When you stray from the clear and universally marked path of nature, you find yourself lost, disoriented and in troubling places you never bargained for.
Chest-feeding. Apparently it’s a thing now.
Just when you thought the whole gender-redefinition thing couldn’t get wackier, we get this (content warning). The picture says it all. Actually, it screams madness. We are expected to see this person as brave. She is not. And “Evan” is not just an isolated sideshow. She is part of a disturbing new movement.
The Atlantic recently featured the pioneering work of a woman from Winnipeg who asks that we believe her to be a man named Trevor MacDonald. She had her breasts removed under the misguided belief that “chest masculinization surgery”, as they call it, would make her feel like more of the man she believes herself to be. Curiously though, Trevor left her uterus untouched, which allowed her to become a mother — or “child-bearing person” if you prefer.
Trevor tells of being absolutely and unexpectedly overwhelmed by a tidal wave of desire to nurse her newborn child even though she now had a man chest. She doesn’t seem to realize that her experience is evidence that gender might go deeper than one’s self-perception, external body parts or clothing choices. It’s a remarkably deep thing, making sex and gender not so easily divorced. Earlier this summer, Trevor proudly became an official breastfeeding counseling leader for the Le Leche League. Seriously. They changed their policy to include “men” like Trevor who have lactating breasts:
We recognize that any breastfeeding parent, regardless of whether they self-identify as a mother or father, should be — and is now — welcome to investigate LLL Leadership. There are other prerequisites that a potential Leader needs to satisfy, but being a woman isn't one of them.
When you start making stuff up, the possibilities are endless. This news may sound great for Trevor and her personal journey of self-discovery, but consider the anxious new mothers who she’ll serve. Dealing with the rough seas of post-partum hormones and fragile body confidence issues, they must watch their instructor open her man-shirt, attach her child to her little man chest as “he” eagerly instructs them in how to nurse. All of her comforting “Don’t worry ladies, I’m pretty much just like you!” assurances will do little to ease the terrible awkwardness being forced upon them. These ladies can neither complain nor demonstrate their discomfort. To even eye-roll at the absurdity will be judged as raw trans-bigotry and require sharp punishment of these new moms.
Trevor and Evan are not alone. Trevor published a study this summer in the online journal BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth examining the experiences 22 “transmasculine” individuals and their experiences with bearing children, lactation, chest-feeding and their unanticipated feelings of gender dysphoria in the midst of it all. What “man” wouldn’t as his milk comes in? All of his research subjects still have their uteruses and vaginas, thus their births. Trevor explains her peers’ maternity in a gnostically disembodied way: “Some transmasculine individuals choose to engage their bodies to carry a pregnancy and birth a baby.”
However, most had had their breasts removed through chest masculinization surgery because these apparently caused them great anxiety, while their womanly reproductive organs did not. Cory, one of Trevor’s subjects, explained her very tortured post-trans relationship with her woman breasts: “I was just like ‘Get them off me. I don’t care what you do. Just get them off me’”, as if they were a nasty slug or spider. But after the birth of her baby, her feelings changed. Cory explained how useful her previously despised breasts would be, given her powerful instinctual desire to nurse her baby. Even though her baby could only latch on to her stingy little man breasts for a few seconds, she euphorically explained, “…it was glorious. It was like … I got to feel that at least – I got to experience that little bit and I’ll never forget it.” What she hated so deeply, she now sadly missed when she became a mom. Cory is not describing a non-gendered experience. It was the world-altering power and experience of motherhood, something only another mother can even come close to understanding. This real-life experience of Cory’s is the proof that imagining you’re a man does little to change the facts.
One interview subject reported never having experienced such a deep depression while being pregnant and having her female breasts. She (Felix) confesses, “I literally had nightmares of cutting my chest off with scissors.” This should strike our hearts with compassionate sadness for what was going inside Felix’s soul, her tragic desire to do violence to her own body. Hers is far from an “identity” issue. It is a form of body-loathing which is not really about the body. This is reflected in Peter’s comments:
I’d hated [my female body] my whole life and here was just this amazing thing that my chest could do that you know I sort of felt like that’s maybe the reason why I had been given this body.
Nine of the twenty-two participants reported no increased feelings of gender dysphoria at being pregnant “men”. They did however report experiencing significant distress, as Trevor reports, “when others misgendered them [as women] as a result of their pregnancies…” Sadly, this is very telling as well. It is not so much about one’s actual essence as a male or female and their coming to terms with it, but other’s acceptance of the way these individuals feel about themselves. “I can only feel good about myself if you feel good about and affirm me.”
This explains why things like the bathroom and locker-room politics are not so much about practicality but public acceptance and affirmation. It is not enough to provide a special facility for their special needs as we do for the disabled, even while their human value is no less than anyone else’s. The whole system must be changed for the trans person’s sense of community affirmation. Everyone else must adjust accordingly.
Many of these women were deeply surprised to find their seemingly male chests were actually still milk-producing female breasts. Apparently not all their milk buds were removed. Emmett says:
I was huge…so that was dysphoric and I didn’t know what to do with it. I was producing a ton of milk. …I had no way to stop the milk from leaking through my chest. I had no appropriate…male clothes for nursing.
Why the deep hang-up with breasts when a uterus seems quite natural for the transmasculine? Freud might have something to say about this.
Much of the folly comes down to this. When you stray from the clear and universally marked path of nature, confidently claiming that new paths are just as good, it can be fun and exciting for a while. But the inevitability you find yourself lost, disoriented and in troubling places you never bargained for. Chest-feeding is marking such a trail. Many LGBT activists and their supporters are no doubt creeped out by it. They didn’t anticipate their support for the “Ts” would take them here. But this is what happens with lies. They mutate. We do well to recognize chest-feeding as merely the latest in a series of unanticipated backfires on those who thought they were doing good in their service to trans-politics.
- It’s why Facebook gave up in futility in trying to capture all the different gender identities users could choose from in a pull down menu. Their 58 different choices still excluded many self-identities, revealing the silliness of the whole thing. Their fix? Just let users write in their own subjective identities and be done with it.
- It’s why Target is now spending 20 million dollars to expand its bathroom options in an effort to lure back its boycotting soccer moms whose first desire is safety for their children. But the damage is done. Their initial move to degender their bathrooms sought to solve a problem that didn’t really exist. This solution hopes to solve a problem that can’t be fixed.
- It’s why the Obama Administration has found school districts rebelling and Federal judges blocking its nationwide directive providing any boy the full right to enter your daughter’s gym locker room and shower right next to her. This one is not going to end pretty for the Administration.
- It’s why the Le Leche League will soon enough find out their new policy has created serious problems they never anticipated: strongly alienating their primary client base.
Stay tuned folks. This maddening spectacle is just beginning. The silver lining is that it will eventually collapse under the sizable weight of its own deception. Let’s pray it happens soon.