Disclaimer: While we cannot endorse Scott Newgent’s own self-identification as transgender, we are grateful to be able to share the first hand witness offered in this powerful piece.
by Scott Newgent in Newsweek
I am a 48-year-old transgender man. I was thrilled when the medical community told me six years ago that I could change from a woman to a man. I was informed about all the wonderful things that would happen due to medical transition, but all the negatives were glossed over. Since then, I have suffered tremendously, including seven surgeries, a pulmonary embolism, an induced stress heart attack, sepsis, a 17-month recurring infection, 16 rounds of antibiotics, three weeks of daily IV antibiotics, arm reconstructive surgery, lung, heart and bladder damage, insomnia, hallucinations, PTSD, $1 million in medical expenses, and loss of home, car, career and marriage. All this, and yet I cannot sue the surgeon responsible—in part because there is no structured, tested or widely accepted baseline for transgender health care.
Read that again: There is no structured, tested, or widely accepted baseline for transgender health care. Not for 42-year-olds, and not for the many minors embarking on medical transition in record numbers. It is not transphobic or discriminatory to discuss this—we as a society need to fully understand what we are encouraging our children to do to their bodies.
Throughout transition, I second-guessed my decisions, but each counseling session and doctor’s appointment amounted to one more push convincing me I could be cured of being born in the wrong body. The truth was that I didn’t fit in as a dominant, aggressive, assertive lesbian. The dream of finally fitting in dangled like a carrot: The idea that I could fit in catapulted me to a time much like adolescence, with its drive for acceptance, inclusive peers and the fantasy of being normal.
During my post-operation 17 months of sheer survival, I discovered that transgender health care is experimental and that large swaths of the medical industry encourage minors to transition due, at least in part, to fat profit margins. I was gobsmacked. Each day I researched more and became increasingly appalled. As I jumped from ER to ER desperately seeking help, I realized that nobody knew what to do. Each physician told me to return to the original surgeon. I was trapped like a child with an abusive parent…
Read the rest in Newsweek