A whole year.
A year since Jeremy reached out and asked to try living as a boy for three years. A year to get used to the idea of calling my baby Jeremy, buying boys clothes, no more budgeting for eyeliner. A year since we were given a D Day of 1 January 2013 to launch into this new phase of our lives.
Last week we had consultations with Jeremy’s pediatrician and psychiatrist. Let’s start with some biology. I was concerned that there did not seem to be any urgency on the part of the medical professionals to start any treatment. I talked about watching Riley on Insight and other programs and wondering if I was being supportive enough (). The pediatrician explained that for male to female transitions there are many biological changes that happen to males between the ages of 16 and 22, where shoulders broaden, Adam’s apples get more apparent, voices get deeper and facial hair gets thicker. Men who make the decision to transition as adults find that these physical manifestations of adulthood cannot be reversed surgically. So in Riley’s case, as she is the same age as Jeremy, there is some urgency for treatment to begin so that she can halt this final stage of puberty.
In Jeremy’s case, medically there is no hurry. He will not get more feminine. To provide us with some reassurance that we are proceeding in the right direction we were told that Jeremy’s pediatrician had attended a seminar the week before in WA where she presented to the group of professionals about medical issues of transition youth. Also presenting was Aram Hosie. Who? Aram Hosie is the domestic partner of Louise Pratt. Louise and Aram were in a lesbian relationship for some period of time. In her mid 20’s Aram determined that she was transgender and started her transition to male. Jeremy’s pediatrician a) had no idea that Aram had once been female and b) was struck by the contentment that Aram displayed while presenting, his certainty that his decision, made as an adult, was correct for him. Each person’s journey is so different so for me it was reassuring to know that there are people out there who make these decisions later in life and if that is Jeremy’s path then he will be physically a convincing male.
Jeremy’s psychiatrist has also extended some practical support. She understands Jeremy’s difficulties in going to school and will support Jeremy doing distance education. We are half way there then in regards to getting J educated in a way that means he can make it to the end of year 12.
Jeremy has new binders and they are fabulous, his pediatrician remarked at how boy like his chest looked.
A whole year. A happy and healthy well adjusted child. It’s every parents wish, and my joy.