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13 comments

[–] ProxyMusic 7 points Edited

The fine print says the kids who are questioning their gender identity at age 11 have entered puberty 2 months earlier than their peers.

More to the point, the paper is useless because it lumps together kids of both sexes as thought puberty in males and females occurs at the same chronological age - and as though 11 year-old boys and girls nowadays are experiencing gender identity confusion, distress and doubt in equal numbers/at equal rates. When researchers in the Netherlands know full well that neither is the case.

Girls on average start puberty 2 years before boys; the normal age range for puberty to begin in girls is 8 to 13. A majority of 11-year-old girls have already begun puberty; for many girls at 11, puberty is quite far along - lots of girls at 11 have developed breasts and are menstruating. By contrast, a majority of 11 year old boys are just starting puberty and are at Tanner Stage 2 or they haven't begun puberty at all yet.

Girls who begin undergoing the physical and emotional changes of puberty of adolescence at the totally normal ages 9, 10, 11, 12 find their lives, their fundamental sense of self, and their sense of feeling at ease with and at home in their bodies totally upended by very real major physical processes that are extremely disruptive, restricting and discombobulating to young girls - menstruation, menstrual pain, the mood changes of the premenstrual phase, the hassle of having to wear bras, having to contend with breasts that jiggle and bounce, sometimes painfully, when engaging in the physical exercise girls used to be able to do unhindered just a few months before.

On top of that, girls undergoing puberty of adolescence are subjected to sexual harassment, groping and unwanted sexual attention and advances from boys and men.

So of course girls in puberty of adolescence are going to have issues over "gender identity." Gender identity is just the latest way girls are being taught to express and act out the normal adolescent angst and distress that girls always have felt about the physical changes, sexual objectification, sexual abuse, diminished social status and closing-off off of life options that girls experience in puberty.

The problem here isn't puberty of adolescence per se. It's the failure of parents, educators and society to adequately prepare girls for puberty long before it starts so they aren't totally thrown by it. And it's the failure of parents, educators and society to take into account all the many "man-made" reasons that at this particular juncture in human history, life is made extremely difficult, unnecessarily painful and often deeply distressing and shameful for girls undergoing puberty of adolescence.

Two quick thoughts:

The classic correlation and causation. Perhaps entering puberty first among their peers subjects then to things that make them not want to have those puberty signs.

Also, I remembering reading many years ago that children who watch porn enter puberty sooner.

And a third factor can explain the relationship: early life trauma and mental health struggles can accelerate puberty as well.

Victorians believed that reading romance novels too young would speed up puberty. The believed the feelings would "excite" the reproductive system. I think that as with other issues of correlation vs causation... kids who are already developing are more likely to have an interest in sex/romance/relationships/what have you. But it's not something you can really study, no one is going to apply to expose a bunch of pre-pubsecent kids to porn to really find out.

And kids who access real pornography early (romance novels are harmless compared to that ...) probably have a chaotic upbringing ... I think I read somewhere that girls without stable father figures enter puberty sooner, too.

So I don't guess the hen and egg question will be solved anytime soon.

But it certainly is possible that stress (and having social contagion gender worries is stress) causes early puberty. That is a known phenomenon in plants, at least. (Well, earlier fruiting, that is, puberty isn't really a thing in plants.)

I was a fat kid, and girls who are overweight tend to hit puberty earlier... which for years had me thinking it was all my fault. There is something to body fat percentage riggering puberty but some families just tend towards earlier or later start dates. There are so many variables. But lower income tends to be associated with higher body weight, and "chaotic upbringing" is often tied to poverty... there are so, so many things. In and of itself, stress should DELAY childbearing ability - but few things in life are as cut and dried as one might hope.

[–] GCRadFem 7 points

News at 11: girls that go through puberty early are faced with the reality of sexism and being a female and all that it entails in society. Body changes including periods and breast development. It all was a smack in the face to me at age 10 when I got my period. Even at that young age, it looked like my brothers got off much easier than I did. Who wouldn’t question gender construct at that point?

[–] NoDayForADo 4 points Edited

WTAF? I have also seen something about girls who question their gender are more likely to be overweight. They have it so bass-akwards it's not even funny. Girls who struggle to fit in - for whatever reason - are going top grapple with WHY they don't fit in - and these days, it's very easy to conclude that hating your body means you were meant to be the opposite sex.

I hit puberty early. It wreaked havok with my mental health for years. I did everything in my power to beat back the changes that came upon me. I absolutely would have fallen down the trans trap today. Today I know that early puberty is a known risk factor for depression and other issues. But my mental health issues did not CAUSE my early puberty.

[+] [Deleted] 2 points

The gender mythologists have totally won when people who call themselves scientists use the term "birth-assigned sex."