Medical Group Publishes Guidance For Kids Who Are ‘Gender Tootsie Roll Pops’

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Sarah Wilder Social Issues Reporter
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The American Psychological Association (APA) published guidance in 2018 that promoted a “gender affirmative model” and listed “gender tootsie roll pops” as a gender identity.

The APA published the guidance in a handbook titled, “The Gender Affirmative Model: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Supporting Transgender and Gender Expansive Children,” which provides mental health professionals with guidance on how to deal with transgender-identifying kids.

The guidance was co-authored by Diane Ehrensaft, who has previously said kids can identify as a number of “gender hybrids,” including a “gender Prius” and a “gender minotaur.” Ehrensaft is the mental health director and chief psychologist at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Benioff Children’s Hospital gender development center and a professor at UCSF School of Medicine. (RELATED: Rachel Levine Praised Gender Clinic That Wants To Call Women ‘Egg Producers’ As ‘Inspiring’)

Ehrensaft and co-author Colt Keo-Meier listed “gender tootsie roll pop,” “gender-ambidextrous” and “protogay children” in the guidance. “Gender tootsie roll pop” kids are defined as “Children who exhibit one gender on the outside but experience another gender on the inside.”

“The hard candy is in place to protect or shield the inside chewiness from an unaccepting world or an internalized unaccepting part of one’s own self. It should be noted that the gender Tootsie Roll Pops, if not provided with resilience building, are often the most at­-risk TGE [transgender and gender expansive] children.”

“The gender affirmative approach has emerged and has become an ascending international model for supporting children’s gender health, an effort that we are proud to be a part of,” the authors write in the APA guidance chapter. “Simultaneously, therapeutic models aimed at altering children’s gender to conform to cultural norms or influenc­ing children to accept the gender that matches the sex on their birth certificate have been challenged, declared unethical, and evaluated as harmful to children’s well­ being.”