No decent person wants to hurt children. Yet as pediatricians and longtime public health practitioners, we’ve both seen how children can be harmed by adults’ poor decisions. Efforts to block gender-affirming care for trans children have been more about politics than about health, and kids are paying the price: More than 90% of LGBTQ+ youths say recent politics has harmed their mental health.
Tragically and predictably, they are experiencing higher rates of depression and suicide. In a 2021 study by The Trevor Project — a nonprofit suicide prevention group that supports LGBTQ+ youth — more than 50% of transgender and nonbinary youths reported that they had considered killing themselves, and 20% had actually tried to do so.