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Ethics – Transgender regret for teen

November 2017

Australian teenager Patrick Mitchell has decided to return to his birth sex, years after making a transition to be a girl.

In an interview with an Australian TV show, Patrick, who had believed he was a ‘girl trapped in a boy’s body’, opened up about his experience of being diagnosed with gender dysphoria aged 12.

He claimed he was unhappy with his body while on the cusp of puberty, but instead of helping him through puberty to adolescent boyhood, his mother Alison claimed doctors pigeon-holed him ‘so quickly’.

Instead of allowing Patrick a period of transition, his mother gave him puberty blockers and allowed him to take her own oestrogen hormones, with the aim of fusing his bone growth so he would not be broad and tall as a man.

However, after turning 14, Patrick changed his mind and said, ‘I’m just not sure that I am a girl’. He and his mother have since moved to London ‘for a fresh start’.

A report from the Christian Institute says the number of referrals to a London-based gender identity clinic has risen exponentially, given the increased media focus on transgender changes and the social pressure encouraging it.

The report quoted figures from the Tavistock clinic’s Gender Identity Development Service, a London-based NHS clinic which works with children diagnosed with ‘gender identity disorder’.

Referrals to the clinic rose from 1,419 in 2015/16 to 2,016 in 2016/17 — a 42 per cent increase. Referrals have been increasing at an alarming rate since 2009, when there were less than 100.

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