Child Development / Family Research

Gender Ideology, Children, Objective Sexual Abuse, Comprehensive Sex Education: 3 Articles

The War on Abstinence and Fidelity

A recent comment in The Lancet makes the case that when it comes to international HIV/AIDS prevention, abstinence and fidelity should be abandoned in favor of comprehensive sexuality education (CSE).

Titled “A farewell to abstinence and fidelity?”, the brief article was written by authors from UNAIDS, the Swedish Association for Sexuality Education, and University College, London. Discussing the High-Level Meeting on Ending Aids held in June, they wrote:

“Many socially conservative Member States, in alliance with the Holy See, argued against the deletion of abstinence and fidelity as core components of effective HIV prevention. They were urged on by actors on the margins who provided delegates with misinformation and spurious arguments in opposition to comprehensive sexuality education.”

Proponents of CSE will not tolerate even the inclusion of abstinence and fidelity alongside other measures; only deletion will do.

What nobody disputes is that abstinence and fidelity, when practiced consistently, are effective in preventing HIV, crisis pregnancies, and sexually transmitted infections, not to mention the emotional and psychological consequences of sex outside marriage.

While CSE advocates frequently claim that abstinence education is ineffective in changing behavior—certainly a disputable claim—they show little interest in coming up with more effective abstinence-based curricula. Rather, they seek to impose a set of values around human sexuality that are highly controversial and, in many parts of the world, utterly unacceptable.

Particularly when it comes to young adolescents, sexual activity can have devastating consequences, and brings no benefits.
The fastest-growing health risk for adolescents around the world is “unsafe” sexual activity—but it isn’t as if “safe” sexual activity is beneficial to them, nor consequence-free.

We have new data from the U.S. showing that abstinence is not only plausible but a lived reality for a large—and growing—percentage of adolescents [~59%].
Teaching young people the value of fidelity and abstinence to their long-term wellbeing is something worth doing, and finding ways to do better, not something to be discontinued for the purpose of promoting a harmful ideology of human sexuality.

Because in the end, it is ‘all about ideology’.

One of the common tropes we hear is that CSE is about science, while abstinence and fidelity is about religious beliefs. [ed. This is absolutely backwards]

From the Lancet piece:

“With scientific evidence rather than dogma, countries should adopt and implement a progressive agenda to end AIDS and ensure sexual health and wellbeing for all.”
[ed. ‘safe sex’ and ‘harm reduction’ do NOT ‘end AIDS and ensure sexual health and wellbeing’ — this could not be further from the truth! Anyone promoting this philosophy hca absolutely no confidence in the ability of human beings to control & discipline themselves to avoid dangerous sexual behaviors, and instead prefer to only ‘reduce the risk’. So, instead of helping our youth and everyone else to learn to avoid a virtual 100% of sexual danger, this philosophy prefers to “let ’em rip” and when half or more of our youth would end up with “HIV, crisis pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections, emotional and psychological consequences of sex outside marriage” they will either just say, “Oh, well”, or “there are no consequences of sex outside marriage”, or “just abort, no big deal” .
Certainly seems that Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA) would be a much smarter philosophy than just reducing the risk, don’t you agree?]

Ultimately, scientific data can help us to find and evaluate better ways to teach adolescent people how to exercise responsibility with regard to their sexuality, starting with Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA).
On the other hand, starting with a ‘harm reduction’ approach, which presumes that self-control and fidelity are beyond the scope of the world’s young people, is an ideological move, not a scientific one.
It is an ideological move motivated by way different ‘dogmas’ than those of the world’s long-standing and major religions.
[edited version of article by Rebecca Oas, Ph.D., August 18, 2016, https://c-fam.org/turtle_bay/war-abstinence-fidelity/ ]

 

 

 

Gender Ideology Leads to Child Abuse: Pediatricians

“Facts – not ideology – determine reality,” the American College of Pediatricians (ACP) said in a warning to legislators and educators about the dangers of surgical and medical sex change operations to children.

“Conditioning children into believing that a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse,” the physicians said, “Rates of suicide are twenty times greater among adults who use cross-sex hormones and undergo sex reassignment surgery, even in Sweden which is among the most LGBTQ – affirming countries.”

The group, which aims at getting parents involved in their children’s health and education about health, said, “Gender (an awareness and sense of oneself as male or female) is a sociological and psychological concept; not an objective biological one,” and that, “A person’s belief that he or she is something they are not is, at best, a sign of confused thinking.”

To the contrary, the group maintained that human sexuality is a “binary trait” and said the XY and XX chromosomes that determine female or male sex are “genetic markers of health” not “genetic markers of a disorder.”

“No one is born with a gender. Everyone is born with a biological sex,” the statement said.

The American Academy of Pediatricians, the larger professional society from which the ACP broke away in 2002, has surgical and medical interventions in youth to suppress the hormones that naturally cause girls to grow into women and boys to men.

The ACP says this change in position has put American teens at higher risk for physical and mental illness. “Puberty is not a disease and puberty-blocking hormones can be dangerous…as many as 98% of gender confused boys and 88% of gender confused girls eventually accept their biological sex after naturally passing through puberty,” the ACP pointed out, and noted that children who use puberty blockers to “impersonate the opposite sex” will require cross-sex hormones in late adolescence that in turn can cause dangerous health risks such as high blood pressure, blood clots, stroke and cancer.

One of the statement’s authors is psychologist Paul McHugh. Drawing upon his clinical work with LGBTQ persons as chief psychologist at Johns Hopkins hospital and research as distinguished professor at the university’s medical school, McHugh has criticized what he sees as the American Psychological Association’s embracing of gender ideology at the expense of sound medical practice. McHugh authored an amicus brief filed in the U.S. Supreme Court case that overturned man-woman marriage laws in the U.S. last year.

Pro-LGBT groups criticized the ACP statement saying it would incite discrimination; one group called it an “attack on transgender children”. A public interest law firm labeled the ACP a “hate group” when it filed an amicus brief with the Alabama Supreme Court which favored exceptions to the 2015 U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling knocking down U.S. laws protecting marriage as between a man and a woman.

Activists similarly criticized Pope Francis’ recent remarks to Polish bishops where he identified gender “ideology” as a form of “ideological colonization” and linked it to government corruption. He said, “Today children – children! – are taught in school that everyone can choose his or her sex. Why are they teaching this? Because the books are provided by the persons and institutions that give you money. These forms of ideological colonization are also supported by influential countries. And this is terrible!”

[Comment: …silliness about gender roles shouldn’t blind us to the suffering, including in children, when there is real confusion about sex and gender. I report this week on a warning from the American College of Pediatricians who say “gender ideology” has infiltrated medical practice that doctors and policy makers are ignoring the evidence showing how sex change procedures on young people amount to child abuse.  …[G]ender ideology in schools is the result of “ideological colonization” from rich donor nations and called its adoption a form of government corruption in recipient nations. Let’s hope this message gets through to the head of the Organization of American States at their meeting next month. The organization has taken to promoting gender ideology worldwide. Marianna Orlandi reports. Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D., Managing Editor, Friday Fax, 18 Aug 2016]

RELATED
OAS Emerging as Global LGBT Rights Advocate, 18 Aug 2016 — https://c-fam.org/friday_fax/oas-emerging-global-lgbt-rights-advocate/
Gender Ideology Harms Children, 17 Aug 2016 — http://www.acpeds.org/the-college-speaks/position-statements/gender-ideology-harms-children

[Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D. | August 18, 2016, NEW YORK, August 19 (C-Fam); https://c-fam.org/friday_fax/gender-ideology-leads-child-abuse-pediatricians/ ]

 
Gender Ideology Harms Children

The American College of Pediatricians urges educators and legislators to reject all policies that condition children to accept as normal a life of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex. Facts – not ideology – determine reality.

1. Human sexuality is an objective biological binary trait: “XY” and “XX” are genetic markers of male and female, respectively – not genetic markers of a disorder. The norm for human design is to be conceived either male or female. Human sexuality is binary by design with the obvious purpose being the reproduction and flourishing of our species. This principle is self-evident. The exceedingly rare disorders of sex development (DSDs), including but not limited to testicular feminization and congenital adrenal hyperplasia, are all medically identifiable deviations from the sexual binary norm, and are rightly recognized as disorders of human design. Individuals with DSDs do not constitute a third sex.1

2. No one is born with a gender. Everyone is born with a biological sex. Gender (an awareness and sense of oneself as male or female) is a sociological and psychological concept; not an objective biological one. No one is born with an awareness of themselves as male or female; this awareness develops over time and, like all developmental processes, may be derailed by a child’s subjective perceptions, relationships, and adverse experiences from infancy forward. People who identify as “feeling like the opposite sex” or “somewhere in between” do not comprise a third sex. They remain biological men or biological women.2,3,4

3. A person’s belief that he or she is something they are not is, at best, a sign of confused thinking. When an otherwise healthy biological boy believes he is a girl, or an otherwise healthy biological girl believes she is a boy, an objective psychological problem exists that lies in the mind not the body, and it should be treated as such. These children suffer from gender dysphoria. Gender dysphoria (GD), formerly listed as Gender Identity Disorder (GID), is a recognized mental disorder in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-V).5 The psychodynamic and social learning theories of GD/GID have never been disproved.2,4,5

4. Puberty is not a disease and puberty-blocking hormones can be dangerous. Reversible or not, puberty- blocking hormones induce a state of disease – the absence of puberty – and inhibit growth and fertility in a previously biologically healthy child.6

5. According to the DSM-V, as many as 98% of gender confused boys and 88% of gender confused girls eventually accept their biological sex after naturally passing through puberty.5

6. Children who use puberty blockers to impersonate the opposite sex will require cross-sex hormones in late adolescence. Cross-sex hormones (testosterone and estrogen) are associated with dangerous health risks including but not limited to high blood pressure, blood clots, stroke and cancer.7,8,9,10

7. Rates of suicide are twenty times greater among adults who use cross-sex hormones and undergo sex reassignment surgery, even in Sweden which is among the most LGBTQ – affirming countries.11 What compassionate and reasonable person would condemn young children to this fate knowing that after puberty as many as 88% of girls and 98% of boys will eventually accept reality and achieve a state of mental and physical health?

8. Conditioning children into believing that a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse. Endorsing gender discordance as normal via public education and legal policies will confuse children and parents, leading more children to present to “gender clinics” where they will be given puberty-blocking drugs. This, in turn, virtually ensures that they will “choose” a lifetime of carcinogenic and otherwise toxic cross-sex hormones, and likely consider unnecessary surgical mutilation of their healthy body parts as young adults.

Michelle A. Cretella, M.D.
President of the American College of Pediatricians

Quentin Van Meter, M.D.
Vice President of the American College of Pediatricians
Pediatric Endocrinologist

Paul McHugh, M.D.
University Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Medical School and the former psychiatrist in chief at Johns Hopkins Hospital

For a PDF version click here: Gender Ideology Harms Children.

CLARIFICATIONS in response to questions regarding points 3 & 5:

Regarding Point 3: “Where does the APA or DSM-V indicate that Gender Dysphoria is a mental disorder?”

The APA (American Psychiatric Association) is the author of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition(DSM-V). The APA states that those distressed and impaired by their GD meet the definition of a disorder. The College is unaware of any medical literature that documents a gender dysphoric child seeking puberty blocking hormones who is not significantly distressed by the thought of passing through the normal and healthful process of puberty.
From the DSM-V fact sheet:
“The critical element of gender dysphoria is the presence of clinically significant distress associated with the condition.”
“This condition causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.”

Regarding Point 5: “Where does the DSM-V list rates of resolution for Gender Dysphoria?”

On page 455 of the DSM-V under “Gender Dysphoria without a disorder of sex development” it states: “Rates of persistence of gender dysphoria from childhood into adolescence or adulthood vary. In natal males, persistence has ranged from 2.2% to 30%. In natal females, persistence has ranged from 12% to 50%.” Simple math allows one to calculate that for natal boys: resolution occurs in as many as 100% – 2.2% = 97.8% (approx. 98% of gender-confused boys) Similarly, for natal girls: resolution occurs in as many as 100% – 12% = 88% gender-confused girls

The bottom line: Our opponents advocate a new scientifically baseless standard of care for children with a psychological condition (GD) that would otherwise resolve after puberty for the vast majority of patients concerned.

Specifically, they advise: affirmation of children’s thoughts which are contrary to physical reality; the chemical castration of these children prior to puberty with GnRH agonists (puberty blockers which cause infertility, stunted growth, low bone density, and an unknown impact upon their brain development), and, finally, the permanent sterilization of these children prior to age 18 via cross-sex hormones.

There is an obvious self-fulfilling nature to encouraging young GD children to impersonate the opposite sex and then institute pubertal suppression.

If a boy who questions whether or not he is a boy (who is meant to grow into a man) is treated as a girl, then has his natural pubertal progression to manhood suppressed, have we not set in motion an inevitable outcome?

All of his same sex peers develop into young men, his opposite sex friends develop into young women, but he remains a pre-pubertal boy. He will be left psychosocially isolated and alone. He will be left with the psychological impression that something is wrong. He will be less able to identify with his same sex peers and being male, and thus be more likely to self identify as “non-male” or female.

Moreover, neuroscience reveals that the pre-frontal cortex of the brain which is responsible for judgment and risk assessment is not mature until the mid-twenties.

Never has it been more scientifically clear that children and adolescents are incapable of making informed decisions regarding permanent, irreversible and life-altering medical interventions.

For this reason, the College maintains it is abusive to promote this ideology, first and foremost for the well-being of the gender dysphoric children themselves, and secondly, for all of their non-gender-discordant peers, many of whom will subsequently question their own gender identity, and face violations of their right to bodily privacy and safety.

Please visit this page on the College website concerning sexuality and gender issues — http://www.acpeds.org/parents/sexuality/sexuality-and-gender-issues

References:
1. Consortium on the Management of Disorders of Sex Development, “Clinical Guidelines for the Management of Disorders of Sex Development in Childhood.” Intersex Society of North America, March 25, 2006. Accessed 3/20/16 from http://www.dsdguidelines.org/files/clinical.pdf

2. Zucker, Kenneth J. and Bradley Susan J. “Gender Identity and Psychosexual Disorders.” FOCUS: The Journal of Lifelong Learning in Psychiatry. Vol. III, No. 4, Fall 2005 (598-617)

3. Whitehead, Neil W. “Is Transsexuality biologically determined?” Triple Helix (UK), Autumn 2000, p6-8. accessed 3/20/16 from http://www.mygenes.co.nz/transsexuality.htm; see also Whitehead, Neil W. “Twin Studies of Transsexuals [Reveals Discordance]” accessed 3/20/16 from http://www.mygenes.co.nz/transs_stats.htm

4. Jeffreys, Sheila. Gender Hurts: A Feminist Analysis of the Politics of Transgenderism. Routledge, New York, 2014 (pp.1-35)

5. American Psychiatric Association: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, Arlington, VA, American Psychiatric Association, 2013 (451-459). See page 455 re: rates of persistence of gender dysphoria

6. Hembree, WC, et al. Endocrine treatment of transsexual persons: an Endocrine Society clinical practice guideline. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2009;94:3132-3154

7. Olson-Kennedy, J and Forcier, M. “Overview of the management of gender nonconformity in children and adolescents.” UpToDate November 4, 2015. Accessed 3.20.16 from www.uptodate.com

8. Moore, E., Wisniewski, & Dobs, A. “Endocrine treatment of transsexual people: A review of treatment regimens, outcomes, and adverse effects.” The Journal of Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2003; 88(9), pp3467-3473

9. FDA Drug Safety Communication issued for Testosterone products accessed 3.20.16: http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/DrugSafety/PostmarketDrugSafetyInformationforPatientsandProviders/ucm161874.htm

10. World Health Organization Classification of Estrogen as a Class I Carcinogen: http://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/topics/ageing/cocs_hrt_statement.pdf

11. Dhejne, C, et.al. “Long-Term Follow-Up of Transsexual Persons Undergoing Sex Reassignment Surgery: Cohort Study in Sweden.” PLoS ONE, 2011; 6(2). Affiliation: Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Division of Psychiatry, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden. Accessed 3.20.16 from http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0016885

[17 Aug 2016 — http://www.acpeds.org/the-college-speaks/position-statements/gender-ideology-harms-children ]