Mother of a “Transgender Child” Writes…

September 26, 2012

From Katie S., mother of a “Transgender Child”:

Submitted on 2012/09/23 at 5:54 pm

I find this entire blog very mean-spirited. I’m not sure why you have such strong feelings against transpeople. I feel sorry I stumbled onto it. Transgender people are already a marginalized population. They experience violence left and right. Honestly, why do transpeople bother you all so bad that you have to invest so much time and energy tearing them down? Maybe I’d have to be some kind of ultra feminist lesbian type to understand.

I’m actually a conservative-leaning woman. I’m married, and live in Utah with a girl and three boys. The baby of my family, a boy, has insisted he is really a girl from almost the moment he learned to talk. He’s eight now, and it’s been incredibly difficult to deal with this issue. Our church, family and friends are not supportive, but when his father and I force him into a male role, he gets so depressed that we become scared for his personal safety. When he was five, I found him in bed in the morning with his pants down. When I asked him why he slept like that, he said he wanted to make it easier for God to take his penis away. He’s ALWAYS believed he was really a girl, and that God made a mistake.

I’m sorry, but you’re missing something. I don’t know what it is, and obviously, you don’t either. I am an LCSW, and I’ve accessed lots of psych articles about brain and genetic differences in transpeople. From what I’ve seen with my son, and the other kids he plays with at Kids Like Me (a program for trans kids), I agree with the research. There’s no other way to explain my son’s early behavior. His feelings have not changed, no matter how hard his father and I push, or how much time he’s spent with counselors at LDS Family Svcs. It’s just what it is. I’ve come to accept that.

It scares me that he/she will have to deal with people like you someday.

Submitted on 2012/09/23 at 11:02 pm

I do not agree with your argument that human brains are not sex-typed. You might be inconvenienced or annoyed by the fact that male/female hormones and genetics influence the brain, but to deny it is also a form of “magical thinking”.The research I’ve read and the experiences I’ve had with my transgender child prevent me from believing any different.

I’ve noticed that most of your writing paints a very simplistic, black and white picture. In this post, it’s either “sex-typed brains explain all gender-specific behavior” or “social role conditioning explains all gender-specific behavior”. It’s all or nothing. In reality, nature working in tandem with nurture is actually the most plausible explanation for all human behavior. And do sex hormones, which have an effect on every single aspect of our bodies, magically skip over the brain? I believe that social conditioning plays a huge role in male/female performance, and when you compare outcomes between males and females, it almost always looks like two barely distinct normal curves. Performance and anatomy are two different things, and in my opinion as a mental health professional, there is something going on in the brain that guides us in some of our reproductive behavior.

My son is only 8, and our family believes in different gender roles for men and women. I actually enjoy being a mother, wearing makeup, and looking and feeling feminine. My husband enjoys doing guy stuff. Why then, has my son completely rejected his body and his role at such a young age? We’ve offered male socialization. Why does he reject it? What convinces a 3 year old boy, against all of our wishes, that he is really a girl?

Explain that to me.

49 Responses to “Mother of a “Transgender Child” Writes…”

  1. Some Fella Says:

    Transsexualism seems to be mostly about pronouns.

    … and genital butchery.

  2. Ave Says:

    I personally don’t find it mean spirited for the most part. The only time i do is when some commentators suggest trans should just die….or how one person said (on another connected blog) that males are naturally destroyers of the world. How is that any different than how society has said females are naturally less smart etc..?

    • GallusMag Says:

      No on ever said trans should die. Are you fuckin kidding me? Jesus. Not only would I never publish something like that, but no one has ever submitted such a comment for publication. Total bullshit.

    • Hel Says:

      As a trans person, this blog has made me physically nauseous. Yes, the idea that someone, anyone, but myself gets to decide how I feel about my own body and my own emotions is something that I find mean spirited and upsetting. The fact that there are people out there who would hate me, if they ever met me, on principle, before even getting to know me, is saddening. The fact that people use feminism, a movement which strives for equality between all genders, to actively rail against a community which is already among the most discriminated against groups on the planet makes me depressed.
      So yes, I find this blog mean spirited. As does every feminist friend (almost all of them cis-gendered) I know.

      • GallusMag Says:

        You think this blog “gets to decide how you feel about your own body and your own emotions”. How creepy are you?

        You must be confusing this with the “All-Powerful Wizards Which Enter My Mind And Make Me Think And Feel Things Against My Will” Blog.

        If you don’t like the blog take some responsibility for yourself and stop reading it. Or is this blog also controlling your actions as well as your feelings?

        P.S. Feminism is a movement for Women’s Liberation. We don’t care if you think we are “mean”. Take care bro.

      • doublevez Says:

        Men. It’s such a fecking shock to be treated even a teeny bit like women are treated all their lives. No rights to nothing, especially not our bodies, and then when we do attempt to draw boundaries and try to establish some *ownership* over our bodies, our lives, some penis brain starts whining we aren’t prioritizing his feelings.

      • michelle Says:

        Nobody is ‘deciding’ for you how you claim to feel about anything. However, your very next statement seems to suggest that you believe we don’t have the right to take umbrage at biological males entering female space simply because they claim to ‘feel’ that they were women or that we take umbrage at mothers claiming their small children are trans-whatever because they acted in a manner that was different from stereotypical gender roles, and that medical intervention/quackery was therefore required.

        As GM duly notes…if you claim it is so mean-spirited around here (which it isn’t), then feel free to close your browser window and go somewhere else that will coddle your speshul snowflake status…

      • Adrian Says:

        You can feel how you want.

        But I have to wonder always, what is the “I feel I am a woman” thing. Because I’m told I am a woman from the day I’m born, due to my physical characteristics (genitalia surely, and if they ever tested it no doubt chromosomes too) even if that’s something I NEVER WANTED because it’s only ever a restriction on me.

        What’s the actual definition of how to “feel like a woman” because maybe I don’t. I never did anything that “women” are supposed to do, and don’t fill that social role really, and am told constantly I’m broken and wrong for it forever, but… I’m just me.

        I’m a human born in a woman’s body. But I’m not trans*, I just fight to be myself, IN my own body (which functions well enough, as long as men don’t try claiming rights to it or say I “should” do this or that). But the “woman” category quite frankly is just some box someone tries to force on me to limit me and so I have to admit, 100% frankly, I don’t see how anyone would ever WANT to voluntarily sign up for it. Because to me it’s an oppression. And I fought it from elementary age too but as my self, I don’t want to change my physical form I want to change YOUR expectations of what *I* am.

        AND, there’s various rhetoric about how, well, supposedly “how I think you can tell, I’m a woman really inside” I’m curious about that because that would imply that somehow I “should” think one way or the other due to how I’m born, physically, phenotypically, as female, i.e. I make eggs and would have to gestate any bio-offspring. So, what is up with that?

        So yeah I guess I’m interested in what should be some objective test or whatever. How you can supposedly tell if someone “thinks like a woman” or not.

      • Adrian Says:

        And I’ll add too…

        To me, “woman” means an adult female human, in our type of species which has two sexes (yes, sexes) needed for reproduction and the two get together and make a baby. In our species then the “woman” has to gestate the kid, like any mammal too.

        But that’s all it means. I can understand how some stereotypes and bad treatment comes directly from that like you will maybe need some pregnancy/childbirth leave (potentially in your life even if you personally either don’t plan to do that or did it already, when you are applying for some job) but there’s all kinds of other silly stereotypes too all collated under “gender” and all that stuff I think just needs thrown out.

        But so, I have to ask, OTHER than the usual “adult female human” definition, WHAT, exactly, down to specifics, does the “identity” crowd say a “woman” is? Meaning, how do you determine that someone is a “woman”? Surely there’s some objective interpretation? (If not the entire discussion is completely meaningless to me, anyway.)

        So this “identity” thing, how can you tell, what does it mean, specifically concretely, to say, oh, well, I’m a woman inside. What is that?

        I suspect whatever “feelings” are involved I might not have them. Of course the world doesn’t care, all they know is I’m physically “female” and that’s what actually matters. That’s what says I don’t get to be the adventurer on Mars or at the end of the world, but rather the chattel. All of which was clear to me in elementary school, though I’m still fighting it now.

        Aside or above from ALL of that, of course is the big question overlaying all of this and the “transabled” thing too, which is, how do you voluntarily join an oppressed group? Is it possible? (You can suspect my answer.)

      • Fruitopia Says:

        Lol @ “among the most discriminated-against groups on the planet”.

        You are clueless. Trans is such a first world problem.

  3. Ave Says:

    “Why does he reject it? What convinces a 3 year old boy, against all of our wishes, that he is really a girl?”
    because society says only females should be into those things the 3 year old wants to be into. hell, it’s inherent in the connotations of the pronouns themselves

    • Bilbo Says:

      As a parent, this was my thought as well- especially in the strict gender roles practiced and encouraged by the LDS. When you present two mutually exclusive boxes, each populated with different personality traits and interests and the kid doesn’t like what’s in the box you say he should like, what else could the poor kid do?😦


  4. *facepalm* My fucking goddess! Is this woman clueless? Does she not see how fucked up her attitude is toward non-conforming children!

  5. Mark Clendenen Says:

    i think you fell and bumped your mother fucken head to believe something like that

    • GallusMag Says:

      This is a dumb stupid comment. If you are going to continue to bypass your ban – which shows a high degree of engagement with the topic- then offer something thoughtful and intelligent. This just sounds insulting and offers nothing to other readers. If this topic is SO important to you than give us the courtesy of elucidating your point of view: thoughtfully, with care and nuance and depth. Otherwise this is the last comment of yours to ever see the light if day here.


  6. “We’ve offered male socialization. Why does he reject it?”

    I’d like to know in detail, what this male socialization consists of. That could explain why he rejects it. Maybe the male socialization offered sets the bar too high for some boys who could possibly identify as boys, if the socialization were more inclusive.

  7. hearthrising Says:

    As a social worker, I feel so embarrassed by this woman’s letter. (Assuming she really is a master’s level social worker–accessing articles on the internet isn’t exactly the same as professional training and experience.) We’re not all this ignorant of child psychology.

    • doublevez Says:

      Ave it really disturbs me to see you mis-attribute the death threats trans hurl at radical feminists. Threats so serious and frightening, from obviously mentally disturbed adults and minors, that RFs have consulted police, hired security and taken other protective stances, threats so serious at least one threatener was forced to resign his gay advocacy public position to avoid legal action on the org. Women with children, home addresses posted on the trans blogs, invitations to join the poster in stalking and harassing, mobbing when out in public. Why not make it a habit to read Rad Fem Central before you make any other such gaffs here, where if I was calling it, you’d be gone. Just saying.

  8. KittyBarber Says:

    I am gagging and stuttering, reading this woman telling us how much she believes in sex-based gender roles, how much she loves bing a femme, and her man loves ‘doing guy stuff,’ and yet she can’t understand what we’re talking about?
    So, her God DOES make mistakes? And she knows how to fix them?

  9. GreatScottie Says:

    Dear Katie, if you are reading this, I just want to maybe “explain it to you” why your son has rejected the “male socialization” you have offered to him. You say your family believes in “different gender roles for men and women” What do those roles consist of? Different toys, different clothes, different colors? When your son was small, did he try to wear a dress or play with his sisters’ dolls and you told him “No, those are girl things?” Small children are binary thinkers. You say “Pink is for girls” and he thinks “I like pink, so I must be a girl.” You say “You’re a boy because you have a penis,” and he thinks “If I didn’t have a penis I would be a girl and could take ballet,” or whatever the ‘female gender role’ things he is interested in are. 98% of gender non-conforming children do not grow up to be trans. Please just allow your son to be himself without trying to force into sexual stereotypes that are arbitrary and vary wildly between cultures.

  10. Adrian Says:

    Why does the kid want God to take his penis away?

    If I had to guess (based on my own experiences as a non-conforming girl) it’s because he feels that the penis represents restrictions on who he is allowed to be, and who people will assume he is.

    As such a penis is not just a reproductive organ. A penis is a marker which means that you can’t (in the world this boy lives in) play with girls, wear dresses, play with dolls, be a homemaker, cry in public… you can add to this list. Of course he wants to be rid of it!

    The fact that the boy’s family admits to “believing in different gender roles for men and women” is what’s at the root of the problem.

    I don’t think anyone denies that hormones and prenatal influences can affect the way we think and interact with the world.

    The PROBLEM though is that people try to impose a binary (actually a hierarchy, but that’s another post) on those ways of thinking, behaving, and interacting. People insist that a certain way of thinking has to be “male” or “female.” THAT is the BS part. How about we just say it’s “green” vs. “purple” and divorce it from anything else?

    Being male means you have male reproductive abilities. Generally that means a penis and testes. We’re a sexually dimorphic species, after all. Having testes in turn means you’ll likely grow hair on your face and have a deep voice and flatter chest. That is ALL IT MEANS. (Well, aside from that fact that in 2012 it usually also means you’ll be forced into “male socialization,” which is actually the problem.)

    It doesn’t mean you have to be a breadwinner, or be “tough,” or have any of those supposedly “manly ways of thinking.” Because there ARE no “manly ways of thinking.” There is a range of ways of thinking, and behaving, and interacting with the world, and they have NOTHING TO DO with your genitalia. Insisting that there is (and must!) be some correlation of your genitalia with your “way of being” is the problem.

    Obviously the world doesn’t change overnight and so I can kinda understand why some people will think it’s easier to change their bodies so that the ignorant snap judgements of people will work out in their favor, but that doesn’t change the fact that I do not believe in the entire “born in the wrong body” analogy. It’s a clumsy way to try to adapt to a broken society, but don’t forget it’s the society that’s broken, not the body.

    Your body is yours. Your brain is yours. Whatever way those interact, is you, an allowable pattern, and there’s no need (aside from outsiders yelling about it) for anything to “match up.”

    Get rid of gender.

    • Bilbo Says:

      +1 well said!

      I’m a male. I love babies. I love taking care of kids. I love having long Socratic dialogues with pre-schoolers. I do the diapers. I rock the baby to sleep. I get stressed out when the kitchen counter is a mess. I stayed at home part-time for our first son’s first year and loved it.

      My wife, on the other hand, is usually on the couch reading or playing video games and a beer, and sometimes with the baby at her breast. She goes nuts when I’m not around to do the diapers and most of the childcare. She’s less emotional and more logical than I am, less of a sap than I am, and generally more sexual.

      This is who we are, and it suits us fine. We seem to make a good team. Only in a world with irrational and rigid gender roles could someone look at what roles we play in our relationship, call them dysfunctional, and conclude that we were really both transgendered.

      • tired old radfem Says:

        “Only in a world with irrational and rigid gender roles could someone look at what roles we play in our relationship, call them dysfunctional, and conclude that we were really both transgendered.”

        LOL! So damn true.

      • Adrian Says:

        Thanks.

        And yeah, I too managed to find someone else and marry, and yet it’d be hilarious if someone says well hey, you earn the money, and he keeps the house, and so, gee, you need to change the English language (hey, it’s one of my languages anyway!) pronouns you use and surgically reconfigure your genitalia, or what. SRSLY??

        Just. Be. Yourself!!!😀

  11. Interrobang Says:

    Dear Katie,

    If I had grown up with parents who had told me from the moment I was able to understand that everything I liked was “for boys,” I probably would have become convinced — even by the age of three! that’s practically an undergraduate degree in sex-role stereotyping! — that I was a boy. But most parents back in the 1970s didn’t automatically jump to the conclusion that because I liked “boy things” I must be “a boy in a girl’s body.”

    If gender really had anything to do with biological sex, gender would be the same everywhere in the world. And since it isn’t, game, set, and match. (And if you think it is, you need to get out more.)

  12. FeistyAmazon Says:

    Well, let’s look at the LDS church then. I dated someone who was Mormon for 5 years, just coming out of it, and she was coming back out as a Lesbian again.Normally, I date lifelong Lesbians, not newbie or reemerging ones..but there’s an exception to every rule….I studied quite a bit about that church(which also funded Prop 8, the law we’re still fighting in California banning same sex marriage, by the tune of $35 million from Utah!), and there is NO ROOM for homosexuality, it is completely forbidden. Orders come from the Prophet from the top, only men are allowed in their ‘Priesthood’, and every man can be a priest, so yes, sex roles are VERY divided, and everyone is expected to marry, if you want to get into their version of heaven. So, here we got a great and very heavy handed example of the heteropatriarchy and it’s male dominant religion.

    So she states she believes strongly in sex role differentiation. It is possible he got feminine hormones in the womb too, and feels disconnected from his body. So I do believe it is a nature/nurture thing. There ARE biological realities and differences between males and females, that are especially hormone based…but those differences are much further divided by socialization. Maybe he didn’t want to suppress his feelings, his emotions, maybe he didn’t want his hair cut off and shortened, maybe he was shamed for being ‘too sissy’ or too soft. Men and boys are not permitted their full emotional range, not allowed to cry, unless it’s extreme duress in this culture.

    I felt that way as a little girl, once I FIGURED OUT there WAS a difference in how my brother and males were treated and things they were allowed to do, and what I was allowed to do. I rebelled against all feminine and girly stuff, and WANTED to be a boy…caused much dramarama with my parents the rest of my childhood and teen years…

    We gotta STOP this sex role strict gender straitjacketing..and it starts in the department stores…when you go in there, and visit the girls and boys sections, WOW. It is so apparent, with the girls, pepto bismol pinkified everything, with the boys, soldiering, action figures and action heros in harsh primary colors. There is NO overlap! Even in the men’s sections, and women’s sections(I shop in the men’s sections) you can find t shirts both men and women can wear, jeans, ect, and in the women’s section, between the feminine clothes are often more androgynous ones for those women not as highly feminine, and a range of colors in both. Though women are always allowed more colors, than men, and men’s colors are often darker or more drab, unless you go in the hip hop or “urban wear” sections. There are alot of sections where there are overlaps. Not so in the kids’ sections….it is very, very defined.

    So take that as a societal fact kids must face, then inject a homophobic strict sex stereotyped religious upbringing which BELIEVES in conversion therapy and demonizes completely homosexuality, that they’ll want to get the girl out of the boy as early as they can(and she mentioned taking the kid to Mormon psychologists), and he will end up entirely fucked up and disconnected from his body even more so. Just leave the kid alone, and let him be himself and wear and be and do the things he likes and loves!
    -FeistyAmazon

  13. FeistyAmazon Says:

    In fact, I do believe ALOT of this transing back and forth, just like what’s done in Iran, is to FURTHER demonize homosexuality, whether Lesbianism, or gay male homosexuality….just as long as the person ‘fits into’ the sex role stereotype, they are a-ok, and preferably NOT homosexual, like in Iran, where the government will pay for sex change surgery to ‘cure you’ from homosexuality, but if you don’t take the cure, then you’re put to death? What the hell kind of choice is that? This is just done in a somewhat subtler fashion here!

    • Marie-France Lesage Says:

      Yes, gay and lesbian children who don’t conform to society’s roles are too-often threatened with the emotional death of family rejection. It’s no choice at all.

  14. Chazz Says:

    KATIE S, said: “When he was five, I found him in bed in the morning with his pants down. When I asked him why he slept like that, he said he wanted to make it easier for God to take his penis away. He’s ALWAYS believed he was really a girl, and that God made a mistake.”

    Perhaps the same folks who convinced this child that a heavenly patriarch could take his penis away, should consider where this boy got the idea that God switches body parts at night. Everyone knows that God only does that in the light of day on every third Thursday of the month
    .

  15. Marie-France Lesage Says:

    Dear Mama Katie S.,

    I think that there is a high probability that your child will grow up to be a very engaging, resourceful gay man with some great stories to tell about growing up in a Mormon household.

    As you pointed out (and I know from several Mormon friends and co-workers) your faith sub-culture encourages (as you called it) “different gender roles for men and women”.

    Your son, at a very early age (perhaps even pre-verbally), realized that he naturally prefers things in the “female” bucket of gendered stuff to the things in the “male” bucket of gendered stuff, and decided in that small-child way that he’d only be able to have/do/be things in the “female” bucket of gender stuff by becoming a “girl”.

    If at a very, very early age a child who loves pink, sparkles, baking cookies and comfort-cuddles is told over and over (by word and example) that, “Pink is for girls! Sparkles are for girls! Baking cookies is for girls! Being cuddled when you hurt yourself is for girls!” then is it any wonder that he decides “I’m a girl”?

    The odds are that if you just ignore (neither encourage nor discourage) his obsession with being a “girl”, then he eventually will grow out of it — but he very well may grow into being a happy, healthy gay male — if you, your husband, your family and church don’t screw him up.

    Just accept him and love him as he really is — no matter what. The rest will fall into place with time. You might start by telling him, once in a while, “You have a beautiful soul. I will always love you JUST the way you are.”

    • Loup-loup garou Says:

      Exactly. It sounds like this boy never heard about Option C: the one where he can like girl stuff, but still gets to keep his penis.

      Liking to cook, or wear sparkly things, or play with dolls isn’t a “reproductive behavior,” for Heaven’s sake. Those are all social behaviors, and you don’t need female plumbing to do them — or to want to do them.

      Reproductive behaviors are the ones that result in, you know, pregnancy.

      • Marie-France Lesage Says:

        People have a really hard time with that, don’t they?

        That’s why I jokingly/educationally refer to the penis as The Programming Appendage.

        I try to get people to SEE their bias against female programmers by making it into a joke, “Well obviously, after 20 years in the industry, I’ll never be successful in tech because I lack The Programming Appendage between my legs.”

        People usually chuckle, nervously.

        Sheesh. It gets exhausting after 40 years of screaming, “Being female has nothing to do with that! (Whatever that is: study martial arts, work on a fishing boat, change the clutch cable in my car, etc.) I can do WHATEVER I WANT.”

        Now here we go, yet another generation of children being brainwashed into thinking that liking x makes you a girl and liking y makes you a boy…

  16. Bev Jo Says:

    Except that females are better at many things. Females are smarter and have more empathy. Females have more dexterity and smaller fingers so are much better surgeons. Females often start organizations that help humans, animals, the environment — until it become a money-making career, and then suddenly men are in power positions. NCLR, anyone?

  17. Ashland Avenue Says:

    I’m over here trying not to scream about a STRAIGHT, MORMON woman having the absolute gall to lecture us about being hateful. Because her racist, sexist, and flamingly homophobic church isn’t hateful at all, no sirree bob! (BTW, thanks for funding Prop 8! Very non-hateful of you! By doing so, realize your church, your precious chuuurrch, made millions of enemies. For life.)

    If she’s lucky, maybe having a son who doesn’t conform to the Mormon church’s ideas of what’s male will cause her to develop, y’know, empathy and kindness toward her fellow humans. Maybe. If she doesn’t end up more worried about what the other members of her church think than the well-being of her own kid.

    But here, Katie, let me present you with a scenario to give you an idea of what we’re dealing with: Say that you are once again single. You go out and join groups to meet people. But it turns out that you’re expected to be totally okay with dating (and having sex with) someone who upon first glance appears male, but who actually has a vagina. And hell, let’s throw in breasts too. Still interested? No, you say, because after all you’re straight and that’s not what you’re attracted to? Aw, too bad! Everyone in your community now considers you transphobic and hateful, and have no reservations whatsoever about screaming that at you.

    Or, this: you’ve just gotten out of the shower at your gym, and have slipped off your towel to put on your clothes. There’s a person next to you doing the same thing. However, you can’t help but notice that this person has a penis. What, are you embarrassed? Feel threatened, maybe? Or as if your privacy has just been violated? But whyyyyyy? This person considers himself female, and so should you! If you complain to the management, everyone in your community will consider you intolerant and, yeah, hateful. You are expected to completely dismiss your feelings and everything you’ve learned over a lifetime of being female about keeping yourself safe. Because that man’s feelings matter more than yours, that’s why!

    Those are the two easiest examples, Katie. Oh, wait! How do you feel about your tax dollars being used to pay for the sex-change surgery of a convicted murderer of a woman? Doesn’t seem right, you say, especially when there are women who don’t have money for a mammogram or elderly people who can’t afford their medications? Well, I’d be careful about speaking out too much against that, if I were you. Because if you do….yep, you got it, your community will label and ostracize you as hateful.

    That’s what we’re dealing with, Katie. Don’t believe it? Then you need to keep reading. Come back when you’ve got a clue.

  18. Syd Says:

    So, I’ve been reading this blog for a little while now, and I kind of wanted to ask the author (or anyone) for some advice. If I go to a therapist, or a support group, they’d all tell me it’s okay to be trans and they’d want me to just live as a man, but I feel like that would be betraying an aspect of my born body. I’m also sorta of the mind that one shouldn’t treat a mental condition with physical changes. I’ve brought this up at a few meetings I’ve been to on ‘gender norms’ and the leader of the group, who identified as a ‘lesbian transgender woman’ (ie. heterosexual male?) just seemed to shrug it off as nonsense.
    Thing is, I still feel uncomfortable being labeled as a woman. It doesn’t happen to me very often nowadays, because for whatever reason without hormones or any interventions other than haircuts and clothing, I ‘pass’, but when it does happen, I kind of cringe.
    I don’t hold anything against women. I love women; I love masculine women, I love feminine women, I love women big and small. I just don’t enjoy being one.
    I’m uncomfortable in my female body, and I’m uncomfortable in groups of females. The gender role freaks me out to such a degree that I want no part of it. I feel like if I don’t grow my hair out, shave my legs, and dress a certain way, then I’m failing to be a normal woman, so therefore being a man is easier. Other women seem to fall so easily into being women, but I seem to be failing.
    Essentially, I want to know how to overcome these feelings.
    Also, it should be mentioned that I enjoy both men and women, and I’m currently in a heterosexual relationship with a man who’s had relationships with both genders, so I don’t even fulfill the role as a dyke woman past a superficial definition.
    Honestly I think I would rather live in a world where genders didn’t have any pretenses, where everyone could use any bathroom, dress however they felt and nobody would cared what their partner’s genitals were or who made more money, but seeing as that’s not the world we live in, I’m having trouble coping with my implied societal failure as a woman. I’d rather not end up taking hormones just to fit in with a gender role only because I meet their criteria better.
    Also therapy for this seems to be nonexistent. Therapists seem more focused on getting me looking and acting and taking up roles as my preferred gender, but that’s not what I want. I don’t want to pretend to be a man just because it’s easier, I want to know how to accept myself as a woman.
    Does anyone have any suggestions for this? Do I just need to hit a pinnacle of enlightenment and hope that eventually the self-loathing will end?

  19. Jake Badlands Says:

    Do you believe in reincarnation? Maybe, in the previous life, some people had another gender? And that is why they experience a confusion?

  20. alleee Says:

    If she really is participating in her son being trans, why does she call him “he” and “son?” I smell something fishy.

  21. alleee Says:

    …or maybe he’s confused because you told him a man looked through some magic stones and a hat to “translate” ancient writings that said he needed to like Baseball and guns.

  22. jdmarsh89 Says:

    “We’ve offered male socialization.” “our family believes in different gender roles for men and women.”

    Poor kid. Now his parents are convinced their normal, whole, healthy male child is actually a girl on the inside because he rejects and/or isn’t interested in macho male bullshit. What they’re offering is not good enough. Giving a small child a choice between two confining and problematic gender roles is not freedom. He’s 8. Of course if you offer him masculinity and he rejects it, he is likely to choose femininity since that is LITERALLY THE ONLY OTHER OPTION AND HE IS EIGHT YEARS OLD… what else is he supposed to do? My younger brother and I liked making tiny houses in the woods out of sticks and moss and stuff… it was literally our favorite thing and we were obsessed with it and believed that fairy people would come to live in the houses we had made. My parents and older neighbors thought this was a charming activity and would leave tiny “fairy” items inside the houses to make them appear to be inhabited like shoes, doll chairs, tiny handmade clothes etc. We were beside ourselves. Kids like what they like…that is their prerogative as children. Sometimes they like things that you might think are weird or dumb. My husband went through a phase at around 6 or 7 when he was very much into collecting tinfoil and making a giant tinfoil ball out of it. His mother purchased tinfoil for the purpose of adding to the giant tinfoil ball until he was no longer interested in this activity. Will he remember why he was into making a tinfoil ball? Probably not. Will he remember fondly that his mom was supportive of his weird tinfoil ball idea? Absolutely. Literally your only job as a parent is to protect and guide your child while allowing the natural development of their personality. You can teach your kid right from wrong and still allow them to LIKE WHAT THEY FREAKING LIKE. So the kid likes to watch My Little Pony or wants an Easy Bake Oven or doesn’t want to play baseball. What does any of that have to do with him being in the wrong body? Rejection of the “natural” behaviors and activities associated with a gender role does not mean there is something wrong with the child; It means that the child is smart and there is something wrong with the role.

  23. Fruitopia Says:

    “When we try to force him into a male role he becomes extremely depressed”

    ^there is your answer right there. You are shitty parents.


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