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Should minors be allowed to go through irreversible gender reassignment procedures?
Minors are too young to make the decision to undergo gender reassignment surgery.
Adulthood is socially defined as starting between 18-21 when the rights and responsibilities of adulthood are conferred. The decision-making parts of the brain (frontal lobes)
continue to develop
until individuals are around 25 years of age.
Minors lack the information to make an informed choice.
Minors may feel like they should undergo medical procedures because they have to conform to society's expectations of being one gender or another.
Some doctors warn that adolescents can
become intensely focused on their immediate desires
at the potential cost of long-term impacts.
Some minors end up changing their minds.
lack the emotional maturity
to make such a permanent life changing decision.
Not all people reach their development milestones at the same age. Some minors have
sufficiently advanced maturity
at an earlier age and are capable of making these decisions.
Children are only allowed to undergo irreversible medical procedures if they
meet strict criteria
, including a significant amount of supporting documentation from doctors, therapists, and nurses, which supports their ability to give consent.
is a criterion used by health care professionals in determining whether or not a child is able to meaningfully consent to a medical procedure. This is frequently used for consenting to procedures such as immunisation, and so could be expanded for use in gender reassignment procedures.