Feedback on the group "Transgender Questions (Parents)"

This page was first started to store the criticism as the group began, in early November, 2017. Most of that was written by people who didn't join the group, but wanted it not to exist.

Not everyone, though, wanted me to shut up. As the questions and responses continued, some were writing to me on the side, as they read, and as of February 2018, the positive feedback outweighed the negative.

If I had let the Column 1 negativity stop me, Column 2 would be very short.

NOTE! In 2022, I took the columns out and stacked them.
Click here to jump to the positive comments.

Criticism and discouragement

Sandra Dodd you are ignorant! Trans issues are not this! Pedophiles are just that, pedophiles.... perverts are perverts! Trans has absolutely NOTHING to do with a sick mind. What in the hell is wrong with you? Stop trying to spread ignorant, uneducated crap.

Your generation is what is ruining this world and keeping us from moving forward with progression.
Shut the hell up already!

If you want to know more about transgender issues go and talk folks going through it. Not on a public forum though. Questions that you pose sound ignorant.

Which is understandable since its clear you do not know much about the subject. Go learn and immerse yourself in the subject before moderating something you clearly do know much about.

He probably meant "clearly do not know much about."
His wife clicked "like."

no. Omg. That paragraph shows your ignorance on the subject. NO PARENT WANTS their kid to be trans. That is ridiculous. Parents are not talking their kids into being the other gender and promising different bodies. Comments like THOSE are what is harmful.. . . . someone like you, with no experience having a trans child or being heavily involved in the trans community, should be moderating a forum like this.
She probably meant "should not be moderating...."

I've come to the conclusion on here that none of this really matters but yes, I did mean attempt*. I'm pretty much done here. I've seen the way that you conduct things on other forums Sandra Dodd and honestly, I'm done with your bull shit. You act like such an expert on things and this is NOT something that you should be holding the reins on. You've proven many times on this page that you really don't know the first thing about trans kids and their families.

-=-You've proven many times on this page that you really don't know the first thing about trans kids and their families.-=-

I responded:
I don't need to know everything to ask questions, or to pass on the questions of other people which have not been answered in secret private groups, and it turns out most are not being answered here with the lights on, either.

*She had written that there was a 41% suicide rate among trans kids

[B]y the comments posted on this page it's clear that you do not want to hear from actual parents and trans people but prefer a echo chamber that transition is bad and people regret it and detransition, all because a close friend doesn't want to encourage her child to transition. When anyone with actual firsthand knowledge of trans people posts their views have been discounted. I'm out.

First, he was posting statistics without references,
then started posting link after link without comment.

What is the point of this forum?

If you had genuine questions...there is a plethora of information right at your finger tips. It's called Google.

For everything that I have read nobody genuinely had any questions or had any real intentions of listening to the answers from the people that deal with this daily. Walk a mile in a parents shoes that DO have Trans kids and you would see that it is NOTHING like any of you people think.

This question...can most certainly be found on Google.
. . . .
Find something else to fill your time up with. OR if you truly have these questions fill up your time on Google.

I think it's a shame that only you can start a thread, Sandra. Some of us know quite a lot about this and only being "allowed" to comment is quite restrictive.

(and after another moderator politely responded...)

Ah well, it makes me feel a bit like a minion tbh. I would point people with questions in the direction of the 4thwavenow website, or the blog posts of Lily Maynard, both easily found with a quick google.

There is already a really good forum for gender critical and questioning parents, linked on the 4thwavenow website.

(and there was more about what wasn't good enough about the forum, then the person agreed with another that the forum recommended wasn't easy to navigate, and wasn't visible without joining).

What's so harmful?
Saying public discussion is harmful led into a long rant...

There is a lot of fear of criticism on all sides. Us parents of lgbtq kids fear criticism of others and it isn't unbiased criticism its thransphobic comments that have been shared by many in this group. Telling a trans/questioning person that they can't be trans because men can't be women or women can't be men isn't helpful and its extremely hurtful especially to someone experiencing severe dysphoria. That's what has several unschoolers, especially youth, upset. I get having a place of resources and information for parents to go to but this isn't what this group is turning into. We aren't denying peoples stories and it is good to hear them, its the thransphobic rhetoric and those people aren't of benefit to this group and should be removed from commenting. They are hurting our children. I am deeply that people fear sharing their stories because they don't want to be chastised. Its also one thing to share your experience and another to use that experience to define someone or a group of people and judge them by it, just because some decide their trans due to trauma or other reasons and then De transition doesn't mean every trans child teen has the same reason. This is turning into a place of pain for many in our community and its not okay. I also can't see how separating trans issues from unschooling is possible. Unschooling for us is more then just about learning its our philosophy for. Our life. A lot of people are hurt because of what's been said by other unschoolers, ones they trusted and realize they never truly accepted them and harshly judged them in silence. And alot of those hurt people are youth.

This doesn't feel good to me at all. It doesn't feel like a positive place. It doesn't feel like a safe place. As parents of trans kids the last thing we need to hear is some thransphobic rhetoric. And instead of anyone taking a step back and seeing the big picture and how these hurt youth and parents feel were being scorned for speaking up about how unsafe we feel in our own community and about how this is hurting others.

Can't she just shut the fuck up already and leave us the fuck alone??! UGH
Sandra has GERMS and MOLD
Posted in places where I couldn't see it but others passed it on, early September 2018:

"Sandra promotes violence against transgender people, and when we promote Sandra, we promote violence against transgender people. Sandra promotes harm towards children."

Appreciation and encouragement

Hi Sandra, I don't feel comfortable commenting on public posts but I'm so thankful that you are running this group.

I'm not going to back away from recommending your writings at all 🙂
I'm not sorry you went public. I think it's important to have people willing to question. Perhaps there are parents who, at first, thought you and that group were awful, but now they are having second thoughts, and they are grateful for some thoughtful and in-depth discussion, particularly within an unschooling context.

July 24, 2018:

Thanks for saying something. For asking when everyone else is afraid — of questions, of answers, of lynch mobs...

I appreciate all your critical thinking through the years, and though I have not commented publicly, this includes your critical thinking around the trans issues.

Thank you for your work. This balanced approach is meaningful to me while our adult offspring has been navigating her puberty again in her late 20's.

Unfortunately, we have a small community [there where she is] and it's a very fine line to walk trying not to upset people that I will be seeing at least once a year at the conference, at least till we stop going.

We are not even dealing with gender issues with [my kids], but even attending the conference and other gatherings, reading discussions online, it was enough of a disconnect in logic that I was finding myself needing some guidance on how to approach even thinking about the topic.

Your page, writings from Joyce, Brie, Jenny—all have been a breath of fresh air, and I thank you!

When the group was nine months old::

I wanted to let you know that I appreciate what you are doing with the page. It is hard to find information that does not either deny the existence of ANY trans people, or advocate transition for everyone who even mentions being trans. I have searched for a happy medium of caution and the belief that teens may not be ready to make such drastic decisions. Thank you.

When it was new, some of these:

I am thankful to find you have started this group. Was first inspired by your contributions when my baby was an infant [years ago]. ❤ We've been unschooling...since the very beginning. Thanks for your generosity!

Thanks for starting a forum where parents can get answers to questions that no one else seems to want to address. Too many folks assume that any parent wondering about how to counsel their young child about future possible side effects is a transphobic parent. Too many folks do not understand how some doctors really do immediately prescribe drugs that have serious side effects.

Hi Sandra. I wanted to tell you I appreciate your transgender question group. I'm one of the unschooling parents who can't be public about gender critical topics, for a variety of reasons... I'm horrified by the skewering that's taken place on social media, of [Brie], you, and many others who dare to voice examined opinions/ideas. I loathe not being able to respond on public threads or defend my friends, but I thought I'd at least send a private message of appreciation.

Thank you so much for driving this page as a resource for parents.
Thank you so much for starting this group.

Thank you for your courage to do all of this.

Just wanted to say thank you for your courage in starting the Transgender page. As far as I know, I have no trans people in my immediate family, but I do have people in my life who are, and have been trying learn more about it for a while. I have been appalled at the viciousness in many of the 'places' I have looked, and was very sad to see discussions shut down in unschooling forums - I expected better for some reason. I am finding your page informative, but still so full of dogmatic 'answers' which are not answers but rather, attacks on anyone asking questions. I so appreciate the way you moderate your pages, your clarity of thinking and expression. You are one of my few heroes. xx

I just want to thank you for starting the new group and asking the questions. It must be taking up an inordinate amount of your time even though you have no horse in this race so to speak. I know it is of great value to people, in spite of what a few are saying. I appreciate what you're doing, and wanted you to know.

I;m loving this group. I'm very grateful you created it.... This is a really difficult thing you are doing. 💛

Thanks for starting it!

I have appreciated you asking the hard questions about the Trans issue lately...I have not been brave enough to join the group...just reading along for information.

I think a space where people can ask questions and get good information is an awesome idea!

I think it's a very important discussion to have....
. . . .
So thank you for starting the Transgender Questions group, for keeping it open and public, and for being you. Because of my trust in your focus on exploring and examining unschooling ideas, I believe this group could be a good resource for me in the coming years.

Thank you for starting the group. There's so much fear and panic about making the "right" decision NOW that it's creating such a mess.

From someone who defended me, in another group where this came up, and was shouted down, after I wrote to reassure her:

You are an amazing human, Sandra. Thank you for reaching out to me. I WAS worried about you, and those like you.

I don't post much publicly anymore and I really don't comment either. The "social media" community has become too much like a pack of wild dogs. 😉

But I had to say my piece about a woman and her efforts that has so completely changed the direction of our lives for the better. I started to argue the point but I'm not very good at online arguments. I take them too personally. And then, like my son says, you really can't argue with fanatics.

If it makes you feel any better, there is a family of five out in the California desert that is happier, healthier, and smarter because of what you have shared 13 years ago and how you continued to share it online through the years.

Sandra Dodd, I cannot thank you enough for your wisdom, courage, and persistence.

Thank you Sandra, this topic runs deep. Without groups like yours people would find it hard to find open constructive dialogue.

Your discussions on transgender issues have opened my eyes to a whole load of stuff I didn't really know much about. I was beginning to get that feeling that I had somehow entered some kind of parallel universe, and was struggling to catch up. Reading your posts and discussions has helped me start to pick apart why some things weren't sitting well with me.

My [teens] and I have been having many, many interesting conversations inspired by discussions on your pages.

I love that the group isn't private. It has been nothing but respectful, but still an open place to question the enormous increase in children, especially girls, identifying as trans.
I think we all need to be as courageous as you are, and I, personally feel inspired by your ability to keep telling the TRUTH despite the pummelling from those who call themselves "progressive".
Sandra, you have the heart of a lion and manage to do it without harming anyone else. I'm constantly reminded of how grateful I am for a forum like this.
I have been following quietly your group transgender questions on Facebook and I admire your ability to question everything and it seems to me you're pretty good at calling out bullshit (excuse the term)....

It's sad to see people urging others to ignore all of your many years of writings about unschooling. I feel that will cut unschooling families off from a truly valuable resource. Out of everything I have read about unschooling it has been your website and Facebook group that have brought about real changes in my family life. I admire your bravery in providing a place for people to ask questions about such a controversial issue.

Your page is the only place I found folks that allowed for real questions I was feeling and support that I needed so badly. Thanks so much!! 💝
Someone who had sent links for me to share wrote:
I'm usually scrolling past such things that infuriate me but I keep seeing more and more of it and I don't wish my children to grow up in such a twisted reality. So I expressed my opinion and sent an email to the other directors of that organization, I messaged you too. I'm glad that your forum exists. Thank you!
(October 2019:)

Thank you for this group, it has really helped me to see another perspective. Before I started reading more about some of the criticism of transgenderism I believed that transgender people simply are born with their identity and have no other choice than to transition. And who would do that if they weren't 100% sure?

But it seems that in recent years with the affirmative model parents have been sold on the idea that transition is the only way to help a child who experiences dysphoria and that the negative sides of transitioning are heavily downplayed. Very sad.

Thank you

I think it useful for people to hear from others who had no idea of this growing movement. Or the campaign of silence.

Have I told you I am so grateful you started the group and made it public?

Feedback about my unschooling resources, mostly good, some bad

Index, transgender issues My transgender page Transgender Questions (Parents) group (facebook)

Index/Directory of questions and issues disccussed at Transgender Questions (Parents)