Renowned San Francisco phalloplasty surgeon hit with multiple lawsuits

Note: The administrators and contributors at 4thWaveNow do not take a position on the veracity of the allegations set forth in these lawsuits. We are reporting on public documents available on the Internet about these legal actions. Commenters’ opinions are their own.


In a previous 4thWaveNow post, we documented the proliferation of gender surgeons who perform mastectomies and “bottom surgeries.” Some of them, including San Francisco surgeon Curtis Crane,  have publicly indicated their willingness to operate on patients under the age of 18.

One of Crane’s former patients, a detransitioned woman who underwent a double mastectomy at age 17, wrote a guest post for 4thWaveNow.

It has come to our attention that Dr. Crane has been the defendant in no less than six lawsuits during the last year. The suits variously allege medical malpractice, medical negligence, and/or failure to obtain informed consent.

Some of the lawsuits are still active, and all court documents are available via a public search on the San Francisco County Superior Court website.

Obviously, the exact details of the lawsuits vary, but all are centered around serious complications from phalloplasty and other “bottom surgery” procedures.

The six cases are as follows. To see the Register of Action (list of documents with dates) for each case, and all associated documents, simply enter the case number in the search box at the above link. When clicking on a document, be sure your browser allows pop-up windows.

  • 554254
  • 550630
  • 556743
  • 556713
  • 557327
  • 557363

Screen captures are taken from the complaint documents in the referenced cases.

 

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48 thoughts on “Renowned San Francisco phalloplasty surgeon hit with multiple lawsuits

  1. I’ve seen a lot of people online with similar complications (who didn’t sue). Even when this surgery works the results aren’t so great Imo, it’s a very strange facsimile of a phallus.

    Liked by 7 people

    • Actually it turned out a couple of these were people I saw on tumblr before but they can’t comment outside of giving the case numbers. These were people who were the few ftms who had phalloplasties that talked about it online. Wow. One of them got very sick of everyone asking “what happened to your arm?” in addition to the medical problems.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Words to the wise. Thank you for your ongoing excellent reporting,.4th Wave Now. This is going in my “Progressives Questioning Transgender” binder, along with several other of your posts. I’ll be giving 2.copies to my medical clinic: one for my doctor, and one for him to pass along to other docs in the clinic. It would be great if others would do the same with their docs, so we can spread the word that there is reason to question these surgeries. And that they shouldn’t assume the “gender specialists” are going to objectively, let alone cautiously, evaluate patients for the “need” for medical “treatments.” Family docs, GPs, and pediatricians need to be made aware the gender specialists are trained to affirm the patient’s beliefs and cheerlead them into drugs and surgeries.

      Liked by 2 people

      • *I wish all of your posts would fit in my binder. However, I’m creating a brochure with a link to your blog, if that is ok. The brochure will be titled “Progressives Questioning Transgender,” and is focusing on everyone’s right to freedom of tho ught,freedom of speech, and possibly it will mention freedom of association. Then it will simply provide links to gender critical sites like this. But I want to get your.permission first to mention your site.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. So there’s a lot of interesting information and commentary out there about medical error and what actions professionals, and the system, ought to take or should consider taking to reduce it, and to increase patient satisfaction and safety. One point that comes up in that commentary, and that’s quite relevant here, is that the vast majority of patients who are injured by negligent care never sue (e.g. https://www.wvmic.com/docs/unanticipated_outcome.pdf). I would think that especially in this area, where patients may be quite embarrassed or reluctant to come forward, six malpractice suits is a really strikingly large number, especially since Dr. Crane has not even been practicing in San Francisco for very long.

    Liked by 8 people

    • Wow, how graphic! Every result looked unnatural! No real doctor would be fooled by these facsimiles. Heck, even a layperson can see how ridiculous the results are. These surgeries are unethical, and should be illegal, even for adults. It isn’t right to physically prey upon the mentally ill for profit. This doctor is a criminal! This is insane!

      Liked by 5 people

      • Some FTTs say a phalloplasty should only be judged after the second stage, when a glans is sculpted, but even those later tweakings don’t make them look very realistic. It’s still obviously an artificially-constructed phallus. I don’t know why anyone would want metiodioplasty either. That looks even sadder, and clearly not like even a natural micropenis.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. There is a lot of faith placed in doctors like Crane. But, obviously, even with all of his experience, the procedure is not perfected.

    What I find really disheartening is that his patients believe phalloplasty surgeries are the only route to happiness. They feel medical professionals will be able to fix their whole body birth defects.

    HIs patients probably believed everyone who encouraged them on this path. That it was harmless to go on a gender journey. That it was necessary to become their authentic selves via off-label pharmaceuticals and risky surgeries. That the gender specialists would safely guide them.

    There is so much cheerleading now for transgender acceptance (as most of the parents here can attest). I wish my liberal friends would realize how harmful it is. They are encouraging kids to medically transition, without knowing the associated risks.

    Unfortunately, I think the only way to bring more sanity to the transgender rights movement is lawsuits like these. There’s no way to portray the disastrous consequences of these surgeries in a positive light. And it’s not transphobic or bigoted to show concern.

    Liked by 6 people

  4. Reading on the FTM tumbler that the recently faux-penised person is looking forward to sexual interaction with males. I venture a guess that most gay men, phallus worshippers, would be horrified seeing a penis in this condition. She/he has a hard road ahead and I’m sorry for that.

    Liked by 8 people

      • Thanks for your comment, Mark F. I sure do wish the gay community would somehow get this word out there. My XX kid thinks “he” is a gay man. If the gay community really doesn’t want relationships with female gay “men”, boy there are a whole bunch of teen females who need to hear this message loud and clear for a reality check. Transmen are not all would-have-been lesbians.

        Liked by 6 people

      • Even gay men who demand that lesbians should have oral sex with bepenised transwomen are disgusted if someone suggests to them that they perform cunnilingus on a transman. (This has happened. Can’t recall who it was from the top of my head, but you will probably come across it when you read all the blogs linked here)
        Gay men do not want sex with transmen. They are homosexual=attracted to the same sex. And because they are male, they feel entitled to have boundaries. The “cotton ceiling” bullshit won’t work on gay men.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Exactly. And I’m fairly confident most lesbians have zero interest in a transwoman’s lady stick/dick, although they insist we must or are ‘transphobic’. The trans movement’s association with lesbians/gays is an odd and perplexing one, and is bombing us back to the dark ages of complete gender restriction.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Some “trans men” have put up profiles on gay sites, and are complaining about the hostile reaction they are getting. I suppose there are a few “bi” identified men who might be interested, but I doubt there are that many. And lesbians aren’t all that interested in women who have had their breasts removed and are growing beards.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Yeah, that is no different than calling lesbians “vagina fetishists”. It’s homophobic crap!

        It’s also cruel to hyuk-hyuk about how “gross” the bodies of HUMAN BEINGS who have been preyed upon by a misogynist, lesbophobic, rape culture of a society is.

        And Mom, whose daughter thinks she is a ‘gay man’, I invite you to entertain two possibilities:

        a. She is bisexual, but in the current liberal high school mentality, bisexual girls are either seen as “attention grabbing phony straight sluts” or “ugly butches who are desperate” while bi boys are seen as “hot”,

        Or,

        b. She is only attracted to men, but doesn’t want to be treated the way girls in porn are, or to spend her life in pursuit of femininity rather than being a human. Gay men get to be human in her eyes, straight women get “facial abuse” and are defined by what they put up and push out of their genitalia. In a world of “I-dentity” , who would you rather be? Your daughter isn’t stupid. She’s trying to get the best deal she can in a rigged race.

        Finally, many females want this surgery because, if you don’t like penetration, want pregnancy, or enjoy masochism and/or selflessness, having a vagina is a raw deal compared to having an “insta-orgasm”, yeast-and-blood/ cramps free, not prone to UTI/STI penis. It’s time we stopped with the “girl power!! Pussie power!” crap. With this denial of reality, with not admitting to teen girls that being vaginated is often NOT FUN, how can you blame them for entering into “I’m a gay boy!” fantasyland when their mothers are in ” periods and cellulite and vaginas and hot wax on your vajayjayhoohah and finding a nice boy who loves you and doesn’t demand vomit blowjobs and ‘pussy wreckage’ is wonderful! ” fantasyland?

        BEING FEMALE IS NOT FUN. Until this is acknowledged, females will have their health ruined in search of obtaining a penis while gay men laugh about how icky the delusional “fish” are. Bisexual males will still rush to take advantage of trans men no matter what. Hell, even straight men prey on the “pre T” ones by feeding them lines like “you’re the first boy I ever liked!”

        And bi/lesbian females grew up just like trans females. Dating someone with a beard–yes, even for the lesbians–is considered permissible, because unlike males, gay females aren’t thinking in terms of hardons and ejaculations, dominance (for straight males) and sexxxay (for all males). They are thinking of having a romantic relationship with someone who understands the agony of growing up female, with someone who doesn’t want to shove something up a part of us that could get us preggo against our will and doesn’t even make most of us orgasm.

        In liberal schools, gay males are considered the ultimate hot, bitchy, popular “girls” without any of the “she’s a slut/fat/prude/ugly” potential pitfalls of actual girls. They get to express vulnerability without actually being vulnerable to rape/girl on girl cruelty/looks shaming/sexual harassment by jocks/’messy’ female reproductive issues. Don’t think teenage girls don’t notice that.

        Meanwhile, lesbians, particularly butches, are considered “the worst of all worlds” by liberal high school students, particularly the inner circles of “hot” (ie straight and feminine girls) and “hot guys” (ie jocks, sexually ambiguous hipster boys, and out fashion obsessed gay boys). Don’t think teenage girls don’t notice either how narrow the acceptance range for girls is, and how one can be a boy of varying qualities and not be considered worthless.

        Personally, I don’t think most gay males can ever comprehend females as potentially complex, tormented humans as they see males, so of course they will dismiss the FtM trend as a bunch of silly/ugly ladies after their precious gay peens rather than intelligent, shortchanged young women trying to squeeze their best shot at humanity and equal relationships out of a patriarchy that despises their brains and wants to sadistically colonize their bodies.

        Like

      • “having a vagina is a raw deal compared to having an “insta-orgasm”, yeast-and-blood/ cramps free, not prone to UTI/STI penis. It’s time we stopped with the “girl power!! Pussie power!” crap. With this denial of reality, with not admitting to teen girls that being vaginated is often NOT FUN”
        ^^^^^
        :::chuckle:::: Nope. These notions are clearly the offspring of an individual who does not have a vagina (or a woman consumed with internalized misogyny). Of course a pussy CAN (or not, if we so choose) yield an “insta-orgasm” (wtf). And, we know we could list unappetizing conditions that occur with both penises and vaginas. “Pussy Power”–as representing women’s rights, autonomy, or even rejection of our genitalia as “icky”– is, yawn, certainly not “crap.” Also…. all the lesbians I know (self included) are over the moon about the pleasure our pussies bring us— duet or solo. Delicious. Finally, if “being vaginated” intends that women occupy a misogynistic patriarchy which necessitates the mustering of courage, resilience, resourcefulness, and vigilance…then, yup, enduring oppression is not “fun”; working and bonding and succeeding with sisters-in-arms is, however, fun… and HOLY.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t remember where I read this, but I saw somewhere that one of the most common questions that MTT transitioners ask on the popular transgender Reddit is whether, after their transition, they’ll have a regular menstrual period.

    So I guess I shouldn’t be surprised if these poor women think that somehow modern medicine can create a functioning penis for them.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Has the US still not managed to have decent sex ed in all schools? Seriously, this level of ignorance, how do they live with it?

      Considering that a working penis would be a hell lot easier to construct than an uterus AND hormone-producing ovaries, I do think the chance is indeed very high that many women actually believe medicine can create a working penis.

      Liked by 3 people

    • Apparently some men can develop endometriosis from hormone therapy, if they have female tissue left over in their body from before the foetus converted to male, but I doubt they would enjoy this element of the female experience.

      Like

  6. It’s really sad to see the lengths these young women are willing to go to, or have been convinced they need to go to, in order to “pass” as men. Several FTT YouTubers have made videos documenting unexpected complications after phalloplasty, and it really doesn’t surprise me. This is major surgery, with a known history of risks and complications. It’s not ethical for the transactivists to present phalloplasty, or any of these major surgeries, as no big deal.

    Liked by 5 people

  7. What has happened to these patients, at the hand of this surgeon, is horrific- to say the least.

    I am a Registered Nurse and want you to know that symptoms such as redness and swelling- to a wound or surgical site, accompanied by fever are not symptoms which one should “not worry about”. These are very serious symptoms of possible serious infection. These infections can be localized or systemic. In some cases, infections can lead to loss of organs, limbs or life. That a surgeon told a patient not to worry about these symptoms is inexcusable. I truly hope that Dr. Crane is not currently being allowed to continue practicing and performing surgeries, in light of these patient concerns/law suit proceedings. If he is, there will likely be more patients like this and possibly some resultant deaths.

    I am also disclosing to you that I am very opposed to surgeries such as “mastectomy or phalloplasty, being done to healthy-bodied patients. Removal of healthy tissue and body parts, without any long-term study information demonstrating the positive effectiveness on patients, does not make sense to me. The risks to patients from these major surgeries seem to be much higher than proven long-term benefits.

    I do understand the need to remove or create body parts, in the case where those body parts have been damaged by trauma or disease. For these patients, they make the decision to undergo these surgeries after comparing the risks of the surgery to the benefits. But even these types of surgeries are not without serious possible risks. Serious infection is a risk of all major surgeries. Whenever the skin is opened on the body, there is a risk of infectious bacteria entering the site and the body.
    As a Registered Nurse, I care for my patients guided by the principle of first doing no harm. I truly believe that this principle should also be considered by surgeons such as Dr. Crane.

    My heart goes out to these patients, who have been damaged at the hands of this surgeon. But this surgeon is not the only medical professional who has cared for these patients. I believe that all of the physicians and therapists these patients have been assessed by, prior to deciding to proceed with these surgeries, should also be made culpable.

    Mumtears
    #FirstDoNoHarm

    Liked by 10 people

  8. So there is a Youtube video of a short interview with Dr. Crane. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YtvVRw5H6cc&feature=youtu.be

    In just two and a half short minutes, he manages to say that “if you don’t have family or community support – forget it – find that support somewhere else.” (Just in case the people around the prospective patient didn’t think surgery was a good idea for the person? Maybe because they were concerned for the person’s welfare?). There’s some unintentional humor when he admits that “there are no other psychiatric conditions treated with surgery.” Apparently, somehow, “this” (the thing he gets reimbursed for trying to fix) is still supposed to be a condition for which insurance coverage applies, it’s called “gender incongruence” but apparently it’s just sort of a state of being, nothing implied about it being damaging or harmful.

    Dummo comments like “XX for female and XY for male doesn’t work for everyone, and that’s okay.” Gravity doesn’t work for me, dude…

    At the end it gets a little poignant and you can see that somewhere in there, he actually thinks he’s helping people.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. In regard to lesbians and transmen: I’m amazed at the number of lesbians who have taken to repeating “it’s the person, not the genitals” when former girlfriends announce they are now men. So what happens to their former lesbian identification? It gets tossed out the window… because it insults the now transguy. They become a heteronormative couple! What a horrible trap.

    And the number of transguys on lesbian dating sites is weird. But they know most straight women/men won’t find their gig appealing…so they remain in the lesbian community, touting their manliness and spotty beards. Not fun.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Like the heterosexual women who stay with their man who wants to be a woman, a lot of lesbians who stay with their partner who is trying to be a man come across as abuse victims to be honest. The trans cult comes with a lot of gaslighting and mind-fuckery.

      I think that FTTs stay on lesbian dating sites and hang out with women because they know heterosexual women and gay men won’t tolerate their bullshit. So, they just suck up even more energy from lesbians. There was a discussion about this here: https://purplesagefem.wordpress.com/2017/02/02/big-boo-butch-banned-from-a-lesbian-site/

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry, but these lesbians who stay with trans men aren’t strictly into women, they are into females. They want someone who understands the trauma of growing up female who will not rape them. Some of them are former heteros who don’t find women attractive but are traumatized by male violence and sexual entitlement, ie political lesbians. Given that most trans men don’t want any partner going near their hated genitalia, and these women don’t want to go near female genitalia but also don’t want male genitalia near them, it seems to be a mutual agreement. Of course, I believe that compulsory heterosexuality also makes these PL’s enjoy being seen as the trans man’s “pretty laydee” when they are out and about, which kind of makes me cringe…

        …as does the number of these “laydees” delighting in being Earth Mothers and blushin’ flowers for their (stand by your) menz.

        Like

  10. The descriptions from the cases, are horrendous. Really shocking. He doesn’t seem to do any aftercare at all. That would be bad in a surgeon doing any operation.

    Using “grafts” to make a longer urethra? If you know anything about how the body works and what it’s made up of this doesn’t sound feasible. It’s clear that the people who invented this operation made up something to create the effect they sought. It was lousy. And they didn’t look at it afterwards and go ‘OK this is too crappy to do’. Because of the way medicine works, there’s no FDA for surgeries, there’s no one to rule this isn’t good enough to use on the public and to stop them. In other words the whole thing is a howling disaster.

    I certainly hope the plaintiffs in these cases win. 😩

    Liked by 2 people

  11. This is so very heart-breaking. Whatever these ladies were hoping this surgery would do, they’ve ended up in an even worse situation. I hope they win this lawsuit. As a gay man, being gay isn’t some emotional or intellectual state where I like the “idea” of a man. Even if people who are “pansexual” or “gender expansive” may call me a transphobe to say this, I would never be interested in an encounter with someone FTM. Sex isn’t some postmodern mental exercise. It isn’t hatred of women or of anyone that makes me not attracted to them. At some point, there are bodies involved, and mine simply will not respond to a woman’s, no matter how hard they’ve tried to stop being women.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I was just thinking about this. I wonder when we’re going to start seeing commercials on TV from law firms wanting to represent people who were medically transitioned and had botched surgeries and bad effects from hormones. “Were you given puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones as a child that destroyed your fertility? Did taking testosterone damage your liver? Were you given hormones without a complete psychological workup? Call now! We can help get you the compensation you deserve!”

    Liked by 2 people

  13. This person has not brought a malpractice suit, to my knowledge, but I believe they should, as they received a very poorly executed double mastectomy (“FTM Chest surgery”). The results are tragic. Donate if you have a mind to, but be warned, the photo of their surgery result is very disturbing. https://www.youcaring.com/faol-n-humphrey-640783

    All these botched phalloplasties, mastectomies and “neovaginas.” This shit has to stop.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Two very sad take-aways from that page – first, it seems that the person is not in touch with or supported by her family at all, as she repeatedly says she is a struggling college student, who had to raise the money for the first surgery all by herself, and now has to raise the money for the second surgery all by herself. Certainly one does wonder whether it might have been better to stay connected to her family? Perhaps they did want what was best for her, and worried about exactly what wound up happening, happening?

      Second, the person also says (in essence) that the surgery was supposed to fix her life and make all her dreams come true. Now, repairing the first surgery will solve all her problems. I don’t think surgery works like that (although some surgeons are fine with letting you have those expectations). No matter how much you modify your body, it’s still you under there.

      Liked by 2 people

  14. My online research on phalloplasties led me to this site and I have to say I am pretty horrified to read about how many people posted on this site to express their disgust and rejection of transgender men and the medical procedures used to help us live in a way that fits us best. I hesitate to reply, first because what I have to say will probably be deleted by the moderator. To be honest, I think you all probably just want to hear others who echo your own point of view. Second, I doubt, if any of you do read this, that you are going to change your mind. However, I will try to be optimistic and will write what I have to say.

    As a psychologist and as a transman, I imagine I have done a lot more research on this than the majority of people who have written on this site. In order to get these surgeries, especially genital surgeries, I think almost everyone should go through a lot of counseling (and or prayer, contemplation, research) to determine if this is the right path for them. Almost all surgeons do require referral letters from psychologists before they will do the surgeries. And, despite what many of you may think or assume, for some people these procedures are necessary. I have met many transmen who have had surgeries, including genital surgeries, who are very happy with their results and who are much more happy than they were before surgery. Moreover, most of them have partners, including cis-gender men and women, who are also very happy with the results. Just because you think it looks bad or is sad or looks fake does not mean everyone agrees with you or that you should broadcast to the world that you would never have sex with a person with genitals like that. If that is how you feel then OK. But may I humbly suggest that perhaps you should look at yourself and your own narrow worldview. Maybe you do not really understand what being transgender means. Perhaps you do not understand the complexities of gender because it has never seemed complex to you? There is, by the way, a growing amount of research which is finding differences in the brains of transgender people that may help explain how gender identity may not match a person’s sex chromosomes, genitals, or other sex characteristics.

    Personally, I love women and women’s bodies. The body of a woman just doesn’t happen to fit me very well and has caused a huge amount of discomfort and pain since childhood that nothing ever lessoned before I transitioned. Believe me, I tried everything before transitioning because, in part, I believed and felt the same way many of you seem to think and feel about transgender people and bodies. I am extremely grateful to all the people, trans and not trans, who have shown me acceptance, love, and compassion. I am also thankful than there are surgeons who are doing this very difficult work for an under serviced and stigmatized group of people. Does Crane have some lawsuits? Yes. I do not know all of the details of these suits although I am familiar with them and have read the documents about them available online. I have not heard his side of the story. Whether he is at fault or not, I do not know and cannot speak to. We will have to see what transpires in the courts.

    Are the surgeries perfect? Are they without complications? Can they give a person the body of a cis-gendered person? No. With the technology available the surgeons do the best they can. This is the reality. I should add, however, that phalloplasties, while very complicated and difficult to do, can give a person a working phallus that has erotic sensation to the tip, where the person can pee out of their penis, and where the person can get erect with an implant or other device. No one should go through these surgeries without extensive preparation and without a realistic appraisal of the possible results and financial and emotional costs. In addition, no one should be under the illusion that transitioning will solve all of a person’s problems or get rid of all pain or even all body dysphoria.

    It does seem that there are a very few, rare people who have transitioned through hormones and/or surgery and have come to regret their transition. I feel for these people. It is incredibly important that the decision to transition not be hasty, and I strongly suggest that anyone thinking of going down this path, or whose child is thinking of going down this path, not rush into anything and see a psychotherapist who has been well trained in this area. I would like to add that none of the therapists I have seen have been interested in fast tracking me, or anyone else to mu knowledge, into any aspect of transition. They are not just cheerleaders for transition, or should not be. The goal is to help the person come to understand the right path for them and which steps they need to take. Not all trans people need hormones, but some do. Not all trans people need surgeries, but some do.

    Some of you see the results of phalloplasties and you think they look terrible. First of all, many of the photos are only a short time after surgery when the patient has not completely healed or there are more surgeries to go. Phalloplasty usually takes at least two surgeries. Second of all, I am not sure we are looking at the same photos. I think some phalloplasties look excellent, although they are not exactly like the penises of men who were born with penises. I am all for medical science developing to the point where they can do an even better job. And, yes, I know at least some gay men and some straight women who enjoy having sex with a penis a transman got through surgery. Almost all transmen with genital surgery, by the way, still orgasm. The research done of transgender people who have had surgeries show that most of them are much more satisfied after surgery than before and almost none regret the surgery.

    So now I have said my piece and I will see if this actually remains on this site or is deleted. I wish you all the best, but encourage you to reconsider your views on this subject and to ask yourself what is driving the rejection many of you have of transgender people. That is what seems to me to be behind many of your comments. What is it really that makes you feel the need to post about this subject with such certainty, revulsion, pity, or self-righteousness? Maybe, instead, you should get to know some of us, and see that we are not that different from you, except our experience of who we are in terms of our gender does not match what the world (and some parts of our body) indicated when we were born.

    Please realize that what you are posting on this website, and probably saying elsewhere, is harmful and may not reflect the reality of the lives of many transgender people.

    Like

    • “It is incredibly important that the decision to transition not be hasty, and I strongly suggest that anyone thinking of going down this path, or whose child is thinking of going down this path, not rush into anything and see a psychotherapist who has been well trained in this area. I would like to add that none of the therapists I have seen have been interested in fast tracking me, or anyone else to my knowledge, into any aspect of transition. They are not just cheerleaders for transition, or should not be. The goal is to help the person come to understand the right path for them and which steps they need to take.”

      The regular contributors of this site, almost to a person, have teenage (and some now young adult) children, mostly daughters, who are sudden-onset trans-identifying. Almost ALL of us have had exactly the opposite experience from what you describe above. While my daughter and our experience and the specifics are not exactly like every situation, the broad outlines are very similar.

      My daughter had zero issue with her physical body and being female until she went to high school and met a person who was trans-identifying. Then she insisted on immediate transition at 14. I felt this was hasty and very ill-advised. I sought out therapists and described my daughter’s history of anxiety and the year and a half of going from excellent student to failure, a lack of mastering social skills and becoming isolated, a past with instances of rage and destruction, and verbal and emotional outbursts. The person would obviously be listening and ask a few questions. I would give this history and then I would say, “She has recently said she feels she is trans.” Then, every single therapist I spoke to would say, “Well, I need to see you and her so we can start her on hormones and get her on a path to surgery.” Every single therapist. I spoke to at least 15. I know many parents here have had a similar experience.

      Before I started off on this journey with my child, I thought that any professional would definitely DIAGNOSE individuals. Every disorder has false positives. People with mental illnesses are known to take a lot of time to be properly considered and many disorders have similar symptoms. Girls and young women are often misdiagnosed because it’s thought that they do not have many conditions when, in fact, they often present differently than boys and men (such as with ADHD and autism). I was quickly and completely disabused of the idea that most therapists were operating as you say. Every single one diagnosed my kid within 15 or 20 minutes, during an initial phone interview. My multiple experiences were exactly the opposite of what you describe. This is a common experience among the parents who read and comment here.

      As a point of reference, I have two other daughters with mental health concerns — much more run-of-the-mill ones — OCD, ADHD, anxiety, and depression. I interviewed therapists for them via phone, as well. With those very common concerns (and, honestly, fairly straightforward, common symptoms) not a single person ventured to diagnose my daughters based on a brief history and descriptions on the phone. Each one spoke generally about symptomology and stressed that they would need to take a detailed history and speak to my daughters before making definite diagnoses.

      The situation surrounding children and trans issues are sui generis. The usual caution and ethics seem not to apply. It’s not investigate, consider, diagnose. It’s affirm and onward to transition on the first mention of trans identification. People who disagree are shamed and frightened by providers. We seek help and are told that if we don’t do exactly what our children demand, they’ll kill themselves. That’s just fear-mongering.

      I’m sure you’ll understand that most of us will trust our lying eyes and ears and how exactly we’ve been treated over your happy talk about how you THINK we our kids are being treated.

      Liked by 3 people

      • I’m sorry if it seemed I was dismissing your concerns. After posting my comment I read through the site more and, not being a child or adolescent when I began to transition in the current climate, and having an acquaintance with a number of doctors and psychotherapists, I was speaking from my own experience. I also can validate some of your and other parents concerns. It does seem there are people, maybe especially young people, who begin physical transition quickly and where, for some, more caution may be warranted. I do think a lot more research is needed. I really feel for what many of the parents with transgender identifying or gender non conforming children are going through and I can understand that there seem to be, based on the reports I have read on this site, families where children or adolescents are being fast-tracked into medical intervention. I agree that part of a parent’s role is to urge caution and to carefully evaluate any major steps their child wants to take. Transition should not be taken lightly and there should be some checks in the system, I think, that allowing for time for careful evaluation and monitoring before irreversible steps are taken may make a lot of sense for the majority of people. Also, every case is different. Basically, I am saying I think there are legitimate questions about what the standard of care for transgender identifying people or gender nonconforming people should be. Part of the problem, I believe, is that most of the people involved are very well meaning, but not only is there a lack of research there is a lack of good training for professionals.

        I want to add that I do think there are also legitimate concerns to the potential downsides of strictly denying the reported experience of gender dysphoria among young (and old) people. Suicide, yes is one potential outcome. Misery, a sense of disconnection from oneself, depression, anxiety, and self-hatred, as well as alienation from family and others are problems. There is another post on this site by a Jungian therapist where I think she makes some valid points about this and other issues, although I may not agree with her on everything.

        With that being said, I am reporting on the professionals I have met who (for the most part, but not entirely) took my concerns seriously and assured me there was no rush to any decision making. This was especially true of the mental health professionals I encountered. I am an adult, not a child though, and so puberty blocking was not a decision that needed to be made with any rapidity.

        I urge all the parents on here to simply listen to your children, love your children, and express your concerns, but also recognize that the best path for your child might be to transition in some manner. Or, it might not be. Transitioning has its own set of struggles and problems. I am not denying that. But it does not mean that the person doing so is deluded, psychotic, brainwashed, or just giving into peer pressure or some kind of mass hysteria or cult. There are many of us that need to do this and that also live very happy lives as transgender people. As an added point, I did not express to my family when I was a child or adolescent any of the dysphoria about my body that I was feeling. But my not expressing it to them does not mean it was not there. I did not have to words to express it and I was also silenced by shame and by not even having the idea of what “transgender” is. So for some (but not all) young people their experience might be similar.

        In my response, I was also coming from a place of being disturbed by the tone of some people posting on this site. Some people demeaned and devalued transgender bodies and lives. There is no reason to do this. It is simply hurtful, and I might add, ill informed.

        I wish the best for you and your family.

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  15. “As a psychologist and as a transman, I imagine I have done a lot more research on this than the majority of people who have written on this site.”

    Indeed. You imagine!

    It is NOT a “very few, rare people who have transitioned through hormones and/or surgery and have come to regret their transition.” Obviously, you haven’t done your homework. There are many trans-identified kids who desist — in fact, the vast majority. Further, there are several people who do regret their transitions, and some have transitioned back to their actual sex. Again, do your homework!

    Katiesan is exactly correct that nearly all people currently working in the field of gender are ideologically driven to affirm and trans (as fast as possible — before they can change their minds) all (or nearly all) kids who come their way, despite the personal past histories of these kids, and the reports of their parents. It takes hubris to imagine that you know a kid better after 15 minutes than their parents know them after living with them for over a decade. However, people ideologically driven are doing this for their own emotional purposes, rather than putting the kids first. “Trans or die!” is an emotionally laden plea entered in order to produce profound guilt and anxiety in parents who are only trying to protect their kids.

    Perhaps if you read this site extensively, you would understand that this is the best read and most informed group of people commenting on the trans phenomenon today.

    You write, “What is it really that makes you feel the need to post about this subject with such certainty, revulsion, pity, or self-righteousness? Maybe, instead, you should get to know some of us, and see that we are not that different from you…”

    So, another emotional attack on people commenting here. YOU speak with such certainty that you can judge total strangers posting here. So what is it about YOU? Pot, meet kettle, at the very least. You can not debate facts, so you want to attack everyone posting here, and label us as revolted, pitiful, and self-righteous, despite the fact that you don’t actually know a single one of us. How judgemental, Ms Psychology Major! Further, it is both speculation and a red herring to suggest that we don’t know any trans*people. You don’t know who we know! Stick to the facts! Most of us have met several trans*people. The conduct and emotional status of the ones we do know drives our concern.

    Nothing you have said proves that we should treat transient mental illnesses with radical surgeries and hormones.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. It’s hard to tell from the posts, but I’m guessing (and I could be wrong) that Sam has already traveled far, far down the road of transforming Sam’s original female body into something else. As we know, many although not all of those changes are irreversible. Sam is stuck with them, like it or not, decide it was the wrong thing or not, the Rubicon has now been crossed and isn’t going to be un-crossed. Given those facts, Sam isn’t about to keep an open mind about what we’re saying here; doing so could lead to unbearable dissonance given Sam’s life choices. Why does Sam believe that other people, including parents and children, should endorse and ratify Sam’s choices? Because so much of this whole “transgender project” does seem to involve forcing others to believe and act in certain, counter-factual ways, doesn’t it?

    Two things: first, Sam asks whether we know transgender people, and of course many of us really do and even live with them! I suppose that was almost a facetious question. But here are questions for Sam in turn: how many breast cancer survivors do you know? How many women who would give anything to get their original breasts back have you talked to? How many chronically ill people do you know? How many people do you know who are on a daily regimen of drugs without which they will actually (not figuratively) die? And, finally, and most obviously, how many children is it exactly that you have, Sam, that entitles you to come to a parenting blog and give parenting advice?

    Which leads, in fact, to the second point. Sam is indeed an expert on Sam. That is the exact limit of Sam’s expertise, which notably does not extend to my, or anyone else’s, children. What Sam, and all the rest of Sam’s friends, need to know is that we do not need, and actively resent, their efforts to meddle with our children. Go forth, Sam, live your life and may it make you happy and fulfilled in all the ways you think it will. But. Leave our kids alone.

    Like

  17. Oh, and by the way – from your posts, Sam, it looks like you are seriously considering phalloplasty, perhaps with Curtis Crane. One piece of input, I have no idea whether this is true for Crane or not, but the vast, vast majority of medical malpractice cases never even reach the pleading stage. Most medical error/malpractice is never acted upon, in a legal sense, at all, and most cases are resolved separately with the insurance carrier long before reaching court. Especially for genital surgery, where the plaintiffs would be be very leery about going public, it’s highly likely that the six cases that were filed represent just the tip of a much larger iceberg. (And, again, since all of this is confidential until it reaches the complaint stage, I can’t know that about Crane specifically.)

    Most doctors, even those in controversial specialties like Crane’s, go their entire careers without a single malpractice case or complaint. If it were me and I was trying to think carefully about all this, the volume and nature of these cases is NOT something I would ignore or assume away.

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