As the transgender movement continues to develop, the cultural sentiment has moved rapidly toward acceptance and “affirmation.” While some believe the affirmation campaign is a step in the right direction, others are concerned that a rush to champion hormones and gender reassignment surgery while ignoring other potential drivers of gender dysphoria could ultimately do more hard than good.
The affirmation of gender dysphoria has even gained steam among the youth population. According to a study from The Williams Institute, “an estimated 0.7 percent of youth ages 13 to 17 … identify as transgender in the United States.” This is approximately 150,000 young people.
Despite the increasing social acceptance of transgenderism by Hollywood and the mainstream press, there is a segment of the trans population that is feeling regret, and seeking to detransition.
Walter Heyer, a former male-to-female transgender individual, runs a website called Sexchangeregret.com. The website serves as a contact point for Heyer to help those who are seeking to detransition.
On Wednesday, I had the opportunity to speak with Heyer about his life and his work. In part two of this interview, Heyer discusses the shockingly high suicide rate among the post-op transgender population, the dangerous consequences of youth transitions, the future of the trans movement, his relationship with his ex-wife and kids, and more.
DW: There are a lot of people who suggest that the high suicide rate among post-op trans individuals is due to social cruelty and nonacceptance. What’s your take on that?
HEYER: No. No, no. It’s due to transitioning. Society has nothing to do with it. It’s these buffoons that are cutting people’s body parts off and stuffing people full of hormones and making a boatload of money off of it. It’s totally unnecessary. The people run into the wall and find out they never needed to do it, and many of them just take their life because they feel like it was taken from them, just as I attempted suicide. I just wasn’t successful, thankfully.
You can go look at The U.K. Guardian, July 2004, the headline says that sex changes are ineffective, but people don’t talk about those people, they talk about all the stuff that the left-wing is pumping out there as gospel. It’s total junk.
The studies show – I even reported in one of my books – that they can’t even find 90% of the people who have gone through the transition to use them in studies because they’ve probably committed suicide, they’ve detransitioned, or they’ve just gone underground. So, most of the stuff that’s put out about society, it’s bogus, but that’s what it is.
DW: So what would you tell young people, specifically teenagers, maybe even younger, who are thinking about transitioning?
HEYER: Well, they need to understand that there are going to be huge consequences – and that I have actually worked with a few young people through their parents – what we have today is mostly what would be called a social contagion. They don’t have gender dysphoria. This has just become a social phenomenon. So kids get on their computers and they get into these chat rooms – some people call it rapid onset of gender dysphoria, but these are not individuals with gender dysphoria; they’re just people who do this as a social construct to gain friendships with buddies who are doing the same thing. Mostly women; they’re girls age 14/15, some 13, some a little younger. But it’s the hormone blockers that are really, really destructive.
It’s medical malpractice. It’s child abuse. It should be stopped at all costs because the stuff they’re using wasn’t even designed to be used for what they’re using it for. So, it’s pretty horrible.
I think what we’re going to see as time unfolds here in the next few years is that it’s going to blow up in people’s faces – and it’s already starting now. We’re seeing a lot more people requesting detransition information. I’m working with a school teacher in New Jersey today, finishing working with a pharmacist in Boston, and I’m working with another person in Georgia who works for a phone company down there. A 21 year old, transitioned at 18, is now detransitioning at 21. So, we’re seeing the detransitions now are younger and younger, and this is because they’re just pushing it on everybody. They’re pushing it on schools, making it like candy. Anybody can transition. You could diagnose a rock with gender dysphoria today. It’s just sickening, is what really is. It’s barbaric.
DW: What do you think the result of all this social acceptance of dysphoria will be?
HEYER: I write about everybody that is willing to let me write about their story. I mean, the guy who said he had gender dysphoria that I wrote about, they ended up giving him 167 “gender affirming” surgeries, and he’s still unhappy. I mean, this is where we are. Any time that surgeons will do 167 surgeries on somebody as “gender affirmation,” they need to really lock the doctors up and throw away the key. It’s absurd.
I met the guy face-to-face in a coffee shop in Maryland, and he’s asking me for help. I mean, the guy looks like he’s been in a fire because he’s had so many surgeries.
We had another guy in California, Billy, who, when he was 11 years old was at camp and his diving coach sexually molested him. What we have with a lot of these young people is that when they’re sexually molested by an adult, they don’t even want to tell anybody about it. And secondly, they want to remove the genitalia they have as a defense mechanism against ever being sexually abused by somebody again. So, it’s much more about a defense mechanism for a large portion of this population than it is about transitioning. And girls report to me, like this one I’m working with, she was sexually molested by her dad for five years. She wanted to take on the identity of a male as a way to not be attractive to someone who might want to sexually molest them. In both cases, it’s a defense mechanism against being sexually molested or improperly treated. So they migrate.
This girl migrated to being a lesbian. Now she says she’s not a lesbian anymore and she’s not a transgender anymore and she’s coming back, letting her hair grow out, and she’s working through the issues with her molestation. This is pretty typical. Each story is a little different. I’ve had one girl contact me – her mother married a guy and that guy had a daughter the same age as her, and the father, when the mother was gone, had the two girls engage in lesbian sex with each other because he got sexually aroused by it. He did this to the two girls for quite a long time.
The girl contacts me and says, “I don’t want to do this anymore. I became a transgender because of what happened with my stepfather.” There are stories behind these. Most people don’t want to talk about them because they’re pretty ugly. I think it’s instructive for us to understand that these people aren’t born that way. This is a childhood developmental disorder. You can make a kid “gender dysphoric.”
Gender dysphoria is a very simple thing. They’re consistent, persistent, and insistent on being a different gender. Well, kids are persistent and insistent and consistent about everything. And as a matter of fact, all mental disorders are insistent, consistent, and persistent. So, the idea that gender dysphoria is some kind of magical diagnosis, again, needs to be examined because intellectually it’s dishonest to make that suggestion.
DW: Do you think all these new people coming forward publicly who are detransitioning will ever lead to a reversal of this as a cultural movement?
HEYER: No, because I think they still have the people who have autogynephilia and a transvestic fetish who will always migrate to that. But I think it probably will help a lot of people who were – the more information we get out – if they were sexually molested or have other issues, if we can just get the people who are writing new standards of care to allow good, sound, effective, free transitioning psychotherapy, we could probably eliminate 90% of them fairly quickly, and work on what actually caused them to want to identify as transgender. Like I said, in what I do, I find that 100% of the time, people can tell me, “If I knew that, and they would have treated that, I wouldn’t have done it.”
DW: What is your relationship like with your pre-transition family?
HEYER: My daughter says I’m her hero for coming back. I still have a relationship through text message and stuff with my ex. I see my son frequently. And so the relationship is good. Some of the people have come after my son because he works in a place where there’s a lot of people who are LGBT, and so they have bullied and called him names and stuff because of what I do. So that’s an unfortunate part. But I have a good relationship with them. I’ve been married for 22 years to a nice lady, and a real one as a matter of fact. Life is good. We published six books, and I travel around speaking all the time.
DW: Is there something that we haven’t touched on in this interview that you would want people to know?
HEYER: I just want people to be very cautious about selecting a rainbow therapist, specialist, who deals with transgenders because what I have discovered is that they only see gender dysphoria and they don’t make any attempt to do any effective diagnosis of comorbidities, which is one reason why I’m seeing that people come back. When they come to me, they’re now very open and willing to find out what happened and what went wrong. I understand that when they’re going into the process, it’s probably a little more difficult to pry them open and discuss that, but that’s why it’s much more important because they can save a person a great deal of agony and pain.
So, I personally tell people, just run away from the people who say that they’re transgender specialists and do approving of transition surgery, and go to some psychotherapist who’s not of that ilk. Go to somebody who may be more able to look deeper at comorbid disorders. It’s probably just some good advice that people would probably benefit from.
I’d like to thank Walt Heyer for taking the time to speak with me about this incredibly important issue. For more information, you can visit Sexchangeregret.com, or Heyer’s personal website here.