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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 09:59 AM Thread Starter
Wayward Wombat
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Parenting is hard.

So so so hard.

So, dd is 13. She came out as transgender last night.

I feel like a shit because I really want to support her in this. No, I do support her in this.

But, on the other hand, I kind of don't buy it. I don't think that she doesn't feel this way, but I honestly don't think that it's something that is going to stick, and I feel that coming out in school, in our teeny tiny town of less than 4000 people, is going to be something that she's going to regret down the road. I'm reading up, and these parents have known that something was different forever. She is not super girly, but she is way more girly than masculine. She likes things that girls like. This has completely come out of left field for us. She was an extremely girly little girl, despite the fact that I've never been girly and didn't push it on her at all. She identifies as pansexual and likes boys. She is also a major hypochondriac.

I feel like I'm yeah butting, and maybe I am yeah butting some. And we totally dropped the ball, because there were signs of depression that we talked about as a family, but we put off as home sickness or hormones or whatever that seemed to pass, that we didn't get help for. And that is totally on me. And lord knows there is family history there.

I feel like I'm damned if I do and damned if I don't, and am really really lost.

She has been talking to a counselor at school. We are making an appointment to see her next week, with dd's blessing. I am also going to contact the mental health clinic to have more personal counselling for her and family counselling as well. But I have to do that in such a way that it isn't trying to fix her. Because it isn't. But, holy shit, a 45% suicide attempt rate is fucking terrifying.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 11:13 AM
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Click here to enlarge. I have no input to be honest. I am grateful that you did post about this though. Seriously, if people like you and I start to talk about it and share our experiences maybe it will help others.

I miss my kids so much and my 15 year old won't see me when I go up North next week. I did this I myself and this is a hard pill to swallow.

I wish I had the answers too.


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 11:28 AM
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I get you. I think some kids have depression or anxiety or some other issue and in their search for an explanation they sometimes conclude that maybe it's their sexuality. And that may be part of it, of course. But it also can just be sheer confusion. Regardless, all you can do is love her no matter her gender identity and orientation and get treatment for any other issues. Over time she will figure it out. That isn't work you can do for her. But she will know you always supported her.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 11:52 AM
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Liza, just accept and support. It doesn't matter how girly she was or is, and you're making yourself nuts mulling all that shit over.

It's great that she's in counseling so she can begin to sort through this stuff. I agree with LC. It's also awesome that your daughter feels fine about you seeing her counselor, she obviously wants you to understand/wants you on board.

Stop second guessing yourself or blaming yourself and just accept and support.

Like Annie it's a hard nock life...

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-29-2014, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
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Liza, just accept and support. It doesn't matter how girly she was or is, and you're making yourself nuts mulling all that shit over.

It's great that she's in counseling so she can begin to sort through this stuff. I agree with LC. It's also awesome that your daughter feels fine about you seeing her counselor, she obviously wants you to understand/wants you on board.

Stop second guessing yourself or blaming yourself and just accept and support.
VERY well said. Click here to enlarge Parenting doesn't come with a "how to" manual for ANYTHING, so we're kinda stuck feeling like anything we try could possibly lead to epic failure. Like Dubby said, stop second guessing or blaming yourself. The fact that your daughter came out to you at all shows she trusts you and needs your support.

Maybe through counseling, active listening, and full on love and support, she can figure out who she is a little easier and everyone involved can grow a little closer. Click here to enlarge
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 10:00 AM
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I think that, even when we are totally okay with gay/transgender/bisexuality, it's still a shock and takes awhile to accept and sink in when its our own kids.

Therapy/counseling for all of you is a fantastic idea, because even if you love and accept, you still need to learn how to come to terms with the changes. Your DD needs to learn how to accept and grow with this new identity, so any support she can get is great.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 10:08 AM
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My dd had decided that she was bisexual once and then changed her mind the following day. I think the teenage years are about trying on different identities and seeing what fits and feels most comfortable. I think it's nice that we live in a time where our kids can experiment a bit without the same kind of judgement being passed as when we were in high school, at least in many places. I pretty much had the feeling that she would probably realize she wasn't, but I didn't make a big deal about it either way. I just told her that she should take time to figure this stuff out, there is no rush, and she doesn't have to finalize anything one way or another right now.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-30-2014, 12:05 PM
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I think that this time in life is very confusing, and society is talking about these issues out in the open.

Is she really feeling transgender, like she believes she was born in the wrong sex body?

There is a huge amount of space between lesbian and transgender. My sister identifies as nonbinary gender or genderqueer. Though the terms aren't really interchangeable.

I think you should find your local PLAG chapter and get some support.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-31-2014, 06:19 AM
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it can be a bitch to figure out your sexual identity. i know of so many people, myself included, who are well into their 30s and 40s who still aren't sure where they stand. Just be there for her while she figures this out. She may swing from one thing to another half a dozen times or more before she finally figures out who she is.

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2014, 12:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilBad View Post
I think that, even when we are totally okay with gay/transgender/bisexuality, it's still a shock and takes awhile to accept and sink in when its our own kids.

Therapy/counseling for all of you is a fantastic idea, because even if you love and accept, you still need to learn how to come to terms with the changes. Your DD needs to learn how to accept and grow with this new identity, so any support she can get is great.
I agree with this.

I have never even heard of pansexual. off to Google.

I think it says a LOT about her trust/self-confidence/etc., telling you and not being afraid to proclaim it publicly Click here to enlarge
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 05:31 PM
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I would encourage her to read a bit about people who are genderqueer or have non-binary genders and/or talk to people who identify that way.

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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-24-2014, 07:01 AM
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I agree with Orchid, and well everyone else. That age is so so hard to begin with, and add into it coming into and find your sexuality. I'm happy for you that she feels comfortable confiding in you and it sounds like you are doing everything right right now.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-30-2014, 04:06 PM
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My daughter has been dating a girl for six months. I don't think she is bisexual our a lesbian... I fully expect this will be something she decides isn't what she wants forever. I totally get what you are feeling right now even though it's a different circumstance.

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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 08-04-2014, 09:21 AM
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I disagree that you should just accept and support this right now. I think you should be asking eleventy-billion questions, and I think you're on the right track talking to a counselor to determine if she really is TG, if it's depression, or if this is a phase she's going through. Being 13 is a time for self-discovery and experimentation, but it's also a hormonal nightmare. Todo had a good point about all of the press lately, too.

My nephew was 17 when he came out as transgendered. My brother had a really hard time with it at first, and I think he was embarrassed and unsure when he called to talk with me about it. I think the hardest part for him was the loss of his own expectations. For 17 years Mike had this image of his beloved little girl growing into a beautiful woman, of one day walking her down the aisle, and of her becoming a mother. He needed time to mourn that loss; I would, too.

A few days before my nephew's 18th birthday, Mike and his ex-wife took their daughter to the courthouse and left with a son; they legally changed her gender to male on the birth certificate. It was an amazing gift, and I have never been more proud of my brother.

There were some social repercussions (such as his boyfriend dumping him), but his family and most of his friends were very supportive and accepting. My nephew seems happier now, and much more comfortable in his own skin.

Whatever the outcome, I hope that your family's able to find the answers you need, and that your daughter's surrounded by friends and family who will love and support her.



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