Trans Fact Checker

A handy myth-buster copied with kind permission from

MYTH: Transwomen have surgery to transition.

REALITY: 80-95% of males who identify as transgender keep their penis. Source:  Evidence given by GIRES to MPs at the Women and Equalities Select Committee’s transgender inquiry in 2015.


MYTH: Transwomen in the UK are more at risk of murder.

REALITY: Thankfully, transgender people are no more likely to be murdered than anyone else in the UK. Source: ONS and Trans Murder Monitoring Project. Since 2008, 7 transgender-identifying males (aka transwomen) have been murdered and 12 transgender-identifying males have been convicted of murder. There were no recorded murders of transgender-identifying females in that time.


MYTH: Transwomen pose no risk to women and girls.

REALITY: There is no evidence that males who identify as women are less likely to commit violent or sexual crimes than any other member of the male sex. Source: Transgender males retain the same rates of criminality as other males, including for violent crime, according to the only long-term study (Dhejne et al, 2011). In 2017 Fair Play for Women found that at least 40% of transgender prisoners in England and Wales are serving sentences in sex offender prisons. These figures have since been corroborated by the Ministry of Justice.


MYTH: Men would not identify as transgender to attack women and girls.

REALITY: This monitoring project documents crimes against women and girls in the UK by males who identify as women. 98% of sex offences are committed by males. 90% of sex crime victims are female.


MYTH: Half of transgender young people attempt suicide.

REALITY: This statistic comes from two questionnaires filled in by a self-selecting group transgender young people, far too small a group to meet normal statistical standards, reviewed here and here. In reality, child suicide is extremely rare. A study of Serious Case Reviews found no suicides of trans children in the UK in the last 10 years. Despite this, the threat of child suicide is used regularly by transgender lobby groups to press parents into transing their children. It is irresponsible to quote the survey without highlighting the very small sample size and flouts guidelines on reporting suicide by the Samaritans.


MYTH: Puberty blocker drugs are harmless.

REALITY: Medical professionals are voicing serious concerns about the use of drugs like Lupron to block puberty in children. Estrogen and testosterone are not just needed for puberty, they are vital for teenage brain development. Young adults have been left with stunted genitalia after using puberty blockers. Much more research is needed. In the US, the FDA is investigating Lupron.


MYTH: You can be born with a female brain in a male body.

REALITY: There is no such thing as a male brain or female brain, especially at birth, when all but the most basic parts of the brain are undeveloped. Our brains are plastic and shaped by our experience.


MYTH: Sex is assigned at birth.

REALITY: Biological sex is observed and recorded at birth. Sex is determined at conception, when an egg from a woman (which always carries an X chromosome) is fertilised by a sperm from a man, carrying either a Y or an X chromosome. In fewer than 1 in 1,000 births there is a chromosomal abnormality that means sex cannot be determined at birth. For those other than a subgroup of intersex people, XX is female and XY is male. Source: Intersex Society of North America.


MYTH: Legal sex change is difficult and invasive in the UK

REALITY: The UK Gender Recognition Act (2004) is one of the most liberal in the world, requiring neither surgery or drugs to legally change the sex written on a birth certificate. About a third of the countries in the world allow people to change their legal sex status and of those the vast majority require transgender people to have genital surgery, including many European countries and most US states.  Sources: GOV.UK and Transgender Law Center.

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