A nine-year-old who was biologically male has now chosen to live as a female who's two years younger.
Autumn Norris was formerly known as Anthony and, for a long time, she felt like she wasn't a male at heart.
He was always interested in doing his nails and his makeup. At the time, the mom said she thought her child was simply experimenting or enjoyed playing different roles. She didn't think he was old enough to be aware of his gender.
However, one day, Anthony approached his mother and said that he felt he was a girl. From then on, they began making his transition a reality. The mom said:
Everything fell into place – it all made sense.
Fran said that the first thing Autumn wanted to do was to go shopping and, so far, she has loved being female. As a mother of three boys, Fran said it felt great to be able to do girly things with her daughter.
She's also glad that Autumn is now happy about who she is.
She also shared some advice for parents in a similar situation, saying that if they have a child going through what Autumn did, "it can be a beautiful thing."
Tips for parents with transgender kids
Fran has found a way to help her daughter feel better in her own skin. If you have a transgender child, your words of support can go a long way to help them come to terms with who they are.
Here are a few examples of what you can say:
- Show your willingness to at least try to understand: This can feel new and scary, but even though you're still struggling with it, your child should know you're putting in the effort. So you can say:
I don't understand yet, but I'm trying.
- Make memories: You don't want things to be tense in the home. So try and help your child come up with fun things you can both do while you figure things out. So say something like:
Let’s have fun together even when things are hard. What things would you like to do together?
- Find out what their plans are: You should give your child a chance to talk about what this might mean in their own mind. For instance, you might ask;
Would you like to tell other people about your gender?
More than anything else, your child needs your support, so keep the lines of communication open, ask questions if you're unsure and always remind them of how much you love them.
The material in this article is for informational purposes only and does not replace the advice of a certified specialist.