When my son Harry was two, I’d never heard the word transgender. The year was 1992, and the terms gender nonconforming, gender creative and gender expansive just didn’t exist yet. So the night Harry told me, “inside my head I’m a girl,” I wasn’t sure how best to respond. I only knew I wanted my happy child to feel good about himself. I wanted Harry to trust himself and believe in his worthiness. Those desires became my mantra.
Harry’s unexpected declaration made me check my parental expectations and beliefs. I learned to listen carefully. I let Harry’s own basic uniqueness take the lead on his developing identity. And I vowed to keep him from harm.
I remember all of this today as communities around the world unite for Transgender Day of Remembrance, memorializing the trans people who died by violence in 2015. In their honor, the Human Rights Campaign released a video that features some of the fierce, remarkable moms of today who are using their voices to advocate for kids, families and transgender equality. Please watch with your heart and hope for the future safety of all trans kids.
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