A British man plans to sue the National Health Service (NHS) for pushing him to undergo a sex-altering surgery without considering his battle with mental illness.
In a recent interview with the Daily Mail, Ritchie Herron from Newcastle shared that he struggled with depression and gender dysphoria before considering a body-altering procedure as the answer to his problems.
After undergoing surgery in 2018, Herron lamented that the procedure was “the biggest mistake of my life” since it rendered him infertile and incontinent.
“Oh, God, what have I done?” he recalled saying to himself after the anesthesia from the sex-change surgery wore off.
In 2014, Herron was deemed “transexual” after going to two 30-minute appointments with a psychiatrist at the Northern Region Gender Dysphoria Service. At the time, he was also prescribed medication to halt his natural testosterone production in preparation for the surgery.
Shortly afterward, Herron began identifying as a girl named “Abby” and dressing in female clothing.
According to CBN News, Herron was initially given referrals for a sex-change surgery in 2015 and 2017 but turned them down. He was then warned that he would be discharged from the NHS Newcastle gender clinic, where he had been receiving care since 2015.
He also shared that family members urged the clinic to consider his history of mental illness, calls that were seemingly unheeded.
Herron eventually underwent surgery on May 23, 2018, to remove his penis and testicles. An artificial vagina was constructed in the place of his newly removed male genitalia.
“I didn’t even see the surgeon,” he noted. “I was very much in the mindset of, ‘I’m here now, there’s no stopping it, even if I wanted to.'”
As reported by The Daily Wire, Herron’s planned lawsuit accuses the NHS of urging him to undergo the surgery without considering his mental health problems and for failing to address the possible risks that come with the surgery.
He hopes his story will serve as a cautionary tale to others, noting that an “avalanche” of de-transitioners is coming.
“This is an avalanche waiting to happen,” he said. “Transition is now being sold to people on a mass scale. It’s like PPI, but more sinister.”
“In a few years, I’m sure we’ll have law firms asking people if they transitioned and would like to claim compensation.”
An NHS spokesperson refuted Herron’s claims that people are being pushed into surgeries without receiving proper counseling first.
“Care plans are collaborative and tailored to each patient’s needs and goals, and treatment decisions are made following a thorough assessment in line with national recommendations,” the spokesperson said.