“Someone else on the earth who is like me”

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Last week I told M. that I had arranged for her to have a play date with N.  I had already told her about how N. had been  living as a boy until recently, when she told her parents she was actually a girl.

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“Oh, you mean the old Lucas?” M. said.

“Yeah, the old Lucas.  But she likes to be called N. now.”

M. nodded.  She gets it.

When N. arrived with her mom on Sunday afternoon, M. was ready for her.  She’d decided that they should do “manis and pedis,” so she set up a nail salon in the living room, carefully arranging her rainbow of nail polish colors (25 of them! How did we acquire so many?) and draping a chair and a footstool with towels (“So my customer will be comfortable.”).

It took no coaxing to get N. into the chair and present her little toes.  M. helped her select her colors and set about carefully applying the polish.  The two little girls chatted and giggled and forgot all about their mothers. We sat on a couch across the room, pretending not to watch them.

nails2When the pedicure was done and dried and had been sufficiently admired by all, M. offered to show N. her toys.

They ran off and we began talking about the things we need to talk to each other about.  (“Is N.’s kindergarten teacher supportive of her new name and gender?”  Extremely!  “How about the other parents?” Mixed.) In the background, we could hear the sounds of squeals and laughter coming up the basement stairs.  After about 20 minutes, I decided to go down and check on them.

M. was running around the basement with her pants – and underpants – around her ankles, giggling. N. watched her, looking delighted.

Deep breath. “Now M., you know it’s not really polite to walk around without your clothes on when we have guests over.”

“It’s OK, Mama!  We already showed each other our butts and penises!”

N. studied me, worried.  Were they in trouble?

Oh shit.  How do I handle this one?  What would N.’s mother think?   Was this OK?  I took stock for a moment:  They’re six years old.  There’s nothing sexual going on here, Mama.  They are just two sweet little kids who are blessedly unashamed of their bodies and justifiably curious to confirm what they’ve each been told about the other:  That this is another girl like them.  Of course it’s OK.

“It’s alright to be naked around our good friends if they are OK with it.  But in general it’s not polite to just run around with no pants on, honey.”

N. smiled.

M. shrugged and pulled up her pants.  “Let’s play with my new doll. Mom, could you please go away?  We kinda just want to play by ourselves.”

I went back upstairs and told N.’s mom that the kids had been checking out each other’s stuff.  We laughed and then talked about other things.

That night I asked M. how she liked playing with N.

“Good.”  (How can a kid with such a fantastic vocabulary be so verbally stingy when it comes to answering her mother’s questions?!?)

“So, you have other friends who are girls with vaginas, and N. is a girl with a penis.  Was it any different playing with N.?”

“Better.”

“Better? Why?

“Because it feels good to know that there is someone else on the earth who is like me.”

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50 thoughts on ““Someone else on the earth who is like me”

  1. Wow! A lovely story and the last sentence made me tear up. I think that every last one of us that identifies as trans* has said that exact same thing! You, and M, are blessed that it could be said at six years old! Much love to you and your whole family!

  2. Dear gendermom M is so lucky to have such a good mom!! I was 6 in 1953 so was not able to experience such things. My hope is eventually being transgender will be no biggie!! ❤ Pamela

  3. I hope this will be the start of a big friendship for M & N. They’ll have each other for support when others don’t understand. You’re raising a confident, self assertive young lady there and she’s going to be so grateful for her Wonderful mother all her life.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  4. “Because it feels good to know that there is someone else on the earth who is like me.”

    I’m not crying. It’s just raining. Inside. On my face.

    -Connie

  5. Mine is old enough for kindergarten next year and I would love to find another girl with a penis in our new state for her to play with.

    • Sam, try the Facebook group “Parents of transgender Children”….It is a closed group, but you can send a request to join….The group have over 900 families spread around all over the place 🙂

  6. Widdershins–Your comment is soooooooooooooooooooooooooo absolutely spot on. Finding out that there others out there just like you is so reaffirming.

  7. I admire this. My adopted mother (I have two cause of this) is transgendered and it’s like I tell other people. You can’t help how they are born. Except everyone for who they are. My adopted mother became a full woman about 6 years ago and I’ll admit 2 moms is better than a mom and a dad

  8. Greetings from India.

    I had to read it twice and the comments to make sure this story is real. These kind of stories could be a bit too much to handle for an average Indian. But Indians are slowly but surely opening up. They must read more of such articles and real stories.

    You are a great mother. If all such kids had mothers like you, this world would be a different place for such kids.

  9. wow. brilliant story! Yes, that last line sort of left me speechhless and breathless and, wow!
    To be six and ‘get it’ in a world that many times won’t allow it… blessings, gendermom!

  10. This is beautiful, every mother and father’s biggest wish and hope is for their child, of whichever gender, to feel comfortable, accepted, and to just “get it” – can’t get better than that. 🙂 I also admire your way of describing the “oh shit what do I say here” because in those moments, as parents, what DO we say? We all experience it, and you sharing those unsure moments just screams honesty and vulnerability to me. I Loved this.

    • I completely agree with you Mandi.. I am not a parent, when I do take that next step, I want my child to feel as comfortable as they can. I will instill in them the notion that it is perfectly fine to be different and they do not have to be ashamed because of it.

      • Absolutely. And that’s the way it should be! It’s sooo important to embrace who we really are, and teach that to our children! So much social anxieties and depressions and identity confusion – let alone soul betrayal happen when we don’t!

  11. Reblogged this on Seeking My Lost Voice and commented:
    WOW!!! This world needs more parents like Gendermom. The post I’m re-blogging was just featured on Freshly Pressed, but it’s such a powerful message I asked if she would mind my doing so here. One amazing family with one very special little girl. 🙂

  12. Thanks so much for sharing your experiences. Your frank discussion of your thought process and the level of love and understanding you have for your daughter is both inspirational and comforting to know that there is a mother like you in the world.

  13. You two just stolen my heart beautifully written I have an active imagination and the way you told your story I could see it as it was in a theater play production. Bravo and loud applause for you both what a sweet child.

  14. I am quite jealous, I wish I had a mother like you. When I told my mother how I really felt at the age of 14, and that I had wanted to be a girl since i was ~7 or so, (when i was very very little nobody minded me playing dressup/dolls with my sister who is 21 months younger than me, after about that age i was kind of peer pressured into doing boy things though, and I didn’t want my parents to hate me so I went along with it.) she sent me to a therapist to try and make me normal, which just kind of broke my heart. I pretended to be normal again after a few months of her constantly not caring about how I felt. Between the ages of 14-16, i was always very sad, and constantly laying in my room depressed, suicide was constantly on my mind. I eventually started hanging out with people that did drugs/started using myself. My mother found out a few months later, and ofc was very unhappy about it. A year later when I was 17 and still using weed, she told me that she didn’t care if I wanted a sex change or w/e, she just wanted me back. I unfortunately was in way too deep at the time, and merely said “it’s too late for that.” I’m 19 and clean right now, I still don’t know how to tell her again, I’m positive if I word it correctly she might be understanding though :c At least I really do hope so, since all I want is to be accepted as me.

  15. Reblogged this on The End (so far) and commented:
    I cannot imagine the courage it takes to be a parent in this world. Or to be a kid, for that matter. Or to be transgender. I don’t check any of those boxes…

    I cannot imagine the courage it takes to be the parent of a transgender child in this world. Then I came across this post by a blogger who calls herself gendermom. And in a very short space, she has taught me so much about courage, being a parent, being a child and being transgender in this world. Mostly, though, this has taught me something more about love.

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