The ROGD Teenager: A Profile
A personality profile of teenagers who tend to be drawn to gender identity ideology.
Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria (ROGD) is generally socially contagious, in that any adolescent online or in a progressive social environment will feel social incentives to take steps like using new pronouns or calling themselves a different gender. However, those adolescents who become most heavily indoctrinated and most committed to living a transgender lifestyle are predisposed to this intense infatuation with gender ideology by common personality traits and life experiences that become strikingly apparent after a handful of conversations with parents of trans identifying teenagers about their child’s temperament and life trajectory. At this point, I have had hundreds of such conversations with parents and with detransitioners describing themselves retroactively, and I’ve come to realize that many of my personality traits and life experiences, which predisposed me to ROGD, are shared to an uncanny degree among other young people who identify as trans or have in the past.
This article will be a general profile of that teenager who is highly susceptible to ROGD. Of course, nobody will match this description 100%, as it is a general profile. Some young people who identify as trans or have in the past may not relate to this at all! My aim is to describe a phenomenon I have observed through my time learning from people and families affected by ROGD. My greatest experience is with ROGD girls, but I have heard from male detransitioners that many of these traits are also common among trans identifying boys and young men. I will describe the emotional, cognitive, and environmental qualities that tend to converge and result in this susceptibility. To do so, I must discuss certain environmental factors and family dynamics that, when combined with personality factors, contribute to a higher likelihood of an ROGD trajectory. My intent is not to blame or demonize parents. Parents are seldom either completely malignant or totally infallible. Parents are human beings with their own strengths, weaknesses, emotions, baggage, inner children, and all that. Relationships are difficult, and parenting is especially difficult in the modern age which presents unforeseen challenges. By delving into the topic of family dynamics as a contributing factor to ROGD susceptibility, my aim is to empower parents with better insight into their child’s experience in order to make more informed decisions. At times, parents may not even realize that parenting the ROGD susceptible personality may require different skills or simply be more difficult than parenting other children. I would encourage self-compassion for any parenting mistakes that have been made in parenting these unique young people, and a focus on how to move forward rather than self-flagellating for what has happened in the past.
Emotional Intensity/Emotional Sensitivity
The most fundamental personality trait that I have observed among ROGD-susceptible people is greater emotional intensity and sensitivity. Some may even call it “hypersensitivity”. Emotional sensitivity occurs on a spectrum, with some people having very low sensitivity to emotions, some experiencing their emotions very intensely, and most falling somewhere in between.
Experiencing emotions strongly is not a mental illness. It is a powerful, yet natural, human trait that when combined with an ill-fitting environment, lack of guidance, or in some cases, true dysfunctional family dynamics or even trauma, can result in intense emotional pain especially during the chaotic and hormonally turbulent period of adolescence. Because of this, being “sensitive” is often considered a negative or even defective trait, but the capacity to experience emotion more strongly than others is also behind much of the greatest creation, ingenuity, and love exhibited by mankind. The strong emotions do not need to be punished, denied, or suppressed, but rather accepted and channeled into constructive behavior.
As children, emotionally sensitive people may be much more needy than others. They may have a greater amount of separation anxiety and have a harder time starting school, going to a daycare, being watched by a new babysitter, or even being set down instead of constantly held as infants. They may need extra reassurance and a lot of time being comforted and encouraged to do new things, take risks, or recover from perceived hurts and setbacks. They form strong attachments and feel compassion very strongly, which can lead to becoming upset easily if they feel something is unfair, hurtful, or a rejection. They care -- so much -- about everything. From a young age, they have a strong sense of what they think is right and wrong. They have an incredible tenderness and consideration for how other people and animals are feeling. They may more easily believe a person or an animal is suffering or being unfairly treated and become severely distressed. They may be exceptionally clever and witty themselves yet struggle with accepting even light jokes or teasing from others.