Originally posted at 4th Wave Now
The Journal of Homosexuality published a 300-page special issue on childhood gender dysphoria in March 2012. It contains articles by several well known “gender specialists,” including Norman Spack, Kenneth Zucker, Jack Drescher, Diane Ehrensaft and others. These providers discuss their own clinical practice and experiences, informed by their viewpoints–and biases–about “trans” kids.
But of most interest to me is a piece by clinical psychologist David Schwartz, PhD., who is not a gender specialist himself, but knowledgeable about child psychology and the dynamics of family therapy. In his aptly named “Listening to Children Imagining Gender: Observing the Inflation of an Idea,” Schwartz critically and compassionately analyzes three of the other articles in the issue, focusing particularly on one written by Laura Edwards-Leeper, PhD., and Norman Spack, MD. Dr. Spack is a leading proponent of childhood medical transition, and heads up the Disorders of Sexual Development (DSD) and Gender Management Service (GeMs) at Boston Children’s Hospital, the first of its kind in the US.
Schwartz has two main points: