A while back, I read a very sad story not related to Leelah Alcorn although that is another sad story. This one is about an XXY child who was gender denied... (paraphrased)
I read a story from a parent recently which was so very sad. Their child was raised as a boy, the parents insisted they had checked and knew their child was a boy. Didn't need some gender doctor to tell them that, just a waste of money. Instead they did everything they could to make that child a boy.. and when he didn't fit in they punished him. When that didn't work they medicated him.. when that didn't work they encouraged people outside the home to change the childs manifest destiny to make HIM a MALE like all the other boys.
Just one problem... at the age of 16 he killed himself.
The note left for his parents was short, to the point..(paraphrased lots more hatred in the note) "I'm female, I hate you, I hate life, I hate your friends, and I hate every damn this this world stands for."
That person is dead. Good thing to know the parent knew better than a doctor what gender to raise their child as. The parents can take heart, by knowing better than gender specialist 1-2 hour visit about the age of 5, they saved the cost of graduating high school and college at 16.
Now whats really sad is that I can relate to this story. It touches heart strings and pulls painfully. I remember what it was like to be caught wearing my sisters clothes, the price paid in blood and tears, the punishment to be beaten. Nothing straightens out a young Boy more than being beaten, right? About the age of 10, my parents decided that if I couldn't wear the clothing they decided I should then I didn't need any clothing at all. Their latest form of torture to convince a child she's a boy, consisted of coming home for three weeks from school and wearing a diaper while the parents invited my friends (soon had none) and their friends over to watch. As you can imagine this broke my spirit to resist, if the beatings didn't do it... the shame sure did. Time went by.. I learned to be an angel in what ever mode the parents wanted, otherwise I would be beaten.. again, and again. Didn't help any that learning without instructions on what the expected actions and results should be meant more beatings. Probably the single greatest lesson in all of that I learned was to be cognizant of my surroundings, aware of the beasts and dragons in my life, and how to handle them with kid gloves at long reach. I knew for example that when my step dad arrived at home I had to be close to the opposite door he would enter, as I would know within 2 seconds if fleeing was necessary... or if I would have to go be "present" for him to see and acknowledge as still living. Two seconds, you see was the time to reach the door before he did. One learns to not be present, on bad days.
To this day I hold a great deal of pain, at the age of 15 my parents divorced, mother and children off into the world without him; It was like a reprieve from hell. Of course, my mother being a sensible woman who willfully ignored any outside opinion and only believed doctors should be seen when you were dying... unless she was sick. Oh yes, mother, how could I ever forget? When I was 16 and started developing breast tissue she ignored it. When I ran into any number of problems in school, she ignored it, after all thats what Boys do, fight.
What my mother could have done was help me with estradiol at the age of 16 to assist development of a normal female.
Instead at the age of 16, she kicked me out of the house.. said I had to learn to survive on my own. As an XXY person I was a prodigy with mathematics, economics, social sciences, and a few other things none of which equaled the ability to survive mid-winter in Alaska with one set of clothing in below zero temperatures. I'll never forget that week.. to say it went badly is an understatement of many degrees. And it took time to come back from that place. The next year had me going to school, working, paying rent, surviving... eating occasionally because there wasn't enough money for food. Details right? There certainly wasn't much in the way of hope.
Everything that I am came from this experience of surviving despite the odds. And looking back, its a wonder I lived through ages 5-15.
So you wonder.. what should have happened? Who is really to blame here:
The willfully ignorant parents or the many doctors which no doubt caused the parents much financial pain?
My parents should have been advised by a doctor, a Family Practice Doctor... make no mistake they need to be able to guide parents to correct choices; I should have been tested about the age of 5 for Gender Identity as a child with an Intersex or DSD, raised in the correct gender, and followed by that doctor. Hello world, I'm Female, why in the world would you expect me to understand "boy"? At or about the age of 12 I should have been treated for the correct gender identified hormone to balance growth which in my case would have been estradiol. The results of a treatment like that would be me, about 6 inches shorter since the leg/arm bones would have properly capped from the rising hormone levels. I wouldn't have had to endure multiple stages of puberty as it would sputter to a start and then stop over and over as hormones rose and fell so minutely. I would have been normal.
I could have been normal.... if anyone had cared.
My mother has memory issues, from her own willful ignorance and remembers none of this. And I have not yet found it in myself to forgive her. She's old now, and I try to make sure she's okay. We don't talk about these years, her version is rosy and nice paints us kids, my sister and I, as angels with all the benefits of a perfect loving home. Yeh...
I feel a profound sense of loss, when 40 years have gone by and the medical system still, to this day, refuses to take responsibility for not educating the patient or the patient's parents of the catastrophic damage refusal to consider gender causes in the child. Our society is so highly stratified into genders that one must have a gender. This is a basic need, and being forced into the wrong one is a horrible experience.
XXY children need to have a Gender Identity specialist assist in determining their gender about the age of 5, and should receive gender appropriate hormone treatment about the age of 12, when luteneizing hormone begins to rise into "High" or "Very High" levels.
This is simple.
I could have been normal...
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