Meet Alex Bertie, the transgender poster boy

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/meet-alex-bertie-the-transgender-poster-boy-z88hgh8b8

More girls are changing their gender from female to male than ever before. And it’s YouTube star Alex Bertie’s example that they’re following. What’s behind the surge in numbers? Janice Turner investigates.

The little girl who was once Alex Bertie liked action figures, toy cars and Lego. Above all she loved video games: her favourite times were sitting beside her father, Paul, a postman, while he played Nintendo and Dreamcast. Consequently at primary school her friends were all boys. “The guys were like, ‘I can’t believe I’ve found a girl who likes video games.’ And to them that’s like gold, isn’t it?”

Little Alex “generally steered clear of anything pink, frilly or sparkly”, but her parents didn’t care that their daughter preferred jeans and shirts. Nor did her many friends, who all lived close by in a modern estate in rural Alderholt, Dorset. And for the happy first 11 years of life, Alex never thought about gender.

At 13, there was the hated school prom: Alex didn’t want to wear a dress, but for once her mother, Michelle, insisted, and so Alex bought the dullest black gown imaginable but wiped the make-up off her face: it felt wrong.

That term, just before summer break, Alex realised she was attracted to her female best friend: “And I ended up, stupidly, telling people at school that we were in a relationship. I didn’t think I was a lesbian or anything like that. I just thought, ‘This is somebody that I’m really into. Why can’t we be together if we have a connection in a similar way that I would if I found a boy that I liked?’ ”

In September, starting at a huge new secondary school, Alex and her girlfriend found themselves surrounded by a jeering gang. News had spread. Alex felt panicked, anxious. She hadn’t even told her parents. “I was known as the ‘weird lesbian girl’ and nobody would speak to me, and suddenly it was just really hard, because I’d never found it difficult to make friends really.” She’d go over to her old mates, the video-game boys, but they’d walk away. “My sexuality tainted their perception of me entirely.” Among the post-pubescent “masculine” boys and “feminine” girls she was an oddity: a masculine girl. “I was the misshapen cookie, the one made at the end with the leftover dough that gets burnt and no one wants to eat.”

Lonely, dumped by her girlfriend, Alex was catcalled and harassed relentlessly by a gang of boys: “I was a bully’s dream: weedy, geeky and gay.” For three years, she endured shouts of “lezzer” or “you’re a boy” without reporting it, growing ever more troubled. She self-harmed by cutting her legs where her mother wouldn’t notice. She hated her now developing body, although cropping her long hair into a cool boyish cut felt great.

At this time, Alex assuaged loneliness by setting up a YouTube channel, making little videos in her bedroom about her sexuality in which she vented her misery but also created a perky online persona who quickly won followers. Then, around 15, Alex told a teacher about the bullying, self-harm and gender dysphoria – a discomfort with your body’s sex. A school counsellor made an appointment with an LGBT group, Over the Rainbow, which gave Alex a folder about transgender issues, including pictures of trans celebrities and how to begin the NHS pathway to transition. It was a lightbulb moment.

“At 15, I fully understood I’m supposed to be male,” Alex says. On YouTube he discovered many other female-to-male video bloggers, changed his girl birth name to Alex and started to strap down his breasts with too-tight swimsuits, before ordering a special breast binder online. “Suddenly,” he says, “my teachers looked out for me in class.”

At 16, he moved to sixth-form college where no one knew him, assuming his new male identity. As a man, his confidence soared. He learnt to act like a boy, to manspread and banter: “At first I was like the bro-iest bro.” On his YouTube channel he declared his intent to medically transition, and what he calls his “quest to a beard” began.

Now I sit with Alex, 21, in that same lime-green bedroom seen by his now 300,000 YouTube followers. In a tank is his snake, Tim. After 18 months on testosterone, injected into his buttock every three months, Alex’s voice is low; he has a passable beard and has filled out a little, but is still a birdlike 5ft 4in and his hair is receding. His periods have stopped and he is now probably infertile. “I’ll adopt,” he says cheerfully.

“I had so much dysphoria and distaste towards my body. And I knew in my heart and soul that I was not supposed to be a woman. It’s difficult for a cisgender person [someone who identifies as the sex they were born with] to understand. Now I have down days, but that’s not for gender reasons any more.”

Alex is a delightful person: by turns kids’-TV-presenter enthusiastic, then suddenly profoundly vulnerable. He recently had a very painful NHS operation to remove both breasts; it took weeks to recover. His book,Trans Mission: My Quest to a Beard, details his journey, as did his frequent videos, through GPs appointments and gender services. He works as a graphic designer for a local private school and is dating another young trans-man called Jake, whom he met in a support group: they transitioned together.

I was the misshapen cookie, the one made at the end that no one wants to eat

And now Alex Bertie is a trans poster boy. His book is a how-to manual for confused girls with an appendix on how to make your own breast binder. Why does he think so many girls now transition? “It’s a lot more public than it used to be. People can see it as an option. Like, ‘Oh, I can actually alleviate this pain I feel towards my body.’ ”

These girls write to him with questions and he replies honestly online; thinks it’s important not to hide the gravity of transition. “How do you cope with gender dysphoria in the bath?” one asks. “Bubbles,” he replies, “lots of bubbles.” Alex’s body hatred endures to some degree, but in his book he says he won’t yet have what is known as “bottom surgery”, using his female genital tissue to create a penis and testicles, one of which acts as a pump to simulate an erection. Both of the two current methods risk infection and loss of orgasm.

He’ll wait until genital surgery has advanced. But, I say, they’ll never create a functioning penis that can ejaculate. “Never say never!” says Alex brightly. Meanwhile he “packs” his boxers with a prosthetic device that allows him – once he’d got the hang of it – to pee standing up. He feels he is now “my authentic self”.

Downstairs I speak with Michelle, who is the deputy manager of a care home. She weeps as she speaks of Alex’s double mastectomy. “Seeing him go through that … But he had such a pure hatred of his body. He said, ‘It’s your fault for giving birth to a girl.’ ” She never really tried to challenge his transition. By the time she even knew, he was being cheered on by thousands of online fans.

As a small girl, Jessie hated dresses and skirts, wearing jeans and T-shirts, and was often mistaken for a boy. Her quirky, nonconformist parents, in south London, encouraged her to play with trucks as well as dolls.

Around 13, Jessie realised she was attracted to girls and came out to friends as bisexual and then gay. Her favourite bands were All Time Low and Twenty One Pilots, all-male groups whose members were young, cute and fun. She didn’t fancy them; she wanted to be them. These boys had exciting lives, girlfriends, cool haircuts and wore clothes she liked to wear.

Online, Jessie could find no one like her. YouTubers Rose & Rosie were gay but too “girlie”. And she discovered that her favourite bands had a huge Instagram following of girls just like her: young, “butch”, high-achieving and gay. Her fellow fans became online and then real-life friends.

They’d hold meet-ups in Hyde Park. “No one uses the word ‘lesbian’ any more,” she says. “It’s so uncool. It has really negative connotations.” Rather, these short-haired androgynous girls, many of whom had previously self-harmed, started to identify as boys. Some went by male names only online, others just among close friends. A few were “socially transitioned”: out as male to family and school. “It’s weird,” says Jessie. “It’s as if a switch is flicked and suddenly you feel different. I felt I will no longer be that weird girl who dresses like a boy. I will be a boy.”

Jessie had felt uneasy about puberty, but now “it felt 100 times worse. ‘I’m not a girl: why do I have to go through this?’ ” To her 5,000 Instagram followers she became “Jake”. “And if you are on your phone as much as me, that means I was Jake most of the time.” She planned to become Jake permanently when she started sixth-form college, taking testosterone at 16, growing a beard … She followed Alex Bertie’s transition avidly online and was excited to meet him at a YouTube event.

Then she told her parents. They’d been warm and accepting (and unsurprised) when she came out as gay. But they were appalled when Jessie said she was “in the wrong body”. Her mother, Lily, refused to let her attend a gender clinic. Instead, she challenged her thinking: why did having short hair, loving other girls and preferring the menswear department make her a boy? Why must she change her body to match her personality? The rows were epic. “I was forever texting that my parents were awful, that they wouldn’t let me be my authentic self.”

Jessie’s friends had started to bind their breasts: some strapped so tight, they threw up. She tried, but it made her out of breath. Then her mum found her binder and threw it away.

Over a turbulent 18 months, the feeling she was a boy gradually faded. Why? She got a girlfriend and saw her transitioning friends were still deeply troubled. “But the biggest factor was that I moved from music stuff to TV fandom.” She watchedSupergirl, which has two lesbian characters, Maggie and Alex, a secret agent and a cop; andWynonna Earp, with action lesbians Waverly and Nicole who fight demons. “It sounds mad, but they changed my life: finally I saw girls I wanted to be.”

Now Jessie is 17, starting A levels, a happy, sociable, “out” lesbian. “I don’t see why there should be a male box and a female box. Just people who happen to have a penis or a vagina.”

What would have happened if her mother had taken her to a gender clinic? “I would have been Jake now. No question. But I wouldn’t have been happier at all.”

Why do so many teenage girls now believe they are boys? Not just in Britain and the US, but across the western world, the number of female referrals to gender clinics has soared. A decade ago, girls were a fraction of patients at the Gender Identity Clinic in London, the UK’s main child gender service. But in 2011-12 girls surpassed boys, and now comprise 70 per cent of all cases: around 140 new girls every month. Typically they present at puberty, having hitherto never questioned their natal sex, and 90 per cent are gay: clinicians are calling it “rapid onset gender dysphoria”.

Disquiet among professionals has been growing, but until now few have spoken out, terrified of breaching a new orthodoxy that gender transition must always be “affirmed”, even celebrated, since it is the brave expression of the true self. Even if that person is a troubled 14-year-old girl.

James Caspian, a gender psychotherapist for 16 years, has helped many patients transition: he has no doubt that some people cannot live happy lives unless they do. But around seven years ago, his patient base began to change: his clients were younger and predominantly female. Most were lesbians and many had mental co-morbidities such as autism, depression or anxiety; others had suffered sexual abuse. All saw changing gender as a panacea. Yet Caspian believed this to be a fallacy: he discovered a growing US community of lesbian detransitioners (patients who change their mind). But when he tried to research this at Bath Spa University, his MA was blocked by the ethics committee as “politically incorrect”.

Since I interviewed Caspian, others have approached me: teachers noting a sudden clique of transitioning girls, parents whose girls abruptly identified as boys and several senior gender specialists. All wish to remain anonymous for fear they will be accused of transphobia, vilified, even sacked.

A woman I will call Dr K expresses years of frustration dealing with an unacknowledged epidemic of dysphoric teenage girls. “They are all the same, dozens and dozens of them. Short hair, boys’ clothes, probably liked rough and tumble play as small children. Now they like comic books or skateboarding or video gaming. Geeky, gauche, not many friends. They came out as lesbians, but then they went on Reddit and Tumblr and saw these transitioning videos. They decide they are trans. Suddenly they get lots of attention with everyone calling them by a new name, they get to chide anyone who uses the wrong pronoun while everyone tells them they are brave. They might get a special assembly at school.”

What we can’t underestimate, says Dr K, is the sheer homophobia outside middle-class liberal bubbles. “Lesbian” is at worst a grave insult, at best uncool. “The gay hierarchy is this,” she says. “At the top are gay men who can pass as straight, then camp gay men, then pretty, straight-passing lesbians. And right at the very bottom are butch lesbians. Masculine women have no cachet. But if you transition, you zoom right over the gay hierarchy to become a straight man. You can hold your girlfriend’s hand in public. As a butch woman you were unattractive, but lots of them become these cute little guys.”

Then, she says, there are the autistic girls, many undiagnosed. With a typically heightened sensory awareness, they find puberty particularly distressing, while a tendency to rigid categorical thinking means they see society’s pink and blue gender boxes and, if they like “male” clothes or pursuits, believe they must be physically reclassified.

Other girls who have been sexually abused simply wish to escape their vulnerable, desired female bodies. Dr K recalls one patient who came from a very troubled, violent family, where older female relatives were raped. “This girl was very tough, a real survivor. She’d gone through so much. And she said, ‘I can’t be female because girls are fragile and weak, and I don’t feel like that.’

Trans ideology is celebrated as progressive yet, says Dr K, it is deeply conservative, erasing homosexuality and enforcing gender stereotypes. Which is why, says another child clinician, Dr B, it has taken such a hold. “Parents, particularly those without much education, see it as the obvious solution. If your child had diabetes, you’d get him prescribed insulin. If your gay daughter is masculine and feels she’s a boy, you take her to the doctor for hormones. This is the narrative of trans activists groups such as Mermaids and it makes sense to a lot of people. It is far harder to challenge stereotypes, to be ‘gender critical’.”

Jessie’s friends started to bind their breasts; some strapped so tight they threw up

Moreover, a recently approved NHS “memorandum of understanding” states that questioning a patient’s declared gender or examining other underlying mental issues is equivalent to gay conversion therapy. A mother like Jessie’s, who refused to believe her 14-year-old was a boy, risks losing custody of her child. Already schools are pressed to endorse every child’s transition: a teacher in the West Midlands tells me of a very young girl who was allowed to take a male name and pronouns at school without therapeutic support or parental consent. “And you can’t even change a GCSE option without a parent’s signature.”

Trans groups seek an “affirmative” model, as practised in the US, where a doctor’s only role is to agree with a patient’s trans self-diagnosis and to begin treatment. Dr K says most girls now arrive utterly certain, fully briefed by Mermaids or trans websites, often infuriated they must have counselling. Gender clinicians, she says, can only challenge a child’s notions about being in the wrong body “by stealth”. But she risks professional disbarment, because she feels increasingly uneasy about putting girls on a pathway towards an untested treatment regime they may live to regret.

She is scathing, too, about puberty-blocking drugs such as Lupron – prescribed off-label, without any long-term studies upon the developing body and brain – which “pause” development, theoretically to give a child a year for reflection. In practice, almost 100 per cent of children on blockers proceed to cross-gender hormones. (This causes certain sterility: the gametes never mature enough for eggs or sperm to be banked.) “That year on blockers should be when we have deep, intensive regular therapy. We should ask, ‘What is a girl? What is a boy?’ Instead we barely see them, their peers go through puberty and leave them behind, which makes them even more anxious and desperate to transition.”

Both doctors agree with James Caspian, a Jungian, who calls this trend in girls “a collective complex”, a form of mass hysteria fed by online communities. Tumblr and Reddit brim with transition webpages, support groups of girls egging each other on, celebrating when they start “T” (testosterone). As an experiment, I took several “Am I trans?” questionnaires, giving the most ambivalent answers. The result is always “probably” or “yes”.

Peter lived as a woman until his late forties when, after extensive therapy, he became a trans man. “I just knew I had to do this to be happy. I was simply not a woman.” He now runs a trans support group and is aghast at an online culture pushing young lesbians into hasty transition. “I think some of them actually want to hold on to the transitional state. For a girl who was once marginalised, it has prestige. You post videos updating your progress. You get endless attention.” But actually living in your new gender can be a letdown. “They find their old problems have not gone away. And we pick up the pieces.” Peter knows trans boys who consulted private doctors to obtain hormones without prior counselling “and now they’ve had a breakdown and are asking Facebook friends to donate money for therapy they should have had first.”

Growing up in a small Scottish town, Gill was bullied to the point of mental breakdown when she came out as a lesbian teenager. A doctor gave her a diagnosis as trans within ten minutes, but her mother refused treatment. Later she moved to London and encountered the newly emerging “queer” culture, where being trans was far more fashionable and edgy than being a lesbian. She took testosterone for several years, growing permanent facial hair, before desisting. Now 35, she says, “What I needed growing up was older lesbians to reassure me I’m fine as I am. And that’s what I think these girls need now: to meet women like me. But the LGBT movement wouldn’t allow us: they’d see this as transphobic.”

The LGBT community will not countenance that a huge spike in transitioning girls is – like anorexia or self-harm – a social contagion, because this counters a central pillar of trans doctrine that gender is “innate”. The trans lobby is led mainly by older trans-women – born males – who were never teenage girls in the maelstrom of female adolescence. Their view is that girls who detransition weren’t trans to begin with. Although the question, as doctors are told to prescribe drugs unthinkingly, is how can you tell? I email Ruth Hunt, CEO of Stonewall, to ask if she believes many young lesbians are transitioning in response to homophobic bullying. Although a lesbian herself, she refuses to answer; she simply says how “at Stonewall we support every lesbian, gay, bi and trans young person to be themselves”.

But what is the true self of the teenage girl bombarded with pink and blue gender stereotypes on one hand and encouraging trans messages on the other? Especially since one in four girls, according to a recent government survey, has suffered depression. “We must separate gender dysphoria from trans,” says Dr B. In other words, hating your female body is common when society continually tells women they must look a certain way, but this does not mean a girl is in the “wrong body”.

Maybe, I say to Dr K, you are old-fashioned, wrong. Maybe it is fine for a legion of girls to take testosterone, to trade their capacity to orgasm or bear children for a better outward appearance in our highly visual age. Maybe lifelong hormone regimes, moulding the body via surgery, breast binders and stand-to-pee prosthetics are progress? “Yes,” she says. “And I hope I am wrong, for the sake of all these young people. But all my instincts as a clinician say not. I’m thinking of opening a practice in a new field: detransition. I foresee a gap in the market.”

49 thoughts on “Meet Alex Bertie, the transgender poster boy

  1. As a gender non-conforming young woman in the late 1980s I seriously considered whether I would be better off modifying my body to appear male. I hated not being taken seriously and had just realised I would spend the entirety of my life being viewed either as negligible or as prey. I’m thinking now why I decided not to, and I think being heterosexual was the primary reason. I really liked sex, with men, and I couldn’t picture most of them being interested in a woman who looked like a man. Sure, I was forthright rather than deferential and wore masculine clothes and didn’t bother with makeup, so “unfeminine”, but I was obviously a woman. Plenty of men don’t care about the outward signs of submission, so I had lots of lovers and was glad of it.
    (a secondary reason for not transitioning was that I knew it wouldn’t give me the confidence that men have because I hadn’t grown up as a boy)
    I’ve often thought it’s a shame I’m not lesbian or bisexual, especially since I set off gaydar left and right and so many of my role models have been lesbians, particularly older lesbians. But I wonder if, like the girls in this story, I might have made a huge mistake if I dated women. We really need to find ways of showing lesbian girls that they are fine as they are.

    1. I identify with you very much, as another hetero gender non-conforming woman who thought deeply about transitioning into a man.

  2. As a diehard hippie, I boycotted the awful prom with a vengeance. As a diehard punk, my daughter did exactly the same. Neither of us thought we were men for doing that.
    Is there no similar subculture or counterculture now, that will give these girls (or boys) some sense of solidarity in refusing to go along with this crap?
    Apparently, conformist TRANS is considered “the counterculture” now? argh.
    I certainly could not have withstood the pressure of the whole teenage prom-obsession without the confidence that comes from knowing that a whole movement challenging fake bullshit was on my side; ppl who dressed like me, looked like me and had my values. Similarly, the punk rockers of my daughter’s era had their own party, a sort of anti-prom.
    I am shocked that even the goth kids are in lockstep now; they just go to the prom in all-black, that’s all. Is no one (except feminists) challenging the constant heterosexual dress-up okeydoke? Just so depressing. No wonder these girls don’t know what to do. 🙁
    Great piece, thanks.

    1. I didn’t go to my prom either. I couldn’t stomach being around the kids from my high school any more than I had to. There was nothing for me at the prom, so I didn’t go. If I had had a butch lesbian lover at the time, maybe I’d have gone. The thought of twirling around the dance floor in the arms of a lesbian in a tux does sound very appealing. Especially if she doesn’t believe the lie that she’s really a “man.”

    2. Love this! I was far from being a hippie in high school but was a closeted gay boy, and I didn’t go either. Not entirely sure why, even to this day; it wasn’t anything that felt particularly principled, just rebellion. It was perfectly acceptable for kids who didn’t have a heterosexual, opposite-sex date to go “stag” (not sure what it was called for the girls) and show up and hang out. I just didn’t want to. My mother was furious and probably even really emotionally sad about it. I felt sort of bad because I generally wanted to be nice and please her, but I stuck to it. It was my one significant act of rebellion and nonconformity in 13 years of K-12 school and I’ve never regretted it. Sorry this is longish and OT, but this comment just struck such a chord!

    1. Increasing policing of gender roles is behind the surge, as well as the homophobia that always existed. Neoliberal ideology coming from the academy and the capitalist ruling class have caused the rise in choose-your-own-identity and personal empowerment narratives. Young people are seeking attention, but young people have always sought attention, and this isn’t the sole cause.

      1. The mantra of liberal parents — “You can be whatever you want to be!” — does not help. I think a lot of young people literally believe they can choose their sex and other immutable characteristics.

    2. It’s porn. No girl wants to be a woman if it means being what women are in pornography. It is so extreme and ubiquitous now that girls are desperate for a way out. Lesbians are fetishized in pornography.

    3. Because everywhere, everywhere, they look they see that, being ‘male’ equals good and being ‘female’ equals bad, it’s not just the machines. ‘Good’ being always good enough, and ‘bad’ being never good enough.
      It’s relationships, language, politics, work, movies, TV shows, clothes, career opportunities. It’s every time someone uses the word, ‘guys’ as a collective noun, It’s everywhere they walk, ride transit, go to the beach. Its song lyrics. It’s every aspect of their waking and sleeping lives.
      The ‘machine’ has only heightened the visibility of what was always there.

  3. This line indicates something horrifying, sad, and so unjust:
    “Suddenly,” he says, “my teachers looked out for me in class.”

    1. That stuck out for me too. Previously they felt under threat from homophobic bullies. Post deciding they were trans suddenly they had admiration and protection.
      As an aside I’d like to thank this blog for highlighting something that I’d probably always sort of known and sort of noticed but never spent too much time thinking about probably because I’m about as straight as they come; that lesbians, particularly butch ones are treated like the lowest on the totem. Hearing young gay women say that being a lesbian is “uncool” is so sad. It’s extremely hard to resist internalising societal hatreds but to cop a double dose based on your sex AND sexual preference would be even harder.

  4. I’m saddened by Alex Bertie’s story. Why don’t teenage girls accept who they are without transitioning? I went to prom alone, but I just tried to enjoy the night. Kids need to be taught to be tougher and not give in to peer pressure or bullying. Another lesbian life wasted.

      1. Wait until Alex is older and unable to pass. Think also of the years of blockers, hormones and surgeries she will have to face to keep up the facade that she is like other males. Because she isn’t.

  5. No prom for me. I wonder when massive numbers of liberal women out there are actually going to support butch lesbians, if that happened, maybe there would be less young women going to the body destroying trans solution.

    1. So true. Historically, butches have had a hard time. Even in our LGBT community, going back to the seventies and eighties they were accused by some other lesbians, of wanting to be men or of aping heterosexuality, as if they were letting us all down. In the straight world, ‘butch’ has never been accepted as feminine. And, let’s face it, it’s not just a lesbian thing. There are a lot of butch-looking, straight women, (as some contributors have described themselves above) We just don’t talk about it enough.
      Now butch lesbians, who have lived their whole adult lives without conforming to the stereotype of femininity are being told by trans activists that they are really trans men, if they argue the point, they are transphobic
      No-one, it seems, wants to allow butch women to be women.
      Yet, that particular identity has the power to revolutionise what it means to be female.

  6. Janice Turner is brilliant.
    FTM “transitioning” is a crime against the female sex just like female genital mutilation, foot binding, and every other cultural form of mutilation of female bodies. The mutilation of female anatomy in one form or another is nothing new. It has been going on for thousands of years. FTM “transitioning” takes it to the extreme because not only are females being mutilated, female identity itself is being erased. In essence, it’s the ultimate form of female erasure.
    FTM “transitioning” should be banned just like female genital mutilation is outlawed.
    No female in our society escapes the cultural messages that say that females are inferior, and as girls start puberty they are saturated with messages from the media that say they must be hyper-feminized Barbie dolls.
    And, if a girl is lesbian, she knows she will be marginalized. The “transitioning” of girls is lesbian eugenics and a crime against the female sex.
    What we are witnessing is a crime against the female sex, and the sickest part of it all is that it’s passed off as “progressive”. FTM “transitioning” cannot be separated from culture. We do not live in a world where males and females are equal, and we do not live in a society that values lesbians. There is no way to separate culture from FTM “transitioning”. How much is “gender dysphoria”, and how much is cultural messages that say girls are inferior, and lesbians are on the bottom of the social hierarchy. The term “gender dysphoria” is such an idiotic term anyway. Every female in our culture has “gender dysphoria” to some degree. It intensifies as girls become teenagers. No teenage girl feels totally comfortable with her body.
    At puberty, girls develop “rapid onset dysphoria”. This is utter nonsense. “Rapid onset dysphoria” is a bullshit term. This is about the time that girls realize that being female isn’t easy, and being a lesbian means marginalization. It’s purely cultural. These girls look around and notice that it’s shitty being female, and they are bombarded with a zillion and one trans blogs, websites, etc.
    “Why do so many teenage girls now believe they are boys? Not just in Britain and the US, but across the western world, the number of female referrals to gender clinics has soared. A decade ago, girls were a fraction of patients at the Gender Identity Clinic in London, the UK’s main child gender service. But in 2011-12 girls surpassed boys, and now comprise 70 per cent of all cases: around 140 new girls every month. Typically they present at puberty, having hitherto never questioned their natal sex, and 90 per cent are gay: clinicians are calling it “rapid onset gender dysphoria”.
    The way that this article describes the “gay hierarchy” and cultural hierarchies is spot on.
    “What we can’t underestimate, says Dr K, is the sheer homophobia outside middle-class liberal bubbles. “Lesbian” is at worst a grave insult, at best uncool. “The gay hierarchy is this,” she says. “At the top are gay men who can pass as straight, then camp gay men, then pretty, straight-passing lesbians. And right at the very bottom are butch lesbians. Masculine women have no cachet. But if you transition, you zoom right over the gay hierarchy to become a straight man. You can hold your girlfriend’s hand in public. As a butch woman you were unattractive, but lots of them become these cute little guys.”
    In Iran, lesbians are “transitioned” too because being homosexual is not an option. It’s a historical fact that “transitioning” is a form of gay and lesbian eugenics in countries like Iran. In the US, lesbian eugenics hides behind the pretty pink and blue trans flags, and in words such as “rapid onset dysphoria”.
    We know that disabled women are being “transitioned”. Women with autism, bipolar disorder, and Down Syndrome have been transitioned.

    Social work professor speaks out on behalf of her FtM autistic daughter


    Go to youtube and type in “autistic and FTM”.
    https://gendertrender.wordpress.com/2015/08/21/aydin-olson-kennedy-msw-urges-gender-surgery-for-down-syndrome-child-in-intensive-care-unit/
    “Then, she says, there are the autistic girls, many undiagnosed. With a typically heightened sensory awareness, they find puberty particularly distressing, while a tendency to rigid categorical thinking means they see society’s pink and blue gender boxes and, if they like “male” clothes or pursuits, believe they must be physically reclassified.”
    Some girls decide they are boys because being a girl comes with too much pain. Girls who can’t deal with their sexual abuse find it easier to be “boys”.
    “Other girls who have been sexually abused simply wish to escape their vulnerable, desired female bodies. Dr K recalls one patient who came from a very troubled, violent family, where older female relatives were raped. “This girl was very tough, a real survivor. She’d gone through so much. And she said, ‘I can’t be female because girls are fragile and weak, and I don’t feel like that.”
    FTM “transitioning” is far worse than female genital mutilation. Both involve the mutilation of female bodies, but FTM “transitioning” erases female identity itself. “Top surgery” is nothing more than elective mastectomies with the surgical trimming down of areolas and nipples. Nipples can literally fall off. “Bottom surgery” on a female is truly mutilation. Skin grafts from the arm are sewn onto the female pubic area. Botched “bottom surgery” on a female is ghastly.

    Renowned San Francisco phalloplasty surgeon hit with multiple lawsuits


    Again, FTM transitioning should be outlawed just like female genital mutilation is banned in most countries. It’s a crime against the female sex, and it’s only going to get worse with time. It’s also a form of lesbian eugenics.

    1. Excellent Times article. You are the best for publishing it here. Why is British media finally allowing some of the truth to come out about the trans patriarchal cult while in the U.S there is such fear, that all media just repeat the cult’s mantras or stay silent on the great harm being done to our youth by the trans juggernaut?
      And this is an excellent comment. Let’s not forget that our “culture,” all cultures, really, is the PATRIARCHY. Men, entitled and arrogant, are driving the trans madness. Men invented the concept of gender, sex role stereotypes, and they are enforcing it big time with trans insanity. What angers me most about it all, and this Times article covers a lot that makes us all sick and sad and angry, is that men are APPROPRIATING femaleness, yet again defining what a woman is. They haven’t got a fucking clue what being a woman is. And the left (or the right) will not condemn this appropriation, though no other is allowed. And ultimately, of course, men can disappear women, erase us, because women’s voices are not heard. We are only listened to if we band together in great numbers. And that we must do to confront the threat to all females/lesbians the trans cult poses.

      1. We have several trans billionaires here in the USA, and I think they call the shots… since that’s what billionaires do. I don’t think the UK has as many?
        The USA breeds billionaires as a matter of course. Its one of our major cash crops.
        Further, here in the USA, lots of trans women work in STEM; they are basically running Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Ask Gallus about it; argue with them and they will lock you out of your own social media accounts. They play very dirty; baiting women into arguing and then getting them banned, is their strategy. I was banned on Twitter for 48 hrs simply for making a smart-ass comment to one that was arguing with me, i.e. “if you are trans, why are you obviously trying to convince me of your manhood with this behavior?” And BOOM that was it… you can harass women with horrible sexist language and endless dick pics on Twitter, but don’t ever imply one of them was ever a man.
        See #facebookdykeban which was an organized take-down of hundreds of lesbians on facebook. If Greta Christina and a few other high-profile activists had not complained? We might not have heard about it at all.
        USA seems paralyzed with fear over this subject.. and now the Democratic party (in total fucked-up disarray) actually has some trans politicians who WON RACES this past week, and this will consolidate transgender power in the Democratic party. In other words, there doesn’t seem to be any place for gender-critical people to regroup, discuss and strategize; the leftists and liberals are all onboard with the trans (and don’t forget the presence of the omniscient billionaires; lots of these activists have their hands out too; I am sure they contributed privately and heavily to these election campaigns) … and the Republicans are devoutly anti-woman.
        It will be up to us on a one-to-one level. I have started talking to political women privately and personally and getting their honest opinions; and you can probably figure out what lots of the these opinions are. We will have to organize covertly, as we did during the Reagan era.
        But you are absolutely right–nobody is complaining in the USA like they are in the UK… and I think these are some of the reasons.

    2. Let’s be real here. FTM transitioning is how people can be their authentic selves. I hate this article. It’s showing the transgender community that I’ve found safety in as a dump.They’ve shown Alex Bertie, the person who’s given me hope that I can be a true man one day, as a poster boy. The top and bottom surgeries are making people more comfortable in their own bodies. Starting testosterone can change, or even save someone’s life. Would you say the same thing you have said if you were a transman? Or would you rather a transgender human just go and commit suicide? Answer me truthfully.
      Signed,
      Peiton Alexander Clark
      Proud transman

      1. Get help for your mental health issues. The suicide trope is so very juvenile and overdone! What, are you 14? Why not just hold your breath until your bratty face turns blue? You can’t be something you are not. Screwing around with your body will never help when your brain has the problem. We don’t endorse liposuction for anorexics, though their disorder may lead them to see themselves as “fat.” Gender identity disorders are analogous. Everyone will be able to see that you’re just a woman or girl with a patchy beard, too wide hips, and a plethora of surgical scars. They won’t be fooled. Additionally, you will never be able to perform like a man in bed. No one will ever mistake your enlarged clitoris, or arm or thigh skin stuffed with tissue, for a real, actual, functioning penis. And they will forever ask, “What happened to your arm?!” Google Dr Curtis Crane of San Francisco. Photos of fake dicks he constructed for women like you are available online. The results are tragic and unrealistic. Neither straight women, nor gay men, nor lesbians, will want you. You will be projecting your self-hatred to the world, and in the end, you will be far poorer, and not one bit happier. I may be happier as a dolphin, or even as a lawfin, but the simple truth is that not everything in life is a choice. Embrace it! Have the wisdom to accept those things you can not change. Good luck, young lady!

  7. I just can’t understand how gender, a completely made up patriarchal concept, is innate.
    “Feminine” is innate to women, and when a dude feels feminine, this is how he knows he is a woman.
    And “feminine” is wholly defined by males. Feminine is defined as dainty, quiet, cosmetics, a person that just loves to provide free reproductive and domestic labor. To a male.
    Dudes feel all if these things innately, and this is how they know they are women.
    But I don’t feel like this. I don’t know any woman that actually feels like any of that, lesbian or straight.
    This is where I lose hope. Because it is obviously upholding gender roles that keep us in the lower, servant class. And no matter how many times we point this out, it does not matter that it is an obvious, observable fact.
    The only things that matter are the wants and feelings of males. And they have the societal power to take whatever they want.
    I am tired of being an object for male use. But now I don’t even qualify as an object. I am an “essence”. An “inner feeling”.
    We are all ghosts. We aren’t even allowed to have a physical existence anymore.

  8. I can’t wait for this fad to die down. I can’t believe how many people have bought it thoughtlessly. Virtue signalers are the worst type of shallow hypocrite.

  9. () He said, ‘It’s your fault for giving birth to a girl.’ << Women can't control what biological sex their child is. Everything is womens' fault now. Like the women being jailed for having abortions or miscarriages.
    () “No one uses the word ‘lesbian’ any more,” It’s so uncool. It has really negative connotations. I felt I will no longer be that weird girl who dresses like a boy. I will be a boy.” << So lesbians are considered useless by straight society unless its for male porn fantasy, threesomes, or distraction for straight women until they go back to males.
    () Lesbians are useless to gay males unless they need womens' blood for the aids/hiv or to surrogate and birth their designer exotic babies.
    () Lesbians are useless to "trans" people unless they're trying to date/sex us or trying to have womens' uterus transplant into them.
    Lesbians seem useless to everyone but they won't leave us alone to our events/groups which they keep taking over. So much homophobia from these kids and young adults. Everyone's identity seems to be respected except lesbians. They stole and changed the actual definition female and lesbian. I hope these "trans people" are not dating/sexing lesbians. So done with these people and their supporters. If lesbians are so useless and outdated than "trans" should be dating each other anyway. If I seem wrong in my assumptions feel free to make suggestions.

  10. “””””I’m thinking of opening a practice in a new field: detransition. I foresee a gap in the market.””””
    Sadly, I foresee detransition clinics being a booming business in a few years when all these poor kids realize that they permanently ruined their bodies and killed their fertility for the sake of a fad.
    I also foresee a slew of lawsuits in 10-20 years when all these children who began transitioning when they were practically babies (like Jazz Jennings) realize how badly their parents and doctors screwed them over by allowing them to make a life-altering decisions when they were too young to understand the consequences.

    1. I’ve never watched the actual Jazz show on TV (it’s one of those many things that I figure other people watch so I don’t have to), but I saw a clip of the promo for the upcoming season, and there was a brief scene in there of where the Dr. was telling the family that the hormones had stunted the development of his genitals such that there wasn’t going to be enough penis tissue to work with to construct his “vagina.” Wonder how that is working out?

      1. That clip made me tremendously sad because it proves that Jazz is screwed no matter what. Since his genitals were stunted with drugs and never allowed to develop; he can never live fully as a man or a “woman”. He will forever be a eunuch who can never fully experience his sexuality or have biological children.
        Not only is that awful in and of itself; but it also dramatically limits his prospects for romantic partners (something that Jazz could not have accounted for when he began transitioning at the age of SIX)
        That poor child also has the pressure of being a “trans icon” and “LGBT rights activist”. So even if he did change his mind and want to go back to living as a boy; he’d likely be too afraid of losing all his celebrity friends and/or incurring the anger of the trans cult when he announces that allowing a six year old to choose gender transition was a terrible idea.
        IMO, in a just world, Jazz’s parents and doctors would be jailed for child abuse.

  11. “”””“This girl was very tough, a real survivor. She’d gone through so much. And she said, ‘I can’t be female because girls are fragile and weak, and I don’t feel like that.’””””””””
    This part almost made me cry.
    My family was homeless for a while when I was about 11-years-old. And for a long time, I went out of my way to pass as a boy at all times because I was terrified of being perceived as a weak little girl. And I also knew from watching TV that adolescent girls were more likely to be kidnapped, raped, and murdered than little boys. It took me a long time to realize that rejecting/hating my womanhood for the sake of safety was just letting the bad guys win.
    “”””The little girl who was once Alex Bertie liked action figures, toy cars and Lego. Above all she loved video games: her favourite times were sitting beside her father, Paul, a postman, while he played Nintendo and Dreamcast.””””
    This part made me angry. I loved all those things when I was little. It didn’t make me a boy. And neither my classmates nor my parents thought that playing with action figures, legos, and video games were “boy activities”. EVERY CHILD played with that stuff!
    That paragraph shows just how insidious the trans dogma is. They tell impressionable CHILDREN that there is something wrong with them if they don’t rigidly conform to ridiculous gender stereotypes regarding meaningless things like toy preference. So any girl who doesn’t worship the Disney Princesses and any boy who doesn’t love wrestling and toy cars are made to feel like a freaks who inhabit the wrong body. It makes me sick

  12. Thanks for posting this in it’s entirety Gallus. I do hate the Times pay-wall policy. Anyway, I hope that Theresa May and Maria Miller have read it and choked on their cornflakes.
    This article by Janice Turner is spot on. Whoever Dr K and Dr B are I want to shake them by the hand………. “Trans ideology is celebrated as progressive yet, says Dr K, it is deeply conservative, erasing homosexuality and enforcing gender stereotypes. Which is why, says another child clinician, Dr B, it has taken such a hold. “Parents, particularly those without much education, see it as the obvious solution. If your child had diabetes, you’d get him prescribed insulin. If your gay daughter is masculine and feels she’s a boy, you take her to the doctor for hormones. This is the narrative of trans activists groups such as Mermaids and it makes sense to a lot of people. It is far harder to challenge stereotypes, to be ‘gender critical’.”
    It’s the conclusion that I came to a long time ago. People crave the easy option; the package-tour instead of going to all the hassle of researching and finding out for themselves. Sugar-coat it , paint a rainbow on it, call it Mermaids (how-cute). That’s what people want. It makes me so mad. Pink boxes/blue-boxes. Think outside the box people. People don’t celebrate diversity, they celebrate the idea of diversity.
    Hell, I was, by today’s definitions, gender non-conforming; happiest outside running with the wind and the rain, nature. I had a crush on my best friend. Nothing pretty, no make-up. Never understood what all that was for. My ex used to taunt me, buy me hand bags and girlie stuff and say to my friend that he was teaching me to be feminine!
    Well, he’s the one with the handbags and skirts now…..ain’t he a woman?
    Well, yes if the ludicrous amendments to the GRA go through. You are whatever you decide to be. It doesn’t matter if you produce sperm or ovum. Gender Identity is supreme.
    I’m so glad that James Caspian is mentioned in the article. He and Miranda Yardley, Stephanie Davies-Araii and Judith Green recently were invited to speak at the House of Commons by MP David Davies at a meeting, attended by the press and other MPs, called Transgender Law Concerns. Both Stephanie and Miranda have excellent reports on their blogs. Here is a link to the transcript of all 4 talks…….www.david-davies.org.uk/sites/www.david-davies.org.uk/files/2017-11/Transgender%20Law%20Concerns.pdf
    The bullies won’t win. I hope to see common-sense return. James Caspian will have his work cut out; so awful he can’t get funding now. It will be the law-suits that push it in the end though.

    1. “Parents, particularly those without much education, see it as the obvious solution.”
      The trans child trend is being driven by white, well-educated, professional mothers who align politically to the left.

      1. The trans child trend is being driven by white, well-educated, professional mothers who align politically to the left.

        Well brainwashed is more like it.

      2. Kesher, I think this is where we see a US/UK cultural divide. In the UK there is a different dynamic. If you search the history and background of Susie Green of Mermaids fame, for example, you will what Dr B is referring to.

      3. They aren’t well educated if they think one can actually change sex. As a scientist, I have tried to educate these people, but most of them are too dumb to know what they don’t know. Chemistry, biology and physics, at a minimum, should be required courses for high school and college students. People lacking critical thinking skills should never be called educated. I had a goldfish more educated than these trans loons. The scientist method should be taught at every level of education. So many people think that scientific facts “should” align with their values and beliefs. The word “belief” doesn’t belong in discussions about science.

      4. Driven by? Don’t you mean enforced by? Wealthy dudes like priztker and pharmaceutical execs are driving it, with a lazy media failing to investigate. educated lib moms are doing what all the experts tell them to.

    1. I’m trying to remember how we used to deal with these sorts of feelings in the ’90s, when I was a teen. Music was a massive escape and comfort, and a venue for finding like-minded others.We went to see bands, we tried to form bands, we spent hours shopping for records and listening to new songs on the radio. then discussing them endlessly. Some of us wrote fanzines. In about 1996-97, what we might have called gender-bending was fashionable. The boys experimented with makeup, the girls played around with both masculinity and hyper-femininity. There were female role models at the time who were not conventionally feminine, yet were still achingly cool and desirable in many ways – remember Justine Frischmann from Elastica?
      We all experimented with our sexuality. Some of us were sad and a bit troubled, but we all had a great time, at least some of the time. We had each other, at least some of the time, and we had our heroes.
      Do teens now even do this?

  13. This made me almost cry. I hated my body and couldn’t have a relationship with a man until I was in my 20s because of all the sexual harassment and borderline assault. I felt my body had betrayed me – similar as to how when I hit puberty in 5th grade I wrote “I want to be a boy” on the bathroom wall at home because I did not fit into the feminine gender role. I still don’t, really, but being straight is probably what led me to not be as extreme as Alex. But it is all on the same spectrum, this self-hatred of the female body, and it is different from the self-hatred male to trans have of their body. These medical professionals and social media sites aren’t just doing a disservice to these girls but to society as a whole by ignoring the pervasive sexism girls face. Also, where is the trans brigade in defending girls being bullied for being masculine lesbians, for all they talk about the tragedy of trans kids being bullied? Oh, right, they are encouraging the girls to transition to boys because to acknowledge young lesbians being bullied for actually breaking gender roles would undermine their whole positive trans narrative.

    1. And there is no profit center is just accepting young butch lesbian girls, and supporting them. You don’t make money on people who are happy with their bodies, or supported in not having to obey male rules—lesbian disobey male rules, and butch lesbians REALLY disobey all the rules.

  14. For not the first time, I felt physically sick after reading a post here, and I don’t think it was because of skipping breakfast. I’m glad to have read it, though, and glad GallusMag you are here posting these things.
    “Suddenly,” he says, “my teachers looked out for me in class.”
    As with others above, this line jumped out at me, and I think it was the most heartbreaking line in the whole heartbreaking piece. A lesbian getting gang-bullied? Never mind, nothing to see here, move along, boys will be boys. Only “look out for” her once she is trans.
    No one usually responds to any of my “political” shares on Facebook, but I went ahead and shared it with some comments about how important it is. I have 13 grand-nieces (soon to be 14!) and some are grown and it’s not an issue but this could happen to any of them, and the boys need to read this too and everybody needs to know about this.

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