A New Study Suggests Puberty Blockers Spike Youth Suicide

A new report is contradicting the left’s claim that easier access to puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones will reduce the risk of suicide among young people. As always, facts don’t seem to matter as long, as there’s a good emotional argument the left can exploit.

The report by the Heritage Foundation was authored by Senior Research Fellow Dr. Jay Greene and analyzes existing studies about the relationship between treatment and suicide prevention.

The study uses what Greene says is a “superior research design” and found “that easing access to puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones by minors without parental consent increases suicide rates.”

The focus of the study compares states that allow puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones without parental consent and the states that don’t allow them. Greene took those states and compared the suicide rates between the ages of 12 to 23 in each state to determine if there is a significant difference.

Greene’s data ranged from 1999 to 2000, the dates that the age group would have entered puberty and had the treatments available under the category of “gender-related treatment.”

Greene said, “If making it easier for minors to access puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones is protective against suicide, one should expect the frequency of youth suicide to be lower in states that have a provision allowing minors to get these drugs without parental consent after 2010.”

However, he found that states “allowing minors to access routine health care without parental consent” had a significant increase in suicide among young adults.

Greene continued to challenge the left’s narrative, saying, “To believe that easier access to puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones are not the cause of elevated suicide risk in those states, one would have to be able to imagine other medical interventions that only became widely available after 2010 and would only affect young people.”

The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) and the Endocrine Society are claiming that these treatments are fully reversible and safe, but there haven’t been any large-scale randomized studies to determine their safety and efficacy. They also claim that access to “gender-affirming” healthcare would reduce suicide risk.

Greene said that because the randomized studies weren’t required for puberty blockers and sex hormones, the handful of studies “use inferior correlational research designs.” Greene also concluded that the “relationship between adolescent cross-sex interventions and later mental health outcomes, including suicide risk, does not provide convincing evidence.”

Greene continued, “States should also adopt parental bills of rights that affirm that parents have primary responsibility for their children’s education and health, and that require schools to receive permission from parents before administering health services to students, including medication and gender-related counseling to students under age 18.”