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Woman who cuts off breasts proves danger of ‘gender affirmation’

In May, a New Zealand newspaper reported that an 18-year-old woman was admitted to the emergency room after attempting to remove her own breasts due to fears about an upcoming pool party. Despite New Zealand having universal healthcare, which includes ‘gender-affirming’ medical options, this case has been widely reported as evidence of a larger system that discriminates against transgender-identifying people.

For example, LGBTQ Nation states, “The lack of gender-affirming care drove (her) to this desperate act.” Another New Zealand site stated: “Call for better access to gender confirmation surgery after Kiwi teen tries to remove his own breasts at home.” The teenager was already taking testosterone and was on a waiting list for an elective double mastectomy, covered by the country’s health care system.

The teen simply couldn’t wait the year, and the “significant psychological stress of having breasts at an upcoming pool party forced (her) to attempt the surgery (herself),” the teen said. New Zealand Medical Journal. So she watched YouTube videos about self-amputations and started removing her own breasts. She was rushed to hospital, where her self-inflicted wounds were treated. However, to prevent further self-harm, the doctors chose to perform the double mastectomy at that time.

The hospital proudly reported that the patient was doing well: “He reported an improvement in his self-esteem and confidence and his ability to complete schoolwork, and was looking forward to enrolling in college.” The case is being used by activists, including medical professionals, to push for greater “access” for transgender-identifying patients. “With increasing demand and associated psychological and potential physical harm, it is crucial that public services become more accessible to an underserved population,” the statement said. New Zealand Medical Journal.

Gender Minorities Aotearoa Executive Director Te Ahi Wi-Hongi, implying that home surgeries are common due to long wait times, told a New Zealand newspaper: “No one wants to do self-surgery, and people know they are unlikely to have good results, but for most there is an absolute lack of options.”

While LGBT activists are exploiting this case as evidence of a greater need for transgender services, paid for by the government and available with few to no barriers, they seem oblivious to the message they are really sending. We are repeatedly told that transgender people do not suffer from a mental disorder and that their only burden is a lack of social acceptance and access to healthcare.

A sign of poor mental health

However, here is a young woman who has exactly what activists need and who continues to be driven to drastic self-harm in her pursuit of so-called gender identity and validation. We’re meant to believe that waiting a year for free elective surgery was so unacceptable and oppressive that she had no choice but to cut open her own breasts at home?

Outside of the transgender context, self-harm, especially of genitalia, is considered a serious example of mental illness or problems. A 2023 study published in The American Journal of Psychiatry on male genital self-mutilation (GSM) states: “The available literature suggests that GSM is a manifestation of co-occurring psychiatric illnesses (namely psychotic disorders and substance use disorders).”

In one case of a man who performed this procedure on himself, “the patient was started on antipsychotic medications given his documented history of schizophrenia and his health care providers’ concerns about symptoms of delusions and a disorganized thought process.” How can one case of self-harm related to sexual body parts be the result of delusions and irrational behavior that is considered a serious psychiatric condition, while another case of self-harm is a legitimate cry for help for so-called medically necessary healthcare?

Body image disorders

A condition known as body integrity disorder (BID) represents a rare situation in which there is a “mismatch between a person’s mental perception of their body image and their actual physical self.” A famous example is of a woman who poured drain cleaner in her eyes to blind herself because she thought she was meant to be blind. A CNN article reported a support group of sixteen men who all wanted to surgically remove their left leg.

The Mayo Clinic defines another similar condition: “Body dysmorphic disorder is a mental health condition in which you cannot stop thinking about one or more perceived flaws or flaws in your appearance – a flaw that seems minor or cannot be seen by others. . But you may feel so embarrassed, ashamed, and anxious that you avoid many social situations.”

Both conditions, as well as the self-harm example above, require non-surgical treatments that focus on therapy and medications. But then again, a young woman attempting to cut off her own breasts is seen as evidence that “gender-affirming care,” or elective surgery, is needed more than ever.

The woman who blinded herself also feels a sense of positive self-image and relief in her decision. She says, “I was so happy, I felt this was who I was meant to be.” She also said: “I went blind on purpose, but I don’t think it was a choice.”

Dr. Michael First, professor of clinical psychiatry at Columbia University in New York, argued on the case that admitting to the patient may be the best path forward for this condition – but after elective amputation or the elimination of healthy bodily functions, “how do you know if Once you do it, they will be satisfied?

The woman insisted: “I would say it is selfish to deny treatment to someone with a disorder. This is not a choice, it is a need based on a brain disorder.” It’s fair to wonder how this differs from transgender demands for elective amputations and the elimination of healthy bodily functions.

It should not be controversial to witness a young woman mutilating herself at home over fears of a pool party and to recognize the wider medical and ethical concerns surrounding so-called ‘gender-affirming care’. Yet LGBT advocates, along with many medical professionals, insist that this is merely evidence that transgender-identifying people need “medically necessary care” funded by taxpayers.


Chad Felix Greene is a senior contributor to The Federalist. He is the author of ‘Surviving Gender: My Journey Through Gender Dysphoria’ and is a social writer who focuses on truth in the media, conservative ideas and causes, and true equality under the law. You can follow him on Twitter @chadfelixg.

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