I posted this earlier today in Quora to a question with an agenda, at least it felt like that.
The original question: Are most people who undergo a gender transition happier after transition than before it?
I’ve been doing some reading and it doesn’t seem like changing your sex makes a difference for the majority of people who fell they were born in the wrong body?
- The “Transsexual” Delusion
- 20% regret changing genders, over 40% attempt suicide, and even after surgery a large number remain traumatize
From a brief examination of the references:
The first reference is both charged and biased. I didn’t want to cause myself angst by reading through it. I find this kind of material a kind of abuse. It represents a very fringe view, read it if you want.
A quick look at the second confirmed my statements. It’s clearly based on very dated information, specifically information from the 70s. Nobody can really claim highly accurate statistics about any of this because there are exactly zero large scale studies in existence on any of these subjects. What does exist are small cohort studies looking at groups of perhaps a couple hundred, often restricted to a specific country.
Then these are often taken wildly out of context for the purpose of creating propaganda. The studies authors may be incensed (they really are quite often) when their papers are misused by both TERFs (Trans exclusionary radical feminists) and the family values crowd that really wants to find a way to make us perverts with a delusion regardless of the scientific and psychological data to the conclusion. Statistics mean nothing if you believe hard enough it seems.
My response on quora:
I’ve studied earlier research and both non-biased research and personal conversations with GRS surgeons and therapists puts the rate of regrets of surgery in the < 1% range in modern times. It’s important to say modern times because some of the material often quoted in material promoted by groups like NARTH goes back to the 70s before the Benjamin, not the WPATH standards were in place and many inappropriate SRS operations were being done such as gay men for their boy friends, bisexuals, etc.
Even then the rate was around 10%, not 20%.
The 40% suicide rate is the overall suicide rate for untreated transgender people, not transitioned transgender people.
Most people I personally know, including myself who have undergone SRS are happy about it, even though we often deal with complications. We generally have it for solid reasons and those rarely if ever have to do with sex.
Delusion as a word: it is becoming more and more clear that being transgender is not only not a delusion but solidly rooted in both genetics and conditions in the womb. There are now many studies showing brain structure differences between cis and trans males and females with correlations between trans and cis males and trans and cis females. Nothing like exact matches, but enough to say there’s more than psychology going on.
There are also many, many cases of assigned at birth intersex individuals who later end up “trans” because the choice wasn’t left to them but was taken for them, and cases like the Reimer twins where one twin of twin boys had a botched circumcision, was changed to a girl, raised as a girl and spontaneously announced himself a boy around nine. He then lived as a male but later committed suicide.
Whenever you examine and consider outcomes, remember that the life of a trans person is not an easy one. LGBT youth have much higher incidence of sexual abuse, substance abuse, physical assault and suicide than their straight peers. Trans youth have it worse.
Trans adults are only now in some states achieving the right not to be evicted from public spaces and apartments, or fired from jobs because they are trans. So when you consider those suicide numbers and mental health numbers remember that many trans people are underpaid, live in poverty, may find themselves unwillingly involved in the sex trade and entirely cut off from their families. Then think about what you would feel in that situation before passing judgment. I’m fortunate to be well paid, white color and in an accepting community. Very fortunate.
Oh yes, to answer your question. I smile now. Yes, I’m much happier now. Thank you for asking.