Seen this story so many times this week, so nice to see it with the right pronouns :)
For a full and successful transition, the school simply cannot segregate the child as ‘other’. Forcing her to use the disabled toilet and play on the boys’ team will create a social vacuum that will further confuse her classmates and naturally result in her being ostracised in later years. Rather than put a line through her former gender, the school has essentially drawn a line *under* it, allowing outside forces (other parents) to dictate her upbringing. School is difficult at the best of times, but whoever authorised this sex change has clearly not fully understood the wider implications.
There is an issue here you’re not addressing. When she changes out of her clothes, biologically, she is still a male so she can’t change with the girls. This is a problem when people are transitioning. Since it will still be a number of years before she will be able to undergo the surgery, she’ll have to change in a seperate area or change with the boys.
The kids in her class have more compassion than adults. I applaud them.
Sorry, that screams of cissexism to me. Your gender is not defined by your genitalia. The girl is a girl whether she has had “the surgery” (which many transgender individuals never even get anyway, especially FtM transgender people) or not, and her wishes to be seen as one should be respected right from the start of her transition. Transgender people have a hard enough battle trying to get others to recognise them as their preferred gender when others insist that they’re “still a boy/girl” just because of their genitals.
The school is perfectly capable of finding other ways of socially including the girl with other girls without inducing an “OMG penis in the room!” panic. I agree with Paolo that socially excluding her from the other girls will have a very negative effect, on her mental wellbeing and self-esteem especially.
Hi Kale, I TOTALLY agree with you. However the radfems from TS/IS will agree with neither of us. Unfortunately, they can be just as hateful, it seems, than the worst persecutors of Trans Human Beings.. The have often persistently stated, “I don’t care how you self-identify, if you have a penis, stay out of my bathroom.” That attitude is based upon their contention (without supportive data) that Trans people are potential rapists and pedophiles…dangerous to women and children. Huggs, jami
Do you really think that the idea that a trans girl should “change with the boys” is a safe or acceptable suggestion? Please take some time to consider the welfare of the person who is statistically at by far the greatest risk of being abused in this situation.
Sorry, I don’t quite understand. In what way is it at all acceptable to force a ten-year-old girl to choose between explicit ostracization and othering, or changing her clothes in front of boys? And what relevance does surgery have, exactly? I could see where you’re coming from if you were saying that she should always change with the boys because that’s how she was born, or something – I mean, it would be horribly cissexist, but straightforwardly so, at least. But why would surgery be the big difference? Are you suggesting that the other girls will be horribly scarred by maybe, possibly seeing a penis? Or is it just that she’s not REALLY a girl yet, and thus should not be allowed to change with other girls until she no longer has one? I know I probably sound a little hostile – well, I guess I’m feeling a little hostile – but I honestly don’t understand why the penis is apparently the ultimate deciding factor, here.
Goes to show that bigotry is learned. It is great that it is no big deal for the other children. But will they still feel that way in the years to come? Can they overcome the bigotry they learn at home? Also, cheers to the school for their support.
How many of these “adults” that persecute her Christian? http://atheistoasis.wordpress.com/2010/10/19/gay-is-the-new-witch-the-christian-persecution-of-gay-americans/
WOW! That article really blew me away, and saddened me to the core…
That was a depressing read. So many christians…so few lions…
This is an incredible posting. I could not read it all because I’ve read far too much of the kind of ignorant hateful treatment of gay/lesbian/trans kids in schools and I am over full. The answer for all of these cases of child abuse by bigots and the schools who support them by not taking responsibility and intervening is to sue the school boards. That really gets their attention. You can only affect change in these schools by putting the school boards members’ asses on the line.
Congratualations to the young ladies transgender team of friends standing up for equality and her, thats what real freinds do , they simplly love you for who you are , no matter what race or gender or sexual orientation you are, thats how you tell if a person is a true freind or not , that take that stand for you and others victimized by racism and prejudice and bigotry, every time and we must continue be their for the entire worlds human rights as women , lgbt famiilies, and minorites, to leave happy peaceful safe lives, you stand up for love, and harmony, and stand against anything that causes harm to others families out of spite and hatred, thats why schools must make it mandatory that gay alliances are in place for children bullied and harrassed and have faculty, gay mentors as well, as counselors also, every life is valulabe if you havent become a monster and start killing and rapping and terrizeng others, its good just to be good, its a good feeling inside to care for others,
Now for the rest of the school , the childs mother is going to have to sue the school along with the aclu for any further harrassment of her child what she persoanlly is dealing with is enough for little own self to deal with or understand how evil and hateful others can be to others , hatred and bigotry is traumatizing to adults and horrifically more so to children enough to cause some that do not understand the evil abuses and mean spirited people to go and commit suicide , feeling unloved, that why hatred and bigotry is a crime the at leads to more crimes against humanity, and destroys lives, unnecessarily, people need to leave others alone, if they dont understand things , that fine, but you dont have the right, to abuse others just because they are not you, if they are not harming others you live and let live and alone, and go on your way each day, just being curtious to others as you would want done to you , even with your curiosities,
The aclu and the lgbt community and human rights groups must now make sure this child is not further stigmatized by the falculty of this school nor the childrens parents and they had better hold some schools parent and faculty meetings without the child there and get it made clear that snide remarks hurtful to the child will call for harsh reprimands and firings of the faculty and parent in truoble as well just pick up their kids from school and go home on about their business , because the child is not thier business and the children obviously have more sense and hearts than the adults, the child needs to play on the girl PE team this is who she is now and the boys team is in appropriate for her and to rough for her, and the aclu had better fix this problem along with the bathroom problem concerning that school immediately or file a lawsuit , parent you start defending your children, and standing of for the love of your child you brought them into this evil cruel world, you love them,
I don’t think the ACLU will have much say in this matter considering this incident is occuring in the United Kingdom.
I find it helps if you read the article before commenting. . .
When did we fight and lose the Counterrevolutionary War? I could have sworn that Worcester Massachusetts was stil in the United States, but c’est la guerre I suppose…
Worcester, Worcestershire is in England. This is a UK story. The Worcester News is a local paper from the UK.
Not to mention that the website is .co.uk, right below Pink News is “Europe’s Largest Gay News Service”, and that right above the article’s title it says, “UK”….
Hmm…very young to have made this decision and the supporting argument of a male child playing with girls things is rather weak – rather common behaviour, at that age, I would have thought.
( My credentials – I’m four years post operative M to F )
I knew when I was far younger then ten, I just didn’t have the courage to and the strength to tell anyone until I was 18, so I disagree with your opinion.
The argument seems weak maybe because some of us have learned that your identity isn’t defined by the toys we choose as children.
Maybe its not so young if you have the resolve and conviction then anything is possible at a young age. It means one grows up and thinks a little older. It is doable with a few obstacles one must overcome x
Most transsexual children seem to be making their true gender known between two and five these days. Those in the television documentaries all seem to have done. So this child is not at all young. I myself made it clear to my mother some weeks before my third birthday. I was certain I did not want to be big, hairy, smelly, bald, and gruff, and being like a woman would be fine. I read about Jorgenssen’s and Cowell’s surgeries at 6 and knew that had to be part of my future too. I knew about hormones by 9 and was in desperate fear that not being allowed them would ruin my life. Fortunately I suffered very little pubertal damage. And my “credentials” are (only because you stated yours), having been transitioned 41 years. It is beyond time that later transitioners stopped undermining the needs of transsexual children.
I too knew at the age of 5 that I was really a girl. It is not just the toys we choose to play with, it is about a deep knowledge within that we know our true genders. Unfortunately I realised the truth about myself at about the same time that Christine Jorgensen story made headlines around the world and I realised from my father’s reaction that it was something I needed to keep hidden or lose the love of my parents. I applaud the parents of this young girl – she will get the love and support from those who love her and will not suffer the years of mental anguish trying to be somebody we are not.
I’m delighted that her peers are accepting of her and hope that the adults learn from their children – seems unlikely but you never know.
It’s awesome to see somebody making such a life-changing descision at the age of ten, a time when other people are normally living your life for you. It was hard enough for Billy Elliott to swap boxing for ballet so you can imagine what that child is going through.
You want to imagine what this child is going through? Every morning, first thing, she is fearfully checking in the mirror in case her face has changed as she has slept, testing her voice in case it has deepened, measuring how much her feet and hands have enlarged. She may even fear going to sleep. She knows it is a desperate race between her body’s betrayal and the cruel and arbitrary rules laid down by psychologists with no experience of a life such as hers. She knows all of this is simply because there is a penis on her body and that makes her hate it more and more. She will be wishing against wish that her breasts would grow instead and that she could just be a girl, with hopes of being a mother. She may sometimes spend hours curled up with a cushion on her belly, imagining being pregnant. She probably often feels the years ahead seem unbearable. She may contemplate self-harm or suicide. None of that is awesome. She probably hates that her life is being discussed on a gay site.
The fact that adults/parents choose to abuse a child thinking it is acceptable says it all about the adults/parents.
Again, I question is those clearly bigotted adults/parents should any where near a child because I can’t think their irrational behaviour is in the childs interests.
Rather sad that the school thinks this child should be taking gym class with males. I can understand the issue around a different change area since this is also the age where many children are becoming less comfortable with body changes as puberty takes place. It has nothing to do with “cissexism”, don’t be ridicules.
But if this kid is addressed as female through out school, then it makes no sense for her to be then forced into a male gym class and have her as a target by some of the males for physical bullying.
I’m not sure why Penny thinks this age is young since most people born with transsexualism knew it or knew something was wrong at an extremely early age. Being able to finally live as you know yourself to be earlier rather then later allows for better socialistion and medical outcomes. And tell me where the heck is it mentioned about deciding she was based around what she liked to play with?
And these so called adults who get off on bullying her and calling her names…….
I doubt that, at 10, this child’s primary concern is whether she changes for PE with the girls or separately. She has already suffered seven and a half years of being forced to be treated wrongly for her declared gender. Her greatest concern is probably that her body is not changing as are those of other girls around her, and may be changing in the same way as boys’. Knowing that her parents have agreed with the disgraceful UK children’s clinic that she must wait for 2 more years before being allowed even the product that will halt puberty, and probably 6 years before she can have the hormones that will give her the puberty her peers are experiencing right now, is probably well nigh unbearable. That she will have to wait at least until 18 to be allowed reassignment surgery is probably beyond imagining. Why is it that the age of consent for transsexual people is enforced by denial of surgery as at least 18, when for everyone else it is 16?
Forcing her to change with boys, or do specifically boys PE would be clear indirect discrimination under the Equality Act, though which she is clearly protected. It would be important to ensure that was not done. My recollection of PE in a boys’ school was that it was all focused on building and using upper body strength, of which I wanted none, had none, and developed none. It was nonetheless humiliating. I delayed showering until after everyone else on all but one occasion, when I was “whipped” into the shower corridor by the master, and fainted when confronted by a mass of erect members in the steam. I awoke to smelling salts. No child should suffer that.
Congratulations to the child and her parents too for stanidng up for who she is but shame on the other adults for critising her.
You go girl!