Age 8 And Wanting A Sex Change Review
AGE 8 AND WANTING A SEX CHANGE: Monday 19th October, Channel 4, 9pm ALERT ME
God only knows what those bible-wielding red-necks in Utah would make of this blasphemous programme.
Parents allowing their children to switch sexes before their tenth birthday? Sixteen-year-old cheerleaders with pig-tails and penises? There would be an angry mob of yokels waving flaming torches before you could say ‘right-wing fundamentalists’.
Fortunately the nutters in bible-belt don’t run America anymore and sufferers of gender dysphoria (a condition where adults or children believe they are trapped in the body of the wrong sex) are treated slightly better than they were a couple of decades ago.
This programme tracks the progress of a handful of young girls and boys who want to be young boys and girls – the results are interesting and often very touching. In tellyland, the subject of sex-change is not a particularly original one, but the hook of this documentary lies solidly in the age of the kids featured.
Adults who dismiss children like this as incapable of knowing their mind at such a tender age will be in for a big (body)shock. There can be no argument that any of these parents have been guilty of indulging a ‘phase’ that their kids have gone through as some people contest – these are children that know what they want.
Josie Romero becomes totally unmanageable if anyone refers to her in a male context and such is her mental anguish that we hear how her mother discovered her on the verge of mutilating her own penis.
As you can imagine, situations like this can be extremely upsetting for parents and bullying is a big problem for the children involved, but the results that can be achieved through hormone treatment if commenced at an early stage are quite remarkable.
Consequently, this programme surely highlights a phenomena that is set to rise in the years to come as small-minded barriers are (hopefully) broken further down and treatment for the condition improves.