Walt Heyer
Ex-trans crackpot Walt Heyer

via YouTube

Heritage Foundation’s blog is the outlet for: Kids Aren’t Born Transgender, So Don’t Let Advocates Bamboozle You.

First of all, no one asserts that anyone is born transgender. Gender identity is formed by the age of two. Incongruence may cause a child to eventually suffer from gender dysphoria which might require gender affirmation. Walt Heyer is projecting when he suggests that people (other than him) are out to bamboozle which means to fool or cheat.

I am an advocate for the acceptance of the best available medical science. In contrast Mr. Heyer is an advocate for Christianity. His aim is to, well, … bamboozle people into not accepting medical science in order to conform society to religious scripture.

Anonymous validators:

People who pursue a cross-sex identity aren’t born that way, and children should not be encouraged to “transition” to the opposite sex, according to a reference work endorsed by the American Psychological Association.

Yet every day I hear from another parent who tells me that a child’s therapist, after an appointment or two, strongly recommends that the parent allow the child to change his or her name and personal pronouns, live as the opposite sex, and get on the track toward irreversible medical interventions.

Any parent who would consult with Heyer is an idiot. The fact that he is ex-transgender does not qualify him to offer advice.

Heyer’s surgery was about 36 years ago, Mr. Heyer is a professional transgender regretter. Driven by personal experience, a personality disorder (he admits to) and religion he is on tour to promote the notion that no one should transition. That is contrary to the overwhelming consensus of medical science. Heyer is representative of nothing.

But there is more at work. The religious set would like to deter parents from having their child evaluated by a gender specialist so they spread the bullshit that, if you see a gender specialist, they will urge your child to transition. Then (as Heyer has done) they always link this to gender confirmation surgery which is for adults.

Gender dysphoria is objectively diagnosed as is the severity of the condition. Therapists do not transition children. Children do that themselves if they feel compelled to do so in order to get relief from acute gender dysphoria.

The Catholic psychologist:

Laura Haynes, a licensed psychologist in California, recently reviewed the APA Handbook of Sexuality and Psychology and highlighted its research findings about transgender children.

Haynes is retired. She was a “traditional faith-based therapist.” What is it? Faith-based religion or evidence-based medical science? Or is it an amalgamation of the two? What happens when they are in conflict which is the case most of the time?

Haynes’ findings:

“In no more than about one in four children does gender dysphoria persist from childhood to adolescence or adulthood,” with the majority of affected boys later identifying as gay, not transgender, and up to half of affected girls identifying as lesbian, not transgender.

Transition depends upon the severity of the condition. Most kids with gender dysphoria do not become transgender according to peer-reviewed research by Kristina Olson on the faculty of University of Washington and founder of the TransYouth project. Which begs the question: Why can I not find peer reviewed research authored by Dr. Haynes in a respectable academic journal? The handbook, by the way, was published five years ago with a 2013 origin.

“Early social transition (i.e., change of gender role, such as registering a birth-assigned boy in school as a girl) should be approached with caution to avoid foreclosing this stage of gender identity development.”

I doubt that anyone would disagree which is why children need to be professionally evaluated by a specialist. Again there are two questions: Does the child have gender dysphoria and, if so, what is the severity of the condition?

“Early social transition may be necessary for some; however, the stress associated with possible reversal of this decision has been shown to be substantial.”

Desistance rates are minuscule, particularly if the child is properly evaluated in the first place — something they are dissuading parents from doing. Consider the pain that a boy must be in to start wearing dresses to school. (Then) she knows that she will be the object of considerable ridicule, even bullying.

Anonymous enemies:

Yet we all have been bamboozled by distorted claims to the contrary from sex-change advocates, who insist the science is settled.

They say people who identify as the opposite sex will never change their mind, the cross-sex identity is fixed and the earlier the child, teen, or adult is affirmed as the opposite sex and makes the transition, the better off he or she will be.

Who the hell is “they” and where are direct quotes? Who are these “sex-change advocates?” This whole “identify as the opposite sex” proposition is just gibberish. Heyer had his surgery in his 40s. Now he is claiming to have multiple personality disorder which I am certain is self-diagnosed.

Children transition in response to distress, the severity of their gender dysphoria. Severe GD does not usually go away. Again,much is dependent upon a proper professional evaluation. Children are first treated with puberty blockers. In the early stages they are essentially experimenting with gender and what makes them the most comfortable. In what state do they function the best?

This is a very orderly process choreographed by a team of doctors including a psychiatrist a therapist and possibly an endocrinologist. None of these highly trained professionals is out to hurt children. Really. What the hell is Heyer selling?

In fact, however, the American Psychological Association and the weight of historical evidence both challenge society’s affirmation of cross-sex identities.

The preface to the APA Handbook of Sexuality and Psychology, published in 2014, says it is endorsed and approved by the American Psychological Association, which describes itself as “the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States and the largest association of psychologists in the world.”

In fact the APA endorsed the gender-affirming care model. According to the APA’s continuing education program for professionals:

Affirmative practice

The research in this area is burgeoning, says Diane Ehrensaft, PhD, director of mental health at the Child and Adolescent Gender Center at the University of California, San Francisco. And it increasingly suggests the value of gender-affirming practice that respects and supports the gender identities and experiences of children and adolescents, says Ehrensaft, who has reviewed the literature along with Jack Turban, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital (Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, online first publication, 2017).

Jack Turban is also on the faculty at Harvard. Just who is most credible in this area? Do you think that Jack knows a bit more about medical science than either Heyer or that Dr. Haynes?

After relating his own experience nearly 40 years ago:

Ihlenfeld’s comments 40 years ago foreshadowed the evidence provided in the APA Handbook, where page 743 of Volume 1 says that identifying as the opposite sex is “most likely the result of a complex interaction between biological and environmental factors.”

“Research on the influence of family of origin dynamics,” it adds, “has found some support for separation anxiety among gender-nonconforming boys and psychopathology among mothers.”

I haven’t read the damned thing (it is $300). Environmental means anything that is not genetic. I suspect that Heyer is editing the quotes a bit and he is obviously selective. They are trying to pass this off as the APA Handbook=the APA and that is not the case. One of the editors was Lisa Diamond in Utah. She is best known for her 2008 book about sexual orientation fluidity in women. She hasn’t done much in the area of gender identity. Diamond is an LGBT champion for sure.

The other editor is Deborah L. Tolman who is not a healthcare worker. Tolman has a doctorate in education and, by the way, the APA dates this as originating in 2013. Six years in medical science is an eternity.

Heyer is trying to suggest that talk therapy addresses gender dysphoria and that is not the case. Talk therapy can help a child understand their gender identity and what it means but no therapist can change a person’s gender. That is just re-tooled gay conversion therapy.

I am going to send off something to Diamond. She is usually responsive but not always. If I learn anything substantive I will update this post.

Heyer has a book to sell:

The sex-change cheerleaders falsely claim, “Affirmation is the only solution.” They use distorted doctrine to lobby for laws that punish counselors and parents who say otherwise, laws that take away the rights of patients to choose their own therapy goals.

Organizations such as The Trevor Project are lobbying in all 50 states to outlaw any therapy that suggests interest in cross-sex transition can change.

Meanwhile, accounts such as these of families and lives being ripped to shreds by sex change appear in my inbox daily. I have compiled 30 of the stories I’ve received, along with recent research, in my own book, “Trans Life Survivors.”

Again, more anonymous bullshit and in the first paragraph Heyer doesn’t inform us of exactly who is saying exactly what. Did I mention that Walt Heyer is intellectually dishonest most of the time? Instead of the diatribe, Heyer should provide some evidence of reparative therapy working. Heyer cannot. Heyer knows that he cannot so he is attacking unknown people with unknown views.

Gender in children can change (which is how gender dysphoria resolves itself). However there is no known means for a therapist to effect that change.

I write about trans and gender nonconforming kids quite a bit. It should be obvious that I care about what is best for them. I care a lot. If some researcher came up with the magic gender dysphoria bullet I would promote its application in any form. Heyer’s objective is to keep kids away from the professionals and a proper evaluation. Heyer’s interests are religious.

And in conclusion:

We must wake up and use the evidence provided in the APA Handbook to counter those who say transgender people are born that way.

Instead, we must fight loudly for the rights of patients to choose their counseling goals and against laws that legislate affirmation as the only therapy allowed.

Heyer clearly does not understand the meaning of evidence and no one — no one — claims that people are born transgender. In point of fact that is a medical impossibility. Heyer’s conclusion reveals that this is all about conversion therapy. Where is the damned evidence to support conversion therapy? Where? This tirade consisted of over 1,400 words without answering that question.

Why promote something that cannot be proven? It is the premise of faith!

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By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.