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Indian parents ‘using sex reassignment surgery for more sons’

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  1. scattermoon 28 Jun 2011, 1:22pm

    A quote in the Metro suggests “A parent whose child had genitoplasty aged two said: ‘I think he would not be confused over his gender when he grows up and can live a normal life as he would not have any memories of the surgery.’”

    Because that worked so well for David Reimer…

    All this is going to do is create a great deal of anguish in these girls. Their lives are being ruined before they have even got a chance to live most of them. And for what? Quite frankly, this is a major abuse of human rights and needs to be dealt with accordingly.

  2. Unfortunately situations like this will probably be used to prevent trans children/youth to obtain the treatment they actually need and want.

    1. Given the newspaper originating this, and that prejudiced pressure (claiming these were gay boys who needed time to realise their true sexuality) by gay activists, rumoured to have been assisted by WPATH and ILGA, has recently destroyed access to SRS in Thailand for those under 18 (previously several western young people were very grateful indeed to have been able to have had SRS there at 16), and given that Indian state hospitals are stepping in to do SRS for Hijra people in India, who have previously been doing their own traditional reassignment procedure, dating back hundreds of years, at any age from 10 (verified by follow up reports in Indian medical journals), you may be right.

      1. Andrea B. 2 Jul 2011, 8:35am

        WPATH, GIRES, ILGA and local Thai LGB groups lobbyed to have have sex reasignemnt surgery stopped completely in Thailand. They suceeded in getting SRS stoppped for transsexual people under 18. That has done massive damage to young transsexual people, as that actions has removed access to high quality sex reasignment surgery.

        At the same time WPATH, GIRES, ILGA and local Thai LGB groups lobbyed to ensure that intersex children were operated on at birth. Quite often Thai surgeons left the children alone for a few year or so and on occassion completely. Now they are all operated on at birth.

        This is actually a repeat of the PR process that was used to stop the Thai clinics operating on young TS people and to impose the horrific bigotted restriction of having to see a psychiatrist before surgery.

        There is serious LGB lobbying to have access to SRS restricted or stopped in India, as there has been in Thailand.

        The fact that Pink News allows an article which they know to be a complete and utter fabrication to stand, shows you were Pink News stands on the issue. Action does speak louder than words.

        1. Staircase2 3 Jul 2011, 2:25am

          I don’t see how having a requirement that people have counsel with a psychiatrist before an operation as life changing as this could be considered ‘bigoted’…
          Unless I’m misunderstanding something in your article…..

          1. Andrea B. 3 Jul 2011, 8:27am

            Forcing a transsexual person to see a psychiatrist for merely existing is blatant bigotry.

  3. …And this is what happens when greater value is placed on cultural tradition than the lives of individuals. Monstrous.

    1. Even from the point of view of cultural traditions the shortsightedness is beyond belief – what’s going to happen when these poor people are unable to father a child in later life?

      1. Commander Thor 30 Jun 2011, 8:10am

        Natural selection acting on culture?

  4. HelenWilson 28 Jun 2011, 2:39pm

    Nobody should undergo sex reassignment unless they have the fundamental need within themselves to do so.

    We are just as uncivilised, something like 1 in 2,000 children born are intersexed that’s about 360 a children a year. The medical profession deem it necessary for them to assign the child a sex. They don’t play the long game and wait and ask the child what they feel themselves to be, they decide often by what is the easiest surgical fix for the NHS.

  5. Alexander Hauser 28 Jun 2011, 2:51pm

    I’m transsexual myself and I find this disgusting. You can’t change someone’s gender identity or neurological sex – see David Reimer. Experiments into changing gender identity have almost all failed, rendering the test subjects miserable and often suicidal.

  6. martyn notman 28 Jun 2011, 3:05pm

    This is not just bizarre but also seemingly pointless? Do these people understand that just by giving someone a penis you dont make them a male? Cruelty of the worst sort.

  7. This is creepy on every imaginable level. The $2000 they pay for this disgusting surgery now would surely not outweigh the need for a dowry 15 or more years down the line? Outrageous.

  8. Where there is the potiental for light, some mindless, ignorant, brain dead twit will find a way to cover it with darkness.

    Horribly sad for these girls.

  9. @HelenWilson. First off, i’ll agree all the way with those who condemn this practice as barbaric.

    Second, though: this is a genuine ask. To hat extent is this current practice in the UK, as opposed to US today?

    I have covered this issue in the past and highlighted some appalling US-side practices around “normalising” children.

    However, for at least the last decade, the UK model has been to leave well alone unless intervention is needed for medical reasons – and so whilst we may have done this in the past, i don’t believe we still do.

    If someone has evidence to the contrary, please drop me a line.

    1. It would be against joint European and US pediatric guidelines. If it happens it would be rare and hidden. That said, there was a documentary only a couple of years ago about a toddler (older than in this story) from The Phillipines being operated in the US where the parents were given a choice of which direction the child should be assigned, the surgeons were agreeing that assignment was needed, on the same old grounds that ambiguous genitalia would make life more difficult, rather than there being any immediate clinical problems), and the choice of going male was clearly mostly because having a son was preferable, and the father wanted a son. It was not at all clear what the child wanted (other than not to suffer surgery, after previous surgeries), nor what the child’s particular genetic condition would predicts about their gender identity. I found it troubling that was happening under the guidelines which had by then already been adopted.

    2. Andrea B. 2 Jul 2011, 8:40am

      Wrong. The UK model is to operate ASAP.

      Great Ormond Street which is the primary center nfor intersex new borns, still re-assigns at birth.

      The only enlightened clinic in the UK for intersex people is UCL, which deals mostly with adults.

      Where do you get your misinformation? It is almost like you are quoting GIRES at times.

  10. This is an offensive degrading abuse of people. In years to come there will be people who come out and repeat the stories of abuse which been repeated in history again and again :(.

  11. Staircase2 28 Jun 2011, 4:34pm

    Of course it would be far easier to create a cultural shift which values girls and boys equally simply by legally requiring that BOTH the bride AND the groom’s family supply the ‘dowry’ and jointly pay for the wedding.

    1. With such a ridiculous disparity of males and females, the cultural shift will swing into reverse – boys will have to pay dowries to be able to marry girls. Just as well homosexuality is now legal in India.

    2. Dowries are already illegal in India, as is the process of selective abortions to prevent the birth of daughters. Unfortunately the country has a tradition of police deciding for themselves which laws to enforce, which makes reform via parliament and the courts all rather impossible, and suggestions for further changes pointless until enforcement is sorted out.

  12. Jen Marcus 28 Jun 2011, 5:36pm

    These people are Incredibly insanely ignorant, greedy, short sighted and barbaric.They have no business having children,period! Helen Wilson is right.Because of their serious permanent life altering implications, sex reassignment surgeries are only ethically,morally and medically appropriate for individuals who know at their very core after much credible professional counseling ,assistance and pre-screening that their gender identity is opposite their natal anatomical sex and that they would be much happier being and living as person of the opposite sex.

  13. Paddyswurds 28 Jun 2011, 7:10pm

    Some questions need to be asked about the doctors who carry out this barbarity on healthy children. How are they able to hold on to their licence to practice.
    By the way, what do these people think will happen come puberty when these “boys”start growing breasts instead of beards?.

    1. Personally I doubt the Indian story has correctly reported this, in that the children were, I would imagine, intersex. In which case the presence and viability of any existing gonadal structures, and all signs of likely hormonal balances would have been assessed, and perhaps found something like ambiguous before the parents were given a choice. At which point the choice might have been biased, as reported.
      The doctors would endeavour to ensure, barring unforeseen factors, that changes at puberty matched the genitalia they constructed.
      Indian medicine is generally rather advanced, if somewhat unregulated at times, so lets not be racist about this, please.

  14. It is clear the journalist has bever been to india and that the journalist has no comprehension of sex reasignment surgery on adults or children.

    There is no way to get a fully functioning penis with the technology level at present.

    Also assuming the child was sucessfully sex reasigned, the child would be 100% sterile.

    I would question the accuracy of this report.

    1. Agreed, this seems in the sensationalist column…

      1. Andrea B. 2 Jul 2011, 8:41am

        It has come out in India that the article is completely fabricated.

  15. Another part of the problem of valuing girls less than boys (and India is not the only place where that happens, of course). It needs a cultural change to gradually reduce this old-fashioned thinking so that a baby can be valued whatever its gender.
    I don’t know if the babies mentioned in this report are truly intersex, but I do know that female babies are killed simply because they’re the ‘wrong’ gender. That disgusts me. As does this report if it’s correct.

  16. Shame on them 29 Jun 2011, 1:28am

    … and we in the west think circumcision is bad. I think if I was a little Indian girl I’d rather they left me out in the sun to die than to go through puberty and life like that.

  17. There are several issues I have with this article.

    The entire article seems sourced from the Hindustan times, which I’ve never heard of and cannot place it in accuracy.

    Now this seems so bizarre that you wonder if its true, BUT its just so ridiculous.

    This would also mean that the “record” for the youngest person being given contra-hormone therapy, not to mention surgery, is about 5 and 10 years off base respectively. If this was happening, you think someone might have noticed before now….

    Obviously also that because real Phalloplasties are one of the most complex and difficult surgeries on the planet… we can guess what quality of the work would be, if it were happening.

    I’d like to know if this story is true or not. That said, we all would have thought using transgender “tech” to “cure” gay people was the fevered imagination of a supermarket tabloid but its a reality in Iran.

    1. I have already expressed my doubts about the article. The newspaper is very long-established and highly regarded in India, but every paper is at the mercy of its sources.
      It is not a matter of records for hormone therapy, but of clinical value. There would be no value at all, and many ill-effects in giving testosterone at that age, so that aspect of the story is clearly wrong.
      The reality in Iran is that LGBT people are using the availability of reassignment surgery for transsexual people to attack the terrible discrimination they face. In the process they seem totally uncaring that they might destroy its availability for transsexual people. All the evidence is that the gender clinics in Iran try as hard, and with equally mixed success, to do right by their patients as do those elsewhere, albeit with some odd local quirks. Please don’t attack what can make the difference between life and death for a transsexual person.

      1. As a trans-person and an LGBTQIAPPQA rights activist I’m pretty familiar with the protocols.

        I was commenting on the generally approved process of puberty blockers followed by contra-hormone therapy before puberty starts, and then surgery after reaching the age of 18. Therefore I was pointing out that if this article was telling the truth, the earliest identified as transgender surgery going on in the world was not 16 as previously reported, but was in fact 11 years earlier.

        My commentary on the Iranian situation was based on the fact that there are many reports were lesbian and gay Iranians are pressured into gender reassignment rather than prosecuted for being gay/lesbian.

        Its wonderful that some transgender support exists in Iran, its wonderful that Khomeini saw fit to recognize it as a real condition, however with typical religious ignorance they have taken an idea and run with it. I do not call forcing a Gay man to have gender reassignment a “quirk”.

        1. Andrea B. 2 Jul 2011, 8:24am

          The allegations that homosexual people are forced to have a sex change in Iran are complete fabrications.

          In Iran the clinics actually use guidelines that are similar to those used by Louie Gooren in Amsterdam 20 years ago, with one addition. They reject anyone who will be homosexual after surgery.

          They also screen out homosexual people at the early stages of the process. Very few homosexuals even come to the clinics and are easily seperated out.

          In Iran the only the condition known as transsexualism was recognised as valid by Khomeni. The transgender umbrella was not recognised in any way. Transvestitism is illegal in Iran.

          Regarding the article itself. It is a complete and utter fabrication.

          The allegations are actually beginning to look like a re-run of the allegations that were used as a part of an intensive lobbying campaign by LGBT activists in Thailand two years ago to have sex reasignment surgery stopped on under 18’s. The exact same fabrications were used then.

          The calls to have adult sex reasignment surgery stopped in India have already begun.

        2. Staircase2 3 Jul 2011, 2:33am

          What on earth are all those extra letters for?! lol
          The list gets longer every day – at some point someone will have to rearrange them to make a word just to make it pronounceable!
          (specifically what’s the ‘APPQA ‘ stand for?)

  18. This is truly a sad situation! I wonder how many of these girls later in life will d seek reverse treatment for transgender from male to true gender female. The blind side of the situation is ““The figures are getting worse. In 2001 there were 886 girls born to every 1,000 boys in Delhi. Today there are only 866”. girls are not valued yet 134 men won’t have wives.yet they kill the girls that would produce their male heirs which would would further increase males without wives.It’s time the male paid a dowry!

  19. Man-made transsexual people. What kind of parent would doom their child to a life of pain and misery? And what does this say about a culture tghat promotes such a practice?

  20. Cpt Kibbles 29 Jun 2011, 12:33pm

    *sigh* yet again this another step for them to to irreversible damage to their population (just like china) i suppose viewing boys as more important will not go away any time soon but if they dont stop doing this soon they might well wipe out most of the population within a few generations when there are even fewer woman there, all that doesnt even go into the horrible idea of forcing this on children who obviously have no say in the matter

  21. Eddy - from 2007 29 Jun 2011, 2:37pm

    “Quite frankly, this is a major abuse of human rights and needs to be dealt with accordingly.”

    Scattermoon, you are so right: this IS a major abuse of human rights.

  22. Suvi-Tuuli Allan 29 Jun 2011, 3:45pm

    I believe that they are talking about intersex babies. In any case, it’s not the parents’ right to do stuff like this. Ask the kid.

  23. Jock S. Trap 30 Jun 2011, 10:34am

    Totally shameful and cruel.

  24. Andrea B. 1 Jul 2011, 7:46pm

    The article as reported in the Pink News is a complete fabrication.

    I think Pink News should withdraw this article.

    1. Staircase2 3 Jul 2011, 2:41am

      If its a fabrication then I agree, yes they should

      1. Andrea B. 3 Jul 2011, 8:32am

        The first offical rebuttals are already in on the issue. See:


        The story is a complete and utter fabrication which Pink News knows full well. The only reason to keep this story is blatant transphobia.

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