I’m aware that I’ve written a few posts recently about the deaths of young trans women, largely from suicide. Let’s look into that a little bit.
There’s a famous statistic that says 41% of trans people have attempted suicide at some point in their life. It’s from a US study of trans people, and the number is often used online by anti-trans bigots urging us to “join the 41%”. There’s quite a lot of literature on this subject now, and if you do a literature review you’ll find that the numbers are pretty consistent: globally, 32% to 50% of trans people say they’ve attempted suicide at least once. The number of people with ideation, which is when you make plans but don’t go through with them, is higher still.
That’s much, much higher than in the wider population. Sticking with the US, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that 4.3% of Americans said they had had suicidal thoughts in the previous year.
So. For the population as a whole, suicidal ideation affects 4.3%. For the trans population, more than 41%.
What’s the difference? Here’s a clue. In the latest study of trans and non-binary youth in the US, the study found that people who underwent affirming healthcare – such as hormone therapy – had a lower rate of suicidal ideation than the wider population: just 3.5%.
What’s the difference between 3.5% and 41%? Support. Many older trans people have encountered all kinds of issues around being trans: staying in the closet for years, difficulties in obtaining healthcare, societal disapproval, familial ostracism, loneliness, discrimination, hate speech, sexual assault… you know the kind of thing.
But when trans people are supported, given the healthcare they need and the support they deserve, they get happier.
From the study:
During the study period, appearance congruence, positive affect, and life satisfaction increased, and depression and anxiety symptoms decreased. Increases in appearance congruence were associated with concurrent increases in positive affect and life satisfaction and decreases in depression and anxiety symptoms.
Healthcare in “making people better” shocker.
The problem isn’t who we are. It’s how so many of us are treated because of who we are. That isn’t an us problem. That’s a you problem (or if you’re one of the good people, a them problem). Trying to “eliminate transgenderism”, or just turning a blind eye to the destruction of our rights and healthcare by those who want to, has a body count.