‘It’s called brainwashing!’: X reacts to researchers’ claim that ‘rapid onset gender dysphoria’ does exist

Don’t believe all those transphobic haters.

“Rapid onset gender dysphoria” (ROGD) does exist, according to some researchers who claim it could be the reason a staggering number of adolescent girls are suddenly identifying as transgender.

“Manhattan Institute fellow, Leor Sapir, along with researchers Lisa Littman and Michael Biggs, published a letter to the editor in the academic journal, Archives of Sexual Behavior, last year criticizing research conducted by University of California adolescent psychiatrist Jack Turban,” Fox News Digital reports. “Turban published a study in March 2023 based on the data from a 2015 survey called the U.S. Transgender Survey, in which he claims to find evidence against ‘rapid-onset gender dysphoria’ (ROGD), or the idea that adolescents with no history before puberty of gender distress experience gender confusion.”

Parents may think their little girls are suddenly waking up believing they are boys, but according to Turban and his team, it’s “really just a late disclosure of a previously formed trans identity and internalized gender issues, which in turn, they believe, disproves the existence of ROGD,” according to Fox News Digital.

“The main argument made against ROGD is that when parents say, ‘My kid just suddenly came out as trans at age 14, it was out of the blue… activists claim, ‘No, no, the kid always knew she was trans, but she just kept it a secret from her parents for many years and just disclosed it when she was 14,'” Sapir told the outlet. “This ties into the other claims about transgender identity being innate, possibly even biological… which in turn justifies the whole medical approach to treating gender-related distress in kids.”

The data Turban analyzed, Sapir and his researchers argue, prove the opposite of what he claimed. Transgenderism is not, in fact, innate.

Activists only say it is to justify life-altering medical transitions.

“I think it’s important to understand why the transgender movement is so adamant in rejecting RODG and the reason is that, at least in the United States, there’s a lot of importance that activists attach to the idea that being transgender is innate and immutable,” Sapir said. “It’s something that comes from within you that you have no control over. People are born that way, so to speak, and as you can probably tell, this narrative is essential as a justification for medical transition, especially of minors.”

“So, any suggestion that trans identity can be caused by anything other than this kind of immutable essence that we have within us …” he added, “must be rejected out of hand because it suggests that trans identity is not authentic, but it’s a mental shortcut for dealing with other issues.”

ROGD is a thing, Sapir insisted, and it often shows up in adolescent girls with high rates of mental health problems.

“That demographic only started to appear on the radar of adolescent medicine and mental health clinics in the late 2000s, and it really picked up in the mid-2010s among teens,” he said. “This was a survey of adults conducted in 2015, so the first thing that stuck out to me was this survey is too outdated, how could you possibly use a survey from 2015 of adults to figure out a phenomenon that was just starting to take root among teenagers during those years.”

“In addition,” Fox News Digital reports, “Sapir explained that in order to participate in the survey, respondents had to currently be ‘transgender-identified,’ so anyone who identified as transgender as a teenager, but had desisted by 18 years old was automatically excluded.”

“Even though it’s not necessarily inherent to ROGD to desist or detransition, people who identify as transgender out of social pressure … it’s certainly conceivable that by the time they reached maturity, they’ll no longer do so,” he said.

Online, many believe both Turban and Sapir missed the mark.

“It’s an evil sickness brought on by a political narrative!” exclaimed one X user. “It’s brainwashing! It’s that simple!”


Melissa Fine


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