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Frustration and a lack of true commitment are the result. Will she change her mind when puberty hits? My experience was a definite no. Will she be allowed to change back and forth as she matures and discovers herself? Probably not. How will her friends and classmates react to her? With contempt and very little understanding.

This is her normal, so it will be what she makes of it.

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The problem with all these questions is that no one can really know, but she must be allowed to learn and explore freely if she is to find even a modicum of happiness. Just ask me after a lifetime of hiding and denial. My daughter was born a boy but realized at a very young age 3, I think that she was really a girl. My wife and I did not push her into being a girl.

Just the opposite. I used to tell her that she was a boy and to stop dressing like a girl. She would get very angry at me and tell me that she was a girl. I accept my daughter for who she is because she is my daughter and I love her. Recently, my daughter had to switch schools because of a redistricting. The school was afraid that she would be outed by the other students because they were looking under the bathroom stalls. Instead of addressing the issue of privacy, it was deemed easier to treat my daughter differently.

My daughter is a girl who just happens to have boy body parts. But there is this fear of something different. I am afraid that one day I am going to get a call from the school telling me that my daughter was attacked for being different. Transgender children do not want special privileges. They want to be treated equal.


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She wants to be treated like any 8-year-old girl. She wants to have crushes on boys, dance around the house when her favorite song comes on the radio and screech with delight when the prince saves the princess at the end of a fairy tale. Society is mostly to blame for the children who are being made miserable. When teaching classes in child development, I have asked the girls who had been called tomboys as kids to raise their hands.

Then I asked the boys in the class who had been called sissies to raise their hands. There was lots of laughter and no hands went up. I had no way to know if the tomboys grew up to be gay or transgender, but we all can see that they are easily allowed by society to wait and see what happens as they grow to adulthood. The little girl dressed up for Halloween as a monster or superhero is seen as cute, but heaven help the little boy in a tiara.

As a parent I would reason that as the tomboys mostly outgrew their gender dysphoria, so would the sissies and too bad we have no neutral word for these little boys. Letting the boys be princesses is as unlikely to cause them to be gay or transgender as is letting your daughter be Batman. How to get everyone else to accept this is another issue.

The writer is an associate professor of psychology at Brookdale Community College. As the head of the longest-standing specialized gender identity clinic for children and adolescents in the world, I would like to applaud Dr. Drescher for his thoughtful letter. In the past decade, children and adolescents with gender dysphoria have come out of the closet at a rate that is rather astonishing.

My impression is that the early gender transition approach will result in more children persisting in their desire to live as a member of the other gender, which is, in effect, a rather interesting social experiment of nurture. The field urgently needs comparative studies of the different therapeutic approaches that are currently in play and designed to help these children.

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Such studies will provide important information to the parents of these youngsters. The writer was chairman of the D. Fierstein is right. It is mostly adults who get worked up over the gender coding about who gets to use which bathroom. I share Ms. This can happen when parents and clinicians discourage gender variant behavior but also when some insist that early social transition is the treatment of choice. Beyer correctly notes a solid empirical basis supporting transition in adults.

Altered serotonergic activity in women with dysphoric premenstrual syndromes.

Yet the same cannot be said about the child literature. And I share her and Ms. The 97 percent success rate for adult transition was first ignored and then argued for decades. Bias against transgender and gender nonconforming people is profound. Denying that right is ethically wrong. And if a child grows up and decides to detransition, then what of it? The harm done is minimal, compared with denying a child the love and affection associated with encouragement of self-determination. The writer, a retired surgeon, is executive director of Gender Rights Maryland.

Sixty years of coping and study, and still I have no answers if I have lived my life correctly. Through the many lifestyle purges and attempts to change, I have continued to live with my alternate life. Frustration and a lack of true commitment are the result. Will she change her mind when puberty hits? My experience was a definite no.


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  4. Will she be allowed to change back and forth as she matures and discovers herself? Probably not. How will her friends and classmates react to her?

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    With contempt and very little understanding. This is her normal, so it will be what she makes of it. The problem with all these questions is that no one can really know, but she must be allowed to learn and explore freely if she is to find even a modicum of happiness. Just ask me after a lifetime of hiding and denial. My daughter was born a boy but realized at a very young age 3, I think that she was really a girl. My wife and I did not push her into being a girl.

    Just the opposite.

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    I used to tell her that she was a boy and to stop dressing like a girl. She would get very angry at me and tell me that she was a girl. I accept my daughter for who she is because she is my daughter and I love her. Recently, my daughter had to switch schools because of a redistricting. The school was afraid that she would be outed by the other students because they were looking under the bathroom stalls.

    Instead of addressing the issue of privacy, it was deemed easier to treat my daughter differently. My daughter is a girl who just happens to have boy body parts. But there is this fear of something different. I am afraid that one day I am going to get a call from the school telling me that my daughter was attacked for being different. Transgender children do not want special privileges. They want to be treated equal. She wants to be treated like any 8-year-old girl. She wants to have crushes on boys, dance around the house when her favorite song comes on the radio and screech with delight when the prince saves the princess at the end of a fairy tale.

    Society is mostly to blame for the children who are being made miserable. When teaching classes in child development, I have asked the girls who had been called tomboys as kids to raise their hands. Then I asked the boys in the class who had been called sissies to raise their hands. There was lots of laughter and no hands went up. I had no way to know if the tomboys grew up to be gay or transgender, but we all can see that they are easily allowed by society to wait and see what happens as they grow to adulthood.


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    The little girl dressed up for Halloween as a monster or superhero is seen as cute, but heaven help the little boy in a tiara. As a parent I would reason that as the tomboys mostly outgrew their gender dysphoria, so would the sissies and too bad we have no neutral word for these little boys.

    Altered serotonergic activity in women with dysphoric premenstrual syndromes.

    Letting the boys be princesses is as unlikely to cause them to be gay or transgender as is letting your daughter be Batman. How to get everyone else to accept this is another issue. The writer is an associate professor of psychology at Brookdale Community College. As the head of the longest-standing specialized gender identity clinic for children and adolescents in the world, I would like to applaud Dr.

    Drescher for his thoughtful letter. In the past decade, children and adolescents with gender dysphoria have come out of the closet at a rate that is rather astonishing. My impression is that the early gender transition approach will result in more children persisting in their desire to live as a member of the other gender, which is, in effect, a rather interesting social experiment of nurture. The field urgently needs comparative studies of the different therapeutic approaches that are currently in play and designed to help these children.

    Such studies will provide important information to the parents of these youngsters.