Trans – the Early Years

When X was little (and I’ll refer to him as female because back then, that’s all we knew), I went out of my way to make sure that she had non-gendered or any gendered toys. She got a tool bench for her 3rd birthday, because, dammit! That’s why. She played in the mud. We caught worms together and made a worm farm.
When the day came that she asked for a Barbie (and she had to ask, I wasn’t about to bring those freakish things into my house on my own), I cried a little inside. My well-rounded, take-care-of-herself, change-her-own-oil girl wanted a Barbie! Nooooooooo! But as it worked out, they were soon zip-lining across the living room on some yarn. Shortly after that, one of them was wearing a full-body parachute designed entirely by my little girl. (Is it here that I should mention that around this same period, when she insisted on bringing all the barbies in the tub, I came back into the bathroom to find all the dolls floating peacefully with balloons over their heads? Maybe not.)
At any rate, I started to relax. About the Barbies, and a lot of things. I felt confident that my little one would be just fine. We moved through elementary school with relative ease, at least socially. She had friends who were girls, but also spent lots of time with a male cousin her age. Fine, I thought. Good. I had grown up with only sisters, and boys were somewhat a of a mystery to me for a good long time. She would have an advantage, some insight into the male psyche.
She was a good kid – kind, accepting. In fourth grade, she won an award for “Tolerance.” She was always rooting for the underdog, had a thirst for equity for all. She couldn’t abide anything (human or not) suffering.
At the end of fifth grade, she announced that a friend of hers was going to a Catholic all-girls school for sixth grade. And that she wanted to go, too. Whaaaaat? So, we gave it a try.
As it turns out, the tolerance mindset was not in abundance at this particular school. Some of the girls had less than kind things to say about, well, probably just about everyone, but in particular gays and lesbians. My little one had grown up knowing and loving my gay and lesbian friends. In no way could she tolerate this. On to the second new school in the same number of years.

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