Catholic Benefits Association | July 25, 2023
Original article can be viewed HERE
Thinking Ahead to Pastoral Care for those De-transitioning
As we await the final ruling from HHS on the new Section 1557 mandates that were proposed back in August of 2022, I’ve had some time to sift through the layers of government regulation and new standards of care that surround the push for transgender medicine and related gender affirming care.
While several aspects stuck out to me as careless and dangerous…ie. the failed cost analysis and the cost impact to health plans or the removal of age requirements for dangerous treatment of puberty blocking hormones and irreversible surgeries in children and adolescents, the one group that trans-related medicine seems to fail immediately is those who wish to de-transition.
De-Transitioning Stories Are Prevalent
As de-transition stories become more prevalent throughout the world, we are beginning to see what many feared from the beginning would happen. Stories of political and advocacy medicine and the pressures to transition from peers, online influencers, and from trusted medical professionals and adults.
Dangers of False Information
Stories like that of Cloe Cole, who’s medical doctors “falsely informed Chloe and her parents that Chloe’s gender dysphoria would not resolve unless Chloe socially and medical [sic] transitioned to appear more like a male”. As a result, Chole underwent “puberty blockers, off-label cross-sex hormone treatment, and a double mastectomy” between the ages of 13-17 years old.
Chloe has now “filed a notice of intent to sue against three doctors along with the Permanente Medical Group and the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan for “perform[ing], supervis[ing], and/or advis[ing] transgender hormone therapy and surgical intervention” as a breach of standard of care on a minor.
“The Way God Made Us” – A Transition Back to Birth Sex
Or British actor, singer, and social influencer, Ole London, who after visiting a Catholic Church and starting to read the Bible, realized “that changing his appearance was not important – what was important was on the inside.”
Ole, who announced to his fans, that he was de-transitioning back to “living as a man”, those who once celebrated his transition to a woman, experienced “immense hatred” from many of the same group. Ole has been very active in calling out the “hypocrisy of his detractors”.
In a Catholic News Agency interview, Ole shared that he would like to seek Baptism in the United States and that he wants to “…try and spread this message of self-acceptance, [that] we are the way God made us. Let’s accept that. Let’s help them realize that.”
“Castrated by Doctors”
Or a more recent story of Kobe (real name withheld for privacy) who mutilated himself at the guidance of his psychiatrist and online older trans adults. Some of these adult resources advising him to “play the suicide card” to get chemical interventions. His medical team also “glamorized” sexual reassignment surgery (SRS) to further encourage him through the process.
Kobe was put on puberty blockers at 13, estrogen at 16, and had castrative surgery at 19. He discusses how he felt on the estrogen as having “constant brain fog” and was “psychotic at one point”.
Kobe also discusses how the hormones led him “toward some really dangerous eating disorder behaviors” due to the drug effects to his metabolism.
New Standards Support Only One Side
It was in these stories and in reviewing the current landscape of government health benefit mandates and the standards of care set forth by the supposed “medical” experts in trans-related medicine, the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), that both HHS and trans-activist group WPATH appear disinterested in medical support for the entire continuum of care for transgender services.
In fact, WPATH’s own “Standard of Care” document, prohibits the counseling to align with patient’s biology. In fact, the guidance is “…against offering reparative and conversion therapy aimed at trying to change a person’s gender and lived gender expression to become more congruent with the sex assigned at birth.”
Much like the post-Roe response of woke corporations allowing or paying for abortion travel, time off, and related employee benefits, it would appear that these groups are only interested in one-sided care. They are all too eager to support transitioning from birth sex to the opposite sex, but you will not receive mandated benefits coverage or services if you want to de-transition.
Their response? More Gender Affirming Care. More surgery to help you believe that this is who you should be.
A Catholic Response
After Roe was overturned and corporations began revamping their employee benefit offerings in support of abortion, Catholic and Christian organizations looked to the Catholic Benefits Assocation (CBA) for an alternative response by offering more family and life-affirming benefits to support their employee population.
CBA’s Director of HR Consultative Services, Mary Beth Barry, released a blog article sharing thoughts and ideas of how Catholic employers can response.
As we consider the next area of life-affirming care and care for the individual as God created them, detransitioning care should be a focus considering the multi-dimensional challenges facing this marginalized group.
If the followers, fans, corporate equality leaders, our government and even the trans-activist group setting the “standards of care” for transgender individuals are not supporting the reversal of these mutilating and harming services, who will be? If the Catholic Church is the field hospital and infirmary for all, will we be prepared to catch and support those like Chloe, Ole, and Kobe? What does that support look like? What is our pastoral response?
While we await a final ruling from HHS which likely will once again strike against the foundation of our faith, perhaps we should begin in forming our own response, because the physical and mental health suffering exists today. De-transitioning individuals are alone in reversing course. How will we respond?
A good start is aligning with the true mission of Catholic Health Care as stated by the USCCB Committee on Doctrine in the March 2023 publication of the Doctrinal Note on the Moral Limits to Technological Manipulation of the Human Body, “The mission of Catholic health care services is nothing less than to carry on the healing ministry of Jesus, to provide healing at every level, physical, mental, and spiritual.”
Our response should also echo Ole’s reading of the Bible story of Jesus and the leper. To step in close and heal through the love and healing power of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. To go above and beyond in ensuring restoration of the physical, intellectual, emotional, and Spiritual health of those who choose to de-transition back to who God created them to be.
As we look to further unpack the new USCCB resource on Transgender Services, Catholic employers should aim to think innovatively, creating or discovering new resources for this group and to love them deeply. They are struggling to find someone who cares.
Regarding a pastoral response to gender identity, I liked how Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield in Illinois stated his thoughts with Catholic News Service by saying, “It is of paramount importance to handle such situations with gentle and compassionate pastoral skill and concern. All forms of discrimination and harsh treatment must be strongly resisted and corrected.” Notice how no one was left out.
If you’d like to read other de-transitioning stories, check out a global site I found online at