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England’s NHS Warns That Most Transgender Minors Could Be Experiencing a ‘Transient Phase’

AP Photo/Armando Franca

The National Health Service (NHS) of England issued a warning this week that most children who identify as “transgender” are going through a “transient phase.” 


The publicly-funded health service issued draft guidance last week on treating children and young people with gender dysphoria, the condition where someone feels that their gender does not align with their biological sex. 

The guidance reportedly stated that physicians should be open to “exploring all developmentally appropriate options” for children who are showing signs of gender dysphoria, keeping in mind that “this may be a transient phase.”

“The clinical approach has to be mindful of the risks of an inappropriate gender transition and the difficulties that the child may experience in returning to the original gender role upon entering puberty if the gender incongruence does not persist into adolescence,” the report stated.

The report added that “social transitioning” should not be seen as a “neutral act” due to the impact it makes on a child’s psychology. Social transitioning includes going by a different name, using “preferred pronouns” and dressing like the opposite gender. In some cases, they will use bathrooms that align with their gender identity instead of their biological sex. 

“Social transition should only be considered where the approach is necessary for the alleviation of, or prevention of, clinically significant distress or significant impairment in social functioning and the young person is able to fully comprehend the implications of affirming a social transition,” the draft read, according to Daily Mail.

This year, the NHS announced that it would shutter its only dedicated gender identity clinic for children, Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust in response to recommendations from an “expert review.” The review criticized the clinic’s long waiting lists and “raised concerns over a lack of consensus about how the health service should assess, diagnose and treat young people seeking gender services,” Reuters noted.


Daily Mail reported that at least 15 children under the age of 4 years old were referred to the Tavistock clinic to undergo “gender-affirming” care, which can include hormone therapy treatments, puberty blockers and sex reassignment surgery. In total, over 5,000 children were referred to the controversial clinic in the past two years. Only half of the referrals were for children aged 15-plus. 

This month, the UK Department for Education removed a charity targeted at transgender children from it’s official government guidance as a mental health resource following several scandals, which Townhall covered

The charity, Mermaids, is a nonprofit supporting transgender and “non-binary” children. Townhall reported this month how a trustee on the board of Mermaids, Dr. Jacob Breslow, resigned after a speech he gave to an organization that provides services to pedophiles resurfaced.

Breslow is an associate professor of gender and sexuality at London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and served on the board of Mermaids. In 2011, he gave a speech with B4U-ACT, a Maryland-based organization focused on “ending stigma” around “minor-attracted persons,” better known as pedophiles.

In Breslow’s presentation, titled “Sexual Alignment: Critiquing Sexual Orientation, The Pedophile, and the DSM V,” he said that “allowing for a form of non-diagnosable minor attraction is exciting, as it potentially creates a sexual or political identity by which activists, scholars and clinicians can begin to better understand Minor Attracted Persons,” according to a report from the New York Post.


“This understanding may displace the stigma, fear and abjection that is naturalized as being attached to Minor Attracted Persons and may alter the terms by which non-normative sexualities are known,” he continued.

Following his resignation, Breslow said in a statement to BBC, that he left the organization so that he wouldn’t “distract from the good work the charity is doing to help transgender and gender-diverse children.”

Shortly after, reports broke that Darren Drew, who worked as the charity’s digital engagement officer, shared “explicit pictures and sexualised images” online. And, it was revealed that children on the Mermaids’ online forum were trying to move conversations about hormone therapy treatment onto a “less closely supervised platform.”

Last week, The Telegraph reported that NHS Scotland was still sending children to Mermaids, despite the scandals that led the government to remove it from its guidance.

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