Doctor Sounds Alarm on ‘Transgender Assembly Line’
By Kelsey Bolar
Despite growing awareness and concern over the explosion in doctors and mental health experts prescribing gender-confused children puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, and irreversible surgeries, the medical establishment remains dug-in on promoting what advocates call “gender-affirming care.”
“There’s an unwritten understanding that intelligent, informed, educated people will hold certain views,” said Miriam Grossman, MD, a child, adolescent, and adult psychiatrist whose private practice includes gender-confused children and their families. “People who challenge the current narrative about transgender kids are marginalized or worse.”
Dr. Grossman is a rare dissenting voice among medical professionals who uniformly support “gender-affirming care,” which begins with socially transitioning a child by using a new name and pronouns. Supporters believe it’s harmless and compassionate to affirm a child’s “gender identity,” even by keeping it a secret from parents in schools or therapy settings. But what many often don’t realize is that “gender-affirming care” incorporates an array of medical treatments such as puberty blockers, hormones and, in some cases, irreversible surgeries.
Among professionals and experts, Dr. Grossman said, “there is no consensus” on this treatment model for children and adolescents. “There is a debate that’s going on, but Washington is not acknowledging the voices that are on the other side. They are silencing us. They are acting like we don’t exist.”
The Biden administration has been unwavering in its commitment to cross-sex hormones and surgery for children facing an identity crisis of sorts. Assistant Health Secretary Admiral Rachel Levine, who identifies as transgender, publicly promoted the “affirmation only” model of treating gender-confused children. Speaking directly to parents of transgender-identifying children, President Joe Biden unequivocally said, “affirming your child’s identity is one of the most powerful things you can do to keep them safe and healthy.”
Dr. Grossman expressed numerous concerns with the president’s public recommendation. “The child is focused on what they want at the moment,” she said. “And what they want at that moment so much is to be a guy, to be a girl, because they have the idea that when they go into this new identity, they’ll be able to leave their problems behind. Life will be better.”
“In no other field of medicine would we put the child in a position of making medical decisions. And yet that is actually what’s happening,” she noted.
Many children facing gender confusion have “comorbidities,” Dr. Grossman added, which can include anxiety, depression, autism, or a slew of other mental health issues. Of great concern is the trend of doctors and mental health experts overlooking these issues and using “gender-affirming care” as a superficial solution, while leaving the underlying issues untreated.
“It’s critical to be looking at those other issues that they have and not just to be automatically putting them onto an assembly line—the transgender assembly line that this is what’s going on with you, you need to be socially affirmed, you need to go in the direction of hormones,” she said.
Dr. Grossman pointed to earlier studies from children who developed gender dysphoria before puberty, which show an average of 80% reach a point of acceptance of their bodies when they go through natural puberty.
“The transgender path is a difficult path, and it’s a path of many lifelong appointments with doctors,” she said. “Once you are on puberty blockers, there’s a close to 100% chance that after those puberty blockers, you will go on to cross-sex hormones. Depending on the age at which these treatments are started, they could make reproduction impossible. In other words, the child will be sterilized. We must recognize that this is a huge decision with lifelong impacts.”
Cross-sex hormones, which do not have FDA approval for pediatric “gender care,” include complications such as sexual dysfunction, weakening of the bones, and cardiovascular disease. Surgeries, such as the removal of healthy breast tissue or the removal of healthy sex organs, entail even more adverse side effects such as chronic pain, sexual dysfunction, difficulty urinating, and infection.
“We want to try and put children on a path in which they will have fewer doctors’ appointments in their lives,” Dr. Grossman said. “Not more.”
In Europe, countries including Finland, Sweden, and the UK have limited “gender-affirming care” for children after determining that, in many cases, the scientific evidence did not justify medical intervention.
Yet, in the U.S., leading medical organizations are doubling down, even demanding that the Biden administration and social media companies leverage their power to silence critics.
The public pressure campaign began after opponents of the “gender-affirming” treatment model shared publicly available videos of Boston Children’s Hospital promoting “gender-affirming” surgeries, such as double mastectomies or hysterectomies in children. In the videos, which Boston Children’s Hospital has since removed, a social worker touts making irreversible surgeries available for “people as young as 15.” She said:
“Many surgical centers require you to be 18. At Boston Children’s Hospital, for top surgeries, we’ll see people as young as age 15 if they’ve been affirmed in their gender for a long time and don’t really have any other life complications that make surgery inappropriate.”
In response, leading medical organizations demanded the Department of Justice “investigate and prosecute” individuals sharing what they deem “false and misleading information” about hospitals and physicians providing “gender-affirming care” for children. They also demanded that social media companies “do more to stop the rhetoric that often incites threats or acts of violence.”
By conflating gender critical “rhetoric” with “threats or acts of violence,” medical organizations are seeking to wield government power to shut down critical debate. Dr. Grossman, who was featured in The Daily Wire documentary, “What Is a Woman?,” is one of America’s few psychiatric experts brave enough to speak out against her own profession for prioritizing political correctness over public health.
“I’m sad to say that a lot of my colleagues really are lacking in the area of courage,” she said. “People want to keep their jobs. People want their careers.”
As for why she continues to speak out despite the consequences and risks to her career, Dr. Grossman said, “I know too much to not do anything about this. I know what kids are going through. I know that 13-year-old girls are having their breasts removed. Minor boys are being castrated. We can’t accept it, and we can’t be complicit in the lie by staying silent.”