Girl, 10, trapped in a boy’s body

By James Connell, from the Worcester News

http://www.worcesternews.co.uk/news/9245624.Girl__10__trapped_in_a_boy_s_body/

10:02am Monday 12th September 2011

A GIRL trapped in a boy’s body has made the brave decision to return to school for the new term as a girl.

The 10-year-old, a year six pupil at primary school in Worcester, was born a boy but took the decision with her family over the summer holidays to return as a girl.

The Worcester News has agreed to protect the identity of the girl who has had gender dysphoria diagnosed by experts in London.

This is a rare condition where a person feels that they are trapped within a body of the wrong sex.

Her 36-year-old mum, who lives in Worcester, said: “She is within her mind a girl but she has a boy’s body.

“She is the same as everybody else apart from the fact she doesn’t feel right in her own body.”

Her mum said that she had known that her daughter was was different since the age of two-and-a-half.

She said: “She would rather play with a doll than a car.

“She is a girlie girl. She wants all the latest fashions. There is nothing about her which is male.

“It wasn’t a problem until she got to primary school at the age of seven-and-a-half.

“Then she would have to lie about what she got for Christmas and say a football or an Action Man when in fact she got a pair of sparkly shoes and a Barbie.

“Everything she was having to do was a lie.”

She also said her daughter, who would dress as a girl in school holidays, received abuse during the summer break when she went to buy orange juice and milk from the shop and returned crying when an adult called her a freak.

Her mum said: “She returned and said, ‘Mum, I can’t even go to the shop’. We went to a performance at the school and my daughter went as herself.

“Some of the parents were unhappy she was allowed to go into the school. They were walking past, coughing, and saying, ‘That’s that freak family. That’s that freak child’.”

Her mum said there had been some bullying from the children, verbal and physical, but that many children had accepted her and it was adults who had given her abuse.

Her parents have not yet decided how they will approach her medical condition in future but say she will not be given hormone blockers until she is 12.

Her mum said: “It’s not a phase. It’s not a choice.

“What child would choose to be completely miserable?

“I don’t expect people to understand. I just don’t want people abusing my child.

“I don’t want her to be called a freak. I want her to be left alone.”

Her mum said the headteacher of the school had been “fantastic” and said her daughter had been “brave” to come back to school as a girl.

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As a former teacher of this age-group, I think this is a courageous decision both by the girl and by her parents.  It is to applauded that gender dysphoria is now being picked up and acknowledged in childhood, as this girl has a good chance to live a normal life in the gender to which she knows she belongs.  She won’t have to face the nightmare of hitting puberty with a male body, which is flooded with testosterone and turns into something which she doesn’t want and barely recognises!

I can well remember when this happened to me, almost overnight.  I got up one morning and found that my small, slender face and dear little nose had begun to transmogrify into something which no longer looked like me – the person I felt I was inside.  My nose was broadening and getting bigger, I was starting to grow facial hair, and my brow was becoming more pronounced, as if I was turning in some sort of prehensile ape!  I was mortified and horrified – but could do nothing to stop the process, over the following months.  And then my voice started to squeak and break.  I remember sitting at the mirror in the privacy in my bedroom, and on various occasions looking with despair at my masculining face, trying desperately to back-comb my hair and make it look a more feminine style.  All to no avail!  This is what we feel like, we who are gender dysphoric, when we hit puberty.

I am so glad and happy for this young girl in Worcester, that we live in more enlightened times these days, and she won’t have to face the appalling prospect of watching herself turn into someone of the wrong gender, not matching the person she feels herself to be inside.  Well done, you are a brave girl, and your parents are also brave.  And the school is to be commended for its acceptance and support.

x Kate (Amber)

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