General Question

ragingloli's avatar

If, counter to your hopes, you got a second son instead of a daughter, would it be OK to turn the boy into a girl as long as the offspring has not formed its own identity?

Asked by ragingloli (52025points) January 27th, 2015

Also consider the sex change at different stages.
You could do it while it was still an embryo, a fetus, or right after birth, via surgery, hormone and/or gene therapy.
What other changes or enhancements would you be willing to consider (cybernetic implants, additional limbs and organs)?

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34 Answers

janbb's avatar

Um – no. I did get a second son instead of a daughter and he is one of the great joys (and boys) of my life. And a totally different animal than his brother – who is also a joy but in other ways.

I think only the person themselves should decide if they want to transgender.

Coloma's avatar

WTF! No.
Would it be okay to turn a dog into a cat? lol

elbanditoroso's avatar


Although I see remnants of the Hitler-period eugenics experimentation showing through in these questions.

reijinni's avatar

What drugs are you on? Of course not. If I get 2 boys, I get two boys.

filmfann's avatar

Abslutely not. not even if he is Jewish

ucme's avatar

Usually & this is just one guy talking here, a yes or no answer given in general gets removed.
This thread therefore reminds me of a song:
No, there’s no limits…

RocketGuy's avatar

Unless you can change it at the genetic level – XY to XX, bad things will happen if you try other “fixes”.

I got a second daughter instead of a son as my second child. Luck of the draw. Or could be considered my fault since I put out X and Y sperm. I got a good girl out of it. Can’t complain.

Cruiser's avatar

I would consider a parent to be incredibly selfish if they did any of what you suggested. Just wrong IMO.

Coloma's avatar

Some of the worst serial killers in the world were males whose mothers dressed them as girls. Just sayin’. lol

longgone's avatar

I am opposed to performing any but medically necessary operations on babies.
If that needed to be clarified.

As to hormone therapy, I don’t know enough about that option. I can’t answer whether I’d feel comfortable putting a child through this kind of procedure.

Let’s pretend changing a child’s sex was possible by waving a magic wand: Even then, I’d want to know why this kid’s parents are intent on raising a boy instead of a girl, or vice versa. They’d have to present a good reason, and so far, I haven’t been able to come up with one.

Lightlyseared's avatar

Nope. It’s been tried. It doesn’t work.

ucme's avatar

@Coloma I didn’t know Liberace was a mass murderer, killed a few songs certainly.

LostInParadise's avatar

Let me consider a more benign version of the question. Suppose that you could use genetic engineering to choose the gender of a child. It should eventually be feasible if it is not already so. It would just be a matter of filtering the sperm’s X or Y chromosomes. The whole idea of genetic engineering makes me uneasy. Unless there is a signficant health issue related to a possible genetic disease, I don’t think it should ever be used.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

YIKES! No way, that would only mean I would need a brain transplant! Thanks for the heads up question! You got the tidepool swirling and the jellies splashing!

Here2_4's avatar

I would not do it to my child, but if you want to, @ragingloli , go ahead. Some people have preconceived ideas of how they want to die, and if someone wants to be killed by their own child, that would be a good way of ensuring success.

Buttonstc's avatar

All you need to do is read up on the case of David Reimer, a Canadian baby with a botched circumcision resulting in the loss of his penis.

The idiot Dr. persuaded the parents to raise him as a girl (using the same ass backwards logic outlined in the OP).

The sheer amount of hell this kid went through would quickly dissuade anyone else from trying the same.

The flaw in that whole line of thinking is that gender identity is determined by how the child is raised. WRONG.

Gender identity is innate. It isn’t determined only by external genitalia.

This baby was born a boy. Even though totally raised as a girl, the older he grew the more he knew something was horribly wrong.

After his attempt at suicide, the parents finally fessed up to the truth.

gondwanalon's avatar

It won’t work. Genetically the boy will stay male however you slice and dice him. It was tried in 1965 in Canada through a botched circumcision They removed the testes and even carved out a vagina on the baby boy and then was raised as a girl. But the so called “girl” acted totally like a boy.

Buttonstc's avatar


Great minds think alike :)

Thanks for providing the link. I’m on my old iPhone and can’t do links.

I first became aware of him through a report and interview with him on either 60 Mins. or 20/20.

Listening to him recount it all was heartbreaking. That Dr. should have had his license pulled.

Berserker's avatar

Wow, some doctor. :/

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

This question is wrong on every level.

1. A parent should not be able to choose the sex of their child, regardless.
2. Sex selection is sexist. It is not the place of the medical community to harm children in the process of exercising sexism.
3. A child is born male or female, and science is not at the level where we can alter this.
4. Sex reassignment surgery is a horrific thing to go through. Seriously, only read about what it involves if you have a strong stomach for medical procedures.
5. People who have sex reassignment surgery have an increased risk of suicide following the procedure.

janbb's avatar

@FireMadeFlesh I know someone who has gone through it. Only a decision that should be made by an adult for themselves.

I’d be curious about what the OP’s motivation is in asking this question. Just curious.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh my God. That kid went through living hell.. Sounds like the doctor was a pedophile to boot.

@janbb the OP is @ragingloli. That’s your answer!

@Silence04 if you really think it’s OK, read the link I posted with the word “hell,” above.

Also, to quote @Buttonstc above:

“The flaw in that whole line of thinking is that gender identity is determined by how the child is raised. WRONG.

Gender identity is innate. It isn’t determined only by external genitalia.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@janbb I’d go even further, and say the decision should only be made by an informed adult and their psychiatrist. If I were the surgeon, I would want a legal medical opinion that the person was mentally competent to make such a decision.

janbb's avatar

@FireMadeFlesh Transgender identification is getting more and more common in the States and some people are opting for surgery in addition to hormone treatment. People who are certainly mentally stable. Nothing I would want to do but I wouldn’t be quick to label it. I’ve even heard of a sixteen year old trans male getting a double mastectomy with their parents’ permission.

keobooks's avatar

Back in the day, when a child’s genitalia was ambiguous, doctors allowed parents to choose the gender they wanted of the child. It turns out in many if not most of these cases, the kids grew up feeling wrong when their parents chose the biologically incorrect gender. Now they do a DNA test if it’s really hard to tell.

I think changing the gender of a boy with “normal” genitalia would be considered extreme child abuse.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@janbb Even if 95% of cases are agreed to by the psychiatrist, I think it is an important check.

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