A Texas mom and counselor testified before the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday, expressing how important gender transition was for her child. Her child, now 18, has not undergone any surgeries. Miriam Reynolds spoke about how she knew her child was trans. She claimed that she knew her 11-year-old was trans when the child eschewed stereotypical girl things, like the color pink.
Girls, however, don't have to like pink to be girls. And boys can like pink without being girls. However, this obvious truth has been obfuscated by many in the trans activist space, and preference for the color "pink" has also been used to identify boys as trans.
In an episode of My Trans Life, a child called Rebekah discussed being gender non-conforming, and how they knew they were trans at 8 years old. “I felt like I was a girl because I liked the color pink, and I liked girl clothes and how they wear their hair and stuff. I’m a girl in my head and my heart.”
"Cameron told us he was transgender when he was 11 years old," Reynolds said of her biological daughter, referring to him with male pronouns in Congress on Thursday.
"He was clearly dealing with something but we didn't know what it was or how to help him. But then he told us, my husband and I had the same instinct to tell him that we love him no matter what and always will be there for him," she said.
Reynolds testified that she and her husband drew on their years working with children as they made their next decisions for their child. They immediately decided to go along with what their child had said: that despite being female, he was actually meant to be the opposite sex.
"We knew we needed to affirm him from our years and working with foster youth," she said.
"We had no idea what to do next. We were scared. We didn't know anyone who had a trans child. We had never even heard of gender-affirming care. I prayed that it was a phase but already knew that it wasn't," she said.
Reynolds then described how she knew that her child's insistence on being born in the wrong body was not a phase, but a permanent condition requiring that the child be treated differently, despite being only 11 years old.
"The signs had been there all along. We just didn't understand them," she attested.
"We thought he was a tomboy," Reynolds said. "He refused to wear anything pink or girly and was the only girl on the boys football team for many years. His best friends were always boys."
"There were a lot of signs looking back," she said.
Of the signs she listed for the House Judiciary Committee, however, none of them reflect a child being born in the wrong body, or meant to be the opposite sex, but instead show a child that does not conform to stereotypical perceptions of boys and girls, and is confident enough not to feel that she had to do so to be accepted. Gender non-conforming girls are not boys.
"As parents, all we really want for our children is for them to be happy and healthy," Reynolds said. "Prior to receiving gender-affirming care and socially transitioning, my child was not happy and was not able to be his true self. I didn't want him to have to face the struggles of being transgender, but I did want him to be happy and himself."
Reynolds spoke about the difficulty of being a parent to a child who believes themselves to be the opposite sex. "At times I grieved my little girl and felt as if she were gone. It was hard on me at first, but I was able to put my child's needs before my feelings and find him the care he needed. I could see that my child was happier and felt more and more comfortable the more he was affirmed."
She spoke about the therapy that her child engaged in, and that they "found a comprehensive program at a local hospital that provided health care to trans kids. We found him a counselor and immediately began trying to provide him with the best health care we could find. We felt very fortunate to have access to a multidisciplinary team of professionals who could help us figure out what options we had for cameras healthcare."
After her testimony, detransitioned woman Chloe Cole spoke to her, saying that Reynolds reminded her of her own parents who were led astray by promises of a happy child who could only be complete with gender transition. Cole, who lost her breasts due to a "gender-affirming" double mastectomy when she was a young teen, told Reynolds she hoped her child would be happy and fulfilled as an adult, but cautioned that neither the process of transition, or detransition, were easy or straightforward.
Cole testified that her parents "were given the false dichotomy of either child transitions or she dies, but transition almost killed me." Cole has spoken at length about the difficulty her parents faced, and how they were poorly guided by a healthcare system that pushed so-called affirmation ahead of what was medically or psychologically best.
Reynolds testified that in her view, parents should have the right to transition their children if they believe that's what their child wishes. "With the benefit of hindsight, I have no doubt that the health care my son accessed was life saving," she said. "I am grateful that we have had access to this incredibly crucial medically necessary health care for our son without the interference of our government."
In many states, a parental desire to not allow their child to undergo medical gender transition is considered to be abuse. This is the case in New York, California, Oregon, Minnesota and Washington, among others.
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