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Leach: Benjamin's Standards of Care

This article was written by Mark on Leach's site, who is called a "research specialist."

I would say the great majority fall into two distinct categories...(1) those who want SRS to escape from being labeled a homosexual, and (2) those whose transsexuality springs from the same soil as transvestism. After all, the erotic desire to more feminize one's appearance and fashions isn't far removed from the erotic desire to more completely feminize ones body, permanently.

. . .

I am firmly convinced that married transsexuals (those who married as men), who feel they need to change, are suffering from a very heterosexual and male-like, aggressive or testosterone-laden phenomenon; they need more and more visual stimulation to attain their exotic high -- a more sensuous mental movie in which to enact their wildest fantasies.

Due to the boredom they find in their sexual union with their wives, due mainly to their over-sensualized, erotic stimulation and sexual climax from pornography; as well as their overall responsibilities experienced as husbands, their wives simply don't fulfill their sexual longing any more.

So, instead of the stressors of marriage and parenting causing them to seek another partner, as is typical with many non-transsexual men, they try to turn themselves into another partner; or become both parties in the relationship, thereby eliminating the need for the "real-woman." Thus, they attempt to create a new movie to watch, one in which they are an active participant, and one in which they now possess the enviable position of the woman/wife, where they can then play out their newly proscribed gender role, exhibiting the very qualities they have desired in another woman, which their wife doesn't seem to have. Many qualities they project, may not even exist in "normal" people.

I find it impossible to believe that someone would go through all the work to change their sex just because they're horny and bored.  I've heard trans people accused of many things, but being hobbyists is new.  The obvious question is, "Why go through all that work, time, money, rejection, and stress instead of a few minutes with a porno?" And why take estrogen which lowers sex drive and makes masturbation more difficult? This idea has no bearing whatsoever for transmen.  The idea is somewhat similar to autogynephilia, but autogynephilia acknowledges the driving force is inborn, not the result of boredom. Further, what of transexuals who are not married? If they have no issue with adultery, why are they still feeling the way they do?I hate to say it, but Leach's theory of bad parenting makes more sense than this. I am not surprised that Leach still posted it though because he is more interested in lambasting affirmative views of transgenderism than the truth or something consistent.

I am convinced that treatment of heterosexually attracted transsexuals needs to take into account the following factors:

A) Hormones are very damaging psychologically. They dull the masculine libido, and therefore sexual conflicts are buried and become inaccessible to psychotherapy.

As far as libido, libido will reach a level somewhere between the original and an average female's libido. Yet female's sexual conflicts are still accessible to psychotherapy. By this logic, transmen should take hormones because it would supposedly make their sexual conflicts more accessible.

B) Hormones for such transsexuals are a psychological death sentence, which leads to SRS-the physical death sentence; or what Jerry calls "Physician Assisted Suicide.".

By "death" I can only interpret "death." Yet hormones have not shown to impact life expectancy. In fact, they tend to bring them more in line with the sex they identify with (females naturally having a longer life expectancy than males). But even transmen on hormones have shown to defy expectations and live longer because being happy also adds to your life expectancy and trans people on hormones are happier.

C) Sex therapy is indispensable for these transsexuals. After years of people saying it's not about sex, it's about gender...I believe it is terrible to have ignored the erotic/sexual features of transsexuals. Clinicians who have expertise in psychotherapy, are often, unfortunately, poorly prepared in sex therapy. One can go through medical school and a psychiatric residency with no training in human sexuality! One can go through a Ph.D. in clinical psychology with only one course in sexual dysfunctions. This is just terrible; that no one wants to talk about transsexuals' sex/eroticism and that people don't have training in sex therapy specifically.

Is he really so stupid as to confuse sex (vagina and penis) with sex (intercourse)?!  I cannot disagree with promoting more education of any kind, but is Mark consistent? How many sex courses has he taken? Leach has taken zero. Therapists are generally in the business of dealing with issues they haven't had many courses in because any given client can bring up any possible issue. For any issue that comes up, it's their responsibility to find as much education as they need. Of the therapists I have seen, the affirming therapists had much more sexual education than others.

Having said that hormone administration is damaging psychologically to transsexuals, since it dulls the libido, preventing ready access to dealing with conflict, I should then say that the whole "theory" of the "real life test" is a joke, except it's not funny!

People study for tests...people practice for tests...people try to prepare for tests...people cheat on tests! RLT is a sinister joke.

Mark, like Leach, wants us to believe that psychiatrists exist to act as a babysitter or investigative reporter, forcing clients to reveal their nature to make their recommendation. Besides being a false representation of therapists, this is a red herring. Even if the real life test were perfectly accurate, Mark and Leach would still oppose it because they oppose all transitions.

If someone is not having a tough time passing in their birth sex and they have demonstrated measurable success in living in their birth sex, they should not be treated as otherwise. It should also be remembered that transsexuals are unreliable historians and are also known to try to "excuse" or explain their condition by fabricating unfounded physiological underpinnings; much of their ideas and theories coming from the international population of equally deluded peoples; not their own experiences.

If we're talking about Jerry Leach, I could not agree more. I think he has changed the shape of his childhood to fit into his made-up psychological theories.  This is actually human nature, to create stories and explanations for things we do not understand. This is only a problem when our explanations are impossible like Mark and Jerry's. Mark criticizes the international majority, but what does the scientific elite think? Leach openly acknowledges they affirm transgenderism generally. They aren't interested in appealing to the majority or the specialists, only those who happen to agree with them. 

The RLT grew out of the Standards of Care, which we know have little to do with Harry Benjamin. He was a kindly grandfatherly-type of gentleman and medical practitioner, who tried to help those whose gender was problematical. But the Harry Benjamin Standards of Care are not in the least in accord with Harry Benjamin's initial vision.

Harry Benjamin was not directly involved in the founding of even what are called the original standards of care. It was founded by other professionals, many with variant sexual orientations, and now an increasing number of self-serving transsexuals and even transgendered persons.

This is true, but I fail to see his point. He seems to imply that Harry Benjamin does not approve of the Standards or that they are somehow contradictory to his original purpose. Neither is true. Benjamin gave the first prescription of estrogen to a trans person and oversaw many, many more and was the major supporter of SRS. The Standards were given his name in honor of his work which he accepted. Mark's statement is deceptive; he takes a technicality and wants the reader to believe Benjamin was an enemy of transitioning whereas he was our greatest supporter of his age.