A new social contagion, called Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria, is making families miserable as previously contented girls attempt to become boys through hormones and surgery.
On Sunday, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) published an article by journalist Abigail Shrier detailing the challenges of parents whose high-achieving teenage or college-age daughters – girls who had never before shown gender confusion – suddenly decided to take on new male personae via new names, men’s clothing, testosterone, facial surgery, and double mastectomies.
For her article, entitled “When Your Daughter Defies Biology,” Shrier interviewed 18 parents, 14 of them mothers, who were aghast at their daughters’ plans, but found few allies in their attempts to stop their beloved girls from choosing male hormones and mutilation.
Brown University social-health researcher Lisa Littman dubbed the recent phenomenon of young women seeking sex-reassignment out of the blue as “rapid onset gender dysphoria” or ROGD. Like suicide, cutting, and bulimia, ROGD is a social contagion, albeit one that primarily affects girls. Unfortunately, ROGD – “and not necessarily its sufferers – gets full support from the medical community,” Shrier wrote.
“The standard for dealing with teens who assert they are transgender is ‘affirmative care’ – immediately granting the patient’s stated identity,” she continued.
One of the purveyors of testosterone to these teenage girls is Planned Parenthood, America’s largest abortion chain.
“Planned Parenthood furnished testosterone to young women on an ‘informed consent’ basis,” Shrier reported, “without requiring any psychological evaluation.”
Health plans for 86 American universities, including those of the Ivy League, cover not only male hormones but the surgeries involved in making girls appear male.
The weight of support for subjecting healthy young women to experimental medical procedures that will render them infertile and may permanently damage them in other ways is crushing for parents who want to save their daughters.
“Nearly every force in society is aligned against these parents: Churches scramble to rewrite their liturgies for greater ‘inclusiveness.’ Therapists and psychiatrists undermine parental authority with immediate affirmation of teens’ self-diagnoses. Campus counselors happily refer students to clinics that dispense hormones on the first visit. Laws against ‘conversion therapy,’ which purports to cure homosexuality, are on the books in 14 states and the District of Columbia. These statutes also prohibit ‘efforts to change a patient’s . . . gender identity,’ in the words of the New Jersey law—effectively threatening counselors who might otherwise dissuade teens from proceeding with hormone treatment or surgery.”
Some girls use emotional blackmail to force their parents to submit to their wants, threatening to cut off all contact with them.
A key influencer is social media and the internet, where young women who have undergone the “transition” assure their fans that they have found new confidence and happiness. Schrier listed Reddit, Tumbler, Instagram, and YouTube as places where young women who think “becoming” young men is the solution to their problems can find “an endless supply of mentors.” These social media stars don’t mention the side effects, but they do tell their fans how they can break away from their own “unsupportive” parents.
‘Don’t think for a second it can’t happen to you’
On Monday, author and American Conservative columnist Rod Dreher addressed the ROGD phenomenon in an article called “ROGD Hell.”
“Don’t think for a second it can’t happen to you,” Dreher warned and pointed out that those influencing girls were “not just random teens on YouTube.”
“Last year, a pastor here in Baton Rouge told me one of his congregants, a mother, came to him saying that when her 7th grade daughter started claiming to be a boy, the mom went to the middle school guidance counselor to seek more information about what was going on in the daughter’s social group,” he continued.
“The guidance counselor told the mom that her best course of action was to ‘accept your son as he is.’”
Parents of other young women who have suddenly decided they are, or want to be, men responded in Dreher’s comments’ box to express their suffering.
“Mrs DK” wrote: “My 20-year-old has been on testosterone for a year and has made an appointment for a consult for a double mastectomy. She is paying for the consult and is aware that she will have to fund all co-pays related to transition. Apparently, some college girls are able to get loans to do this. I plan to go along on the consult and would be interested in any thoughts from your commenters. It is impossible to express my level of anguish about this.”
Another commentator underscored that it is not just the “progressive,” same-sex “marriage” supporting parents featured in the WSJ whose daughters are demanding sex-reassignment.
“My kid went to a parochial grade school and a Catholic high school and we went to church regularly … there were nighttime prayers, Bible stories, Narnia books. You know?” he wrote.
“And yet — for the past nearly 5 years, starting at age 15, my girl has been thinking it’d be a lot better to be a boy. We have managed to keep her from physical transition (other than, unfortunately, she binds), and she still is socially female as well (barely). Nevertheless, we are still in gender limbo and it could go either way.”
The parent asked for prayers and for readers not to assume that ROGD is caused by progressive parents or bad parenting skills.
“…If your family’s not affected by this, be grateful to your God and don’t pat yourself on the back too hard,” he said.
“You can’t imagine what it’s like to have the entire educational/med/psych/media world fighting against your parental values and common sense.”