|Action||Unprofessional conduct - conversion therapy|
|Comment Period||Ends 8/7/2019|
To Whom It May Concern:
I am a transgender woman and a lesbian. When I was around nine I told my mother that I thought my life would be better if I was a girl. My mom told me people like that aren't happy. I don't know what she meant, but I knew I should not try to be a girl. I wanted to be happy, but I was only really happy for myself when I was wearing girls clothes. I didn't know why. As I grew up I had times when I didn't dress as a woman, but I would keep coming back to it, and, always, in the back of my mind, my true gender was screaming at me, "you're a woman". It almost destroyed my marriage. It caused us to separate for six years. I was trying so hard to not be transgender. I tried therapy, years of therapy. I tried 12 step programs. I worked all of the steps in two programs. Still, my gender would be calling to me in the middle of the night telling me I was a woman. When I was 53, my wife and I discussed it, maybe I should try to live my truth. I started my transition. My depression lifted, my type 2 diabetes went into remission, and my high blood pressure went away. There were physical health benefits from living my truth.
Conversion therapy tries to rip a persons gender identity or sexual orientation away from them. It not something that can be removed or changed. It is abusive therapy and will leave deep, lasting emotional scars.
I would prefer someone get the health and mental health benefits of being who they are and loving who they love to the emotional scars that conversion therapy leaves behind.