Nov. 10, 2020

#18 Dr. Debra Soh- The End of Gender


Dr. Debra Soh is a neuroscientist that specializes in sex, gender, and sexual orientation. She has been published in  Harper's Magazine, The LA Times, The Wall Street Journal, Men's Magazine, and had a weekly column for Playboy.com

Dr. Soh recently released her book The End of Gender which has caused quite a stir. You can purchase her book https://www.simonandschuster.com/books/The-End-of-Gender/Debra-Soh/9781982132514

or https://www.amazon.com/dp/1982132515 and stay up to date with her work and follow her on social https://www.drdebrasoh.com/

Support the show (http://patreon.com/candicehorbacz)

Transcript

0 (4s): Hello, everybody that you're listening to. Chatting with Candice I'm your host, Candace. We're back before we get started on this week's episode, if you want to support the podcast, you can go to Chatting with candice.com and you can sign up for our Patrion account, where you get early access to episodes bonus content, live AMHS shout outs, or you can hit the link that says, buy me coffee. Both things help me to continue podcasting, improve the quality of the podcast and get really cool guests on hopefully in person one day. Now, before I introduce this week's guest who I'm very excited about, I wanted to share a discount code with you for one of my favorite products that I'm using right now. So three out of four adults are dehydrated. 0 (46s): We're not getting enough water. We don't have enough time. Liquid Ivy hydrates you three times faster in three times more effectively, they have amazing flavors. My favorite one is lemon lime. They also have a couple specialty products. One is their defense pack, which has the vitamin D and zinc, which has a really good going into flu season as well as their sleep multiplier, which definitely works. I take it almost every single night. So if you want to save 25%, go to the liquid-ivy.com and enter code Candice to save 25%. I'll also include the link in the show notes again, it's liquid-ivy.com use code Candace for 25% off. 0 (1m 27s): Now that's all for my plugs this week. We have dr. Debra SOH when she agreed to come onto the podcast. I fan girl a little bit. I couldn't believe it I've been following her for a while. She recently came out with the book The End of Gender, which has caused quite a stir. So dr. Debra SOH is a neuroscientist who specializes in gender sex and sexual orientation. She received her doctorate from York university in Toronto, and she's worked in academic research for 11 years. Her writing has appeared in the globe and mail, which is based in Toronto Harper's magazine The Wall Street Journal and The LA Times scientific America, Playboy, and many more. 0 (2m 10s): Dr. Debra SOH is a huge advocate for free speech. She is constantly fighting censorship, especially with this new book coming out. So the biggest ways that you can support her are following her on social media. Her Twitter is at Dr Debra SOH and its S O N H. I'll make sure to include that in the show notes or visiting her website, dr. Debra soh.com and I'm of course purchasing her book The End of Gender. You can get it on Amazon Barnes and noble her website, basically anywhere you buy books. So without further ado, dr. Debra SOH right. So today we have a doctor Debra SOH joining the podcast. 0 (2m 54s): I'm so excited to have you here. So you're a sexologist, a neuroscientist, a journalist and author, and a podcaster. You have a very long resume. If you want to kinda give the listeners a little bit of your background and your expertise. 1 (3m 9s): Sure. So I'm a former academic sex researcher. And the last two years of my PhD, I questioned whether I wanted to stay in academia or do something else. I noticed that the climate had changed quite a bit. So I did eventually decided to leave academia due to the political climate. I work now as a science journalist, I write a monthly column for the globe and mail, which is Canada's national newspaper. And now we have a new book out, as you mentioned, is called The End of Gender with Simon and Schuster. Awesome. 0 (3m 34s): So I loved the dedication at the beginning of your book, that was to everyone that flock to you on Twitter. I was like, I feel like we're kindled spirits. It would be something I totally did. So I thought that was cheeky. And I really enjoyed that part. I was like, this is going to be a very good book. So I wanted to start with some of the fun topics that a lot of listeners I know will really enjoy. So a chapter that I really liked was the sex and dating and a common theme that you had throughout the book is that we don't have to be identical to be treated equal, which I think is such a powerful message. And I think more people need to really be driving that home. So instead of arguing for the fact that we are identical, like you can still respect one another, even though there are a biological differences. 0 (4m 15s): Exactly. So you mentioned that we're doing a way with gender norms when it comes to dating. How have you seen that kind of affect people that are dating, whether they're younger millennials or people that are just getting back into the pool after say like divorce or what has it? 1 (4m 30s): I would say the biggest trend is that women are being told that we need to be, as you mentioned the same as men to be treated as equals and that this applies to dating courtship sex. And I really want to emphasize, you know, I definitely am in favor of gender equality, but at the same time, I don't think it's sexist to acknowledge that there are differences on average between men and women. I don't think that that necessarily means that every woman is exactly the same and all men are the same or that there aren't some differences or that you should make any sort of judgments about individual people, but from a sexological perspective, which is a scientific study of sex and gender, it's not factually accurate to pretend as though men and women have the same sexual systems. 1 (5m 10s): So I talked in the book about how for women, especially if we pretend as the wear the same as men, something like casual sex, do I see a lot of young women really almost pushing themselves to try and enjoy it when they don't. And a lot of young women especially go into a casual sex situation, hoping that the guy, if they're Street that the guy is going to like them, that he's going to want a relationship before a guy, if he's going into a casual sex situation, he really does just want sex. When he says he just wants sex, he just wants sex. He is not thinking about our relationship. He is not thinking about love. And I think a lot of women end up hurt in some cases, because they're going in with different expectations. And the communication is not clear in that way. Also. So with the book I really emphasized a science-based approach, you know, for myself, I used to really identify as a hardcore feminist. 1 (5m 56s): I would, again, very much in favor, gender equality, but I find mainstream feminism has done a disservice in some ways too. I think what's helpful too, women and men, and especially some aspects of the science denial that the movement is promoting. I'm not a fan of that, but especially evolutionary psychology. I talk a lot about that in the chapter and it has such a bad name and I don't think it needs to. And I think if you're open to evolutionary psychology and its explanations, it can actually be very enlightening, especially when it comes to understanding your partner and yourself. 0 (6m 28s): So with the new wave of feminism, I used to identify as one as well, but we have like such a similar story. I feel like when I was in college, I took a gender and women's study class and I got super deep into that. And they made you feel all these emotions. And I was like, there's this wage gap. And I want to be treated as equal on a date and it makes you a little bit aggressive. So I find that a lot of men have trouble navigating the dating pool now because they don't want to offend anyone. So a point that you brought up in the book that is like, who pays on the first date and what is the science behind that? 1 (7m 2s): So I'm sure some people would be upset by me saying this. And this is not to say that women are not independent, empowered. I think you can definitely be an independent woman, be strong. The all of these things. But I do think on a first date, a man should pay. And I've said this to some of my, especially my male friends and in the book I read about this and they were absolutely horrified at me. And they treat me as though I'm sexist to say that, but for women, we want to see an investment. I mean, I think if you really do just want sex from someone, then it probably doesn't matter so much. But if you want a relationship with any sort of affection from your partner, you want some signs that he has the ability to care about you and that he's thinking about you. So that's a very small way that he can do that. 1 (7m 43s): And on the flip side, you know, I've got men's rights, activists who get really mad at me and say that I'm somehow promoting female chauvinism or women being gold diggers. I do think it's really fair that in our society, women get such a bad rap for essentially having standards in that way. I don't think that it makes you a gold Digger to want to see a man invest in you. I don't think it makes you high maintenance either to want to see that your male partner is going to do nice things for you. 0 (8m 8s): Oh, and I loved that you tied women looking at financial status is a form of security in the same sense that men tend to date like a little bit younger because of fertility. So there is a biological underlying reason for both of these behaviors, but for some reason, it's okay that a man wants to date a younger woman, but it's not okay that a woman seeks out financial security. So I thought that was really important. And I mean, true feminism, like that should make you excited, right? Like if there's something wrong with a man pain for the day, again, I feel like there needs to be an investment on both partners. Otherwise it is just sex and you're probably not going on a date anyways, in my opinion. 1 (8m 46s): Right? And the underlying, I do think there is some sexism to that though, women, we are held to a different standard in that way, the, whatever our priorities are seen as somehow not helpful to us, or that is unfair for us to have those priorities. And instead of because the conversation is saying, Oh, men and women are identical. So if women do value of these things is because they have the wrong priorities. I think the conversation should be women should be allowed to have the priorities they want. And why is it looked down upon when we do that? 0 (9m 14s): Did you see that one tweet that was going viral? It was, I want to say by one of the UN feminist or women empowerment groups, and it was talking about holding a door open for a woman and what it really means that how it can be seen as offensive and how dare you open the door for us, because where a strong and independent women and I have hands and I can open my own door. So now you see all these men that are like, well, what do I do? Like, I want to be a gentlemen, but I certainly don't want to get yelled at. So what's your advice for a man if he finds himself in an interaction or maybe a date with someone who is one of these like more progressive feminists, and he's just trying to be authentically nice and she'll for us, 1 (9m 53s): Hey guys, and women should just be who you are. And I've said to my male friends, because they'll say to me, I hold the door open for when I'll pull the show up for them, they get upset. Some of them get offended and they stopped doing that in their future dates. And I think if you're a genuine kind person, you're going to want to do nice things for your partner, regardless of your sex. So if you're on a date with someone and you do something with good intentions to try and make them feel comfortable or feel wanted and they respond negatively, then I think that tells you something about someone, because it's one thing. If she says, you know, that's really unnecessary. You don't need to do that. Then it's not a big deal, but if she gets upset at you or angry, you have to wonder what else is going on. Why is that the case? 1 (10m 33s): Because I agree. Yes. As women, we are capable of holding the door open for ourselves. We don't need men to do any of these things, but I don't think it has to be seen as belittling or patronizing necessarily. 0 (10m 44s): I couldn't agree more. Another topic I wanted to touch on and we already briefly did was the casual sex. So in your experience, I guess, based off of the data, would you say that the majority of women are benefiting from this new casual sex movement? Where is it negatively impacting their mental wellbeing or? 1 (11m 4s): Well, the research shows that on average young women are not enjoying casual sex, as much as men and afterwards, they actually do feel worse. So say something like if you are going out to a rebound, men will feel better after women will feel worse. And in many cases, the women will self-report feeling used. And the men will self-report feeling as though they had used the women. And so if you go into it and you say evolutionary psychology is sexist, misogynistic outdated, doesn't matter. Then I think the women will sit there and internalize that and not understand why do you feel this way? If you understand the data you can say to yourself, well, I could go out and have a rebound. Maybe I'll feel better, but there is a good chance I might not. 1 (11m 44s): So maybe I can think about what else I can do to feel better. Instead of doing this thing in that society tells me I'm supposed to do where that I'm supposed to be like, and then ultimately not feeling great after. So why you think there is a big push 0 (11m 55s): From mainstream media? Like, especially the music videos tend to be very sexually aggressive. Obviously pornography is very sexually aggressive nowadays. And I feel like there's definitely some women that enjoy that and that thrive in being able to be sexually open. But I would agree that most women aren't really comfortable in that space. So why do you kind of see that push happening if it's not beneficial? 1 (12m 20s): Well, I mean, I love sexy music videos. Don't get me wrong, but I do think it's somehow fall asleep and tied into female empowerment. And SOH as a woman, if you are on top of your game and you're a bad Beata or whatever, I try not to swear, but then you're going to be really sexual and own your sexuality. And I'm totally in favor that, you know, and I studied kinky sex for my PhD, but at the same time, I just think there can be shades of gray. And I think if you, as a woman want to be more modest, that's okay too. That doesn't mean you're not empowered. I almost feel like women are being told if they're not this way. If they're not hyper-sexualized that they're somehow not fully living in their life or not fully enlightened. And in some ways that also in chapter five, I talk about how young women are starting to transition or identify as male or a third gender because they don't want to be hyper-sexualized. 1 (13m 6s): So that I think is one thing, if you're in adults or if you're of an age where you can discern this information in a more critical way, but I am a bit concerned because this message is being really pushed to young women, to be very sexual. And for some who are uncomfortable with that, then they're not really sure what to make of that information and what to do with it. 0 (13m 24s): I think it has an effect on both like the men and women. SOH like the women feel like they have to kind of over-perform when they're with their partner and then the men tend to expect to this overperformance. So then you have both people that are living in this expectation and no one is actually having that Men and I feel like that's in a lead to a lot of disappointment when it comes to the bedroom. So for me, I would say like, communication is huge, but also knowing that it is entertainment at the end of the day. So just because that's like one extreme, that doesn't mean that's actually the normal for either. Gender. Absolutely. Yeah. So let's get in to like the meat of the book. It's very controversial. I love that. You're the best selling on Amazon right now. I think that's amazing. Thank you. 0 (14m 5s): So it's going to sound crazy, but somehow sex and gender have become so confusing that most people don't know what either of those things mean. So can you define the difference between sex and gender? 1 (14m 17s): Right. So biological sex is defined by gametes, which are a mature reproductive cells. So there are eggs and sperm, and then Gender has to do with how we feel in relation to our biological sex. So for 99% of us, we identify as our birth sex or a biological sex. And then roughly 1% of people are transgender or intersex. So, and they may identify as the opposite sex and then gender expression relates to how we express our gender identity. So whether it's through mannerisms, our physical appearance, like hair, makeup, clothing, things like that. So 0 (14m 53s): Where did the conversation start to take a turn that both of these things are a spectrum 1 (14m 58s): Started with Gender being a social construct, which it is not with the book. I have nine different myths and I go through each myth from a science-based perspective to explain why they're not true. So gender is a social construct. This idea is pervasive now, and it's reported and it's not challenged even though it's completely not scientifically factual. And then from there, it has morphed into gender as a spectrum. And then from there, I see how it's morphed into biological sex is now a spectrum. So I think it's the same trend of activists who maybe initially had good intentions wanting to advocate for the rights of certain groups. 1 (15m 38s): So to say, for people who are different that's okay. You know, but I think we can do that. We don't have to misrepresent what science says. So Gender being a spectrum. I mean, it's binary because for, as I said, 99% of us are gender is the same as our biological sex. And even if not someone who is trans, we identify as the opposite sex, which is still within the concept of gender being a binary. There are no intermediate gametes. There's nothing in between eggs or sperm. And for intersex people, the vast majority of them produce either one gamut or the other, whether they're infertile, but most intersex people want to live as one sex or the other. They don't want to be somewhere in the middle anyway. So it's another case of activists going. 1 (16m 20s): And I think really speaking of inappropriately for a particular communities and then with biological sex, it's the same thing. But this idea of wanting to promote acceptance for people that are different, which again, it doesn't hold up when you actually look at the science, but it's crazy because you will see actual scientific experts saying that now saying that biological sex is a spectrum and also that biological sex, we can't even say that term anymore. That term is considered offensive. 0 (16m 45s): Yeah. So we started looking at schools and we'd just had a baby SOH he's 10 months that we were looking at early schools to get them into. And you probably wouldn't be surprised who the audience would probably be surprised to know that they don't even teach biology anymore. The human biology and a lot of the classes. And I was like, well, why are we not raising doctors anymore? Isn't that a necessary class. If someone wants to go into that field and it's just too controversial, so they just pull it and I see that doing way more harm than good. And I understand the point to people trying to be inclusive and it may be starting in a good place, but I don't think that the solution is to pull science and say science doesn't exist anymore. So we have to find that middle ground where everyone can live in the same reality that I think these pillars of reality are important, especially when raising children. 0 (17m 30s): So for clarification, intersex people, is that the same as non binary? Or would you say non binary is like the expression of a person's they're not related? No, 1 (17m 40s): They are different terms. So non binary is someone who identifies as either both genders or neither. So a common term would be gender fluid, age, gender by gender. I mean, in the book, I go through a whole bunch of different ones. And then with intersex it's people whose sex will not be categorized in a typical way. So they have characteristics of both sexes. So they may appear physically to be one sex, but may have the internal organs of the other sex. 0 (18m 8s): So when there's a case, is it, they're a very small percentage people that have both gametes. And then if so, is that part of the argument for a third sex or sex being fluid or a spectrum? 1 (18m 22s): The funny thing is when people try to advocate for this, they never actually looked at the science SOH in the scientific research. There has been quite literally one case study of someone who had the capacity to produce both gametes, but he did not even produce both at the same time. It was one or the other. So still not a spectrum in my mind because that's one of two different things. So, but when people argue for this, I feel it's more important. What their emphasis is on is the end goal. So whatever the social change they want to evoke is they will find a way to just push for that. They won't even necessarily look at the scientific research, which to me, I don't know how you can argue about it or say that it's invalid. 1 (19m 2s): If you don't even know what it says, but this is really where we are in legitimate scientists. Now. I mean, this was part of the, the reason why I left is a legitimate scientists. Can't do their job. And like your saying in the education system, if they're not teaching biology anymore, it's this really weird ideology of a disinterest in science and a disinterest in facts, because I think they're seen as dangerous for whatever reason, because people are afraid that the information will be misused, but I don't understand what they think is going to take its place. Because like you said, if you're going to Dr, you can teach doctors activism. That's an at the end of the day, not going to be useful in terms of looking after their patients health. So I always wanna emphasize, you know, I'm very much in favor of advocating for equal rights for trans people, for intersex people, for anyone who's different for anyone who's gender atypical. 1 (19m 48s): I do support transitioning and adults. We can talk a bit about why I am skeptical of transitioning and children, but I think that's really important to be able to say, we can do both. We can be pro-science and also in favor of these legal protections and being respectful. 0 (20m 2s): So has science kind of always been politicized or weaponized, or is this something that's kind of new with this activism movement? Because in my lifetime, I've never seen so many professionals being censored. And to me that's really scary because if you send it to the people at the top, then they don't have the freedom to teach everyone below them. And then you're just kind of indoctrinating this whole new wave of people. So is this something new? And if not, how do we get back to, 1 (20m 31s): I think this is the first time it's so prevalent, but within sex research, definitely this has been an undercurrent since the very beginning of time, because sex research is seen as very controversial sex researchers get it from both sides of the political LPs, all sides of the political Island, but it's historically been from the right. And that's not to say that all right-leaning people haven't issue with human sexuality research, but more recently it's coming from the left. And I think because most sex researchers, including myself, are liberals. When it's coming from your own side, it's almost as though you don't see it as seriously, or you're not as sure how to fight it because you're also dealing with it coming from the other side. And that seems like a greater threat. 1 (21m 12s): So I think that's part of why it's gotten so much momentum because all of the denial around gender, and I would say human sexuality more broadly, what we see on both sides. I think when you look at sex more broadly, but with Gender is predominantly coming from progressives. And I think the reason has gotten to this point is because people do not recognize that people are so busy with their research. They didn't recognize what a problem this was going to become. And then also there is this larger history between sex researchers and transgender activists where not all trans activists are aggressive and mean, and trying to ruin people's reputations in lives. But there has been a history. There were, if a sexologist speaks out about the research in a way that upsets trans activists, they really pay a very awful price for it. 1 (21m 55s): So that's also been a reason why most sexologists say, I just don't want to touch anything around this. So then what you have instead are the so-called experts who say the things that activists want them to say, and they get a lot of air time and they get a lot of attention and that's why their narratives get promoted so widely and ended up being what is considered, I guess, mainstream how the public thinks about these issues because they don't here the other side. 0 (22m 21s): So are these universities and private research companies, do they not defend the researchers when there's actual data behind it? Or do they kind of throw their hands up in the air and just let them up to continue? 1 (22m 33s): No, they capitulate and they basically people get fired. The institution will distance themselves from the researcher, the actual research papers in the, in the book, I talk about how number of papers get pulled after being published, which should never happen. The peer review process is very rigorous, especially in sex research. If a study is going to be published and go out to the public, it goes through a very intense process of other experts looking at it, vetting it, giving feedback, saying you need to make these changes. So by the time it goes out, it's pretty good to go. And then when an activist gets upset, though, what happens is the Journal editors freak out essentially and say, okay, we don't want this bad press. We don't people think we're bad people. 1 (23m 14s): So then they will either put the paper under review again, which is completely unnecessary, but has only really to a piece, the activists are, in some cases they will actually retract the paper entirely. So then what a scientist says is why am I going to put myself through the torture? Essentially, I'm trying to get funding to do a study, do all the work of collecting my data, analyzing it, publishing this, going through the process of peer review, which you can take a year, sometimes longer, depending on how stringent the reviewers are. And then you're the only to be ripped apart in mobbed, social media, have your institution leave you to your own devices and then have your work called all kinds of names. So again, that's why this is becoming such a huge problem. 1 (23m 55s): And I don't blame researchers because as I said, they're so busy. They're teaching is really, really difficult, competitive to be in academia today, but it's really sad the direction that things have gone in. Well, that's why 0 (24m 7s): I think it's so awesome what you're doing, because I feel like once people see that you can stand up to the mob, if you will, and survive and get attention and have a bestselling book that maybe they can too. So I feel like we always need an example before a lot of people are brave enough to make a difference. So hopefully that's like the direction everything's starts to move in because I don't see it sustainable the way that it is now. So you mentioned in the book, I wrote this down, but I don't know if I completely nailed it. That children can't be transsexual because they don't have the maturity yet. So it's a gender dysphoria. Is that correct? 1 (24m 42s): Yeah. So gender dysphoria is the medical condition of feeling more like the opposite sex than you're both the sex. And it's very pervasive. It's very distressing for children. I don't like when people use the term transgender children, which you will see a lot because transgender is a political label and children don't have the mental capacity to align themselves with politics. So what I see that as is activist groups basically designating these children as part of their agenda, which is what troubles me about it. 0 (25m 12s): I've gone into a bit of a hole with your work with Abigail's work, just on the huge spike that we're seeing in kids that are identifying as the opposite sex and even more scary taking hormone blockers are doing some very invasive surgeries. And I think it's called the rapid onset gender dysphoria. So I guess to give an example, and one of our schools here, we had this kid come out in kindergarten and they had like a trans party for him to announce that he was what his gender was. And I think, again, it all comes from good intentions, right? Like everyone wants this kid to feel welcomed and loved and accepted. But I feel like when you start giving attention for just announcing what your Gender is and all these other kids that might just be a typical, they're like, well, what do I have to do to get my party? 0 (26m 1s): And then you start seeing them maybe identifying as a boy, if you're a biological boy, is that good enough? So then you have to find something else that's a little bit more unique to get the attention. So you mentioned like healthy ways of a parent and caregivers to kind of support this child. And then other ways that maybe are not the best, especially when they're so young. So can you give some examples of healthy ways? If you have a child that is saying that they're the opposite sex, or they don't really feel comfortable in their body and they don't really know what's going on. 1 (26m 32s): Right. So I always want to say, I don't do clinical work anymore, but from conversations I've had with my colleagues who are clinicians, they really emphasize, well, I also really emphasize just loving child, you know, accepting your child. However they are, whatever they're interested in. It doesn't matter who their friends are or how they want to dress. I think that's the most important thing I would say it's best to wait until puberty for these children to make a decision about whether they do want to transition even socially because the social transition is associated with going on and medically transitioning. So the way social transitioning is presented is as though this is completely harmless and there are no consequences. And socially transitioning is if a child is born, male say, wants to identify as a girl for parents and medical professionals and teachers to encourage that and to refer to her as female, she'll take on a new name, maybe go her hair out, dress like a girl 'cause from a scientific perspective. 1 (27m 29s): All of the studies show that the vast majority of kids with gender dysphoria outgrow those feelings by puberty. They're more likely to grow up to be gay in adulthood and not be transgender. So it doesn't make sense for them to transition when they're very young. I mean, I see kids as young as three going to Gender clinics, which to me is completely inappropriate. I think it's one thing as parents to be concerned, that's totally understandable. And to want to seek out medical or professional care, but at three, children's say all kinds of things. And it just blows my mind that what they say is being taken at face value at the age of three, in some cases, when we wouldn't trust a three-year-old in pretty much anything else that they tell us, they can even pick their bedtime are or food that capability's not there yet. 1 (28m 10s): No. So yeah, I would say just love your child unconditionally. I would encourage parents to seek out a medical professional or a mental health professional, a therapist, but the problem is so much of therapy has been taken over by activism now, especially when it comes to gender. Because if you do not affirm a child, you can potentially lose your license. We have conversion therapy bands in the us and Canadian in the us. It's in 20 States in Canada, there is a bill that is going to be passed into law that will criminalize any therapeutic interventions that seek to understand a child's gender identity instead of essentially affirming them. So the thing is conversion therapy for sexual orientation. 1 (28m 52s): I do not support, I want to be very clear about that because it doesn't work that historically conversion therapy has referred to people who are gay or bisexual and they want to become Street. So that does not work. It's not ethical. Gender identity is different from sexual orientation in that in children, especially, it can change over time as I mentioned, but the way it's been framed by activists is they've lumped gender identity in with sexual orientation and call it both forms of therapy. Now conversion therapy, which has not accurate. So people are understandably scared off of wanting to question this because they don't want to be seen as bigoted or hateful what I find ironic. So I'm straight, but I grew up in the gay community. If you take a child who is gender non-conforming or gender dysphoric. 1 (29m 34s): So you've a little boy who is very feminine. He is likely going to grow up to be a gay man. But if he transitions to female, when she grows up, she going to be attracted to men and appear to be a straight woman. So I think on some level, these parents who are really excited about a child who is transitioning, it can be a form of homophobia because they don't want to have a gay child. And we know is talking about this. It's so hard for parents to get an accurate assessment done now. And outside of that, I would just say, yeah, like allow your kid to do what they want and trust your parental instincts. Because I think parents are especially being told that they're bad parents in chapter five is dedicated entirely to all the advice I would give to parents because I've had a lot of parents reach out to me over the years. 1 (30m 15s): I feel it's very difficult for me to give them advice because I don't know they're child. And also I don't feel it's really appropriate for me to tell them what to do, but Alyssa, all the citations in there, this is such a common thing. I mean, it's crazy to me that so many people reach out to me telling me that either this is their child or they know a child like this. And it's just important that these kids are getting the support they need and that they don't jump to quickly to something that may not help them. 0 (30m 40s): So is the term called dissidents the assistance assistance. So that number is pretty alarming for me as a parent. So if my kid maybe had gender dysphoria and they were very young, seeing that number would certainly help make my decision to not do anything that was irreversible because more often than not, he's like you said, going to end up just being gay and not actually being trans. So is the activist community and the professional community, are they not aware of this number or are they just ignoring it and saying that it's false? 1 (31m 17s): They say it's a pseudo science. I mean, I talk about this publicly all the time. I mean, I wrote basically a book dedicated to this very subject to some extent, and they will call us transphobic. They'll say that we are hateful. And I think for some people it's coming from a good place because they have bought the idea that gender identity it's the same as sexual orientation. So in the way that people used to say to gay people, you're not really gay. You'll change your mind. You'll grow out of it. Here's some therapy to make you feel differently, which I don't agree with at all. I've always want to say that, but I think that's why people are really reluctant to criticize the Gender side of things or to believe that someone might change their mind about their gender, because that seems hateful to them. 1 (31m 60s): Or that seems somehow like a protocol in validating someone's experience. So I think that's where a lot of it is coming from. And I think for other people, activism today helps you get ahead in your career. So if you say the right things, this is one of those big talking points. If you are in favor of the gender spectrum for children and children, transitioning, people are going to think that you are such an accepting loving person. It doesn't matter what the science says. 0 (32m 26s): How did the activists such a powerful grip on education and how do we start to maybe loosen the grip that they do have? Because, so I have a friend that lives in California and she was to me, part of what they now call the anti-bullying education that they're teaching kindergartners, that there's, I think 16 or 17 genders and they're fluid and Harvard released study that says, you know, you can literally change your Gender hour by hour if you want. So when you teach that to someone with such a young mind, right, like very Hi data state SOH kids in a high data state until they're seven, which means they're highly susceptible to influence. 0 (33m 8s): So with that being the case, you might have a kid that is very typical. They are biological boy, identify as a boy. There's no dissidents there, but when you start introducing these very wild and unfounded ideas, I feel like you can take what it is. A typical boy, having a typical boy experience, and maybe we start to confuse them. So I think it's really important that we start to try to backpedal here and like loosen that grip. Do you see that happening? And then do you have any advice? Are there, I guess, legislations that people can get involved with? Like where do we go as parents? 1 (33m 42s): I don't see it getting better right now. Unfortunately, I think is going to get much worse. But I do think that there will be a turning point at some point, because you can only push lies for so long before the truth does come out and before people do start to wisen up. And I think the vast majority of people know that a lot of this is nonsensical, but because they've been told it's hateful to question it, they don't say anything. And in many cases you do run the risk of losing your job or being shamed. Well, mobbed on social media is shamed. Even having people in your personal life question, the kind of person you are, if you go against this. So I do think at some point, I think when the kids start D transitioning is all the kids who have transitioned or who are identifying as a different gender, or they're getting surgery now to be non binary. 1 (34m 30s): When they start saying this was a mistake that people are going to start to realize that there's a problem. I think also when the lawsuits eventually start happening, but to your point as to why this is so prevalent in education, it has to come down to, to some extent of the fact that in academia, you have the scientific disciplines and then you have these other disciplines that are very much anti-scientific. And they're very much about building up the world in the way they want it to be. Or again, it's about the social change they want to evoke. And it really doesn't matter what facts stand in the way. They're going to tear that down in pursuit of that goal. And they have managed to work that into education. I think it was very smart of them on some level, because children do not have the cognitive maturity, especially young children to differentiate between what makes sense and what doesn't, they'll just believe what their teacher is telling them. 1 (35m 22s): I do think parents though, I will tell them to have faith because if you raise your child to be critically minded, I think that's a key thing. And also telling them explicitly, there are things that you're say with that particular curriculum saying there are certain things that your teacher will probably tell you that are not true. And let's talk about that because as you said in California, they've put it in the anti-bullying curriculum so that you can't opt out of it versus if it were considered sex ed. So I'm very much in favor of sex education. I'm just not in favor of this weird gender ideology being promoted alongside of it because it's not accurate 0 (35m 57s): Well, and especially at such a young age, I think anyone that's a parent should be pretty alarmed just based off of spikes that you're seeing. I think it was in the UK, right? That it was like a three, a hundred percent spike with 4,000, 4,000. Wow. Okay. Even more of biological females, late identifying as male, and then actually going under the knife for surgeries or hormonal treatments. And being told that a lot of these things are reversible. And to my understanding is not like there's a very serious consequence. Once you start making that leap, is that correct? 1 (36m 30s): Yeah. Testosterone. So many of these with rapid onset, gender dysphoria, these born girls, born female, they identify as male very suddenly often out of the blue. And what we're seeing in the UK is now a hundreds of these young women are now coming out and the transitioning is saying they identify as female again. And that transitioning didn't help them for a lot of them. They had other issues, mental health issues like eating, just eating disorders, self harming. A lot of them are on the autism spectrum. A lot of them are also a lesbian and they say that they experience homophobia and they were not comfortable with the fact that they're gay. So these are all issues that need to be talked about and not masked over. And so, as I was saying with hormonal interventions, you know, some of them will leave permanent side effects and young kids even are undergoing these interventions, double mastectomies. 1 (37m 20s): I've seen as young as age 12 and puberty blockers as young as age eight. So it's really frightening and worrisome. And I just wish that mental health professionals could do their jobs. Because if you could do a proper assessment with these kids and determine what is really leading them to feel unhappy about being female, because in a lot of cases, a lot of them just say that they didn't feel that they were a typical girly girl. And so, because now they're being told, if you're not a typical feminine woman, that you must be something else, you must be a man or any other gender, but female, or they don't like stereotypes that are often come along with being female. So why not abandon ship and identify something else so that you don't have to deal with that. 1 (38m 2s): And we're not having that conversation. So that's why I feel it's really important for someone like myself to be so vocal about it because I am in the position to do so. If I were tied to an academic institution, there is no way to be able to say any of the things that I say now. 0 (38m 15s): Definitely not. Definitely not. Yeah. I think we almost have less tolerance now with the way that things are turning out. Like, we can't say that that you can be a feminine man and that's okay. And you can be a masculine girl and that's okay. And being gay is fine, but we're avoiding all of those conversations. We're just saying, no, look, you must be this other thing because those things are not acceptable. So I don't know how that script got flipped because I feel like maybe the last, at least for my perspective, maybe 10 years ago, it was pretty tolerant. And then it's like this new wave of a very aggressive activists that everyone thinks are the majority. So when you label something and you identify as a group and you start to speak for a whole group, I think that's very problematic because not everyone shares your experience or your thoughts. 0 (39m 4s): And I think that those people that have these connections to reality is still a need to get a little bit louder. I think that's, what's great about buck angel is he's out there and he's fighting the good fight and saying, 1 (39m 17s): Can you just fantastic. Yeah. We actually 0 (39m 20s): Have an episode that we're filming in a few weeks. I'm super excited. They can just go after one of their own to write, he's getting it from all ends. So it's like, why can't we still say science is real because by denying science and by having these crazy narratives that you're pushing on children, and that's where people get really upset, you're actually going to make people start being hateful right. To this group. So I think no one likes being deceived. And if you just kind of buried down on this data or start going after people's kids, it's just like not the healthiest approach for everyone to be equal and have equal rights. So I'm glad that he is doing it. I hope more people start standing up to the mob. 0 (40m 0s): So I think it's really important for some reason, like, I think until it negatively affects you or someone that you care about, you kind of just to take your head in the sand and just hope for it to pass. 1 (40m 8s): Yeah. I love buck. I did interview him for the book and I mean, he gets called transphobic. So it's totally insane. I do not think that most trans activists actually represent most trans people. And I have a lot of trans people who have reached out to me over the years, thanking me for what I say and telling me the things that activists are asking for are not things that I would ever ask for. And they're actually quite mortified that this is what transactive is a very vocal, prominent activists say that the community wants. So I think it's important for people to know that because when the activist start going too far and asking for things that are completely nonsensical or really unreasonable for the public to know that is not what actual trans people are. 1 (40m 49s): Like, there is a concern there. I think the people are saying to me, they're afraid that the public is going to look at activists and think that that is what they're like. And they're not, 0 (40m 57s): I think it's in a totally backfire because again, I think you brought up several good points throughout the book, which were a lot of the reasons that people are shying away from the science is because they don't want it to be weaponized against them, but you have to have that connection to reality. So I have to ask myself, what is their end goal? 'cause to me, some of it seems like a pretty malicious, but I don't know if that's the case. I haven't like personally met them. I've just seen the intensity online. I don't understand the end goal. Like can't, we all agree that children are immature. Like we can't even get a tattoo. You can't trust me to pick the proper tattoo for my body under 18. A dash would probably be higher too, but under 18 because it's permanent, but yet we're going to let you go do these invasive surgeries and these hormone treatments. 0 (41m 44s): And if I'm not mistaken, the suicide rate is still really alarming, even post-transition. So that's the case as a parent, the whole argument of like, do you want a happy sun or a dead doctor? Which to me is just disgusting that a professional let's say that to a parent. It's an arguable because that statistic is still there, right? The suicide rate is still very high. So if you had the best interest for these people that were going through this really tough time and trying to figure out their body, then you wouldn't push them to something. When there's no evidence that it's beneficial for the masses, especially at a young age. And I think it's very important to say, I think an adult decided to transition is wonderful. 0 (42m 25s): If that's what they want to do, I'm all for that. I'm all for adults doing what they want to do, but when it comes to kids, I think it's just a very slippery slope again, just because of that emotional maturity is on. 1 (42m 36s): I totally hear you with the parents. My sense is because they're being told this by the medical professionals, that if they don't allow their child to transition, the child is going to attempt suicide. It really is emotional blackmail because I think any parent would feel they don't have a choice in that situation. Yeah. I detest the fact that that is what's being done to these parents because they really feel they are doing what's right for their children. And also with a suicide statistics. SOH that statistic because this is such a contentious issue. That statistic, I written the book about how it's been used by both sides to further their particular narrative. And so the authors of that study say that they feel because as you mentioned, SOH the rate of suicide post-transition remains 20 times higher than what you would find in the general population. 1 (43m 25s): So that's what the study says. And so some people will say, that's a sign that transition didn't come soon enough. And other people will say that transition doesn't work. So I'm not saying that you necessarily have any sort of ideological interpretation here, but just to clarify for your audience, that I just think it's important that we're able to look at it on a case-by-case basis for individuals, as you said, for adults who are able to make these kinds of decisions, if they can sit down with a professional and determined, what is this about? Will transitioning make me feel better? That's one thing. But I would say even for adults, it's a really difficult now because therapists are very much just anyone who wants to transition. They feel that they have to facilitate that. 0 (44m 4s): Oh man, I guess if you find yourself in one of these 20 States or soon to be Canada, where you can't have a therapist that does anything, except for, to accept what you go in and saying, and just push you to transition in some sort of way, whether it's socially or medically, what resources besides your book, would you tell someone to read what if they themselves are going through this? Or if they have a child that is going through this, or if they notice like educators that are pushing this onto other children, 1 (44m 32s): That what are some healthy resources in the book? I do list all the citations so you can take it to the administration. And when they are teaching your kids, nonsensical things like biological sex is a spectrum to a point to the particular studies and say, actually, that's not factually true because otherwise, I mean, I've had colleagues reach out to me saying they're teaching in the school. I go meet with the principal and they pull up these activist resources. And I have nothing basically to use, to argue with them because they're saying the quote unquote newest science backs, whatever they're saying. So I would say for parents is also really important to be aware of what's being taught in, in the classroom because in a lot of cases, what is being documented formally in the curriculum is not necessarily what the teachers are teaching the kids. 1 (45m 18s): And it's amazing what kids are being taught. If you ask them vs what is being said, they're being taught. And I would say, just don't feel about ultimately that's your child, it's your right. If you want to take your child out of the class, don't feel bad doing so don't feel pressured to go along with this just because of their parents are doing it. And I would say to be optimistic that if you're a child has good, critical thinking skills that they're going to be okay, it's not going to be the end of the world, even though it might seem like that, because it's really concerning to me when parents do send me some of the materials that are being taught in the classroom, and I'm thinking, I don't know how they get away with teaching this because it's basically like pulled from thin air. 1 (46m 1s): None of that makes sense. Yeah. I couldn't agree more. Well, I love the work that you're doing. I hope that you keep it up and hopefully inspire others to join your cause. Thank you so much for joining the podcast. Do you wanna tell the listeners where they can follow you where they can buy her book, how they can support you? Yes. So I am on Twitter at Dr Debra SOH I'm on Instagram at dr. Debra w so if you'd like to see the nine myths that are in The End of Gender they're on the set on my website, which is dr. Debra soh.com/book. And you can get The End of Gender on Amazon Barnes and noble everywhere you buy books. Awesome. Well, thank you again. Thank you so much. 0 (46m 40s): That's it for this week's episode. I hope you enjoyed it. If you have the time, please rate and review and you can always hit subscribe to stay up-to-date with our latest episodes. I hope to have you back.