My Journey as a "Trans-Parent" Mom
My son is the most brilliant star in my solar system. We’ve always been on the same wavelength and I once took pride in my parenting style. His dad & I co-parent surprisingly well and we encourage open communication and critical thinking. When Hunter started to question his sexuality and came out as gay, at twelve, I was confident in my ability to “be the mom my kid needs me to be.” I have seen every episode of “Queer as Folk,” so I knew I was prepared! We embraced the Pride, bought the merch, and Hunter became the newest member of what he calls “the Alphabet Mafia.” Oh, how Karma loves hubris.
Over the next several months, Gay became Bi, and Bi gave way to Pan. Our conversations became heavily left leaning and “trans-probing,” in order for my son to gauge my reaction to all things trans. Trans YouTubers were referred to as “wholesome,” and suddenly JK Rowling became a Dementor. That is where I drew the line and sent my son on a knowledge quest. We looked Rowling’s original tweets, which mirrored my own views on women and falsely branded Rowling as “transphobic.” We read Maya Forester’s equally vilified tweet, and viewed a photo of the man Maya referred to as “sir.” The internet provided a rebuttal breakdown of the facts, spinning them into some strange entitlement that punishes people for not conforming to the trans ideology groupthink. I sensed a “disturbance in the Force,” but I had no way of knowing what was to come.
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When Hunter came out as “Diana,” I was up for the challenge, or so I thought. The celebration that accompanies “coming out” as trans is community wide. My “daughter” was embraced by teachers & peers alike; something that never happened to Hunter. The public school quickly erased my son and welcomed my “daughter,” without a word to me. The pronoun pins regularly coming home from school were the school’s only form of communication. “She” quickly found a crush, who was a cute middle school girl, who identified as a “boy.” It made absolutely no sense; both kids presented as their biological sex, but demanded recognition as the opposite sex. At first, I laughed it off and tried to play along, as if it were the goth phase of my youth. Where’s the harm in letting it run its course?
Suddenly, straight people became the enemy, including loving parents. My “daughter” quickly found me an identity flag, which is supposed to protect me from being seen as the enemy. According to my 13-year-old, a self-proclaimed “woman,” I was a “Demi-sexual”, simply because I don’t believe in casual sex. As if not screwing every man around somehow minimizes my sexuality? (how dare I slut-shame by inference.) Our daily drive to school became a lesson in trans indoctrination. I learned that I am a “Transphobic TERF,” simply for limiting my sexual partners to biological men. I rolled my eyes and figured it was a silly middle school coming-of-age thing. I bet you’re chuckling to yourself, aren’t you? I get it; I’m shaking my head as I type.
I joined all of the trans-parenting groups and allowed Hunter to lead the way “gayly forward.” His generally conservative dad was even surprisingly supportive. Puberty hit particularly hard, as is common in autistic individuals. We had to adjust Hunter’s anxiety & ADHD meds in order to keep him stable. Then Covid-19 hit. Hunter & I celebrated the ‘end of days’ of forced socialization. He retreated into his room, and I into my office, each of which held the portal to all human interaction, Discord & Zoom. What we ended up with was increased isolation, even from each other, and communication began to break down.
The truth welcomes scrutiny, because facts can easily withstand any challenge. When my father mentioned that one of his golf buddies was taking Lupron for prostate cancer, I began to question the claims of “harmless & 100% reversible”. Lupron is FDA approved for use in the treatment of prostate cancer, endometriosis, and central precocious puberty (which results in faster than normal bone growth in young children). There are moderate risks when combining Lupron with antidepressants. The side effects are off-putting; flu-like symptoms, hot flashes, migraines, sleeping problems and weight gain. The “serious” side effects are startling; mood swings and depression (including increase in suicidal ideation), symptoms of liver problems, severe bone and tendon pain, lung inflammation, etc.
I took my questions to my trans-parenting groups, looking for reassurance. I knew these women had experience; many had supported their children through years of medicalized transition. They experienced puberty blockers, cross sex hormones, and even pediatric “top surgery” (double mastectomies). They would know the risks versus the benefits, and which risk symptoms may present for my “daughter”. They would soothe my fears in the same way they reassure other parents that binders are harmless, or advise which packers are best for middle schoolers. These “allies'' of trans children will know the physical ramifications of the treatments they extoll. Except, they didn’t.
I was treated like a pariah when I asked the simple question, “Where do you find the medical information regarding treatment?” I was bombarded with links to transgender Tik Toks and “woke” social media accounts. That wasn’t the quality of information I needed to make an informed medical decision that would drastically alter my child on every level. The other “Trans-parents” questioned my love for my child. Condemning me for daring to ask about anything that was not 100% blind affirmation. When I shared a source that stated Lupron was used to chemically castrate pedophiles, and expressed my concern, I was labeled the dreaded “Transphobe” & “TERF.” So, I stopped asking and started reading.
The all affirming social media posts I witnessed were full of horror stories. Moms posted selfies of their 15-year-old “sons” after “top surgery.” Top Surgery is what the trans community calls a double mastectomy of healthy breasts. Some are even opting to lose their nipples; which is lucky for the surgeons, as nipple replacement is the most technically advanced and delicate part of breast reconstruction. Random moms were offering to help children circumvent their parents, in order to get binders and even medication. “Glitter families,” were opening their homes to children whose parents won’t “affirm” their child’s gender ideology. Suddenly, words equal violence, and when I insisted that real girls do not have penises, I was the delusional one.
My son’s school called me on a Monday morning, requesting that I pick him up and get him mental health care before he could return. Suddenly, he was Hunter again. My people-pleasing son had filled out a suicide prevention worksheet with answers that implied a heightened risk of self-harm. I called my son’s dad and we both headed to school. The next two weeks were a whirlwind of psych EDs, involuntary holds, and inpatient treatment. I breathed a sigh of relief because I knew that this was the time and place to address the whole trans fad and virtue bullying behaviors.
One of the first calls I received from the hospital that held Hunter involuntarily, was to apologize for putting “Diana” on the boys’ ward. Words failed me and I laughed until I cried; I had been sucker punched by the very professionals I had trusted to help my son. Since I knew I had a son, I tried to have a reality-based conversation about my son. However, the hospital refused to host a family discussion about the biological reality of sex, and implored me to find “my daughter” a therapist before I burdened her with my “beliefs.” My life had become a nightmare and I was desperate to wake up, as the reality sunk in. I was in this alone, nobody would be riding to my rescue.
I struggled with intense cognitive dissonance. I kept picturing my future son, asking me why I allowed a 13-year-old child to experiment with medical treatments that would determine the course of his sexual experience, for life. Surely, I knew better than to actually believe that boys can become real girls. This had to be one of those weird social inside jokes that morphs the meaning of a word, like “bad” into meaning good, right? That’s where I was, mentally, when I stumbled upon my “underground group” of heroes. People like Benjamin A Boyce, Lisa Littman, Buck Angel, Blaire White, A Wider Lens Podcast, and a concerned parents FB group that welcomes questions rather than immediately shutting them down. They helped me remember that the reality of sex is a biological binary, and that no matter what the masses insist, the Emperor has no clothes. I realized I could no longer indulge my son’s delusions and had to be honest; trans girls are really boys in drag.
People in my life denied that this was really happening. Outwardly, there was no change in how my son presented himself. They claimed I was overreacting, and that there was no way that the school, hospital, or any other adult, was calling Hunter “Diana.” Yet, that’s exactly what was happening. When I confided to the school counselor that “we believe in science at home,” he suggested that it “might be time to loop in social services.” I was stunned. My therapist confirmed that CPS could and would get involved; they honestly believe they would be helping my son by removing him from a “non-affirming” home. I was terrified! Could custody of my child be at risk simply because I won’t say that some girls have penises? How the hell did we get to this point?
My sweet and sensitive autistic son has insecurities around “toxic masculinity,” especially as social activists have made being a straight white male seem like a mortal sin. This ideology seems to be in direct competition with other religions, denying the most fundamental beliefs, and scoffing at scientific reality. Targeting those with mental health issues, those in emotional turmoil, and promising them a solution; if only they forfeit their health for a lifetime of medicalization. Trans ideology; where kids trade their physical bodies for coveted marginalization labels in order to temporarily elevate their social status.
I love my son and I know, with a mother’s wisdom, that if allowed to develop and mature naturally, Hunter will come to love and respect himself for who he is, not who he wishes he were. The sad irony is that I know very few, if any adults who fully understood themselves, or society, at 13 years old. This is not a symptom of being “in the wrong body”, it’s a symptom of being an adolescent human being. The problems come when a child with empathy related delays, decides that their feelings are the only things that matter, and the “professionals” affirm and defend these false beliefs.
For example, this wonderfully creative child, whom I birthed from my own body after 33 hours of labor, actually tried to explain to me that “she” was more of a woman than I. What led my son to say such a thing to his mother? According to him, it’s due to the fact that I’m not ultra-feminine, I served in the military during a war, I was a paramedic, and I worked in medical software technology. Evidentially, the strides I made for women in the military and in male dominated career fields means I am less of a woman than my teenage son.
It’s currently summer break and I have decided to homeschool my son next year. I cannot live in fear of being labeled “transphobic” and having Hunter put into foster care, due to my belief in biology. Outsiders, looking in, doubt the reality that has taken hold in our schools and medical communities. They can’t imagine a school would call a boy “a girl,” just to avoid hurting the child’s feelings. But that is exactly what is happening, and not just in my area, it’s everywhere. I simply refuse to watch my only child drown in a sea of doublespeak, fear, and confusion, while the professionals who are supposed to help my child stand back and applaud his delusions. This is the hill I will die on.
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