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My son wants to be a girl (update, #33, not good) - Page 3

post #41 of 104
I am so sorry. You are an absolutely amazing mama for so many reasons here. Your son sounds like a wonderful little boy, and what a blessing that he has you .
post #42 of 104
Oh my goodness! I don't know what to say. I wish I could make it better for you. Your poor dear child. I'd get out of this situation as soon as you can. It's just not worth it to be in a hateful environment.
post #43 of 104
SeekingSerenity! OMG! That sucks! Sounds like Uncle B is a controlling person and it is probably not healthy for you guys to be around him.
Can you stay at your parents?
Maybe you can post in your Tribal Area here on MDC and see if there are any mommas who can help you out with Accomadation.
Or check craigslist for a mama in a similar situation who your could house-share with.
I do also reccomend calling a local womens shelter. They should be able to help you access services to help you out and get you into a healthy living situation.
I'll be thinking of you and your LOs....
post #44 of 104
OMG....that is just awful. This is deja vu to me. He sounds exactly like my ex which is why he is now my ex. He simply could not handle DS exhibiting any feminine behaviors and even with counseling was absolutely rigid on it. After the divorce I actually agreed to let him skip support payments and he just agreed to walk away. I know it sounds dramatic but it was for the best.

You and your lil ones will be in our prayers. Be strong and do what is right for your child.
post #45 of 104
I hope you can find a housing situation that will be supportive of you and your child. You sound like a wonderful mama. Best of luck!
post #46 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Past_VNE View Post
Want to come to a farm in Texas?. The overall climate is no more accommodating, but I've got a 20 acre farm and an extra apartment that welcomes bejeweled suits, mama's clothes and everything else.
LOL, what part of Texas? I already live in north-central Texas - and you're right about the weather!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ktbug View Post
...and where the heck is your "best friend" in all of this? is she allowed to tell her husband to shut up? because i'd be hard pressed.
She is caught in the middle. According to what's she told me, she agrees with my opinion on how to handle this situation with my child, but also sees her husband's side with regards to his right to be comfortable in his own home. Stuck as she is, she's deferred to him on this. I know she loves my kids like her own (she even briefly wet-nursed my newborn while I had an infection), but when all is said and done, they aren't her children and maybe she thinks a few more weeks, or months or whatever, of my son being forced to conform won't ultimately hurt him.

Although I believe it will. It'll undermine his trust in me to support him or accept him, if nothing else. Because he won't see the distinction between Uncle B not allowing the dresses and me not allowing it - after all, in his world, I am the ultimate authority. Just one more way for this already emotionally-abused child to have his world flipped upside-down.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
It sounds awful. I hate to say it because I know you're in a terrible situation, but it is truly damaging for your son to live with that man. I don't care how nice he is about other things. That is emotional abuse.
I certainly feel it, too. After all I've gone through to get away from an abusive husband, I'm in what I thought was a safe place with a man who basically says, "you will do this my way, period" and I'm left with no other option.

Quote:
Originally Posted by captain crunchy View Post
Is staying at your parents a possibility? You could help in the caring of your father too -- I don't know all of the ins and outs obviously but is there any way?
I wish I could. My sister just moved out a month ago, though, after staying here with her DH and two kids for 10 months following a house fire. I don't think my parents could handle me and three little ones crashing their place this soon after finally getting it back to themselves. And since I don't have a job yet, their fixed income would not be enough after I lost my food stamps because of moving to another state.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ziggysmama View Post
...I do also reccomend calling a local womens shelter. They should be able to help you access services to help you out and get you into a healthy living situation.
I'll be thinking of you and your LOs....
Unfortunately that is my next step, when I get back. I'm returning this afternoon. It really hurts, as I went to their house as a way to avoid the shelter. I guess I should be grateful; at least I didn't have to have my baby at a place like that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by melissanc View Post
After the divorce I actually agreed to let him skip support payments and he just agreed to walk away. I know it sounds dramatic but it was for the best.
Not at all. I wish my actual husband would agree to this. I don't even want to address the issue of my son with him... that's just too much on one plate.

Thanks again to everyone for all your encouragement and support... I will keep y'all updated.
post #47 of 104
wow you are truly an amazing mom you really really are... it is inspiring to hear you and everyone who has posted respond with love and support i hope oneday everyone will feel that way..... and im sorry that your living arrangement isnt ideal. i just wanted to mention that it is fabulous of your friends to help you out BUT it is not healthy for you to feel like you should have to bend to Uncles will in regards to you son in order to keep living in his house. no matter how 'good' of a deed or how big of a favor this is it goes out the window if you feel like you have to do something that would ultimately harm your son in order to stay there. you might mention that as of right now the only one hurting your LO is uncle B.
post #48 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeekingSerenity View Post
...maybe she thinks a few more weeks, or months or whatever, of my son being forced to conform won't ultimately hurt him. Although I believe it will. It'll undermine his trust in me to support him or accept him, if nothing else. Because he won't see the distinction between Uncle B not allowing the dresses and me not allowing it - after all, in his world, I am the ultimate authority. Just one more way for this already emotionally-abused child to have his world flipped upside-down.
you're a very wise mama. one day your kiddo will be able to look back with so much love and awe in his/her heart because of the stand you took long ago. every struggling trans kid should be so lucky!

post #49 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by SeekingSerenity View Post
LOL, what part of Texas? I already live in north-central Texas - and you're right about the weather!
I'm an hour northeast of Houston. The offer really stands. I don't know if moving farther away from your family would ultimately help you, but we're here.

You're right about the weather, but I was actually referring to the conservative social 'climate' around here. We are the hippie alternative freaks around here and everyone treats us great so far, though. So......I take what I can get. To get my alternative needs met, I head over to our church, the closest "welcoming congregation of UUs, which means they are LGBT friendly...and they're biracial friendly and just about everything else you can put a title to. I love it.
post #50 of 104
I am so sorry you are dealing with this, it's got to be a rough situation.

It seems that Uncle B cares about you and your family, and that he may be getting a little too wrapped up in this concern over your son's clothing. At the same time, maybe you can look at it as Uncle B and you are both concerned about your son's social acceptance.... Uncle B seems to be more afraid of the girliness.

I think you need to assess where your limits are, and where Uncle B's limits are and if there is a workable compromise. It seems Uncle B is very bothered by the gender issue..... I haven't read all the posts, but maybe there is opportunity to compromise.

Would your son wear colorful but gender-neutral clothing? Would that be a compromise? Aqua, yellow, red, bright purple, lime green, orange? So much boys clothing is drab and depressing, but bright clothes could be middle ground.

Could you have "dress up clothes" (including girly and boyish things) available to your son? And dress up playtime every day that's special?

Would your son like to do more artwork and go crazy with glitter and pink and whatever colors he likes in that context?

I think you will need to have another talk with Uncle B.... you may want to say that you understand his concerns, at the same time, you feel your son needs some self-expression. It's a balancing act. I'm wondering if moving more toward gender neutral could work for you, your son and Uncle B.

But, you may also need to make a plan B, whether that is a shelter or something else. If Uncle B is too uncomfortable with a child "cross dressing" in his home, that's his call. Perhaps they can still help your family even if they are not providing living space.... so maybe keep the door open. I think you need to consider what your options are and be prepared so you have alternatives and aren't stuck at the last-minute in a tougher situation.

Best wishes. I'm so sorry you are experiencing this stress.

In terms of your son's gender identity, I wouldn't think that it's set in stone at all at this point and I wouldn't define him as any type of person yet.... it seems way too soon for that, but by letting him have freedom to express and explore, he'll grow into the person he's meant to be.

I think there's supporting your son's choices, and there's encouraging your son's choices. I think you can support without encouraging or discouraging, and maybe it's the encouragement Uncle B sees that concerns him. It's up to you how you feel about how you want to raise your child, and whether you want to leave this situation immediately or try some more to work out an option that lets you stay and that works for your child.
post #51 of 104
Oh goodness, this sounds horrible.

I would recommend, in addition to talking to a women's shelter, that you call local LGBT rights organizations, and especially trans rights organizations. They may be able to point you in the direction of some housing resources, as well as other resources that could support you during this tough time.

Thinking of you often,
megin
post #52 of 104
Wow, just wow.

You are amazing and I hope you can find yourself in another place that's more welcoming and accomodating to you and your family. THere is no doubt that you and your son will encounter many 'disapproving' figures like Uncle B in your lives, but you don't have to live with them. Your home should be your haven and retreat. I will send major, major good vibes for you- i hope the mama who offered her place will work out- if it seems right.
post #53 of 104
Quote:
The area I live in specifically is absolutely NOT open to that kind of thing.
I'm sorry. Your whole situation sounds so difficult. I wish you had a way to be somewhere that was accepting, both at home and out in the world. I do think that maybe Uncle B is concerned and that is where this is coming from, but its such a controlling kind of concern that it sounds toxic. I hope you can find a way to work around this or to be somewhere else.
post #54 of 104
post #55 of 104
hugs to you and your children, momma.
post #56 of 104
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Past_VNE View Post
We are the hippie alternative freaks around here and everyone treats us great so far, though. So......I take what I can get. To get my alternative needs met, I head over to our church, the closest "welcoming congregation of UUs, which means they are LGBT friendly...and they're biracial friendly and just about everything else you can put a title to. I love it.
Wow, it sounds wonderful! I wish I had that kind of community! I did attend a UU church in Ft. Worth last year that is very much like what you described, and it sucks that I am now so far away from them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KBecks View Post
It seems that Uncle B cares about you and your family, and that he may be getting a little too wrapped up in this concern over your son's clothing. At the same time, maybe you can look at it as Uncle B and you are both concerned about your son's social acceptance.... Uncle B seems to be more afraid of the girliness.

I think you need to assess where your limits are, and where Uncle B's limits are and if there is a workable compromise. It seems Uncle B is very bothered by the gender issue..... I haven't read all the posts, but maybe there is opportunity to compromise.
I certainly thought there was, after all we'd reached a kind of "compromise" when I agreed that my son would not wear feminine clothing around Uncle B. When Uncle B saw the little guy wearing one of my old maternity shirts for a night-shirt (because all of his PJ's were in the laundry), apparently that broke the compromise in Uncle's view. I didn't realize that - after all, my son had worn my shirts as nightclothes before. It was not a dress, it was not girl-clothes designed for him specifically, it was just an oversized shirt that served as pajamas. And for that, Uncle B yelled at him to go to his room where I had to keep him for the rest of the evening until bed, with the door closed.

Because we all know how threatening 5-year old boys sleeping in their mothers' shirts are. :

Quote:
Would your son wear colorful but gender-neutral clothing? Would that be a compromise? Aqua, yellow, red, bright purple, lime green, orange? So much boys clothing is drab and depressing, but bright clothes could be middle ground.
I'd love to do it that way. Even get him some shirts or pants from the girls' section that aren't definitively designed for girls (at this age, the cut doesn't matter anyway). That way he'd think he was wearing girl-clothes but only he'd know it. Unfortunately, I don't have the money to replace the boy-clothes I have for him. He has the one outfit that was a special thing for him, as I'd gotten the one and only child-support payment from his dad that I've ever received, and let the kids choose one thing they wanted. DD wanted a nightgown, DS wanted a dress. We got him the "bejeweled suit" instead of the dress. Apparenly Uncle B is also upset that I am spending money on clothes for the kids when they have perfectly decent clothes already. How I spend my children's support money isn't up to him, but it p*sses him off and I guess he vents it along with the clothing issue.

Quote:
Could you have "dress up clothes" (including girly and boyish things) available to your son? And dress up playtime every day that's special?
Nope. No girl clothing to be worn, even as a playtime thing, at all in his house. And no special time to do it, even if Uncle isn't there. I'm asked to remove the girl-clothes that belong to my son (there's only two things) from the house entirely. With all the other girls that live in the house, I can't get rid of all feminine attire that he might want, but it looks like I have to keep him from touching it for any reason.

Quote:
Would your son like to do more artwork and go crazy with glitter and pink and whatever colors he likes in that context?
He already does and spends a lot of time with his "paper princesses." However, I am afraid that will be the next thing to go. Uncle B said seeing my boy in his "night dress" (my old shirt) reminded him that during the day, the boy might have been wearing a real dress. (Yes, OMG, I am so ... like I can control what things remind him of something else... jeez.) So how long until seeing Punkin coloring a paper doll reminds him that he also likes girl-clothes?

Quote:
I think you will need to have another talk with Uncle B.... you may want to say that you understand his concerns, at the same time, you feel your son needs some self-expression. It's a balancing act. I'm wondering if moving more toward gender neutral could work for you, your son and Uncle B.
There will be another talk. I don't know how it will go. But I doubt gender-neutral is the answer. It seems like it's gotta be all snips, snails and puppy dog tails for my boy.

Quote:
If Uncle B is too uncomfortable with a child "cross dressing" in his home, that's his call.
I'm all too aware of that. I've never challenged him on any of his house rules. I've never questioned the way he heads his family. But I'm being told I cannot parent my son the way I see fit, as a resident of his home. And regardless of how long we stay there, this is still my son, and I don't believe I am a bad parent. I do not discipline his kids (they don't listen to me anyway) but he can tell me how to raise mine, so long as I am there... knowing I have nowhere else to go and no choice but to abide by him.

Quote:
Perhaps they can still help your family even if they are not providing living space.... so maybe keep the door open. I think you need to consider what your options are and be prepared so you have alternatives and aren't stuck at the last-minute in a tougher situation.
They've already helped so much. I'll never be able to repay the kindness and love they've offered. But I won't ask for it again. If this wasn't something that screamed to my heart so loudly as being so incredibly important to the emotional development of my son, I wouldn't be nearly as upset about it. It's all been so sudden, and so viciously inflexible, that I don't know how to integrate it into the overall situation.

And I do see the situation as becoming much, much more tough. Now I feel uncomfortable in the house - less like an extended-family member and more like an unwanted guest who's overstayed her welcome. All of this has come about in less than a week, too. That's part of what makes it so hard to deal with. (We've been there over 4 months.)

Quote:
In terms of your son's gender identity, I wouldn't think that it's set in stone at all at this point and I wouldn't define him as any type of person yet.... it seems way too soon for that, but by letting him have freedom to express and explore, he'll grow into the person he's meant to be.
I agree. There's still no saying for sure that this isn't just some really long phase. He could, this time next year, be running around begging for Little League lessons and refusing to take off his Superman costume, who knows? But by refusing to let him explore his own personal preferences, and setting a boundary that makes even considering what he wants right now to be off-limits, shameful and unacceptable, I am certainly defining something to him, wouldn't you say?

Quote:
I think there's supporting your son's choices, and there's encouraging your son's choices. I think you can support without encouraging or discouraging, and maybe it's the encouragement Uncle B sees that concerns him.
Uncle B said something like this during the first conversation we had. Then he changed and now it's all about the discouragement. And he's entitled to be concerned about my encouraging my son to wear what he wants and be what he wants, but I don't think he's entitled to call me a bad parent or be unfairly strict and hostile to my son due to that concern.

Quote:
Originally Posted by newmainer View Post
Your home should be your haven and retreat. I will send major, major good vibes for you- i hope the mama who offered her place will work out- if it seems right.
I wish it could be... it's been a long time since my children and I had a haven of our own. I wonder if the hostility that abounds in the world isn't doomed to follow us everywhere. (Sorry - bit of a gloomy lapse there... there's just a whole lot to deal with right now!!)
post #57 of 104
I think you should take Past_VNE up on the offer of the apartment!

an hour from dallas in whichdirection? I live just north/east of Mckinney. We are pretty crowed already, but we could all scootch over if we had to....
post #58 of 104
Wow, I have no advice, but just read this whole thread and wanted to give hugs and say that I think you are a WONDERFUL MOM. Your son is so lucky to have you. I wish you the best at getting out of the fix you're in, it sounds really hard. Good luck--whatever happens, it sounds like your son will know that you love and support him, and that will matter more than a hundred "uncle B's"

And I had to add that I love MDC. You mamas are ALL awesome (esp those of you offering your places). It's making me teary.
post #59 of 104
There are a couple of things in this thread I disagree with:

Quote:
If Uncle B is too uncomfortable with a child "cross dressing" in his home, that's his call.
It is emotionally abusive to this child to force him to conform in a way that is uncomfortable and painful for him. Uncle B is an adult and he needs to just get over himself for the sake of that child. He isn't the child's parent and he doesn't get a vote on parenting issues no matter where the child is living. He is overstepping his bounds. When you invite people into your home to help them, you don't then force them to be unhappy and uncomfortable. Especially children. That's just plain wrong.

This is the other thing that makes me uncomfortable:

Quote:
I think there's supporting your son's choices, and there's encouraging your son's choices. I think you can support without encouraging or discouraging, and maybe it's the encouragement Uncle B sees that concerns him.
I don't think this mother is doing anything but accepting her son and letting him be who he is. I'm uncomfortable with the idea that allowing him to be who he is is "encouraging" as if his behavior is something negative she should be careful to not encourage. I think that would send a bad message to him. And that language makes it sound like this man is being sensible and realistic and that's just not the case. He's being cruel due to his own hang-ups, and again, as an adult, he needs to get over that for the sake of this child.
post #60 of 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
...that language makes it sound like this man is being sensible and realistic and that's just not the case. He's being cruel due to his own hang-ups, and again, as an adult, he needs to get over that for the sake of this child.
just wanted to highlight this because it's so awfully important. the only leg this guy has to stand on is one of ignorance and bigotry, especially sad and sickening because it's directed towards an innocent little kid.
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