Tom and Tricia, each believing that they had serious medical conditions requiring expert advice, went to a leading endocrinologist for help. Tom and Tricia received different medical advice. Let’s see if what happens next makes much sense.
Tom walks into Dr. Cowen’s Office
Doctor, I just turned 38. I’m a little slower on my step. I don’t move and live with purpose.
“Yes, tell me more,” Dr. Cowen says.
It takes me longer to recover from sessions in the gym. My joints ache. My sex drive is down. I also seem to have a hazy, almost depressed view on life.
“The symptoms you report are all very normal and to be expected.
Normal? What do you mean, doctor?
“Male aging is a normal process. What you’re going through happens to every man at some point in his life.
“Oh yes, an Internet doctor. You shouldn’t listen to those people. They just want your money.
He’s not a doctor and doesn’t claim to be. He just posts scientific articles and real-world observations. He claims that most doctors make a moral judgment about aging that is not scientific. He claims that humans have a right to use science to enhance their lives and that doctors are narrow-minded, focusing only on treating diseases (even self-inflicted ones like heart disease and diabetes) rather than optimizing the human experience.
“Taking testosterone is dangerous. That guy doesn’t know what he’s talking about.
Well he is totally transparent. He even posted actual blood work while on TRT encourages people to correct him when he’s wrong.
“Listen to me. I’m a doctor. I went to medical school!
Sure, but science is science, right? I can read. There are a bunch of articles on PubMed about TRT. Here are a few articles I’ve read. I also brought in an endocrinology textbook. Would you mind explaining to me why these peer-reviewed articles are incorrect?
“You are not a doctor and can’t understand those articles.
OK, you win, doctor. I’ll accept what you say as true. TRT has potential side effects. I’m willing to accept those risks. Besides, I’ll get bloodwork. We’ll be smart about this.
“There is nothing I can do for you. Messing with your hormones is unnatural and unsafe.
But isn’t it my right to self-direction? I want to be more than I am. Shouldn’t I have the freedom to willingly accept those risks? I’ll sign a waiver.
“Get out of my office and grow old gracefully. Get an HDTV, mortgage, girl who kind of likes you, and wait to die.
Tricia walks into Dr. Cowen’s Office.
Doctor, I feel like I’m a man trapped in a woman’s body.
“We will get you a prescription for testosterone right away. We also need to schedule surgery to have your breast tissue removed. You will have many operations, as a matter of fact.
I’m totally OK with that. I believe a person has the right to self-direction. If I want to use hormones and undergo extensive surgeries to alter my appearance, why should anyone stop me?
“Indeed! Also, here is a pamphlet discussing hate crimes you might face. Here is an article on how to get the government to pay for your sex change operations.
Really?! There are all of these resources available to me?
“Oh yes, and you should know your rights. If anyone refuses to hire you or if they want to fire you, you can sue them for discrimination.
This is amazing!
“As a matter of fact, I am Chair of the Physician’s LGBT Committee Against Hate. We recently took the medical license of a doctor who refused to help a patient undergo hormone replacement therapy.
Good for you!
“Yes, we can’t have people letting their outdated views of gender construction get in the way of medical treatment.
You are right, doctor. I wish all of those men would die!
“Oh they are, honey, they are. 🙂