Home / News / Culture Watch / Psychologists resign citing over-diagnosis of childhood gender issues

Psychologists resign citing over-diagnosis of childhood gender issues

Thirty-five leading British psychologists have resigned from government “gender” clinics in the last three years it has been revealed, with many expressing concern over gender transitioning of children. They claim children are being  “over-diagnosed” as gender dysphoric and “over-medicalized” with treatments like puberty blockers, according to an investigation by Sky News.

They have left at a time when the number of children being treated for gender dysphoria, a condition where the child thinks he or she should be the opposite sex, has skyrocketed from 77 cases a decade ago to nearly 2600 cases this year. The UK National Health Service’s (NHS) Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) reports a waiting list of nearly 3000, queuing up for as long as two years to get an appointment with a doctor.

Six former GIDS staffers charge that too many children have been put on puberty-blocking drugs when they should not have been given the diagnosis of being gender dysphoric in the first place.

One doctor who wished to remain anonymous, told Sky News, “We are extremely concerned about the consequences for young people… For those of us who previously worked in the service (National Health Service), we fear that we have had front row seats to a medical scandal.”

Doctors interviewed by Sky News described a health service where they felt pressure to pursue drug treatment rather than to treat patients psychologically; any reticence could brand them as “transphobic.”

One psychologist said, “The alarm started ringing for me… I didn’t feel able to voice my concerns, or when I did I was often shut down by other affirmative clinicians. Looking back there are young people who I now wouldn’t necessarily put on medication.”

Earlier this year Oxford University professor, Dr. Michael Biggs, accused the National Health Service’s clinic for transgender children of hiding negative evidence about the effects of puberty blockers on children. Instead, Biggs claimed, the clinic is continuing experimental treatment on adolescents without solid evidence of its long-term effects.

Dr. Biggs’ own research suggests that after a year of treatment “a significant increase” was found in patients who had been born female telling staff that they “deliberately try to hurt or kill myself,” according to The Telegraph.

According to Biggs, evidence showed that “Puberty blockers exacerbated gender dysphoria. Yet the study has been used to justify rolling out this drug regime to several hundred children aged under 16.”

Closer to home, Dr. John McHugh, a distinguished professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins University, calls this chemical treatment of minors who are uncomfortable with their birth sex “reckless and irresponsible.”

“Many people are doing what amounts to an experiment on these young people without telling them it’s an experiment,” Dr. McHugh said. “You need evidence for that, and this is a very serious treatment. It is comparable to doing frontal lobotomies.”

Psychological counseling, given time, is the answer for many gender-confused young people, endocrinologist Dr. William Malone stated.

“With counseling, or even watchful waiting, an average of 85% of these children would have a resolution of their distress by early adulthood,” he explained. “There are currently 10 studies in the medical literature demonstrating this.”

Dr. McHugh cites research showing a “catagion effect” among gender-confused young people.  Brown University Assistant Professor in Behavioral Sciences Lisa Littman, found in her 2018 study that young people who have friends or know others who have said they are transgender are more likely to think they are transgender as well.

“In on-line forums, parents have been reporting that their children are experiencing what is described here as ‘rapid-onset gender dysphoria,’ appearing for the first time during puberty or even after its completion,” wrote Littman. “The onset of gender dysphoria seemed to occur in the context of belonging to a peer group where one, multiple, or even all of the friends have become gender dysphoric and transgender-identified during the same time frame.”

Gender confusion among young people, McHugh said, is “mostly being driven by psychological and psychosocial problems these people have,” which, he added, “explains the rapid onset gender dysphoria Lisa Littman has spelled out.”

The Telegraph reports that t half of children treated at the UK’s gender identity clinics are prescribed hormone-blockers that halt puberty, but which resumes when the patient stops taking the drugs.

Supposedly, this gives children the time to consider whether they truly want to make the transition to the opposite sex. If so, the next step is to take opposite-sex hormones, which is irreversible and can cause sterility.  The final step is surgery to alter or remove genitalia.

Dr. McHugh says patients who take this final step have to be monitored and treated by doctors for the rest of their lives.

“Can you imagine having a life where you need to seek doctors all the time, for everything, just to live?” McHugh continued. “Getting your hormones checked, getting everything checked. That is something doctors should like to spare people of.”

Dr. Malone also stated that society is just beginning to see the harmful effects of this highly risky approach to treating gender dysphoric children and adolescents.

“We are beginning to see many young adults begin attempts to reverse the damage that has been done by hormonal and surgical treatments. As a result, investigations into gender clinic practices have begun in the U.K., and are being considered in Australia and Sweden,” he said.

“Highly respected doctors from these countries are stating that we are in the midst of a medical scandal of unparalleled significance,” Malone concluded.

–Wire services