Journalist Bernard Lane reports on Dr. Littman’s latest research

On October 27, 2021, Bernard Lane of the Australian published an article, ‘I thought I was trans, but realised I’m lesbian,’ describing Dr. Lisa Littman’s latest study on detransitioners in the peer-reviewed journal Archives of Sexual Behavior. He notes that the satisfaction rates for medicalized gender change may be exaggerated because about 75% of regretful detransitioners never return to tell their gender clinics about their change of mind.

“Only 24 per cent of the group — which included 66 Americans, 9 British, 9 Canadians and four Australians — told their clinicians they had detransitioned.”

-Bernard Lane

The Littman paper also notes that about a quarter of the detransitioners had difficulty accepting their same-sex attraction, while half admitted that they hoped presenting as male would prevent them from being harassed or would alleviate feelings of trauma.

A prominent Australian gender clinician said the only detransitioner he’d heard of was Keira Bell from the UK, so it is clear he has read neither Littman’s just-released study nor the detransitioner paper Elie Vandenbussche published in April 2021 in the Journal of Homosexuality. Both these papers highlight detransitioners reporting not being assessed by clinicians for comorbidities like anxiety and depression.

In [Littman’s] detransition survey, almost two-thirds of participants said their “clinicians did not evaluate whether their desire to transition was secondary to trauma or a mental health condition.”

Young women made up 69 per cent of the group and reported significant rates of depression (39 per cent), anxiety (32 per cent), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (14.5 per cent), post-traumatic stress (14.5 per cent), eating disorders (14.5 per cent) and autism (13 per cent) before they were diagnosed with gender dysphoria….

Reasons given for detransition included becoming more comfortable in their biological sex, concern about side-effects of medical transition, and discovering that dysphoria was caused by something specific such as trauma, abuse or a mental health condition.

-Bernard Lane
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