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NYTimes columnist Pamela Paul: ‘As Kids, They Thought They Were Trans. They No Longer Do…’…

NYTimes columnist Pamela Paul: ‘As Kids, They Thought They Were Trans. They No Longer Do…’…

Grace Powell was 12 or 13 when she discovered she could be a boy.

Growing up in a relatively conservative community in Grand Rapids, Mich., Powell, like many teenagers, didn’t feel comfortable in her own skin. She was unpopular and frequently bullied. Puberty made everything worse. She suffered from depression and was in and out of therapy.

“I felt so detached from my body, and the way it was developing felt hostile to me,” Powell told me. It was classic gender dysphoria, a feeling of discomfort with your sex.

Reading about transgender people online, Powell believed that the reason she didn’t feel comfortable in her body was that she was in the wrong body. Transitioning seemed like the obvious solution. The narrative she had heard and absorbed was that if you don’t transition, you’ll kill yourself.

At 17, desperate to begin hormone therapy, Powell broke the news to her parents. They sent her to a gender specialist to make sure she was serious. In the fall of her senior year of high school, she started cross-sex hormones. She had a double mastectomy the summer before college, then went off as a transgender man named Grayson to Sarah Lawrence College, where she was paired with a male roommate on a men’s floor. At 5-foot-3, she felt she came across as a very effeminate gay man.

At no point during her medical or surgical transition, Powell says, did anyone ask her about the reasons behind her gender dysphoria or her depression. At no point was she asked about her sexual orientation. And at no point was she asked about any previous trauma, and so neither the therapists nor the doctors ever learned that she’d been sexually abused as a child.

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Peace : a lesson from greek mythology.