(via SF Globe)
(I don’t know about the rest of you, but I cried about halfway through.)
Ryland’s parents are about the same age as my children. My daughter would probably be like Ryland’s parents – letting nature, not politics, determine Ryland’s life. My son, not so much.
As a parent, I counted fingers and toes when my kids were born. I was glad they both heard me clapping my hands and they both jumped when the camera’s flash went off. I didn’t find out until later that they did not have the GD I had, and Ryland has. That is one of the problems parents face – their child won’t start being who the child wants to be until several years down the road. Acknowledging their child’s GD, and doing something positive, is not as simple as repainting the child’s room.
The parents’ hope and ambitions and love for their child is put at risk when their child turns out to be someone that they weren’t expecting or had grown use to raising. And Ryland’s future is at risk if the parents ignore the signals and continue down a path that the child is rejecting. This, fortunately didn’t happen in Ryland’s case and for Ryland and Ryland’s family’s benefit.
I admire the parents’ attitude toward repairing their child’s issues. First, with the cochlear implant, which by itself is an extremely politically charged issue, and then with Ryland’s GD. I also appreciate the effort they expended to RE-introduce their son to their friends – good for them and for Ryland. I suspect many parents with TG children try to hide their ‘problem’ and the child learns he or she is a freak and has to learn to live in a very hostile environment. This may be part of the reason the suicide rate is so outlandishly high.
I, together with a bunch of my girlfriends went to see Laverne Cox in march at the Nourse Theater in San Francisco. After her talk, she open the stage to questions submitted during the talk. One of the hand written questions came from a 6 year TG girl who asked “I’m 6, and I get bullied. Since I get teased at school, I go to the bathroom in the office. What can I say to the kids who tease me?” She was brought her up on stage to have Laverne reiterate Laverne’s childhood anguish: “You’re perfect just the way you are,” Cox told the youngster once he (sic) arrived on stage accompanied by his mother and uncle. “I was bullied and called all kinds of names, too. And now I’m a big TV star … Just know you are amazing and that you are chosen.”
I wish every father, mother, grandparent, sibling, school friend will learn to accept these children for who they are and who need to understand they are loved, they are not freaks and the world should be theirs if they will get help being who they are.
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