Daytime talk show Loose Women
has come under fire after an "uneducated" and "unacceptable" discussion about transgender issues which saw panelist Nadia Sawalha call it the new 'in' thing with adolescents, like self-harm and bulimia.
The topic of transgender youth was raised by host Andrea McLean during yesterday's edition of the ITV show (November 26), where several panelists appeared to express concern at the increased visibility of trans issues in the media.
“There’s been a quadruple rise in the number of children who have been referred to the NHS because of transgender feelings,” said McClean.
“Transgender is a word that has been bandied around an awful lot in the last 12 months or so, especially because of the Caitlyn Jenner case over in America.”
Conflating gender and sexuality, she continued: “One case is wonderful and lovely, how accepting people are of fluid sexuality… but the truth is that young children are now questioning their sexuality and their gender at such a young age… is that refreshing, or is it a worry.”
Panelist and former Eastenders
star Nadia Sawalha replied: “Last year my step daughter told me the ‘in’ thing at school was self harming, and then before that it had been throwing up. You know, fashionable words that have been taken on.”
She continued: “The other day, [my kids] were playing, and we actually heard from the other room, ‘which one of us is going to be transgender?’
“Can you imagine that, even a year ago?”
The 51-year-old went on: “The other day, [my husband] Mark went oh, I feel like a woman, and Kiki went: ‘You’re not going to become a woman, are you?’… can you imagine when we were eight even thinking about that?”
Discussing someone she knew who had recently come out as a transgender man, fellow panelist Gloria Hunniford added: “It would be bad enough if your child eventually had to get a mastectomy for health reasons, but just to look like a boy?”
She added: “It's a whole new thing to have to deal with. You understand homosexuality, but when your child says I’m transgender, is a whole new thing”.
Many viewers were quick to express their anger at the tone of the discussion, with one viewing urging the panel to “get educated”.
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