A mother from a small town in New Zealand has opened up about helping her daughter live as female, and has a great message of acceptance for anyone who thinks their kid might be trans.
Hope Maihi opened up to the New Zealand Herald about her daughter Ollie’s need to transition and why she thinks the age of six is definitely not too young for some kids to realise their gender identity.
She said she and Ollie’s dad Bryan had always thought she was feminine, but that they first thought she might be transgender when she was two-and-a-half.
The primary school student started showing “challenging” behaviour, having tantrums and trying to wear dresses she had taken from her school.
“She’d also take my tops to wear as dresses and wanted long hair more than anything else, so would put a pillow case on her head and pretend it was hair.
“We thought it might be a phase, but something in me knew it was more than that,” Hope told the Herald.
Once Ollie was three, her parents decided to let her wear dresses at home but that she still wore boy’s clothes when she was out in public.
Hope added: “It didn’t last long because it made her so unhappy and we could see that.
“The behaviour got worse and so did her unhappiness.”
She was eventually diagnosed with gender dysphoria but many doctors were unwilling to listen, or simply attempted to make her wear more gender-neutral clothes rather than girl’s clothes she wanted to wear.
Hope said she had had enough when Ollie cried when she told her she had to use the boy’s toilets at school.
After approaching the school, Hope said: “They were awesome and let her use the girl’s toilets and in May this year, changed Ollie’s gender on their records.”
On Ollie’s birthday in 2015, Hope said her daughter cried because she was told she could wear the clothes she wanted.
The proud mother said: “I actually had a little cry to myself because it was a reality.
“I’d realised that stopping her from being herself wouldn’t make her happy and it hadn’t for such a long time.
“You could see the difference in her from the day we changed her whole wardrobe.
“Ollie is Ollie and we love her for who she is and that’s never going to change,” Mrs Maihi adds.