Volume 16, Issue 4, Winter 2016
The National Catholic Bioethics Center
Brief Statement on Transgenderism
The claim that it is possible to change one’s sex, or that sexual identity is fluid, contradicts scientific evidence, reason, the nature of the human person, and key tenets of the Catholic faith. A small number of persons claiming to be “transgender” mistakenly believe that their true self and sexual identity contradict the sex of their bodies. They frequently experience profound suffering due to intense psychological distress and due to the challenges of forming a healthy self-identity and basic human relationships, including friendships and marriage. Hormonal and surgical interventions, and other behaviors and practices that attempt to validate mistaken beliefs to relieve distress and suffering, are inappropriate responses to their condition. Persons claiming to be transgender must be accompanied on their difficult journey with true charity, and should be offered ethical, effective therapies based on sound anthropology and scientific evidence. The National Catholic Bioethics Center offers considerations to facilitate appropriate efforts to accompany and to help such persons.