“On April 26, my friend Prisha testified in favor of this bill. Representative Beth Liston asked her if she was affirmed in her trans identity and medicalized in the state of Ohio. Prisha responded perfectly, “If you wait until you have a detransitioner from Ohio, someone has already hurt, and you have failed.”
My name is Morgan. I am the Ohio detransitioner that Prisha warned you about. I’m 26 years old and was trans-identified for five years.
In March of this year, after trying to ignore the doubt and regret that began to build around my transition, I woke up one morning with the realization that my trans identity was never about becoming my most genuine self or living my life authentically. Instead, it was a desperate last-ditch attempt to become someone else to escape my own identified trauma and body and mental health issues.
When I started exploring gender ideology, my life was in shambles. I was in an emotionally manipulative lesbian relationship. I was isolating myself in my apartment and drinking regularly. I wasn’t attending my classes or socializing normally. I had become captivated by the idea that my female body was fundamentally wrong, and seduced by the prospect that there was something that I could do about it.
When I sought out help for my complicated feelings towards my female sex, I was affirmed, which is to say I was put on life-altering cross-sex hormones, with minimal questioning or treatment of my underlying issues. At 21, a licensed practitioner in the state of Ohio wrote me a prescription for medically unnecessary synthetic testosterone. Just one month after my 22nd birthday, I went under the knife for a double mastectomy based on a recommendation letter from a therapist who still holds an active license in this state.
I sat with these practitioners for hours describing how uncomfortable I was in my body, how disconnected I felt from myself, and how hard it was to walk through the world as a masculine woman. The nurse practitioner who prescribed me testosterone told me that I would transition beautifully and that no one would ever be able to tell that I had been born as a female. After a lifetime of body image issues and an increasing desperation to become anybody about myself, that was like music to my ears.
I don’t believe that not transitioning was ever considered by my practitioners. I feel like once I walked into that gender clinic, medicalization was the only option. I needed the practitioners that I trusted to help me make peace with my body, not affirm my delusion that hormones and a cosmetic mastectomy might make me feel better. I needed them to just say no.
This week is the fifth anniversary of my first testosterone shot. I was told that this experimental medicalization would save my life. My parents were made to believe that this was the only way to keep their daughter alive, healthy, and happy.
No practitioner bothered to dig deeper with me on why I felt so disconnected from my female body and why thought giving myself an endocrine imbalance, amputating my healthy breasts, and masquerading as a member of the opposite sex was such an appealing treatment plan. I can say with 100% certainty that this medicalization only gave me new health problems and mental distress. I will never ever legitimatize these experimental treatments as anything based on love or care for an individual.
Under the euphemistic guise of life-saving “gender-affirming care” practitioners in our state have become enablers with their prescription pads. At its highest point, my testosterone levels were 11 times the maximum range for a female body. Is this really the standard of care that we want for our Ohioans?
When I realized that my medicalization was nothing more than a very elaborate placebo, endorsed by multiple medical professionals. I made the immediate decision to detransition.
It was all over. I quit testosterone cold turkey and endured four of the most brutal months of my life. I had no energy. I didn’t shower for almost two weeks; I would cry upwards of 10 times a day – shocked at what I had been allowed to do to my body in such a vulnerable state with an underdeveloped brain. I would lay in bed all day, sitting with the realization that I would never be able to breastfeed children that I didn’t even know I wanted at the time when I got my mastectomy. I didn’t know if those feelings would ever go away. So, I started to make plans to commit suicide.
My family was so worried that my parents made me go home so they could make sure I was eating, bathing, and sleeping. I sent a letter to my prescribing practitioner detailing how much regret I felt and all of the things I wish were different about the treatment I received. And she never replied.
I had been working with that same therapist for seven years by the time I called her with my realizations about the issues underlying my decision to transition. I sent her a list of everything that should have been treated instead of getting hormones and a mastectomy. And I will never forget hearing her tell me, “I failed you.” She told me that this was such a new field of psychology that modern medicine is still at the forefront of learning how to treat gender dysphoria. Isn’t that funny because the current narrative says that this medicalization is settled science?
I couldn’t give informed consent at 21. So, why are we pretending that children can do that? With this bill, we can ensure that children in Ohio are protected from ever waking up and finding themselves in my position.
I wish I never opened the Pandora’s box of gender ideology. I wish I had been told no by the practitioners that I trusted. I wish I could say that I’m the exception to the rule. But everybody in this room knows that that is false. I come to you wearing the scars of this medical scandal asking you to please vote in support of House Bill 68 to protect Ohio’s children.
Thank you for listening.”