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C/o trans people as young children


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I know a kid who is very similar - also has asked from a very young age to 'chop it off'. Got good counselling with gender dysphoria clinic, has decided to not do anything right now but leave options open. Wears dressed sometimes, other times not. Totally accepted in the community - luckily has a name that is not gender specific. Counselling started at an older age though, say 10. 

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2 hours ago, Melissa Louise said:

There's no genetic, hormonal or other medical test for being transgender, fyi.

Gender dysphoria is diagnosed by a psychiatrist. 

True, but if someone is genetically female but appears male genetic testing would reveal that.  It’s very unusual but not unheard of.

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If my child were saying these things, at that age, I'd start by telling him that a p3nis doesn't make him a boy. I'd show some anatomy books, the difference between m/f, and explain that he's also a boy on the inside. Perhaps that would help with accepting this external *thing*.

That said, I wouldn't rule out that prenatal hormone levels may have done *something*...but not that he's actually a girl. More so that brain development could have been affected. 

Also, the above is what I would do for a few years. If the issue persisted, then I'd change my approach (perhaps seeking counseling). 

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1 hour ago, lauraw4321 said:

What point are you trying to make by posting this study? It doesn't list a single case where someone appeared to be male but was genetically female, the scenario under discussion.

It does list a number of chromosomal abnormalities, including women with three x chromosomes or a single x chromosome, two males with two x and one y chromosome, ten males with one x and two y chromosomes, and two females with 46,XX/46,XY chimerism. 

Some of these may result in intersex conditions where the expressed phenotype may include both male and female characteristics, but the abstract at least doesn't suggest any of the subjects presented as intersex.

 

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1 minute ago, maize said:

What point are you trying to make by posting this study? It doesn't list a single case where someone appeared to be male but was genetically female, the scenario under discussion.

It does list a number of chromosomal abnormalities, including women with three x chromosomes or a single x chromosome, two males with two x and one y chromosome, ten males with one x and two y chromosomes, and two females with 46,XX/46,XY chimerism. 

Some of these may result in intersex conditions where the expressed phenotype may include both male and female characteristics, but the abstract at least doesn't suggest any of the subjects presented as intersex.

 

The purpose of my response was that someone posted that the incidence of sex chromosome abnormalities was very rare. My response is that it’s not rare. It’s one of the most common chromosomal abnormalities. The effects of these differences are not fully understood and likely along a spectrum. 

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12 hours ago, Janeway said:

The remarks about having his penis cut off are concerning. The trans or even gay adults I have known never spoke that way as kids. I completely support the LGTBQ community, so this is not a rejection of being trans. 

The trans adults I know absolutely DID feel this way about their bodies. They were disgusted by their sexual parts. 

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8 hours ago, Carol in Cal. said:

True, but if someone is genetically female but appears male genetic testing would reveal that.  It’s very unusual but not unheard of.

 

7 hours ago, Melissa Louise said:

It's very unlikely. 

 

15 minutes ago, lauraw4321 said:

The purpose of my response was that someone posted that the incidence of sex chromosome abnormalities was very rare. My response is that it’s not rare. It’s one of the most common chromosomal abnormalities. The effects of these differences are not fully understood and likely along a spectrum. 

These are the posts you are responding to. The study you linked did not include a single case of someone who was genetically female but appeared male.

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2 hours ago, alisoncooks said:

If my child were saying these things, at that age, I'd start by telling him that a p3nis doesn't make him a boy. I'd show some anatomy books, the difference between m/f, and explain that he's also a boy on the inside. Perhaps that would help with accepting this external *thing*.

That said, I wouldn't rule out that prenatal hormone levels may have done *something*...but not that he's actually a girl. More so that brain development could have been affected. 

Also, the above is what I would do for a few years. If the issue persisted, then I'd change my approach (perhaps seeking counseling). 

But don’t all the age appropriate books show the differences between male and female as basic anatomy differences? Boys have a penis, girls grow breasts and have babies, and so on?

I'm curious what you think  does make a boy (or girl) on the inside? So many of us here have said we don’t feel like a “woman”; outside of patriarchal cultural conditioning, I honestly couldn’t tell you what the difference is, or if there even is one.

Although, just because I can’t relate doesn’t mean I don’t absolutely believe people when the say they feel like a woman (or man, or neither, or both). To me, a kid who clearly has an inborn, innate sense that his body doesn’t match who he actually is needs to be listened to and heard. 

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16 minutes ago, MEmama said:

But don’t all the age appropriate books show the differences between male and female as basic anatomy differences? Boys have a penis, girls grow breasts and have babies, and so on?

I'm curious what you think  does make a boy (or girl) on the inside? So many of us here have said we don’t feel like a “woman”; outside of patriarchal cultural conditioning, I honestly couldn’t tell you what the difference is, or if there even is one.

Although, just because I can’t relate doesn’t mean I don’t absolutely believe people when the say they feel like a woman (or man, or neither, or both). To me, a kid who clearly has an inborn, innate sense that his body doesn’t match who he actually is needs to be listened to and heard. 

I'm speaking of purely physical internal differences, since he seems fixated on his external body part. I'd show that girls have internal reproductive organs that are different than boys. That there are also differences in genetics/chromosomes and hormones. 

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4 minutes ago, alisoncooks said:

I'm speaking of purely physical internal differences. I'd show that girls have internal reproductive organs that are different than boys. That there are also differences in genetics/chromosomes and hormones. 

So your explanation to a six year old would be that he can’t be a girl because he doesn’t have specific internal organs? 
 

I guess your view of gender is vastly different than my own. 

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6 minutes ago, MEmama said:

So your explanation to a six year old would be that he can’t be a girl because he doesn’t have specific internal organs? 
 

I guess your view of gender is vastly different than my own. 

No. I'd just try to expand his idea of boy anatomy beyond his external bits (because of the whole "cut it off" fixation). 

And I'm sure my view of gender does differ from yours. I wasn't trying to debate yours. I was just stating to the OP what I'd do if faced with her situation. 

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4 minutes ago, alisoncooks said:

No. I'd just try to expand his idea of boy anatomy beyond his external bits (because of the whole "cut it off" fixation). 

And I'm sure my view of gender does differ from yours. I wasn't trying to debate yours. I was just stating to the OP what I'd do if faced with her situation. 

Sorry, I wasn’t trying to debate either. I just wanted to better understand. Thx.

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29 minutes ago, MEmama said:

So your explanation to a six year old would be that he can’t be a girl because he doesn’t have specific internal organs? 
 

I guess your view of gender is vastly different than my own. 

I think she is talking about biological sex. Which actually is a real thing and the determinant of maleness and femaleness.

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https://www.nature.com, my kindle is not copying the whole link and so I do not know why, had an article based on a European study that has confirmed XXY births to be 1.47 per 1000 live births, and XYY to have increased to 2.91 per 1000. It is article 5201956.

In a population of 330,000,000 people puts the prevalence of XXY at 485,100 individuals and XYY at 960,300. Confirmed by DNA sequencing.

The consequences of this are not fully understood. But the total means approximately one million folks in our society have a chromosomal issue that can cause gender dysphoria, and this is not the only genetic issue that can cause it. This is not quite as rare as some would like to believe.

 

Also the Taylor Francis Journal of Sexual Health has an article in 2019 issue 4 about the effects of prematurity on psychosocial development. It does not specifically reference gender dysphoria, but does show some evidence that prematurity has a definite effect on psychosexual development, and again, is not fully understood at this time. This makes sense to me as medical advancements have made it possible for more and more premature births to survive and live to adulthood. It seems quite probable that gender and sexual health, like any other medical issue, may be affected by premature birth, and could be a contributor to what appears to be a rise in gender dysphoria.

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I may be confusing kids, but I thought this child had mosaic T21.  My understanding is that, if so, the karotype testing that would have confirmed that diagnosis, should have shown the number of chromosomes and the types of sex chromosomes.  So, it seems like something that impacts that numbers (e.g. XXY, or genetically female but male in external appearance) would already be known.  

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16 hours ago, Melissa Louise said:

Most children with this presentation do struggle at times, but grow up to be cis gay, lesbian or straight but GNC. That's not really disputed, even in the literature. 

For a small % of children they'll persist. 

There's no reason currently for OP to treat her ds as one of the small %. There's no way to tell. He might be; he probably won't be. 

He doesn't currently need 'treatment'. Just kind, supportive parenting tolerant of being gender non-conforming, tolerant of possible later homosexuality, and a watchful eye in case things change. 

 

You use the word "most" here, but do not link any kind of study or evidence to promote your belief in the matter. Therefore, we are just relating our own personal experiences with this. Yours is no more valid than mine. You insist you know how he should be patented. Do you have a degree in psychology with an emphasis on psychosexual development? Are you a medical doctor? I said my "instinct" was that what they are doing is right, but then indicated that we arm chair coaches really do not KNOW what is right and have no meaningful advice to give. You persist and I find that concerning.

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23 minutes ago, Faith-manor said:

https://www.nature.com, my kindle is not copying the whole link and so I do not know why, had an article based on a European study that has confirmed XXY births to be 1.47 per 1000 live births, and XYY to have increased to 2.91 per 1000. It is article 5201956.

In a population of 330,000,000 people puts the prevalence of XXY at 485,100 individuals and XYY at 960,300. Confirmed by DNA sequencing.

The consequences of this are not fully understood. But the total means approximately one million folks in our society have a chromosomal issue that can cause gender dysphoria, and this is not the only genetic issue that can cause it. This is not quite as rare as some would like to believe.

 

Also the Taylor Francis Journal of Sexual Health has an article in 2019 issue 4 about the effects of prematurity on psychosocial development. It does not specifically reference gender dysphoria, but does show some evidence that prematurity has a definite effect on psychosexual development, and again, is not fully understood at this time. This makes sense to me as medical advancements have made it possible for more and more premature births to survive and live to adulthood. It seems quite probable that gender and sexual health, like any other medical issue, may be affected by premature birth, and could be a contributor to what appears to be a rise in gender dysphoria.

This is fascinating. Thank you for sharing.

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49 minutes ago, Faith-manor said:

You use the word "most" here, but do not link any kind of study or evidence to promote your belief in the matter. Therefore, we are just relating our own personal experiences with this. Yours is no more valid than mine. You insist you know how he should be patented. Do you have a degree in psychology with an emphasis on psychosexual development? Are you a medical doctor? I said my "instinct" was that what they are doing is right, but then indicated that we arm chair coaches really do not KNOW what is right and have no meaningful advice to give. You persist and I find that concerning.

I don’t understand what is concerning. You have posted several times in this thread as well, and have less experience with this than Melissa or several of the other people posting. That doesn’t mean it’s not your prerogative to do so, and I don’t find it concerning that you are, but I don’t know why you would be disqualifying someone with more experience in the subject than you yourself have.
 

I think it’s important for people who are cavalier about suggesting gender changes with young children to realize that medicalizing a gender change down the road is not benign. While changing labels and names and presentation is, doing a full social transition early increases the chances for medicalization down the road, which again, is not benign. I can’t think of another condition where people would be so casual in suggesting a treatment for a child that dramatically increases the risk of sterility. In addition, there are many negative health side effects from cross sex hormones, so they’re not something to be taken lightly. These are heavy duty medical interventions. If a kid has the opportunity to develop into adulthood without those interventions, that should be the first choice. That’s the point of watchful waiting. If these things were reversible and didn’t have negative health effects, this would be a different conversation. 
 

eta: I missed a whole class of side effects from medicalization, and those are the sexual side effects. A lot of parents don’t really want to think about that when they’re dealing with their children, but those hormones and surgeries can have drastic impacts on the sexual function for trans people. Again, not saying that doesn’t mean those things aren’t still warranted for some people, but it’s another reason that people should be aware it’s not an outcome neutral decision to transition a child (incidentally, it’s common among people transitioning now to not do any “bottom surgery”,  because it’s just not fantastic at this point and many people are finding they’re more satisfied keeping what they were born with in that area).

Edited by KSera
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35 minutes ago, Faith-manor said:

You use the word "most" here, but do not link any kind of study or evidence to promote your belief in the matter. Therefore, we are just relating our own personal experiences with this. Yours is no more valid than mine. You insist you know how he should be patented. Do you have a degree in psychology with an emphasis on psychosexual development? Are you a medical doctor? I said my "instinct" was that what they are doing is right, but then indicated that we arm chair coaches really do not KNOW what is right and have no meaningful advice to give. You persist and I find that concerning.

There are multiple studies of varying sizes that show the desistance rates to be between 65 and 90 percent, with I think the majority saying around 80. Here is one: 

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyt.2021.632784/full

Here is a blog post by James Cantor, who has compiled the rates from different studies:

http://www.sexologytoday.org/2016/01/do-trans-kids-stay-trans-when-they-grow_99.html

And a fuller amount of info at genderhq.org:

https://www.genderhq.org/trans-children-gender-dysphoria-desistance-gay

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1 hour ago, Faith-manor said:

https://www.nature.com, my kindle is not copying the whole link and so I do not know why, had an article based on a European study that has confirmed XXY births to be 1.47 per 1000 live births, and XYY to have increased to 2.91 per 1000. It is article 5201956.

In a population of 330,000,000 people puts the prevalence of XXY at 485,100 individuals and XYY at 960,300. Confirmed by DNA sequencing.

The consequences of this are not fully understood. But the total means approximately one million folks in our society have a chromosomal issue that can cause gender dysphoria, and this is not the only genetic issue that can cause it. This is not quite as rare as some would like to believe.

 

Also the Taylor Francis Journal of Sexual Health has an article in 2019 issue 4 about the effects of prematurity on psychosocial development. It does not specifically reference gender dysphoria, but does show some evidence that prematurity has a definite effect on psychosexual development, and again, is not fully understood at this time. This makes sense to me as medical advancements have made it possible for more and more premature births to survive and live to adulthood. It seems quite probable that gender and sexual health, like any other medical issue, may be affected by premature birth, and could be a contributor to what appears to be a rise in gender dysphoria.

There’s no studies that I am aware of that link XXY and XYY with transgender identity.  Chromosomal testing is not part of the diagnostic process for gender dysphoria.
 

Some people have conflated transgender with intersex/sexual development differences (especially borrowing the “assigned at birth” lingo) but they don’t seem to have any overlap.  The vast majority of intersex people are male or female with differences in their sexual development.    Actually at this point, if there was a hormone or chromosomal test for transgender individuals, it would probably get attacked as medical gatekeeping.  
 

Perhaps some WTM posters are unaware of this change, but there are activists who are fervently denying that gender dysphoria or any medical dx process at all is even a required component of being trans.   Trans people like my brother who don’t support self ID and who support a therapeutic standard of care that requires more than informed consent for access to hormones and even surgery are stigmatized in their own community.  In addition to being called a TERF (which is funny given that they are trans and next to none of them are radical feminists), they are called transmedicalists and truscrum and harassed online and sometimes in person.  

Edited by LucyStoner
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1 minute ago, SanDiegoMom said:

There are multiple studies of varying sizes that show the desistance rates to be between 65 and 90 percent, with I think the majority saying around 80. Here is one: 

https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyt.2021.632784/full

Here is a blog post by James Cantor, who has compiled the rates from different studies:

http://www.sexologytoday.org/2016/01/do-trans-kids-stay-trans-when-they-grow_99.html

And a fuller amount of info at genderhq.org:

https://www.genderhq.org/trans-children-gender-dysphoria-desistance-gay

All of these studies will need to be updated and hopefully with bigger numbers, for the current cohort. The population transitioning now (besides being much larger) is way, way more heavily female and with mostly late onset rather than childhood onset. Unfortunately, it’s going to take quite a while to see how it all turns out.

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I read a book, that — I guess some of the conclusions are questioned and up for debate — but basically it includes a chapter saying that environmental chemicals could be an issue.

Its called:  Countdown:  How our modern world is threatening sperm counts, altering male and female reproductive health, and imperiling the future of the human race.  By Shanna Swan.  
 

It has a chapter 4 called:  Gender Fluidity:  Beyond Male and Female.  One sentence is “could it be that unseen chemicals in the environment are affecting the development of human sexuality and gender identity?”

I would say — that is the premise of this book.

I read a review of this book in The NY Times book review section.  It’s like overall about chemicals and it being harder to become pregnant, and make and female fertility issues.

Then a while later, there were letters, and some people wrote in disagreeing with how sperm counts were measured, and saying it’s debatable what is a low sperm count, and if sperm counts from earlier times could have been artificially higher because they are hard to count and two qualified people could look at the same sample and get a different number.  
 

I thought it was an interesting book overall.  
 

I have no idea if that is a rabbit trail!  I did think it was interesting, though, and the author makes a point it could be that the societal changes are happening at the same time, but maybe the changes in chemicals has something to do with it too and something to do with the increasing numbers. 
 

 

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On 6/19/2021 at 9:19 AM, Faith-manor said:

You use the word "most" here, but do not link any kind of study or evidence to promote your belief in the matter. Therefore, we are just relating our own personal experiences with this. Yours is no more valid than mine. You insist you know how he should be patented. Do you have a degree in psychology with an emphasis on psychosexual development? Are you a medical doctor? I said my "instinct" was that what they are doing is right, but then indicated that we arm chair coaches really do not KNOW what is right and have no meaningful advice to give. You persist and I find that concerning.

The desistance rate for gender dysphoria expressed in childhood is quite high, averaging around 80%- I see someone else linked a bunch of those studies.  

The people who created the Dutch protocol of puberty blockers followed by hormones and surgery actually specifically said that social transitioning prior to puberty shouldn’t happen because the desistance rate *is so high*.  Their drug and hormone protocol is consistently pointed to in the US care of transgender children but the bits about discouraging young social transition are ignored, as is the fact that recently some of the people involved in creating the protocol have cautioned that it was created with a cohort of trans kids that were unlike most of adolescents who are exploring transition now.

People who have experience taking care of kids with gender dysphoria or who identify as trans (because you don’t have to have GD to be trans these days), be it parents or aunts or big sisters, have often researched this issue in a depth that is exhausting.  Being told to shut up because we aren’t doctors or psychologists isn’t fair.  I’ve talked to a dizzying array of professionals and read an enormous amount on this subject in the last year or so in an effort to help rather than hurt the gaggle of children in my family who are identifying as trans right now.  It’s not a new topic for me as my brother was in my fulltime care when he transitioned 20 years ago. I also certainly come at the topic from a place of fervent support for trans people but have found that that is not really enough to spare me from the assumption that I must be a bigot for not taking it on faith that most of the kids in my family (and a huge proportion of their friend groups) were somehow misassigned at birth.  

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16 hours ago, Janeway said:

The remarks about having his penis cut off are concerning. The trans or even gay adults I have known never spoke that way as kids. I completely support the LGTBQ community, so this is not a rejection of being trans. 

My kid did speak that way.

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I’ve been thinking about this…. I think in OP’s position I’d say something like, “While you can’t have surgery to change your penis until you’re an adult, if you want to be a girl you can decide to be one today.” And have a conversation with DH & child about which girl name we would have chosen, and settle on an appropriate girl name ASAP.

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6 minutes ago, Katy said:

I’ve been thinking about this…. I think in OP’s position I’d say something like, “While you can’t have surgery to change your penis until you’re an adult, if you want to be a girl you can decide to be one today.” And have a conversation with DH & child about which girl name we would have chosen, and settle on an appropriate girl name ASAP.

Why wouldn't you do everything possible to encourage the child to be happy in the body he was born with?

 

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17 minutes ago, Katy said:

I’ve been thinking about this…. I think in OP’s position I’d say something like, “While you can’t have surgery to change your penis until you’re an adult, if you want to be a girl you can decide to be one today.” And have a conversation with DH & child about which girl name we would have chosen, and settle on an appropriate girl name ASAP.

I think maybe a lot of people not very closely acquainted with the subject don’t realize there’s no bottom surgery that gives people very close approximation to the opposite sex. Some procedures are closer than others, but people unfortunately don’t end up functioning just like the opposite sex. So, I don’t think it’s great to give the idea to kids that it’s as easy as that. And I wouldn’t personally be quick to make changes that increased the chances that my child was going to need such major intervention when they grow up, and lose functionality and quite possibly fertility, when the chances are higher that they won’t need that if we do not do a full social transition as a child. That just seems the greatest kindness to the child and considering them as a future adult, and not just as a child. 

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12 minutes ago, Katy said:

I’ve been thinking about this…. I think in OP’s position I’d say something like, “While you can’t have surgery to change your penis until you’re an adult, if you want to be a girl you can decide to be one today.” And have a conversation with DH & child about which girl name we would have chosen, and settle on an appropriate girl name ASAP.

I'm sorry to reply to the same post twice, but I can't get past the idea that you would tell a 6 year-old child that it was perfectly fine for him to "decide to be a girl today."  It seems so incredibly cavalier.

It's not like this child's p*nis will magically disappear and he will magically morph into having a female body. In order to "be a girl," years of hormone treatments and multiple extensive and painful surgeries will probably be involved. This is no small thing and to immediately rush to change the child's entire identity 24/7 from male to female strikes me as both irresponsible and potentially incredibly harmful to the child, particularly since statistically, the likelihood that he is actually trans is very small.

 

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2 minutes ago, KSera said:

I think maybe a lot of people not very closely acquainted with the subject don’t realize there’s no bottom surgery that gives people very close approximation to the opposite sex. Some procedures are closer than others, but people unfortunately don’t end up functioning just like the opposite sex. So, I don’t think it’s great to give the idea to kids that it’s as easy as that. And I wouldn’t personally be quick to make changes that increased the chances that my child was going to need such major intervention when they grow up, and lose functionality and quite possibly fertility, when the chances are higher that they won’t need that if we do not do a full social transition as a child. That just seems the greatest kindness to the child and considering them as a future adult, and not just as a child. 

We were posting at the same time, and I just wanted to say that I agree with you completely.

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Just now, Catwoman said:

Why wouldn't you do everything possible to encourage the child to be happy in the body he was born with?

 


In short, I think lying is a sin and being transgender is not. I also break other Old Testament laws like eating shellfish, mixing fabrics, and I put meat and cheese in the same nachos last night!  I know, it’s a controversial moral stance. Ok, obvious sarcasm over. 

If this was new I wouldn’t encourage a change, but this has been going on for as long as the child was verbal. It’s not a phase. It may very well be the way they were born.  I don’t see it as any different than a child who was born gay.  And while I know that not every gay person identified as such from a very young age, I definitely grew up with a couple very feminine boys who I knew were gay before they announced it to anyone. You could definitely tell from preschool.  

I don’t think that sort of inborn sense is something that changes or something that is chosen. And I think it does a lot more harm to lie about it or shame a child about it than it does to be honest. And frankly in the area the OP lives this is acceptable.  They’re not in the Bible belt. If he becomes she and in a few years switches back no one will care. Shame and lying will create a lot more harm than open honest support. 

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11 minutes ago, Katy said:


In short, I think lying is a sin and being transgender is not. I also break other Old Testament laws like eating shellfish, mixing fabrics, and I put meat and cheese in the same nachos last night!  I know, it’s a controversial moral stance. Ok, obvious sarcasm over. 

If this was new I wouldn’t encourage a change, but this has been going on for as long as the child was verbal. It’s not a phase. It may very well be the way they were born.  I don’t see it as any different than a child who was born gay.  And while I know that not every gay person identified as such from a very young age, I definitely grew up with a couple very feminine boys who I knew were gay before they announced it to anyone. You could definitely tell from preschool.  

I don’t think that sort of inborn sense is something that changes or something that is chosen. And I think it does a lot more harm to lie about it or shame a child about it than it does to be honest. And frankly in the area the OP lives this is acceptable.  They’re not in the Bible belt. If he becomes she and in a few years switches back no one will care. Shame and lying will create a lot more harm than open honest support. 

Who said anything about shaming? And how is it a lie to tell a boy that he has a male body? The lie is in telling a little boy that he can say he's a girl and he will magically become one, right there, that day. Give him a new name and a dress and he's a girl. That is a lie.

If a little boy's parents have been treating him as a daughter for "a few years," think of the psychological difficulty that child will have if he realizes that he has really been male all along. It won't be an easy thing for "her" to switch back to being "him," and he may actually feel tremendous guilt about taking his parents' "daughter" away from them. And there will almost certainly be tremendous awkwardness for that child to announce to friends that he's not a girl any more, not even mentioning the social stigma involved.

This is not a simple thing. You seem to be treating it as, if the parents raise him as a girl and he realizes he's really a boy, there is no harm, no foul, and he can just go right back to being a boy without any psychological trauma. I don't think that is the case at all. 

And if it turns out eventually that the child is truly trans, hopefully they will be old enough at that point to understand what it truly means to transition from male to female. Because it's not as simple as a 6 year-old might believe it is, and it's not fair to mislead that child into thinking it's as simple as wishing it so.

I'm sorry if I'm coming across as argumentative, but I just don't understand why you would go straight to treating a little boy as a daughter and having the rest of the world do the same, without significant efforts having first been made to see if the child will be able to accept himself the way he was born. 

 

 

 

Edited by Catwoman
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2 minutes ago, Catwoman said:

Who said anything about shaming? And how is it a lie to tell a boy that he has a male body? The lie is in telling a little boy that he can say he's a girl and he will magically become one, right there, that day. Give him a new name and a dress and he's a girl. That is a lie.

If a little boy's parents have been treating him as a daughter for "a few years," think of the psychological difficulty that child will have if he realizes that he has really been male all along. It won't be an easy thing for "her" to switch back to being "him," and he may actually feel tremendous guilt about taking his parents "daughter" away from them. And there will almost certainly be tremendous awkwardness for that child to announce to friends that he's not a girl any more, not even mentioning the social stigma involved.

This is not a simple thing, and you seem to be treating it as, if the parents raise him as a girl and he realizes he's really a boy, there is no harm, no foul, and he can just go right back to being a boy without any psychological trauma. I don't think that is the case at all. 

And if it turns out eventually that the child is truly trans, hopefully they will be old enough at that point to understand what it truly means to transition from male to female. Because it's not as simple as a 6 year-old might believe it is, and it's not fair to mislead that child into thinking it's as simple as wishing it so.

 

Telling a child their feelings are wrong is inherently shameful. That shame is a bigger trauma to me than all of the hypothetical situations you’re imagining here.  Why would it be a bigger problem to take away a daughter than a son?  And why would the child feel they are taking away anyone at any point?  All they are doing is becoming a more honest and authentic representation of themselves. 

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Just now, Katy said:

Telling a child their feelings are wrong is inherently shameful. That shame is a bigger trauma to me than all of the hypothetical situations you’re imagining here.  Why would it be a bigger problem to take away a daughter than a son?  And why would the child feel they are taking away anyone at any point?  All they are doing is becoming a more honest and authentic representation of themselves. 

The kid is only 6.

And there is no shame to telling a kid it's fun to pretend to be a girl, but that he has a boy's body and here are all of the incredibly awesomely amazing reasons why it's great to be a boy.

You act as though it will be a casual and easy thing for this child to live and grow up as the opposite gender of the way he was born. That is simply not true. And you seem to assume that, rather than trying to help this child through what may be nothing more than an awkward phase, his parents should immediately change the name and the identity of a 6 year-old to the opposite sex, just because he says that's what he wants. That seems so extreme to me. Shouldn't there be some sort of middle ground before a little boy "becomes" a little girl? Living as a trans person is HARD. If there is any way to help this child work through his feelings and become comfortable as a male, shouldn't some effort be made to make that happen? Wouldn't it be better at this young age for the child to "pretend" to be a girl as a play activity, but also be encouraged to accept and embrace his male body as well? Why go all the way to having the child live 100% of the time as a girl? What's the rush?

I think we will have to agree to disagree about this, because we seem to be at polar opposite ends of this. I feel like I'm being rude to you, and I don't mean to be. I just don't seem to be phrasing things very well, and I'm sorry if I'm coming across in a snotty way.

 

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One question I have been meaning to ask -- Has this child had psychological counseling to try to determine why he wants to be a girl? Could he have experienced some kind of trauma or abuse that he thinks wouldn't happen to him if he wasn't a boy? Such a young child having fantasies of doing something so horrifically violent as cutting off his own p*nis seems worthy of some serious counseling.

I feel like there are so many avenues to be explored before starting to treat the child as a female.

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48 minutes ago, Katy said:


In short, I think lying is a sin and being transgender is not. I also break other Old Testament laws like eating shellfish, mixing fabrics, and I put meat and cheese in the same nachos last night!  I know, it’s a controversial moral stance. Ok, obvious sarcasm over. 

If this was new I wouldn’t encourage a change, but this has been going on for as long as the child was verbal. It’s not a phase. It may very well be the way they were born.  I don’t see it as any different than a child who was born gay.  And while I know that not every gay person identified as such from a very young age, I definitely grew up with a couple very feminine boys who I knew were gay before they announced it to anyone. You could definitely tell from preschool.  

I don’t think that sort of inborn sense is something that changes or something that is chosen. And I think it does a lot more harm to lie about it or shame a child about it than it does to be honest. And frankly in the area the OP lives this is acceptable.  They’re not in the Bible belt. If he becomes she and in a few years switches back no one will care. Shame and lying will create a lot more harm than open honest support. 

I’m totally confused where the sin and Old Testament references are coming from. Other than a couple people on the other thread, is anyone on this thread advising watchful waiting seem to be coming at it from a moral, sin perspective? I’m not seeing that at all. This isn’t a sin issue at all, it’s an issue of wanting to preserve the fullest life for a kid. This is not at all like affirming a child who was born gay. No medical procedures with significant side effects are required at all for someone to be gay. (I have a gay kid and didn’t so much as blink the first time they told me they had a new relationship with someone the same sex.) 

I honestly believe people mean well, but I think there’s such a rush for people to show that they are good, open minded liberals, that they’re not taking into account the significant potential for negative health effects on the actual kids involved. They may choose or need those treatments in the future, but It’s not like it’s as simple as getting a tattoo or something. I just really don’t think people are considering the children enough in the rush to take the “correct” position. People who actually work with these kids, on the other hand, are increasingly concerned about this rush to treatment.

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5 minutes ago, Catwoman said:

One question I have been meaning to ask -- Has this child had psychological counseling to try to determine why he wants to be a girl? Could he have experienced some kind of trauma or abuse that he thinks wouldn't happen to him if he wasn't a boy? Such a young child having fantasies of doing something so horrifically violent as cutting off his own p*nis seems worthy of some serious counseling.

I feel like there are so many avenues to be explored before starting to treat the child as a female.

I did wonder this, and also wondered if there could be an issue causing pain or discomfort. Those would be good avenues to explore to make sure that’s not causing him a problem.

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4 hours ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I may be confusing kids, but I thought this child had mosaic T21.  My understanding is that, if so, the karotype testing that would have confirmed that diagnosis, should have shown the number of chromosomes and the types of sex chromosomes.  So, it seems like something that impacts that numbers (e.g. XXY, or genetically female but male in external appearance) would already be known.  

It is that child. We know he is XY.  There was more mosaicism than T21 and chimericism(spelling? I don’t know if I’m right or not) was raised as a possibility, but we have not pursued further testing as we felt we had the answer for his delays. 

I take androgen blockers and supplemental estrogen(and birth control to stop periods because I absolutely hate them). As I’ve said I’ve never felt either like a woman or a man.  I just feel human.  So I am trying to navigate the best path with a child for whom gender is a big deal.   I don’t think he is or isn’t trans; 6 is way too young.  I just want to support him the best I can, especially when there are people in my life asking him if he wants to be called a girl.  I don’t want to argue, I’m just a mom trying to figure it out.

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44 minutes ago, KSera said:

I did wonder this, and also wondered if there could be an issue causing pain or discomfort. Those would be good avenues to explore to make sure that’s not causing him a problem.

No trauma or abuse.   I don’t think he wants to violently cut it off; he has a speech delay and I think he’s just indicating that he wants to get rid of it in terms that he knows.  
If you ask him, he doesn’t say he wants to be a girl. He says he is a girl. He’s just waiting for the rest of us to figure it out too.   As I’ve said—I personally am probably non-binary if I really think about it.  So having a child so focused on gender is a new world for me, and I’m just not sure how to best navigate it.  He is intact and we did have the pediatrician check for phimosis or other issues that could be causing pain.  
 

I honestly think he just actually believes he’s a girl.  Which is fine.  I am sure I am projecting some of my own gender stuff, which is what I absolutely don’t want to do.  I also don’t want labels or pronoun confusion or medical procedures before adulthood.  He’s a delightfully happy, joyful, resilient child who just believes his body is a boy but he is really a girl who should have every frilly pink dress that ever existed. 

Edited by Mrs Tiggywinkle
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37 minutes ago, KSera said:

I’m totally confused where the sin and Old Testament references are coming from. Other than a couple people on the other thread, is anyone on this thread advising watchful waiting seem to be coming at it from a moral, sin perspective? I’m not seeing that at all. This isn’t a sin issue at all, it’s an issue of wanting to preserve the fullest life for a kid. This is not at all like affirming a child who was born gay. No medical procedures with significant side effects are required at all for someone to be gay. (I have a gay kid and didn’t so much as blink the first time they told me they had a new relationship with someone the same sex.) 

I honestly believe people mean well, but I think there’s such a rush for people to show that they are good, open minded liberals, that they’re not taking into account the significant potential for negative health effects on the actual kids involved. They may choose or need those treatments in the future, but It’s not like it’s as simple as getting a tattoo or something. I just really don’t think people are considering the children enough in the rush to take the “correct” position. People who actually work with these kids, on the other hand, are increasingly concerned about this rush to treatment.

Most people I know who argue against supporting children who have had gender identity issues for as long as they could communicate do so only for religious reasons. If a child has consistently wanted to be a different gender for more than 3 years it isn’t a passing phase. We’re not discussing hormone blockers or anything that might be as permanent as a tattoo.  We’re discussing changing pronouns and nicknames. 

I’m against suddenly doing so for a 12 year old whose best friend just came out as trans.  But for a 6 year old who has always expressed that God made a mistake and prays to become a girl?  That isn’t flippant.  

I love my children. I love them unconditionally. Of course I’d look at why and therapy and make sure there aren’t painful medical issues.  But when all of that shakes out and the child still feels God made a mistake?  Change from Joel to Julie and he to she.  I love you no matter if you’re a boy or a girl or whatever the politically correct term is for androgynous these days.  It does not matter what’s in your pants, I love YOU.  And contrary to popular belief, trans kids transition and de-transition all the time. That’s why a decent surgeon waits years before doing anything. 

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35 minutes ago, Mrs Tiggywinkle said:

It is that child. We know he is XY.  There was more mosaicism than T21 and chimericism(spelling? I don’t know if I’m right or not) was raised as a possibility, but we have not pursued further testing as we felt we had the answer for his delays. 

I take androgen blockers and supplemental estrogen(and birth control to stop periods because I absolutely hate them). As I’ve said I’ve never felt either like a woman or a man.  I just feel human.  So I am trying to navigate the best path with a child for whom gender is a big deal.   I don’t think he is or isn’t trans; 6 is way too young.  I just want to support him the best I can, especially when there are people in my life asking him if he wants to be called a girl.  I don’t want to argue, I’m just a mom trying to figure it out.

I didn't mean to argue with you.  I just was responding to the idea that he might be XXY or XYY. 

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21 hours ago, KSera said:

Why on earth would she have done that? I would actually be pretty ticked off as a parent to confuse a kid like that.  There’s no reason he needs to be sent the message that he likes to wear dresses means he is not a boy.  

Because he has, for a long time, fervently prayed to God that he might become a girl? He doesn't just wear dresses, he has persistently and vocally expressed a wish to be a girl. It would have been smarter for her to ask the parents, but it's not some crazy, out-of-nowhere question based on him wearing a tutu one day. The OP has clearly stated that this goes well beyond a little boy who likes to wear dresses (most of the little boys I have known went through a dress phase, usually limited to dress-up play by the adults; I don't think dresses vs pants mean a thing). 

21 hours ago, Catwoman said:

 Why are other people asking if they should refer to him as a girl? I’m confused about that.

Because he prays to God to be a girl, because he at least sometimes states that he is a girl, because he persistently says he wants to be a girl? I mean, I think they should ask the parents, but this question is not coming out of nowhere. It's not being asked solely because he went to the store in a princess dress, kwim?  If a child tells me they are a girl, when I think or know they are a natal male, I am probably going to ask if I should refer to them as a girl. The parents can answer with a simple no, 'he' and 'boy' are fine for now or yes, J does prefer 'she' and 'girl' 

42 minutes ago, Catwoman said:

Such a young child having fantasies of doing something so horrifically violent as cutting off his own p*nis seems worthy of some serious counseling.

It's common for children experiencing gender dysphoria to want the offending 'part' to go away. It happens earlier with boys, for obvious reasons. It's very unlikely that he's viewing it as horrifically violent; he's just thinking, I don't want this, let's cut it off. 

21 minutes ago, Mrs Tiggywinkle said:

 I just want to support him the best I can, especially when there are people in my life asking him if he wants to be called a girl.  I don’t want to argue, I’m just a mom trying to figure it out.

It seems like your immediate focus might be on coming up with a ready answer to that question! For a young child who has not expressed a preference, and who doesn't quite seem to get the question to begin with, I would have no problem answering for them. It's still 'he' and 'him' for now, thanks. It's 'boy' for now, thanks. We'll let you know if it changes. 

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10 minutes ago, Katy said:

And contrary to popular belief, trans kids transition and de-transition all the time. That’s why a decent surgeon waits years before doing anything. 

To the first, yes, that is true. To the second, there seem to be an awful lot of non-decent plastic surgeons in the US right now then. For young kids, I agree it would likely be unusual to find a surgeon who would operate. For older teens, it can be pretty easy and doesn’t take years. My dc had no trouble having several to choose from, six months after transitioning socially. 

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1 hour ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I didn't mean to argue with you.  I just was responding to the idea that he might be XXY or XYY. 

I didn’t think you were arguing. 🙂 I just wanted to clarify that there is genetic weirdness but I am pretty sure he was XY, though now that I think about it I never specifically asked or saw the paper—I just assumed.  I was too busy processing everything else.

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6 hours ago, Faith-manor said:

You use the word "most" here, but do not link any kind of study or evidence to promote your belief in the matter. Therefore, we are just relating our own personal experiences with this. Yours is no more valid than mine. You insist you know how he should be patented. Do you have a degree in psychology with an emphasis on psychosexual development? Are you a medical doctor? I said my "instinct" was that what they are doing is right, but then indicated that we arm chair coaches really do not KNOW what is right and have no meaningful advice to give. You persist and I find that concerning.

I can't even. 

So I'm not going to bother. 

The same research and clinicians I use to inform myself are out there for anyone else to inform themselves.

After six years/two kids deep in gender dysphoria, I'm too damn tired to provide citations. Do your own work. 

Nothing I say has not been said by the psychiatrists with expertise in paediatric gender dysphoria at my kids gender clinic!!!

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1 hour ago, Mrs Tiggywinkle said:

No trauma or abuse.   I don’t think he wants to violently cut it off; he has a speech delay and I think he’s just indicating that he wants to get rid of it in terms that he knows.  
If you ask him, he doesn’t say he wants to be a girl. He says he is a girl. He’s just waiting for the rest of us to figure it out too.   As I’ve said—I personally am probably non-binary if I really think about it.  So having a child so focused on gender is a new world for me, and I’m just not sure how to best navigate it.  He is intact and we did have the pediatrician check for phimosis or other issues that could be causing pain.  
 

I honestly think he just actually believes he’s a girl.  Which is fine.  I am sure I am projecting some of my own gender stuff, which is what I absolutely don’t want to do.  I also don’t want labels or pronoun confusion or medical procedures before adulthood.  He’s a delightfully happy, joyful, resilient child who just believes his body is a boy but he is really a girl who should have every frilly pink dress that ever existed.

He's likely to grow up to be a delightful, feminine, possibly gay, boy. This is the profile of many feminine men as children. He might grow up to be transexual, and desire to transition as an adult. Either option will be ok.

All you have to do at the moment is continue to allow as much GNC expression as his heart desires. Watch for distress levels and/or dysfunction. If either appear to be increasing, look for psychological support for him. 

Your anxiety has been prompted by the school and their request for pronouns. The school wants to put your boy in a box. You don't have to. 

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3 hours ago, KSera said:

I think maybe a lot of people not very closely acquainted with the subject don’t realize there’s no bottom surgery that gives people very close approximation to the opposite sex. Some procedures are closer than others, but people unfortunately don’t end up functioning just like the opposite sex. So, I don’t think it’s great to give the idea to kids that it’s as easy as that. And I wouldn’t personally be quick to make changes that increased the chances that my child was going to need such major intervention when they grow up, and lose functionality and quite possibly fertility, when the chances are higher that they won’t need that if we do not do a full social transition as a child. That just seems the greatest kindness to the child and considering them as a future adult, and not just as a child. 

There is also the unfortunate fact that SRS works best ( has best aesthetic and functional outcomes) on adult organs ie been through puberty.

Putting a six year old male on a path towards blockers causes major issues with bottom surgery if wanted later on 

Some people here have the luxury of being 'right' but not thinking through the implications. 

Personally I wouldn't wish having to have these type of discussions with your teen son on anyone, but you certainly learn a lot, down in the weeds, when you are desperately trying to help your dysphoric kid find the best of a variety of difficult outcomes. 

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