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Trans Hormones, Surgery Not ‘Necessary in Order to Prevent Suicide’: Study

February 28, 2024

Transgender hormone injections and surgeries do not reduce the likelihood of suicide for people diagnosed with gender dysphoria, according to a new study from the founder of Finland’s first pediatric gender clinic. The cause of trans-identifying people’s high suicide rate lies with existing poor mental health, often from conditions ranging from schizophrenia to bipolar disorder. The study’s key finding eviscerates the most popular question posed to dubious parents by the transgender industry: “Would you rather have a living daughter or a dead son?”

Gender reassignment interventions — cross-sex hormone injections and/or transgender surgeries, abbreviated as “GR” in the report — have “not been shown to reduce even suicidal ideation, and suicidal ideation is not equal to actual suicide risk,” concluded the study, published in the prestigious BMJ Mental Health.

A team of Finnish researchers followed the 16,643 people under the age of 23 who entered Finland’s gender clinics from 1996 to 2019. Initially, they noted that the suicide rate for trans-identifying people ranged from 350% to 1,900% higher than the average citizen — but that statistic alone created an incomplete, and misleading, picture. Studies, often conducted by pro-trans ideologues, ignored the fact that people diagnosed with gender dysphoria often suffer a bewildering number of psychological comorbidities, including autism, depression, bipolar disorder, and many other conditions. “Only one study attempted to consider the role of psychiatric morbidity in suicide risk, and in it, the suicide rate among transgender adults who underwent [“gender reassignment”] surgery was approximately three times higher than that of matched controls after accounting for psychiatric morbidity,” she wrote.

“When psychiatric treatment needs, sex, birth year and differences in follow-up times were accounted for, the suicide mortality of both those who proceeded and did not proceed to GR did not statistically significantly differ from that of” the control group. “This does not support the claims that is necessary in order to prevent suicide.”

Analyzing data of Finnish people who underwent gender procedures, they found that trans-identifying people’s higher suicide rate is caused by poorer overall mental health, stemming from other psychological conditions — which herding trans-identifying people into so-called “gender-reaffirming care” ignores.

“Psychiatric morbidities are also common in this population. Therefore, the risk of suicide related to transgender identity and/or [gender dysphoria] per se may have been overestimated,” the study noted. “The association was fully explained by psychiatric treatment history.”

In the end, “Death by suicide was significantly predicted by a high number of psychiatric treatment contacts, and borderline significantly predicted by male sex and earlier birth year.” In other words, suicide came down to the severity of a patient’s mental illness as measured by number of treatments, and the stereotypical association of suicide with males.

“It is of utmost importance to identify and appropriately treat mental disorders in adolescents experiencing [gender dysphoria] to prevent suicide,” the study concluded.

One of the study’s authors established her nation’s first gender transition clinic for minors in 2011. Dr. Riittakerttu Kaltiala, the chief adolescent psychiatrist at Finland’s Tampere University Hospital, has begun to sound the warning about overly simplistic diagnoses, relying on single-variable analysis, concluding that transgender treatments act as a silver bullet to cure all young people’s mental health issues.

So-called “gender-affirming care” is failing young people in every corner of the globe, she said.

Gender transition has gotten out of hand,” Kaltiala wrote in an exposé in The Free Press. “The young people we were treating were not thriving.” Though young people sometimes “insisted their lives had improved and they were happier,” she and her colleagues across Europe noticed their patients “were withdrawing from all social activities. They were not making friends. They were not going to school.”

After years of experimentation, Finland’s national medical body, COHERE, concluded a 2020 investigation into transgender procedures for minors by stating, “In light of available evidence, gender reassignment of minors is an experimental practice.”

In so doing, Finland joined numerous European nations in rolling back transgender procedures for minors.

Their actions, bolstered by the latest study, undercuts the most ubiquitous question transgender clinic personnel ask parents who question whether transgender procedures are the best solution for their beloved children: “Would you rather have a living son or dead daughter?” The transgender industry’s high-pressure sales tactics regularly, falsely, claim a trans-identified child will commit suicide without immediate “support.”

The study triggered trans activists, who lashed out after its publication and a subsequent story publicizing its findings by the New York Post’s Benjamin Ryan. Tony Morrison, senior director of Communications for the LGBTQ pressure group GLAAD, wrote the Finnish story off as “junk science.”

“I stand by my reporting,” replied Ryan on X, formerly known as Twitter. He seemingly brushed off Morrison’s ad hominem attack, saying, “I invite everyone to read my reporting and to offer substantive criticisms of it.” 

GLAAD previously rented out a truck in Times Square insisting “the science is settled” on transgender procedures. HHS Assistant Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine, a biological male who identifies as female, has made similar comments.

In fact, a study conducted by the head of a German medical facility that carries out transgender procedures reviewed its patients’ outcomes and concluded: Undergoing a transgender surgery or participating in sports with members of the opposite sex, leaves people lonelier and more depressed. “Persons with transsexualism, after sex reassignment, have considerably higher risks for mortality, suicidal behaviour, and psychiatric morbidity than the general population,” found a Swedish study published in 2011.

These, and numerous other studies, should end the transgender industry’s suicide narrative, said the Finnish study’s author. “Mentally healthy young people who experience their gender in a way that differs from their biological body are not automatically suicidal,” Kaitala told Finland’s largest newspaper. She claimed that they are is “purposeful disinformation, the spreading of which is irresponsible.”

Mental health sources at all levels of experience have echoed her concerns. Tamara Pietzke, who worked for six years as a therapist treating young people who identified as transgender at Washington State’s MultiCare, said she encountered a “concerning new trend” in psychology. “No matter the patient’s history or other mental health conditions that could be complicating the situation, I was simply to affirm that the patient was transgender, and even approve the start of a medical transition,” she wrote in The Free Press. “I believe this rise of ‘affirmative care’ for young people with gender dysphoria challenges the very fundamentals of what therapy is supposed to provide.”

Elizabeth Mondergreen, a graduate student in Psychology, infiltrated a symposium held by the world’s leading transgender medical coalition and found it replete with “emotional blackmail.” One woman who identifies as a man complained to the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH)’s 2022 symposium in Montreal that “over a dozen plastic surgeons in the state of Colorado” refused to carry out an unnecessary double-mastectomy, “The surgery I so, so desperately needed so as to not kill myself, only because of my BMI.”

Sometimes, it is precisely association with the transgender movement that leads to suicide. Teenage girl Yaeli Martinez ran away from her home to a house full of trans-identifying people who promised to “support” her in her “transition” to a male gender identity. But in time, she despaired that she would never actually become a man and took her own life by stepping in front of a train. Her story is powerfully dramatized in “Gender Transformations: The Untold Realities,” a documentary by The Epoch Times, complete with first-person testimony from her grieving mother, Abigail.

“I was screaming. I said, ‘No, I want my daughter,’” Abigail said. “This pain never goes away.”

Ben Johnson is senior reporter and editor at The Washington Stand.