A Detransitioner’s Message to Her Doctors
Many people have never even heard of detransitioners (those who were trans and have now de-transitioned back to their natal sex). But this group is far, far larger than what is generally acknowledged in the mainstream-media trans-narrative. A recent survey through social media that lasted two weeks found over 200 detransitioned women. This is a staggering number given the low rates of regret generally reported in the medical literature.
This account is one of the most powerful stories I have heard. I really encourage you to read the source article. But if somehow I can’t convince you, here are some excerpts:
When someone tries to do good and ends up hurting you it makes it hard to trust them. I did trust my providers (as much as I can trust any medical professional) and they helped me destroy myself. Can they accept whatever responsibility they had in that or will they deny it? If I open myself up and tell them how the drugs they gave me affected my life in the long run will they be able to face that? Are they going to say it was all my fault and I should’ve known better? Will they actually be able to do anything that will help me now? Are they going to treat me like I’m crazy? Are they going to get defensive? What should I expect if I tell my old providers that I transitioned because I was severely harassed for being a lesbian and traumatized by my mom’s suicide?
I ask myself what reaction I’d most want if I did tell my old providers about how transitioning hurt me. I’d want them to apologize to me. I’d want them to recognize the harm they were a part of. Not take it all on themselves but accept their role in it. Just hearing something simple like “I didn’t mean to hurt you and I’m sorry I did” would be enough.
Could my old providers see that I am not only a challenge to the validity of their work but that my experience also points to new possibilities? That my story offers not only an example of how transitioning can be harmful but also offers up other methods to treat dysphoria and help people find peace with themselves? Because while I have suffered, I have also come to a better place through detransitioning and accepting myself. I found what I was looking for not in the testosterone they prescribed me but in embracing what I once rejected in myself and through connecting with other women. Can they hear and appreciate how I gained more from my own efforts than from their attempts to help me? Can they hear how they may not be necessary to relieve the suffering of the group they have pledged themselves to serve?
My providers didn’t help me. Taking testosterone didn’t get to the root of my suffering, it only relieved it temporarily. I came out of my transition with many of the same problems I had before and then some. Being supported in my trans identity didn’t help me, letting go of it and accepting myself as a woman did. Changing my body didn’t help me find lasting peace. I helped myself by tracing back my trans identity and dysphoria to trauma and working through how I’d been hurt. Developing a daily meditation practice ended up improving my life in many more ways than taking t ever did and helped me become more present in my body. Reaching out to other women, specifically other lesbians and detransitioned women, helped enormously.
When I think of the core message I want to impart to my old providers, I come up with this:
“You thought you were doing good but you were giving me tools to hurt myself. I thought I needed to come to you to get what I needed to be happy but I was wrong. We both had no idea what we were doing, what was really going on. Your good will didn’t end my suffering, it increased it. You supported the splits in myself. Your kindness led to more scars, not less. I know you want to do good, so show me what your compassion looks like when someone comes back to tell you that your efforts almost ruined them. I can forgive you if you can face what you’ve done to me as I’ve had to face what I’ve done to myself. I’ll feel more at peace if I can see doubts rise across your face, if you have the strength to consider that I may not be an isolated case. Listen, you did not help me except to move me further away from myself. You did not help me, I helped myself come back from the damage we both took part in. I found what I needed on my own, found the strength to put my knowledge into practice with the help of other women. I don’t need your acceptance or your chemical offerings, I don’t need to come back to you anymore. This is the last you’ll hear from me. I never needed your help and now I’m working hard to let other women know they don’t need your help either.”