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16-Year-Old British Boy Could be Youngest to Have Sex Change
Filed under: In The News
Bradley Cooper, who turned 16 last week, wishes to be called Ria. He's been dressing as a girl since he was 12, borrowing his mother's lipstick and clothes from his three older sisters.
His wish may soon come true, as the Hull and East Yorkshire NHS Trust, a public health care provider, is said to have agreed to pay for his £10,000 (about $14,000) sex change operation.
Cooper would be the youngest sex change patient to date, and there is plenty of controversy surrounding the topic -- not just because of his age, but also over the fact that the NHS would pay for the procedure with tax payers' dollars.
"When there are people dying of cancer who are told the drugs they need are too expensive, it is wrong to be funding less urgent procedures like this," Mark Wallance, from the TaxPayers' Alliance, tells the Daily Mail. "Saving lives should come at the very top of the list."But Cooper insists this surgery would be lifesaving to him, telling the newspaper, "[My life] won't be worth living unless I have that operation. The doctors have said I need the surgery for my own peace of mind."
Cooper has worked with a psychologist and was approved and moved to a waiting list, which could have him in surgery within 18 months.
This raises two questions: First, at 16 years old, is Cooper old enough to make this irreversible choice? And second, do you think the British government should be paying for the surgery?
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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.