What do you think about UK high court banning puberty blockers for children under age 16?

Those under 18 undergoing any medical intervention must get court approval first.

At 16, Keira Bell became one of the thousands of girls, some as young as 10 or 11, referred to the Tavistock and Portman Trust.

After three one-hour appointments, she was prescribed puberty blockers before she was put on testosterone.

"When I was 20 I had a double mastectomy," she said.

She believed the treatment would help her "achieve happiness".

Ms. Bell, who began de-transitioning last year, said: "It was heartbreaking to realize I'd gone down the wrong path."


@ anon - in some cases in America, the child was taken away from the parents against their will for gender reassignment. Don’t blame the parents

8 Answers

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago
    Favourite answer

    It's think it's about time. Everyone should be shocked that they've been handing out untested, unapproved (for that application) drugs with known dangerous side-effects, that STERILIZE minors (if they proceed with cross sex hormones) like candy. The UK has been better about it than the US. There are no laws whatsoever in the US.

  • 1 month ago

    As terrorists actions the un should censorship the U.K. and sue.

  • 2 months ago

    The problem is that this is a middle England reaction.  It is bigotry disguised as the law.  Until you could get private hormones and blockers via Gender GP, but they had to move out of the UK.  This was because the GMC took issue with them. Tavistock probably wont issue blockers until somebody is 17 now.  This means that you will see a big rise in self harm and attempted suicides for under 16 trans as their bodies change under puberty.  You will also see desparate parents facing prison for buying blockers from dodgy sources.

    What we actually need is a set of guidelines set down via the courts and the GMC.  Every other country has a standard of care set out, apart from the UK. The GMC and the courts should be able to work out a standard of care criterion, like 2 years of psychologist help, with a second doctor then signing off before referring to an endo.  A legal tick box needs to be set in place.  Also, specific training for doctors so that they can become qualified in this area.  This way, you move from putting all of your eggs into one, or in this case, two baskets.  (Leeds). You can get it sorted out locally, with GP referral.  The waiting list, currently over 2 years, goes down and you get less mental health issues.

    Now about blockers.  They were originally brought out to stop early onset of puberty.  Imagine that your puberty started kicking in when you were seven or eight.  You can imagine some of the problems there, so blockers were used to stop children from developing breasts etc.  This is not untried, it has been going since the 50s.  So if it is ok to use for this, why not to use for trans?  Also, no other medical condition in the world has put this court ruling in place.  It is only in the UK that trans faces the need for a court ruling.  Look at the other medical decisions made every day.  You do not ask your 12 year old if they feel like they need their appendix out.  There is a paper trail of consent between the doctors and the appropriate guardian.

    So rather than saying you can not do this, upping the instance of under 16 attempted suicides (Stonewall - School Report), you might want to start looking at putting the safety checks in place to make this less rushed and more mainstream.

  • 2 months ago

    Listen to her voice.  Then bear in mind that us trans women will now be forced to have our voices break.  This is a terrible decision.  Nobody asks whether cis children are competent to know their own gender.  People are going to kill themselves because of this.  Sometimes puberty blockers need to be given for precocious puberty or hormone-sensitive tumours in children.  Nobody questions that either, because it saves lives.  Well this would've saved lives too.  People should be ashamed of themselves for forcing children to go through the wrong puberty.

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    "After three one-hour appointments, she was prescribed puberty blockers before she was put on testosterone."

    I'll assume that happened. that is wrong in any universe, period.  That breaks EVERY standard set forth by wpath who sets the standards and recommendations for transition, in other words the gender clinic (a clinic required by the NHS) in Britain went rogue.

    On the other hand we have a court that IS causing harm to children with an arbitrary ban on <13 year olds and likely ban on 14-15 year olds.

    The court should have worked out a simple review of the child's medical treatment and the child's readiness AND the child's competency to give consent to an easily reversible procedure, that should not be a rubber stamped review nor should it be an abusive review or arbitrary ban, this decision is simply the courts imposing someone else political and or religious views onto others at the expense of the many for the benefit of the few.

  • 2 months ago

    While you're incorrect about some children in the U.S. being taken away from parents against their will for gender reassignment (that hasn't actually happened), I think the banning of puberty blockers for adolescents under age 16 is a smart, well-considered decision. At that age, no young adult is capable of making that kind of decision in an educated, objective manner.

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    EDIT: See edit below.

    I think most of the failure rests with the gender clinic of the NHS. That patient should have been thoroughly screened before ever being referred  for blockers. It doesn't sound like that happened. It should be noted that the Dutch gender program, which has been treating trans teens for about 30 years, has never had a patient "go down the wrong path". I have to believe they do a much better job of screening patients in the Netherlands.

    That said, I loath the idea of courts getting involved. I don't think this solves anything and may in fact may think worse for trans people because they'll be dealing with judges who will probably have no understanding of gender issues at all.

    Last, I haven't heard any mention of parents in discussions lately. The child cannot give legal consent, but parents can and do. Where was Ms Bell's parents in all this? They have to have given consent, but everyone is blaming the NHS 100%. Some of that blame has to be shared with the parents as well.

    EDIT: "in some cases in America, the child was taken away from the parents against their will for gender reassignment."

    That's bull sh*t, that doesn't happen. In the USA you must have parental consent for treatment. I live here, I know.

    In addition, this Ms Bell later went on and had a mastectomy at 20. Meaning she was transitioning for at least 5 years before she changed her mind? Something doesn't smell right; I doubt we're getting the whole story. People usually do not decide to go back after having transitioned that long. If they do they are often under religious or familial pressure to do so.

  • 2 months ago

    good !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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