60 Minutes Runs Explosive Segment Featuring Young Transgender Individuals Who Decided To Reverse Course
On Sunday, CBS News’ “60 Minutes” ran a segment about transgender issues facing today’s young people in America, which featured, in part, transgender individuals who decided to reverse course after taking hormones and undergoing surgery.
The segment featured how transgender activists have pushed back on legislation across the U.S. that aims to protect children from undergoing potentially life-altering medical procedures before they are old enough to understand the ramifications of their decisions. One of the transgender advocates said the fact that so many transgender individuals had decided to de-transition was proof that more resources were needed for trans individuals, not fewer.
Grace Lidinsky-Smith, who decided to transition in her early 20s and later decided to reverse course, said that the amount of questions she was asked by health care professionals prior to her decision to take hormones was minimal.
Lesley Stahl: Did the therapist not question you about how deep the feeling was and what it was stemming from?
Grace Lidinsky-Smith: She didn’t go — really go into what my gender dysphoria might’ve been stemming from. We only did a few sessions.
Lesley Stahl (NARRATION): Because she was over 18 and didn’t need parental consent, she says she merely signed an informed consent form at a clinic and got hormone shots.
Grace Lidinsky-Smith: They asked me, “So, why do you wanna go on testosterone?” And I said, “Well, being a woman just isn’t working for me anymore.” And they said, “Okay.”
Lesley Stahl: So, that was that. You got your prescription for testosterone?
Grace Lidinsky-Smith: Uh-huh. Yup.
Lesley Stahl (NARRATION): Just four months after she started testosterone, she says she was approved for a mastectomy, what’s called top surgery, that she told us was traumatic.
Lesley Stahl: You know, I’m kinda surprised because, based on everything you’ve said up to now, I would’ve thought you’d have a great sense of relief.
Grace Lidinsky-Smith: I started to have a really disturbing sense that like a part of my body was missing, almost a ghost limb feeling about being like, there’s something that should be there. And the feeling really surprised me but it was really hard to deny.
Lesley Stahl (NARRATION):And so she detransitioned by going off testosterone and then went back to the clinic and, she says, complained to the doctor that the process didn’t follow the WPATH guidelines.
Grace Lidinsky-Smith: I can’t believe that I transitioned and detransitioned, including hormones and surgery, in the course of, like, less than one year. It’s completely crazy.
Dr. Laura Edwards-Leeper, the first psychologist at the first major youth gender clinic in the U.S., said that she was “greatly concern[ed]” with where “the field has been going.”
“I feel like what is happening is unethical and irresponsible in some places,” Dr. Edwards-Leeper said. “Everyone is very scared to speak up because we’re afraid of not being seen as being affirming or being supportive of these young people or doing something to hurt the trans community. But even some of the providers are trans themselves and share these concerns.”
Other young transgender individuals that “60 Minutes” interviewed said that they felt like they “didn’t get enough pushback on transitioning.”
“I went for two appointments and after the second one I had, like, my letter to go get on cross-sex hormones,” an individual named Garrett said. Garrett went from taking hormones to getting his testicles removed in just three months, and later got a breast augmentation and felt significantly worse afterward.
“I had never really been suicidal before until I had my breast augmentation,” Garrett said. “And about a week afterwards I wanted to, like, actually kill myself. Like, I had a plan and I was gonna do it, but I just kept thinking about, like, my family to stop myself. It kind of felt like how am I ever going to feel normal again, like other guys now?”
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