An inconvenient survey: Activists scheme to squelch research on teen social contagion

One might think that purported pediatric gender experts would have a vested interest in investigating all facets of the current worldwide massive increase in kids wanting to chemically and surgically transition to the opposite sex. After all, in most civilized societies, adults want to protect young people and seriously ponder what’s best for them—all of them. Certainly, when it comes to permanent, lifelong medical interventions, most responsible professionals who work with youth would realize that not everyone who wants a treatment is necessarily a good candidate for it; as one bioethicist memorably put it, “a doctor is not a candy seller.

But at least one director of a well known pediatric gender center and national trans activist lobbying group in Portland, OR—a full-grown adult who nevertheless takes to Facebook to brand anyone not fully on board with the organization’s mission as a “TERF ” or “anti-trans hate group” —evidently cannot tolerate a researcher even studying the phenomenon of teens who came quite suddenly to the idea of transgender identity. [Note: All screen captures are from Burleton’s publicly accessible Facebook page.]

burleton on survey

The survey study, “Rapid onset gender dysphoria, social media, and peer groups” (still actively recruiting participants) seeks to better understand, via parent survey, the phenomenon of teenagers who (after never previously expressing gender dysphoria) suddenly announce they are the opposite sex.  Many parents in the 4thWaveNow community have teens who, in many cases, have demanded immediate access to medical transition, with all that entails—cross sex hormones (with concomitant permanent body changes, particularly for biological females), and major surgery, often involving removal of both breasts. Some of these teens changed their minds about transition, while others have not–but all are worth studying in the interests of discovering whether there is (as many of us have observed) a social contagion contributing to the increase in teens (especially teen girls) who express a desire to become the opposite sex.

Wouldn’t any reputable purveyor of a treatment which will change the lives of teenagers forever have even a modicum of intellectual curiosity about what such a survey might reveal? One would think, also, that Jenn Burleton might feel slightly chastened after recently hearing from a detransitioned, former teen client who was unhappy about the fast-track transition that was enabled by TransActive gender counselors. Instead, Burleton (whose Facebook description lists only studying “Resilience at the University of Life“ as professional credentials) would rather  cast aspersions on the MD/MPH conducting the “bogus” study, as well as the organizations and websites (including this one) which have publicized the research effort.

Commenters on Burleton’s post (who were obviously approved by Burleton) go even further, with one intending to deliberately “throw off the statistics” on the survey.

burleton commenters 2.jpg

Burleton obviously approves of the “throw off the statistics” scheme:


If trans activists are so confident that kids as young as 3 or 4 can be legitimately and reliably diagnosed as “transgender” and in dire need of intervention by organizations like TransActive, why would the executive director need to stoop to childish tactics like screaming “TERF” and encouraging Facebook followers to gum up a survey study? What’s the worry? Why wouldn’t someone with such a huge responsibility for the well being of teenagers want to learn more about teens who were simply following a social trend, later changed their minds, or who actually might not be appropriate for treatment?

Burleton’s open hostility and the jeering, sophomoric reaction of the post’s followers lead inexorably to a question: Are some key activists in the forefront of pediatric transition genuinely interested in looking at all the evidence about “trans kids”? Or are they, instead, driven by a desire to shut down any and all inconvenient fact-finding efforts when it comes to promoting drastic medical interventions for other people’s children?

Anyone with a rudimentary understanding of the meaning of a Facebook “like” won’t have much difficulty answering that question.

28 thoughts on “An inconvenient survey: Activists scheme to squelch research on teen social contagion

    • Let the lawsuits begin! Shall be interesting when some of these young people (whose parents and doctors have signed off for lopping off body parts and injecting powerful hormones and blockers, and potentially sterilizing their children permanently), have an awakening that they have been abused by adults and sue the heck out of those people,….maybe then….follow THAT money and this will stop! I truly hope some of these de-transitioned folks will actually follow through with damages.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. You have summed up such an important and disturbing aspect of transgender activism — a deliberate disinterest in evidence that questions any part of the dogma. Of course we should want to know more about this trend. We should also be very interested in any alternative treatments and factors that lead a young person to desist.

    Liked by 6 people

    • There has been a decades long, deliberate and ongoing derail of any real efforts to diagnose or even question sex dysphoria… hence the obfuscatory language of “gender” and it’s being done for the very very simple reason. The very moment a conclusive organic reason, and with it, a diagnostic test is found, it will invalidate the legions of cross dressing men now calling themselves “trans-women” as being anything other than men with a peculiar penchant for playing dress-up!

      Likewise, it will call into question the patriarchal basis behind this current wave of young girls trying to escape the ugly proscribed female gendered roles by their “becoming other than female.”

      Though we are few in number, I’ve known too many transsexuals to say it’s a fad, it’s not, it’s a curse! Fortunately it’s a rare curse, and I dare say, anyone actually afflicted by it has absolutely no issues into research that will point the way to an organic diagnosis, or even a cure!

      Liked by 6 people

  2. Follow the money….as you always say. A trans diagnosis is a cash cow, especially if covered by insurance and/or the government. I read that one plastic surgeon in the UK is booked solid performing SRS on desperate trans trenders now….

    Liked by 4 people

  3. A lot of parallels with young girls and boys joining Isis after social media binging. Pity the two are not being linked. The next generation of parents will be much more restrictive of teenagers private Internet use. I hope.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Yes!!!! I can honestly say I wish I never allowed electronics into my household. It’s been actually so nice lately since all access online has been removed. Little did I know what I needed to inform my child to stay away from… And it wasn’t the pedophiles.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I participated in the online survey and I hope the organizers gather good data – although I was always a bit worried about the reliability of a self-selected sample like this one. At the very least it could potentially be a good gauge of the extent of the problem, and perhaps there are ways that the some of the bias can be adjusted for.

    I did have a concern, though, which now seems to be justified, that responses can and will be fabricated by those who would seek to corrupt the information. I don’t know how – or even if – a researcher could correct for this. I’ve seen this happen before, where people are encouraged to go and “spam” an online survey, for instance.

    What certainly does strike me is the immaturity and essential recklessness of people who would “spam” the survey. Although I am not at all supportive of the “trans agenda,” I’d never even consider going and, for instance, mis-representing myself as a trans person in order to supply false data to a researcher. What I glean from the Burleton comments is that the allegation that the researchers are “anti-trans” grants license to engage in this kind of poor behavior. And, if it were my child who was being “treated” at Burleton’s clinic, I would also wonder at the judgment of any administrator who would advocate for such spamming. This person does not sound like a seasoned, responsible professional – to say the least!

    Liked by 4 people

    • I share your concerns, worriedmom. I also filled out the survey. With honest answers. It is deeply disturbing that others, whose only intention is to destroy the true results, have access to this survey. I hope and pray that the person gathering the research information is astute enough to see through this attempt to botch the survey and silence our voices.

      Liked by 5 people

    • This is my first post but have been following this blog for several months. Unfortunately, I’m dealing with this nightmare with my 16 yr old daughter. I happily participated in the survey. I thought of a slogan and wish it could reach every child & teen: CELEBRATE GENDER DEFIENCE. THERE IS NO RIGHT OR WRONG WAY TO BE FEMALE. THERE IS NO RIGHT OR WRONG WAY TO BE MALE. How could a powerful message (or a better one) is be spread to the masses?

      Liked by 9 people

      • Blindsided, I can totally relate to your name. I was also blindsided. Absolutely didn’t see it coming. My daughter…who told me nothing until after her 18th birthday (per some online instructions booklet, no doubt), said it was the answer for why she always felt different….well, there are a lot of explanations for feeling different…what’s wrong with different?…and why should that make you step across the line to pretend to be the other sex anyway?…running away from makeup and dresses does not make you a man.

        Liked by 4 people

      • Blindsided, sorry you are dealing with this too, but glad that you found us. Many of our kids (mine included) announced they were transgender at 16 yrs old, it is such a difficult age.

        I like your slogan and wish our children would be taught this from an early age. Maybe then they wouldn’t be as easily swayed by all the pro-trans misinformation.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Burleton is scared and since he doesn’t have any rational or objective evidence to back up his side he always relies on an emotional, subjective discourse. This along with his lack of professional credentials is enough for anyone with common sense to veer far away from his clinic. Teens, however, may not have the worldly experience to be able to understand that in their drive to change their sex. Cari, a detransitioned woman from Burleton’s clinic made this clear. Teens do eed gatekeepers in this situation!

    Probably, Burleton is fighting back on his Facebook page because people are starting to get wary of his authority. Is his organization starting to lose money? The more that happens, the harder he will fight against 4thwave and any detransitioner who confronts him. Hopefully, this is a sign of a shift.

    Liked by 7 people

  6. It’s ridiculous when a so-called professional rants like this and cheers on others to “throw off their statistics.” Information potentially shedding light on why there are so many unexpected trans-identifying teenagers is important. Scientific inquiry should be encouraged, not squelched.

    I’m thankful Dr. Littman is researching this relatively recent phenomenon. No one else seems to be brave enough to do so. If Jenn Burleton is broadcasting this message on Facebook, it is likely that Dr. Littman is under pressure by trans activists to not release her findings. And they may be targeting her job and family too.

    This has happened before to others that have dared to question the transgender narrative and it will likely continue. Behavior like this deters therapists, doctors, nurses, teachers, school administrators, legislators, and journalists from publicly showing signs of skepticism. Definitely not a safe environment for impressionable teenagers, many of whom may just be caught up in a trend and could be harmed by unnecessary medical interventions.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Burleton is not a doctor, psychologist, social worker, nothing! He is not a “professional” of any kind. He was a musician who toured with “Up with People.” He’s just an obsessed autogynephiliac grifter and should not be allowed anywhere near children.

    Liked by 6 people

  8. I found this website via some research I was doing, and your work is important.
    I may be preaching to the choir, but I want to pitch in. I’m not a mother, I’m not a father, but I am concerned with the mental well being of my fellow citizens.

    I first learned of the transtrenders via Tumblr in Action. This led me to Sophie Labelle, a trans activist from Montreal, Canada. She has a webcomic, which gave me several concussions from hitting my forehead with my palm.

    My interest in this is to understand the societal impacts of such movements, and its logic. For instance, Sophie Labelle says “I am a woman, if you find women attractive, you should find me attractive”, but she is pre op. Also, the argument that “apparence doesn’t determine gender” but they then proceed to modify their sexually dismorphic characteristics so they look like the other sex.

    But Sophie doesn’t suffer dysphoria, from what she wrote. Her comic preach to children, and she pushes an agenda of “letting kids know other gender expressions exists” or even “don’t gender a child until it tells you its gender”.

    But, 99.9% of the people will be fine with their gender as an adult… so making every single parent modify the way to raise their child just in case it is part of the 0.01% that this new fangled genderless education from birth would benefit? Ridiculous.

    It’s like if we modified how we raised or kids in CASE they were autistic (much more common) later, even though the majority won’t be (another case of social contagion at play in the increasing autism diagnoses!) autistic anyway.

    The right thing to do is to deal with it as it comes. You can’t prevent everything and plan for every contingency.

    While I understand that trans people are real, and were kids once, so were trans kids of some sort…. It is very hard, I would say nearly impossible to distinguish real gender dysphoria from just some weird kid magickal thinking at that age. So, no choice but to wait.

    So, when kids become teenagers and show unease or difficulty, or mental illnesses or pain, what do you do? You get them treatment. First, you need to find out WHAT is the problem, and then you address it. Just because someone feels down and WANTS Valium because TV told you Valium is used to cure depression doesn’t mean you should be on Valium.

    We need more Psychiatrists and neurologists, as those two professions are Medical Doctors – psychologists are not, and psychology is NOT a science (google about it, it’s interesting! here’s a good article: They might be more objective and aware of the dangers of medication and rushing transition without sorting out other issues that may be the cause of the desire to transition.

    Before starting even Hormone Blockers, it should be mandatory to have multiple psychiatry exams, making it absolutely SURE it is gender dysphoria, and not something else.

    Transitioning just to try out other genders is pure transtrender, a fashion treatment, and they should be, naturally refused treatment.

    Parents who have a “transgender child” who is made a celebrity or some kind of living idol… That is most certainly MUNCHAUSEN BY PROXY, and extremely dangerous.

    And finally, /r/asktransgender advocating self medication… shame on you, shame on you.

    Liked by 4 people

  9. These people remind me more and more of the anti-vaxxers, with their cult-like mentality, bombarding of social media with shrill propaganda, viciously attacking anyone who doesn’t roll over and agree with their nonsense, and attempting to throw surveys with their biased anecdotes. The antics outlined in this post would seem to suggest they know something’s rotten in Denmark, and they’re afraid of another perspective being studied and reported. They’re clearly not the target audience for the survey anyway. It would be like someone who only moved to a certain state or country filling out a survey about what it’s like to be a lifelong resident, or people who converted to a religion for marriage filling out a survey about the experiences of single people converting for their own reasons.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. For the sake of argument, let’s say there really is nothing to the “social contagion” theory. Wouldn’t it be to everyone’s benefit to know this for sure? Hence, the need for research.

    To be sure, research can be biased. But the best way to counter a biased study is with better research, not with suppression tactics.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Under the education section of Burleton’s Facebook page he listed that he studied “resilience, performing arts, and human rights” at the University of Life in Brooklyn, NY. At first, I thought that it must be some religious university, then after looking it up I discovered that there is no such university in Brooklyn or anywhere. I don’t know if Burleton was trying to be funny or deceiving. Either way, it’s obvious that he has no post secondary education or training in anything! What a joke! And this guy is guiding teens to medical and surgical interventions that will disrupt their bodies’ physical and psychological wellbeing for the rest of their lives? This is really sickening.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. Mr. Burleton is not a woman or a mother and never will be. Watch a female bear protect its young. What Mr. Burleton does not possess is a mother-warrior spirit. 4th Wave Now exists because of the “work” he is doing, and how it is affecting MOTHERS and our families. Once you have a child, ALL the children of the world become yours. Whether you have a child or not, the majority of women possess this protective instinct naturally. Jenn Burleton is proving on a daily basis that he is NOT a woman, and does NOT CARE ABOUT CHILDREN, just on the basis of his continuing disregard of mothers with sincere and real concern and care about their children’s well beings…and through the HARM he is doing children. He is hijacking the childhoods of young children (in many of our cases here on 4th Wave Now, our young daughters). And then he is trying to shut us up? All I can say is: Hell hath no fury like an angry mom. He will have to answer to all of us sooner or later. His empire will topple. Brilliant that he publicly posted his full intention and direction for the world to see, to corrupt this survey. What sort of “professional” does this? He is truly certifiable and will one day be held accountable. Where is the Oregon Attorney General? Why hasn’t he been put out of business yet???? He is a fake and a fraud. I invite him to come visit me and my daughter at my house at any time. THAT would be the best wake-up call for my daughter…

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Amazing that the head of a gender clinic has no college education at all and publicly calls for messing up a research study. Hopefully, the researcher will follow-up to ensure the validity of the surveys by making sure the people in question actually exist. Their names do not need to be released to the public, but they should be privately vetted by the researcher to make sure they are 100% legit. Mr Burleton and his tactics need to be exposed. Trans, like the proverbial emperor, truly has no clothes. He is running scared, because he knows damned well that social contagion is a HUGE factor for kids in search of their “tribe.”

    Liked by 2 people

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