Shut Up, You Gross Bigots, The Kids Aren't Catching 'The Trans' From Each Other

Hide your wife and or your husband! Hide your kids! It's Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria, aka ROGD, and its coming for your family!

Or it's a total bullshit term coined by a doctor who calls herself a researcher of "gender dysphoria, detransition, and desistance," who made a spreadsheet of parents' subjective beliefs about their children and packaged it into a narrative to feed a panic that hurts trans kids. You be the judge!

In 2018, Dr. Lisa Littman of Brown University published a paper positing that adolescent girls were transmitting transgenderism to each other by means of social contagion, i.e. peer pressure.

Here's how she described her purpose:

In on-line forums, parents have reported that their children seemed to experience a sudden or rapid onset of gender dysphoria, appearing for the first time during puberty or even after its completion. Parents describe that the onset of gender dysphoria seemed to occur in the context of belonging to a peer group where one, multiple, or even all of the friends have become gender dysphoric and transgender-identified during the same timeframe. Parents also report that their children exhibited an increase in social media/internet use prior to disclosure of a transgender identity.

As the parent of three adolescents myself, let me point out that the probability that you, as a parent, are a reliable reporter on your kids' friend groups, much less their social media habits, is about as high as BTS spontaneously showing up to play a concert in your living room. And no, I haven't put this hypothesis to a rigorous, peer-reviewed scientific study. So that makes two of us.

Littman recruited participants by placing links to a 90-question survey on "three websites where parents and professionals had been observed to describe what seemed to be a sudden or rapid onset of gender dysphoria" and encouraged the sites' moderators and survey participants to share the link with anyone they thought might be interested — which is how you know you're getting a representative sample set, right?

But wait, there's more! Because the websites, 4thwavenow, Transgendertrend, and the now-defunct "offered support for parents, and expressed concern about the rush to diagnose young people as transgender and the rush to proceed to medical treatment for them," as Littman herself put it.

You will be FOR SHOCKED to find that among the 256 parents on EeekMyKidIsTrans Dot Com who checked the boxes "diagnosing" their children with "rapid onset gender dysphoria" — scare quotes because that is a term Littman made up — a bunch of them thought their kids caught the trans after getting in with a bad crowd. And because more of the respondents were assigned female sex at birth (AFAB) relative to those assigned male sex at birth (AMAB), she concluded that girls, being more susceptible to peer pressure, were trans-ing each other in high school.

Yeah, it's really that dumb. Amazingly, 63.8 percent of the respondent parents said they'd been called “transphobic” or “bigoted” by their children. By which we mean, it's amazing that 36.2 percent of these kids possessed such impressive restraint.

The paper came in for immediate criticism about its methodology, but also got Littman booked on Megyn Kelly's show. So, you know, both sides.

But, as NBC flagged yesterday, a new paper from the American Academy of Pediatrics by Dr. Jack Turban of the University of California San Francisco thoroughly debunks it, using data reported by kids in the 2017 and 2019 Youth Risk Behavior Survey.

Wanna see what passes for a massive subtweet in the medical profession?

Of note, this hypothesis was formed solely through the analysis of online parental survey data. As a subsequently issued correction to the article outlined, “ROGD is not a formal mental health diagnosis at this time. This report did not collect data from the adolescents and young adults or clinicians and therefore does not validate the phenomenon.”

Despite this parent-centered study prompting substantial social and methodological critique in tandem with calls for more robust research studies with samples of TGD [transgender] adolescents, the notion of ROGD has been used in recent legislative debates to argue for and subsequently enact policies that prohibit gender-affirming medical care for TGD adolescents. Notably, all relevant major medical organizations, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, oppose such legislative efforts.

Translation: Your paper is trash and you should feel terrible.

Play us more of your epic diss track, Doc:

Using a national sample of United States adolescents, we found that there were more TGD [Assigned Male At Birth] adolescents than TGD [Assigned Female At Birth] adolescents in both 2017 and 2019. Additionally, the total percentage of TGD adolescents in our sample decreased from 2.4% in 2017 to 1.6% in 2019. This decrease in the overall percentage of adolescents identifying as TGD is incongruent with an ROGD hypothesis that posits social contagion.

The AMAB:AFAB ratio, still in favor of more TGD AMAB participants for both years, shifted slightly toward TGD AFAB participants from 2017 to 2019. Importantly, this change was due to a reduction in the number of TGD AMAB participants, rather than an increase in TGD AFAB participants, again arguing against a notion of social contagion with unique susceptibility among AFAB youth.

Ah, well, so much for Littman's theory about a wave of impressionable teen girls giving each other the trans. Surely this will shut the bigots up and put this nonsense to bed about susceptible teen girls talking each other into "becoming boys."



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Liz Dye

Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.


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