The Fractured Self

by Victoria Schneider M.D
Winter 2024

The dissection of gender away from biological sex causes a fracture in one’s self—one’s sense of who one is, how one relates to the world, how one fits in relationships. The desire to become a different sex—which is at the root of many who pursue the transgender life—leads one down a road of false hope to a life that is tragically torn by the biologic reality that no matter what you put into your body or remove from your body you are still left with XX or XY chromosomes.

Current medical practice in the US enables the idea that you can manipulate the body to create a new appearance and a new self. In essence medicine has adopted a “dis-integrative” approach to health care, literally the opposite of the recent wholistic embrace of integrative medicine. By encouraging and providing tools for people to change their appearance, the medical establishment is creating a population of people who are unable to reproduce and who are dependent on the health care system for life. A lifetime of medication, of new health problems which are a result of these medications, often multiple surgeries, and complications of those surgeries.

The shiny coin being held out to these depressed, anxious, seeking souls is that this medical destruction of their sex organs will make them feel better, less suicidal, more whole. The tragedy is that it achieves just the opposite. Our neighbors in Europe have found definitively that this fracturing of self does not relieve one’s internal suffering, and not surprisingly increases the long-term risk of suicide. In the Netherlands, the “Dutch studies” have been referenced by organizations like the American Academy of Pediatrics and the WPATH (World Professional Association of Transgender Health) as showing how gender affirming care lowers the risk of suicide. But in fact, a review of 45 years of transgender care in the Netherlands concluded that suicide risk remains higher than the general population. Transgender care is not a fix for the depression and suicide that these individuals face.

Sweden, after fifty years of providing transgender treatments, has shut its clinics, and is reevaluating its approach, having found that gender affirming care did not reduce the risk of suicide or depression.

As if this isn’t tragic enough, such harm is being perpetrated on children too young to understand abstract ideas about gender and too young to provide informed consent for the permanent destruction of their sex organs. Medicine has gone rogue and is perpetrating harm on an entire population of children.

The truth is that the healing of the whole person—sex and gender, body and soul—is needed to assuage the wounds of past adverse experiences which have led our children to the precipice of despair. These children need trauma-informed care. They should not be treated as guinea pigs to the abuses of the medical establishment.

troubled girl

About The Author

Victoria Schneider M.D
Victoria Schneider M.D. has been a board-certified general pediatrician for thirty-seven years and served for over a decade as the medical expert in child abuse and neglect for the state of Hawaii. After earning an undergraduate degree from Princeton University, she received her MD from Johns Hopkins Medical School and completed her pediatric residency at the University of California San Francisco. She is a member of the American College of Pediatricians and the Catholic Medical Association. Dr Schneider serves as a resource pediatrician at Bella Primary Care in San Francisco, which provides life affirming care from conception through natural death.
troubled girl

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