Transgender First-Grader Banned From Girls Bathroom

Premium Membership, The Good Men Project

About Kathryn DeHoyos

Kathryn DeHoyos currently resides on the outskirts of Austin, TX. She is the News Editor for the Good Feed Blog and absolutely loves what she does. She is the happy mommy to a wild 2 year old girl-child, and is blissfully happy being un-married to her life partner DJ.

Comments

  1. “We were very confused because everything was going so well, and they had been so accepting, and all of a sudden it changed and it was very confusing and very upsetting because we knew that, by doing that, [Coy] was going to go back to being unhappy.”

    God forbid a child be allowed to be unhappy. Everyone knows that parents’ jobs are to keep children from being unhappy. The school and the state should make any and every accommodation to ensure the uninterrupted happiness of every child under their care. History has proven that unhappy children cannot learn and will not be successful in life. I would gladly give up my first-grade daughter’s right to biological privacy in order to respect Coy’s right to happiness.

    • ” I would gladly give up my first-grade daughter’s right to biological privacy in order to respect Coy’s right to happiness.”

      Your daughter’s right to “biological privacy” is on the same level as Coy’s “right to happiness”. Neither is a right.

      Discomfort is a fact of life. Making trans students uncomfy on the basis of bigots who think penises are the incarnation of evil is less moral than making cis student uncomfy on the basis of them being in the presence (but not seeing, because stalls) of a penis in the same bathroom.

      • Martin Nash says:

        Staring at women in yoga pants make me happy…

        (obvious troll but that’s kind of the point)

      • Your daughter’s right to “biological privacy” is on the same level as Coy’s “right to happiness”. Neither is a right.

        Correct, which is what makes this whole argument about there being something wrong with the school barring Coy from using a particular restroom all the more illogical. If it is not a right, then Coy is not entitled to use the girls’ restroom just because it makes Coy “happy” or “comfortable.”

        Making trans students uncomfy on the basis of bigots who think penises are the incarnation of evil is less moral than making cis student uncomfy on the basis of them being in the presence (but not seeing, because stalls) of a penis in the same bathroom.

        Is that really the argument the school made? That penises are the incarnation of evil? No, their argument is that Coy is not a girl but a boy, which is a biological fact, and as per the school’s regulations Coy is not allowed to use the girls’ restroom. I suspect this became an issue because some girl saw Coy’s penis. I do not think there is a moral issue here, just a practical one. However, if there is one, the moral issue is whether one child should be uncomfortable by having to use a separate restroom versus dozens of children being uncomfortable because a member of the opposite sex (who thinks they are a member of the other group’s sex) is in their private space.

        • “Is that really the argument the school made? That penises are the incarnation of evil? No, their argument is that Coy is not a girl but a boy, which is a biological fact, and as per the school’s regulations Coy is not allowed to use the girls’ restroom. I suspect this became an issue because some girl saw Coy’s penis. I do not think there is a moral issue here, just a practical one. However, if there is one, the moral issue is whether one child should be uncomfortable by having to use a separate restroom versus dozens of children being uncomfortable because a member of the opposite sex (who thinks they are a member of the other group’s sex) is in their private space.”

          It’s not “a biological fact”. Or else, I’m a boy too. And guess, what, I’m using women’s restrooms, 100% of the time. With zero incidents! Imagine that.

          And why not call Coy Napoleon in your “He’s just a deluded guy thinking he’s a girl” speech?

          • Schala, the situation with you as an adult is different from that of a child. I live with children. They are not as careful at maintaining their privacy as adults. Again, I suspect what prompted this was some girl seeing Coy’s penis. It may be that Coy told the girls. We do not know. The easiest way to prevent any further issues, however, is to have Coy use the gender neutral restroom. It solves that particular problem for the moment, and I think it is a better decision then having Coy be home-schooled, which is probably more traumatic given that she has gone to school with other kids all this time.

            As for the biological fact thing, one’s sex is determined by one’s chromosome pattern. These cannot randomly change in any mammalian species, nor can they be altered by hormone therapy or physical alterations to the body. It is biological fact that Coy is male. Whether Coy perceives herself as such does not change that she is biologically male, and there is nothing short of changing her chromosome pattern that would make that untrue.

            I do not know what the school’s actual issue is with Coy using the girls’ restroom. I doubt it is that they think Coy will do something to the girls. It is likely just the issues it presents in trying to explain why a boy is dressed like a girl and why he thinks he is a girl.

            • Jameson says:

              I think you hit on an important distinction that is often lacking from discussions of trans people, the difference between biological sex and gender; they are not the same thing. For the vast majority of people their biological sex and gender match, no problem; but for trans people this is not the case. You are correct, based on my DNA, I am biologically female, but my gender is male. I don’t “think I’m male”, I am male, and unless you saw me completely naked you would never suspect otherwise (even my ID says I’m male).

              So again, with bathrooms, is the use of a bathroom based on biological sex or gender? Given that from my outward appearance while clothed you have absolutely no idea what my biological sex is but can readily see that my gender is male, I would argue that bathrooms ought to be segregated based on gender and not biological sex. Believe me, if I walked into a public womens room security would be called based on my appearance regardless of what my chromosomes say and short of getting naked I would have no way of proving that it’s “perfectly appropriate” for me to be in the womens room due to my lack of penis. (Really, I’d argue that it is absolutely NOT appropriate for me to walk into a womens room since I am a male, body parts aside.)

            • Even further than that Jameson:

              Biological sex is the brain, genitals are only there for reproductive stuff, nothing else. I’m female, not “biologically male but a woman”. My chromosomes are unlikely to show I’m female, but my DNA could show it somewhere, if we could analyze the entirety of genetic code cheaply.

              I would argue bathrooms and locker rooms ought to just not be segregated period. Like in Starship Troopers…and some countries in this reality. I see no problem here. Let’s also have accomodations for people who want stalls in communal showers, and single-person facilities for people with religious problems with being seen naked or nearly naked.

            • “I live with children. They are not as careful at maintaining their privacy as adults. Again, I suspect what prompted this was some girl seeing Coy’s penis.”

              I highly doubt that. Not being as careful about nudity doesn’t mean flashing random people.

              “It may be that Coy told the girls.”

              Also unlikely.

              “The easiest way to prevent any further issues, however, is to have Coy use the gender neutral restroom. It solves that particular problem for the moment, and I think it is a better decision then having Coy be home-schooled, which is probably more traumatic given that she has gone to school with other kids all this time.”

              I’d personally rather be home schooled and isolated at home than schooled in isolation over there, where I have no protection against bullies, and suddenly a yellow star on my vest pointing in big neon my difference. People didn’t know I was trans, I wasn’t feminine, and I still got shit from bullies in elementary school. You’re asking to make it worse, just so parents (because kids don’t care – they are inherently more accepting of difference if it’s not presented as negative) can feel better about their own kids.

              “As for the biological fact thing, one’s sex is determined by one’s chromosome pattern.”

              Wrong, it’s determined by the seat of identity, in the brain.

              Only your possible reproductive capacity is shown by chromosomes (most exceptions are infertile). Your reproductive capacity should mean NOTHING except to you, possibly your long term partner in the future, and your doctor for gonad-specific healthcare. Nothing else, ever. Not school, not work, not the government, not passports, not anyone else.

              “These cannot randomly change in any mammalian species, nor can they be altered by hormone therapy or physical alterations to the body. It is biological fact that Coy is male. Whether Coy perceives herself as such does not change that she is biologically male, and there is nothing short of changing her chromosome pattern that would make that untrue.”

              They don’t need to change, it is a biological fact that both me and Coy are female, with (probably) testis, and (probably) a penis. See above.

              “It is likely just the issues it presents in trying to explain why a boy is dressed like a girl and why he thinks he is a girl.”

              If it was only that, it would have been fixed in 5 minutes, without creating such a brouhaha. It’s the school staff who are afraid that the parents of girls will perceive Coy as a predator (sexual or otherwise), because we all know girls are all victims of rape, and boys will jump at the chance of raping, even at 6 years old.

              The parents (Derek excepted) probably don’t care one bit about doing “extra explaining”, they care a lot about the physical well-being of their child though. And everyone knows trans people are perverts, and perverts are evil, and evil people are violent, and evil male people are violently sexual, right? /sarcasm

        • And you can see below that “penises are evil incarnate” IS Derek’s argument (vouching for “the safety” of his cis daughter, because she’s “in danger” when penises are around, right?)

          • Schala, Derek’s not attacking you. He’s being very polite.

            • There is a large current of transphobia led by, at least when against trans women, (ironically) misandry. It focuses on “men are naturally violent and sexual, so will rape given the chance”, and thinks that any female ought to be scared of the mere possibility of the presence of a penis in one of the stalls, because the penis owner is bound to bring violence upon them. There’s really no other reason for their reasoning to keep bathrooms sex-segregated.

              It *used* to be puritanical notions the same Jewish and Islamist culture have about women being seen intimately, but now that we have slut walks, and women in bikini easily seen all the time, this prudishness died. Now the reasoning is “men are beasts” and “will rape women given access to bathroom”. Even a 8 years old.

            • I know exactly what you mean. Misogyny and misandry end up punishing trans people in really weird ways. Feminists sometimes cozy up to me because they see me as some kind of cuddly lite-man, and I’m not even sure which mis- that falls under.

              In Derek’s case it sounds like he’s less afraid of the mystical penis sword than he is of having to teach his kids something he doesn’t think they’re ready to hear about, so we’re talking through why that is.

            • Tobias, it sounds like you understand my point. It is not about my comfort level of talking to my kids. It is about how I want to raise MY kids. I feel sorry for anyone who does not have peace and happiness in their lives…we all struggle to varying degrees and it is especially bad when children suffer. And reasonable accommodations should be made. But I don’t feel that gender mixed bathrooms, especially for children is a good thing, and I’m not sorry for feeling that way. I have just as much right to my beliefs as others do. I don’t believe I should be told how I have to raise my kids.

              And for the record, I love my magical penis sword! Matter of fact, I think I’ll go wield it right now…have a good night!

            • Comment in moderation

              and I’ll add:

              I have zero patience for people who support this type of misandric transgynophobia.

            • I can certainly understand why it would make you feel better to yell at them, but I’m enjoying my conversation with Derek very much, and would honestly like to hear what he sees as the challenges of teaching kids about trans people. That’s not misandric transgynophobia to me.

            • I don’t yell. I assert myself in a firm manner on a ground that highly matters to me.

              If I’m for equality and against double standards for men vs women, I take it even more to heart that trans people be treated well and fairly, given the built-in bias of “asking for special treatment” and “you’re just deluded” often thrown around for trans people.

              Having the right pronouns and name is special treatment for some.

  2. Ha ha, yeah, I guess you’re right… why have bathrooms at all? Just let it all hang out, because you want to. Privacy and modesty be damned… Let’s make everyone “uncomfy” so everyone is equal in discomfort. Makes perfect sense. Maybe you missed the part in the article where the kid is able to use private, unisex bathrooms. So the kid has a penis, biological fact, and wants to use the girl’s bathroom, stalls or not, everyone else’s wishes be damned. Entitlement has gotten out of hand…the individual is now more important than society as a whole.

    You seem to making this about bigotry, and it is easy to say everyone who disagrees is a bigot. You also seem to think everyone who disagrees thinks penises, and I assume nudity in general, is evil. Interesting…I could be wrong, but it seems you make a lot of assumptions.

    • Imagine, if you will, that when you were a child you were told that you were not a boy, but a girl. You knew all those people were wrong, but for whatever reason they were absolutely determined to call you a girl. You were not allowed to do all the things boys did, but worse, everyone seemed disgusted by you and hated you just because you told them you were a boy. Imagine yourself at five years old being told that you were different from all the other boys, so disturbing to them that you weren’t allowed to enter gendered spaces with them.

      Can you imagine the pain and confusion you would have felt?

      For what it’s worth, I don’t think you’re a bigot, and I would ask other commentors to stop calling you that. You are just fortunate enough to have lived a life where you see that pain as mere “discomfort.”

      • Who, me? Your post confused me a little…I was not the one who brought up discomfort. My use of that was in response to Schala. Imagine, if you will, that you have a daughter. You send your daughter to a public school, with a reasonable expectation of safety and security. You, and all the other parents of little girls, are told that a biological male is going to be allowed to use bathroom facilities with your daughter and all the rest of the biological females. His and his parents’ wishes are that he not be singled out and made to feel different and discriminated against, REGARDLESS of the wishes of the rest of the parents who may object. PERIOD, END OF STORY. If you have a penis, regardless of your gender identity, you go in the bathroom where penises go. If you have a vagina, you go in the bathroom with the vaginas. And if you, one individual, are uncomfortable, or pained by that, then the school has offered a unisex, private bathroom for your use (reasonable accommodation). I may be misunderstanding your point, but I think you are saying that the needs of an individual outweigh the needs of the community, beyond reasonable accommodation.

        I don’t believe anything I have said is bigoted. I do not have a problem with LGBT, I have friends who are gay, I am not in favor of discrimination. And I find it interesting that you make an assumption about my life that I am fortunate enough to have lived a life…etc.” I also have compassion…everyone of us have our struggles getting through life. I have been fortunate to have traveled the world and seen serious hardship, poverty, hunger…nobody is complaining about which bathroom they have to use…when they don’t have the luxury of a choice. I feel bad for this kid, mostly because his parents seem to be forcing a gender identity on him. Instead of letting him be who he is…wear pink, play with dolls, who cares? My boys have done that, and they grow out of it…or not. I still treat them as a person, just like I treat everyone regardless. When my son played with my daughter’s dolls, I didn’t rush to label him or worry that he wasn’t meeting society’s expectations.

        • I’m sorry, I know Schala did, but I was responding to your dismissal of it.

          I think the misunderstanding here may be over the assumption that the parents are forcing their child to do anything. Trans people are normally forced to not express themselves, especially the ones who figure out their gender early on in life, as this girl seems to have. You did exactly what your boys needed – let them choose their own lives and gender expressions – and it seems that these parents have done the same thing. If she does a bit more self-exploration ten years down the line and settles on being a boy, then they will have to do no more for her than if she had just not told them she was a girl until then.

          It’s difficult to explain to someone whose gender identity is in line with their assigned sex how it feels for that to be off. For me it was a disconnect: a complete lack of ability to visualize myself as a woman in the future, and constant surprise when I saw my breasts. And yes, I use the men’s bathroom, even though I have a vagina, because that is natural for me. (And I could expect to be harassed, perhaps even assaulted, if I tried to use the women’s.)

          I have no reason to doubt your compassion, or your commitment to LGBT rights, but trans people require different things than gay people. For us, using a bathroom that matches our gender is not a trivial matter. It may seem entirely reasonable to you to send the girl to a gender-neutral restroom – and sometimes that is the best solution -, but from her perspective it is a cruel and confounding stamp of her difference. That’s why I asked you to put yourself in her shoes and imagine how it feels for her to be treated that way.

          While I respect your concern for your children, there really is no harm in peeing one stall over from someone with different genitals. Trans people do not commit assault, sexual or otherwise, in restrooms. We enter, do our business, wash our hands, and leave. There really are no community needs conflicting with ours.

        • Actually, I would be really curious to hear what you think would happen to the other girls if Coy were allowed to use the restroom with them.

          • Tobias, I would be really curious to hear what you think would happen to girls if boys were allowed to use the restroom with them or vice versa. In other words, do you think it is reasonable or warranted for the two sexes to have separate restrooms?

            • Frankly, no, I can see no utility in it at all. I’ve peed in every kind of bathroom there is and they all stink just the same. But as long as we have the system we have, trans people face a lot of danger, and I prioritize their demonstrated needs.

            • Jacobtk, as for me I think gender-segregated restrooms are silly, but I recognize that due to U.S. cultural sensitivities the segregation will be maintained for generations to come.

              (I’ve visited several nudist resorts in the U.S in my lifetime. Of those I recall only two offering any gender-segregated showers at all, yet every one has had strictly segregated restrooms. I find that curious.)

          • I wouldn’t say I’m committed to LGBT rights, rather I am against discrimination of anyone. It sucks that you experience discrimination for being who you are. I understand that you have first-hand experience in this discrimination that I do not have, and I probably can’t really know what it is like. I also wonder if you really have compassion for parents who don’t have a say in forced gender mixing when it comes to bathroom use. I assume that is why the school has taken the stance it has, which I think is the right one. It makes reasonable accommodation for the student, but does not infringe on the expectations of other parents. Basically, I understand you hold your beliefs strongly because of your experiences and perceptions, just like I and others have our own perceptions based on who each of us is.

            So, to answer your question on what I think would happen. 1) It forces parents to answer difficult questions that they don’t believe their kids are ready for. “Daddy, why are those two guys holding hands?” “Why does that boy think he’s a girl?” Nothing wrong with that, good questions that have to be discussed at some point, but as parents, we have the right to raise our kids as we see fit, unfortunately right or wrong, and educate our own kids on complex social issues when we feel our own kids are ready. Unfortunately, modern society is “forcing” sexualization on our kids at earlier and earlier ages. We teach our kids to be tolerant and accepting of any differences, but don’t feel it is appropriate to teach sexuality–hetero OR homo–to a prepubescent child.
            2) I have three kids. The are curious and open about “differences between boys and girls,” much to their mother’s chagrin sometimes. There is a lot of discussion and joking about body parts. Some appropriate, some not…we, as parents, are there as much as possible to teach appropriate boundaries. Appropriate boundaries, I think, are why bathrooms are separated by biological sex. I believe these boundaries are necessary because kids, by nature, are very curious.

            I believe this is more than teaching kids tolerance. It is forcing parents to discuss complex, sexuality issues that kids that age are not ready for.

            • I think you may be seeing complex problem where there isn’t one. Children are generally raised to see holding hands as non-sexual, a thing that people who are in love with one another do. When they ask you why two men are holding hands you can tell them that the two men love each other, the same way you’d tell them that a man and a woman holding hands love each other. If they say that someone else told them that two men can’t love each other you just tell them that person was mistaken. It’s not a deep social or sexual issue.

              As for why the boy thinks he’s a girl, why not just tell them that she is a girl? Kids get confused over things like haircuts all the time. I know it took me a while to understand that some girls had short hair and some boys had long hair, and it wasn’t traumatic at all for my parents to teach me that. Explaining that the best way to know what someone’s gender is is to ask them politely is a good life lesson in general. You don’t have to tell them anything about genitals except that they don’t always mean that someone is a boy or girl. (And reiterate the point about asking if you can’t guess on sight.)

            • Tobias, I think it seems so simple to you because it is your reality. It seems so normal, and perfectly fine because it probably makes up a lot of your identity. Your perception of the world is your reality, just like it is for everyone else. But for a lot of people, it is not viewed that way. Parenting may seem so simple to you, but it is my reality, and from my perception, it is much more complex. I’m not trying to say I am right and you are wrong, rather our views of the world are much different…what seems simple to you may not be for others, and vice versa. I can say for me, this issue is a no-brainer. It is refreshing, though, to have a rational discussion with someone on a controversial topic. Best wishes to you!

            • I was just going to thank you for the same thing! It’s been a pleasure talking to you.

              The tips I gave above I took from parents who had had those conversations with their kids. May I ask why the issue feels more complex to you?

            • Tobias, btw, the question about two guys holding hands came from my 8-year-old when we were at the beach. Doesn’t make me uncomfortable, and I just said something like, “Some guys like other guys” or something lame like that–I blew it off. If you’ve ever dealt with kids, you know that one question is never the end. A conversation about homosexuality is not something I think a child of that age is ready to have, and as a parent, that is my prerogative. Instead, we demonstrate through our words and actions respect and tolerance for everyone. Even if I knew exactly what to say, that simply is not knowledge I want to lay on my kid at that age. Parentin’ ain’t easy. I already see others on here ready to pounce on me because they disagree with me, and say my feelings are fear based. It is just more intolerance that other people can have differing views. It reminds me a lot of my Christian friends who think the reason I don’t believe in God is because I’m somehow threatened or scared, or uninformed.

            • Derek, I think Tobias used language that was far more polite and diplomatic than is warranted in your case.

              You wrote: “I feel bad for this kid, mostly because his parents seem to be forcing a gender identity on him.” This one sentence displays a high level of disrespect (by ignoring the child’s expressed gender identity) and willful ignorance (by insultingly suggesting that this is all her parents’ whim, as if obtaining a Gender Identity Disorder diagnosis were effortless).

              I also cannot help but notice your sense of entitlement in thinking that society should have the responsibility to protect you from being asked questions by your children that you would find uncomfortable, yet accommodations that help others to avoid clinical depression are unreasonable.

              (As a cis man I don’t feel any need to be diplomatic in this discussion.)

            • Tobias, btw, the question about two guys holding hands came from my 8-year-old when we were at the beach. Doesn’t make me uncomfortable, and I just said something like, “Some guys like other guys” or something lame like that–I blew it off. If you’ve ever dealt with kids, you know that one question is never the end. A conversation about homosexuality is not something I think a child of that age is ready to have, and as a parent, that is my prerogative. Instead, we demonstrate through our words and actions respect and tolerance for everyone. Even if I knew exactly what to say, that simply is not knowledge I want to lay on my kid at that age. Parentin’ ain’t easy. I already see others on here ready to pounce on me because they disagree with me, and say my feelings are fear based. It is just more intolerance that other people can have differing views. It reminds me a lot of my Christian friends who think the reason I don’t believe in God is because I’m somehow threatened or scared, or uninformed.

            • Tobias seems to be intelligent and tolerant of other viewpoints. It seems you are not. Do you have kids? Do you know any 5 and 6 year-olds? I know many, I’ve raised a few, I’ve seen my boys play dress up and play with dolls. No big deal…if you think a child that age has the mental capability to come to the conclusion that the are another gender than they are born, then you are wrong. Are you a child psychologist? If you are, then maybe I’m wrong…here’s the thing…kid’s are pretty stupid. They do and say a lot of things that are cute and hysterical, yet completely crazy. A parent’s job is to guide and teach. So do I have a high level of disrespect for a 6 year old’s expression of gender identity? Hells yeah…they don’t have any fucking clue what that is. Same level of “disrespect” I would have if the kid said they needed medical marijuana, or didn’t think school was right for them, or whatever crazy nonsense they have no idea about. As for entitlement, nice try…I may not be a perfect parent, but no conversation with my kids makes me uncomfortable nor do I expect any special treatment for my child. If my child needed special accommodations to avoid clinical depression, I would do everything I could to help them, but I assure, I would not put the burden on others.

            • Some people, kids included, have a stronger or weaker sense of their own gender than others. I was mostly able to ignore mine (in no small part because my mother was very into the whole “girl power” thing and I didn’t want to be a boy because that would mean being second best), but it hit me full-on when I was a teenager. I remember looking in the mirror and trying to visualize myself in ten years, and all I could think of was a man in a pinstripe suit carrying a briefcase. I still don’t have a strong sense of gender – I identify as “not a woman” more than “a man.”

              Many trans people, however, do report knowing when they were very young, which doesn’t seem improbable to me at all. There’s always a fuss made when a kid says they know something about themselves that’s outside the norm, like kids getting same-gender crushes, but it’s not uncommon for kids to get opposite-gender crushes either, which isn’t seen as weird for some reason. Likewise (and this doesn’t seem to be your position, because you – and correct me if I’m wrong here – seem to believe that no kids know anything about their gender at that age), it’s generally accepted that a kid who identifies strongly with their assigned gender is normal while one who does not can’t know what they’re talking about.

              And I’m really not any more intelligent than anyone else. I just have a larger stock of patience because I’m at a point in my life where having these conversations no longer bothers me. A few years ago I would have been raging all up and down this thread too.

            • “I still don’t have a strong sense of gender – I identify as “not a woman” more than “a man.”

              I’m similar. People seem to forget this is gender *dysphoria*, not gender euphoria.

              I identify extremely strongly as not-male. And somewhat as am-female. Enough to not identify as neither anyways.

              Being seen as male or female in general society also doesn’t bother me anymore (I’m finishing my 7th year of transition next month April 13th 2005, commemorated by getting my ears pierced, because I knew I’d remember the date then). I am comfortable in who I am. But I will indeed recognize willful transphobic treatment for what it is, and be against it for that reason alone (high sense of justice).

              @Derek

              ” I would do everything I could to help them, but I assure, I would not put the burden on others.”

              What burden really? There isn’t any.

  3. As a trans*man I still always prefer gender neutral, unisex, single stalled bathrooms because it’s less uncomfortable/intimidating/god forbid someone sees that my feet are facing the wrong way in the stall. But this is my choice…if someone, especially someone as young as Coy, wants to use whatever bathroom they prefer, then who really cares. Why are bathrooms such a big deal anyway?

    The worst part about the whole thing really isn’t even about the bathroom. It’s that the district attorney kept referring to Coy as ‘he’ even though Coy is a girl. Coy has a passport that recognizes her gender. Do you even realize how hard it is to change that? ALSO the only reason anybody at that school even knows that Coy is trans* is because she began to change while attending this school. Otherwise no one would ever even have known and it wouldn’t even be an issue right now. Will trans*/queer folk always have to remain in the closet in order to be seen as who they really are?

    • I’m going to nitpick here: The article said Coy identified as a girl all throughout kindergarten. I’m guessing instead that Coy’s doctors recommended that her trans status be disclosed to school officials.

  4. Did anyone watch the video? So if an 18-month old decides they want to shave their face like daddy, or their legs like mommy you give them a razor? If they want to drink beer or wine, you let them because you don’t want them to be depressed? On first reading I mistakenly thought the child was born with both sets of genitalia. I reread and was surprised to see he was born a male. How do these parents know this wasn’t just a phase? They jumped on board, full speed and created this problem. An 18-month old is not capable of deciding sexual orientation. This is wrong on so many levels.

    • This isn’t sexual orientation, it’s knowledge of which sex you belong to brain-wise (and brain supplants genitals except for solely-reproductive purposes, no other reason ever to even mention it).

  5. Lloyd, do you mind if I ask if you had a sense of gender when you were five? Some sense of being a boy?

    • Speaking for myself, I don’t think I had a sense of gender when I was five. But then, I don’t think I have a sense of gender now. I’m aware that I have a penis, and I remember always having one, but beyond the familiarity which comes from years of exposure to the obvious physical evidence (and of course the way other react to me), I wouldn’t say that I have any further inner sense of maleness. I thus always find it quite mysterious when trans people talk about knowing what gender they really are. Perhaps a clearer account of what’s going on with this inner knowledge of gender could help understand whether it could happen to a five year old or not, but in the discussions I’ve seen it seems to be falsely assumed by the trans people that everybody has this sense so there’s no need to explain it.

      • It’s a body-map feeling, so you won’t know it til you’re missing it. People who are amputee know that their bodymap says their removed limb should still be there, they can even feel pain in the absent limb. It’s similar, and not always about genitals. It’s also about hormones. You’ll know soon enough that hormones are bad for you the moment puberty starts, but all childhood you still have hormones (if only less), so you still have that nagging feeling something BIG is off. You eventually peg it as trans if you have enough information.

        You might have a glimpse of it if you get misgendered often.

        And it has nothing to do with gender roles, toys, clothing, etc.

      • Jameson says:

        Imagine how you would feel wearing a dress. I mean really wearing one, not as a drag outfit, but being told that you had to wear a dress to attend a wedding or formal occassion because it wasn’t appropriate for you to wear slacks. Imagine you have to also grow your hair out and style it like a girls. Imagine everyone referring to you as “she”. Would this feel comfortable to you?

        I have had a feeling of skin-crawling discomfort about not just my clothes, but my entire body for most of my life. How I feel on the inside just doesn’t match the body I was given. When I was 7, yes, 7, I remember thinking God had made a mistake when putting the brains into the bodies and my brain had accidentally been put in a girl body and there was some boy out there with a girl brain in a boy body. I was 7, I knew. Luckily for me modern medicine being what it is and living in a country where I have the legal ability to transition, I’ve been able to alter the outside to match the inside and it has been a kind of relief I don’t know how to describe. I’m not sure cis-gendered people will ever be able to fully understand, but I for one appreciate that sometimes they try.

  6. Massachusetts passed a law barring discrimination against transgender students in public schools. The state department of education finally released guidelines for implementation of the law about two weeks ago. These guidelines can be found in this 11 page document http://www.doe.mass.edu/ssce/GenderIdentity.pdf

    From the Boston Globe article: http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2013/02/17/transgender/FHmjIUlSZo0LCMy02xF97M/story.html

    “…transgender students may use bathrooms, locker rooms, and changing areas for the gender with which they identify, but those who are not comfortable doing so should be provided with alternatives, such as a unisex or nurses station’s bathroom. But transgender students cannot be denied access to their preferred bathroom or locker room because of other students’ discomfort.”

    Too bad Coy doesn’t live here.

  7. Jameson says:

    I’ve been thinking about the conversation in the comments here and I am particularly struck by a sentiment which is basicly, to paraphrase, if you have a penis you use the mens roon and if you have a vagina you use the womens room. As a trans male I am very troubled by this. I am a post op (top surgery) trans man who takes testosterone. This means that I have no breasts, I have full facial hair, I have arm and leg hair, and my voice is below the natural range for a woman. Now according to the logic expressed in the comment, because I have a vagina I should walk into the womens room despite the fact that from ALL outward appearances I am an adult male. Do you think the women in the womens room are going to feel safe when I assure them it’s okay because I don’t have a penis? Do you think I am safe? And when security comes in how do I explain that no really, it’s okay, I don’t have a penis even though my ID says I am male without having to strip completely naked?

    And it’s even worse for trans women. Imagine what happens if an adult woman walked into the mens room. Is she safe just because she has a penis? Or is she likely to be met with verbal abuse at best or physical violence (which is actually the more likely outcome according to the statistics)? Do you think Coy will be safe in highschool walking into the boys room?

    Meanwhile I’m not sure how my presence in the mens room makes anyone uncomfortable since they have no idea I don’t have a penis or how a trans womans presence in the womens room effects the other women since they don’t know she does. When I go to the bathroom I’m just another guy in the mens room, and Coy is just another girl in the girls room.

    • I do think the whole “men will beat women!” think is overstated.

      The whole reason men will beat trans women is transphobia, not some sort of pass to be misogynists in their bathroom. And the reason drips of misandry (yes men can be misandrists) and homophobia – because they beat trans women because they see them as failed too-feminine men (and not as women).

      Even worse, they perceive them as imposters, because of essentialist notions of sex (women have something “special” besides menstruation and hormones, and brain sex identity, which makes them female, and this “special” could NEVER be had in someone with a penis, because god, or biology, or feminism (radical feminism usually, but also goddess feminism) says so. Removing the penis doesn’t fix it either, not for those ideologues. It’s all about the initial state of genitals or upbringing from day 1 (for TERFs).

      I have nothing against the possibility of unisex bathrooms everywhere. Heck remove male and female rooms, put only unisex rooms, and I’d be happy. I don’t think more rape or violence would occur. Maybe people would be less uptight about being in the presence of the other sex. Maybe they would see the other sex as “other people like me” as opposed to “those weird people over there” (and this applies to both sexes, segregation only adds mystification to sexes, for no good reason – some people say that without it, no one would be attracted, bullllshit).

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Kathryn DeHoyos writes at the Good Men Project: [...]

  2. [...] Transgender First-Grader Banned From Girls Bathroom [...]

Speak Your Mind