About This Site


When I found myself learning about my son’s transition, I felt alone.  I was certain I was the only one in my immediate area experiencing something for which I felt unprepared, and for something I wished I could, instead, avoid.  I  wasn’t sure where to start looking for support.  My son was 24 years old, queer and in the midst of hormonally transitioning (FTM).  The support groups and websites I did find did not provide the answers or insights for which I was looking.  Dear friends were compassionate, but had as little experience with transgender issues as I.  Several websites I found for parents of transgender youth shared a narrative of children being “trapped in the wrong bodies.”  I  now understand that such a narrative  CAN resonate for some, but my son was instead trapped in a binary world that didn’t allow for any variance in self-expression.  I have since learned that self-expression is not confined to one story or one shared experience! It is my goal that this site offers mothers support as they navigate new meanings and a deeper appreciation of their child’s individuality.

In addition, I am hopeful that for those that seek it- this will be the hand that reaches you when you need it most!  It is ironic that I am blogging now-now when I have already passed through the “What did I do wrong?!” stage and finished “looking for my dreams” instead of focusing upon my son’s. I will share reflections of that earlier time as well as where I find myself today.

Please take a moment to look at my different blogs, the guest blogs, and the shared articles and resources. It is my hope that this website may assist you in your personal journey when you need support most.

You are NEVER alone. Allow yourself time! Embrace the journey!

As my son told me early on, “You will have your own process.”

340 Responses to “About This Site”

  1. Sfirah April 16, 2012 at 2:41 am #

    I❤ you!

  2. Quinn April 16, 2012 at 4:39 am #

    As a friend of your wonderful son, and a mother myself, I am so happy that he is lucky enough to have you for a mom. Thank you for being a really great example of what it looks like to support and love your child.

  3. Lisa Keating April 16, 2012 at 6:25 am #

    I founded a gender variant play group in Tacoma, WA for my son & other children like him. My husban & I also went to PFLAG searching for resources & were treated with kindness, yet we were told that they didn’t have services for families. It was suggested for us to look for groups in Seattle but that’s not our community. I wanted something in my own backyard. I decided to take action & launched “My Purple Umbrella” in February of this year.

    We have received tremendous support & assistance from the community & tapped into a true need. Our larger goal is to create chapters in cities around the country. At this time, we are in the beginning process of filing for non-profit status. Cheryl Kilodavis, author of “My Princess Boy”, has been consulting & advising us. My husband & I are always grateful learning of additional resources.

  4. Renee April 16, 2012 at 4:05 pm #

    You are both so inspiring for the journey you are on and the mother/child bond you share. I hope this site becomes a valuable support for other families who are working through similar transitions.

  5. Marybeth Markham April 16, 2012 at 9:57 pm #

    SO pleased to have found this wonderful site. I am a therapist in Spokane, WA and the majority of my clients are transgender…and among those some young ones. Very happy to have this to share with them and their families! Thank you!

    • Kristen June 8, 2014 at 1:42 pm #

      My 23 yr old daughter recently move to Washington for a “new start” and just revealed to me she wants to be a boy. She is consulting with dr’s re: having a full mastectomy and cries often about how she hates being a girl and hates her body. I live in Tucson and feel very helpless and worried. I want her to be happy. This is no longer a phase. I need somebody to help me process this. Help!!!

      • transmom June 16, 2014 at 3:16 am #

        Hi Friend! I am so sorry that I am just getting to your note only now. I had my right knee fully replaced and was really out of it for awhile. I hope you are hanging in there and this finds you in a better place!!!

        How frightening for you to learn of these HUGE changes with your child when you are so far away!! It’s so tough being a mom away- I know!! My daughter also moved to WA (from CA) and after attending college there, came to the same conclusion- that “she ” was transgender and would be transitioning to become male. I frankly didn’t know ANYONE transgender so I really had a hard time processing it all. I want you to take lots of deep breaths and trust me when I say this is going to be okay!! You new SON is the same child you always loved and will always love- just with different hair and shape…but HE WILL BE HAPPY!!! And someday, like I have finally experienced…he will come into himself and you will FINALLY see him enjoy a sense of peace. And you, too, will enjoy that same peace- FINALLY!

        Meanwhile, have you found a parent group to help support you in Tucson? I actually know someone that is coming there with her (now) daughter to have surgery this coming week! Talk about traumatic!! I accompanied my son to have his top surgery a couple of years ago…and while it was frightening, he was so excited about it that it kind of forced me into being positive for him. It allowed me to “mother” him in a way that I hadn’t been able to for years- washing his hair and brushing his teeth (they can’t lift their arms for q couple of weeks)…again, knowing this is a GIFT to your child helps the pain and anguish from our end. Does this make sense?

      • Sherry March 16, 2016 at 6:26 am #


        I realize it’s 4 years on but I’d love to hear from you and if you wish, to hear your on going story. Our 21 year old son came to us 6 weeks ago and explained, just as your child did, that living in a girl’s body had caused too much hate for self and heartache and changes had to be made.

        I truly hope your son’s transition has made him a much happier and healthier person. And that you have seen the change as a wonderful rebirth. I will stop right now before I carry on forever but please kbow I am sending you healing thoughts and will think of you tonight in my mediation prayers.

      • transmom March 20, 2016 at 2:34 pm #

        An update would be amazing!!

      • Dee October 12, 2016 at 3:52 pm #

        My 21yr old daughter, that’s just told me that she wants to eat my pansexual transgender 21 year old son everything about that person that I know has changed between those two sentences except for the age I don’t know where to go who did talk to what to do next I’m scared of doing it all wrong for myself my husband who is unsupportive my son who is 17 my daughter who is not my mother my family my friends and just feel like I’m in a Hole by myself I want to do what’s right for everybody but quite honestly I haven’t even begun to mourn the loss of my daughter I just don’t know where to turn next

      • transmom October 12, 2016 at 6:26 pm #

        I want to make sure I understand your first sentences: I believe you are saying that your 21 year old daughter has come out as pansexual/ transgender to you and that you are very worried about the negative reactions from everyone in your family. Is that correct?
        Dee, I get the feeling that you believe that it is your responsibility to react for everyone…but I am hoping that you recognize that you can have your OWN, personal reaction! If you want to be there for your daughter, I hope you will be able to say that to your family members. I hope that you could suggest to each person to make their own decision. I hope that you are able to remind them that this is your child’s identity- not theirs. While they may not agree with her, it is her decision alone to choose how to live her life! Yes, you may be disappointed with her choice, you may not agree with her lifestyle, it may even be in conflict with your values. But she is an adult. She has the right to feel at peace within herself. It will take time for everyone to take this news in and adjust!! Please give yourself time. Share your struggle with your daughter. Tell her you are trying! Let your family members know you can’t simply dismiss her from your life because you don’t agree with her…you will continue to love her!

    • Carol April 17, 2016 at 9:58 pm #

      Well, I would like to know how a parent deals with this when there were no signs during childhood from his 3 other brothers or Mom and Dad or friends…until age 30?????All he told me one day was that he was starting HRT and I would see a change over the next 6 months….he has given no reason to practitioners or others….has a girlfriend who has managed to get him help having been diagnosed with bipolar disorder….it is very hurtful and has caused a lot of animosity amongst the family…….would like to know of any support groups in the Portland Oregon area……

      • transmom April 19, 2016 at 1:15 am #

        Hi Carol!! In terms of dealing with this when you and his siblings had no idea for 30 years, I think the most recent experiences of Caitlyn Jenner and her family’s reactions are perfect to look to: hee was a “man’s man” that embodied everything masculine and had an entire world “fooled”!! It absolutely IS done- folks are afraid to live their truths because theu do not feel they are strong enough to survive the scrutiny and negative reactions! I also recommend you read Jennifer Finney Boylan’s books!! As a professor, she is a great writer!!

        Here is great news for you! There are wonderful resources in Portland!! Here are just 3 below. Please check them out!! I wish the very best to you and your family during this journey!!

        – Northwest Gender Alliance
        P.O. Box 4928
        Portland, Oregon 97208-4928
        Phone: (503)533-8787
        Email: nwgaweb@gmail.com

        -Portland’s LGBTQ community center:

        -Check out Trans* Oregon:

      • Kerrie May 4, 2016 at 3:55 am #

        I’m in the same boat my son is married with kids 28yo never a sign brothers and sisters never picked anything came out of the blue, blokes, bloke now saying he will be starting hormone treatment, everyone is supporting it but I can’t bring myself to talk about it with his siblings, they all know we are found out by message a few days ago. It’s a real kick in the teeth

      • transmom May 10, 2016 at 11:18 pm #

        Kerrie- I’m sure it does feel like a kick in the teeth when you are not expecting this!! Take your time- don’t expect yourself to have the same positive and supportive reaction that everyone else has if that is not what you are feeling. But DO sit with it and write about it- get all your fears and disappointment- maybe anger? on paper…you need to make room for your own feelings. This is YOUR journey, too- be kind to yourself and take your time being thoughtful!! This will always be your son, so you get to come to understand this in your own process!!

      • SHIRLEY JONES August 20, 2016 at 2:56 pm #

        I know how that feels. My 21 year old MARRIED son just broke it to us. His wife is being very supportive of his decision. I on the other hand am grief-stricken! And have to say I don’t think I am ever going to get past the way I feel right now. The world has stole my son with lies…how can you “make” yourself happy with a man made body? I’m almost 50yrs old and if there is one thing I have learned it is you have love what you have and love yourself.

      • transmom September 7, 2016 at 6:54 pm #

        Hi Shirley. Thanks for writing! I want you to know there was a time (4 years ago) when I, too, absolutely believed that I would never get past my grief. You, too, can become less shell-shocked as time goes on. I encourage you to focus on trying to search for understanding so that you do not become locked inside your pain!

        There are certainly situations in which we are forced to “love what we have”. However, consider that live in a culture that offers us all kinds of opportunity for change. Our culture ENCOURAGES us to self-examine, become our best selves, alter our appearances, read and follow self-help books, consider plastic surgery…the list is endless and this is not even about our trans-children. Their journey is something different: it is self-driven; a private knowledge of struggle that we cannot fathom. Thier goal is to be able to successfully project an outward appearance that matches what only they know to be their true self. This is, in fact, the only way for them to be able to “love themselves”.

        Hang in there, Shirley. This is a tough road- especially when you thought you knew and understood your son! He’s turning your world on its head. But with that said, this is really about your son and how you can find your love for him and make that love available to him. Hang in there!

    • Kelly May 2, 2016 at 7:44 pm #

      My child just came out to me as FTM. I have always known that transgender is real, but I am finding my transition a little more difficult than expected — I cannot seem to call her, him or Conner instead of Cora. I want to honor my child. I want to support my child but this step is hard. Part of the reason for that is my husband. He is refusing to deal with it. I don’t know how to balance. We live in a small mountain town in CO — very conservative community unfortunately. I could really use some guidance to get us all help.

      • transmom May 10, 2016 at 11:14 pm #

        Hi Kelly! You are doing the right thing by starting here! As you read my postings over the past four years and all of the many contributions from moms from all over the country and beyond, you will see that YOU ARE NOT ALONE!! We ALL struggle with this change- this is NOT easy!! ESPECIALLY when we are having to face this without complete support from family members!! I encourage you to continue to reach out- even if it is through sharing your feeling online like this, or seeingif there is a couselor in your area that you can travel to every few weeks maybe? I am happy to speak to you by phone and know other moms that would be happy to as well!! How old is your child? You can always message me on my FB page with this same name, “Transforming Love: Support for Mothers of Transgender Children”

      • Kelly May 13, 2016 at 9:15 pm #

        Thanks transmom. I found a counselor that we will go to tomorrow. I am hoping that he can help guide us through this transition as a family. I am in this weird place where I am desperate for guidance but almost afraid to get it. I posted here, but was afraid to come back and read. I also realize I put too many details in my username and post. Is there a way I can edit that and change my username?

      • transmom May 17, 2016 at 7:44 am #

        Hi Kelly- I just your previous post. I’m so happy you found a counselor to help you and your family!! I understand your reluctance to get the guidance- I had that feeling, too! It’s like if you just stay paralyzed, it won’t all be so real….tackling this is hard because new can be so scary! But you have this!! You will be great!!

  6. lauren April 17, 2012 at 7:40 pm #

    so much love to you!

  7. Sheila linderman April 19, 2012 at 1:03 am #

    I feel so lucky to know both of you! Big hugs, although not too tightly to D for right now.

  8. Sheri Mobley April 19, 2012 at 2:58 am #

    The fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree. You are both loving and accepting people. You are the BEST example of a mother and child (albeit now an adult child). Love you both. XO Sheri

  9. Cyndi April 19, 2012 at 5:29 am #

    Awesome! Love you guys… great picture❤

  10. Terri April 19, 2012 at 5:38 am #

    Don’t know who’s luckier. You or D. You’re both phenomenally remarkable for showing others how to travel new roads. Xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  11. Carol Berk April 20, 2012 at 4:36 am #

    Know that you’re both surrounded by the love you so deserve. You are indeed truly worthy.

  12. Roxanne Kaplan May 3, 2012 at 11:04 pm #

    My son is 27 yrs old and is also FTM. I think it is wonderful that you are offering help to those in crisis…bless you!

    • transmom May 14, 2012 at 11:31 pm #

      Thanks soooo much! I know that I always feel better talking to other moms having similar experiences!!! Continue to embrace the journey the best way you know how!

  13. Julie M. May 8, 2012 at 1:23 am #

    You and B. are a shining example of how it should be. D. looks so happy, and in the end that’s what it’s all about–raising happy, healthy, kind children. You’re such an inspiration to me!

  14. Sheryl Diamond May 17, 2012 at 8:21 pm #

    You are a fabulous mother and so happy to hear how much D loves you as we all do!

  15. janet October 5, 2012 at 5:41 pm #

    Thank you for filling this void by sharing your journey.

  16. janet September 15, 2013 at 8:27 pm #

    I am new to this, just got the news yesterday.. Don’t know how to feel about things yet. still in shock! My son is 18 years old,.a lot of tears so far.

    • transmom November 7, 2013 at 1:18 am #

      Sorry for the late response…I have been away from blogging since summer. Guess I became complacent when all things were going well on my end. Apologies!
      I hope you are doing well as you travel on this journey…by now the initial shock has passed and you have started to deal with your new reality….I am wondering how you are doing. Have you found support in family? Friends? Hopefully, this crazy-making stage will subside and you will find support as your child finds themselves!

  17. mary December 13, 2013 at 3:00 am #

    My son won’t talk of see me since his desire to go trans. Its as if he blames me. I miss him so much my heart hurts. He used to talk to his sister and would say horrible things about me, but now he won’t even speak to her because she lives with me.

    I don’t understand how any of this got this messed up. All I know is I don’t want any more time to pass its been 7 years since I’ve seen him.

    • transmom January 2, 2014 at 7:20 pm #

      I am so sorry to hear about your struggle to communicate with your son! As mothers, we only want to be able to stay connected and love our kids unconditionally. With time passing as it has, I think it just may have gotten “easier” for him to stay out of touch, rather than deal with the feelings that led to this estrangement. I believe that you should never lose hope…keep trying to connect…offer to start anew! Good luck to you- may 2014 be the year that you reunite!

  18. Cathy Jo Retter July 24, 2014 at 10:35 pm #

    I am in the continuing process of trying to educated myself…I had always thought of my daughter as gay…now she’s telling me she is transgender…has completed 3 months of being on “T”…female to male…she is 28…she officially told me she was attracted to women in 2005…now she wants to change in body from female to male…I really am trying to understand…this is the first site I have googled on this topic…any help would be appreciated.

    • transmom July 29, 2014 at 6:47 pm #

      Dear Cathy Jo,
      I hope that you realize that you are NOT alone in your feelings of confusion…I, too, thought my son was gay…I knew he was different but honestly, transgender issues were not even on my radar…I knew gay folks so that was a comfortable way for me to understand him…although I wasn’t understanding him at all as it turned out! It took me time..and reading…and finding a local support group…and a great therapist to finally wrap MY head around the identity of my child. I am soooo happy to say that I am confident that you, too, CAN absolutely get to a place of comfort and acceptance! You are taking those first steps right now in the right direction! Like Gloria that also just wrote in…you are a loving mom that just wants to continue loving her child…you ARE!! Keep reading and seeking support! Write any time!!

  19. Gloria July 25, 2014 at 8:12 pm #

    My beautiful daughter is becoming a boy. For 20 years – I had a daughter. She was a model. We shared clothes
    We traveled and shared other experiences.
    Today, she told me that her name has been changed. Her license and passport too. She is turning 24.
    I am still in shock!
    I have watched her change. She cut her beautiful long hair. She started growing facial hair and dressing like a man.
    I have had to erase the past 20 years of my life.
    We no longer have family photos
    What do I do?

    • transmom July 29, 2014 at 6:28 pm #

      Dear Gloria,
      First give yourself a hug- you are seeking help and that means that you are heading in the right direction! I know now it is hard to believe, but you do NOT have to erase 20 years of joy…those 20 years brought your (then) daughter great joy and love and has allowed truth to come out of your relationship! Yes, maybe the family photos are something that your son wants you to put away…and I respect that request…but I would recommend that you choose one or two pictures that YOU love and want to remember and you place those somewhere private- where you can see them and enjoy them. You child is not dead or gone- only transformed- and now the authentic person they need to be! Yes- this is ABSOLUTELY a huge shock for you…it doesn’t sound like you anticipated this change. Have you been able to sit down and talk about this change and let your son know that you are struggling? I hope you will be able to tell him that you are trying to understand, to cope…and to help you understand. I would also hope you could find a local parents support group and even a therapist that is experienced in trans issues! These are things that REALLY helped me out when I was most confused. I promise you…you WILL still be the loving mother that you have always been!! Please let me know how you are doing!!

  20. Aline Queen July 28, 2014 at 4:19 pm #


    I found your blog while doing research for my music project, and saw all of the comments. I wanted to comment and write to everyone:

    My name is Aline Queen, I am a singer-songwriter from NYC and I just released a new music video called “SuperFreak” which was produced by Scott Jacoby (John Legends producer). The video is in the vain of Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful” and was produced by Scott Jacoby (Grammy winning producer-John Legend, Vampire Weekend etc..). It features artists Terra Jole (little person), Brix Nobody (tattoo artist/model), Mem Nahadr, and many others. I wanted to send you the link hoping you could share it with your artists and fans, to raise awareness and celebrate anyone that is unique and different. I thought you all would appreciate knowing about it/watching it, and feel empowered by it.


  21. Donna October 10, 2014 at 7:38 pm #

    I weep as I typed this…. At no time EVER did my son seem anything other then “all boy” then in May 2013 he told me he was going to become a girl. My first that was WHY??? Its not something ANYONE should volunteer for!! IT IS FREAKING HARD WORK BEING FEMALE!!! Oh wait HE is only going to be partly female hormones and then destruction of his physical form to “represent” as female.(if he goes through with the surgery) A name change, hormones, atheist, and a complete change of HIS WHOLE life… This all started in 2012/2013ish time frame. He was 24 at that time. Out of the navy and looking to attend college as pre-med. I was over the moon he was home… and going to go to college in state so we would have more time together. Then it all changed. Now he wants to be a girl/new name/and he is doing “women’s studies” as a college degree.Really? Women’s studies? Guess it is lesson’s in how to be a girl/woman. Who knew? As to that idea … that he always felt like a girl on the inside? Go ahead explain that to me? Cause I as a woman haven’t EVER noted that there is a WAY to Feel Female? Is there one that feels male? He may have felt different… It is presumptive to say he was feeling “female” . Might as well say he was feeling like a giraffe… I have days when I feel DIFFERENT!! IT IS NOT ABOUT MY PHYSICAL VS MENTAL/EMOTIONAL Being!!!! It is the circumstances I am living in and situations I am dealing with… For over a year I TRIED SO HARD!!! Shopping, talking, understanding,research, meetings, kindness, respect, and all a mother gives her children. Here I am months later after EXPRESSING MY OWN FEELINGS… Of how I missed my son and the CONNECTION we shared. How we had much to talk about, the understanding, and deep love… Of how while a parent expects a child to grown and have their own ideas…. that on some level there would still be somethings in common that connects them. I have been dismissed from my son’s life because I thought I was safe to share my feelings even though they were/are still in conflict with this choice. Ignored/unfriended… So my son left for the navy and never returned…. My story is so much more then this…. I mourn … I am angry… I hurt… I am alone….

    • transmom December 4, 2014 at 2:08 am #

      I am so sorry for your loss! Of course you are mourning as well as feeling angry and alone! This is not what you wanted for your relationship – the connection you envisioned having with your adult child- the son you raised. THIS IS HUGE for you as a parent!

      With that said, though, I encourage you to try to imagine how hard it is for your daughter now- she has lost her parent (yes, I know this seems to be her choice right now), but for her reasons, she doesn’t feel able to carry on your relationship. This is a significant loss for BOTH of you. And I am guessing, if she is even at all lucky compared to the majority of transfolk- she will have also lost MANY of the other important supports in her life. I’m not guessing many (any?) friends from the navy have be supportive. Earlier friends? Family? Exactly how many are really supportive now? To COMPLETELY change one’s identity and how one functions in the world as an adult is incredibly, ridiculously difficult. Let’s be honest: isn’t it much more difficult to be male and pass as a female than a female passing as a male? Hormones take time; beards don’t magically disappear; deep voices continue to resonate. Why would she “choose” this?? Imagine wondering every second of the day as you try to negotiate a world that statistically is extremely aggressive and dangerous for transfolk- imagine wondering if you are going to be “outed” publicly, shunned, or ridiculed? I know I would not be able to cope emotionally! Your daughter has guts!- an AMAZING amount of courage to take this on- to live her authentic life!!

      Yes, you DO have your own feelings- but first, you are her mom. Unconditional love means admitting to her that you don’t get it, that you are worried for her, but that NO MATTER WHAT, you will stand by her and love her and accept her. SHE WILL ALWAYS BE YOUR CHILD- no matter if wearing a dress and going by a different name. You wouldn’t question her right to be who she is if she were burned beyond recognition…no need to resort to that now….I believe you CAN recognize your child and love her!! Keep sending those messages out to her- don’t give up!!

      • Donna November 11, 2015 at 4:34 pm #

        It is over a year later…. The only contact I had with my child was a few texts I sent in reference to some their belongings left at my house. Awful texts in response rude and hurtful…. Others who read them were bewildered and shocked… The texts were so unlike my child and did not even come close to reality. My mind whirls on this subject round and round…. trying to bring some type of understanding… truly all I have come up with is this is a Societal Construct that is Popular right now. The avoidance of addressing Mental illness astounds me. It is NOT my/a OPINION… IT IS A FACT!!! Born Male=Boy/Man Born Female= Girl/Woman. So the mental and emotional do not match the physical- Address the Mental/Emotional concerns… Do not alter the physical body…😦

      • transmom November 17, 2015 at 4:50 am #

        Hi Donna- I am dismayed to hear that you think that a child would change their gender merely because it seems “Popular” right now. I gotta tell you, we hear about this on the news, but this is NOT popular: this is a HARD, DIFFICULT life- one that is not widely accepted. Trans folks struggle to find employment, housing and stability. They are frequently scrutinized and doubted alike by strangers as well as the folks that used to be supportive. Trans folks face violence in ways we would never imagine! Yet- they put themselves on the line, day in and day out, living through such challenges because they absolutely must. I wouldn’t last a day- I’m not that brave. This life is not one that ANY transgender individual chooses frivolously!

    • Susan January 22, 2015 at 9:41 am #

      You are not alone. My daughter has just pushed me away on the day prior to her surgery. I had gone all the way to Thailand with her to support her only to be turned upon and accused of all sorts including going there to stop her. Some of her last words to me were ” Quite honestly, I don’t know how I came out of you.” Broken hearted does not begin to describe how I feel. I had no choice except to return home. Her surgery should just be finished around now. I too have been defriended and have no way of contact.

    • Lisa September 6, 2015 at 7:46 am #

      I am so sorry for you. I connected with everything you said. My son has been working in San Francisco for a year and now all of a sudden he came home with this very same news! I was angry, sad , unbelieving, and bitter. I have experienced every emotion over the last 3 weeks that I have ever known. I am beginning to think there is some kind of cult taking over these young people’s minds and twisting them into thinking they are the wrong gender! What is happening to our children? My son hasn’t spoken to me for about two weeks when I expressed my anguish about this! How does a 26 year old good looking guy w
      It’s a strong jaw and almost 6 feet tall think he is a girl? I don’t get it. He even accused me of doing something wrong in my pregnancy blaming me! I am divorced and if he tells my ex-husband I know it’s going to be very scary for him because my ex-husband is not very understanding about anything of that sort. I have gone to church I prayed for him and have not slept much I’m worried about my daughter who’s a type 1 diabetic and how it’s going to hurt her also. He seems to have turned into some selfish person some foolish selfish person I don’t know. I am distraught with pain and agony over this snd my hopes and dreams for him I’m not going to come true.
      I could live with the fact that he might be gay but he says he is not he likes girls. So how is that supposed to work ? He is going to marry another girl who accepts this? Fat chance of that happening. He is so naive! No woman will accept that . I’m afraid my son and most of these kids are suffering from mental illness. Being a woman is exhausting why would anyone want to subject themselves to that! I’m with you some days I don’t feel very feminine so what am I supposed to do then assume I should start becoming a man?? This is all so stupid and confusing and I don’t know what to do or say to him fearing that I will allenate him further!
      I hope your son returns to you. My sister says its just a phase, I think the devil has a hold of these kids and the liberal society is saying it’s ok to be whatever you want! I opt for butterfly then so I can flitter away from this mess!

      • transmom September 6, 2015 at 7:19 pm #

        Thanks for writing, Lisa! You inspired me to write a post that I hope you will read and consider. It may take reading it today and then again in a week, and then again in a month. It is my hope that you will meet your son where he is in his transition- just focusing on the love you share!

      • Carol Schmidtd October 12, 2015 at 9:18 am #

        My age 52 trans “daughter” has a hard time finding and keeping a janitor job with benefits. After we put him through 7 years of post- high-school education, “she” needs help with rent and car expenses. She came out in 2000 and lost her union cleaning job about 4 years ago when it was outsourced.

        Wish I did not feel so resentful! All the extra love and $$$ spent on private high school, etc. were a waste of resources. We now are in our 70s and want to move to a senior residence that will cost much more than our own single-family house. Neither of our kinds will be around to help us in any way. They live in a different state.

        Anyone else have a middle-aged trans kid wanting financial help? If yes, how are you coping?

      • transmom October 12, 2015 at 7:29 pm #

        Yikes, Carol! I hope you can find some support from our moms here!

        To be honest, I have not had personal experience with your particular concerns. I would imagine, however, that this is not solely a problem for adult Transgender folks: I know more and more older parents are having their children come home- not just for a while- but to stay for extended periods! And so many adult children are also requiring ongoing help financially. So many families are experiencing similar issues.

        You may be forced into thinking of yourself first financially. Of course you will always be supportive emotionally for her! You can always help her make calls looking for positions or helping her search online for groups that will be of service to her. But at some point, you need to know that she is an adult and you have to take care of your own future!! Letting your daughter know that this is coming will be important. Reminding her that nothing has or will change your love and devotion is key- but so is reminding her that you and your husband have a responsibility to plan for your future. No one will be taking care of you and your husband, so that needs to be a a high priority. Your daughter can make important decisions and plans when she has advanced notice.

        My opinion: Bottom line: If you are not there for yourself first, you will not be able to be there for your daughter!

        The best to you, Carol!!

    • journeyahead September 7, 2015 at 1:34 pm #

      How are things going for you now? My journey is just beginning and I’m going through all the same feelings that you have expressed. Mourning is a good word, because this whole process has blindsided me and I’m mourning the loss of my child.

      • transmom September 7, 2015 at 8:53 pm #

        Journeyahead, What an apt screen name! I think most moms of transgender kids have to go through this stage of mourning. When we make the important decision to bring a life into the world, we are involved with this child from conception through the remainder (hopefully) of our lives! And with that devotion, comes our trying to bring to them the best in life possible. And so our dreams begin. We see all the possibility for our children and our dreams become enmeshed with theirs. This child that we have come to recognize is now, well, unrecognizable. But it’s so very important to realize that they are not gone, or dead. Thank God, they are only transformed. When my son first became my son, I used to wonder if I would have felt any different had he, instead of becoming trans, had been unrecognizable from being burned in an accident. I realized, had that been the case, I would have also mourned the loss of the child I had loved seeing, but knowing he still the sweet, loving soul I knew, I wouldn’t have taken it so personally. I had to learn to get out of my own way and learn to love my child unconditionally. Turns out, that’s not as easy as it sounds sometimes for some of us. I hope for you, Journeyahead, that the road is smoother than most!

    • saintmagdalena December 8, 2015 at 6:12 pm #

      Donna, I feel your pain. I am also astounded by the lack of counseling and mental health evaluation/consideration necessary before hormones and surgery,etc. Not one on this site has any idea what the long term consequences will be for their children.
      To be happy.
      Be careful about that.
      Mastectomies? Oophorectomies? Genital mutilation? On perfectly healthy bodies in order “to be healthy?”

      • transmom December 11, 2015 at 2:39 am #

        You are right, Donna- we don’t know the future of having these transformative surgeries. At the same time, I can tell you that my son, for one, no longer lives in pain and agony due to his previous chest binding! Unfortunately, binding causes an imbalance in the musculature of the upper body, limits lung capacity, and prevents good posture. Pain in the shoulders, neck, and upper back is a common side effect. Top surgery freed my son from pain. In addition, the hormones and surgery, allowed him to “pass” safely in a world that might otherwise otherwise call him out, cause him violence or even incarcerate him- yes, it is illegal to use the opposite gender’s bathroom. Would YOU have your child endure such pain, degredation, and see them potentially threatened if THEY knew this was what THEY needed for THEIR safety and freedom? Nope! I’m sure you wouldn’t- Let’s give them a life they can actually live!!

    • Cathy February 14, 2016 at 6:12 am #

      I understand completely how you feel. I am angry and you are not alone. I am sorry for your pain and wished I had words of wisdom for you. My son told us two years ago that he aas transgender. Since then he has started college in the same town but rooming with another girl and is posting his self on social media as a woman. My issue that I deal with is that my husband, his father, does not want him back in our house. So the only time I see my child is when I make contact with him outside of our home. I feel once he is finished with college I will no longer see him.

      • transmom February 24, 2016 at 12:14 am #

        That must be sooo hard for you, Cathy! I can imagine that you could feel trapped in this battle of allegiance between your (now) daughter’s father and your daughter. But the relationship that you desire has to be on your terms: only you know if your are willing to “fight” to continue your relationship with your daughter – even under the potential disagreement from your husband. I believe that it is up to you and your daughter to decide what that relationship will be like after college. I believe you need to have that talk with her in person and be able to discuss your fears as well as your hopes for your future relationship!! Good luck to you!!

  22. Sarah January 7, 2015 at 1:41 am #

    Here WE go…

    Such a beautiful day yesterday when my 28 yr old son confided in me that he will be transitioning to become the girl he has always felt he has been inside. I am incredibly proud of him for coming out and honored that he talked with me first. I will be by his side through whatever he goes through in his life, and I look forward to him feeling comfortable in his own skin. My son is a very successful person in so many areas of his life… career, hobbies, friends, family. The one place that I have known for years that he was unhappy was with dating. What he told me yesterday explained all of that.

    My son left the country for a week-long vacation this morning. He told me not to tell anyone yet about his upcoming transformation. Not my husband (his stepdad), not my BFF, not his siblings. Part of his process is to sit with each of these important people in his life and come out in his own way. I support this 150%!

    Now I sit here alone today thinking, “but what about me?” Fortunately my BFF lives in another county and my husband is out of town this week. But I realllllly need to talk to someone. I am mourning my beautiful son right now. It doesn’t matter at this moment that I know this is best for him. Or that I am truly excited for him. Right now I am alone with me and not allowed to discuss this. I have tried to contact support here in the Seattle area, but did not get a reply yet today. So I am sitting here crying, writing on a blog to people I don’t even know, drinking a dirty martini with 2 olives (that’s what I would have shared with my mom when she was alive). Seriously, thanks for having this platform so I can get some of this negativity out of me. But I really need a hug.

    • transmom January 8, 2015 at 9:08 pm #

      Awww- Wish I was there with you to give you a hug- you deserve many! You are a supportive mom that is demonstrating the unconditional love that your now daughter will need!! Please add me as a friend via Transforming love and send me a message- we can talk more privately there!! Meanwhile, keep hanging in there and know you are a GREAT mom-

    • worriedmamma February 16, 2015 at 12:36 am #

      Thanks for writing. You are a tiny bit ahead of my process, and that makes it really helpful to me to read your post. I just heard from my 18 year old son yesterday that he is considering his gender identity, and thinks he might be female. This morning, he showed me the girl’s shirt he bought online last night. I am so glad he trusts me and confided in me, and I am giving him all the support I can.

      I am also experiencing the overwhelming sense of confusion and need to talk –but he asked me not to tell anyone. I’m so proud of him for his bravery, and I know that’s he’s been going through something but he hadn’t been letting me in. So this is a positive — him talking to me, him facing whatever he needs to explore. At the same time, what my greatest fear is — and what I most thot about in the minutes in which we talked — was his safety. His younger sister has struggled with depression and suicidality for a few years, and it’s been very, very difficult. So what I heard him say, in essence, was “I am now at a higher risk for suicide.” I know this is not fair. And I know that it’s a positive that he’s talking to me. But I am so scared.

      • Sarah February 18, 2015 at 10:51 pm #

        Since my last comment, my son has come out to friends and family, with a 99% rate of support. He has said that he feels like he is “cheating the system” due to all of the support he has received. I am working very hard to say “she”, so here goes…

        She picked us up at the airport a few days ago when we returned from a vacation with friends. She was wearing girls clothing and shoes, makeup and boobs! My friend had knitted my former son a cute headband with a flower as a symbol of her support. She put it on immediately and didn’t take it off all day🙂

        We went to the grocery store where she and my husband took off to grab a few things while I chose other things. It was obvious to us that a few people were staring. When we got home, we had a conversation about how it felt to be at the store, dressed as a woman. She said she was self-conscious, but she consciously held her head high and tried to be confident. She said the weirdest part of the day was wearing boobs in front of us, since we know she doesn’t have any yet. I explained that every girl stuffs her bra as she is developing, and that’s just part of becoming a woman.

        So, we are actually having some fun with this new idea and it is bringing us closer, as it seems is happening with you and your child. The suicide rate for transgenders is 40%, from what I’ve read. Why would we not support our kids?

        When I first wrote on this site, I was contacted by a couple of women who had been through what our family is experiencing. I seriously cannot thank them enough for their comments and support. I was also fortunate enough to find a great transgender counselor and support group in the Seattle area. The more people and families I talk to, the more I know we are all going to get through this unusual time in our lives. My youngest daughter is getting married this spring and has always pictured her two siblings walking her down the aisle. That is still going to happen, except she will be escorted by one proud brother and one proud sister.

        I hope you are able to help your child find a support group in your area so that questions can be asked and answered in a safe environment. This is a scary and exciting time for all who know our kids, but ultimately our kids are being authentic to what their hearts tell them.

        I went back and read the journal I have kept for my child. In the beginning I wrote that I didn’t care if he were a boy or a girl. That I just wanted a healthy baby. The feeling is different now that I have known my kid as a boy, but I still ultimately want a healthy child.

      • Tracy March 1, 2015 at 4:30 pm #

        I’m hoping that because you posted a while back, that you’re able to give me some positive news on how things are going.
        My first thought too, was fear! I feel scared for my child’s safety and what people could do to him.
        It’s only myself and his girlfriend that know so far.
        Any advice would be great.

    • Evan's Mom June 22, 2015 at 8:39 pm #

      I hope you are doing better than you were in Jan when you first posted. I know that my son Evan (22) asked the same of me when he first came out as a transgender man. He asked me not to tell anyone. He was away at college and he said he would do it in his own time. Frankly, I was simply a mess for weeks not be able to get support from my husband or my mother. Eventually both of them asked me what was wrong. I was not eating, did not want to work, falling into depression. I did eventually tell both of them before Evan was able to. I made that decision because in order for me to be there for Evan I needed the help of the other two people I trust most in the world beside Evan. When I told Evan he was a bit peeved but I asked him to understand that this is a challenging time for the whole family and we all need to support and love each other through it. He understood and grew to respect my decision. Together we are there for Evan every day and in every way through this transition. My husband and I have grown closer together in the support of our son. It’s a journey and one I would much rather be on with Evan than he withdraw and pull away from us. I always try to keep perspective ..I have a sister who lost her son to a horrible aggressive bone cancer at 22 years old. She will mourn the loss of he child forever. And while our situations should not be minimized, it is certainly better to have our child here with us than not. I hope time has helped. Also as pointed out therapy and support groups are great.

      • transmom June 29, 2015 at 5:53 pm #

        Dear Evan’s Mom- Thanks for checking in on Sarah!! Time can do wonders as we negotiate this often difficult journey. I am happy that you pointed out that your son’s transition has strengthened your relationship with your husband! There are so many positives to be gained through challenges!! I feel more connected, too, to my husband. I feel as if I am more open personally. Having to disclose this to so many people took risk on our parts: would people judge our parenting? Would people negatively judge our child and if so, how would we respond? How will we come across as supportive of our son and not defensive of ourselves? During this process, I learned exactly who mattered in our lives, who steps up when they are needed, and how I, in turn, can be there for folks for all kinds of issues. I applaud Evan’s Mom in checking in on you, Sarah! Please let us know how you are doing!!

    • Cynthia Dickey July 18, 2015 at 3:05 pm #

      I am JUST now reading this…but experiencing the EXACT same thing…I just found out a week ago (my initial post is down below a ways)…I am the only person who knows, and I am SO proud of my son, now daughter…and while he appeaered to be all boy to me before…he has never dated and was always awkward with girls…and I have always been so worried about him for that reason (he’s a 23 year old graduate of UT university…very successful…but never dated)…so this explains SO much. We have been closer this week than we have EVER been…but I am going nuts being alone in the knowing…and at times when I’m alone…still mourning my son. So I would like to know…now that it’s been a few months for you…is it better?

      • transmom July 20, 2015 at 3:37 am #

        Cynthia, I so appreciate your question- and will actually write that out to everyone right now!! Please look for a posting in a bit!!

    • Hopeful in Heart March 23, 2016 at 2:19 am #

      I see that this was written over a year ago, but I applaud you. You are a strong caring woman and I hope you got all the hugs you needed. My arms are now wrapping your heart too🙂 My hope is to be as strong as you in the coming months/years.

      My 28 year old son wrote me a letter me a month ago that he has started his transition to be the girl he has always felt he was. I know this took a lot of courage on his part and I am proud of him for taking that step. We used to have a very open relationship, but when he was 16 and told me that he felt as if he were trapped in a body not his own I dismissed him and his feelings. From that day he has steadily withdrawn from me. I will not make that mistake again. I have regretted that moment for over 10 years.

      Unfortunately, I have not been able to find much support locally. While your now daughter is open with you, my son is still withdrawn. Although he says he wants to me to ask whatever questions I may have, when I ask he does not answer and I become frustrated. I understand every journey is different, but I have to believe that in some ways they are alike.

      Reading your story (and the others) on this site have been helpful. I fear for my son’s journey. It is a difficult path he is embarking and as a Mom, I want to be there for him. Thank you for sharing your story.

      • transmom March 24, 2016 at 3:34 am #

        All of the mothers here are in many ways, warriors! We put ourselves in a painful place for the sake of another. We join our children in a fight which brings us pain and sacrifice. We stand by our children and see to their wounded hearts and spirits. We remain steadfast, even it the face of adversity. Even when some of them blame us. Even when some of us push us away. We continue to love and support unconditionally!
        Hearing that you remain, Hopeful in Heart, helps the other moms here along a similar journey. Thank you! Of course you are worried for your son- you want him to be safe and happy in a world that is often unforgiving and intolerant. As mothers of transgender children, we share the same fear: no matter how old they are…no matter how long ago they transitioned…no matter how smooth that transition was for them…our fears live close to the surface. But by supporting one another, we can see beyond the fear, and be like you, hopeful in our hearts!

      • Leigh April 16, 2016 at 12:01 pm #

        My husband and I just recently found out that our 27 year old son has gone from feeling “gender neutral” to identifying as a female. This has been very hard on us; however, we are really trying to understand but it is very difficult for us. We were also quite upset to find out that his girlfriend was able to confide in all her family first (with his permission) before he told us and the reason we were upset is we have always told him he could come to us about anything, even if we disagreed with him and short of murder, we would always love him. In the past,he has always come to us. My husband and I both are struggling through this with our son and I’m having a hard time for several reasons switching over to saying daughter. One of the reasons is because he and his girlfriend are still together and I see no future of them breaking up. He also made a comment to me that there are such things as transgender lesbians which I’m not sure, but I think he thinks he is. He still very much likes girls also so all of this is quite confusing to us. My husband especially is going through the “what did I do wrong” phase and has also said,”what if the book that has lasted for many years is right?” Don’t get me wrong. He still loves our son no matter what and so do I but we are nearing 70 years old and this is very hard on us after 27 years. Also, when we ask him questions only to try to understand, sometimes he gets irritated by the way we ask the question, but when we ask the question, we are not judgemental. We truly are just trying to understand. I have even found a LGBT/Transgender Support group in our area that I sent to him since they offer free counseling for people that are going through this until they are 28 years old and I sent him the site. I truly do love him and always will but to some extent, my heart is breaking for the loss of our son during his transition and I only hope my husband and I can find a support group for parents in our area. The other thing that bothers us is that he actually said to us, “Maybe this is just a phase I’m going through. I would think if he truly identifies as a female, that he would know for sure and not question if it is a “phase” he is going through. If he is confused, just think of how much more confused we are with what he has recently told us. All we want is for him to be happy and we more than anything, want to understand.

      • transmom April 19, 2016 at 12:53 am #

        Hi Leigh! I hear how difficult and painful this is for you and your husband! I’m sure it was even more painful to know that your son’s girlfriend was disclosing this information to others before you even knew! I personally believe that you will be better off not focusing on that part of this journey if you want to make progress on the greater issues at hand.
        I’m so impressed that you have already found counseling for your son and are continuing to search for the same for yourselves! If you can’t find a parent group, then personal counseling will also be REALLY helpful!! Perhaps the same center to which you referred your son can guide you to that same help!!
        I also recommend that you read one or more of the books on my resource list!!
        There are definitely stages we go through when it comes to loss, Leigh! Blaming ourselves is easy because if we could just “blame it away” we can find some closure. But that just won’t work here- your child has always been your child and as a 27 year old, they are still defining themselves. At 27, he gets to make that call. No, it is not easy to understand the lesbian part of it, but that is just what happens when these transitions take place. For example, from an outsider’s perspective, my son used to be considered a lesbian before his transition. Now he has a girlfriend and – voila! thanks to testosterone, he appears to be a heterosexual male!! But here’s the reality: sexual orientation doesn’t have any business in the discussion here- who your son looks like on the outside- who he identifies as- is one thing…and who he sleeps with is a whole different private conversation!

        Your son has chosen o transition and you are now on a new journey of your own!! We want to remain a part of our children’s lives, so we hop on board and hang on for dear life!! I give you a GREAT DEAL of credit!! It’s never easy to change and the older we become, sometimes the harder it can be….but you two are ON YOUR WAY!!! Keep hanging in there, keep reaching out, and keep up that dialog with your child!! You are amazing parents!!

  23. Sarah Winter February 27, 2015 at 4:54 am #

    My daughter has been transitioning to Male for a few years now. When she first discussed this with me as a teen I was very frightened and went into a deep denial. This couldn’t be happening to my beautiful daughter. I felt that I had a duty to do what I could to keep this from a reality as long as she was under 18. Of course this caused my child to have a very sad childhood. I’m sure he felt very alone and depressed. Most of his time was spent online making friends there.

    With this for many comes anxiety, depression and a deep unhappiness. He lives at home right now as he attends college. We financially support him. He is my youngest child and I have a deep emotional bond to him. The problem is that the true acceptance is still quite a difficult thing for me. He has so much anxiety that even calling out for a pizza is a challenge. Today I took him to a psychiatrist who came out after the visit and told me that if my child commits suicide it is on my head. And that I should pay for all of the t-hormones, surgery or whatever it takes to make her a male.

    I have had gone to this doctor for over fifteen years for many other health related issues. I was stunned by his reaction to me. I am not sure what my son told him but I must be a monster in my child’s heart. The reason we were there was because I insisted he come since he seemed so unable to even do the simplest things to care for himself.

    My son is highly intelligent and strives for excellence in his studies they are important to him. He has been texting me that he can’t study or finish course work, that he should die, that he should never have been born. I needed to find him help and I am sure it was helpful to him to be able to finally vent to this doctor all the rage he felt about his teen age years and the mistakes I made. All the same it left me feeling like a huge failure as a parent. I love my children and made them my life. They are all adults now and I do look back and think about how things could have been happier.

    I guess my point of writing this is to those of you who are younger and have a chance to accept your children. I suggest that you do everything you can to seek help to do just that. I’m hoping I can regain this young mans trust in me again. That I don’t have to have anything that dreadful “on my head”. I pray for true deep down acceptance that is not just on the surface. This has been difficult. I understand those of you who have felt disbelief, anger, worry, and fear. I am going to try for a new approach and that is one of being happy and positive. This wonderful human is still my child. I love him with my whole being and that will never change.

    Thanks for listening

  24. Tracy March 1, 2015 at 4:25 pm #

    I’ve been reading the comments and already feel a bit better.
    My son just told me 2 days ago that he feels he was meant to be born a girl. To say I was shocked, was an understatement.
    We talked and I listened to how he contemplated suicide when puberty hit, he’s now 19, lives at home and his girlfriend lives with us too.
    I’ve cried buckets! We’ve hugged and I’ve told him I’ll be there every step of the way, but I’m scared for him, scared of what he’s going to go through and I feel a failure as a mum, because he kept this to himself for 14 years.
    He told me first and now his girlfriend knows and wants to be there for him too. My husband doesn’t know yet, but he’s a good man and I hope he can offer support too.
    Where do I start being there for him? What can I do to make this journey easy for him? I love him so dearly and just want to protect him.
    You’ve probably guessed that I had no idea about his feelings, so I’m feeling a bit of a failure as a mother right now.
    I’m so scared that he won’t be able to cope with losing friends, family etc, that he does something to himself.
    I can’t lose my baby!
    Please, I need advice.
    Thank you in advance x

    • Sarah March 2, 2015 at 4:08 pm #

      Tracy… You are not a failure of a mother and your son obviously doesn’t believe that either or he wouldn’t have confided in you first. Offer to be there when he comes out to his father and others. Drive him to medical appointments. Read some of the books available on transitioning. Ask meaningful questions about how he is feeling.

      Hopefully he won’t lose family or friends. If someone does abandon him, they weren’t really his friend in the first place. Find a support group so he can talk to people who are in a similar circumstance, and find one for you and your husband too.

      • Tracy March 3, 2015 at 9:17 am #

        Thank you.
        My husband, his step dad now knows too. He is a wonderful man and is supporting my son 100%. As he says, he was his child from 3 years old and loves him unconditionally. He still has his biological dad to tell and step mum, which he is dreading.

        I just want to scoop him up and protect him through this whole journey, but I know I can’t. But I will always be there and as you say, I will go to appointments, meetings etc with him and will be there all the way. I actually got my first rush of excitement for him yesterday when I picked him up. We talked and talked and hugged and talked some more, it was great. I feel like I want to spend every minute with him.

        i have a concern, as does my son about telling his brother, who is eight years his junior. He wants to tell him his self, the same way he did with his step dad. Can anyone offer any advice on the easiest way for an 11 year old to fully understand and be accepting of this news. I am so scared of them drifting apart.

        Thank you for any advice you can offer x

      • Sarah March 6, 2015 at 3:55 pm #

        Again, I am new to this, but my sister wanted to get advice from a professional on how to tell her 12 year old daughter that her cousin was going to become a woman. The professional said not to make such a big deal out of it with a child because they are typically less analytical and judgmental than adults. My niece took the news well. Her attitude was basically that it would be kinda weird seeing her male cousin as a girl, but.. whatever! 🙂

      • Tracy March 23, 2015 at 8:46 am #

        Thanks Sarah.
        Glad it went well x

    • transmom March 3, 2015 at 4:34 am #

      Hi Tracy,
      Stacy is right! Keep hanging in there and seeking support! You are a loving, generous mom!!

      • Tracy March 3, 2015 at 9:17 am #

        I will, thank you x

  25. Scaredmum March 1, 2015 at 5:24 pm #

    I’ve been reading the comments and already feel a bit better.
    My son just told me 2 days ago that he feels he was meant to be born a girl. To say I was shocked, was an understatement.
    We talked and I listened to how he contemplated suicide when puberty hit, he’s now 19, lives at home and his girlfriend lives with us too.
    I’ve cried buckets! We’ve hugged and I’ve told him I’ll be there every step of the way, but I’m scared for him, scared of what he’s going to go through and I feel a failure as a mum, because he kept this to himself for 14 years.
    He told me first and now his girlfriend knows and wants to be there for him too.
    Where do I start being there for him? What can I do to make this journey easy for him? I love him so dearly and just want to protect him.
    You’ve probably guessed that I had no idea about his feelings, so I’m feeling a bit of a failure as a mother right now.
    I’m so scared that he won’t be able to cope with losing friends, family etc, scared for his safety, scared that he does something to himself.
    I can’t lose my baby!

    • transmom March 2, 2015 at 2:30 am #

      Your are not the first nor the last on this journey, “Scaredmum”!! You have done all the RIGHT things so far! Your reaction is so common to what so many of us mothers experience that I decided to write a bit on the topic- Thanks for the inspiration!! Keep loving your son and reaching out!! Hugs to you!!

      • Scaredmum March 2, 2015 at 7:44 am #

        Thank you.
        His step dad now knows too (he told him) and is amazing. He has told him that his love is unconditional, regardless of gender. I’m feeling so much better now that I have his support. I might have even gone 3 hours without crying!🙂
        We all talked last night and I know it’s gonna be a bit of a bumpy ride, but we will all get through this and I hope that I will have a happy, contented child that can look in the mirror and smile.
        That is all I want.

        Thank you for your words.

  26. kmphillips March 23, 2015 at 7:13 pm #

    My son is 24 and he told me he is Transgender, his dad and I are divorced and my son hasn’t told his dad about him being Transgender yet ,its will be a year in may since I have found out and my son keeps telling me he will tell his dad but hasn’t yet , in your opinion should I tell his dad ? I don’t want to jeopardize my relationship with my son but I feel like his dad should know. My son does not look like a girl in front of his dad , and has moved to NY

    • transmom March 24, 2015 at 7:49 pm #

      Hi kmphillips! Isn’t it difficult being a parent of a child at any age?! As moms, we are often able to see the bigger picture and “know” what a better choice might be! However, this is your son’s (daughter) decision! If he/she wishes to remain “stealth” to one or more people, then that is their choice!I I completely understand why you would believe it would be important to share such news with the other parent, but your child must have IMPORTANT reasons to conceal this identity! Your child is an adult and they get to make adult decisions – as well as mistakes! We moms, just remain close by to catch them when they fall!

    • Sarah April 9, 2015 at 4:25 pm #

      Hi Cheri
      I can only speak from my own family’s situation. My son has been coming out to different people before and during transition. Some may not be until later. This is his situation and it needs to unfold within the timeline of the person in transition. There were a few people whom I thought should know sooner rather than later, so I asked my son if I could let them know. This took some of the burden off him. But I wouldn’t tell anyone with his permission.

  27. Cheri April 8, 2015 at 2:42 am #

    Just learning that my 24 year old son is transgender. He’s been dropping hints to me for about a month now. Still pretty confused..I have a lot to learn..I just want him to be happy

    • transmom April 9, 2015 at 4:21 pm #

      This WILL be a confusing time, Cheri! For me, it made me worry not only about how happy he would be, but how my relationship would change! Like all good moms you may be consumed with thoughts/worries about him! Please take good care of yourself during this new process! Is there a support group in your area? Hugs!

  28. Wornout April 19, 2015 at 5:15 pm #

    I don’t know where to begin with my son. We’ve known for a while he was bi gender/bi sexual or that’s what he told us. He is so difficult to deal with right now. We are older parents and since the loss of our eldest child a daughter who was born severely disabled it has been a complete nightmare for 3 and 1/2 years. He dropped out of Uni, keeps spending, over eating can’t get a job and we just feel exhausted. We don’t feel we have had chance to really grief for her.

    He shared a room with a transgender MTF at Uni and it all seems to have started from there yet he no longer has contact with them, or anyone from Uni or school. A few weeks ago he told us he wanted to be a woman, so we are still in shock but trying to be supportive and he went to see the Doctor last week (this is the first stage in UK for a referral to a Gender Counselor). He’s been offered Counselling before at Uni but refused to go and was treated for Depression but didn’t take the anti-depressants.

    The think is we both feel when he says “you don’t know what it’s like to be in a body you don’t like” it makes us feel angry because of our daughter who always made the best of everything despite having a body she could do nothing with, not walk, talk, sit up. He says he can’t keep a job because it means wearing formal male clothing, so I suggested gradual steps of changing clothing towards being more female. I think I’m just trying to hard to help and it isn’t working, it’s having the opposite effect.

    What we really find difficult to deal with is the militancy behind it all and he’s heavily involved with the LGBT community online, so if we use the wrong word or gender we are being “disrespectful” For the last year he wanted to be a “them” or a “they” now apparently not.

    He disappeared in the night a few days ago, after a row over a pink frilly dress that didn’t fit and suggesting small steps. I got upset and burst into tears. We know he is at a friends in another city and is ok at the present. It’s just what do we do for the future I’m so scared for him and his state of mind. He does have an appointment with the Gender Counselor for a couple of weeks time, that’s if he comes back to see them. His main reason for wanting to be a woman seems to be that he doesn’t like men and has said so, he isn’t attracted sexually to men either, only women. It’s all so confusing and we just feel we can’t cope.

    I can’t bear the thought of anything bad happening to him and feel a complete failure and desperate. But I coming to the conclusion only he can help himself and take the help on offer and as he is an adult I can’t do that for him.

    • transmom April 20, 2015 at 3:20 am #

      I am so sorry to hear of your fear and frustration, “Wornout”!! You are literally WORN OUT for good reason! I believe you are correct in your conclusion that only your child can help himself…but with that said, I am thinking you will feel MUCH better as a result of continuing to reach out to- however, with healthy boundaries in place. Letting your adult child know that you are most willing to talk with them, listen to their concerns as they go forward, become educated about the transition process – both the legal process in the UK as well as the emotional toll. In addition, while you are willing to do all of this, you expect to be treated with respect and given some understanding that this is a difficult time for you ALL AROUND!! Good luck to you- keep reaching out!

  29. Heartbroken and Scared April 23, 2015 at 5:53 pm #

    My son (age 26) has been all boy his whole life. He has been struggling with social skills, friendship and forming relationships with non-crazy girls for years. He is high function Asperger, so that accounts for the social skills issues. He has also battled anxiety and panic for years.

    As if all of that wasn’t enough of a challenge, he kept picking the most messed up girls to date…I mean seriously not stable (not just girls I wouldn’t choose — a couple were in and out of psychiatric hospitals), so he kept getting hurt, Last year, he met a girl who is worse than the normal ones (they went on a trip to Disney and she had a complete freak out, locked him out of the room, called him all kinds of awful names, etc.) But now this messed up young lady has introduced him to her Trans friends and as of last week, he announced he is really trans and is starting hormones in June. He made this decision a few months ago, and says it will solve all of his problems. He still likes girls, and does not plan to ever get the surgery. He has not spent any length of time dressed as a girl, save “a couple of times out to dinner with my friends.” He admitted he is even terrified of using a ladies’ room.

    Thanks to these new “friends”, he found a trans doctor who is willing to rubber stamp the whole thing, without any real counseling, any addressing my son’s other psycho-social issues, any medical testing. My son just started a new, very well-paid job a few months ago, bought a new car and has a great new apartment.

    I am devastated. I fear that he will lose everything he just got (the great job, etc.), and that he will be forever limited to women who are okay with someone who is partially male and partially female. I cannot imagine that is a large pool. especially in rural middle America.

    He is furious that I am not okay with this, or my request that he spend some time with an unbiased doctor in counseling. He outright rejected my request that he try spending some time dressed as a female (at least several months) before jumping into hormones — he called that idea “punitive.”

    If he had shown signs all along (any!) or had a stable life happening, I would be there for him. But this seems self=destructive, and that I cannot support. He will lose his father and his father’s entire side of the family. My extended family will be lost to him as well. My daughters (his younger sisters) are so angry they don’t know what to say. And my youngest breaks out in hives whenever he is mentioned now.

    So what do you do when you know it’s all wrong and will probably destroy his life? He is in another state, does not want me to visit and will not talk to me on the phone unless I agree to accept everything 100% right now. Help!

    • transmom April 27, 2015 at 7:36 pm #

      Dear Heartbroken and Scared,
      So sorry I have not replied sooner-I’ve been out of town.
      I can feel your anguish and worry through your note- yours is, indeed, a very complicated and difficult situation!! Here are a couple of thoughts that come to mind as I read your note:
      -“My son has been all boy all his life”. Many transgender children identify outwardly in ways that seem to “confirm” their gender that was assigned at birth. However, this doesn’t mean that they do not feel confused or conflicted internally. How a person identifies is really strictly personal and most times, very intimate. So many children feel FORCED to behave in certain ways under societal expectations.
      -Your son has Asperger’s: You are right- this complicates matters for him! As a special education teacher of 34 years, I have experienced many high-functioning folks that are rule-followers to the extreme! Is it at all possible that your son was attempting to do just that as he was growing up? Trying to follow exactly what was expected of him? Perhaps he MAY be following the ways in which his peers are expecting him to follow? Unfortunately, you do not have control or knowledge of this!
      -He will not seek counseling: Having an adult child is SOOO difficult! As moms of adult children- even when we feel they are not emotionally nor psychologically capable of making such significant decisions- WE often cannot impact their decisions. We can plead, beg, and harp all we like, but at the end of the day, it is our child’s choice!
      -Losing the support of family: This is out of your control!! You will make yourself crazy by worrying about things you cannot change- those things that are beyond your influence. Instead, I recommend writing down what you CAN do:
      *You can leave your son a voice message that reminds him that you love him and that you worry for him because this is a significant change in his life.
      *You can write him a letter that outlines the things you worry about for him (losing his job, losing support of your family, etc) and how you hope that he will be thoughtful going forward.
      *Try listing (be succinct!) things that he “COULD CONSIDER”…he is an adult, and doesn’t want to be told what to do or how to do it.
      *Try to be gentle.
      *Let him know-above all else- that you will continue loving him regardless of his decisions!

      • Wornout May 4, 2015 at 9:03 pm #

        In the UK you cannot take or access “hormones” through the National Health Service without specialist Counselling.

        There are considerable medical risks of taking “hormones” not via medical supervision of any kind. Purchasing any drugs on the internet is not really a sensible option for anyone to take.

        I share your concerns heartbroken & scared, I do think peer pressure in some circumstances and not feeling they “fit in socially” can be a massive factor of influence.

        It’s all very well to say it’s an adult decision but if someone is mentally unstable for other reasons it can be very worrying indeed.

  30. Wornout May 4, 2015 at 8:07 pm #

    Dear Transmom

    Thank you so much for your reply. Unfortunately since then, it’s got much worse, Dad has been in hospital, texted to tell them again no response, then Grandmother is in hospital. Feelling really low.

    So messaged “friend” as was concerned he/she was ok and really got so much abuse it is completely unprintable here😦

    A lot of the issues that we have had over the past few years haven’t really been to do with Gender as we feel we have accepted what we were told and tried to be supportive. It has been about their complete unwillingness to accept responsibility for their own actions and basically a lot of “teenage” type behavior, complete lack of maturity and nothing ever being their responsibility. We know he has been complaining, moaning continually about us to this “friend” but not a lot we can do is there really?

    You are right it is about respect and until they realize this and their very young parent-less “friend” we can do nothing do until they want the “reaching out”.

    I do have a close friend who has a MTF transitioning, but she cannot identify with our son at all, because her MTF child has always been very considerate of her feelings and the rest of the family. My child when I told him this friend had cried for 3 months over baby/childhood photos his reaction was “I hope *insert name” didn’t know about it!!” Well they did know about it and understood.

    I can’t bear the thought of never seeing him/she again, but I’m also realizing my husband and I may not have much time left and we have to live our own lives, be there if we can but we can’t make ourselves ill over it.

    • transmom May 5, 2015 at 4:26 pm #

      Wornout- I am so sorry this continues to be difficult- even MORE stressful since the last time you wrote. You have SEVERAL issues you are trying hard to deal with!! You are correct: you have your own lives and you have to prioritize on what that life is- occasionally reaching out to say you love your child, and living day-to-day without him! Yours is EXTRA challenging and you can only try to do your best- take care of those in your immediate care. Perhaps a journal to keep your many emotions during this time might help? Finding a “sacred” time of day to decompress- if even for a few precious moments? I hope you will try to remember that it is because you are blessed enough to have relationships and love in your life that you DO feel the pain! Strength and blessing to you!!

  31. Nancy Ford May 19, 2015 at 11:54 am #

    Hi, so glad to have found this blog. We took a family vacation last week to see my oldest son. He is 26 and lives in a different city. My mother, husband, and my 23 year old son took the journey. While we were there my oldest told us he is transgender. He said he started to feel confused around 14. I knew he had a terrible year last year and I was not sure why. He started weekly therapy in Feb. and that is helping.
    The first thing we assured him was that we love him no matter what, and he can always count on us.

    He has a girlfriend (partner ?) who is gay and they seem to get along great. She supports him 100% and we think she is delightful and we are glad she is there for him. She will be explaining the situation to her parents this week and they are going on vacation with her parents in June. I am praying they are understanding.

    For now he still wants to use the words “He”. He had an Endocrinologist appt this week. He hopes to freeze some sperm and she is investigating costs. Wondering if others have done that ? He would need to do it before starting hormones.

    We are spinning and want to help, and to protect him. At the same time we are feeling a lot of grief for the years he suffered. We wish he had told us sooner, but he said he had to understand it first. We are also working through the grief of losing the young man we have always known, and feel so helpless so far away.

    • transmom May 25, 2015 at 4:10 am #

      Hi Nancy!
      You are a FABULOUS mom and I appreciate your sharing your story!! You are in touch with the pain that this struggle brings: your own pain through your loss, the pain you now realize your son has already experienced, and the pain you worry may still befall him! It is a special kind of challenge to reel with these feelings while not being able to actually “DO” so little…your child is an adult and you are, in essence, “along for the ride”. I felt that same helplessness when our son disclosed his being transgender while living in a different state! I encourage you to keep the lines of communication open with him. I do caution you, however, to watch the number of opinions you offer (this is something that I think ALL parents of adult children wrestle with – we have experienced years of helping them make decisions and now we are completely out of that position!! In addition, if you are anything like I am, you may need on resisting the urge to contact him more frequently than is typical. I think it’s best if you retain the same level of communication with making sure when you do speak to him, that you are sure to say you would love to talk to him ANYTIME about ANYTHING. He needs to know that you trust him!!
      I think the freezing of his sperm is a fabulous idea!! I have known other MTF’s that have done so before transitioning! Families come in all different forms- wouldn’t it be wonderful if he was able to have his own biological child one day with the woman that he loves?!! Incredible!!
      Hang in there and please keep me posted as you experience along your new journey. Embrace it!!

      • Nancy Ford October 1, 2015 at 6:25 pm #

        Hi, long time since I’ve written. My son finally got his answers the other day on the Freezing Sperm issue. FYI – it will be about 675.00 initially and then about 375.00 per year. He has been waiting on that so has not started hormones.
        He and i talk several times a week and we always have- sometimes we talk about transition but usually just catching up..
        Anyway – I sent him a letter this Summer and told him that I feel like I’m having a new baby, and that after I raised 2 boys in mid-life I will have the surprise gift of being a mother to a daughter. That I know a lot of things about this new person (basically the same personality traits) but I wonder what she’ll want for Christmas, will she wear jewelry – sandals – perfume, what will her style be etc.
        So – we are adjusting.
        My husband is having a bit of a harder time than I am. He is still very supportive- but very nervous about telling his brothers, and their families, and his mother. I know he is feeling a little like maybe he didn’t do enough “manly” things with him. I have assured him that he was a great father and none of us “caused” this to happen
        My younger son says you just say “did you love him 5 minutes before we told you, he’s still the same person ” We have not told any other family members at this point.
        My oldest has come out to all of his friends and colleagues and they were wonderful about it. He and some of his friends rode in the gay pride parade and he wore a dress, earrings and make up. He sent me a cute picture.
        So for now we are in a holding pattern. Which has given us some time for reflection and we are grateful

      • transmom October 4, 2015 at 9:37 pm #

        So great to hear from you, Nancy!! You are a wonderful loving mom and your husband is coming along in his journey just great- this is hard for him and that’s okay!! I’m glad to know he is working on it and hasn’t just become angry about it! You can find our “Disclosure Letter” on this site’s archives…it was a really positive experience for us- scary initially- but we received so many loving responses and it helped us all go to that next level of acceptance and calm! The best to your family!!

    • djdinca June 1, 2015 at 2:51 am #

      Nancy, my name is Dina Oskiera, and I am a supporting parent as well. Regarding sperm storage in a cryobank, the answer is “yes” storage should be completed before hormones begin. I imagine different companies charge different rates, but for comparative purposes, I can share my daughter’s storage cost is $40 a month.

      I have been supporting my daughter’s transition since 2008, and am a founding member of the Transfamily Support Group of Santa Cruz County in California. The grief you are experiencing is understandable. There is great loss, but I hope in the days ahead you will find a way to accept that the loss you feel is the loss of a parent’s expectations regarding a child’s future and, as you shared, for opportunities missed in the past. There are also certain feelings that come with the realization that a child may have suffered despite being under a parent’s dedicated watch. Grief, anger, guilt, fear, betrayal, overwhelm, sadness…these and other emotions can all be part of the supporting parent’s experience. But a positive and supported transition can also bring great feelings of joy for both parent and child, as well as, a deepening of the parent-child bond. There is loss, and there is gain in this experience.

      My child’s transition was an inspiration for me to look at the authenticity of my own life. We are both changing all the time. I am so proud of her for being willing to speak out at 17 to clarify who she is and wants to be acknowledged as despite the understandable mistake made by every authority in her life including parents, doctors, teachers etc. because of anatomy. Early on, my daughter’s specializing therapist clearly indicated this is my daughter’s journey. The parent role is one of support. That being said, in most cases supporting parents do indeed need separate, formal support of their own. Connection with an experienced and knowledgeable therapist along with reaching out to other supporting parents can make all the difference in helping parents process feelings and find the information and knowledge needed for changes ahead. If you cannot locate a transgender family support group in your area, feel free to connect with me in this thread on this blog or by calling the Transfamily Support Group of Santa Cruz County. They can put you in touch with me or other parents supporting the MTF experience.

      • transmom June 2, 2015 at 4:15 am #

        Hi Dina- Thank you for such a well-written response to Nancy and all of our other readers here!! I appreciate your sharing your story and your willingness to reach out in such a generous manner! Having other mothers to share our experiences with is important support that may be difficult for many to find as they begin to navigate this journey with their Journey!

  32. Cynthia Dickey July 18, 2015 at 2:47 pm #

    Oh my gosh thank you so much for this site. I have not yet even read any of it (will probably spend most of today doing so) but it is already a Godsend. My son just came out to me a week ago as transgender (MTF) and I am the only one in our family who knows so far and I am going CRAZY. He (actually SHE) is 23, has been going to a therapist for over a year and taking hormones for over a year and plans on transitioning completely over the next year, ultimately getting the SRS in the end. I have been completely supportive to her, embracing her from the getgo because I just want her to feel loved, accepted and HAPPY…we have become close in a way we NEVER were…I have been helping her with clothes and makeup, purchasing things for her she has not felt comfortable purchasing for herself yet…talking about grooming, how to walk, sit, talk…etc etc…She is becoming the daughter I always wanted and never thought I’d have…but when I am alone…I am CONSUMED by worry for her, for our family (my husband especially) and just feeling very very alone…at times I mourne the loss of my little boy…I cant sleep…it’s the last think I obsess over when I lay down my head and the first thing when I wake up…and it’s just ME…no one else knows and I don’t want to share some of my process with her because I don’t want to burden her with that. I know part of me is still somewhat in shock, stages of grief, and that it will get better…but having all of this in me…watching my whole family go through their carefree lives and knowing the TIME BOMB that is fixing to go off in our family…in our lives and the MAJOR paradigm shift our entire lives are fixing to go through…and not being able to tell them until she is ready to share this with them…is KILLING ME. So THANK YOU for being here!

    • transmom July 20, 2015 at 3:36 am #

      Hi Cynthia! I am SOOO happy that this site has given you some relief and connection!!

      I so “get” the anquish and fear you are experiencing- the constant ruminating from day’s beginning to day’s end!! It is soooo difficult to be a loving mom, isn’t it??!!

      There were so many times when I thought to myself, “Ummm, where was I when I signed up for this?!!” (Knowing me, probably talking and not listening or paying attention to the signs when God was handing out assignments!!) Seriously, it doesn’t really matter if there WERE signs or not- here you are and you are FABULOUS!! You are to be commended!! You are giving so generously of your spirit so your daughter may soar while all the while, YOU are being worried and stressed. Cynthia, I know you are anticipating the worst (we all would do that!), but maybe the time bomb won’t be as worrisome as you fear?? In some ways, I appreciate your anticipating “the worst case scenario”- after all, if it is anything short of that outcome, you’ve got it covered, right? However, maybe there are some positives that you can put into motion:
      -How about setting out to write a list of all of the things you’ve found or have done that have been helpful? Having those at the ready will give other family members the support that you didn’t have immediate access to!
      -Consider a “plan of action”…I’m picturing a kind of intervention- but for everyone else🙂 That way, your daughter has control of whom is there, how it is rolled out, where, etc. In this way, you can maximize the positives. What do you think?
      Meanwhile, hugs to you, awesome mom!!

      • Cynthia dickey July 21, 2015 at 4:28 pm #

        Thank you so much for your encouraging words…they mean so much to me. And I will definitely follow your advise, finding information that has been helpful and comforting to me and printing it out to have on hand as my daughter shares her story with other family members❤

    • Sarah July 20, 2015 at 4:14 pm #

      Hi Cynthia

      I am really glad that you found this site — it has been a Godsend for me!

      Your family is lucky to have you! Early this year, my 29 year old MTF daughter came out to me first as well. I totally get the mix of emotions you are going through and having to keep it all inside. I think you are right to not burden your daughter with ALL of your emotions, but sharing your concerns for her safety and well-being would be good for both of you.

      Like you, I mourned the loss of my little boy — until I realized that the face in all of those old photos is the same person who is now a young woman. I feel strongly that I will keep the little boy photos up and that it is okay to refer to that little boy by his boy name. What is working for our family is to start using the female name and pronouns from this point forward, and to use the male name and pronouns for in the past. We have all come to the realization that the person is one in the same and that we don’t need to rewrite the past.

      My daughter has now come out to everyone, including work. So far she is feeling like she “cheated the system” by getting a support rate of 100%. It probably helps that she lives in the Seattle area where different lifestyles are commonplace.

      Take care of yourself through this process and just take it one day at a time. BIG HUG TO YOU.

      • transmom July 26, 2015 at 3:53 am #

        Sarah, I love that you have found support here!! And I am thrilled for your daughter: being able to successfully come out with 100% support is HUGE!!! I have chills knowing there are families and friends out there that are willing to stand up for the trans folks in their lives!!

        The family photos are an interesting aspect for many to deal with: for many transgender individuals, seeing the photos of themselves prior to transitioning can be very painful; those can bring up painful memories that these individuals would prefer not to be reminded! For others, like my son, photos under a certain age feel comfortable to view, and those continue to remain on display in our home. I’ve known several moms of transkids that have only one “old” photo on display in the privacy of their bedrooms- and having to rid their family home of all the photographs and evidence of their child’s earlier identity was extremely painful. Yet, these moms were willing to do this because they wanted their child to feel comfortable living at or coming home. I’m happy for you that your daughter feels comfortable with those earlier memories!

        I struggled with the use of the new male pronouns for a long time and felt badly whenever I made an error (even with my son living out of state, I felt like I had somehow violated him!!). I, too, started recalling the young “she”- but realized that after a time, I now refer to my son no matter what stage of life, as “he”. I’m not sure when that happened.

        It will be interesting to see how YOU experience your daughter’s transition- the changes that YOU make as her mom! Please keep us posted!!

  33. Kiki July 19, 2015 at 6:34 am #

    How do I help my trans son to find love.
    Please help.

    • transmom July 20, 2015 at 4:46 am #

      Kiki- the love will begin with you! Your acceptance of your son will give him strength to make these difficult changes. When he feels whole, then he will have the ability to share completely with others. He will find and make those relationships himself…we can only encourage and be supportive. Keep loving your son, Kiki!!

  34. Beth July 20, 2015 at 8:26 pm #

    I am so grateful to have stumbled upon this site. My son (M) came out to me when he was 13. He then went back and forth around his identity, sometimes telling me he was trans, sometimes bi, and sometimes straight. It was tough for all of us.

    A couple of years ago, one of his high school girlfriends encouraged him to be true to who he was, and bought him makeup for his birthday. She and another girlfriend hunted down skirts for him. I didn’t know about all this until his 19th birthday. About a week before he turned 19, he asked me if I would make him a purse (I sew all my own). We picked out fabric together, and I gave him the purse in the privacy of his own room. Neither of us wanted the rest of the family to know yet, for various reasons.

    Two months ago my son met a gal going through her MTF transition.She provided a wealth of information and support that my son hadn’t yet found. Yesterday I had lunch with my son/daughter’s friends. It was the first time I had seen (M) dressed completely as (E). Her makeup was tastefully done and the skirt looked beautiful on her. It was probably the most uncomfortable lunch I’ve had in a long time, but the fact that (E) wanted me to know her friends was really special. Seeing (E) happy and beautiful eased my mother’s heart a bit, too.

    A couple of hours ago (M) called me. He had made an appointment to see a doctor about HRT. He wanted me to go to the appointment, too. In a way, I will be there for the birth of (E). To say my emotions are all over the place would be an understatement.

    Thank you for this site, the encouragement and support everyone shows, and the place to express fears and worries. I’ve shed many tears today, some of them in gratitude towards all of you here. I’ll be back often.

    • transmom July 26, 2015 at 3:32 am #

      Wow, Beth! What an incredible story of your journey with your (new) daughter! While so difficult for you, you have been SO SUPPORTIVE and INCREDIBLY LOVING!! I applaud you for allowing this to be about your child and NOT about you! You are a role model for all of us parents here no matter what stage we find ourselves in this journey!! What I love about your story is that you acknowledge how very difficult this is- about your tears and struggle!! You are not denying these very real emotions, yet you are coping the best way you can because you know this is your child’s choice and her happiness is at stake. Thank you for sharing your story!!!

  35. robynlynnwriter July 28, 2015 at 8:53 pm #

    Hello – I am new to this – sort of.

    Yesterday my 23 year old son Donovan (?) told me s/he was going to take steps to become the girl s/he always felt s/he has been. I have known about this since s/he was small, but I guess I thought he would “grow out of it”. It is much harder to walk the talk than I ever imagined. I am grieving deeply but I don’t even know why. I am having a hard time with every single aspect of this – except loving him/her through it. I feel very very alone.Thankfully D lives with their (?) sister and she is an incredible strong person who loves and protects D fiercely, but in the process she has also revealed a more “gender neutral” (?) orientation.

    I am so lost as a parent who struggled to raise strong independent children – what do we do when they become exactly who you told them they could become?

    I am of course worried about D – but honestly, not any more now than I always have. What I don’t understand is how broken I feel….and it is funny, I am a writer and the thing that reflects my brokenness seems to be my complete inability to adapt to word changes! I feel like being asked to use “gender neutral” words my connection to my children is slipping. I know that makes no sense, but I don’t know how to talk about the three of us anymore….

    If anyone has resources in the Seattle area, I’d appreciate info.

    • transmom July 31, 2015 at 6:12 am #

      Hi Robynlynn! I completely feel for your current struggle! My experience was similar in that I also felt so much grief without being able to pinpoint why when I was simultaneously supportive. I felt at odds with myself! And quite honestly, the gender neutral pronouns baffles me as does gender-fluid identity. Some of my son’s friends identify as such and it feels like it would be confusing -not only to those of us cis-gendered folks, but to those that are “fluid” themselves.

      I live in LA so at present can’t help with Seattke contacts. Have you tried contacting:

      Good luck to you! Reaching out and finding support is critical for you right now! You are on the right path!

    • Sarah August 1, 2015 at 2:10 am #

      Hi Robynlynn

      I am in the Seattle area as well and found great comfort with a couple of hour-long phone calls with a gentleman named Aiden Key. Aiden is the Director of an organization called Gender Diversity. They have all sorts of support groups, and they hold a big conference each year called “Gender Odyssey”.

      My husband and I attended one parent session and found it to be very helpful. Every parent/couple there started out with a potpourri of emotions. Those with close ties to their kids seemed to have their emotions on a more even keel faster than the parents who had strained or no relationship with their kid.

      As a mom who has only been living with our situation since the beginning of the year, I can honestly say that once I got through my own issues with thinking about what other people would think, overly worrying about my daughter, etc., my daughter becoming herself has been a great journey for our whole family. Scariest day (other than Day 1)… going shopping with her at the mall for a dress to wear to her sister’s wedding. I chose Mother’s Day to do this and we ended up having a blast! BTW… She looked so pretty dancing in that dress at the wedding last week!

      These kids are so incredibly courageous to be coming out and starting a new chapter in each of their lives.

      I also had a mom from this blog email me directly — that was HUGE for me.

      If transmom would be willing, she can send my email address to you. Perhaps we could meet up and go to Aiden’s next meeting together?

  36. Jennifer July 31, 2015 at 8:06 am #

    I told my mother if she doesn’t expect my brother/sister then her closed minded way will make me turn away from her and so will my twin sister we love are sibling no matter what I need to see my brother one more time to let him go and full except her new life but what ever u chose in this short life we live chose to be happy and safe

    • transmom August 11, 2015 at 5:40 am #

      Jennifer- I hope you will consider allowing your mother to have her own time to deal with this change in your family! Everyone should be allowed to have their own process I believe. I think it can be so different for siblings! I watched my daughter so very easily accept her brother as he transitioned! She didn’t have the same worries or hopes of dreams that I had for him as his mother. Please encourage your mom to seek support. Maybe she would like reading here?

  37. Peg Crerar August 11, 2015 at 9:27 pm #

    Thank you! Here I start our journey!

    • transmom August 12, 2015 at 5:04 am #

      Keep us posted, Peg! Hang in there!

  38. Antoinette August 13, 2015 at 11:31 am #

    My 15 year old revealed to me she wants to be a boy. And cries often about how she hates being a girl and feels its not her body. She has been alienated from long time friends Depressed anxiety and I have put her in support groups she has a psychiatrist she has been admitted into the hospital and outpatient for coping skills that she will not self harm herself. We love our child so much… Trying to place every thing in full circle to keep her healthy and stil i worry for my child worried I need somebody to help me process this im becoming unglued with anxiety worried all the time!

    • transmom August 14, 2015 at 1:45 am #

      I’m soooo sorry to hear your fear and anxiety, Antoinette!! I can’t imagine going through that!! It sounds as if you are doing all that you can- making sure she has mental health care. Are you in an area in which she can meet others like herself- and that you can attend family support groups together? The one here in LA is such a fabulous example of support- I hope you can find something like that!!

  39. Lauren Castle August 14, 2015 at 7:19 pm #

    Hi there, I am with someone who is going through ftm and would just like to ask for more information on how you have and are dealing with the transition as a mother because my partners mum is going through a hard time trying to deal with it. Could you give me advice to give her please?

    • transmom September 1, 2015 at 7:30 pm #

      Hi Lauren! It is generous of you to reach out to your partner’s mum! As a mom, I would appreciate that!! Honestly, I would even appreciate it MORE if my child were ALSO reaching out alongside you! One thing that really helped me was hearing from my son that I “would have my own process and time.” no one was expecting me to feel any certain way overnight. I would encourage her to seek out a support group- or even write to me here online: SHE IS NOT ALONE!!! Thanks for reaching out, Lauren!!

      • Lauren Castle September 2, 2015 at 9:00 pm #

        Thank you for replying back.

        My partner is also reaching out to his mum as well but it just seems his mum does not want to hear it… his mum said to me that it’s like excepting that her daughter is dead and needing time to get over that. What do we say to that? I want to try and get his mum to see that the person she brought up is still here. I will pass your email address on to her so she can talk to you if she wants to.

        thank you again x

      • transmom September 3, 2015 at 3:38 am #

        I am happy to talk to her- one mum to another🙂 None of us can argue with her feelings- they belong to her!! They are real!! However, we can ask her to consider her love and devotion to her child and let her know she can experience the loss AND love simultaneously!! Please have her check out this site and write!! Lots of moms can respond!!

  40. Bridget Markk August 17, 2015 at 11:41 pm #

    I hope this site can help me. My 18 yr. old son shared his feelings with me & he wants 2 transition 2 a female. I love him & will be supportive, but we have a large family & this will not be accepted well. I’m worried sick 4 him, and the eventual impact on the family.

    • transmom September 1, 2015 at 11:29 pm #

      I understand your concern and anguish for your child, Bridget!! This absolutely will impact the family and there MAY be some divide as to how accepting some folks are compared to others. That is, frankly, just how it goes with families: whether it is for trans folks, if someone comes out as gay, if there is intermarriage, etc- there seems to always be some family members that disagree or who want to find negativity. With that said, YOU are the one that is MOST important to your MTF son!! And your family members can take their cues from you! If you have boundaries around your expectations for how your child is to be treated, he will feel safe. It means having your immediate family (if you are with his dad/siblings) on the same page. Ask your son/daughter how and when he/she wants this news to be shared…will he/she share the news personally? Will you? Will you disclose it in person or via letter or phone call? When you have a plan, you both will feel more ready to take on the unexpected. I really do recommend that you feel ready and prepared to answer questions- both you are your son/daughter need to be on the same page with how to respond if someone if discounting or rude. Folks need to hear that they are absolutely free to have an opinion, but that doesn’t mean that any negativity will be tolerated and it doesn’t mean anyone will be attempting to change his/her mind. Does this make sense? Folks need parameters and boundaries…this is a very serious and personal decision and you will be modeling the respect of hyour child’s decision! It IS a great idea to share that you know this MAY be difficult to hear or understand, but you firmly believe and support your child, no matter that this is challenging or difficult for you as the mom! Stay the course!! You are doing great!

  41. Julia C Vargas Lara Sr. August 21, 2015 at 7:32 am #

    I Love You Your The Greatest Mom/MOTHER In The World🙂

    • transmom September 1, 2015 at 11:37 pm #

      WOW!!! Thank you Julia!!

  42. Jane August 21, 2015 at 12:44 pm #

    I am clearly a CRAP mum!

    My son and I had a difficult relationship from the time I separated form his dad aged 9
    I formed a new relationship – and went o to have 3 more children.

    We deliberately waited 4 years so he felt hopefully entrenched in our new family and not threatened.

    He later became a stripper and used drugs – he hen decided he would have no more contact with me and his step dad but did want to see his siblings – no idea why at that point!

    Eventually he told us he planned to change sex

    Sorry but I cannot get past this – I gave birth to a boy – he NEVER displayed any aversion to boy type activities – activities – encouraged us to get him motorbike – air rifle etc. absolutely not led by us . .

    I have no issue with boys playing with girl toys or vice versa – when I has a daughter there were only boys toys in the house . . . the first time she saw a pink teddy she wanted one so I bought it . . . her twin brother asked for an ironing board and a dolls pram for Xmas and that is what we bought . . .

    He ( the younger son) used to love dressing up as his twin sister and we went along with this – no issues – he has gone on to a “normal relationship” and probably does not even remember so I M NOT A PRUDE!

    What hurts me most is that my first born son ( who ahs had the ops and everything) tells me that it is my fault and all the signs were there -but they were not!

    Now he says he asked for “action man” because he wanted a doll – so when I got one why did he play at fighting with them?

    Why did he ask for motorbike? I am opposed to them. . .

    Why did he ask for an ait rifle ? we are opposed to guns but supported this request for him?

    Clearly I am not as supportive as most Mums but I find it so hard – I understand it is not his “fault” but neither is it mine .

    never seen him since the op . . cannot face it . . .

    Rubbish MUM

    • transmom September 1, 2015 at 11:54 pm #

      You are NOT a Rubbish MUM!! Your son (daughter now?) is handing you a plate of guilt….and guess what- you don’t have to take what he /she is dishing out! Sure- maybe there was something that EVERY parent has inadvertently done that now, in retrospect, feels unsupportive. That doesn’t mean that their choice to change their gender is the parent’s fault or doing.You are not alone in being a parent that has had to watch their child struggle with drugs and finding themselves in a healthy lifestyle. It can be horrible to not have any impact on the choices they make as adults!! If it is in fact what you desire, let your son/daughter know that there is no going back. You were as thoughtful and mindful as you could at the time. you were the best parent you could be at that time. And now he/she is an adult and you want him to know that you do love him regardless of how they may feel about you. Good luck to you- there is still time to build anew!!

  43. Cora August 23, 2015 at 3:59 pm #

    My baby, Jade, is 14 years old. Born a male yet feels like a girl trapped in a boys body. I support him/her 100%. However, lives with Dad who only allows him/her to be self behind closed doors. He spends alot of time alone. Depressed and has cut in the past. Why cannot Dad love him/her for the beautiful person he/she is. Sure, I am still working thru some things, which I do not let my child see. All I want is for my child to live happy and proud of who they are instead of having to hide the beautiful female he was ment to be.

    • transmom September 2, 2015 at 1:07 am #

      Hi Cora! I, like you, am sad that Jade’s father doesn’t understand how critical it is for her to be herself. Her having cut prior is a signal that when she is feeling desperate, she can resort to desperate means. Do you have open communication with her father? Is it at all possible to offer to take Jade to counseling? would he be open to that? How about reading books on the subject like, “The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals” by Stephanie A. Brill and Rachel Pepper.

  44. Kezza August 24, 2015 at 10:31 pm #

    I am so glad I found this site! My 14 year just came out as FTM. I’m in total support of him and am doing as much research as possible. This site is a huge help.

    • transmom September 2, 2015 at 1:09 am #

      Thanks so much Kezza! It’s not easy being the parent of ANY adolescent- I so appreciate your ADDITIONAL love, concern and support for your son!! YOU ROCK!!

  45. Kelly August 25, 2015 at 3:56 am #

    My 29 year old daughter told me 3 weeks ago she will be transitioning. KNOCK me over… I had NO idea, Yes we knew she was gay, and that she dresses more boyish,, she got a drastic short haircut a few months ago, but never did i see this coming, She is a twin and her twin and I are having a hard time with this. She said she feels gender neutral and doesnt want to be either, BUT that society says she has to so she will begin testosterone and change her name and be identified as male. I cannot erase the last 30 years, I wont put away the family photos, that is NOT fair to me, her mom who gave birth to them 4 months early, who watched them almost die. I can accept this is what she wants, but I dont have to be happy about it,,,,Yes I want her happy, but I have feelings that matter also.

    • transmom September 2, 2015 at 1:24 am #

      You are right, Kelly! You do NOT have to be happy. You have every right to have a difficult time with this news!! And your family pictures are in your home so, ultimately, that is your decision. But here’s something – over time (it’s been 3 years for me!!)- that I have learned: this is not about me. It’s not about you. It’s not about your struggle as a good mom. It’s not about your child’s twin. This is gender and it’s all about what is in your kid’s head and what THEIR truth is. Period. Now, that’s REALLY hard to accept- and some parents never get there. I hope- in time- you will! Because that is what the unconditional love part is, my fellow mama- it’s about putting aside our complete disappointment. It’s about watching our dreams die. It’s about letting go of what we know to be an easier way of life. It’s about having to stand by and watch your beloved say no to choices that you want them to make. BUT- and here’s the good part- loving like this means that your child will continue to LIVE!! They will have a life of their own. They will feel whole inside!! They will continue to trust you and want you to be a part of their life. And when you give them their life again- as you struggled to do all those years ago- then you will see that the pictures may be too painful for them and so you may choose not to have them up if your child asks you to take them down because you want them to once again feel comfort in your home and to not struggle with what they kept a SECRET. God knows what pain something like a picture can rekindle now…we can’t know. But in time, we can trust that the most important thing is that our babies are alive and happy. That baby you struggled to keep alive- they will continue to be- perhaps not with the name or appearance that you expected or want for them, but they will ALWAYS be your child- ALWAYS!!!

  46. Denise August 26, 2015 at 5:17 am #

    I can’t do this. I’m devastated. My son transitioned mtf after going to Betkeley. There was never an indication for 22 years. It came out of nowhere and I’m in a deep grief. The whole family fell apart. My husband of 24 years abandoned my younger son and I. All I can think about is suicide.

    • Denise August 26, 2015 at 5:33 am #

      I feel that Gender is a social construct, a person’s biological sex will never change. Surgery is mutilation. People “perform” gender based on stereotypes. WHY? Let me add that he will not speak to me ever again unless I use his chosen (ridiculous) name and use “she” or “they” as a pronoun.. I feel like my son died and there will never be closure as in a real death.

      • transmom September 2, 2015 at 1:34 am #

        sorry Denise- I have been out of town so I am later in responding than I would like. I understand that you disagree with the surgery and your child’s name/pronoun change. It must be a shock for you. However, adults get to have their own lives- your choosing not to acknowledge his new gender by a new name and pronouns IS your choice- however, your child is an adult and they can choose not to surround themselves with folks that are not supportive. This is the line that your child has drawn: respect me and show me you love and respect me by acknowledging my name and new gender. I know it’s tough- I soooooo get that. You don’t have to agree. You absolutely have a right to your opinions- but, if you desire to continue to have a relayionship with your child, then know you have to make these changes. You can say you will try. You can ask them to understand how hard this is for you. You can say that you are devastated. and you can also say that no matter what, bottom line, you love them!

    • transmom September 2, 2015 at 1:27 am #

      Dear Denise- are you talking about your own suicide or your son’s? You need to find help – there are counselor’s everywhere- please seek some help from someone that can help you process not only this news but the loss of your husband’s relationship with your child. Hope is NOT gone, dear Denise!! Fear does heal and love CAN remain…but it takes work. You love your child so you CAN do this!!! Please let me know how you are doing!!

      • Susan Clarke Haskell September 6, 2015 at 7:15 pm #

        Hi Lisa
        I feel your pain. You have described my experience too. I really tried to support my child, even travelling to Thailand at her request as support during surgery only to be turned upon in a shocking way accusing me of going there only to stop the surgery. I had not EVER thought about that course of action. Why go all that way? It defies logic.
        I too, have been blamed because I had my appendix removed during the pregnancy and that I should have seen signs. I see the comment about respecting their situation. How I wish that the respect went both ways. To have your child reject you when you have tried to support, adjust and accept is terrible. I have tried what transmom has suggested but it failed. There have been terrible posts made on social media calling me a bigot, crazy, etcetera….
        I agree with you,Lisa, that their new behaviour is selfish and inconsiderate of others. It seems to be their way or the highway. My child and I were very close as mother and son so the loss of the relationship has devastated me. It is hard but you are not alone. For the only time in my life I thought my situation hopeless, but I am getting help. At first, I thought my Christian friends would abandon me but most were very caring. Reach out to them and accept counseling as this is one time in your life that there is much confusion. Give yourself time to process this. It is not your fault.
        Pause…know that you are valuable and worthy and loving.

      • transmom September 7, 2015 at 8:56 pm #

        Susan, I am so glad that you are reaching out to Lisa. You both are in difficult relationships with your children as they transition. I want you to know that not all children that are transitioning are inconsiderate or selfish- I’m so sorry to know you are experiencing that. You are seeking out support in your community and that is wonderful. You are reaching other moms here with encouragement…thank you.

  47. Carol young September 7, 2015 at 7:58 am #

    Please help

    • transmom September 7, 2015 at 8:29 pm #

      How can I help, Carol?

  48. Flee September 16, 2015 at 12:18 am #

    I myself recently got news that my 26 yr old son who’s MARRIED with a 4 yr old boy is in the beginning stage of transitioning to a female. I have sooo many questions I have no way to get answers for because he refuses to speak to me about it. He doesn’t want to have the surgery, only take the hormones. You can imagine how hurt his beautiful tall redheaded wife felt when he told her. She cried for days and she’s not one to cry at all. He wants her to stay with him. None of this is making any sense to me. He claims not to want men, he just thinks this is going to cure his depression. Everyone knows it’s not going to do that, if anything it will make it worse when he starts hormone therapy. I want him to be happy and if I thought for a second this would do it I would not question a thing. However my son has NEVER shown any tyoe of tendencies in this direction. Not because I wouldn’t approve, as he knows I’m very liberal and would accept him and love him no matter what. His father has an uncle who is gay and lived most of his life as a female. My son, lets call him B, has never been close to him nor had anything too bad to say. But in the past he hasn’t wanted to be around the uncle or in any way close to him. Someone B works with is going thru it and I honestly think my son is being influenced by this person and his counselor who is a transgender. His wife has begged him to take it slow, which he agreed to at first but now has started to speed everything up. There’s nothing feminine about B. His FAVORITE thing to do is outdoors and most of the time he doesn’t even have on shoes. Now he’s gonna start wearing heels? He also has always hated to see a doc or take meds. Now he’s going to therapy once a week and will soon start on hormones after less than 10 visits. I have so many questions I don’t even know where to start. Is there anywhere I can turn for advice when you truly believe your son is making a HUGE irreversible mistake that could really cause him unnecessary problems when he decides it wasn’t what he wanted afterall?

    • transmom October 4, 2015 at 9:14 pm #

      I wish I could give you some advice for what would help you most, Flee…but this is a very personal journey for your son and his family. Of course, it absolutely will impact you and your relationships with them, but he is an adult…like his wife, you can only counsel him to think carefully and insure he has sound support from medical and psychological professionals!! If he isn’t having surgery, than this is not a choice that he has to make for a lifetime. Hormone therapy, once stopped, will reverse. I know this is hard for you to watch, but he has to make the decisions – whether you see that it is positive or not. Please let us know how you are doing! And in the meantime, please also take time for yourself!

    • journeyahead October 7, 2015 at 4:29 am #

      I’ve found a trans couple who run a site called Transition Radio. They have shows with guest speakers every Tuesday and Thursday on what is going on in the trans community. It has been a refreshing change and perspective to hear the opposite of what is going on right now. They are the first ones to say they are not politically correct and they don’t care. http://www.transitionradio.net/home_page.html

      They verbalize the things that I believe. May you get the comfort from their shows that I have.

      • transmom October 7, 2015 at 12:19 pm #

        Hi Journeyahead! Thanks so much for your reference- I had not heard of Transition Radio before!! I will check it out!!

  49. TheViewFromHere October 3, 2015 at 4:53 pm #

    This post and all of the comments have been so helpful this morning. My (now) son came out to me this past summer. I, like many of you, was very surprised. Although I knew he had been struggling with his sexuality – thinking he was gay in middle school, then pansexual last year, his sophomore year of college. I thought he was just trying to find his way. I guess he is.

    Still, he always has a (wonderful) girlfriend. He is 6’4″, very thin, and handsome. But he feels such gender dysphoria.

    I have looked for support and found it from trusted friends and my mom. I will see my son (for now) today. I’m so glad I have read the comments as I really wanted to plead with him, “Please don’t do it!” But now I think that’s definitely not the way to go. I’m reading that I need to accept, love unconditionally, and acknowledge this is still my beloved child even though the form will be different. Still, my heart aches so much when I consider how difficult life and the world will be for him as he makes a transition, then begins to live life as a 6’4″ trans woman. He is just 20 years old, doing so well in college, on his way to a career in engineering management. People love this kid.

    I wonder, will s/he be able to make a living? Will s/he be accepted in the world? Will s/he be discriminated against? Will s/he hurt herself? Will s/he be able to find and maintain a loving relationship?

    My soon to be ex-husband for all his issues was actually helpful when we spoke about this. He simply said, “He hasn’t been happy.” Only, he always seemed happy, adjusted, amazing. Whaaaaaa! This hurts so much. I can only turn my heart toward my child and know that has to have been hurting him (her) so much for so long for him to make this decision and to have the courage to come out to me, his dad, his sister, friends, and coworkers. No one would choose this – right?

    I appreciate the support here. I’ve been looking for a therapist who can help ME navigate the feelings of great loss so that I can continue to love this beautiful person who I get to call my child. My heart is breaking.

    • transmom October 4, 2015 at 9:48 pm #

      Awww-The viewFromHere- I wish I could reach out and hug you!! This IS a tough time to watch your beloved child struggle- we as moms just wanna keep them from any pain. No, we can’t promise nothing bad is going to happen…but we DO know that for your son-almost daughter- to find any relief and sense of joy, they must live their truth!! They must find a community that supports them and sees them for the person they are!!Nope- I can’t imagine ANYONE choosing such a difficult struggle!! You are doing the right things…lend an ear…ask open-ended questions so you can build dialogue. Seeking support is the best thing you can do for both of you!!!! Keep hanging in there!! Your kid is alive and on their way to find peace!

      • joanne2sons October 6, 2015 at 2:35 am #

        Transmom – I just wanted to thank you again for this wonderful blog. I shared your May 2012 blog – “Fear vs. Reality” at my Gender Support Group meeting last month. Of course, I got a little emotional when reading it, but at the same time I felt stronger and stronger by the time I finished reading it. I’m not a religious person, but some of your posts are like my Bible. I read them over and over and feel like I have someone next to me cheering me on. Thanks again for all your encouragement! You are the greatest!

      • transmom October 6, 2015 at 11:35 pm #

        Wow joanne2sons!! I am definitely copying your note and keeping it for a day when I need the moral support!!
        THANK YOU!!

    • joanne2sons October 6, 2015 at 2:26 am #

      Dear View from Here,
      Like Transmom, I too would like to reach out and give you a hug. Navigating this near territory is really scary. Reading your post about your fears and struggles, sounds so familiar!! 2 months ago, my 21 year old college daughter informed us that she is transgender. Like your child, she told us she was gay last summer. She has now changed her name to Matt (although not legally), cut her hair short and is wearing boy clothes. Currently, that is all that “he” is changing…although I know that too could change. It’s been just over 2 months now, and I’m FINALLY able to tell my friends about my new “son” without crying. Although, I still have more people to tell…it takes time and I need to be in the right mood. I’m not saying that I still don’t have lots of worries, but when we visited our son a couple weeks ago, he seemed very happy as a boy — although he still looks like my daughter to me. He still is the same person, but now he seems happier. Both my husband and I have been doing our best to call him by his new name and use the correct pronouns. Occasionally we mess up, but usually catch our errors right away. I’ve been going to a couple of support groups in the Sacramento area, and they have both been extremely helpful. Meeting transgender people who have jobs and are involved in relationships is very therapeutic for me. The support that I’ve received from the people in the group is very uplifting. In addition to the support groups, I’ve been going to a therapist to help me navigate this new journey. As I mentioned in a previous post, it is if we are learning how to swim…my husband was able to swim a lap within a few days, but it’s taken me about 6 weeks! However, I think I finally managed to get to the deep end without my floaties!! 🙂 Every once in a while, I’ll see something (i.e. prom dresses at Macy’s) and I’ll get teary-eyed, thinking about all those times I went shopping with my daughter for homecoming & prom dresses. However, like Transmom has said…Time Does Heal…even though those fears still manage to creep back into my mind. Hopefully, eventually, I will be able to deal with those fears. Hang in there!!!

      • transmom October 6, 2015 at 11:33 pm #

        Thanks sooo much for update, joanne2sons!!I love the swimming without floaties metaphor!! Here my kiddo is in LAW SCHOOL on a FULL-RIDE SCHOLARSHIP and I STILL worry- really?!! Welcome to my land of being a mom!! Hugs to both you and to The View From Here!!

  50. Popcorn1982 October 11, 2015 at 8:11 pm #

    Hello. My 12 year old just told me yesterday that he has always felt like a girl. I just thought he would be gay and effeminate. I am accepting of it i have just not stopped cryin the past 12 hours. Knowing that he has been so sad this whole time devastates me.

    • transmom October 12, 2015 at 3:52 am #

      Hi Popcorn1982! I so understand what you are going through right now! I wish I could be there to give you a hug and let you know that you do NOT have to blame yourself! Soooo many of us loving moms feel immediate guilt and blame ourselves when we know that our children have experienced pain. I hear your devastation in this news from your 12 year-old! Here’s another consideration: this is not a path that you knew about or encouraged. You believed from your own experience what would be (your son to be gay). I did the same exact thing with my (now) son! I didn’t know any transgender folks and that possibility wasn’t anywhere in my psyche! I knew many gay folks, and that was an easy place to explain the differences I saw in my child. It was easy for me to make it all make sense to me by assigning him “to that box”. Correct? no. Strategic? No. Insightful? No. But that doesn’t mean I did my child harm, nor was it my fault! This is not YOUR fault. You are there for your 12 year-old NOW!! Hell, adolescence sucks for almost everyone on the planet; yours will have different challenges, but will not be alone because they have you NOW!! You will have enough to consider in these next months, so the sooner you are able to forgive yourself, the better!! You love your kid. They will be safe and sound with you as their supporter and advocate!! If it is at all possible during this crazy emotional time, I hope you can save the tears for your private hours and bring support, strength and encouragement in the face of your child!! Good luck to you!! Please know there are so very many moms just like you that have weathered the tears and found joy in the transformation of their authentic children!!

  51. Rachelle Berman October 19, 2015 at 3:09 pm #

    My son is eighteen and has just told me he wants to be a women

    • transmom October 20, 2015 at 3:55 am #

      Hi Rachelle. Are you shocked by this news? Transitioning from male to female is not typically an easy journey.How are you doing with this news?

    • Coley October 21, 2015 at 9:07 pm #

      Hi Rachel… I too just learned from my openly 18yrs old gay son, that he wants to undergo total transformation to female. I love my child w/ ALL my heart and as his mom, I’ll support and love him through its entirety. You guys, please remember me and my fam in your prayers, as I’ll continue to uplift ALL of you as well!!! There is NO shame in being the parent of a gay child… The shame is in being ashamed!!!

      • transmom October 31, 2015 at 3:41 am #

        You are so very right, Coley!! There is no shame in loving your kid- no matter how they present themselves!!! I pray that you continue to have the strength to be the loving mom you are meant to be!!

  52. Norma October 25, 2015 at 9:10 pm #

    I have a sibling hat is trans. He is becoming a female. But there are a lot of issues with him and that has broken up our family emotionally. My parents completely support him in all this and so do I and my other sister. But even with all that support there are a lot of issues he has. He does not want to get any help. He says he knows what they will tell him so he doesn’t need help. We just got into a small physical argument that tore everyone apart. He dust respects my parents and just stays home. He hasn’t left the house in about 3yrs and refuses too. He is highly loved and has support from everyone. I just don’t know what to do anymore. My parents don’t know what to do. They are both Spanish speaking and have some trouble looking for help. Please help us!

    • transmom October 31, 2015 at 3:57 am #

      I wish I had the perfect answer for you, Norma…unfortunately, I really only have a few suggestions. It seems like since your brother hasn”t been out of the house for 3 years, there is more going on for him than only gender issues. I hope that he will be able to get some counseling. Have you researched support groups and mental health programs in your area? Even if he is not willing to seek professional help- you and your parents CAN!! This will at least help you cope with the stress at home!! Good luck to you!

  53. JeanG October 30, 2015 at 5:40 am #

    So thankful for this site – reading all the entries has helped me to realize that I am not the only mother out there with a 24 year old son who is transgender. My husband died a few months ago and now my son tells me he is transgender and going to Thailand after Christmas for surgery to change him to a female, also to make his male nose smaller and maybe forehead surgery too.. I feel as though I have had 2 deaths in the family, my husband and now my son. I cried for them both and thought I would tell my son that I couldn’t bear to see him after the surgery – his body works perfectly and he wants to slice it up, I can’t believe it and don’t understand it. Like others heartfelt entries here, I feel as though he has thrown away all we have tried so hard to do when raising him, even the name we gave him and that maybe I should get out of his life as well.

    • transmom October 31, 2015 at 3:53 am #

      such a horribly painful time for you, Jena G! I hope by the time you read my note to you that you have been able to speak with your son again.I think the fact that so many are willing to travel all the way to Thailand speaks to the desperation they must feel to transition! I hope that his surgeries go well and that you two will have time to heal together!

  54. Elizabeth Dennis November 5, 2015 at 1:03 pm #

    I am crying at “losing”my beautiful boy. I just found out that at 25years old he is taking hormone therapy for transgender. He has changed his name also. I support him and in the back of my mind i know everything is alright however , i am grieving about this. Just found out yesterday

    • transmom November 8, 2015 at 10:28 pm #

      Hi Liz! Of course you are crying and grieving with this news- it is not what we expect when we bring a baby into the world and nurture them for 25 years! Hang in there- I know he will appreciate your ability to be supportive and continue to love him!! He will need your support- transitioning is not easy!! Give yourself a big hug and know there are lots of moms going through this with you! You are NOT alone!!

  55. jlockwoodphotography November 6, 2015 at 4:46 am #

    I need help. My sister, formally my brother, has been estranged from my family for almost a decade. She talks to me every now and then, but we are not close. Ive known about the transition for a few years now but have not told my parents because 1) Im scared 2) Its her story to tell if she wants to. The problem is we all live in the same town and she is an amazing activist in this area. She is starting to make the news for her seriously awesome activism for transgender rights in the workplace. So now I feel like I need to tell my parents so they hear it from me, not the news. I feel my mom is going to be very upset with me for doging questions about her for a few years and not telling her what is really going. I feel stuck and anxious. At the same time I dont want to tell them. As a mom myself I cant imagine the pain of one of my sons not talking to me for 10 year then being introduced to your daughter on the news?? What do I do? But I dont know what telling them will do either. Do i just ride it out forever? She wants nothing to do with our parents so a relationship doesnt matter to her at all. But im there and they know I have a way of communicating. I just dont know if I can hold the axiety of lying to them, but im too scared to get it over with. Help. Thoughts?

    • transmom November 8, 2015 at 10:38 pm #

      You are in a tough spot!! Of course you are scared!!! I think at the end of the day, you have to be able to live comfortably with yourself. Personally, I would ask your sister to give you her blessing to share this news with your parents. If your sister does not want anything to do with your parents, then I think that she would be okay knowing that this would help YOU. I am hopeful that since there has been so much more recently on that news about transgender rights and people coming out, that your parents will perhaps be more open that they might have been years ago. I think that you can only explain that this was never your news to share so you didn’t…but now that this may become public- you care enough about how they feel and might learn of this news, that you are willing to step up- even if it causes discomfort and anger. I will require sitting down and having time to explain all of your feelings! Good luck to you!!!! You are a loving daughter and sister to want to preserve BOTH relationships while continuing to respect the feelings of each!!!!

  56. LovingMom November 12, 2015 at 2:39 pm #

    I just stumbled across your posts and they’ve really hit home. My son told us this summer he is a girl. He is 15. We are very open and loving and seeking help. He’s seeing s specialist. What I can’t get over is that there is not one single sign he is female. I read a post that said he might as well have said he’s a giraffe. I identified with that. I swear I will be supportive and the biggest activist once I understand it. He has a history of ocd and diving into things. We wondered at first if this is like that but now I do think it’s real. I’m so worried and scared. My husband is amazing, thank God we have each other. I know I’m not moving fast enough for my son. I’m trying. We go see the specialist soon so that should help. Thx for listening.

    • transmom November 17, 2015 at 4:21 am #

      Hi LovingMom! That you are!- a loving mom!! I am so happy to know you are seeking a specialist. Having outside support with experience can be so important. Like so many times that we moms find ourselves dealing with a child that is not really hearing our opinions or feelings (“you are just my mom-duh”)…it can be helpful to have an OUTSIDE voice be the one of reason! THAT voice kids are often more likely to listen to! In addition, it sure helped me not to feel like I was insane. I was able to ask many questions that I learned lots of moms ask (and many of these I had to hear answers for MORE than once): “Could I have caused this?” and “I don’t really see this as REAL- Should I argue with her?” and “I’m terribly sad but don’t want to appear unsupportive- what do I do?” It’s so difficult to believe our kids when this seems so be soming out of left field- but this is NOT our call. It is not OUR body. You, LovingMom, are doing the right thing- you are walking alongside your child the best way you know how! Hang in!

    • LovingMom November 25, 2015 at 11:59 am #

      Thank you so much. It is great to talk to someone who understands. This week my husband and I met with the gender specialist. After several sessions with my son, he says he definitely confirms his gender dysphoria. It was almost a relief. My son has struggled for so long and we never knew why. We don’t know what the end result will be and my son isn’t either but we are in it together. Thx so much!

      • transmom November 26, 2015 at 4:26 am #

        I’m glad there is some relief knowing that the path you are on is the right one!! Have a fabulous Thanksgiving!!

  57. Judy November 13, 2015 at 11:20 pm #

    I am proud of my translady but do admit it is unfamiliar teritory for me but one I am sure to love and support her through it! I’m scared of the side effects her shots started today…

    • transmom November 17, 2015 at 4:24 am #

      This is a scary journey, Judy- I agree!! There have been so many folks that have remained on hormones successfully that I have faith my son will live a healthy life. The great part is watching them enjoy the positive effects those hormones provide!!

  58. Jacki H. November 16, 2015 at 6:16 pm #

    My son came out to me September 2014 as bi sexual trans female at 34 yrs. old.. I tried to be very open and handle it well I was going through a divorce myself.. he told me it would be a long process and we could go through it together, within 2 weeks hey was totally dressing as a woman came out to his work and legally changed his name within a couple of months oh, I did not handle it well being thrown at me so quickly, so he quit speaking to me and no matter what I do he will not contact me for over a year now.. I even left him a letter on his car telling him to please contact me I love him.., I did not use any gender-specific language he posted it on facebook blasting me as a stocker..my ex husband and other son are really not helpful in this are..I miss the relationship horrible ..I still refer to him in male terms as I have not met the person now as female. .

    • transmom November 17, 2015 at 4:42 am #

      I’m so sorry that you are struggling with your relationship with your child, Jacki H! I can hear how devastating this is for you! I don’t know why some children feel the need to struggle with being able to forgive our inability to keep up with their transitions. Certainly not all folks going through transitions do this, just as not all parents are supportive of their child’s transition. All I can offer is to remind you that there are many other moms out there that struggle to find a balanced relationship with their son or daughter! In addition, there are lots of kids- trans or not!- that push their parents away only to welcome them back into their lives years later! I hope you will keep trying and not giving up hope that this will be the case for you. If I had to respond to your now daughter, it would be another note on her car: “Hi (new name), I am the only mother you will ever have. I have always loved you, have never stopped loving you, and never will. If that makes me a stalker, I guess I am!”

      • Jacki H November 17, 2015 at 6:05 pm #

        Thank you for your input, that certainly helps me.. and that is a great idea for a note!..My younger son says leave (her) alone until she is ready, but, I miss the relationship so much..

      • transmom November 18, 2015 at 12:04 am #

        You are most welcome, Jacki H! It’s easy for someone else to say, “Leave her alone”…but not so easy when this is your child!! Hey- it’s not as if you are going to continue to try to reach her and really stalk her..this is a one shot deal simple to remind her that you STILL are available for support- that you STILL love her! This, at least, puts your mind at rest that you have tried to extend yourself in the only way you know how and that she will be aware of that. You can’t make her have a relationship, forgive any misunderstandings, etc…but at least she will know where you stand!! Good luck to you!!!

      • Jacki H. November 18, 2015 at 1:52 am #

        I miss the relationship so much, after my first divorce we were alone for 8 yrs..I had him at only 18, we really grew up together!..and I NEVER could have imagined a severed relationship. .I will never lose hope

      • transmom November 18, 2015 at 4:10 am #

        Wow, Jacki- I bet you DO miss your relationship!! Growing up together and then to be a single mom…I know how close you become as a single parent!! Keep up the faith!!

  59. Natalie December 8, 2015 at 9:02 am #

    My daughter was self harming and really hated her self , this broke my hart when I saw what she was doing to her self I just felt so helpless because she wouldn’t tell the doctor s what was wrong, she would just say it was a way of dealing with anger,the doctor did nothing to help ,after she posted something on face book about supporting transgender I started to wonder if that might be the issue so I confronted her one day when she was having another self hate day and asked if it was that and she said yes so I got her the oppreate help ,so this is the start of the journey I want to be supportive of her but worry and wish it wasn’t happening ,my daughter has very dark moods and has trouble sleeping get very stressed easily and sometimes I worry will she be happy when she goes though the transition or could it be depression as there were no signs of this as a child only when she reached puberty but I’ve heard this can happen ,I just worry how she will cope and will all these feelings of hate for her self go away I just want her to be happy it breaks my heart to see her sad .

    • transmom December 11, 2015 at 2:31 am #

      Dear Natalie, You are such a loving mother- I can see evidence of this in your note! You didn’t dismiss what you knew where serious problems when the doctor did. You didn’t look the other way when you suspected your daughter’s concerns could be related to her being transgender. And now that she may be considering transitioning and that you worry about this effect on her- you continue to support her! Good for you!! Depression could be one o the symptoms she is feeling- and since you don’t know yet if this is the case, why not encourage her to see a therapist that specializes in transgender issues? I’m sure that ALL transgender folks face sadness before, during and after transitioning- this is not an “easy fix”! This is very complex and navigating the world as a new gender, introducing yourself to family, friends and co-workers can only be stressful!! I know your daughter will appreciate your support no matter what direction this new realization takes! Continue seeking support because that is the healthiest route for BOTH of you!

      • Natalie December 11, 2015 at 5:47 pm #

        Thanks for the kind comments it’s good here there others going though the same thing,I

  60. Adriana Thompson December 11, 2015 at 1:00 am #

    My son is Transgender and is 18, I feel like u don’t even know where to start, how do I help him/her?

    • transmom December 11, 2015 at 2:59 am #

      Hi Adriana! You are starting right- right by asking here! check out my post called “Showing Up for Your Child”!!
      1-Take a look at my resources guide- start finding books that the titles sound like they would be a good “fit” for you. For example, since my son was transitioning from female to male, books by moms in similar situations were really interesting to me. I also liked reading books by female-to-male authors!
      2- If you look at our terms list, that can also be helpful!
      3-Finding a therapist that specializes in transgender issues for you AND your son is ideal- but I understand not everyone has access to such services. Try looking online and contacting your local LGBT center for recommendations!
      4- Also see if you can find a local support group- sitting down with other parents once a month was a LIFE-SAVER for me!!
      5- Start to keep a journal…just getting your thoughts, worries, concerns, questions on paper takes them out of your head and relieves stress!! It will also help you organize your next steps!
      6- Be with your child! Letting them know how much you love them is CRUCIAL to them right now and it gives you something to do that is critically important!! Just being them to listen to them and support will build a bond during a very difficult time!
      7- Pat yourself on the back and give yourself credit!! You are loving!! You are a fabulous mom!!

  61. Jen December 16, 2015 at 8:04 pm #

    I am the mother of a transgender child who is only 16. As the mother I want to be there for him, but I dont feel ready. I dont know what to do before I lose him.

    • transmom December 18, 2015 at 1:28 am #

      Dear Jen- there is no reason to “lose” your him! He will still be there- just transformed into the happy girl he was meant to be!! Now I know this is hard- ridiculously hard- but try to remember it’s not the gender of your child you love, but your child! So many of us moms go straight to worry and fear when we are confronted with such drastic differences! That’s just downright normal!! Since we have never experienced this- something is sure to be horrible, right? But honestly, now that I am four years “out”- I NEVER- and I mean NEVER!! miss my daughter! I have my son, thank God, and he is happy and healthy and amazing in all ways! I can’t miss her because THIS is my authentic child!! He is whom I see in my dreams. His is the voice I hear when I reimagine our conversations. When I think of my child, I see his new name in my head and all this is seamless- without effort. HE is real!
      Embrace everyday of this journey, if you can, Jen…this is not a death…it is merely a physical transformation.

      Try to be present each and every moment because for these first two years there will be so many changes and being a part of this journey is a privilege! He is choosing to experience WITH you rather than apart from you later, as an adult! He trusts you- what a huge compliment at a time when so many teens are struggling to even speak to their parents!!

      -Stay strong: get support from family, friends, a group of parents in the same place you are in
      -Sleep and take good care of yourself.
      Most importantly: TRUST!! Trust your child! Trust the journey!

  62. Eileen January 4, 2016 at 4:30 pm #

    Thank you for this site. My situation I am sure is not unusual and yet I am alone in it. It is actually not ‘my situation’ but my child’s with her mother (me).

    My daughter, and I will call her that until she tells me to call her something else, did not come out to me as transgender. I learned if this and then went online to see if I could verify that she considered herself transgender. This way, the information wasn’t received from a third party and even though there were many ways I had surmised it already, I preferred to know that she indeed felt this way.

    My search produced an article she authored in with the article she identified herself as ‘trans.’ Since all this occurred after a terrible visit with her at college, I sent her a well thought out note expressing my knowledge and acceptance. She did not reply. Nor did she bring it up when she visited home the next two times. A psychologist at her high school who was aware of all of this for years, suggested if the moment was right, I ask if she preferred to be called by a different name. We had such a moment but she was angry. She said that she never intended to come out to me. That she wanted to keep me out of that part of her life. When I objected that this would essentially keep me out of almost all aspects of her life, she remained resolute. I asked her if she would help to educate me. I reiterated old apologies and new, heartfelt promises. I am saddened to know that she planned and plans to keep me at an extreme distance for the unforeseen future.

    I have been reading books. I have been seeking other information. I want to support her in her life wherever it takes her, personally, professionally politically wherever.

    Today I am having coffee with a transgender co-worker and I hope to understand more from my child’s perspective. She is the same age as my daughter and though she has come out to some, she hasn’t to her parents. We are dealing with the opposite ends of similar situations.

    Still this morning for the first time I had immeasurable anxiety over all of this. It suddenly hit me like a ton of bricks.

    Hopefully there is support and guidance out here to help me navigate. I know it’s not about me but there is a part of me that can’t help but feel as though there are all these children coming out to their parents and when I want to do what I can to support her, well I don’t understand completely why she doesn’t want me in her life unless she doesn’t trust me or love me. And I understand that may be the case. And even if someone is your child they don’t have to love you or trust that their best interests are all you have for them…. Thanks

    • transmom January 15, 2016 at 4:39 am #

      So sorry that it has taken me a while to get back to you, Eileen!! It is very interesting that you have written asking about this because just last week I spoke to another mother that is in the SAME position as you!! She is also filled with unconditional love and support for her adult child and has been reaching out- only to be dismissed and rejected. Only you can truly understand and feel the pain that she is also undergoing! Would you like to speak with her by phone? If you go to my FB page, you can leave me a private message and I can “hook you up”. I also had two moms from a local support group offer to get contact and reach out to her- perhaps you can speak with them as well!! I know my connections with other moms has meant the world to me!! Please consider it, Eileen!!

      • sadmom January 22, 2016 at 8:28 pm #

        I have recently had an experience somewhat similar to Eileen’s, though at this point, I seem to have lost contact with my adult child entirely. I am also still referring to my child as ‘she’ as I am not sure how she is identifying herself. She came out as bisexual a few years ago, while she was in college, but later told me that she is ‘gender nonbinary’ and some other things I’m not sure I completely understand. I do know that she likes to wear men’s clothes and is trying to do things to make herself look more masculine. She has not officially come out and said she is transitioning, but I suspect that could be what is going on with her, or at least it is something she is strongly considering. I have told her that my love is unconditional, but in our last conversation she accused me of using gender pronouns after having asked me not to even though I am almost certain this was not the case. I told her that I hadn’t, or that if I had, it was not intentional, and that she need to be a bit patient with me too. This is apparently not what she wanted to hear, telling me she did not want any contact with me until further notice. She had told me recently that she wants nothing from her past life, her childhood, in terms of things, and I suspect she has been searching for a reason to get me out of her life as well (she has become increasingly confrontational or sullen when we talk) because it reminds her that she was born a female. I don’t know if it will be possible to talk to my child again, as in spite of the fact I begged her not to cut me out of her life, she seems determined to do so. I can understand how she might think this will be better for her – and maybe it will in fact be – but it is killing me. If she is finding the life she wants, and this is the only way she can do it, I will have to accept it, but maybe their are some other moms or parents out there who have been through something similar and give some advice on how to handle such things. I haven’t had a chance yet to read through the entries on you site, but plan to do so after posting this. I am so thankful that you made this blog, and wish the best for the parents and kids out there in their life’s journey.

      • transmom January 25, 2016 at 1:23 am #

        Dear Sadmom- I hear your pain and anguish and I am sending you a virtual hug! I wish I could hold your hand, look you in the eye, and promise everything is going to turn out the way that would make you happiest. Alas, that ain’t happening! Truth is, this challenging relationship piece is not only regulated to transkids and their families!! This is a broken relationship and this time, it just happens to be centered around your child’s identity and their struggle around that. I am suggesting that this “disconnect” also occurs in families around their child’s relationship with someone that the family doesn’t approve of or a change in occupation that parents aren’t excited about. For example, close friends of ours haven’t heard from or spoken to their son for 6 years! Why? He had always struggled with drug use and wasn’t able to hold down a steady job. He decided to go into the medical marijuana business. They voiced their concerns and voila! He was history! One conversation and he had come to the conclusion that he didn’t want to bother with them. Really?!! Whoa! I share this because I think there are sometimes when some of our adult children need to behave in extreme ways in order to move on and make independent choices. When I hear about these different scenarios between parents and children, I can only (1) scratch my head in disbelief and confusion, and (2) appreciate how fortunate I am not to be experiencing that challenge firsthand!
        Sadmom, you are doing what you can!! I encourage you to keep “the fires burning” : the love in your heart maintained, the openness of spirit ongoing, and your willingness to listen at the ready!! The best to you!!

      • Eileen January 25, 2016 at 1:30 am #

        I am so sorry to hear about your situation. This is my great fear, that my daughter will eventually completely cut me out of her life. I do understand the complexities our children are confronting, and part of me also comprehends their desire to try not to remember their earlier lives but I don’t understand why they would want to, without giving us a chance after learning more about our kids, to try to adapt our thinking and behavior to allow us to address and refer to them properly, to realize our live and support is undying and to know that forever we will support them unconditionally.
        My daughter continues to maintain contact with me (from college) on almost a daily basis though usually about benign matters. We don’t discuss this very often. I don’t know if she intends to allow me back in one day. For now I am just trying to educate myself as best I can and carry on hoping for the best, preparing for less than the best… It’s difficult though wanting to support and effectively being shut out.

      • transmom January 25, 2016 at 1:32 am #

        Thanks for joining in on this conversation, Eileen! I know the insights you have shared will be helpful to not only “Sadmom”, but to countless other readers!!

      • Eileen January 25, 2016 at 2:06 am #

        Thank you. I have learned that others who identify as transgender – who are not our family members – are much more forgiving, reasonable and understanding of those from a different generation who didn’t grow up with this vocabulary and lifestyle verbalized. I work with a 19 year old who is transgender. She and I spoke about our individuals challenges one day for over a half hour. I was so incredibly lucky to be afforded that opportunity. Every so often I say ‘he’ instead of ‘she’ and she is so okay with that: she understands I didn’t do it on purpose, didn’t intend to offend… She realizes my generation didn’t grow up as did my childrens’ generation.
        I have offered her a place to stay (and gave her a key) since she would like to move out of her parents home but really doesn’t have the ability to rent a place yet. I feel life is hard enough as is that if I can offer her some peace away from a stressful situation, it’s the least I can do. I would hope that someone do that fo my daughter if she felt that way and that person was able.
        Anyway, to be sure, these situations are very difficult. One hopes there is fluidity in the feelings, that minds will change, and acceptance on both sides will occur for everyone who has such challenges as we do.

      • transmom January 25, 2016 at 2:46 am #

        So well articulated, Eileen! You are so generous of spirit- bless you! I hope that your child will recognize that soon!

  63. lilly January 23, 2016 at 9:29 am #

    I am so supportive of my child. I had a boy who is a girl. I feel a loss, am I ignorant?

    • transmom January 25, 2016 at 1:30 am #

      Hi Lily! You are NOT, NOT, NOT ignorant!! YOU ARE A NORMAL LOVING PARENT THAT WASN’T EXPECTING THIS!! Please read some of my blog posts from over the last 4 years!! I have ABSOLUTELY felt a loss along with a myriad of other emotions throughout my son’s transition!! Frankly, some of them I am not exactly proud of feeling: I was initially embarrassed. I worried about what others thought of me. But I have forgiven myself those way less than generous thoughts and feel, instead, a new appreciation for my son’s strength and conviction! I am buoyed by the unconditional love I learned to inhabit along the way! You, too, will go through many thoughts, worries, and concerns because, well, you are a mom AND you are in a position of challenge…one you are willing to take on! Good for you!! Keep feeling! Keep supporting and loving your kid!!

  64. Corie Dickinson January 27, 2016 at 1:07 am #

    My daughter came out 3 years ago being gay, I kind of knew something was up. Well 3 years later she is now telling me she is transgender and wanting to start hormones! I love her and support her but I’m not sure if she is serious. Should I show her pictures, that I have seen since I started this journey, and the scares are atrocious! I’ve cried every night for 3 nights so far! Her dad will find out next month. He just accepted her bring gay! Oh Lord!

    • transmom February 1, 2016 at 1:47 am #

      Hi Corie!! My experience was similar to yours…I accepted my child as being “gay” and then was hit with her (it feels super weird for me to even say “her” now!!) being transgender! I think for some individuals (and I certainly do not know if this is true for your daughter), they are not initially certain of who they truly are and may think that being gay is an answer to the dissidence they experience. I have come to learn that NO transgender people- male nor female at birth-takes transition lightly! Even the youngest children are EXTREMELY serious about this! In order to pass as male, my son was willing to bind his chest so tightly, that he developed horrendous daily back pain. It became a medical NECESSITY that we consider top surgery. Yet, he did not want to burden us with, so was willing to continue living in pain in order to be himself. How could that ever be okay? I know I would absolutely seek medical help if I was in pain daily!! That experience made me appreciate just how serious this transition was for my child. For his health. For his life.

      I believe with all my heart that your should take your daughter seriously, Corie! Steel yourself for difficult conversations so that you may better understand her journey thus far and how she came to this conclusion about herself! Listen to what she knows about herself. Yes, you can find lots of poorly done surgeries pictures, But there are also fabulous results! It’s about finding a doctor with experience! Do your research!! Good luck to your family!!!

  65. amy February 11, 2016 at 4:43 am #

    I just recently found out that my son is living a transgender life and has started the process to change physically. I come to tears, sobbing even as I type this, when it comes to this subject. I have so many emotions that are so overwhelming. I need this site. Just when I was thinking i needed a support group…..thanks.

    • transmom February 24, 2016 at 12:00 am #

      I’m so sorry that you are in such pain, Amy! So many of we moms have experienced the same! We want to much for our children to be happy, contented and lead an authentic life…and yet, when they choose to go this route to achieve that, we are filled with such fear and loss of what we know, that we are sometimes unable to see the positive potential in this change! I have found that we, too, have to “transition” if you will…we need to take time to become the mom of a different gendered child…it’s actually not difficult, but there is a whole lot of emotional baggage that we bring with us that makes this a challenging process! We worry that our friends and family will judge us and judge our child negatively. We worry that our children will not find love, jobs, or happiness. We worry that they will “try” this and then “go back”. We know that there are crazy folks out there and worry about the safety of our children. We worry we “did something”. Sound familiar?!! Give yourself time, Amy! Allow the tears, but keep reminding yourself that your child is NOT DEAD- thank God they are merely changing their appearance. Your child is going to be happier, so keep telling yourself that you are willing to do whatever it takes to make sure that his happiness is his new reality. Get busy reading, journaling and finding other moms in your area so that you are not alone!! Hang in there!! Write any time!! You’ve got this!!

    • penwolfson March 9, 2016 at 4:41 pm #

      I’m with you, Amy! All I can say is, it will get less painful, but it will take time. I’ve been going through this transition with my 23-year-old child for more than a year, and even though I sometimes still feel sad, we can finally talk and joke and hug. And I can see how much happier my child is.

      • transmom March 15, 2016 at 10:54 pm #

        Sooo happy to hear that, Penwolfson! It’s encouraging to hear that, with time, we find our way! Motherhood is the constant our children need!

  66. Karen February 12, 2016 at 7:26 pm #

    My daughter is getting her first shot today to transition into a male. Although I support her 100% I can’t help feel sad. Not even sure why. I don’t know anyone that is or has dealt with anything even close. Although I have kind friends n family no one can seem to help me. Selfish reasons I’m sure but does everyone feel this?

    • transmom February 24, 2016 at 12:08 am #

      Everyone I have spoken to has felt similarly!! It’s one thing to support your kid and another to have feelings about the whole process. You are allowed to have both simultaneously!! It is NOT fair that our kids have to do this to become themselves! It is NOT fair that outsiders feel they have the right to an opinion about something so personal. It is NOT fair that you have to be the first among your friends and family to experience this. I had that same feeling, Karen…I didn’t know where to turn! It took me months to find the right-fit group…and I’m in Los Angeles where one would think that one could find anything easily….but not so 4-5 years ago!! Friends tried to be kind and supportive, but I perceived a sense of sadness behind their eyes. I didn’t want pity- I wanted someone to say, “I didn’t sign up for this either!! I so agree!!!”…so feel free to contact the readers and me! I encourage you to continue to search for like-minded and like-experienced parents!! I SOOO get you, Karen!!

    • cryingmom February 25, 2016 at 10:18 pm #

      good luck, my daughter has taken three shots and it does start changing them, I Love my daughter and we where told in Dec and asked if she could move back home to be with us to go and be with her through it all. and it has not been that way at all, it is hard and we are with her and trying to understand it all, But it is hard to talk with her about it. she tells me you don’t understand and walks away to her room. it is true about feeling like your child is dead. It is a whole new way in your life.

      • transmom March 1, 2016 at 4:03 am #

        I would disagree with the semantics…I believe that our CHILDREN do not die- instead, their former IDENTITIES die…our children are VERY MUCH ALIVE and MUCH happier!! WE mourn the loss because we loved that part of our kids. But just like a mother who learns to look past her child’s disfigurement after an accident, we learn to see our child transformed!

  67. Ann February 23, 2016 at 7:16 am #

    I’m desperately unhappy , my daughter has cut me out her life , lives with her father now and refuses to see or speak to me . We were so close up until a year ago , she then started getting more distant , depressed , failed her AS levels and now is living with her father as a lad , wants to be known as Alex and has even started a part time job in the male gender ( I only know this all through my eldest son ) .im so scared for her , she needs support and love but I’m not supposed to know . Please help

    • transmom February 24, 2016 at 12:25 am #

      So many family relationships are very complicated, Ann! You are not alone in that! It is even more challenging when there are kids of divorce that still live with one of the parents because it’s easy for the other parent to be polarized. It’s usually not because of one single factor that leads to this. Many times, there has been an ongoing issue with communication breaking down. Many times, one parent is able to be treated in a “favored” way because that type of behavior is accepted by the parent who is aligned with the child. That kind of situation is very difficult to rectify because it takes” buy in” from the other parent to push for better communication and cooperation!! I would recommend counseling- a knowledgeable therapist can help make connections and build bridges EVEN when there is disharmony …as a family or in therapy alone with your child. If they are not willing, then I recommend that you write your child and let them know that you are wanting desperately to connect, to support them, to love them, but are unsure of how to do that…keep reaching out!!! Good luck!!

  68. Cheryl February 28, 2016 at 2:26 am #

    I can not accept my precious daughter as a boy. I physically get I’ll just looking at her now. She went to college and got lost.

    • transmom March 1, 2016 at 4:14 am #

      Hi Cheryl. We all bring different levels of acceptance into a challenge such as this! Our upbringings, previous experiences and values play into our reactions. I hear that this is INCREDIBLY painful and difficult for you! With that said, however, you DO have a choice: you can simply accept that you will feel this way and never vary from this while causing certain loss of any relationship with your daughter. Or, you can acknowledge that you are devastated and share with your daughter that you need time and, perhaps, some space to deal with this pain….that you ask her not to abandon you as that it is not your intention to abandon her. Share with her that it FEELS like she went away and lost herself. I would ask you to please consider having her share with you
      how SHE feels and why this huge decision is authentic for her. Acceptance does not happen overnight. I hope you will consider giving your relationship with your daughter the gift of time. You gave her the gift of life once…I, for one, believe that time and a commitment to love is indeed a part of that very gift. Thanks for considering.

  69. penwolfson March 8, 2016 at 10:43 pm #

    Thanks for this site. I have a similar situation; my 22 year old son “came out” over a year ago. It was a total shock to me, and very upsetting for a long while. Now I am in a much better place and getting to know my child on a different level. But I, too, suffered the worst of it pretty much on my own, though with support of husband, family, and friends. It’s only now I’m reaching out to others in my situation.

    • transmom March 10, 2016 at 7:17 pm #

      We are right here beside you, “Penwolfson”! I am happy to write nto you personally off this site-if you are on FB, you can leave me a message through my FB page Transforming Love:Support for Mothers of Transgender Children.
      Meanwhile, have you searched in your area for a parent support group? I found it great to meet with other moms- even when they had younger kids than I! Sometimes it made me realize how lucky I was NOT having had to navigate childhood-these moms are ROCK STARS!! Do you live near a large city where you might find such support ?

  70. Eileen March 9, 2016 at 2:04 am #

    I think that I have realized something recently. I don’t know if others have felt this way. But my child told me that she had no intentions of ever coming out to me as transgender. I kind of knew and then it was confirmed when I read an essay she wrote which was published online where she identifies as trans. I know she uses ‘they’ and ‘them’ as her pronouns and she uses another name at school, but since she hasn’t come out to me, has chosen to exclude me from this, I still refer to my child as a female. (I asked if she preferred I use another name, etc, but she has shut me out)

    In any event, I think that it is natural to have a period of ‘mourning’ the loss of your child as they once were. Ideally, one would mourn that briefly and then embrace their child with their current identity. So I feel I’m in limbo. I’ve lost my daughter, but I don’t get to embrace my son. I want to be able to.

    I know this is not about me. My child is dealing with a lot. And I guess it’s understandable that my child wants to control these aspects of life, but I guess I wish my child, who professes to be so liberal and open and understanding and accepting would, just for a moment see things from a mother’s perspective and just try to let me in. I’m happy to embrace my child as my son if only I’m allowed to. And that is my current frustration.

    Thanks for listening.

  71. katie March 10, 2016 at 9:49 pm #

    I just found out my 26 year old son is Trans. I’m looking in the Statesville, NC area for support groups for moms. I have read a lot of encouraging things here.

    • transmom March 15, 2016 at 10:58 pm #

      Good for you, Katie!! Keep searching to find local moms- until then, we are always here for you! You can also message me on FB on the Transforming Love:Support for Mothers of Transgender Children page and I will message you back personally. Until then, hang in there!!

  72. Beth March 15, 2016 at 11:18 am #

    It is a very difficult journey my son is 11 years old I think you have written that beautifully

    • transmom March 15, 2016 at 11:21 pm #

      Thank you, Beth! Let’s be honest- eleven can be difficult for a lot of kids- approaching puberty, questioning themselves! They worry is they are good enough or cool enough…then throw in gender conformity and it can be hell! I can only imagine how strong and resilient our trans kids have to become!! Wow! They are incredible! To stand up for what you need and trust about your self at that age is simply amazing! I hope you are able to find a little time each day to tell him how brave he is and how impressed you are with his strength! If he can get through this, then he can tackle ANY obstacle-become anything he wants – his future is open and waiting!

  73. Clueless March 16, 2016 at 3:48 am #

    This is my first post, I just learned about my son’s transitioning on March 10th. Through a text. Only because we received the bill for blood work. He is 27 years old and never ever shown any signs. To say the least, I’m floored. Never ever expected this. I’m not sure what to do or how to deal with this. I do love him unconditionally. It was just a shock like no other. I am hurting, but more than anything I worry about him. Honestly I can’t believe this is happening. I feel like I’m in a wild dream. I have never had so many emotions go through my mind, body and soul. Need support more than I can express

    • transmom March 20, 2016 at 2:24 pm #

      “Clueless”, I know you feel just that, but aside from the 18 wheeler that just side-swiped you and left you spinning, I’m hear to tell you that you are NOT “clueless”!! You said it all in your message: “I do love him unconditionally”. The bottom line is, that’s really all that you need to know!! As time propels you forward, you will learn to turn to that unconditional loving space, digging deep and finding resiliency. With that commitment, I can assure you, you will be fine! It DOES take time!! This IS really hard as a mom! But you’ve got this!!

      First step: breathing! in and out! Look for find a place within where you are okay with not having control over this time. Your child is an adult. This change is what he is deciding and desiring! Look for support groups in your area. begin reading. Continue to reach out. Journal. These steps will help you hold it together while you find your footing!!

      Picture your fears being set aside and replace them with an image of your son’s life being anchored by joy and contentment. Your fears ARE real, but, honestly, you can’t be of support to your son if you let those fears consume you!!

      You DO need to be of support to him because that is what is going to help YOU through this process!! Learn about how he got to this place, find out what acceptance looks like to him, and help him move forward. Try to stay in touch without smothering (harder than it sounds when you are worrying).

      THIS IS INCREDIBLY HARD WHEN YOUR CHILD IS AN ADULT!! All of our years of up close and personal mothering skills kick into high gear and we can’t help but want to save our child!! I’ve been there, Sister! But you can ruin your health and your ability to get beyond the fear if you don’t tap into the belief that your son is going to be alright and you both will overcome the present emotional hurdles!! I swear- it DOES get GREAT!! When your child is content and at peace with themselves, YOU WILL BE TOO!!

      We can chat more via my Facebook page if you message me!!I Meanwhile, I’m sending you virtual hugs!!

  74. Sherry March 16, 2016 at 6:16 am #

    My oldest child at 21 told us 6 weeks ago that he identifies as trans and with our support wishes to transition to male. It all seems so obvious that we feel stupid for not have realized it in his early years. He never felt comfortable in female gender roles and we allowed him to dress, play and be as he wished-which was all male.

    Thankfully, he has an amazing boyfriend who “loves him for him, not his body”. But sadly, we live in Mississippi where there are no hate laws, no protection and few who care to help. Our only worry I know we have a big journey ahead of us and things are moving so quickly! I’m glad to find an older child blog to follow so I wouldn’t have to it myself! Lol. Our only big worry is someone hurting him. Hopefully, friends and family will eventually come along and his little brother at 18 is thrilled to have a “new” brother.

    Today was the big haircut day! Thankfully, the stylist was very understanding even texting later to make sure he liked his hair. (It had been waist level for years.) I wish everyone- friends, family and community could know how awesome that felt and respond in kind-we’d change the world!

    Best wishes to everyone who comes here. Whether you’re “all for it” or not, I applaud that you’re looking for information and support. Remember, that child you’ve loved is the same child who stands before you now needing your love. Give them a big old hug- no matter their age!

    • transmom March 20, 2016 at 2:33 pm #

      Dearest Sherry- BLESS YOU!!! You are so well on your way that you are ALREADY encouragement to so many other moms out there!! Your words speak loudly and clearly to what our kids REALLY require: our ongoing love and support! Sherry- your message was elegant in it’s message:
      “Give them a big old hug- no matter their age!” I can see that the big old hug your son is receiving is MUCH more than the literal embraces he receives from you- but you are PRESENT with him and BEHIND him in very tangible ways: Being there for the important haircut!! Calling him by his chosen pronouns!! Accepting his partner!!
      Your son is blessed to have you- it is clear to me that you do worry, but you are able to already balance that with your focus on support. Keep working that!!

      Thank you for sharing!!!

    • katie taylor March 20, 2016 at 9:03 pm #

      I think I’m going to lose it. I love my son dearly, but I do not know how to deal with this. I have been going with him to some coucenlling and today he let me know that I’m the fault in all that has happened to him. I feel so guilty and scared. He likes to scare me with suicide. It has been three weeks since I even prayed to God, because I’m mad at him. I’m just scared and don’t know how to feel. I only know I love my son. I want my son back, the one I have known for 26 years. Now he has disappeared. confused on how to deal. Katie

      • transmom March 24, 2016 at 3:24 am #

        Dear Katie, I can only imagine that you feel frightened and like you’re “going to lose it”! I would, too! I have to be honest with you, from my end with the little that you have shared, it seems like he is just lashing out. Not sure how the counselor handled this when he accused you of you being the cause of his problems, but there should be someone that is letting him know that at 26, he has to own his own problems and deal with his life in the present Blaming you or anyone else is not going to help him life his life completely or happily! In my opinion, he sounds like he is able to scare you and get that intended effect because his actions do cause you to react. I recommend that you see the counselor privately and make a plan for how to go forward! The best of luck to you!

  75. Sally March 16, 2016 at 6:53 am #

    I love my daughter immensely. Wow, I said it. Her birth certificate states she is a male. She came out to us last year. Because she is my child, I know 100% that she would never choose this lifestyle. It’s how she was born. I’m a devout christian and my children went to church weekly and attended private christian schools. My daughter wasn’t able to accept herself until college. I never saw a clue about her being transgender, I assume she was hiding her feelings. What pain she must have been experiencing. I’m afraid her upbringing made it difficult for her to accept herself because being transgender is never discussed in a christian environment. She seems happy now. I’ve always prayed to God for happiness to fill my children’s hearts. If this is what it takes to make my daughter happy then more power to her. I have a big issue with her being transgender: I’m frightened for her because of all the hate in this world.

    • transmom March 20, 2016 at 2:46 pm #

      Dear Sally- WOW!! I’m impressed!! It is so often that parents struggle to find acceptance of their child when their religious teachings are in conflict with a new identity! You have an amazing heart to put your child first- your DAUGHTER!! (great for you!!)

      I agree that these are very difficult and dangerous times…but, this is the first time that our children ARE able to declare their own identities! As mothers, we need to continue to work within our communities to build acceptance and understanding of our transgender children. As we accept and embrace them, so can others!

      My biggest takeaway form your message is that prayers ARE fulfilled: Your daughter is happy!

  76. cat April 1, 2016 at 5:21 am #

    I am beside myself today. Today my 14 yr old son decided to tell me that he is transgender and identifies as a female. Now he wants me to call him Katelyn Nicole and I just don’t know what to do! I feel bewildered! My son who has never shown even the slightest feminine tendency is now telling me he has felt this way since he was 9/10. I just don’t get it. I am having a hard time buying into it all. I hate to be the parent that says it is because of who he is hanging with but we moved to a new community, new school and now he is hanging with a group of LGBT kids and now he tells me this. I told him I love him no matter what and we would talk about it when he comes home but honestly I don’t know how to handle this. I truly feel he is just confused. Like maybe he is attracted to men and equates that with a need to be a girl or something…. Im at a loss. I will love my son regardless of what he feels he is or wants to be….I just don’t see how he can feel he is a female and has never in anyway had any femme tendencies….He was always very much a boys boy. into bugs and baseballs.

    • transmom April 4, 2016 at 7:23 am #

      You make a a great point, cat! It is difficult for moms to accept and understand this new reality when we DO see it coming!! I can’t say that adolescent acceptance may not be playing a role in this decision so my best advice is to find a therapist- a professional with experience in gender identity that can work with your son!! I know you will both find the truth if you give this the time and attention this difficult situation requires!!

  77. Michele April 7, 2016 at 8:15 am #

    Can not believe I have just found this. Well said! I am a mother of a FTM beautiful child. I am looking for other parents to relate too.

    • transmom April 7, 2016 at 8:15 pm #

      Hi Michele! Welcome to a space where we can share ours hopes as well as fears openly. There are so many like us that, with the support of others, can successfully navigate the emotional land mines and focus on the support our children need!! I applaud you for seeing the beauty in your child!!

  78. melissa April 16, 2016 at 8:05 pm #

    My son just came out as transgender and he is only 16 yrs old he started out saying he thought he was gay. I’m looking for any resources available to help me comfort him and talk with him. Thank you for anything you can provide. Your story has helped me so much already thank you so much.

    • transmom April 19, 2016 at 12:57 am #

      Hi Melissa! I’m so happy to hear you are supporting your son and helping him learn what he needs! Being an adolescent is NEVER easy- imagine going through this simultaneously!! Please check out my Resources page. I also highly recommend finding an experienced therapist in your area!! Someone that you can find through your local LGBT Center would be a great start. many cities have family groups wherein kids can be with other kids like them while the parents meet about their unique needs- that would be best!!
      Good luck to you both!!

  79. Melinda Johnson April 26, 2016 at 6:48 am #

    My daughter is transgender ftm I am supportive because I love her/him no matter what. He was also a drug addict an has been clean for months. He is in therapy for drugs, gender dysforia an relationship addiction. I see same councilor.
    But my other daughter is married to a man an they have 2 girls. They have criticized me for years about other daughter…. They push for me to disown even suttle threats about me not seeing gr-daughters. EVERYTIME I do see gr-daughters they say for me not to let my other daughter around them.
    Holidays are horrible!!!! They say if she’s going to be there we’re not coming. They’ve made rude comments to me about her and making fun of her when they say HIM.
    My husband ( her step dad ) is just as bad!
    My life is hell BUT I WILL NOT disown her btw he is now Noah an I’m slowly getting my pronouns adjusted. It’s been so hard to say him, he, Noah when they all are so vicious. I’ve been resently diagnosed w Complex PTSD after 14 years of a child w drug addiction, gay, transgender, homeless etc I had a near death exp an a complete blow up w step-son, husband an daughter!!!
    I am lost!!! Caught between two worlds….. I haven’t seen my grand daughters in 9 months, my step son that I adored as much as he was my own I haven’t talked to in 18 months.
    The grief you feel loosing family is unspeakable agony…. I understand that kind of pain. What I don’t understand is…. How people that are your family think abandoning is ok? Or how can u love an then turn it off? Or why it offends them, when it’s none of their business, an not reason to love or not love……. The person inside is same loving human being!!!
    I am so sorry your family disowned you!
    But they may not be able to bare the turmoil I’ve endured choosing to refuse to disown NO matter how much pressure is put on me!!! I’ve changed job, an cut out two 25 yr friendships to not be criticized or hear their remarks about transgenders. Just left in an aweful mess with my other child??? Can’t disown her either….. I love them both!
    Helpless mom

    • transmom April 27, 2016 at 11:29 pm #

      Dear Helpless Mom- I hear your pain- your agony!! Really, none of us is ever promised an easy life- an easy path. And why some of us seem to face a battle around every corner, I know I will never begin to understand. Frankly, it just isn’t fair!

      But, somehow, you appear to be able to get up every time you are knocked down! Incredibly, you have been able to see the insanity of others….and even when surrounded by it- have managed to maintain your own rationality! I COMMEND YOU!!!

      I encourage you to CONTINUE to follow your heart! You know what is right! You have been faced with all of these losses and I believe that you wouldn’t be able to live with yourself if you would turn your back on your child- even if it would give you access to your grandchildren or stepson! Your heart and your alliance is absolutely where it should be!

      Keep seeking therapy and loving moments with Noah- I believe those will make this journey bearable!!

      You are an AMAZING mother!! Noah is BLESSED to have you by his side, loving him unconditionally!

      • bay352015 April 28, 2016 at 3:18 am #

        I’m so sorry you are experiencing all of this pain. I understand as I have some similar problems with family. Not to that extreme but I’ve also dealt with addictions with loved ones and feel like I may have PTSD because of it. This is a confusing issue for family and for long time friends. I have felt the isolation. I also have a ftm adult child. The feeling of loss is overwhelming. The depression and anxiety that has taken over his life is difficult. People try to pretend it doesn’t matter but you can see on their faces that it’s not real. No one seems to understand. Which I also understand because I don’t either. But I just continue to love and embrace my child. I just want happiness for them. ________________________________

      • transmom May 10, 2016 at 11:28 pm #

        Thanks for your support for these moms- it’s always so reassuring to hear from loving moms like you!!!

  80. Carol Secord May 8, 2016 at 10:06 pm #

    If anybody could please help me, tell me how do I handle this, where do I go for help, somebody to talk to. I don’t know what to say, or how to respond once the transition starts. I have a beautiful, gorgeous daughter, almost 21, whom came out 2 yrs ago that she was gay. She has been living with another girl for the past year, and told me 3 weeks ago that she wants to be transgender. I have told her that I am sad that I will loose my only beautiful daughter, I love her and always will no matter what. But, I am hurting so badly inside, I don’t know how to handle this. I don’t know where to go, or who to talk to. I am in Collingwood, Ontario, Canada.

    • transmom May 10, 2016 at 11:27 pm #

      I am not sure of how the support systems work in Canada, Carol- so I hope someone can respond here. I recommend to all moms to seek the help of a professional counselor or support group that is experienced this gender issues! Are there LGBT support centers near you that might direct you to such support? Meanwhile, continue to talk about your feelings with family members or friends that will be supportive!! I encourage you to read books (check out my reference page) and some of my blogs on what I have experienced- my hope if that you will realize that you are NOT alone and your feelings are VALID and VALUED! You will have your own process around this!!! Accept that this IS tough work- but you are a loving mom that WILL continue to love your child- no matter how they appear or identify!! You CAN do this!! Feel free to message me privately on my FB page: Transforming Love: Support for Mothers of Transgender Children

    • bay352015 May 11, 2016 at 3:34 am #

      You have done all you can. You will continue to love your child and gradually accept this change. After all as parents what we want the most is to see them happy and content in life. We want for them to be independent and have a future. If that future depends on them changing what they were when they were young, then so be it. I am happy to continue to have the love of my now ftm child. My concern is that the transition doesn’t seem to be helping the depression and anxiety that I had attributed to being unable to be “who he wanted to be”. My job of parenting has changed now that my children are adults. Some struggles are inevitable and it does them a world of good to find ways to cope as adults. I am always available to listen or give comfort if needed. I also thought that watching the transition would be difficult. And I would be lying to tell you that it isn’t but I try to embrace that this person is still the same inside. Beautiful and loving. Try to find counseling for that someone to talk to. Friends will not always be very understanding and family even more confused but I have found that the world is changing so much and that many more people find this acceptable than they did a few years back.

      • transmom May 17, 2016 at 7:39 am #

        Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It isn’t an easy journey for any parent. Hearing how you are working to accept and focus on loving your child and respecting the person that they are is uplifting for all of us!

  81. Denise May 16, 2016 at 5:19 am #

    I have always been the first to live and let live. I have never discriminated against anyone. To each their own, different strokes for different folks and whatever make you happy. I have 4 children, 2 girls and 2 boys. Both of my girls are lesbian. I have to say it bothered me some at first but I forfeited they could be a lot worse things than lesbians. They could be on drugs, they could dying from something with no cure or they could be dead. Life goes on. Of the 2 girls I suspected one could be a lesbian when grew up. The second the never expected, I had no clue and I took it harder than the child that I had expected. Now my 2 girls are 28 ( the one I didn’t expect) the other girl is 24. Tuesday, May 10, 2016. My oldest daughter and I are having a conversation via text she says she need to talk me about something very. My response is what are you pregnant? She proceeds to tell me she is transgender and is about to begin the process of changing from female to male. I must say I am devastated. I saw the moemories of my daughter’s life pass through my mind. I felt as though I had been on the side of the road, looked both ways and as I began to walk I was hit by a semi. I never saw any signs of anything implying transgender, I didn’t even know she was a lesbian. I am searching my mind for the signs I may have missed. I have even crying for days. I love her with all my heart and I told her it was her choice. My heart hurts, I feel empty, I feel alone and I feel like I am mourning the loss of my daudhter. That is the only way I know to explain it. I do plan to seek counseling for mysel and my 12 year old. I know that if I can’t handle it, he can’t. She explained to me that she’s always felt as though she was in a body that didn’t belong to her, she felt this way her whole life. She tired to expect it and live her life only because she knew if she follows what she believes is her true gender she would hurt me. She said that was her worst fear. If it was anyone else’s child I’d understand, she’s still the same person and everything will be ok. I love her and I’d never turn my back on her but I just feel like once these injections start, the facial hair, the removal of her breastfeeding and the final surgery, once all this is done what I known as my daughter will disappear. I am having a hard time with this. I feel like I am being selfish, at the same time I feel like she is also. I have so many emotions running through me, desperation, sadness and anger. I just want to curl up in a ball. In my mind I understand everything but heart just isn’t getting it. I am at a loss. I walk around feeling like a shell of the person I once was. We have talked about a few times since that day. My daughter is so excited about the gender reassignment but she also is suffering with my pain. I just dont know how to process this, I feel like one day I just won’t recognize her anymore. How do I relate the memories of my daughter? The love I shared with her? I won’t be able to look at her and associate my memories to an image or a physical being that I can’t associate to my daughter. Then as if to add insult to injury m, I have to act as though she never existed? I love her, I support her and I respect her wanting to be happy. I am having such a hard time letting her go and anticipating the up coming changes makes me feels like she is going to slowly disappear. I understand she an adult, she has the right to live anyway she wants and I love her. She lives exactly the way I raised her to be. To be whatever she wants, not caring what others think and to live for her. I am just have very hard time with this. I’m guessing I not the only one and I guess I really don’t have a question. I just needed to release my feelings. I guess even though I told her its her life, to be happy. I am not ok with it. I feel like my daughter is dying and will slower fade away.

    • transmom May 17, 2016 at 8:30 am #

      Denise, I think all who read your words can feel your pain. Your anguish. Those feelings should not be denied- they are absolutely part of this process on our side of the transition. And we are happy you are releasing those feelings because we relate to them!! It’s a way for each of us to know we are not alone!

      The transition is a physical one for our children and purely an emotional one for us. It seems as if we really suffer while they are celebrating because they have ALREADY have been experiencing the personal struggle and anguish and are finally on their way now!

      Of course you love your child completely!! But it really is an entirely different thing to have to step up to loving your child UNCONDITIONALLY. I thought I always did love unconditionally. Yea- I just THOUGHT that. But my love was never tested. It turns out it was easy for me to love the child I knew and had already accepted along the way. Now this was out of my control and not what I wanted…in fact, it was what I feared that I was being asked to love.

      What I want you to know from my experience and from the other mothers I have met along my journey, is that you will NOT lose your child. Right now, you are mourning something that later will fade. Your kid will be there in new form and yet, the same. The same annoying habits. The same sense of humor. The same connection with you. When your child is finally fully realized, and they are truly content with the person they are…then you will be fine, right along side them!

      I know it doesn’t feel like that now. But some day- it will take months, perhaps even a couple of years- and you suddenly realize that you call your child by their new name and use the new pronouns without thinking about it. Without hesitation. You will close your eyes and only conjure the visage of your son and his smile. You will realize your child didn’t disappear as your feared. I promise you.

      • Natalie charlton May 18, 2016 at 1:43 pm #

        It’s so true that time makes it easier after a year I’m using the right pronouns and my child’s new name with ease .

      • transmom May 20, 2016 at 3:37 am #

        Look at you, Natalie!! It’s so very helpful for other moms new to our journey to hear this!! Thanks for sharing!!

    • Susan July 19, 2016 at 11:33 am #

      I feel your pain. I am going through the same exact situation right now. My daughter never showed any signs of being transgender. She had boyfriends, went to prom etc. She leaves for college 4 years ago and her whole life changed. First she was gay (which I was the last to know), then a masculine lesbian and 2 weeks ago she tells me she is transgender and wants me to accept it. I, too, love her and she keeps telling me she will be the same person but she won’t be. I feel,to my core,that she is making the biggest mistake in her life and will regret it in the future. She is going from being a masculine female to a feminine guy. Her mind set won’t change, she will still be emotional a female and have feminine characteristics. I feel like the person that I thought I knew the most has been lying to me for the past 4 years and is not the person I thought she/he was. I cannot give her my approval or support for therapy treatment. I know she is hurt and wants me to accept and understand her feelings but she has to do the same for me. She works for a non profit LGBT group and I almost think she has taken the cause so deep to heart that she feels that if she doesn’t live the life she cannot fight for it. She says she has spoken to people and therapist but I am sure that they are all positive and nobody is telling her the negative aspects or regrets. It’s hard to watch when you think it’s not the right thing for your child.

      • transmom September 10, 2016 at 4:34 am #

        Hi Susan. I can feel through your words how shocked you were at this “latest” news. Because you have seen different “iterations” in your daughter since she’s left home, I’m sure it feels that none are authentic. Especially because her choices can be very alternative to what you expected- especially given how she presented herself before leaving home. Your reaction is understandable!
        With that said, I do want to present some other thoughts that you may, or may not have considered:
        While she presented as very feminine, your daughter may have been feeling all the while, great discord emotionally…you may not have known her most personal thoughts as an adolescent/teenager. Many kids that age worry that if they articulate such to their parents, they will anger them and lose the emotional support they rely upon. They may watch how LGBTQ kids are chastised and poorly treated and fear they, too, will be ostracized. When they do finally leave home and are able to “try on” new identities, many young adults change their focus, persuasions, desires, and yes, even their genders or their sexualities. I would suggest that all young adults who go away have a natural desire to “find themselves”.
        I would encourage you to read books, essays, and blogs by transgender young adults to gain a perspective that maybe your child is unable to share with you. And during her transition, because she will have to follow her heart to live her truth even if you are not supportive, I would hope that through your pain and disappointment, you are still able to articulate to her that while these are your feelings, they do not diminish your unconditional love for her!
        The best to you!

  82. Elizabeth May 17, 2016 at 4:02 am #

    Thanks for sharing your blog and story. And to everyone who does. It’s a comfort to feel less alone in this as a mom. My mtf teenager and I have been on this journey for years now privately and i still take it one day at a time. We are at the first steps towards transitioning outside of our home. She will be attending a prom with a friend from a different school. Her first real night out in public all dressed up. It’s too many emotions to describe. I’m so afraid or confused about what to do most of the time but try to make each move from love and support. And the loss I feel is not that of losing a son but that I don’t feel like I’m truly allowed to celebrate having a daughter because of plain old fear for her safety. I want to be able to enjoy this experience like all moms do at prom. It’s just so good to hear others share their experiences. Thanks and good luck to all. I’m happy to find this site.

    • transmom May 17, 2016 at 8:36 am #

      So proud to hear your story here, Elizabeth!! You are so loving- even though you fear for her safety, you are pursuing her truth. That’s not easy for any mom to do!! And what a lucky girl your daughter is to be loved with such complete respect!! Please write us back and let us know how the prom went for both of you!!

      • Elizabeth May 17, 2016 at 8:02 pm #

        Thank you so much and I will keep in touch. Thanks again for this blog. It is such a comfort:)

      • Elizabeth May 22, 2016 at 2:34 pm #

        Prom went great! It was a special day for all of us. My child looked so beautiful and happy. So worth the fear and pain to have that moment:) love to all the mothers out there who are on this journey with our kids

      • transmom May 24, 2016 at 1:05 am #

        FABULOUS NEWS, Elizabeth!! Thanks for sharing! You lifted my spirits!! Happy: check! Healthy: check! YES!!

  83. Tracey Scarborough May 27, 2016 at 10:04 am #

    My son is ftm transgender. I knew before he did something wasn’t right. He is 27 and started his transission about 5 years ago. He will not talk to me about it at all. He gets really offended if I ask anything. The only thing he’s ask is what I would have named him if he’d been born male. I fully support him! He’s told his story more to friends than me. Any advice on what I should do? Is this common? Thank you.

    • transmom May 29, 2016 at 3:31 am #

      Hi Tracey! This was also my experience when my husband and I attended a support group and also here writing with moms online. It seems like it’s way more common for adult transgender children to desire to keep their transitioning private. Younger kids, however, rely on their parents to transition successfully. I’m thinking that after a long, and probably painful struggle, it must feel very compromising to have to open yourself up and become so vulnerable as to discuss personal thoughts and details! I think our children want to choose who they are vulnerable with. Perhaps they worry that we will respond in a defensive way. After all, for whatever reason- whether unrecognized or discounted, we parents somehow didn’t know the degree of pain or discontent. I think sharing their stories is hard enough without being concerned with our potential reactions! Does that make sense? I know you want to know more details- I do, too!! But I would rather wait for my relationship to build with my son in a way in which he feels safest and most open.
      I love how you fully support your son!! Keep doing that and you can’t go wrong, Tracy!!!

      • bay352015K May 29, 2016 at 1:50 pm #

        I also have a ftm son who is 24. He is miserable with life. Transitioning is tough for him because he is also “stuck” with the difficulty of legal name changing, finding the money for hormones needed etc. So he looks like someone who is maybe female but could be male because he doesn’t shave his legs? Has a beautiful high cheekbone face. Would love for me to walk him through all of this but I’m not sure how much I should do for an adult child? I give him the paperwork for name changing with the court, I find names of doctors he could go to, I told him I would pay for the medicine but if he won’t go on his own then does he really want this? So I wait for maturity to set in. Even if he would just call and make the appointments I would go with him. But I don’t think I should make the calls. He is also very severely depressed and doesn’t keep all of his psychologist appointments. Or consistently take medicine. He is losing all of his friends and becoming more depressed. We are close and he knows I love him. But now I am worried. He acts more like 15 than 24. He is attending graduate school in another state in the fall so I am even more concerned now. In your case your son took the steps to do what he wanted on his own. I’d be proud of that. You also sound supportive so he couldn’t ask for more. I am sure with time he will open up to you more.

      • transmom May 30, 2016 at 9:55 pm #

        Hi bay352015K! It is soooo discouraging when our children struggle- no matter the cause! It sounds like your heart is full of worry while you continue to trying so diligently to do right by him without overstepping bounds and having his becoming too dependent! This is exactly what makes parenting an adult so freaking hard!!! UGHHHH!!

        The first thing that comes to my mind is that it may be very possible that your son is simply so paralyzed with fear and depression that-even though he desires to move forward- he cannot? If so, then maybe you can (if you haven’t already) have a serious sit-down, face-tot-face discussion about what he needs vs. what he wants. Try working out a plan together: what he is capable of doing and what he needs your strength to do. Perhaps try making a list BEFORE your discussion of all that you see involved in his moving forward: doctor appointments, court dates, etc…on a timeline so that he sees that he can actually make headway and attend school in a better state both physically and emotionally!

        My guess is that he is caught up being absolutely overwhelmed with what needs to be done to go forward under the time crunch! I know I would be!! It freaks ME out just thinking about it!! Frankly, it would make me want to regress and act like a 15 year old, too!!

        Here’s my opinion: if an open and honest conversation can lead to you making the calls and you attending the appointments with him so that he will be ready for school- then so be it!! Whatever it takes for him to be healthy and happy!!

        Hang in there and keep us posted!!

  84. Tyson's Mom May 28, 2016 at 4:32 am #

    Thanks for sharing your world! I’m a mom to a 17 yr old Trans son and I blog also. Feel free to follow me too. 🙂
    You can Like my FB page or click to my blog from there and follow that.🙂
    And my blog link is: http://hismomjourney.blogspot.com
    I see you link to some blogs from yours – would love for you to add mine. As much as I can help other parents, I want to do that. 🙂
    Take care!

    • transmom September 14, 2016 at 3:24 am #

      Thanks for your info!! Can’t wait to read!!

  85. Traci June 2, 2016 at 1:17 am #

    I believe our 7 year old son is transgender. He has loved all that is pink and glittery from the age of 2. That year he was Dorothy for Halloween. 🙂 Since then, we’ve not allowed “girl costumes” outside of the home.
    I just don’t want life to be harder for him. Honestly, I was hoping it was a phase. But….it’s clearly not. He has expressed wanting to be a girl. We allowed him to buy clothes from the girl section this summer and he was over the moon happy. 🙂
    I just need guidance here. I love him/her so much!!! I just want my child to be happy.

    • transmom June 3, 2016 at 10:33 am #

      Hi Traci! You are obviously such a loving and insightful mother! You’re watching and allowing your child express themselves in the way that feels best and most authentic to them! I think you have been right to step into this carefully- insuring this is your son’s identity. So many parents do just as you did: wait to insure this is not just “a phase”
      However, I believe you are at that place where you do recognize that preventing your child from acknowledging who he really is- is no longer a healthy option. His knowing and being able to fully embrace himself as “her” is now critical! I believe it will be more confusing and very likely damaging to continue for him to only be able to express him/herself at home. I could not imagine leading this double life! I’m certain it would be not only be confusing, but could very easily lead to great personal shame!
      Have you sought a physician’s help ? Are you in an area that has access to gender specialists?
      I wish I could say this will be easy, Traci, but it will not. It is hard work to stand up and champion your child when others criticize and doubt. That’s why counseling and family groups to connect with are critical as you move forward! Arm yourself with books (see my reference list) and sittpinf yourself with positive folks. Keep focusing on the prize: YOU HEALTHY AND HAPPY KID!! Continue to write in- there are lots of moms here listening to help!!

      • Traci June 3, 2016 at 2:54 pm #

        Thank you for your reply Transmom! We have recently sought help from a behavioral therapist who is WONDERFUL!!! Thank you for being such a GREAT resource and sounding board for all of us! It is so reassuring to know that there is a whole community trying to do what is best for their children!!
        Today i feel like a warrior….a mother who will champion and fight and scream from mountain tops for my child. I’d be lying if i said that i felt like this everyday. There are some days that i am tired. Tired of the looks, tired of the comments, tired of the struggle….and i think “why can’t you just be “normal”? There are days when i’m embarrassed for him (because of him?) and i feel ashamed about that…but here we are.
        BUT…knowing there are other families out there in the same struggle…I will never give up on my sweet child. I will be strong when he is not. I will be his armor. I will be his mountain. I will do this for my child and I will be thankful that this sweet sensitive soul was entrusted to me.

      • transmom June 5, 2016 at 6:21 pm #

        Wow Traci! YOU’VE GOT THIS!!

        You nailed it: we feel strong and capable and then we can collapse into a puddle filled with insecurity and apprehension! But in the end, we overcome in spite of ourselves, because we KNOW the value and power that our motherhood brings to our children. IF they KNOW they are loved, appreciated, and accepted- then they can go forward. The first step begins with us!!!

        Thanks for reminding us that we are not alone and that with support (and a BIG dose of courage) we can make the difference in our children’s journey!!

  86. Seth June 5, 2016 at 3:51 pm #

    we know this is hard to accept but i want to leave it at this very simple question…

    when you first found out you were pregnant and had no idea what the sex of your child was, and wouldn’t for another 4 months, it didn’t matter. you just loved your child. you loved the idea of becoming a parent. if your child was diagnosed with cancer, you wouldn’t stop loving them or supporting them. your child isn’t dying… we’re transitioning to become our authentic selves. think of it as a rebirth. we still need your unconditional love and support no matter what our paths in our life. we still want to take care of you as you age as well because you’re our parents. why does it matter if we’re male or female or gender non-binary? we’re still your family, we’re still your friends. if you’re lying in a hospital bed or in need of a shoulder to cry on, do you think a change of gender would stop us from being there for you? no. you would be wise to stop calling us gender specific names/nicknames but aside from that, very little changes. we all will change appearance over the years (granted not as drastically as a transition). just try to digest this… it’s not as a big as you’d think.

    i hope this helps someone out there. it’s a personal journey for everyone involved. we know that.

    • transmom June 5, 2016 at 6:36 pm #

      Thank you Seth!! I love your analogy with to you (the child) supporting the sick parent (us)…of course our gender doesn’t matter at all! Our appearances and abilities change but your love for us as our children does not waver because of those changes!
      You are so right- changing names and pronouns is very little to ask/accept for us- it is YOU who are having to really cope with so much!
      I especially appreciated when you said, “..it’s a personal journey for everyone involved.” I loved when my son allowed that for me…knowing that my journey is not like his not anyone else’s validated my experience!! Thank you, Seth!!

  87. Lindsay S June 9, 2016 at 3:56 pm #

    I have been reading these posts in hopes of finding some answers, some peace. But most of what I see is that it’s all okay, and we need to just adjust. But I can’t accept that.

    A relationship between a mother and a son or daughter is built up over years of daily interactions, millions of moments, countless conversations. All of those tiny pieces create something we come to rely upon. It is a foundation. So when an adult son living 2000 miles away suddenly says “I think I’m a woman and I am starting hormones and now I DEMAND you call me “her” and by a new name.” it’s not reasonable to expect that to work. The person I know is my son…a sweet boy, born a preemie, whom I agonized over during surgeries as a infant, cheered on in school and in boy scouts and science fairs, offered encouragement to during first dates, proms and break-ups. I have been there to help him with social skills (Aspergers) and social anxiety. He is my son, my first born…that is the only person I know him as. I also have two daughters…our relationships as a mother and daughter were built over years, too.

    One of my daughters graduated from high school last week. My son, who has started hormones (with ZERO counseling for his anxiety or depression, ZERO medical testing for other issues that could be affecting his health, which is truly horrifying and should be malpractice, in my opinion) came with his dad, my ex-. Because my very conservative dad was also coming, my son agreed to dress neutrally. But he threw a fit at his sister’s graduation when she asked him to sign her memory book by the name she knows him as. She just wanted ONE LAST TIME with her beloved brother. He flat out refused and said he just wouldn’t sign it.

    Whatever the drugs this quack doctor is giving him, he looks very ill. Pasty, pale, puffy, weak, with sunken eyes. He is dealing with even more depression and anxiety, something that he was told that this process would magically cure (and was promised by transgender advocates.) His father, my ex-, has tried to be supportive, but is about to cut ties because he’s tired of being yelled at if he makes a mistake on pronouns or uses the wrong name. He is tired of middle of the night panicked calls and having to drive across town to calm down a young man who refuses to get the mental health help he really needs, instead of chemicals that appear to be killing him.

    I respect that for some of you, this is all okay, and feel that it’s up to us as parents to accept WHATEVER the kids want or demand. Maybe if would be different if I lived nearby and saw this day-to-day. And I know it would be different if there had EVER been a sign as a child or teen. But when I have lost the son I came to know for 20+ years, and love, and am supposed to 100% accept a stranger with whom I will probably never have much face time, it’s just too much for me to deal with. Parents and other family members have the right to boundaries and feelings and needs, too.

    • Carol Secord June 12, 2016 at 12:54 am #

      I completely agree with you. My daughter whom is 20+ yrs just told me 3 months ago that she transgender ftm. I cry every time I read other posts, people telling me she/he’s still my same child just in a different body. Listen to your child they say, do what’s best for them, do what will make them happy, put old wall photos in the bdrm now, no need to cry over this, be happy that they have found happiness now. Well I can’t. I want and miss my beautiful daughter. My doctor and therapists said; you need the time to mourn over your loss, it’s is a grieving period that will take time. This I agree to 100%.
      Ontario, Canada

      • transmom June 12, 2016 at 1:42 am #

        Hi Carol,
        Absolutely take your time to grieve! No one is denying that this totally sucks- it’s not what you wanted! You are disappointed and worried! But I hope you are grieving in a conscious manner- with the understanding that your grief will not change your child back into the daughter you want. Your pain and anguish- the longer you allow it to remain- will keep you from fully embracing your child for who she is: male.
        Yup, you get to cry. You get to look at her pictures and reminisce. But know the longer that you remain in that state, you aren’t enjoying and recognizing your beloved child. As hard as it is, I hope you will try to balance your moments of grief with taking time to reach out to meet your son. I found that lots of deep breathing and writing down my fears helped me move along- even if it was slowly at first!
        My best to you! Hang in there! You will get there!

    • Kelly June 12, 2016 at 12:57 am #

      Your post sounds fraught with anger and sadness and I am very sorry for all that you are feeling. I think many of those posting are farther along in their acceptance process. Honestly, I do not believe that this transition is easy for anyone but there are complicating factors. 1. If you never see a sign of it then there is much more shock and that deepens the anxiety for the parents. I understand this as my transition has been the same. There was no sign that I saw that told me my daughter was actually my son. 2. If your child doesnt recognize that you are also transitioning then their will be no room for you to process your feelings and make the necessary adjustments. It sounds as though your new daughter expects all of you to change immediately with no room for the habits. I still use the wrong name and pronoun and it has been a month since I decided that I should make the change. 3. Distance is a big factor. If you cannot see the woman it is hard to get to know and love her and to replace your image of your child. 4. The depression needs to be addressed and if your daughter is not willing to do so it will continue to be a problem for all of you. You know that. Now your child needs to realize it.

      Give yourself room to grieve and room to be angry. But also realize it is about respect and you really do not get a choice in the matter so you will probably want to find a way to accept it.

      I am here if you ever want to talk.

      • transmom June 12, 2016 at 1:47 am #

        Kelly- thanks for also responding to Carol!…I totally agree with you- there are so many factors that really make it difficult for Carol: distance, depression, the unexpected disclosure, and her child’s demanding expectations!
        I’m hoping knowing that we moms understand and support her will be of assistance to Carol!

      • Lindsay S June 13, 2016 at 5:01 pm #


        Thank you for your reply. I understand that this is not a walk in the park for my child. FAR from it!!! No parent who loves their kids as much as I do wants any of them to hurt, and I do recognize real pain.

        But when did we get to a place where one person who claims to be an adult is allowed, heck even cheered on, for completely toppling a family? There have been so many things I would have liked to do as an adult, from chucking it all and running away to Paris forever, to quitting a job I despised and starting over in a whole new field at a beginner’s pay or taking our savings and holing up somewhere to write a novel.

        But I could not because I had my kids and the rest of family to consider. I was not being a martyr, I was just considering the good of the family as a whole. Would I have been happier and more authentically myself if I had done some of those things? Possibly. It certainly felt like I would have been at the time. But it would have hurt too many people I love, so I did not act. And I am not sorry, because I treasure my family.

        I am concerned that the transgender advocacy community is saying just the opposite. Only YOU matter. Only YOUR feelings matter. Screw your family. They can get on board or you should dump them. Never mind what it does to your parents. Or your partner. Or your children. Don’t give it a thought. It’s 100% about you and what you want. Is that really the kind of attitude we want to encourage? Too me, it’s making being selfish and self-centered and insensitive a virtue.

        Please understand, I am not saying I want people to be unhappy with their lives. I am not discounting anyone’s feelings. Quite to the contrary.

        I really do believe we need to be saying that it’s about MORE than just one person. It’s never okay to saying only MY feelings matter and anyone who doesn’t agree is a bigot, a bad parent, a bad child, a bad friend or whatever. It needs to be okay for a parent to say they’re in mourning, and have that respected as a real feeling that may or may not go away.

        It needs to be okay to say “I think that more often that we are now willing (allowed) to admit, this really is a mental health issue” and get support from the medical community for that possibility, too. Because sometimes it is a genuine “mistake of birth” and sometimes it is no different from the person who really and truly believes he is Jesus or she is sure she is Marie Antoinette. But we’re not allowed to even suggest the latter.

        It’s needs to be okay to say “It’s not just about you, and you have to carefully weigh the impact of what you do on your family.” Right now, I feel like no serious doubts or questioning or looking into other causes for these obviously strong and usually painful feelings is allowed. And that’s terribly sad. I for one do not want more “Me, me, me” selfishness praised and rewarded in this world.

      • transmom June 14, 2016 at 8:01 am #

        I appreciate your thoughtful words, Lindsay! I am struck by how complex each individual is- and how different each story can be. I know it may appear that there is a blanket, “Go for it!” cry from supporters…but I think, those too, come from well intentioned folks.

        FAR TOO MANY of our children are NOT supported by families as they search to claim their identities that are different from their birth’s. FAR TOO MANY of our transgender children are ostracized and demeaned. Yes, we need to walk alongside them and insure they are getting the care they need…that they have support -with reason!! But ultimately, our kids will need to make this call.

        After walking through this journey supporting my son, I COMPLETELY believe that this journey is MUCH too treacherous, painful and formidable for our children to attempt unless it truly is their calling! Perhaps if we only were willing to listen to them earlier it wouldn’t seem so sudden, so extreme now?

      • Denise June 14, 2016 at 8:57 am #

        It’s been 2 years now for me and I’m no more willing to “embrace the journey” than I was when this whole bizarre thing came out of nowhere from my son when he went to Berkeley (berserkley)

        He was an Eagle Scout, valedictorian, science fair sweepstakes winner 2 years in a row. I scrimped and saved to support his expensive education. One summer he went to Stanfortd to take a $5000 class in quantum mechanics. It was a sacrifice financially for the whole family.

        The thanks I get as a mother is no communication now, blocked from his cellphone, blocked with never a response and the only communication is a postcard 3 weeks after Mothet’s Day with a message in Kanji ( yes, Japanese which I don’t read or speak). The Asian culture is beautiful and I respect it, but no one in our family is Japanese and he’s a blue-eyed, blonde male who’s acting like an adolescent Japanese girl.

        This is delusional by definition!

      • transmom June 20, 2016 at 1:35 am #

        Wow, Denise-I am sorry your journey continues to be so painful for you and your family!
        Your child has done a complete shift in the direction he was once headed with you by his side. She is now someone whose behavior you do not recognize. There are reasons- all behavior has them- but those elude you as he continues to choose to be estranged. Our collective hearts go out to you!
        This is not a typical senario, but it IS your reality. I encourage you to seek support and never lose hope for understanding- perhaps those messages in Kanji will increase and become translated!!

      • Lindsay S June 21, 2016 at 3:39 pm #

        Denise, I am so sorry! Sometimes the journey is legitimate, and sometimes it is a manifestation of mental illness. I only wish we could get support for both sides of the coin, and get the kids/young adults who are battling real illness the help they need instead of knee-jerk responses about how we have to accept it. There IS a difference. My son is also ill….and while I follow this board to try and learn how to best approach my child, I see that there is a wide spectrum of situations, from a healthy recognition of something very real (and the critical family support needed for that difficult journey) to genuine problems that need professional mental health care. Can someone please answer….why are we now so terrified of admitting that there are cases where this is a manifestation of true illness? And where is the help and support for loving, aware, non-judgemental parents who just want their kids to be well?

      • transmom June 25, 2016 at 5:13 am #

        I agree, Lindsay- there definitely ARE cases when there are obviously other issues that cause very involved and confusing situations- ones that appear on the surface to be more than just an issue of transgender alone- but I am no physician nor a psychologist. I believe ANY and ALL families facing such identity challenges need to seek out both medical and psychological support!!

    • transmom June 12, 2016 at 1:31 am #

      Dear Lindsay,
      I hope that within the notes published here, the comments and concern shared, there exists the constant message of, “Your experience is your own. You get to have your own process.” By NO means is there a blanket statement that becoming trans is the panacea for every child that struggles with identity!!
      We have heard from many mothers of older children with co-morbid conditions (other diagnoses that simultaneously occur) that make identifying a teen or young adult especially difficult as being transgender! If a child ALREADY evidences other issues, we as parents should try our best to help our children by helping them seek the medical / psychological support they require to determine if this is truly their direction.
      We have also heard many moms complain of children”demanding” their families use their new name or pronouns. We understand for many transgender folks this is the most identifiable “proof” that you are honoring their decision. At the same time, I always encourage moms to communicate with their child that this is REALLY difficult and as they mean to honor their child’s process, to please allow them the same respect- time!
      All of this is a process- for every single person involved. Yes, on one hand, it seems unreasonable that your son could not sign his former name for his sister- it’s just a signature, right? But possibly for him, he’s already past that; he’s looking for real-time acceptance for who he is now. It may be possible that asking him to sign his former name feels like a denial of who he is.
      I agree that you have an absolute right to your feelings and a need to have boundaries so that what you are giving your child is authentic support. Somethings he may want; you may not be able to do. Be honest about where you are in your process and try to communicate about what is realistic for him to accept right now. This can decrease disappointed or angry.
      Unfortunately, when you are dealing with a young adult that struggles with Asperger’s, that alone is a tall order! His ability to understand your point of view and have any empathy for your feelings is GREATLY compromised!! Please know this is not typical of what many parents of transgender kids are faced with- most kids are blessed with the ability to more readily understand that we each have our process and that we need time and patience to step up to this huge change in them!
      I encourage you to get counseling-yours is not an easy task and being that your son has Asperger’s, your son may respond to ore positively from an outside source of authority and guidance.
      Yours is not an easy road- but throughout your message, I can hear of your devotion and concern. That is why he keeps coming to you for support: he knows you love him and continues to want your love and acceptance! The best to you!

      • bay352015 June 12, 2016 at 2:43 am #

        I understand completely what you are feeling. I am also concerned about my ftm young adult who is depressed, ridden with anxiety, has moments of unresolved mental health issues, getting hormones that only seem to be making him feel worse. I think I could actually really get behind him and be a strong advocate if I felt that this process was helping him become a happier, independent, confident person. The family accepts and uses the pronouns he wants and the new name. But he gets really upset if I suggest therapy for the depression. But YES I miss my daughter so very much. It is like a death. Yes, they are still here but they are different. It is hard dealing with depression. It takes a strong caregiver and it must be hell for them. I tried very hard to suppress any feelings of disappointment hoping for a happier adult child. I can suggest and get the names of psychologist and therapist but you can’t force a twenty something to actually follow you to the office. Even when we do go there isn’t any follow through. I know in the past much therapy was required before hormones were prescribed. That is not the case anymore. I can see both sides of this and think maybe a happy balance would have been a better option. I wish the best to both of you and try to focus on things that make you happy. Keep loving and smiling. Life is just to short to let this get the best of you. I do know that my son loves me. That I see short lived moments of growth and I hope to see more as time goes by for the both of us.

      • transmom June 14, 2016 at 7:40 am #

        It’s good to hear from you, bay352015! You are so right, having to parent a struggling twenty-something is no easy task! It sounds like you are managing to find balance in love for your son while also taking care of your own mental health! Good for you! We can all learn from you!

      • Lindsay S June 14, 2016 at 5:41 pm #

        Thank you, bay352105. Yes, a happy medium would have been wiser, I think. The pendulum swings have been too broad, and hopefully will correct at some point. All the best to you and your child — it sounds like a difficult time for you both.

      • Lindsay S June 13, 2016 at 5:19 pm #

        Thank you for your kind and thoughtful reply. I have no idea what to do next, and given the reality of distance (which due to job obligations on both sides will not change in the foreseeable future), it’s unlikely that we will see one another face to face for an extended period of time ever again. And now what would have been fun, long weekend visits or those “let’s all meet at Grandpa’s for Thanksgiving” would be awkward or impossible (my dad will never see his grandson again, and that’s so heartbreaking for reasons I will not go into.)

        But thank you for your caring, and for providing a forum. My access to counseling is very limited (cruddy insurance), and the local “support groups” were all focused on how wonderful it is and why no other reaction is okay. No room for pain or doubts or heaven forbid, suggesting that in SOME cases, it is an expression of a mental illness. I will continue to read and see what I can learn from you and the other parents on here.

      • transmom June 14, 2016 at 8:05 am #

        The distance thing can be EXCRUCIATING, Lindsay…I have heard from a lot of moms here in similar circumstances- I, too, was like you- watching this unfold 1,000’s of miles away. Torturous. Four years ago I was searching in one of our countries largest cities for support and coming up empty-handed. Keep on keeping on, Lindsay! You are a warrior mother continuing her fight!

  88. Gayle Stegall June 13, 2016 at 4:57 am #

    My 22 year old son just told his father and I that he is non binary transgender. I feel comfortable with that, but am having a really hard time accepting his name change and his wish to use they/them as pronouns to address him by. I thought I was a very accepting person, but this makes my emotions feel like a roller coaster. I want to support him, but I feel so conflicted.

    • transmom June 14, 2016 at 7:45 am #

      HI Gayle! I have to admit, I also struggle with the them/them pronouns. Is it my age and that no one else in my lide circle use those? Am I being ridgid and judgy?! I kind of want to say, “Just pick a gender already!” But then I sigh at my lack of grace and realize, I am not one to judge at all. What the hell! It’s a pronoun for crying out loud and I just need to get over myself! But….hee hee- this ISN’T easy, Gayle- it’s new and uncomfortable and we need some time…to practice, to let it fall off our tongue, to learn how to think differently. I’m right there with you, Momma- this is different if nothing else!

  89. Rose June 13, 2016 at 8:23 am #

    My middle school child is coming out as transgender (mtf) and I’m supportive of him but frightened for him…he’s announcing to his peers on his own …
    I would like to find a support group for myself …any suggestions?

    • transmom June 14, 2016 at 7:49 am #

      HI Rose! Look at you! Already using the right pronoun and reaching out! Go Mom!! We are collectively proud of how you are stepping up!! I would try first doing searches in your immediate and surrounding areas for a LBGTQ centers, PFLAG groups, doctors/therapists that accpet transgender patients. Ask and dig!! there are like-minded folks out there dying to meet and hold hands! Don’t give up!! Good luck!

    • Tyson's Mom June 14, 2016 at 10:36 am #

      Hi Rose –
      As TransMom mentioned, Google for PFLAG resources.
      Also, are you on Facebook? There are a few online support groups that are full of parents at different points in their journey with their kids. These groups offer places to be open, honest and raw with your feelings and get support from parents who are in the same exact position as you.

      Parents of Transgender Children:

      Once you are in that group, ask about specific subgroups (there are groups for moms of teen Trans sons, for example).

      My FTM son came out to me at 13 and is now 17 (almost 18). It was very rough in the beginning, I was so confused and praying every day for God to fix my kid. For months.

      To find groups of moms who can relate to me was wonderful. I spent hours and hours reading the posts initially. And then after a few months, honestly, had to stop reading as I got overwhelmed again. But then I went back to the group again.

      We all process differently and at different paces.

      Is also suggest getting a therapist for YOU. even if it’s just once a month. You need to take care of YOUR emotional well being also.

      Take care and good luck!🙂

      • transmom June 20, 2016 at 1:15 am #

        Thanks, Tyson’s mom- another great resource!!!

      • Tyson's Mom June 20, 2016 at 1:33 am #


  90. Leslie June 14, 2016 at 1:11 am #

    I just discovered that my gay daughter would like to be the boy she believes she is. I don’t doubt her and we’re making plans to speak to a professional about it, but I’m dying. I cried so hard on the way home from work today, I had to pull over. How do tell her aunts – my sisters – how do I tell friends, neighbors, coworkers… people we’ve known all her life. I’m trying, I’m really trying. I feel so lost.

    • transmom June 14, 2016 at 8:15 am #

      It absolutely CAN feel overwhelming, Leslie! Please know that you are NOT alone!!
      I think I always knew in my head…and even after years of accepting my kid as “gay” in my head (looking for labels to attach seemed to calm me those early years even though I was the one assigning those labels)…when the news hit- it hit HARD!!! I cried A LOT!! I had the same worries as you….but you know what? Love prevails!! It absolutely does!!
      It is so scary starting this journey because we don’t know shit and we fear everything. It’s gonna be okay, Leslie…you will lay the path for those that your daughter/son is willing to share this journey with. People will accept it because you will show them how! You will be able to say, “Wow, I’m as blown away as you are, but you know, right now it’s not about us: ____ needs our love and support! You’ll step for us, right?”
      Good friends and family won’t deny you. The people that really matter will remain next to you.
      Be honest. Be patient. Allow people their time and their process. This is gonna be okay! MORE than okay, Leslie!

  91. Diana Campbell June 16, 2016 at 1:56 am #

    My daughter who is 25 came out to me about a year ago to me that he is a transgender male. It’s on my mind alot. On the surface I try to be supportive and use all the right pronouns. I love my child no matter what but I mourn the loss of my daughter. I never saw anything masculine about him as a child or teen. At one point he was even considering being a make-up artist. I just need some help understanding and dealing with this.

    • transmom June 20, 2016 at 1:25 am #

      Hi Diana! I think it is especially difficult for mothers like you that are taken by surprise – no- more like, shocked!- when their child shares a change in their identity! Most of us do see signs along the way- it’s more about us getting on board with the reality.
      I know you are not alone…for some, this is such a secret-held so closely that even mothers are unaware. Imagine the pain that holding this must cause our children!!
      My son also was interested in female-traditional roles for a time. Nowadays, there are very few such occupations….go into any department store and a number of the cosmetic sales persons are male. So many of the film and TV industry make up artists are male.
      No matter the choice of occupation, the choice of sexual partner, the choice of name or even pronouns to associate with…our children’s identities are their own. New and improved or long in the making…our children remain ours!

  92. Lindsay S June 22, 2016 at 7:08 pm #

    Help! My son, who has the issues I talked about above, is now saying that he is going to quit his job so he can get Medicaid for reassignment surgery. He will be homeless. He will lose his apartment, his car, his access to food. Everything. I am beside myself. He has been taking those poisonous hormones for only a few months, and now this. He says I have no say, and he will not talk with me. I am on the verge of calling for a 72 hold for a psych evaluation. I don’t know what else to do. This is suicide.

    • transmom June 25, 2016 at 5:18 am #

      Wow, Lindsay, I do not know what to suggest! Being a mother of an adult that will not hear or value your concerns nor advice puts you in an incredibly frustrating and frightening position! He sounds so desperate to be willing to put himself in such financial jeopardy! We hope you will both find some peace somehow!

  93. Denise June 25, 2016 at 8:33 am #

    Lindsay, I feel your pain. The sad thing is that no psychiatric professional will touch it with a 10 foot pole because transsexualism became politicized when they put the T in the LBG.
    I’m sorry, but my son changed and went bat$hit crazy when he started taking female hormones. It increased his gender dysphoria and he became mean, gave up his aspirations for a Ph.D. (Something he had ALWAYS planned on without question) and he alienated himself from his family.
    He has a great job with Google as a software engineer, but Google pays for Sex change operations. I am begging him not to mutilate his body and I cry myself to sleep every night if I can even sleep at all.

  94. Laura jenkinson June 30, 2016 at 7:03 pm #

    Hi I am after a little advice/support. My brother has came out as transgender, he is almost 40. I am totally accepting and will love her no matter what but my mother won’t accept it. She won’t talk about it, our father doesn’t even know, she is in total denial. I feel torn… I don’t know what to do… This has been going on two year now. I don’t know what to do. Any advice I would love. Thanks.

    • bay352015 July 13, 2016 at 12:17 am #

      It’s great your brother has you. I would leave your mother to be your sister’s concern. If she wants to have total acceptance then she needs to foster that with your mom. If perhaps she thinks she can live with having your mom deal with things in her own way (denial but still being in her life as her mom) then that is an option. Not everyone will react in the way that makes her happy. As long as there is respect and patience on both sides it will work out someday. It would be extremely difficult for a mother of a forty year old to be immediately accepting of this transition. But does it even have to be an issue? As long as your 40 year old sister lives on her own, makes her own income, has her own life? Perhaps giving mom a little peace is for the best. All I ever want for my children is for them to be happily independent. They do not need to make me happy but I’d love for them to be. I read an article once where the grandmother’s advice to her adult children was “May you find enough in this world”. Contentment and a life that brings one enough of what they need for happiness. It is in my opinion that you may be her family member to lean on. That mom and dad can maybe just live in peaceful bliss knowing that things seem to be going well for their adult children. Just one thought…

      • transmom September 10, 2016 at 4:01 am #

        So well articulated, Bay352015!! Thank you!

  95. Andrea July 2, 2016 at 2:09 pm #

    Please help me to accept and understand the shock of learning that my 33year old son has just been diagnosed with Gender Disphoria. He is ex military and the last person I would ever expect to hear this news from.

    • Kelly August 23, 2016 at 7:30 pm #

      Apparently there is an extremely high population of military veterans who are transgender. My ftm son works with a gender identity therapist who told us that 70 percent of his patients are vets and that this group has the highest rate of people with gender dysphoria. I was surprised but thought this knowledge might help you Andrea.

      • transmom September 7, 2016 at 7:03 pm #

        Wow, Kelly, I had never heard this statistic before! I’m wondering if it has to do with laws changing and insurance being covered in some instances? I’m wondering if folks forced themselves into a rigid and demanding culture in an effort to try to force themselves to accept the genders they were assigned at birth? I would love to hear more information! Thanks!

    • Natalie August 23, 2016 at 7:41 pm #

      Be patient with your self,read books on transgender ,it’s still the same person you love ,no one chooses to be this way and in time you will accept he needs to be his true self .

      • transmom September 7, 2016 at 11:40 pm #

        I agree, Natalie!! Acceptance is KEY!!

    • bay352015 August 28, 2016 at 2:28 am #

      Hello Andrea,
      I have a female to male child who shocked me with this news. I can’t say I will ever be happy for this change but he is an adult (25) and will have to live with the choices he makes. It will always be difficult for me but I can say that the “happier and more content he seems with life” the better i feel. Because when it comes down to it as parents what more do we want for our children than for them to be happy and content in life. Sometimes I wonder if anyone really is but if this change makes his life a little better I say that is great! This took me many years to reach this level of understanding and it is still a struggle for me. He told me about it when he was 17 and I wouldn’t even listen. I felt the internet had influenced and destroyed his common sense. So yes it was an uphill battle so to speak. There are people I am afraid to tell. I never put anything about him on Facebook, but I open my arms for the largest and happiest hug of my life when I see him. Right now he is in graduate school and very happy. So life goes on as it will for you. I found it easier to put it in their “court” so to speak but to be here for the hugs and acceptance. You can still be you (we deserve that also, right?) and you can still accept as you best possibly can for this stage in your life. Do I secretly hope he will turn it around and be female again? Yes you bet I do. But I keep that to myself.

      • transmom September 7, 2016 at 11:38 pm #

        Dear “bay352015”,
        Thanks so much for sharing your feelings and experiences with our readers, especially, Andrea! I know that your experience will ring true for many! I agree with you: “if this change makes …life a little better I say that is great!”!!

  96. Natalie Charlton July 4, 2016 at 12:02 pm #

    I feel I need to tell noughbours and family since my ftm teenafer has changed his name as this seems more definite ,its difficult as his sister who is 13 is finding it difficult to tell her friends ive chatted to her and asked what she s afraid of but ahe wont tell me .

    • transmom September 9, 2016 at 4:22 am #

      Hi Natalie! Any of us struggle with who we are and seek for acceptance – ESPECIALLY when we are adolescents!! Therefore, I can understand Your 13 year old’s reluctance to tell her friends and even share her own feelings with you concerning her sibling’s transition! Perhaps she worries that if she shares that she “hates that her sister is transitioning” that you will think less of her. Have you tried just sharing how hard this journey is for you? what you worry about? Even if that conversation is one-sided, it can be an important one. You might want to consider setting the stage by saying, “I need to talk to you and I don’t expect you to say anything unless you want to”. Just hearing that she is not alone in her struggle may help her open up at a later time. Another suggestion is for her (now) brother to let her know that it’s okay she’s upset- “everyone gets to have their own process”. And I always suggest, read books like “I am Jazz”…like the TV show we have here, it is a great insight to hear how this process feels from another teen!!! Good luck- this is NOT easy!!

  97. Erin July 6, 2016 at 3:09 am #

    My son is 15 and has told me for the past year that he is transgender and wants me to refer to him with the female pronouns and has grown out his hair and has started to dress in female clothes secretly. I’m trying to be supportive of this change but my husband is definitely not and I worry that some other friends and family may also be judgemental and I just don’t know how to come out with this to friends, family, coworkers. My husband does not agree at all and it has been difficult to talk to him about our son making this change. I also have 2 other children and I’m worried about the impact it will have on them. Obviously the one who is struggling the most is my son who feels like he was born the wrong gender and I just want some advice on how to support him in the best way that I can. Thank you! We live in AZ.

    • transmom September 9, 2016 at 4:31 am #

      Thanks for writing, Erin! What a difficult spot you are in!! You are ready and willing to tackle this REALLY hard journey and you are not being supported. I REALLY recommend that you take steps to find a therapist that is experienced in bringing a whole family together! No, you cannot force your husband to go with you, but the reality is, this train is leaving the station whether he’s on board or not…and as for your other kids, you need to be open and honest about how everyone has their process and you and their dad are in different places right now. It doesn’t mean you won’t be someday, and it doesn’t mean your love their brother any less- it’s just that this is hard. Keep stressing that unconditional love is the only answer and you are willing to stand by your son while he figures out where he’s going with this. Hang in!!

      What city are you in…I can do some research to help you find a family group. I know our group welcomed parents that were on board and others who were not as well as siblings so that they cold talk and play with others struggling with the same issues. Best of all, it was a safe space for the transgender kids to have fun and relate to others!!! I’d love for you to find a group like that!! Let me know if you’d like further help!

  98. Kristal July 15, 2016 at 8:11 pm #

    Hello! My name is Kristal. My daughter told me on Mother’s Day of this year that she wants to be a boy. I was shocked and still am, but also confused open minded. I have been of course struggling with this. I also have been reading a couple of books and websites. What I have not said is that she seventeen. She has transitioning. But one of the difficult things of the situation is that she lives in a different state that I so. I love her (him) very much and want to know everything about what she has been feeling and going through. Thank you for reading.

    • transmom September 10, 2016 at 4:13 am #

      Kristal, I hope this finds you and your son doing well! I can identify with your struggle: having a child that lives out of state go through transition can be REALLY painful! Has he been willing to remain in contact? How is he doing? And, how are you?!!!!!

  99. Sarah Turner July 19, 2016 at 8:24 pm #

    Hi I’m very scared to tell my husband that are 24 year old son has told me he wants to be a woman sorry for not using all the right terms as I don’t now them. I am fully behind my son ready to support him 100%. But its all new to me and I’m kinda freaking out. I have known my son was gay for years and have wondered if he wanted to be a woman. But know its here and I don’t now how to tell the rest of my family. Any ideas or help please

  100. Kristal July 20, 2016 at 10:37 pm #

    I am a mom of a seventeen year old gym person. She lives with her dad in another state. She also told me that “she” wants to or is a boy on Mother’s Day this year. And ever since then I have been struggling with it. I have been confused and shocked. But also have been trying to be as open minded as I can be…

  101. Kay July 23, 2016 at 6:37 am #

    My son told me this evening that he is Transgender. He is married with a newborn. He has been in counseling for 4 months and starts hormone therapy soon. I love my son so very much. I don’t know how to support him, or how to deal with all my feelings and questions. Will my son no longer be “my son”? He will still be my child, forever be my child, but I find that I am grieving the loss of my son as I have always known him to be, plus I am a bit in shock. I worry most about how he may be shunned by society and even family. I hear about transgender people being targets in society, and I worry about his safety. I don’t know how to navigate this, or how to support him best. Is there any support groups in the Seattle are?

  102. Sonia August 2, 2016 at 4:57 am #

    I love my son and want to understand better. I also respect him but feel like a failure when i misgender him because i wasn’t focused.

    I look forward to encouragement from your blog.

    Thank you.

  103. Tracy L Grapes August 10, 2016 at 9:07 am #

    Looking for some answers to help my adult child to function in life and be happy…..

    • transmom September 7, 2016 at 6:20 pm #

      We all worry about our adult children! It is perhaps a mother’s greatest desire to see her child able to live a happy, successful, and fulfilling life! The real “answers” lie with you adult child…consider regularly giving your reassurance and encouragement while you offer acceptance and support emotionally. Help them brainstorm “next steps”. Sometimes having a plan is the best way to take those steps forward!!!

  104. janymac August 11, 2016 at 1:31 pm #

    I am from UK and have found myself in the same situation. I went to pick him up from university and before he even told me he had passed all his exams and had was technically able to graduate, he told he was transssexual, had changed his name by deed poll and was going to start HRT as soon as he could. To say it was a shock is an understatement. I have been supportive, but have my days when I feel so tearful- why does he want to mutilate his body in such a way, especially since I can’t see how being a women is that great anyway- it is quite hard n many ways in my view. What makes this worse is he is just about to embark on his his career and is planning to do this whilst establishing himself in a career abroad in Netherlands ( an ambition he has had for about 5 years that I did know about already). That is a a hard enough start to anyone’s career in any measure without all the transitioning side. I am the only one he has told beyond his friends and cousins- his father doesn’t even know yet. I do not want to discuss it too much with him as he gets defensive and also if I make a big deal of it he might just stick to his guns completely even if he is wavering at all. I just feel so sad he wants to do this to himself and give himself such a hard time in life- not to mention the effect it might have on the family as a whole.

    • transmom September 7, 2016 at 6:34 pm #

      Janymac, This is a LOT to take in! I’m guessing your son feels safe with you because he was willing to open up to you. For him, this was much bigger and more important that sharing news about his exams or graduation- that can help you gage where his head is! He’s not thinking about how you might receive this information, he is desperate to blurt out his long held secret! While we as cisgender parents may not “get” how big a deal this is, believe me: this is HUGE for those who struggle with their sense of self and identity!! It is not enough to begin his 5 year planned career- he NEEDS to begin his life as the adult as he identifies. Perhaps he may have been planning this to all come together at a time when he could go away and transition? Do not worry that you will be the one that will cause him to “stick to his guns”…he is an adult and your inquiries are not that powerful. Yes, your entire family is affected: you are stunned, worried, and can’t understand the need to push this -especially now.
      Here’s the hardest part: you can share your fears (and if you do so, please remember to share an equal amount of love) and then wish him the best! Maintain your precious contact as he goes away- While the Netherlands are far more accepting a country/culture than most, this will be challenging for your beloved son! He needs to know that, no matter what, you are in his corner!!

  105. Cheryl B. Evans August 18, 2016 at 2:18 am #

    It saddens me deeply to read some of the mother’s comments above and to know of their struggles. I would love the opportunity to share a book with you that I only wish was available when my son was younger. He is transgender and now a happy well adjusted 18 year old. The book is called I Promised Not to Tell Raising a transgender child – you can learn more here: https://www.amazon.com/Promised-Not-Tell-Raising-transgender/dp/0995180717 What began as a personal journal to help me coupe with the changes happening in my own family become published for one reason only – to help other families who are going through a similar journey. The book covers every step of my son’s transition from female to male and covers things like hormone replacement therapies, sex reassignment, dating and many of the social issues that face the transgender community today. I would love to connect with anyone struggling with this issue and can be contacted on twitter@writtenbymom or through my website http://www.writtenbymom.com If the owners of this blog are reviewing this I beg you to please research my book for yourself I truly believe it could be of great benefit to your followers. I would love to help you change the stigma around transgenderism one reader at a time. God Bless you and thank you for your consideration. Warmest regards, Cheryl B. Evans.

    • transmom September 7, 2016 at 6:39 pm #

      Hi Cheryl! I ordered a copy of your book- I’m happy to read and let my readers know about it here and on Facebook. Somehow, I was not able to reach your website.
      I look forward to reading it!

      • Cheryl B. Evans September 7, 2016 at 6:43 pm #

        Thank you so much! I appreciate your support and interest in my book. I’m so sorry the reason you couldn’t find my site was because it’s .ca not .com – my mistake. Sorry about that.
        http://www.writtenbymom.ca is the correct address. Cheryl.

      • transmom September 8, 2016 at 12:54 am #

        Got it, Cheryl- I’ll check it out, too!!!!

  106. mandy carey September 3, 2016 at 3:54 pm #

    Hi my name is mandy and my 19 year old son is transgender…and I so need help. Ironically I am a psychotherapist but am no help to myself….im proud of my child and support her as much as I can but I’m lonely in this place of not knowing….
    Help! Please!

    • transmom September 8, 2016 at 12:53 am #

      Hi Mandy!! Of course your psychotherapy skills and training aren’t kicking in! This time around, you are the person in need requiring support- we alone cannot provide ourselves with that!
      -First, please do take time for yourself…know that you are not alone in that feeling of panic that we mom’s so easily succumb to when it comes to our children! I recommend writing down every little fear; release it from that dark place where it is allowed to fester : “He will never have a loving relationship.” or “Transfolks are so much more likely to end up homeless or victims of violence” or “This is NOT what I wanted for him! I will never be happy with his decision!” or “I will never be able to openly share about him again” or “My family will not understand and accept him”. There’s a whole lot we can freak out about. We gotta get that out and realize most of this is not in our control and if we can stay in touch with just the bottom line loving of our child, we can get to a MUCH less fearful place!
      -I recommend looking at him: is he freaking out? Then, I’m guessing you don’t need to either.
      -Does he have a plan of his next steps in this process? Get a plan yourself: arm yourself with sharing your feelings (here or a support group)/ READ. READ. READ./ Write down all the little ways you can remain positively connected on separate scraps of paper (text him a thumbs up; buy him a succulent and leave it on his doorstep; offer to run an errand for him; buy him a new gender item in the gender appropriate department; etc.) and choose one or two to do each week); write a disclosure letter/email and talk to your son how he would like you to go forward.
      -Read my articles here about disclosure, the resource list, and particularly my entry called: Dear Worried, Freaked-Out, Doubting, Anguished, Horrified and Loving, Wonderful Mom

      I’m sending you strength and courage, Mandy!! Hang in- the “better” is yet to come!!!

  107. Tammy September 11, 2016 at 2:09 am #

    My son is 26 and stated seeing dr of transgendering. I have very mix emotions. I want him to happy but I am sad.

    • transmom September 13, 2016 at 4:50 am #

      Of course you are sad, Tammy!! Moms all want our kids to be happy, healthy, successful…but we don’t ever picture they will have to struggle with gender identity. I think we are all lulled into this “baby euphoria” when they are born…we are so thrilled if they are born healthy that we don’t ever consider something like this down the road. For most at birth, it’s just a given! Now we are confused and saddened knowing they have to face scrutiny if not worse…we worry while all the while, our dreams for them remain the same: for them to remain happy, healthy, and successful!
      I encourage you to allow yourself to feel the range of emotions! Write them down so they are out of your head for the moment and then writ list of all the things you love about your son and all your NEW dreams for him!! Take good care of yourself! I hope that you will remain in touch with your son throughout his transition…it will be helpful to see he really isn’t going anywhere!! He’s forever your child!!

  108. susn turner September 22, 2016 at 8:09 pm #

    I have a 24 year old MTFdaughter. She began transitioning in college and has completed her BS degree. She is currently employed full time with benefits. The corporation she works for is very supportive of her. To them she is who she is and apparently they respect and admire her. We have been very supportive of her since she told us about her desire to present as a woman and provided the medical, hormones and counseling services for her. She has recently scheduled her SRS surgery. Most of the times she is a delightful person. Currently she is residing in our home for 2 months until she gets through a training program and her new assignment. Our concern is that she appears more depressed and mentions that she has “rage” issues. We recommended she see her therapist and arrange for a psychiatric evaluation to determine if she needs help sorting our these feelings. She is over 6′ tall and presents as a very beautiful, confident and happy woman in public and much of the time at home. She has maintened deep friendships, old and new, and is generally “loved” by everyone. However, we are concerned about the “depression” she seems to have when she is in our home. A place of her own would be good, but it’s difficult to set up on a 2 month transition process. Any comments would be appreciated.

    • transmom September 23, 2016 at 12:39 am #

      First of all, Susn, how wonderful for your daughter that you and her family have remained her champions and continued to support her throughout her transition! It’s also great to hear that her employers are respectful!
      I believe your offering to continue supporting her transition via a therapy eval is an excellent recommendation! You are letting her know you are concerned and are helping her to become proactive about it.

      Let’s face it…24 years old is still VERY young. Whether or not she has support, she has a whole lot on her plate to navigate as she becomes an adult…now she is in training, finds herself temporarily at home, and is awaiting major surgery! Whew!!
      I hope she is open to your suggestion…I hope she can consider that while having to deal with so very much, it would be a GIFT to have some unbiased, outside support- and maybe additional help- speaking honestly with a psychiatrist that works in tandem with a good therapist-could be the missing link!
      I am hopeful other moms reading will also weigh in!! Please let us know if you have presented this option to her and if your daughter sees open to the idea!

  109. Unconditionally4ever September 25, 2016 at 5:37 pm #

    My son, 24, just came out to me two days ago. I have never agreed with the trans lifestyle but because of my personal and religious beliefs I would never tell that to a trans person. I believe we are supposed to be kind and not hurtful to other humans regardless of whether or not we agree with them.

    In that moment that my son told me he was already in therapy and planning on starting hormones as soon as possible, none of my opinions mattered anymore. I told him I love him and that “I had his back”. I told him this changes nothing between us.

    Then I got off the phone and cried alone. Haven’t slept since he told me, having panic attacks. I think what’s scaring me most is that I don’t want anyone to hurt him. I’m terrified someone will hurt him. (he told me he isn’t ready to change pronouns yet, so still calling him, him)

    I need to contain my grief, anxieties and fears. I refuse to let him know that this is keeping me up nights in tears. I want him to only feel supported as he moves forward down this extremely difficult path.

    Any advice? Does this get better? Am I always going to be afraid for his safety? I keep thinking that because he’s 24, already went through puberty, large build, over 6ft tall etc, he will never “pass”. I feel like people will treat him worse if he can’t “pass”.

    I can’t say any of this to him. It would hurt him. His girlfriend told me he was so absolutely happy after he came out to me. She said it was such a huge weight off his shoulders. I need to figure out how to deal with my issues while not letting them affect my son.

    Any and all thoughts welcome!

    • bay352015 September 26, 2016 at 3:41 am #

      Dear Unconditionally,

      Yes, it will get better for you! She may end up hurt by others at one time or another but most young adults experience this pain regardless of gender. My son who is FTM is also 24. Does not always pass as male and is in a university setting in graduate school. He endures strange looks, people not wanting to sit by him and all kinds of prejudice. I feel much hurt for him but I also feel so much pride in his decision to be true to how he felt. The people who become friends are the kind that are real and steadfast. You mentioned your son has a supportive girlfriend. That’s a big help. My fear is that my son will have a difficult time finding someone to share life with. You have so much love and compassion and responded to his “news” in such a brave and supportive, loving way. I’m afraid I didn’t do very well in this department and had to do much in the line of back tracking and damage control,to my youngest child. I am lucky that he is such a loving child. I was forgiven and I can only hope that I never cause anymore mental anguish as I had when he first tried hard to discuss this with me. I just couldn’t accept it and didn’t hide these feelings. What you can do now is stay focused on your own life and pursue things that bring you joy. Be happy and in time you will be uplifted with the good things that your child shares with you. Life will bring changes but they won’t seem “strange” or difficult to lean into. They will always be who they are. Just changed appearances. I feel that if I still have those arms wrapped around me in a hug once in awhile that I have the world.

      • transmom September 30, 2016 at 3:26 am #

        Thanks so very much bay352015!! “They will always be who they are”…our parents who are new to this journey will be grateful to hear this reassurance from you!!

      • Unconditionally4ever September 30, 2016 at 5:18 am #

        “I feel that if I still have those arms wrapped around me in a hug once in awhile that I have the world.”

        That’s what it all comes down to isn’t it? Beautifully put. I really don’t think anyone can understand this fully if they haven’t experienced it firsthand. But in the end, regardless of what anyone has to say about us (parents) or our kids, we just want them happy and alive (figuratively AND literally).

        I’m praying for strength for all of us to give our kids what they need most from us. Unconditional love and support in whatever they may face in this life.

        God bless you all and thank you for your post.

  110. Natalie October 7, 2016 at 8:43 pm #

    This is so true and it gives me strength as a mother of a 17 year old ftm ,such lovely words

  111. Notsurewhattodo October 9, 2016 at 10:46 pm #

    My daughter came out to us as trans about 6 weeks ago. We have always known she was bi and she has a boyfriend who is also bi. None of this is an issue with us. Anyway she has said she will transition and plans to start hormones and expects to be called by her new name and change the pronouns. Only i can’t do that. If she feels this is the answer I want her to do it and be happy but I do not feel that I can ever call her my son. She is my daughter and it is making me very upset that I have to completely forget her childhood. I will not remove my child’s entire life history from my home this is my life and my memories. It isn’t fair that I am told I have to forget all of it. We have a younger child who we plan to tell today and frankly I just don’t know how this child will handle it. My daughter has not been very nice to us for some years after an abusive failed marriage that we rescued her from and our younger child very much believes she doesn’t like any of us. I fear this is going to be a disaster. I just don’t know what to do and I don’t really want to join a support group either just so others can tell me I am not justified and should just do what my child says. Just yesterday I was told in no uncertain terms I will be disowned based on who i am voting for for president! God i am so frustrated and I just don’t know what to do!

    • transmom October 11, 2016 at 7:08 pm #

      Dear Notsurewhat to do,
      I can hear your voice through your words! You sound terribly conflicted and attacked all at once for your beliefs and what you value! You don’t deserve to feel this way. You obviously love your child and have supported (even rescued!) your daughter in the past. I hear it is your intent to continue to love her, regardless.
      Perhaps you can begin there. Is it possible to tell her (just you and she, face-to-face) how you love her but are REALLY struggling with her decision? Perhaps if you are able to express that this is not about your love for her, that it is, instead, about the conflict that arises for you. Perhaps then, you will be met with more patience and understanding.
      I am hopeful that, just as you opened your heart to hearing of her sexual orientation (bisexuality), you will also take time to understand that hers is a decision of IDENTITY! If she decided to become an actress and change her name, would you refuse to acknowledge her? Of course not- it is a name. One that adults choose to change for all kinds of reasons. Your daughter’s childhood and both of your memories of that time do not disappear…in fact, they are indeed crucial to who she has become.
      I know you expect to be attacked in a support group…but I doubt that will happen…I believe that MANY parents- especially those of adult children!- struggle with the same feelings that you are experiencing! I encourage you to reach out so that you are not alone in this struggle and find others that not only empathize with your pain, but can share how they worked through similar feelings and situations!

  112. Bertha October 10, 2016 at 1:32 am #

    Hi, I will like to have full support.

  113. heather October 12, 2016 at 5:47 am #

    It’s 1:45 am and I’ve just found a note from my youngest son who is 21.
    He wrote “Mom I’m transgender I’m sorry. ” he left it on my bed.
    I am heartbroken and alone ..as he must have felt for a long time. I want to say and do all the right things but i am in shock. He has an older brother but I doubt he knows. . And his father left us when my sons were still in elementary school. Most of all I feel terrified ..I am an older mom and I want to protect my son
    ..and understand who he wants to be…
    Thanks for listening
    A mom in Canada

    • transmom October 12, 2016 at 6:10 pm #

      Dear Mom in Canada! You are already on your way- just loving and supporting your son is what he needs most!! Of course you are scared for him…although the world is becoming more and more accepting, life for our kids is incredibly challenging!! I hope by this time you have already reached out to him, reassuring him that he does NOT need to EVER apologize for who he is!! You love him and will stand next to him as he makes his way into the world, even if it is as a woman! Listen, hug, listen some more and ask what his next steps are. Lots of deep breathing for both of you….the more positive you are, the more strength he will have!!! Good luck to you both!!

  114. Dee October 12, 2016 at 3:52 pm #

    My 21yr old daughter, that’s just told me that she wants to eat my pansexual transgender 21 year old son everything about that person that I know has changed between those two sentences except for the age I don’t know where to go who did talk to what to do next I’m scared of doing it all wrong for myself my husband who is unsupportive my son who is 17 my daughter who is not my mother my family my friends and just feel like I’m in a Hole by myself I want to do what’s right for everybody but quite honestly I haven’t even begun to mourn the loss of my daughter I just don’t know where to turn next

  115. Helen October 12, 2016 at 9:25 pm #

    I’m so happy to have found this site. My 14year old daughter just told me today that she’s transgender. I’m not ready to accept this, but I did tell her I love her no matter what. I’m hoping to survive this. My husband won’t tolerate it, I know. He doesn’t know yet. But I know we’ll lose him when he finds out, and I’m not ready for that, either. Any advice and help you can offer is welcome. I’m praying it’s not real. And please forgive me for making this about me right now. I know it’s a lot for her, too, but her friends know and support her and she has online community support. Right now I feel very confused, scared, angry, and alone.

    • transmom October 14, 2016 at 4:56 am #

      Helen, you are doing well with- what can be for most of us- overwhelming news! Most importantly, you have told your daughter that you love her unconditionally. She will be able to hold onto your critical support as she faces the challenges ahead with her father!
      I so understand your hope that “it’s not real”. This can be such scary news when you do not know where to begin and when you anticipate “fall out”. However, I caution you to try to put such hope aside…this is rarely “a phase” and being able to consider it “real” will ultimately help you move toward acceptance sooner. And the sooner you are able to accept your daughter’s new identity, the less conflict you will actually feel! Trust me, it only gets better!! Finding acceptance will additionally help you to become proactive for your daughter! And that is exactly what a 16 year old needs- you as her advocate!

      Since you anticipate your husband not being able to tolerate this news, perhaps consider asking your daughter to hold her disclosure to him until you have had the opportunity to seek counseling support from a professional. After which, perhaps a family counseling session would be the most productive I have also known children having success by writing a parent a heartfelt and thoughtful note that can be received at a time during which the parent can digest the news without interruption privately.

      Please know that you are NOT alone! I’m certain hundreds of parents received similar news on yesterday’s “National Out Day”. I’m guessing so many that have been hiding in fear of being rejected waited for that extra bit of support, knowing they were not alone on that day having to risk so very much!

      The best to you…please keep us posted! HUGS!

    • Tyson's Mom October 14, 2016 at 12:17 pm #

      Hi Helen,

      I’m so glad you found this blog and have reached out for support.🙂
      Please know you are definitely not alone. There are thousands of parents like you – and many where the parents disagree on what to do.

      Are you on Facebook? There are a few online support groups that are full of parents at different points in their journey with their kids. These groups offer places to be open, honest and raw with your feelings and get support from parents who are in the same exact position as you.

      Parents of Transgender Children:

      Once you are in that group, ask about specific subgroups (there are groups for moms of teen Trans sons, for example). I’m in the mom’s of trans teen sons and it’s wonderful. There are other moms there whose husbands did not agree and those ladies can share what they did and how they are handling it. The prospect of a marriage ending over something like this is obviously devestating. Nobody wants to ever chose between child and spouse. 😦

      My FTM son came out to me at 13 and is now 17 (18 in 2 months). It was very rough in the beginning, I was so confused and praying every day for God to fix my kid. For months and months.

      To find groups of moms who can relate to me was wonderful. I spent hours and hours reading the posts initially. And then after a few months, honestly, had to stop reading as I got overwhelmed again. But then I went back to the group again.

      We all process differently and at different paces.

      Is also suggest getting a therapist for YOU. even if it’s just once a month. You need to take care of YOUR emotional well being also.

      I also have a blog where I’ve sort of journaled my experience: http://hismomjourney.blogspot.com

      Take care and good luck!🙂

      • transmom October 14, 2016 at 8:19 pm #

        Thanks for reaching out, Christy!! The more support we can provide each other- the BETTER!!!

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