27 Comments

As a parent whose child came to believe he was trans after being immersed in toxic online forums on Reddit and Discord, I was appalled by the evidence of grooming I saw immediately . I was dismissed, shamed, silenced, and threatened with the myth of suicide by both of my two children, therapists, coworkers, and teachers at a school I had dedicated 14 years of volunteer time to. This has taken a toll on my marriage, caused me to resign from my job, destroyed my trust in institutions, caused me to question my own sanity, political views, definition of faith and family. My lowest day was the day my employer celebrated the success of her son’s ( 21 years old) orchiectomy in a work group chat. I was terrified this was the path my son (then 15) had put himself on before he had ever engaged in intimacy, or experienced real loving affection for another human being. That day, I looked for a rafter in my basement to hang myself from because of the hopelessness I felt. It took sheer will to face each day. There seemed to be nowhere to turn. This darkness is like nothing I’ve ever faced. It has taken 4.5 years to rebuild my self esteem, my parental agency, and to get control of the fear that gripped my heart like a vice. Living in that state 24/7 is unbearable. This is what this ideology does to mothers and fathers and families. Today I give thanks to the underground parent networks of people like me... those who knew there was no way three kids on my own street could suddenly be trans. What I just don’t understand is how anyone sees this as possible that you can become your self by denying yourself. As a product of the “free to be you and me” generation, I am still jaw droppingly stunned by this entire idea! This movement is based on affirming self hatred! We must expose the link to online activism and grooming to the declaration of ROGD. Our kids are the victims of a culture where there are too few Jamie Reeds! With voices like yours, I grow in hope and faith in humanity once more! TY!

Expand full comment

I have my own clinic horror story. Clinicians voicing “support” to my 15yo child in his desire to transition despite my refusal to consent. But that’s not the story here. The story here is you. It’s not heroic to do what’s easy, what comes naturally. It’s heroic to find your way out — let the gnawing discomfort find its way to the surface and, despite the negative consequences, do what you know to be right. The past harm and regret doesn’t change that. It makes it all the more remarkable that you spoke out instead of just going along or getting out and fading into the background. You are a hero, Jamie. We need a million more of you. I hope you’ve given others the courage to help end this tragedy.

Expand full comment

I just want to say it's the mothers who will bring this movement to its knees (you are a mother Ms. Reed)!

Everything you said about the fathers...that was not the case in my family. I was the one who stopped my daughter from going on testosterone my husband (a physician) made all the appointments at the gender clinic behind my back. I found the studies. I shut it down. I didn't think it would work it but I was lucky. With some help from an excellent psychologist and psychiatrist who warned me they (OHsU) weren't offering psych support only testosterone. I was warned. I had tools to make an argument with the director Amy Penkin. The manipulative tactics she tried were obviously rote and scripted. Lie after lie. If what they are doing is on the level then why so much lying and blatant deceit?

Parents dealing with this need to document all drs’ appointments, and all gender clinic conversations, then if it gets dire...tell the gender clinic you will go to the press and tell them they aren't doing any psych screenings at OHSU pediatric gender clinic. They tend to lose the problematic parents' phone numbers and “forget” to reschedule appointments.

These people at clinics are used to getting their way and it also was convenient that I told them I was in touch with the Reuters team (who wrote those excellent articles on pediatric American gender clinics). I did talk to the Reuters reporter, Chad Terhune (off record). And who did the Reuters profile...OHSU. All those smiling happy people. The kids didn't look happy but the clinicians had giant smiles.

https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/usa-transyouth-data/

Expand full comment

Thank you, Jamie Reed! The tide is turning and people are beginning to realize the lie that is “gender affirming care.” People like you have made this reality possible! Carry on! So many people are counting on you!

Expand full comment

Thank you so much for your honest accounting of what happened and is still happening in many places. This article explains so much in detail from someone who was there and knows. It helps so much to have the truth come from you -rather than just the parents and detransitioners. I think your idea to require a pause if one parents objects to transitioning is a really good one to keep families from ripping apart further than they already are.

Expand full comment

Your piece long-winded but says nothing. In your original complaint, you made a lot of charges, but now you admit that you only handled intake. What you admitted here contradicts your original claim. You are voicing the same lies and distortions about gender affirming care that have been constantly repeated. The only difference is this is a new avenue. Your comments have been refuted by employees at the medical facility as well as patients and their families. Please stop lying and trying to cause harm.

Expand full comment

Ms. Reed, I wonder if you have any understanding how much harm you have done. Your article fanned the flames such that now, kids in Missouri who need care will not be able to access it. You set your opinions ahead of a scientific consensus, and got between kids and parents and their doctors. I wonder if you will ever feel shame for this.

Expand full comment

What you did was cowardly. If you believed in your convictions, you would have made a complaint with the medical board. If that didn’t work, talk to LGBTQ organizations and parents about your concerns and have those uncomfortable conversations. Instead, you hid behind transphobic rightwing lawyers and our attorney general. One referred to gay people as “cockroaches” and the other attempted through an EO to take gender affirming care away from all people, including adults like your husband. Hiding behind powerful bigots is the opposite of heroic. Yeah, it is a shame that the state “had” to get involved because you put a target on our kids’ backs. Now many of us are getting our kids out of Missouri so they will be safe from the harm you helped start. How exactly are you protecting kids? The sad thing is that if there were a problem with gender affirming care, you made it that much harder to believe it. Allying yourself with people who are racist, transphobic, and science denying destroyed your credibility with the people you are supposedly trying to help, our kids. Even our kids understand that people like Andrew Bailey and our MO Legislators are allied with hate groups like the Proud Boys and Moms for Liberty, groups that want them dead.

Expand full comment

No speech (or writing) is more powerful than that which emerges without filters or artifice from the direct personal experience of a person who has committed herself to representing that experience truthfully. This is that. Thank you.

Expand full comment

Ms. Reed: Are there not cases where a child never even makes the decision at all? Situations in which overzealous professionals or parents insist on it?

Expand full comment

Clarifying Red Pill meaning! Hi Jaime, Interestingly I just the other day decided to scour the internet for an informative article about trans and the Matrix. So, interesting that you mention the red pill. Link is after this paragraph. If I read the article right, and with my knowledge of seeing the movies many times, the red pill attack was actually calling you a Republican after all, but there is more to it. Essentially, in the movie Neo takes the red pill and therefor learns the truth that they are living in a computer simulated world and he then is able to rescue his actual body to be in the real world which is sadly environmentally devastated. Apparently Republicans decided to take on the idea of taking the red pill for themselves, as if THEY see through things ie Republican conspiracists call themselves red pillers! But ironically the movie's meaning of red pill is to see behind the falsehood . . . and it was actually a metaphor for being trans. The film makers wanted Neo to be a female in the "real" world free from "the matrix". So, all to say this metaphor is ridiculously loaded and contradictory.

https://journals.publishing.umich.edu/fc/article/id/3608/

Forget the Red Pill: Queer Politics but also Transhumanist Ideology in <i>The Matrix</i>

Following the <i>Matrix</i> trilogy (1999, 2003, 2003) the franchise’s iconic red pill trope became an anti-feminist meme in neo-fascist circles. This essay analyzes how <i>Matrix Resurrections</i> (2021) reclaims the red pill in an explicitly feminist and queer narrative. But the fourth <i>Matrix</i> film also is an ideological fantasy: <i>Resurrections</i> resonates just too much with a transhumanist belief in a human-machine synergy that also fuels Silicon Valley’s new American Dream. Propelled by this transhuman delusion, <i>The Matrix</i> ultimately has little to say about life in the era of climate catastrophe and control capitalism.

journals.publishing.umich.edu

Also, I am so grateful for you. I wish we could talk directly and hope we will some day. I'm a psychotherapist in private practice in a college town and have a young daughter, and I feel alone in this journey of gathering my facts and thoughts and coming forward. I don't work with children but it is still relevant because of young adult clients. I, culture wise, am surrounded by it, as it were.

Expand full comment

Jaime, I guess I see your piece partially as an account of your examination of your self, of your evolving understanding and awareness of how wrong it all started to feel... and your resolution to get out of that situation and try to bring transparency to what was occurring... to make things better.

I hope you can truly feel that you've realigned yourself with a path where you're conscientiously making decisions you feel right about. And I hope that your heart can be light and at peace. Don't beat yourself up about it. 💕

Expand full comment