Thank you for commenting

Oh my gosh. Thanks so much for commenting! I love people and I love talking which is why I’m super excited that you took the time to share your thoughts. I’m trying to build a community of people who are interested in talking about transgender issues, parenting, LGBT equality, and helping youth overcome obstacles. So, I really appreciate it when people move from being a “lurker” to being an active part of the community here at Non-Conforming Mom. It’s not always easy at times to put your voice out there.

I would love for you to stick around and become a more talkative member of the group. Educating others starts with sharing our story and being open to dialogue. So please, feel free to share the good, the bad, and the ugly. Even if you disagree with me. Yep, that’s right. You don’t have to agree with me to leave a comment though I hope you’ll do your best to remain respectful.

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I hope that this one comment won’t be your last, but if it was, then thanks for taking an active part in the community here at Non-Conforming Mom!

7 thoughts on “Thank you for commenting

  1. Scout

    hi- I’m Scout, or Jo (my official name on all the records) and I’m fifteen. I live in australia and I’m kind of tossing up between gender fluid and agender (leaning towards the first option). a lot of the time, I forget that adults care about us queer youth. I forget that telling people I have a girlfriend (I was born female, and look very very feminine- curse the DD cups to hell!) won’t make them hate me. but going on your blog and reading your posts helps me remember we have support.
    your daughter conner is lucky and beautiful and she’s going to grow up without so many of the burdens a lot of us face. being accepted almost from when she realised who she really was is having effects on her that she may not even fully realise yet. I’m so happy, and so thankful to you, that she’s never going to have to hide from her own parents or family or friends.
    I don’t know why I have such a bond towards her. I’ve spent the last hour or two reading all the posts here, and I guess all us trans kids want to look out for each other.
    I’m thankful my own mother supports me (she tries to. everyone in my family still calls me a girl, and sister, and daughter and that hurts but I know they wouldn’t if they realised just how much it hurts). I’m thankful I get to go to see a psychologist. I just wish my community could be as lovely as yours, that people would accept that just because I don’t try and flatten my breasts every day and have brown, buzz cut hair, it doesn’t mean I’m a girl. I think seeing how you still love and accept conner as a girl even though she has a penis helps. my body doesn’t equate to my gender. and seeing that some adults get that… it’s a bright spark.
    I beg you- please keep working to spread support and love and info. our community isn’t small, but it’s invisible, and we need cis people to stand with us and agree with us or else our fight for acceptance becomes trans vs cis.
    thanks for your time, and thanks for this blog’s existence. please send my love to Conner and let her know how utterly brave I think she is for defending her personhood as a girl, and refusing to give in to the pressure to be a boy just because she has a penis.
    love from scout

    1. Melissa McLaren Post author

      Dear Scout,
      I am glad that you have someone to talk to but I’m sorry that your family isn’t as supportive as you need them to be. I’m glad that you sent me this note. It’s good when other transgender kids talk to each other. I’m excited that we got to hear about each other. It’s amazing that I’m getting notes from other transgender kids in the world. I’m glad that we got to do that. I’m sorry that your family doesn’t treat you like you feel you are inside, as a transgender kid. Love, Conner

      Scout, your note is so important to us as a family. I had to take several hours and think about how to respond to you. I can only encourage you that things will get better. I’m glad your family is loving but I do wish they could be more supportive of your identity as a gender fluid/agender leaning individual. I feel like a lot of time, gender fluid/agender individuals fall through the cracks. I’m so happy that you have a psychologist to talk to. I want to assure you that you are special and perfect just the way you are. Our world is paying more attention to the gender spectrum. Please know that there are so many people fighting for transgender/gender fluid/agender individuals. Many parents, teachers, and those in the medical community are recognizing you and the importance of accepting you FOR YOU. Thank you for reaching out to us. I’m excited to know that our little blog reached you and that it made an impact. Your words have made an impact on us too. With much love and long sent support from the other side of the world, Melissa

  2. Sheogorath

    Hello, Melissa.
    I don’t know much about trans issues, so I’m glad that someone like you allows people to comment so I can learn more. I’m looking forward to reading everything you’ve written thus far and commenting where appropriate.
    BTW, I’m Autistic, so if I say something that feels like a punch in the gut to you, please understand that I don’t mean it and explain what I said wrong. I can’t learn from my mistakes if they’re not pointed out to me.

  3. Ally

    Hi Melissa,

    I am a parent of a beautiful and rambunctious 5 year-old transgender daughter, and am so proud of her. I just wanted to share that I really appreciate your blog and writing about the very happy and normal family experiences trans families have. Yes, we experience different challenges and fears (the kids world is a cruel one and we are already having to change elementary schools before our daughter begins kindergarten in September because of consistent bullying at a nearby playground). So our different challenges and fears are important to relate to and read about. But equally important is revealing that we are also families that are watching our amazing children grow and develop into amazing human beings. We are excited to see their brains grow and personalities shine. We love them for who they are. I am a mamma who has never mourned a ‘loss’ of a prior gender but who has honored and celebrated the child who has simply always been. Children are simple I think, it’s the adults that view things in complex ways, perhaps out of fear and the instinct to protect.

    We have been overwhelmed as we have not even yet entered the education system because we are realizing that there are a lot of good intentions but there’s also a lot of misinformation and confusion about what transgender is. And in childhood, developmental safety is a primary concern. How have you navigated through the different schools you have experienced? This is perhaps more of a blog request than a ‘comment section’ question.

    I really appreciate reading your observations about how the experience of being different may feel for your daughter and how attending a gender inclusive camp is healing. We have recently started to try to find other transgender kids our daughters age to help her connect with on a regular basis, with similar intentions as the camp you discussed in your blog. Social safety is second only to family safety I think.

    Thanks again for writing about your family experiences and helping families like us see that there are others out there like us. Who are maybe figuring things out while still insisting that life is mostly about closeness, acceptance, awe of parenthood, and perhaps the goal to infuse light-hearted calm into daily life to counter-balance the challenges associated with being a transgender family. I look forward to reading more of your blogs!

    1. Melissa McLaren Post author

      I’m so sorry that I’m just now seeing your post. As to your question, we have navigated each school very differently. There have been some consistent themes though. First, educate yourself as much as possible and practice giving your story. Learn the proper terminology and learn the important pieces of education such as how our kids have been persistent, insistent, and consistent in their assertion of their gender. You will be your child’s biggest advocate and you will need to know how to have these conversations with school officials, medical providers, and complete strangers. It will be hard at first, but you will get better at it.

      Give the school a chance to be an advocate. I have found that most, if not all, educators want what is best for children and they want to provide an environment where children can learn. A child who is so stressed about their gender and bullying cannot learn. Most of our educators have partnered with us in providing an environment that is accepting of all children.

      Talk to your child frequently and relay that information to the school. Be aware of how your child behaves when they are stressed or anxious. If you think something is wrong, follow up on it. Our child went from fine to very depressed quickly due to school bullying. Have a team of providers ready to give support to you, your child, and your family. A therapist and a pediatrician are the bare minimum. We went through years of relative quiet after the initial transition, and then BAM, stressors came up quickly as our daughter got closer to puberty. Have a tribe of supporters to be a support for your family because tough times will come. They will also go and you’ll have relative quiet again.

      I hope you have found an online support group and an in-person group of friends, family, and people to stand with you. I can point you in the direction of some support so feel free to reach out.

      Thank you for the comment and thanks for supporting your child. Our children are so brave!

    2. Melissa McLaren Post author

      Hi Ally,
      In case you didn’t see it, I responded this this where you had also posted it in the Comments page. I’m so glad you’ve found our website if only because then I get to hear about your wonderful story as well. I wish you the very best of luck and I look forward to continued contact with you. –Melissa


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