The quoted comment was submitted in response to a 4thWaveNow post about a teen who desisted from a trans identity. Below the comment is the 4thWaveNow reply.
I’m honestly so surprised. There are so many comments on here that just blow me away. It surprises me that many of you call yourselves mothers. I barely know where to begin.
First of all, the transgender community is not a “Cult.”
Transgender people surround themselves with other transgender people because they understand each other. They feel welcome and accepted, which is important. From reading these comments, I can tell that many of you are not making your home a welcoming environment. If someone isn’t transgender, it is a very difficult thing to understand. It’s like this right here. Mothers flock to each other to talk about the issues they experience with their children. Do not even begin to say that trans people are an issue. The issue is close minded people. I’m not saying that you should be open to everything, but I am saying that this is something that you should learn to accept. I don’t know the whole situation with your family, but if one day your daughter just “dropped” all of the said “masculine traits,” then I’m going to assume that she was: 1.) Nervous and unsure 2.) Realizing that it wasn’t exactly what she wanted 3.) Feeling hopeless. From reading this, it sounds like you pretty much told her that you wanted no part in her life if she made any decision. News flash- this is the child’s body, not yours. This is the child’s happiness, not yours. From reading a lot of this, it sounds like many of you are purely selfish because you can’t even begin to understand something bigger than yourselves.
Secondly, there is actually proof. Don’t believe me?
The fact that some of you said that no proof exists was out of ignorance, and I understand that. This was an easy source to find, please read it and educate yourselves a bit more.
Third, I’m not trying to attack you. I know that this is scary but you need to keep in mind that this isn’t your choice. No, I’m not saying that a child should transition at a very young age. Anyone going through this needs to take it slow. It’s a long and scary process. Then again, I wouldn’t have a say in every situation. I’m also not saying that every therapist is completely correct. The reason that therapists are so eager to label “Trans” is because they want people to understand that it shouldn’t be scary. They aren’t trying to sell you some “scary trans cult” or anything of the sort. It’s so upsetting to see mothers act like this.
You are treating the children- the young adults that you are raising- like objects. You need to listen to them. Being trans isn’t a trend. It’s becoming more known and more accepted. Please read this and think a little. If your kid just dropped their identity like that, I’m going to bet that there’s something going on that they’re not telling you. Please show them that you care. This is scary and a lot of these comments are scary. I can’t imagine being in a lot of these kid’s positions, especially with the way a lot of you bad mouth and degrade your children.
Sorry if I offended anyone, but this whole website is a bit ridiculous.
Maddy, you speak with righteous authority, presuming to judge and condemn the caring parents who have congregated here– one of the few places on the Internet where a diversity of gender-skeptical parents feel safe talking about what their families are going through. Your viewpoint is everywhere to be found—as are your efforts to shame us, and to shout down any critical discussion about major medical intervention on kids who not infrequently change their minds–as, it turns out, several of our daughters have.
You misread our critical thinking as being “scared” to accept an inevitably correct trans identity. We’ve heard everything you say umpteen times before, but it doesn’t sound like you’ve spent a minute contemplating the alternative views expressed on 4thWaveNow. Since you came over here, it might behoove you to spend more time listening to what parents on this site have to say, rather than bludgeoning us with the same stuff we all hear 24-7. You might actually learn something. Believe it or not, we aren’t actually in need of your unsolicited parenting advice. We’re smart, well read, and quite a fair few of us have formal education in child and adolescent development—which entails a lot more than simply “affirming” the self-proclaimed, temporary identities of our offspring. Oh, and yeah, by the way–we love our kids.
Here’s the newsflash: Adolescents have tried on and discarded different identities since time immemorial—one of the many well-established realities of human development which people like you choose to ignore. Permanent chemical and surgical alterations to validate those often-shifting identities? That’s a recent phenomenon.
Like so many who take it upon themselves to scold and berate the community of parents on this site, you refuse to acknowledge that there is a social contagion going on amongst tweens and teens. Perhaps your livelihood depends on not acknowledging it? Most of the parents here don’t have kids who insisted they were or wanted to be the opposite sex from toddlerhood. Instead, our daughters (and a few sons) were happy in their bodies, with no inkling of gender dysphoria, until a bout of social media bingeing, or until an entire group of their friends decided they were some variation of trans, genderqueer, or nonbinary. My daughter was one of these, and her eventual desistance was not arrived at under duress. (As if a teen can be forced to do anything; as if a teen will do something simply because her parents want her to–do you have any experience with teenagers at all?) It was undertaken freely, with time, and with the support—yes, support—of her family and friends to be a gender-defiant female without thinking she had to permanently alter her body with the two Ts—testosterone and top surgery. Extreme medical intervention was what the three gender therapists I talked to thought she should be entitled to immediately, on her own (sudden) say-so. That’s the current trend in “gender therapy” today: “informed consent,” not the careful, slow consideration you claim is the norm (again, if you had actually read much of this site, you’d see that this rubber-stamping of medical transition is rampant in the US).
If gender therapists recognize any distinction between a child who has wanted be the opposite sex since toddlerhood, and a (typically) lesbian or bisexual teen who thinks transition is the answer to her internalized homophobia or discomfort with puberty, they don’t let on. (Of course, even among the most persistently gender-dysphoric young children, most have historically desisted, but that is becoming less common now that so many are socially transitioned and puberty blocked, effectively conditioning them to believe they are the opposite sex.)
As to telling our daughters we want “no part in their lives” if they do eventually medically transition, there’s nothing in the post you responded to, or for that matter, anything on this website to indicate any of us parents are rejecting their kids as you so knowingly assert. Of course, this is just your veiled attempt to say, couched in more polite terms, that we awful parents are driving our kids to suicide because we are rejecting or not supporting them in their trans identification. Telling our kids that we won’t pay for medical transition, that they’ll have to wait until adulthood if they want to make those choices, is the opposite of not caring about our kids. It’s recognizing and understanding that trying on and discarding different identities is the work of adolescence, not a call to turn them into permanent medical patients. If people like you weren’t enabling and propagating the medicalization of the normal explorations of young people, this site wouldn’t need to exist. If organizations like Gender Odyssey didn’t market “workshops” like “Testosterone 101” and “Chest surgery Show and Tell” to teenagers, but supported young people in developing unique personalities, regardless of regressive sex stereotypes, 4thWaveNow would never have come to be. Where are the workshops entitled “How to be gender defiant without drugs and surgery”? or “Might you be lesbian instead of a trans man?” or “Medical transition has major consequences: Be very very sure before you do it”? Nowhere to be found.
If you bothered to read more of this site, you’d see that while many of us question the concept of transgender children in general, all we are trying to do (and all we can do) is protect our kids from the surgeon’s knife and the endocrinologist’s needle while their brains are still in development, until their ability to understand future consequences is more fully mature. We support gender nonconformity (what I prefer to call gender defiance) but we don’t think gender specialists, trans activists, and Internet strangers (like you) preaching to us from their high horses understand our kids (or for that matter, adolescent development in general) better than we do.
What else do you refuse to acknowledge, Maddy, besides social contagion? This: the fact that many young people with gender dysphoria used to grow up and out of it to be happy gay and lesbian adults. That many young lesbians don’t fully claim their sexual orientation until the early 20s—long after gender specialists have started them on testosterone, binding, and even top surgery. Does it occur to you that we are protecting our lesbian and bisexual daughters, as insightful parents ought to? Does it occur to you that some of the parents eager to welcome a straight, surgically and chemically altered “son” are more comfortable with that outcome than a lesbian daughter? Read some of the interviews and writings of detransitioned lesbians, on this site and elsewhere, if you think such parental and internalized homophobia is nonexistent. There are several writers who are beginning to question whether transition in many cases is actually homophobic reparative therapy in disguise. Take a look at this comprehensive post by theHomoarchy for one such blog.
As to brain science, I know the Russo study you mention very well. But it’s hardly the be-all, end-all you make it out to be. What it points to (as one sexologist has deftly pointed out) is possible brain differences pertaining to sexual orientation, not innate gender identity (for which there is no proof). I expect you’ve seen the MRI study by Daphna Joel et al, which illustrates the opposite of your cherry-picked conclusions? In fact, as Joel and colleagues found, most human beings demonstrate a mosaic of traits typical of both sexes, with some individuals falling more at one end of the spectrum than the other. Instead of medical treatment, young people should be encouraged to express themselves in any way they choose—without the oppressive gender policing inherent in defining someone as “really” the opposite sex. But trans activists and gender specialists don’t tend to cite Joel’s study much—it harbors too many inconvenient and uncomfortable implications. In any case, the nature-nurture argument can never be won by either side, since (apart from in newborn babies) it’s impossible to disentangle neurobiology from life experiences and influences.
We don’t all march in lockstep at 4thWaveNow. We don’t all see the issues exactly the same. Some of us call our kids by their preferred pronouns; some of us don’t. Some have bought binders for their daughters, while some refuse. Some are only concerned about medical transition, while others believe that everything to do with gender identity and transition is bogus and to be challenged.
But 4thWaveNow is a forum for all parents who are raising their kids without simply bending to the will and dictates of people like you, who arrogantly presume to understand the complex family lives of the parents who have found safe harbor here. Such hubris you have, Maddy. How do you think parents of lobotomized patients might have felt some decades ago, if supercilious, know-it-all therapists told them the only solution for their troubled offspring was to have a chunk of their brains removed, lest they kill themselves? Or psychiatrists who told parents they’d be “literally” killing their kids if they didn’t agree to electroshock “therapy”? 4thWaveNow parents think for ourselves. We aren’t interested in simply deferring to professionals or activists who have no love, understanding, or parental wisdom invested in our teens —only their rigid ideology and a blinkered refusal to consider that they might actually be doing harm to other people’s children. Our children. Not yours. Guess what: Some of us have experienced those harms first-hand.
Rather than telling us what we’re doing wrong with our own kids, why not try some introspection? Why not take a real look at why a website like this became necessary in the first place? Why would (mostly) politically liberal, feminist, pro-LGB parents feel they had nowhere else to turn?
Come back when you have something constructive and nuanced to add to the conversation; when you’re prepared to concede a few points. When you can demonstrate a little humility. Until then, your comments are pretty much only a candy-coated rendition of the tiresome, screeching accusations we’ve heard so many times: “YOU ARE KILLING YOUR KID!!!! You are a transphobic monster!!!!”
Thank you, God bless, and amen to 4thwavenow. Thank you for defending the parents of gender defiant children who have serious concerns about the sudden uprising of medicalization of these children. God bless you, for caring enough not only about your own child but all children who may be gender defiant. It is so sad that a blog like this has to exist. Everything you wrote in response to the commenter was SPOT ON!!! Amen to that!! Thank you for your voice and allowing mine and that of other very worried and concerned parents to be heard. I wish I was able get my point across as well as you have just done.
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Susan, I was about to make a comment of my own when I read yours, which encapsulates perfectly everything I wanted to express, and much better than I would have. So, I guess I’ll just say Amen and Ditto!
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Thank you Concerned for your kind words. It was such a blessing to finally find this site. Before finding 4thwavenow, my husband and I felt so isolated because we were not jumping on the trans bandwagon as so many others have. We are all loving, caring and very concerned parents fighting for our children’s lives. Our daughter is an adult now, but we will continue to try to stop this madness.
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Thank you for putting into words what I was feeling! I couldn’t have responded to Maddy as well because I was so upset at her accusations. I tell my kid after each therapy session (we found a good one!) and during each conversation we have about her dysphoria, “No body loves you and cares for you like your dad and I. Nobody on Tumblr. Nobody on YouTube. Nobody you know.” My daughter knows that her brain is not fully developed. She knows that medical transitioning will be on her dime should she chose it when she is an adult. She also knows that we will love her or him no matter what. So Maddy, for you to come here, my safe place, and accuse me of anything less is what’s ridiculous!
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Where/how did you find that therapist?
Via lots of hunting through therapist listings online. Followed by lots of phone calls. No therapist in today’s climate could advertise they aren’t fully onboard with pediatric transition so you have to talk to the therapist first and feel them out. Obviously you would avoid any that refer to themselves as “gender therapists.” It turns out, though, that there are still mental health professionals who believe in addressing underlying issues before “gender” concerns. You just have to find them.
Exactly what 4thwave said, through trial and error. We went through so many I started ‘interviewing’ them before even allowing them to see my daughter.
One more thing to add, when speaking to therapists I NEVER said the words ‘trans’ or ‘gender’ but really stressed ‘body image’ and general ‘dysphoria’. I also looked for therapist specializing in Eating Disorders, not that that’s what mine has, but its a mind/body connection i believe.
Thank you for the response. I’m still fighting this thing as hard if not as tactfully as I can. Unfortunately mine is 27 and is sure his only issue is his birth sex. I somehow have to break through that indoctrinated barrier.
You know why I follow my instinct and think critically about this? Because I don’t want MY daughter to be this young woman. And, while I’m on watch, she won’t be.
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Maddy, you should check out this video by Yorick – a trans man who would have killed himself if he had not gotten SRS.
He is critical of trans-trenders. Not everyone who claims to be trans is actually trans.
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This Milo person is so disturbing – watch this video and see how she smiles so big when she accuses ALL straight people of being “transphobic”, ALL men of being misogynistic, ALL white people of being racist.
And before she identified as a male (complete with a wardrobe of dresses she describes as “cute” and all her original sex organs & secondary sex characteristics intact) she identified as an anarchist otherkin.
You can’t make this stuff up.
BTW – I call Milo “she” because Mllo’s only steps toward transition are claims out of the same mouth that claimed recently to be an anarchist otherkin.
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Wow, people CAN spend way too much time thinking about themselves.
heh funny how Yorick led me here. full circle.
I am truly so grateful to have found this site. My beautiful gender defiant daughter is 18 and recently came out as “trans”. She is also lesbian and of her small close fiend group of six girls four of them have or still identify as trans. This concerns me on so many levels I can’t even begin to explain. But why?… Why? Are professionals not concerned as well? Why don’t they acknowledge the social contagion factor or the scientific studies that completely contradict trans theory or the long long list of other legitimate concerns? I feel like I am living in a nightmare right now or a surreal world where facts are not facts but transphobic bigotry. My gut and heart KNOW my daughter is not trans but I feel like just because she wears men’s clothing the rest of the world would vehemently disagree with my thoughts. Even though my thoughts are based on 18 years of observation. I no longer trust anyone in the psychological or medical field to keep an open mind and not push my daughter to medically transition. So thank you from the bottom of my heart for your insight and research and courage to question what no one else seems to question.
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This sounds like my relative who recently came out as trans – first she was an apparently happy lesbian with other happy lesbian friends – then she starting identifying as trans during her first semester at college – family found out later. Two differences – trans relative has steered the rest of the family to pro-trans “resources” who have pretty much got the rest of the family seeing me as being too rigid and not trans friendly enough.
The other thing, which no relative will even discuss, is the fact that a teacher with whom the trans relative was very close during the final year of high school transitioned within months of our trans relative. I am extremely suspicious (I wonder if this teacher might have told our relative where all the “good” – i.e., pro trans – “resources” for family could be found.
Ugh. Sometimes it’s so discouraging to read that in the 21st century, so many people believe that certain personality traits must be associated with a specific sex. Why on earth would someone *assume* that giving up on the *trans ideology* requires anyone to “drop” any “traits” other than that of holding to their archaic adherence to sexist stereotypes? Newsflash –masculinity and femininity are social constructs that are learned, not an indication of what body someone should have. It’s genderists like this who have created the social milieu that fuels kids’ feelings of being wrong-bodied in the first place. Another newsflash –telling kids they have to change themselves to be themselves does not help them do anything other than make them feel like there’s something wrong with them. It only serves to intensify and prolong their mental anguish.
Yet another newsflash: none of the researchers have proven or claimed to have proven that transgenderism is the result of brain differences. These researchers, whose work generally suffers from confirmation bias at the outset, use words like “suggests” or “may indicate.” Even the (very poorly researched) article cited is headlined as a question, not a statement. Had the journalist who wrote it lived up to what used to be his profession’s standards, he would have noted that there is considerable other research that links the exact same results with regard to the study of *homosexual* brain, and that studies exist which demonstrate that when separated by sexual attraction, only those males who are androphilic show differences with typical heterosexual males. http://cercor.oxfordjournals.org/content/21/11/2525.full.pdf+html The same can be said for differences in the perception/reaction to pheromones: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2006/05/060508_lesbian.html As one of the most recent review studies of research on the subject concluded, “the data are quite inhomogeneous, mostly not replicated and in many cases available for male-to-female transsexuals only.
As the prevalence of homosexuality is markedly higher among transsexuals than among the general population, disentangling correlates of sexual orientation and gender identity is a major problem.”
It may come as a surprise to the author of this comment, since she obviously hasn’t read much of this blog with its multitude of citations, but most of the women affiliated with this blog have done more research on the subject than the majority of “gender therapists” out there that are diagnosing these children. That we don’t buy into what they’re selling is a direct result of that research, not ignorance. Further, many of us have experienced what is now being called “gender dysphoria” ourselves. That we, by virtue of circumstance or conscious decision, did not “transition” is in no way indicative of lesser severity or suffering than many of those who are being steered towards “transition” today, regardless of what she or the self-proclaimed experts or even those currently experiencing similar suffering are encouraged to believe. The difference, it seems to me, is that rather than succumbing to those who would encourage us to further disassociate from our bodies, we came to an understanding of the forces that fueled our alienation. In so doing, we developed the resilience necessary to resist the social pressure to conform to unrealistic sex-based cultural demands that limit the full expression of human potential and self. These kids need support and reassurance, not surgeons.
(apologies for any redundancies, 4th- I reacted to the comment before reading your response or the Cantor link. My bad.)
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Maddy, we have been over-exposed to comments like yours. They tend to have a common theme: attempting to shame us. Accusations fly about us being “closed minded,” that we “should learn to accept” our kids as trans. That we need to educate ourselves. That we just need to listen to our kids and let them make these life-changing decisions.
Well, if I had followed your advice, my daughter might be injecting testosterone right now. I’m so relieved that I rejected the voices telling me to just get with the program and start transitioning her. Because she stopped feeling trans, it was just a phase for her.
It is appropriate to ask questions, to seek out underlying reasons for our children’s often out of the blue, and totally unexpected, gender dysphoria. Parents like myself just want to avoid unnecessary medical intervention for our kids. There’s nothing ridiculous about that.
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I have confidence that by avoiding the medical profession young people are increasingly more likely to desist. The aftermath of regret of what they missed, the broken relationships, the sense of lost dignity will be the issues to manage. If we could find a way of communicating to these teens they are communicating s healthy rejection of the sexualisation of young people in today’s media, keep the communication firmly in fashion and attitude, they and us could feel a lot better. I feel as if what they are communicating and how is valid, but how it is being monopolised and corrupted is wrong. In a sense the teens are right to reject social pressures in their gender defiance but wrong to believe their biology is the problem. I applaud the use of gender defiant, could the wider media please stop sensationalised labelling and apply this empowering term instead! That would be a movement for positive change that would fill the changing rooms of the High Street and empty the waiting rooms of therapists.
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Thank you for your insightful response on our behalf, 4thWave. When my daughter began identifying as trans, this website was like a lighthouse in a storm for me. Whatever my daughter decides to do with her life, and I fully accept that it is her life- not mine, I will be satisfied that she has had access to alternative views, ideas and research papers -as a balance to the ‘echo chamber’ of transgender ideology on Tumblr and reddit. That FACTUAL, SCIENTIFIC information came from the many superbly researched articles on this blog. I cannot thank 4thWave enough for the time she spends finding, digesting and disseminating important research papers – as well as calling out those who seek to pressurise sceptical parents into accepting life changing treatments for our LOVED ones . People like you Maddy, who I am assuming has no personal experience of having a child with gender dysphoria. As they say ” walk a mile in my shoes” before you are qualified to comment.
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Yes these people DO need to walk in our shoes before commenting. And I agree with all who have said that we have done more research then any therapist and councilors.
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Please tell me what you are having your daughter read. I know my kiddo isn’t trans.
Hi Lorenzo’s Oil, I have given my daughter books on Aspergirls, Delusions of Gender by Cordelia Fine, sent her links to Maria Catt’s blog and redressalert. On Tumblr. I have also used statistics and info gained from articles on 4thWave and discussed rad fem ideas of gender / sex/ stereotypes and patriarchy with her.
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I sent my daughter the “destroy your binder” video, but she only got mad at me and deleted it before opening it. It started a big fight. 😦 She has been slowly backing away from trans stuff and I was hoping she would be receptive to that type of message at this point, but no. It did lead to a discussion of binder dangers, but she has swallowed completely the lie that they are safe if you buy certain brands. It is like she thinks there is something magical about the name or the tag or the brand — but of course “these brand are safe” and “follow these directions and binders are safe” are lies which are told so binder companies can make $$$.
The fight also led to a discussion of the impossibility of girls being boys. My daughter is very intelligent, loves science and couldn’t dispute well known, common biological facts, yet she insisted she is a “female boy” for lack of a more reasonable description. I was not mentally prepared for that answer and couldn’t help but blurt out a laugh, which made her even angrier. Score zero points for me. 😦
She keeps seeming like she is backing off. She says she doesn’t want surgery or medical treatment, but in the same breath insists she is absolutely is a boy and that this is nothing strange or impossible. I guess I should drop it and be happy she says she doesn’t want surgery, but I have a hunch she is just placating me and she will dive in head first into medical treatment once she is 18 and away at college.
Maybe once the binder fiasco has blown over, I will order a few of these books and leave them around the house. It couldn’t hurt at this point.
Sorry for the long confessional, but it was therapeutic and much needed.
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Skeptical mom…. You pretty much just described our day here at home as well.
I will also have to look up those books. We actually do have testing for Aspergers (which I really really feel she has) in a couple weeks. Not soon enough
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for skepticalmom — yeah, I hear you re the binding and the worry re what happens at 18/college, both of which are fast approaching for my kid. My one hope is her innate conservative streak — God knows where it came from, certainly not from me or spouse, who were both kind of kneejerk progressives until this trans insanity burst into our lives. She’s got a pretty good bullshit detector, and she might just be emotionally strong enough to get to the point of “I’m a girl, this is how a girl looks, deal with it.” I hope.
It’s been limbo for a while with this girl, who emphatically still expresses “boy” (clothes, hair, binder, stance, effort to make a big presence despite her tiny body) but who never brings up any desire to try medical transition. In fact, that idea passed in about 6 months at age 15, and then she got interested in other things when I did not jump at it (other than letting her have the kind of hair she wanted and the kind of clothes she wanted). Her head got into a better place with friends and activities that she likes, and she stopped obsessing on the transition vids. She’s super-flat even without that binder, but somehow it’s armor to her. I hope someday she’ll be ready to cut it up like the video girl, but I can’t send her that link as yet. I know it’d just cause pushback and blow-up, like it did with your daughter, skepticalmom.
The last time I mentioned binder safety to her she just bluntly said: “I don’t care if it’s dangerous.” So that shows you the level of “adult” reasoning currently in force. (I’m just grateful she generally only wears it about 6 hours a day and gets out of it as soon as she gets home from wherever and definitely does not sleep in it. What she’ll do in the dorm when she’s surrounded by other ppl God knows, but I’ll make another effort to express the need to take the thing off before she heads away to school.)
I’m really outraged at the med/psych community who don’t actually appear to give a shit regarding minors’ insistence that they allowed to do things that are proven to be physically hazardous as long as the magic self-diagnosis ‘trans’ is brought up by the kid/teen. Really unbelievable. And I don’t think it’s any coincidence that the needs/desires of putative transwomen are generally what’s discussed and what’s driving the practice “standards,” and that the risk to the bodies of natal females from long-term T is rarely discussed. It’s all like it’s just a magic switch you can flip to become the opposite thing, and that any parental misgivings/objections simply MUST be ‘transphobia.’
Good lord, if there was a magic switch that you could prove to me was SAFE and was not going to give my kid cancer, a stroke, high blood pressure, rage issues (to which she is already somewhat prone), and EVEN MORE DYSPHORIA over time? If that magic switch existed … sure, flip the damned thing and I’ll call the kid my son and change the pronouns and the whole shebang.
But there is no magic switch. And I am never going to “accept” that the only appropriate treatment for a gender-defiant female personality is blockers/hormones/surgery. That’s a position based on RESEARCH, not on phobia and not on feels. I am never going to think this stuff is a good idea. I am always going to want a relationship with my kid and when the kid gets to the point of financial self-support then … adults get to do what they want, even dangerous things, and parents have to suck it up and hope for the best and keep communication lines open and … pray. That’s where I’ll be, at that point. If/when it comes.
As for Maddy’s contempt for us all … not worth addressing. Not worth listing all the prior health issues, psych issues, nights sitting up with the kid, hours of homework assistance, hours of transportation, hours at games and plays and other events, hours lying awake wondering how the hell to help this kid heal from stuff that happened way before “trans.” Not worth arguing.
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Maddy, how can I wrap my head around the reality that the summer before my 18-yr-old daughter suddenly came out of her room wearing a binder and announced to me she is my son, that she was showing no indication of gender dysphoria? none…at least not that I noticed since I’m a rather “gender defiant” woman myself, who I thought was showing her an example. She had however received a diagnosis of General Anxiety Disorder the summer before her announcement, which gives her an underlying mental health condition that needs to be taken into consideration…but she was still able to frolic on the beach that summer in her 1-piece women’s swimsuit, no signs of anguish. She had in fact never thought about transgender until she learned about it at school and it clicked in her anxious teenage impulsive brain as the reason she “always felt different”. Why as an older Mom who has been around the block a few times, why should I agree with my anxious teen daughter that well, yes in fact you are now my son, no questions asked, no critical thinking allowed, despite the fact that nothing ever in her childhood made me question the birth announcement that “it’s a girl!”? how is THAT being a good parent?
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Nervous Wreck, I think you have hit on something that is the root of the trans activists’ success – they offer to teens an explanation of “Why I’ve always felt different” (even though feeling different in the moment might color their memories of “always” having felt different) No teen wants to be just an ordinary teen and these trans agenda folks are using that impulse as a trap door into kids’ minds.
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An earlier blog referred to Aspergers. Unfortunately the medical profession do not see the link between gender non conformity and Aspergers thinking calling it Transgender. I truly beleive we need an alternative movement which accepts Androgeny as attitudinal, fashionable, behaviourist, creative even trendy, but does not pathologise it. Ou sellers etc need to be honest and tell young people – brain development is not complete nor organ development, no drugs or surgery before 25, otherwise dress how you like but don’t expect the rest of the world to turn on its axis to affirm you.
Our society was heading in the direction you suggest for a long time – women first starting wearing pants in large numbers by WWII, men started wearing long hair in large numbers in the 1960s. These days, men & boys, women & girls, of every age, have all different lengths of hair. This is a physical example of how our society has been trending toward individual choice over males do this/females do that.
“Women’s Jobs/Men’s Jobs” sections of the want ads were gone by the 1970s. (I was surprised, when first job hunting in the mid 1980s, that there ever had been such classified ads)
The attitude that some activities/garments/hair lengths/jobs/recreational activities are “male” or “female” is a step backward that trans activists have been foisting upon society. They use their claims of having played with dolls as “evidence” of being female.
When I was a kid, I played space ship while wearing mini skirts. I was good at math and loved makeup. I was part of the 5% of Star Trek convention attendees who were girls (and were not treated like eye candy, but welcomed as fellow Trekkies.)
My husband says I have autistic characteristics (the term aspergers is no longer used, it’s all autistic spectrum now). I never questioned my femaleness – I think that the social contagion theory is much more plausible than the autism theory. But maybe that’s just me.
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Thank you, also, 4th Wave and the other perceptive commenters. I always learn so much when I come to this site!
I have to say, I started to lose it in the first paragraph of Maddy’s comment. No, Maddy, I don’t “call myself a mother,” I AM a mother. I understand that you believe that identifying as someone or something, is actually more valid than BEING that thing. I understand that trans ideology is that simply believing that a particular physical state exists, is tantamount to, if not superior to, that state existing in fact. I also understand that the trans lobby fervently believes that if everybody else doesn’t buy into their subjective beliefs about what they are or are not, somehow that is “doing violence” to their fragile egos and self-worth.
I don’t have a subjective belief that I am a mother, regardless of the evidence. I am one, and I can’t begin to tell you how offensive it is for anybody to question that.
Saying that we “call ourselves mothers”? When we are the people who went through morning sickness, hours if not days of excruciating labor, birth, babies who nursed all night, wrecked abs, sleepless nights, crazy days, toilet training, toddler-hood, sippy cups, pre-school, more recitals and school plays and track meets than you can shake a stick at? We, who loved and supported our children through Cub Scouts and AWANA and bassoon lessons and put 100,000 miles on our beat-up mini-vans, carpooling for years of our own lives? We, who sweated grade school and high school and the SAT’s and college admissions and prom and friends and frenemies? We, who didn’t go on the trips and vacations and buy the cool stuff, gave up privacy and couple time and prioritized our kids’ needs over our own, for years on end, to give them what they needed?
Oh sweetie, you can’t BEGIN to understand the investment that a mother makes in her children. You can’t BEGIN to fathom how much we care and what a journey it has been, for each and every one of us. Yes, we’re not all the same in how we’ve done what we’ve done. But what we share is a commitment – that I believe may be the strongest attachment that exists on this earth – to our children’s well-being and happiness. This is why we are here. Because we love our children with a fierce kind of love you can’t even imagine.
To paraphrase what I hope your own mother has shared, or will share, with you: just wait. Because, one thing we also learned, as mothers, is that we always have to forgive our children their childish notions, and know that one day they’ll learn the same hard and beautiful lessons we learned. So may it be with you, Maddy.
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This was an absolutely beautiful reply 4th wave now!
And you’re right! There is exactly zero information out there now contrary to the official dogma! There are no discussions, no dialogue, and worst of all, every question, no matter how innocent is met with the well practiced mantras of trans, trans, trans! (And the tacid understanding that just asking makes you a monster capable of the worst evils!)
I was a parent to a child with issues (not trsns) that the establishment tried to squash like swatting flies with a hammer… for his entire childhood, his father and I fought tooth and nail to protect him, and to help him learn to deal with his issues in a healthy and productive manner, we didn’t always succeed but in the end he did emerge a strong, healthy and happy man who’s made me a grandmother twice over now.
So, I do get exactly where you and every other parent on this site is coming from. There IS an appalling wave of gender issues being lumped in as the same as transsexual and that is being treated as the same both chemically and surgically and it has to stop! Not only to save these lives so rudely derailed but to save the lives of the tiny minority of actual transsexual kids who WILL be thrown under the bus when the backlash happens…
My only goal is to see that they are still able to access treatment and that it’s not withdrawn as an option because it was so wrongfully applied to children for whom it wasn’t intended!
And both out-comes are possible if research ever gets around to focusing solely on the kids who insist from toddlerhood onward and what causes it, instead of rubberstamping an ever growing list of batshit crazy!
Something I’m not holding my breath over, because if a verifiable physical diagnosis is ever found it will immediately invalidate the legions of powerful white male late transitioning transvestites as not being in anyway the same as a kid trapped in the hell of a freudian id that says they are not the sex they are physically!
Maddy, the parents on this site are brave and fierce. Everyone — doctors, therapists, and yes, people like you — is telling them to follow the prescribed path of affirmation. But while the other parents around them are doling out the cyanide-laced kool-aid to their own kids, the parents here are willing to stand against the tide and ask for a more thoughtful approach. I’m sorry to invoke such a frightful analogy. But the research — the good research — does not indicate that the long-term psychological aftermath of transition is so sunny.
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Did you take your daughter to a therapist or psychologist to help her desist?
She had a therapist who worked with her on other emotional issues. Anything related to transition was simply not part of the therapy, pro or con. There was no attempt made by the therapist to get her to desist. It was simply not on the table either way. She trusted and liked the therapist which of course was very important in the process.
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That’s what I am having a hard time finding. Someone who will not address the transgender part but work on herself. But we are not finding it. Everyone’s on the pill… At this point we do better without a therapist but she needs to continue Meds. I don’t know where to go.
So only choices that conform to the trans activists’ agenda are choices that are to be respected.
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Thank you 4thwave for highlighting this comment from ”Maddy” and for your superb response. As you know I am not the mother of a trans identifying child, but I am a mother of children affected by trans issues. If I may, I would like to give my own personal response to ”Maddy”.
Maddy, in your comment you do not introduce yourself or explain your interest in trans issues. Therefore, I am going to make some assumptions about you based on what you say here. From your name I will assume that you ”identify” as female. Some phrases leaped out at me, because i have heard them before at close quarters. Phrases that I have heard from my ex husband who, just about 3 years ago, told me that he was a ”woman” all along; despite 30 years of marriage and the production of children. So, yes, I too am a mother, and one who will defend my children to the end; just like the other mothers who write and comment here. Maddy I will assume that you are a late transitioning man, who seeks to ”educate” us non trans, gender critical mothers.
”Do not even begin to say that trans people are an issue. The issue is close minded people. I’m not saying that you should be open to everything, but I am saying that this is something that you should learn to accept.”
”LEARN TO ACCEPT”. For my ex the acceptance of him as a woman by his entire family was our only path to happiness. Something that had been swirling around his head since adolescence, and which we were not prepared for had to be taken on board, accepted and broadcast to all and everyone straight away. No time for shock, disbelief, grief, let alone questioning. Maddy, I am open minded, but that does not mean I am non critical. I too have read and read and talked to others. The more I hear of young people affected by this trend (and I do not use the word ”trend” loosely) the more I realise that the enormous increase in trans identifying young people is fueled by a CULT; by people like you and my ex who seek to validate themselves as ”born in the wrong body” but prevented from realising their ”true selves” because of ”close minded people”.
”You are treating the children- the young adults that you are raising- like objects. You need to listen to them”
I have listened to my children in the depths of their bewilderment. I have battled to make sure that their school lives were not disrupted by their father’s ”coming out”. I have not bad-mouthed their father. They still have a relationship with him; but they are the ones who call the shots. They put in place where and when they are happy to be seen with him. One day I will explain autogynephilia to them.
”This is scary and a lot of these comments are scary. I can’t imagine being in a lot of these kid’s positions, especially with the way a lot of you bad mouth and degrade your children.”
Yes, it is scary. Bodies are being mutilated, children are being rendered sterile before they even have the capacity to appreciate the richness that role will give to them in their later lives. Breasts are there to feed children. They are not sexual objects to be lusted after. Girls should be proud to become women, to develop and mature.
Maddy, if you had been a female teenager, you would know how difficult it is to go from the freedom of childhood to sexual object for the male gaze. I am a mother of boys and can only imagine the difficulties the other mothers who have sought safe-space here have.
Finally, you said………
”Sorry if I offended anyone, but this whole website is a bit ridiculous.”
This website is not ridiculous, and yes, you have offended many people; but I don’t believe that you are sorry for one minute. Continue to project how you feel onto young children who do not fit gendered stereotypes. It makes you feel better. And that is what matters, isn’t it Maddy?
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Maddy, my daughter was approached by a 25 year old female to male with a full beard (FTM)non student in her first year of college. She had never been on a date with a man before and was wearing dresses until she went to college (although she hated dresses and so do I to an extent). To be clear, I am her female birth mother who gave her her “given name”. In May when she came home, she cried her eyes out. We had no idea what was going on and contributed this to the stress of college. A month later before her 2nd year of college, she was picked up by this person and began living with her/him ever since. She has ditched her family, (her grandparents understood nothing), skipped our family vacation and instead went on an internet rampage against us as haters, collecting money on the premises that we through her out. Guess who set up that page? Not her. Just a couple months later, she was taking testosterone from a gate keeper psycho here in Cincinnati. University of Cincinnati has a club as to how to get hormones on demand, how to declare independence from parents and get government funds to boot. The set up is similar to the Third Reich. If this isn’t a cult what do you call that? It seems to me that these people want to isolate her from her family so that she thinks we don’t care, a big part of this fantasy world she lives in. Now, she thinks she’s a man, as if men have it so much easier than women while I sift through the pictures of my beautiful daughter’s great life of undying love. She is putting her education, her family relationships and in her case her LIFE (she has family history that includes strokes among others) in jeopardy. And guess what? She had social anxiety disorder, trauma and severe depression before she entered college. She was being treated for all of that. The colleges have a way of getting these children away from their parents and building new cult members. It is a cult. There is no other way our daughter would throw away her sister, her brother, her grandparents, and most of all loving parents who now feel like they have been hit by a truck and just now leaving the hospital without any understanding of what happened. Pray Maddy. I will add you to my prayers. You are being used. Read “Safe People”. It will give you some answers. I will add you to my prayers (and of course, you are an atheist too?) but I will. It’s called
instructing the ignorant. Our daughter is so mature she can’t even come home and face her family and explain any of this without this person by her side coaching her.
Thank you 4th Wave for this blog and your eloquent reply to Maddy. My teenage son came out as MTF trans a year ago. In an effort to understand this “out of the blue” proclamation, I have researched, read blogs, and searched for support in an effort to encourage him to preserve his good health and wait until he is a bit older to choose this course. While I was able to find plenty of Maddys out there who told me I was closed-minded and should immediately jump on this band wagon without any thought or question, I was only able to find one very conservative opposite point of view. It was interesting, but not helpful in encouraging my son to think critically. Thankfully I finally found 4thWaveNow, which is packed with critical thinking and non-biased research. I’m so very grateful.
My son’s friends, school, and teachers have all told him that his parents are closed-minded hateful bigots who do not care about him. I love this child with all my heart, and want him to avoid optional surgery and commitment to a lifetime of medication until he’s had a chance to resolve other mental health concerns and mature. I want him to determine his own course in life, be gender defiant, and avoid the box that this trans movement is trying to shove him into. How can this possibly be hateful? It would certainly be easier to allow my son to do whatever he wished, but it would not be responsible or loving. My goal is to give him other points of view so that he is making a fully informed decision. The trans activist cheering squad only wants to broadcast very targeted information and I question any group who discourages assessment of the full picture when advocating for such a radical change in body, health, and life.
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I thought it was very interesting, in looking at the “detransition” blog of Maria Catt, that as a prospective transition-er, she was coached to view any and all parental input through the lens that anyone who raised the slightest concern or caution was doing so solely out of trans-phobia. It’s probably much easier to just put your head down and barge ahead, refusing to diverge from your chosen course, and ignore all your possible mis-givings, if you are persuaded that nobody except your “new trans friends” really loves you or has your best interests at heart. It certainly does seem as if the “trans cohort” or whatever you want to call them, is mostly interested in getting others to affirm their choices and swell their numbers. They see nothing wrong in rupturing normal family ties, and will not hesitate to get between a person’s loving relatives and friends, and the person, to convince them that nothing that is said could possibly be motivated by love or disinterested concern for that person’s well-being.
I would certainly think that any reasonable or caring adult would not advise a young person to ignore his or her parent’s advice and concerns. That seems the hallmark of an irresponsible and selfish approach towards advancing one’s agenda.
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enduringspark, I’m so sorry you’re going through this.
I have been a life-long political liberal (believing in such currently unpopular things as the value of evidence, the rule of law, innocent unless proven guilty in court, due process, and most important of all, reality trumps what people make up in their heads) and I am also being treated like I’m closed-minded. The ironic thing is the people in my family (with a recently-announced trans-relative) I am the one doing research. They think they’re doing research, but that is going to the organizations & literature that our trans relative points them to. I’ve been going to sources outside that, especially medical sources. But I’m the closed-minded one. Yeah.
Anyway, I don’t have any advice, since I haven’t been able to get through to anyone the concerns I have. All I can do is to tell you that you are not closed minded, not bigoted, not wrong, and not alone.
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So the only choices that deserve respect are the choices that align with the trans activists’ ideas of how things should be. How utterly charming.
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I was still going back and forth on what exactly I really thought about this whole explosion of people claiming to be trans when I discovered this blog last year. In time, with enough reading here and at other trans-skeptical blogs, I realized my gut feelings were right and this is a very disturbing trend, not supported by either history or science. While we have ample, obvious evidence, e.g., of gay people and left-handers throughout history, there’s zero evidence of things like little boys screaming when asked to start wearing breeches, girls demanding they go by male names, or children insisting they’re the wrong sex. There have always been gender-defiant kids who identified more strongly with the stereotypes of the other sex, but nothing like you see today. Since I’ve grown so much as a skeptic (a lowercase skeptic, not a rigid uppercase Skeptic), I’ve been able to apply those principles of skeptical inquiry towards the whole trans trend.
This really is social contagion, and something many young people would grow out of if left alone. People with true, lifelong, overwhelming body dysphoria would be recognized as distinct from all these young people who announced a trans identity out of the blue after a social media binge, with lots of stereotypes cited. I’d compare it to how body modification became popular and mainstream in the West in the Nineties. Suddenly a lot of kids were showing up at my high school with body piercings, and I’m sure many of them retired those piercings long ago. I, meanwhile, had wanted a pierced nostril since age 12, finally had it done at age 23, and couldn’t imagine myself not having this piercing after 13 years and counting. I also fell in love with the whole culture and history of body modifications while I was researching nostril piercing in the months leading up to mine, and that love is still there. It’s a genuine interest, not something I only liked when it was trendy. If only the consequences for growing out of a transtrender identity were as minor as a little scar and some money gone.
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Excellent distillation. Thanks.
Carrie-Anne, Your analysis is spot on.
When I point out the lack of these behaviors in history, family says that’s because until the present time, there was no method for changing sex.
Except there were people who lived some parts of their lives as the opposite sex, via opposite sex name & clothes – exactly as those MTTs who don’t have surgery but want full access to women’s and girls’ rest rooms, changing rooms, locker rooms, homeless & DV shelters. Example: Mary Reed was a pirate named Mark Reed. Most women who did the cross-sex identity for a brief period of life for a specific purpose (Mary Reed to protect herself from sexual advances by pirates who weren’t her captain boyfriend, girls who joined the army during the Civil War, to be near boyfriends)
There’s no historical record of men claiming to have a womanculus inside their heads – super interesting considering the fact that for thousands of years, many many people believed everyone had a homunculus inside their heads running their bodies like ships. But the homunculus was *always* envisioned as the same sex as the body!
As for the idea that trans feelings weren’t expressed because of a lack of a way to do something (like hormones & surgery), people long before the Wright Brothers reported desires to fly like birds.
I don’t see a lot of research about how these concepts of identity suddenly burst into our society and rapidly gained such traction. And I don’t mean just psychology or social science, taking the claims of being trans at face value, as if appearing in a vacuum.
I’m especially thinking of a recent article I read where a trans person encourages teens to reach into their memories for times when they felt like they didn’t fit. I bet scientists who study memory would have lots of useful input. , People need to know how what what a person recalls as a “memory” is not a video recording, but a mashup of previous instances of recalling that event, things other people have said about the event, and the emotions the person is feeling in the moment of recalling the event. A sad person will report an event as sadder than the same person will report the same incident if the person is in a happy mood at the moment of recall – and people who are sad are likelier to spontaneously recall sadder incidents int heir lives, creating a vicious cycle.
Then there’s the way teens so desperately want to unique and not ordinary, and the way social contagion moves more easily among communities of girls. Factitious disorder happens far more often in places like convents and girls’ boarding schools, which shows that people can absorb and enact things that are not in their best interests, and not healthy.
Our society has made an absolute virtue of accepting what people say about themselves. For an unpopular kid, categorizing herself as a type of person whom a loud segment of society demands be treated with a specially whopping dose of acceptance, this could look like a ticket out of unpopularville.
I’d love to brainstorm other science that might help illuminate how this happens and how it can be counteracted.
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“Our society has made an absolute virtue of accepting what people say about themselves. For an unpopular kid, categorizing herself as a type of person whom a loud segment of society demands be treated with a specially whopping dose of acceptance, this could look like a ticket out of unpopularville.”
A total out for our unpopular kids… The transgender activist have definitely found a way in to our kids. And the medical professionals are now just affirming it rather then helping our children. A sad world.
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My transition was more than 30 years ago. Current trends and attitudes fuelled by a PC straight jacket leave me confused sometimes because my experience was along the lines you appear to advocate on this blog.. Step by step making sure at each stage the correct decision was being made. Currently everything trends towards instant/easy everything. However, with a transition in either direction act in haste regret at leisure is the meme. At least that is how it seems. Against the PC backdrop any urges towards caution invokes screams of phobia fuelled hate. I fail to see how any of this is helpful to the children we love unconditionally. Surely all any parent desires for their sons and daughters is for them too become happy well adjusted adults. A friend and mentor once said to me “There are far more transexuals in the world than most people realise but far fewer than most transsexuals think there are” It would seem there are those amongst the TG fashionistas who would benefit from understanding that statement. Sex is different to gender and sexuality has nothing to do with either.
Reblogged this on sketcher563.
The response here and the comments below echo everything I am feeling a mother of a 13 year old daughter who determined she was trans a couple of weeks ago, not long after her closest friend decided to start going by an androgynous name and masculine pronouns (although ironically, that child’s parents are not college educated and do not have a strong identity as progressives, so that child has not told her parents this and still presents as female in dress and appearance overall). My daughter has been struggling with anxiety and depression since she hit puberty and this year began engaging in self harm and then when she stopped that she tried a bout of not eating. She also determined around age 12 that she was bisexual. But never before now (and a crazy amount of time on Tumblr) did she express any discomfort with her sex or gender — she clearly has a lot of shame and a strong instinct to self harm, but she was never a tomboy — was a feminist and attracted to androgyny, but like the tight clothes, heavy eyeliner and dark lipstick variety. Like good feminist parents we offered her all kinds of activities as a child and it was she who jettisoned co-ed baseball and soccer for ballet class. It’s extra bizarre because she’s anti-gender essentialist, so she thinks that the only thing the should be “male” is her body — the fact that her personality traits and interests are not in any way stereotypically masculine is really no problem, because gender is a social construct. Thus it’s not her gender that is the problem apparently, it’s her sex — her perfectly healthy female body is just wrong. Anyway, I know that this sounds super familiar to all of you because I have been reading your comments daily and gaining some solace from the fact that I am not alone, and that I am not some crazy transphobic Mom in denial. I am a mother who loves my child unconditionally and has to follow what I believe to be in my child’s best interests based on evidence and my knowledge of her. I have a good therapist for her who is also focused on addressing her underlying mental health issues now, and thinks that transition is by no means indicated at this time. Happily she is also someone who works with LGBT people, and so my daughter cannot write her off as simply transphobic.
Anyway, having taken that off my chest, I am wondering what you all can recommend for maintaining your own mental health. I have had very little sleep since this revelation from my child and I feel agitated and nauseous pretty much all the time. Does this pass? In my head I tell myself to let it go, that we have almost 5 years before she can make any decisions that can’t be undone and I just need to love her as I always have. But I feel such dread and sadness and I am a bit of a wreck. Any tips from others going through this are appreciated. My husband sees things as I do, but seems to be better at compartmentalizing than I am.
I don’t think the agitation and nausea will ever really go way while you are going through this. I kind of feel that’s a good thing…..it shows that you love and care and worry about your daughter. I too suffer from the same as yourself. I exercise more now. That helps, but I also have a slightly larger glass of wine at night too……that helps also. Work is my “safe place” for now, as my co workers have no idea what’s going on with my daughter. I leave my baggage in my car when I arrive, and pick it back up again when I go home. Some day I will tell my co workers, or they may find out through the grape vine. Either way, I know they will all be sympathetic, and supportive. For now, it’s nice to have a place where I can put it all aside, because it is overwhelming and heavy. I hope you can find that place someday so you are no longer losingsleep. Stay well.
Hi Susan – Sorry to hear you are in the same boat as the rest of us. The whole thing just sucks!!! It is a rollercoaster of emotions.
At the moment, there is a calm around me. I am trying to focus on the fact that I, like you, have some time. (Mine is 15…about to turn 16) My kiddos is a good person. She has friends. She does well in school. She has a drive to go to college and talks about getting her doctorate and becoming a professor. She even has a boyfriend…a biological boy. (I think he thinks he is gay…lol)
Either way, it is a romantic connection with another person. A kind person at that!
When I am in my good place, like I am today, I try to imagine that all of these good things continue to be her truth when she is an adult….a good person, with friends, a husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend, and a great career. I am beyond hopeful that she comes to grow out of this trans thing, but if not, when in my good state of mind…I think…ok…if this does happen to be her truth, then let her be a successful trans-man…
Like I said… I am having a glass 1/2 full day…lol
For the nights I can’t sleep…I make sure to have a good book by my side. Helps me stop hyper focusing on the shit I can’t fully control.
Good luck and try to focus on the positive about your daughter.
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Thanks to both of you for the compassion and advice. It reminds me how comforting it was to be in a new Moms group and know that everyone else was struggling and obsessed and sleep deprived as well. I need to remember that adolescence is a lot like the infant and toddler years in terms of how much growth and development is taking place and try to be patient and calm and just take it one day at a time.
I am so glad that I have found this site! Thank you. Recently my sister announced that she felt like a boy and thought she should have been a boy. She is 11 years so is only just figuring out her body etc. Over the past 2-3 years she has preferred to like things which are more stereotypically considered ‘boy’ activities. She prefers to wear baggy clothes and likes video games and sport activities which are typically ‘boyish’. I feel it is just her liking things which are considered more ‘boyish’ and of course feel there is nothing wrong with this. I have asked her when she started having these feelings and she said last year she insisted she hadn’t been on any sites but admitted to going on one after I had questioned her several times. I feel it is mostly her thinking that these stereotypes mean she should be a boy, as she had never said anything during her childhood. It has been really hard to deal with as my parents do not know and this would be very difficult for them. For now I have restricted her access to the internet so she isn’t on YouTube etc which have a clear agenda I feel. I have no clue with parenting as I am only a young adult myself. But am hoping that my gut Instinct is right in saying that she is just going through a confusing time.
Hi San, and welcome. I’m sorry to hear about your sister. Are you raising her, rather than your parents? If so, where are your parents? Has your sister been through a traumatic situation regarding your parents? A traumatic experience, such as a separation from parents, or the death or incarceration of a parent or close family member, is definitely something to pursue with a psychotherapist, as trauma is connected to some cases of transgenderism, as is autism, homosexuality, sexual harassment or sexual assault, social contagion, and various psychological conditions such as ADHD, OCD, PTSD, etc.
Hi, thanks for your comment. I am not raising her but I come from a Very strict family, my parents are quite old fashioned and I’m not sure they would be able to deal with this situation and I feel it would cause a lot of grief to everyone in the family. I am trying to help my sister as much as possible. There has been no abuse towards her but i think there could be some underlying issues (we grew up with my parents fighting constantly) which need to be resolved. I would be happy for her to see a psychotherapist but I am worried that this may just perpetuate her belief that she should be a boy. When she was young she was carefree and didn’t exclude typicall girly things. And didnt express at a young age that she should be a boy. This is only very recent, where she has stopped wearing girly clothes and liking girl activities and started becoming more tomboyish. I think maybe she has googled being a tomboy and this is where her ideas of thinking she should’ve been born a boy has come from.
San, you should be commended for taking good responsible care of your sister. Limiting her internet access is a great start. Be wary of sites such as tumblr. Your description of your sister sounds so similar to that of my youngest daughter. I wish I would have known about this site years ago. I suggest that you monitor your sister very closely. Educate yourself as best as you can. I wish you well as this is a very difficult road that you are traveling.
Thanks Susan for your kind words. It helps knowing there are other families experiencing this and that you’re not alone. Hoping everything goes well with your daughter as well.
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