Planned Parenthood, the sexual healthcare organization that receives federal grants to teach sex education in schools, has implemented transgender friendly curricula into their parental guides on teaching their children about sex.
The nonprofit is telling parents that rather than draw a hard line between physical genitalia and personal identity, parents should introduce their children to sex in far more nuanced terms. An excerpt from the organization’s parental guidelines reads:
“While the most simple answer is that girls have vulvas and boys have penises/testicles, that answer isn’t true for every boy and girl. Boy, girl, man, and woman are words that describe gender identity, and some people with the gender identities “boy” or “man” have vulvas, and some with the gender identity “girl” or “woman” have penises/testicles. Your genitals don’t make you a boy or a girl.
You can say that most girls have vulvas and most girls have penises or testicles. You may want to emphasize that it doesn’t matter too much what parts someone has–that doesn’t tell you much about them. But you can make that decision based on your values and how you plan to talk with your kid about gender as they grow up.”
As transgender acceptance has grown mainstream, Planned Parenthood’s guidelines on how parents should respond to their children’s questions about gender identity have changed drastically.
Older guidelines read as follows:
Q. What’s that? (pointing to a woman’s breast, or other body parts.)
A. That’s a breast. Women have breasts. Men don’t. Would you like to know anything else about that?
Q. How come I have a penis and you don’t?
A. Boys have penises and girls have vulvas. I’m a woman — a girl who is all grown up — so I have a vulva instead of a penis. And you’re a boy, so you have a penis instead of a vulva.
But, currently, the abortion clinic’s guidelines are far less specific and encourage caution when making concrete assertions to your child:
“Be thoughtful about your choices when it comes to books, toys, entertainment, clothes, decorations, and other things you surround your little one with. These choices have an influence on your kid’s understanding of gender and what it means. Putting daughters in pink princess rooms and boys in blue sports rooms before they’re old enough to choose for themselves can send the message that they have to like certain things because of their gender.”
They advise to avoid “gender stereotypes”:
When you pick a new toy or book, or sign your kid up for a new activity, ask yourself these questions to help you think through whether or not you’re reinforcing gender stereotypes.
Would I feel comfortable with this choice if my kid wasn’t the gender they are? Why or why not?
Does this choice expand or limit my kid’s expectations of who they could grow up to be?
Does my kid generally like things like this already, or am I picking this just because of their gender?
But, while remaining open about gender identity is necessary to the extent you don’t want to alienate your child if they are dealing with real issues, pediatric organizations warn feeding into gender fluidity too much can have the adverse effect of compounding a child’s mental health issues.
The American College of Pediatricians states that:
No one is born with a gender. Everyone is born with a biological sex. Gender (an awareness and sense of oneself as male or female) is a sociological and psychological concept; not an objective biological one…
A person’s belief that he or she is something they are not is, at best, a sign of confused thinking. When an otherwise healthy biological boy believes he is a girl, or an otherwise healthy biological girl believes she is a boy, an objective psychological problem exists that lies in the mind not the body, and it should be treated as such. These children suffer from gender dysphoria. Gender Dysphoria (GD), formerly listed as Gender Identity Disorder (GID), is a recognized mental disorder in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association…
They continue: “According to the DSM-V, as many as 98% of gender confused boys and 88% of gender confused girls eventually accept their biological sex after naturally passing through puberty. Conditioning children into believing that a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse.”
Planned Parenthood made headlines last month after the organization announced it was sending superhero capes to senators who voted against the GOP’s “skinny repeal” bill.
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