The sharp growth in claims of gender dysphoria, particularly by young women who feel they should be male, is a confronting trend that requires serious attention. The Weekend Australian has been particularly concerned about claims critical of the speed with which young people have been encouraged to undergo irreversible treatment, sometimes without the consent of parents.

Even discussing the issue has raised the ire of some practitioners, resulting in lengthy investigations into the report in The Australian. The finding of the Australian Press Council in September last year that the report was in the public interest, despite partly upholding a complaint by Dr Michelle Telfer, who runs the gender clinic at the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne, has been validated by the closure of the Tavistock Gender Clinic in the UK. This is particularly so given the reliance that specialists working in this area here have put on the controversial methods and approaches used at Tavistock. Australian clinics use the same hormonal treatments, including puberty blockers.

The British clinic is being shut down after it was criticized in an independent review that highlighted very poor evidence to support hormonal treatment. Doctors reported concerns that some patients were referred to a gender transitioning pathway too quickly. Gender identity services at Tavistock will be brought to a close and transferred to two services led by specialist children’s hospitals in London and the North West.

male and female chromosones

Once very rare, the diagnosis of gender dysphoria has taken off among teenagers in affluent countries, including Australia.

A “gender-affirming” world view pioneered in Australia confronts parents with a stark and false choice: streamlined access to “lifesaving treatment”, or a child left to suffer the suicidal ­distress of gender identity at odds with the body’s biology.

Persuaded by gender clinicians and human rights lawyers, the Family Court had made it easier over the past ­several years for children and adolescents to get ­puberty-blocker drugs, cross-sex hormones, and surgery such as mastectomy without the obstacle of a court application, as long as parents did not disagree. With the closure of Tavistock, the question must be asked: If it is unsafe in the UK, can the same approach be considered safe in Australia? There is an urgent need to revisit the findings of a flawed inquiry initiated by former federal health minister Greg Hunt that preserved the status quo. Parents and children in need deserve to know the treatments they are being offered do not fall outside mainstream mental health guidelines or have been motivated by hardcore transgender ideology. The closure of Tavistock should open the way for a proper, open investigation.

Sadly, none of the work done has considered God and His commandments and His purposes for men and women. Even more so, they need to consider that our Heavenly Father sent His Son to provide mankind with a way back into a righteous relationship with Him. When we repent of our rebellion against God and accept Jesus our Lord and Saviour our Heavenly Father sends the Holy Spirit to indwell our spirit and be our counsellor, teacher, and comforter. We then have all the power we need to overcome so-called gender dysphoria.

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