Following the Newsnight segment on “detransitioners”, we’ve listed some evidence-based research about transition ‘regret’ that representatives of the Tavistock and Portman gender identity clinic could have cited on the programme….
1. This research by Prof. Dr P. T. Cohen-Kettenis, VU University Medical Centre, Department of Medical Psychology, shows that of 162 trans adults, only 1 reported they would choose not to transition again. Another had some regrets but would choose to transition again (0.6% regret rate) Sex reassignment: outcomes and predictors of treatment for adolescent and adult transsexuals. You can read the research: “Sex reassignment: outcomes and predictors of treatment for adolescent and adult transsexuals” here.
2. Cecilia Dhejne, at the Center for Psychiatric Research, Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden, found that of people undergoing SRS, regret was about 2.2% and there was a significant decline of regret over time. An analysis of all applications for sex reassignment surgery in Sweden, 1960-2010: prevalence, incidence, and regrets. You can read their paper: “An analysis of all applications for sex reassignment surgery in Sweden, 1960-2010: prevalence, incidence, and regrets.” here.
3. Research by Prof Christina Richards; “Detransition rates in a national UK Gender Identity Clinic” has shown that less than 1% of the 3,398 trans patients who accessed NHS support went on to detransition. This was presented at WPATH and was conducted at the Nottingham Centre for Transgender Health.
4. This study by the Institute of Clinical Neuroscience, Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry, Göteborg University, Sweden, found that the most common reason for detransition is the person couldn’t cope with the family and community support they lost and the experiences of transphobia. Read the paper: “Factors predictive of regret in sex reassignment.” here.
5. It needs to be remembered that there are also many incidents of trans people detransitioning who then retransition later on. This article “I detransitioned because of transphobia, but I always knew I am a woman. Now I’m living as my authentic self” provides a first-hand account by a transgender woman, Kate Hutchinson, from Diversity Role Models, who detransitioned then retransitioned again.
6. Recognising and supporting trans people who choose a different pathway is crucial, but as Lui Asquith from Mermaids importantly stated; we need to make sure that their experiences aren’t cited as a reason to not provide internationally recognised treatment for those trans people who need it.
"You can't make someone be trans."
Lui from @Mermaids_Gender says the transitioning process is “rigorous” and that the experiences of detransitioners should not be used to suggest that people are “being pressured or made into being trans"#Newsnight pic.twitter.com/yqiQVOL2mr
— BBC Newsnight (@BBCNewsnight) November 25, 2019
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