Lee, who wants gender reassignment, has been in the treatment queue for seven years – now London’s trans youth are speaking | Foreign countries

Lee who wants gender reassignment has been in the treatment

LONDON – Testosterone saved me. I don’t think I could have done without it. I am much happier and my confidence is good, 19 years old Lee smiles casually to in London.

Lee has started the journey to become a man nine months ago. He received testosterone pills from a private clinic at the age of 18.

According to the founders of the group Strike Back, which supports trans youth, the report on gender reassignment hormones that caused a stir in England could be a danger for young people who want to undergo gender reassignment. They told why.

Lee and 18 years old Temperance do not want to appear under their own names because of the trans hatred they experience. We meet in a park in central London.

The report praises Finland’s line

A respected pediatrician Hilary Cass published recently the report, which he did with York University for four years. A report commissioned by the NHS of England’s public health service criticized the treatment given by the NHS to young people suffering from sexual anxiety. According to the report, children and young people received drugs that stop the onset of puberty too easily. Mental health support was not given and many regretted the treatment later.

Cass’s report urges the NHS in England to follow the line of Finland and Sweden, which emphasizes mental health support.

Cassi’s report has extensively interviewed experts, doctors and trans youth and their families. Yet Lee and Temperance do not recognize their own experience in the report.

– Many people now think that children just walk into a public healthcare clinic and are given hormones and drugs that block the onset of puberty. It’s not that easy. I’ve been in the waiting list for seven years and I’m still there, says Lee.

The report wants to define the treatment of young people precisely. According to it, there is not enough information even globally about the safety of blocker drugs for people under the age of 18, and they can cause bone weakening, among other things. The NHS has stopped giving the drugs. It has also closed the Gids clinic, which was responsible for the sexual treatment of young people.

Medicines were a salvation for Lee

– When I was younger, I would have liked drugs to stop the onset of puberty. It would have given me a chance to stop and think about what I was doing and understand myself before proceeding with gender reassignment. Because I couldn’t get medication, I struggled with my mental health for a long time, says Temperance.

Lee has also been in the treatment queue since he was 12 years old. Beard hairs are growing on the chin now.

– My grandmother left me money for university. I used them to get hormone therapy from a private doctor. I couldn’t wait any longer, says Lee.

Lee considers the drugs to be life-saving for young people suffering from sexual anxiety. He is pleased with the lowering of the voice. It brings self-confidence in the actor’s studies.

– I didn’t dare to speak before because I hated my girlish voice, she says.

During puberty, breast growth and other changes worried Lee. He did not receive blocker therapy. However, Lee receives support from home. Mom is a psychiatrist. Temperance, on the other hand, has no family. He lives in a trans commune and perseveres on the poverty line. He obtains hormones from outside the system.

Treatment is sought even in the dark

Lee believes that the decision by public health to stop providing adolescents with anti-puberty drugs puts the safety of trans youth at risk.

– The decision of public healthcare to stop giving medicines does not stop people from getting them. It will only become more dangerous. They seek medicine in the dark or get into a spiral of debt. They have to decide whether to pay the rent or the health care they need, Lee reflects.

Lee has already paid 3,500 euros for the tests. In addition, he pays a good 200 euros a month for medical treatment.

The Strike Back group founded by Lee and Temperance is still new. They are preparing a demonstration against the Cass report and hope for at least 150 demonstrators.

The NHS had commissioned a report from Hilary Cass because the number of minors seeking sex reassignment treatment had increased a hundredfold in the past decade. According to the Cass report, an even greater proportion of those seeking treatment are girls in their early teens. They represent the Z generation and the Alpha generation born after 2010.

The number of people who want treatment is increasing because of tolerance, young people believe

In 2009, 15 underage girls were treated at the Gids clinic in London, which specializes in the treatment of young people. In 2016, the number had risen to over a thousand. Hilary Cass blames the trend on, among other things, social media.

Temperance and Lee see that the rapid increase in the number of young people in sex clinics is due to an increase in tolerance. Young people dare to admit more openly that they want to correct their gender.

– People started to feel safer. They felt heard and seen. They trusted that transgender people would get treatment, Temperance reflects.

Lee reminds us that at the same time Britain also accepted same-sex marriages.

– Many LGBT people felt that they could finally come out as themselves, says Lee.

British UCL University research according to the number of transgender people has increased in every age group. In 2000, transgender people were one in 15,000 citizens. In 2018, the proportion had risen to one in 2,500.

The author of the report is threatened

Mermaids, an organization that supports trans, non-binary and gender-questioning young people, has commented on the Cass report, saying that England’s public health service is failing trans young people, as they have to wait up to six years for treatment. According to the organization, the politicization of support for trans youth weakens the services they receive.

Lee and Temperance worry about the future. Lee sees an increase in anti-transgender rhetoric.

– I am terrified for transgender people. Maybe the suicide rate is going up or people are harming themselves.

Cass’s report describes a toxic climate of discussion, which makes doctors afraid to treat young people or speak their views publicly. Hilary Cass herself tells in The Times that he received a lot of hate mail after the publication of the report and does not dare to use public transport.

Lee and Temperance face constant hate speech, even on Twitter promoting the upcoming protest. Up to a thousand hate messages quickly accumulated under it.

Young people see trans hatred as the reason

Lee says he doesn’t openly talk about his transgenderism in acting studies, in case it makes it difficult to find a job. He reminds me of a year ago out of anger. The British coffee chain Costa Coffee published a picture of a person who has just undergone gender reassignment in its advertisement. People opposed to the so-called woke culture started to boycott the cafe.

Temperance sees Cass’s report as embodying contemporary British politics.

– The government wants to get rid of transgenders. They don’t want to give us rights, Temperance snaps.

Lee hopes that in time he will be viewed as a man, not as a transgender. He believes the treatment will save his life.