Case Study: A Mother Rushes to Get Her 15-Year Old Daughter’s Breasts Removed
“Time is of the essence” for this mom eager to get her daughter a double mastectomy.
On October 13, 2021, in a private Facebook group with nearly 13 thousand members called “Parents Supporting Parents of Trans Children,” a mother made a post about her daughter’s long history of mental health issues that has ultimately resulted in her pursuing a transition from a girl to a boy. In the post, the mother tells the group to “follow your child’s lead” “even if you think it’s crazy.”
She goes on to describe the intense struggles her daughter—who she now refers to as her “son”—has experienced for many years before finally coming out as transgender. She reveals that seven years ago they began family therapy due to her daughter’s “emotional disturbance and psych diagnoses,” and says the daughter has been going to individual therapy sessions ever since.
The mother lists her daughter’s timeline of mental health issues, which include:
Age 7: inappropriate internet searches
Age 9: suicidal ideation
Age 10: ADHD and anxiety
Age 12: cutting
At age 13, however, the daughter came out to her mother as transgender, and only a year later met with a plastic surgeon, where her daughter informed the surgeon that she “wants them (breasts) just gone, because I want to be a boy.”
The mother says, seemingly with trepidation, that “at this point I realize my kiddo is trying desperately to tell me something he doesn’t yet fully understand himself, and he needs my help to navigate the murky waters” (our emphasis). The says she began educating herself about transgender issues, and started “being more vocal with my support of him as a person, even if I don’t fully believe his reasons” (our emphasis).
A month into the school year, the mother says her daughter is now “fully socially transitioned” as a boy at school. Classmates and even upperclassmen say they “have his back,” including the school Principal.
Eight months later, on June 8, 2022, the mother returned to the group to describe her “rollercoaster” week of getting insurance to approve her daughter’s “top surgery” (a euphemism for an elective double mastectomy) and “talking through last minute jitters” before checking her daughter into the hospital. To calm these jitters, the daughter brought a “comfort item”—a stuffed animal cat—demonstrating that she is still very much an emotionally immature and vulnerable child. It may as well have been a teddy bear.
But despite the comfort animal, the reality of the situation began to weigh heavily on the child, and the mother reported that “By the time the surgeon came back for a last minute consult, [her daughter] was nearly in tears and voiced that [she] was having second thoughts and didn’t feel [she] was emotionally ready.” So they called off the surgery, and went home.
The tears continued at home, and the mother says her daughter’s “mood tanked” out of regret for not going through with the surgery. But instead of reassuring her daughter that they would be supportive of any decision, including not going through with the procedure, she tells her daughter that “when he IS ready” she and the daughter’s stepdad would “do everything in [their] power to make it happen.”
Responding to a commenter, the mother coveys some regret in not pressuring her daughter more to have the surgery—”part of me feels like I should have nudged him just a little harder…”
In an earlier post on March 1, 2022, we discover that mother would like to have her daughter’s surgery over with soon while they are covered by Medicaid in order to avoid paying the deductibles and copay for treatments that will kick in once she re-marries and her and her daughter join the new husband’s health insurance.
She explains that her 14-year old daughter is already “*very* large chested,” which is a source for her dysphoria. But having a large chest at such a young age can make any girl feel self-conscious, and a hallmark of adolescence is to feel uncomfortable and anxiety toward your changing body. In every post, there is no convincing indication that her daughter actually suffers from true gender dysphoria instead of simply being an average teenage girl insecure with her body, who also happens to be suffering from a multitude of mental health issues.
The mother also says that “there’s a niggling urgency in the back of my head that we should schedule the surgery sooner rather than later,” given the uncertainty regarding the future legality of performing elective double mastectomies on minors in Texas.
Commenters are unanimously in favor of getting her daughter on the operating table as soon as possible. “Your son’s mental health can’t wait,” “do the surgery sooner rather than later,” “postpone your elopement” they say, displaying the sense of urgency that echoes the commonly stated false dichotomy of parents needing to choose between having a “trans child or a dead child.”
Another commenter tells the mother to “Move it forward as quickly as possible,” and to “Push it through.” The commenter also guilt trips the mother by telling her, condescendingly, “It’s not about you.”
Leading up to the May 11 surgery date, the mother reveals that she is having difficulty getting an “affirming” letter of support from her daughter’s former therapist, which is needed to authorize the surgery: “The information that she [sic] providing isn’t exactly affirming, at least not enough to sway Medicaid’s decision I don’t think.” Because the surgery is only a few weeks away, the mother stresses that “time is absolutely of the essence.”
In a comment, we then learn that the reluctant therapist has been her daughter’s therapist for the last four years, and the mother even states that the therapist “is well aware of his other mental health issues.” The therapist is also aware the daughter has claimed to be transgender for over a year.
The mother then reveals that the therapist’s original letter of support had included a quote from her daughter saying that she “‘wants to try out’ male pronouns and his chosen name.” The mother is worried that this is “not the most affirmative information,” and so she is going to provide the therapist with a letter template from the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) and “ask her to redraft” the letter.
One commenter directs the mother to “tell that therapist exactly what you need.”
The mother and group members appear to view doctors and therapists not as professionals whose advice they should heed and respect, but as obstacles in their way or people to order around to fulfill their every demand to obtain hormones and surgery for their children as quickly as possible.
Fast forward to “pre-op day,” the mother still does not have approval from the insurance company for the surgery because the daughter’s former therapist “has been hedging on writing a letter of support.” Rather than trust the expertise of the therapist most familiar with her daughter’s long history of mental health issues, the mother says she has been persistently “nagging her” for the letter.
However, it now appears the mother does not need the therapist to write a letter of support because—”GOOD NEWS!”—the surgeon told her that she can simply have an endocrinologist, who they’ve met with only a small number of times, write the support letter and it will be “completed in one business day.” The mother is ecstatic, and types in all caps, “THIS IS GONNA HAPPEN!”
Unfortunately the story ends abruptly here, as the mother has not posted any updates on the Parents Supporting Parents of Trans Children Facebook Group.
One thing to note about gender-affirming care is how quickly an entire history of mental health problems is immediately explained away and ignored the moment any child “comes out” as transgender. Instead of viewing the sudden emergence of a trans identity as yet another manifestation of underlying mental issues, “gender dysphoria” is immediately taken to be the root cause underlying all of it, with transition viewed as a panacea.
While this is only one case study, this is by no means rare. Every day, countless parents arrive in these private Facebook Groups seeking guidance from strangers. As we have reported elsewhere, these groups act as indoctrination centers for scared and confused parents—mostly mothers—looking for help and advice for their equally confused children who have succumbed to gender ideology. But instead of help, group members guilt trip and shame parents into fast-tracking their children to hormones and surgeries.
We hope that by bringing these stories to light, we can help the public better understand the cult-like nature of these groups, and the true extent of the harm being brought upon vulnerable children in the name of “Social Justice” and “acceptance.”
Breaking the Spell of Social Justice is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
If you’d like to see more reports on my findings in the many private Facebook groups I have access to for "Parents of Trans Kids" and "Trans Teachers," please consider donating or becoming a paid subscriber. I am completely independent and can only continue my journalistic endeavors with your support.