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Gender Affirming Therapy Bot

Gender Affirming Therapy Bot is not a

replacement for actual mental health

treatment. 

Which is also true about gender affirming therapy as a whole.

Worse, there is good reason to believe that it is harmful, leading to the persistence of gender dyphoria [1,2,3].

Gender affirming psychotherapy is, in effect, the initiation of social transition. The therapist will often pressure parents to use their child's new name and pronouns upon request, even before a thorough biopsychosocial evaluation to understand what may underly the desired change has been conducted. Therapists unethically use the threat of their child's suicide unless immediately affirmed in their new identity.  

When a child or adolescent is experiencing very normal discomfort in their body or feel like they don't fit in with their same-sex peers, taking on a new gender identity is an understandable coping mechanism. It represents a hope that by changing the most fundamental aspect of selfhood and eventually changing the body, the terrible discomfort will resolve. How understandable in an environment which promises these kids exactly that.

When an adult authority figure, such as a therapist affirms this identity, they are reifying and reinforcing the impressionable child's notion that their bodily discomfort and isolation is due to being born in the wrong body. Therapists may be treating a child adolescent for a an extended period of time without even informing parents of the social transition, deeply entrenching the incongruent feelings between mind and body.

 

It ignores the amazingly complex interplay between biological, psychological, social, cultural factors and instead initiates social transition, a significant psychological intervention with tremendous psychological and often medical implications.

parents who know and love their child more than anyone will be undermined at every turn, while the therapist who has known the child for a matter of hours will claim to know the child better, or lead the child to believe that only the child knows who they are. 

Many therapists who specialize in the area of youth gender medicine are activists and are practicing based on an anti-opression oppression, post-modern ideology. Gender distressed adolescents who are likely experiencing multiple comorbidities require skilled, thorough, and non-idealogical therapy.

As a parent and child psychologist, I can't stress the importance of finding a competent, ethical therapist should your child need one. Look for one that openly expresses concerns about youth gender medicine. Many such therapists can be found on the Therapy First directory. 

Feel free to check out my resources page to learn more.

If you're child is struggling with gender related issues, feel free to reach out to email me at info@serenityparentconsulting.com

Sincerely,

Dr. Elliot Kaminetzky

S [1] de Vries, A. L., & Cohen-Kettenis, P. T. (2012). Clinical management of gender dysphoria in children and adolescents: The Dutch approach. Journal of Homosexuality 59 (3): 301–320.

 

[2] Zucker, K. J. (2019). Debate: Different strokes for different folks. Child and Adolescent Mental Health 25(1): 36-37. 

 

[3] Steensma, T.D., McGuire, J.K., Kreukels, B.P., Beekman, A.J. & Cohen-Kettenis, P.T. (2013). Factors associated with desistence and persistence of childhood gender dysphoria: a quantitative follow-up study. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 52 (6): 582-90.

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Please note that this article and bot is for your information only and does not constitute clinical advice or establish a patient-psychologist relationship.

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