality.
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    May 12, 2008 10:40 AM GMT
    carthesis saidpersonally if i woke up as a women for no rational explanation and i knew there was no real way (by which i mean safes to change myself back I would learn to accept my gender. I think it would be about as hard as it is for me to accept my sexuality.


    But that's because your gay! You'll still be humping men. icon_wink.gif LOL