The New Gender Paradigm
From a medical point of view, Regret is known as misdiagnosis. In normal medicine, a physician takes a medical history, does a physical exam, and requests x-rays & blood tests. They make a diagnosis based on the results, and offer the treatment dictated by that diagnosis. If the diagnosis is correct, the patient gets better. If the diagnosis is wrong, the patient won't get better. ...And the doctor with suffer a malpractice suit. ...Both doctor and patient will be Regretters.
Mystery Box Diagnosis
WPATH diagnosis doesn't work that way. Supposedly, transsexuals -- the people who benefit from transitioning -- are people who don't "conform" to society's gender stereotypes. Unfortunately, there are lots of other "gender non-conformers" also. And there's no way to separate transsexual from non-transsexual non-conformers. Supposedly there are no signs, traits or tests that might differentiate one from the other.
The only solution is to subject all of the non-conformers to a series of ordeals. Some non-conformers will be cured by the first test -- they're not true transsexuals. A few more will be cured by the second. More non-transsexuals. ...And so on until the final test, which is hormones & surgery. THEY are the transsexuals. Hopefully all Regretters will have been screened out before then.
If the unthinkable happened and a Regretter did get through, it would show the need for more difficult ordeals.
According to WPATH, only 6-23% of the all non-conformers end up being Truly Transsexual. The other 94% were rescued from a fate worse than death by the intrepid psychiatric gatekeepers.
That's how the system works in theory. In reality, the process begins with harassment trying to force them to be the wrong gender. Bruised & bloody, they go to the library or the internet to find out what's wrong with them. Why are they being harassed?
Most likely, the popular media will inform them that they've been "transgendered". That is, they need hormones & surgery -- which may or may not be true.
So they show up at the local Gender Clinic, where a psychiatrist explains the whole complex process. In response, the patient angrily demands immediate access to hormones & surgery. The doctor-patient relationship quickly becomes a battle. With every step, the patient is more adamant that they need hormones & surgery. NOW! (which may or may not be true).
And the psychiatrist becomes more determined to deny the patient access to healthcare.
Fed up, the patient will go doctor shopping until they find someone willing to give them what they demand -- which may or may not be in their best interest. Self-diagnosis often leads to Regret.
The Treatment Portal
A "Regretter" is someone who thinks they're transgender. So they take hormones and undergo surgery. ...And suddenly they realize it was all a big mistake! They're not transgender after all! And now they Regret the hormones and the surgery. But it's too late! Their life has been irrevocably ruined.
The "experts" at WPATH maintain that Regret is the worst outcome imaginable. Every paragraph in their Standards of Care for transgender patients has been meticulously designed to screen out Regretters -- that means gatekeepers, multiple psych consults, denial of healthcare for children, insurmountable obstacles, and so on. According to the "experts", it would be better to injure hundreds of transgender patients rather than let ONE Regretter slip through:
“The Task Force placed a very high value on avoiding harm from hormone treatment to individuals who have conditions other than Gender Identity Disorder [ie,transsexuality] and placed a low value on any potential benefit these persons believe they may derive from hormone treatment.”
A "regretter" is someone with a diagnosis "other than gender identity disorder" -- quoting the Endocrine Society. What might that diagnosis be?
Who knows?! The instant a person gives up their demand for hormones & surgery, the gender "experts" are finished with them. They're labeled "normal" and sent back into mainstream society.
According to studies, most of those rescued souls turn out to be gay. Many others are androgynous -- individuals who have a mixture of male & female gender traits. Androgynous people don't benefit from genital surgery, although they may need removal of hair and breast tissue.
However, many of the people who surrender under the WPATH endurance trials are actually transsexual. ...They give up because they have run out of resources, or perhaps from sheer exhaustion. Remember that the WPATH SOC's primary goal is to make people give up their treatment -- not to diagnose or help them. A great deal of pressure is applied to achieve that goal -- including psychological distortion ("brainwashing") and physical harassment.
A transsexual may feel relief once the WPATH coercion is over (Type 2 Distress), but Type 1 Distress returns in full force. All too soon, they will regret Regretting.
A History of Regret
During the 1960's & 1970's, mental health professionals were absolutely certain that they could "assign a gender" to anyone they wanted. It seemed to be the perfect solution to the intersex problem: Since intersexuals were born with both male and female biologic characteristics, they must also have a confused gender. The obvious solution was for the doctors to intervene at an early stage -- Surgery gave the newborn female genitals. The parents were told the baby was a girl, insuring that he'd grow up in a pink bedroom play with Barbie Dolls.
Unfortunately, the theory was wrong. Every one of the babies knew instinctively they were male. Gender isn't a "social construct" and can't be "assigned". It's irrevocably determined in the first few weeks of fetal development.
(For more details about the human experiments, see HERE.)
When the parents found out about the secret surgeries, they were furious. Scores of malpractice suits followed, and most doctors decided to get out of the "gender assignment" business. That fear of failure crossed over to the transsexual treatment arena: If surgeons couldn't "assign a gender" to a "gender-confused" intersexual, how could they ever dream of "assigning a gender" to a "biologically normal male"???
Most urologists stopped doing genital surgery on intersexuals and similarly refused to do genital surgery on transsexuals. That refusal led to an outcry from the transsexual population. So WPATH gingerly set up very strict criteria for "re-assigning a gender" to "biologically normal males" (ie, transsexuals). From the intersex experience, they expected large numbers of "Regretters", so top priority was given to protecting the docs from malpractice suits while eliminating anyone who looked slightly suspicious.
This is how Norman Spack MD at Boston Children's Hospital explained the situation:
"Criticism by [intersexual surgery patients] of their earlier treatment made pediatric endocrinologists and urologists defensive, and many questioned their ability to make decisions about these infants. Endocrinologists were even more reluctant to wade into the murkier waters of gender identity disorder, particularly when it was regarded as a psychiatric condition. Most hoped that the patients would remain in psychiatric care until they grew old enough to be treated by internal medicine."
-- The Transgender Child (Cleis Press, 2008) p xi
Once again, notice that the welfare & safety of the trans individual isn't a consideration. ...Especially since Puberty Denial became the method of choice for passing the buck.
Unfortunately, the WPATH professionals had completely missed the point about gender: Even in intersexuals, gender has been irrevocably established at birth. So genital surgery & attempted feminization during childhood couldn't change the child's gender. Likewise, transsexual females were born with an unalterable female gender, in spite of what their genitals might look like. Transsexuals didn't "change their gender" -- they wanted back to return to the gender role that had been established prior to birth.
In the end, gender "experts" have clung desperately to their "social construct" and "gender assignment" mythology. And WPATH continues its paranoid search for non-existent "Regretters".
The mystery box approach to diagnosis actually increases the likelihood of a Regrettable outcome. In reality, transsexuals are distinctly different from crossdressers and androgynous people. And "non-conforming" isn't a factor.
In most cases, the diagnosis of transsexuality is simple and reliable. A person is either transsexual or they're not. Transsexuality is present at birth and continues throughout life. It's impossible to change genders.
Unfortunately, common gender mythology imagines that gender is nebulous and fluid. Any person might "claim a gender" one day, and change their mind the next. "Non-conformers" might rebel one day, then become model obedient citizens the next. In an indefinite universe, "transsexuality" and the desire for hormones & surgery is merely a state of mind -- an abnormal one, at that. Diagnosis & treatment sort of measures how fixed that state of mind is. ...If that state of mind is even slightly malleable, the individual is a potential Regretter.
In addition, diagnosis by endurance is frustrating for the patient, and leads to doctor-patient conflict. Once the conflict begins, both sides are more interested in getting what they want by any means possible. Accurate diagnosis is no longer a consideration. Ultimately the patient will "win" -- they'll find someone from the black market, or someone who is less legitimate -- willing to do any procedure as long as they get paid.
After almost 50 years of working with gender patients, you'd think that WPATH "experts" would have figured out how to identify transsexuals. ...Unless their real goal is to avoid responsibility for all decisions that are made.
For example, use of the term "Regret" instead of "misdiagnosis" subtly shifts liability from the doctor to the patient. "Misdiagnosis" states clearly that the doctor screwed up. "Regret" means that the patient made a choice, but now they've changed their mind. The doctor was merely an innocent bystander. It's the patient's own fault -- they'll just have to live with it.
Other methods of avoiding responsibility include waiting until the legal age of majority and using lengthy consent forms.