What would you do if a man who you care about told you that he wanted to become a woman. That he was living a painfully difficult life, a tortured life, in the body he was born with. Would you support his decision to change his gender?
And what if that man was not a man but a boy. What if you had a son, a boy of only 12-years-old – a child but someone mature enough to know what he wants – and he told you he wished he was a girl. What would you do then?
In a recent Australian case, a 12-year-old child who was born physically male was granted approval by the Family Court of Australia to start puberty-blocking drugs.
The child – known as Jodie – had been living as a girl for some time, after telling her parents that she didn’t feel comfortable living as a boy.
The Family Court heard arguments from Jodie’s lawyers that Jodie would suffer serious psychological and emotional harm if she were to experience the effects of male puberty, after having – quite deliberately – chosen to be raised as a girl. The court granted Jodie approval to start Stage 1 quarterly injections; these injections will stop her voice from deepening and prevent any facial hair growth.
Whether or not Jodie will be allowed to progress to receiving Stage 2 drugs – oestrogen treatments, which would stimulate breast growth and start the physical transition to becoming female – is currently unknown.