My Beautiful Little Boy

born a son, raised as himself

Family…Everyone’s Got One

on April 13, 2012
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H in his Easter outfit

So the other day I mentioned that I was upset. That’s because Easter Sunday wasn’t exactly the pleasant holiday memory I was hoping for. The morning was great…but that was our time at home. In the evening we got together with my family. Needless to say, my parents aren’t exactly thrilled with my parenting choices–especially when it comes to H and gender issues.

My father is from the school of thought that boys need to be toughened up. Yeah, because that worked so well with my brother, who barely speaks to him due to all his tough love. He thinks I’m ruining my son. That’s his word, ruin. I guess in a way I’m thankful that he blames me and rarely shares his dissatisfaction in front of H. Well, that all basically went out the door the second we walked in.

After seeing H, my father took my husband aside and started mumbling under his breath. H noticed too. Usually he greets both of my parents with a hug, but this time he was reluctant. He’s six, he’s not oblivious. I wisely sent him into the living room to play with his cousins. (They are both younger and both girls and they are thrilled to play with H whenever they see each other.)

I flatly told my father that I didn’t want to hear any of it. I could tell he was fighting the urge to argue. He didn’t though. Probably because he knew I’d walk right back out. The evening went better from there. That is until later when my mother decided to confront me in the kitchen to tell me that her and my dad were only worried that H was going to be made fun of by other kids. I felt like telling her that so far, they are the only ones I’ve ever seen make him feel uncomfortable.

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How could anyone not love this boy?

I never assumed this was going to be an easy process, but is it too much to ask the ones you love to be supportive? Family or not, I’m not going to let them bully me into causing my son unhappiness. I know I’m making the choices that are right for him right now. They’re just going to have to deal with it.

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6 responses to “Family…Everyone’s Got One

  1. Nancy says:

    I am sorry that you and H had to endure that kind of treatment from your parents. I have to say that i think you handled the situation perfectly, especially in helping to shelter H from the negative vibes from your father. Oh yes, “toughen ’em up”—perfect formula to make a feminine boy very unhappy, and also a good way to make a more macho boy into a mean, selfish, aggressive jerk.
    Kudos to you!

  2. Boys In Dance says:

    A courageous personal post.

    Trying not to be critical but just a few observations. Everyone has gender stereotype biases. Your father may believe all boys should be tough. I have the impression you believe the stereotypic image all tough boys have no feelings or are unable to express themselves. Maybe explore the idea that boys and girls should experience the best and most positive aspects of both genders in their personal growth?

    However, if H is going to live as a half boy and half girl then I agree with your father in that there is a strong probability your son will be bullied and beaten by those who do not understand him in the future. It is just reality. (Less so if he lives as a full-time girl or a boy.) Perhaps not now when he is so cute but what will happen as he reaches puberty? What will be done to teach H to defend and protect himself from physical assaults and cope with emotional teasing and bulling? H can still be feminine but he will need to “toughen up”. (I’ve read that transsexuals are the toughest people in the world, they have to be, to deal with those who do not understand them.)

    You will need to toughen up also. If you deal with criticism from your own family by withdrawing from them, people who I presume love you and H, how are going to deal with those in society who vehemently disagree with your choices and will conspire to make your lives miserable?

    I believe you are doing what you think will make H happy. I’m just saying you need strategies for dealing with confrontation and non-acceptance.

  3. Jason says:

    I am a child of the late 70s and early 80s. My clothes were usually boys or neutral that I remember, but my hair as well as my 3 brothers were all at least the same length as H’s, maybe even longer. My mother ran a daycare out of her house and I had access to almost every toy, Tonka to Barbies. All of us are married now and somewhat normal lol. So please continue to support and allow H the freedom you have. My wife and I are attempting to start a family and our discussions about our childrens future remind us of the occurances you have posted. Please realise others understand and support your efforts.

  4. Jason says:

    By the way my wife says H is adorable in his Easter/Wedding outfit.

  5. Rich, RN says:

    Sounds like you could use support.
    Have you contacted: http://imatyfa.org/
    It’s a good resource.

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