Before I pose my question, here are some statements from a slideshow on "Understanding Gender Nonconformity in Childhood and Adolescence" by Robert Garofalo, attributed to the Children's Hospital of Chicago, and hosted by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). They officially support affirming gender change in children, however there is a group of pediatricians who actively reject that position.
According to this slideshow, gender is a social construct (page 7), which "[v]aries by place, time period" .
Next I'd like to list the slideshow's listed side effects and irreversible effects of hormone therapy. Pages 39-41 show the side effects of testosterone therapy.
Irreversible Effect of Testosterone Therapy
- Lower voice pitch
- Increased hair growth (arms, legs, chest, ab)
- Mustache/beard growth
- Male pattern hair loss (temples, crown) and possibly baldness
- Genital changes (clitoral growth and vaginal dryness/fragility)
Side Effects/Risks: Testosterone
- Increased cardiovascular risk
- Increased weight
- Decreased HDL, Increased Triglycerides
- Increased BP
- Increased insulin resistance
- Mood changes: irritability, aggression
- Theoretical risk: breast/endometrial cancer
Given these side effects, on what medical basis do health professional support this?
If a person doesn't like themselves they get help with their self-value. They learn the valuable things about their unique identity and also identify why they began to devalue themselves and deal with those root issues. People with phobia's are taught to manage and improve their phobia, not embrace it.
My point is not to compare one disorder to another, but to show that regardless of the type of disorder that the standard treatment is not acceptance, but rather to reveal deeper issues and otherwise manage and overcome the disorder.
Gender Dysphoria is treated categorically different, but there has been no new category defined on which to base that decision.
I know this is a sensitive topic and has many personal stories, but I'd like to focus on the professional medical position and reasoning for that position.