Our Transgender Child – Boo’s Story

photo of the author's daughter with the title Our Transgender Child - Boo's Story

When I first started this blog, I told you Bud’s story (When Older Kids are Bullied – A Mother’s Story, I Couldn’t Sleep at All Last Night).  But I have never told Boo’s story – until now.  That is because some key family members were not aware of Boo’s change until a few weeks ago.  But now that it’s all out in the open, Boo has given me permission to talk about being transgender.

Boo was my first child, my first-born baby boy.  Such a doll baby, a little colicky, but with such a sweet temperament.  And so smart!! He won the geography bee at his school in the 8th grade and got to compete against other students from across California at the state competition in Sacramento.

But he always had a hard time fitting in.  In middle school they called him “Encyclopedia” because he knew so many facts on so many different subjects and was willing to spout them at the drop of a hat.  His first year of high school was no different.  He had a few friends who he hung out with at school, but almost no one who would spend time with him outside of that.

The author's daughter, before her transition
Boo at 16

By his sophomore year, Boo was in multiple choirs and had found his niche at school.  The choir kids accepted him as their own and he enjoyed learning to run the sound system at church with Art.

The author's daughter, before her transition
Boo at 18

During his senior year in high school, Boo was assistant stage manager for the high school musical and met his girlfriend, who went to another high school. They were so much alike they could have been siblings. It was also during this time that Boo let us know he liked to dress in women’s clothes.  We were very surprised, but told him it was fine as long as he kept it outside of the house.

Boo left for college in the fall, about 12 hours from home.  We talked once a week or so, by phone and it was a hard adjustment for him.  He did make some friends right away and talked about going to poetry slams and the gym.

He came home for Christmas, and after that school seemed to become more difficult.  Boo told me he had worn a skirt to a poetry slam and was threatened by some men on the bus.  We worried about him, but there was not much we could do from such a distance.

In June we drove to Portland to pick Boo up from school.  He greeted us wearing makeup and a tank top with a pushup bra.  Again we were shocked, but tried to roll with the punches as he treated us to lunch and we helped him pack for the drive home.

Once in the car, Boo dropped the bomb that he was really a girl.  For me, it seemed to make sense.  I can’t completely say why, but somehow it explained the past couple of years.  We had her find a gender therapist as soon as we got home and the past year has been a period of change and some level of acceptance for all of us.  In December, Boo started on hormones and can now pass as a girl in public.  We are still working on calling Boo “she” and have started transitioning to a different name.  It’s not easy, but we all love each other and want to stay together as a family.

The author's daughter, after her transition
Boo 2012

For an update on Boo, you can check out Our Transgender Child – Boo’s Update

55 thoughts on “Our Transgender Child – Boo’s Story

  1. I am so touched and honored that you would share your story with us. I can imagine it must have been difficult. But how amazing that you would work together as a family to adjust. This story of love and acceptance just makes me smile. Boo sounds like a smart and talented woman! And she’s lucky to have you as her mom!

  2. Boo is lucky to have you as a mother- thank you for sharing your story! So glad that members of the transgender community no longer need to hide who they are. It really is all about just loving each other for who we are 🙂

  3. Hi Teresa!

    Dropping in from SITS!

    What a beautiful post. I hope your child appreciates how much you love her. Not all transgender children experience the unconditional love and acceptance. It’s a tough topic but you pulled it off with a lot of grace.

    1. Hi Julia – thanks for the comment!! Boo has moved out to her own place now, but she still comes by our house all the time (mostly for food or money, LOL). She is growing up to be a strong, beautiful woman!!

  4. I’m so thankful to have found you on your SITS Day to have the opportunity to read your family’s inspiring story. As Boo gave you hints over the years, I’m sure it was your loving support and respect that gave her confidence to fully transition into her true self. You and you family are an incredible example of what real love means. God bless you all.

  5. Very courageous of you and the family to share this story. I imagine this has been a very difficult transition, and for Boo, it was probably very difficult to live as a person she felt she was not. Boo is blessed to have a supportive family. Happy SITS Day.

  6. If only all parents loved their children as unconditionally as you do. Boo is and always will be your child, regardless of her gender. She sounds like a pretty awesome person! Thank you for sharing your story.

  7. Wow. I love that she allowed you to share her story. This is such a difficult and touchy subject and I hope it inspires and gives courage to others like Boo out there.

  8. What a brave journey and story for you and your family. I’m so glad that this hasn’t pulled your family apart. It seems it has brought you closer together. May you find peace in this new life and understanding.

  9. I think it’s great that you are sharing this story and even better that you are supportive of your child. I think the more people talk about this, the more likely it will be viewed as the norm. I’m one of those people who don’t need convincing. I honestly believe we are all born the way we are and there is nothing wrong with being just who we are. I wrote a blog on the subject but it won’t show up for commentluv because it’s not on my post page. I added the link to my website address above; but if that doesn’t work, you can find it under my commentary page once you go to my website. It’s titled “I Did Not Choose To Be Straight.” Best of everything to you and your family!

  10. You are so very brave to write this post. I’m sure it will be a comfort and encouragement to others in similar situations. Your child is lovely! Good luck as you face all the changes the future holds. Happy SITS Day.

  11. I can only imagine that the transition has been very difficult for everyone involved, especially Boo. She is very fortunate to have such a loving and accepting family.

  12. You are so courageous to tell this story and it’s SUCH and important one! Boo is very lucky to have you as parents. I think it’s awesome that you “roll with the punches” and have helped her in her journey to her truth and where she is obviously happy. None of this could have been easy for any of you involved and I commend you as a family for working together and being strong! I love it!! What a great family you have. All my best to you and Boo! May you all find your own happiness.

  13. What an honest post–you, Boo, and your family are so courageous in sharing your story. It is truly commendable how accepting you are of her. I wish your family all the best! She must feel so relieved that she can finally be herself in society and not hide it anymore. To have her loved ones backing her up is the icing on the cake. All you need in life is just one person who believes in you–having the family back you up is a blessing. I have a feeling this post will help others who are just like Boo and I hope their families are just as loving and accepting as yours is.

  14. Boo is lovely! Her smile makes my heart feel super happy!

    I am honored to know you in the blogosphere Teressa! You are an amazing Mama and I admire your family’s ability to roll with the changes and accept Boo for who she is!

  15. I really wanted to send a few word’s of understanding and care from a stranger. I knew as a child that there were more than two sexes. I had an awesome uncle who was so obviously in the wrong body, but he was driven away by his four macho brothers. It was not his time. I also have a good friend who has a child born without any sex organs and the only option at the time was to “create” female organs so that was what they did, but she is so obviously a male. Your daughter’s courage is admirable and your love for her is so beautiful. I pray you all have a peaceful journey.

  16. Teressa, what an amazing story of acceptance and love. Your family has had quite a journey this year. I know you’re stronger and closer to one another for it.

  17. I’m so glad you guys are sharing your story. We love you!! HUGS!!!!

  18. As a transwoman in Portland, I can only tell you how much your love and acceptance of her will mean. You are quite literally saving her life by showing her that you care. The major cause of death among transpeople? Suicide.
    Many parents turn their backs on their children when they find out they are trans.
    You are doing something, by simply accepting her and loving her, that will set her on a course for the positive 🙂

    1. Thank you for your comment, Dominique. I hope that Boo can meet positive trans influences like yourself to help her along in her journey.

  19. Teressa,
    This was a wonderful entry about your daughter and what she is dealing with and what you’re dealing with as a family. I am trans myself and beginning to start the process of transitioning as your daughter is.

    It is a hard road as I’m finding but I’m hopeful that in the end it will all be worth it.

    I hope to see more about you and her as your family progresses along this journey.


    1. Allison – thank you for the comment!! We don’t really know any other people in transition so it is nice to get perspective from someone who is going through the same thing as Boo. We will try to keep everyone updated as Boo is willing.

  20. Your daughter is very fortunate to have such a supportive parent. I’ve been transitioning as an adult over the last 3 years and all my parents and most my family have managed to do is distance themselves away from me.

    Her courage to come out to you while so young is telling on how much she trusts you and the rest of her family.

    I can imagine the worry and fears that must cross your mind as a parent, just know that the world is changing, thankfully, as this issue is becoming one that is no longer an issue hidden from society.

    1. Tori – thank you so much for the comment!! It’s nice to hear from someone who is going through the same thing as we don’t really know any other people in transition. I hope that your family can come to be supportive of you and realize that you are still the same person inside that you have always been.

  21. Thank you so much for sharing this. I know things for you all have not been easy over the past years and you have rolled with the punches. I commend you for writing this store because I know it will help other’s. you have always been such a dear and compassionate person and I am so blessed to have you as a close friend:)

  22. Your strength and love are definitely an asset to Boo. I know it could not have been easy to decide to share his/her story but you did it with such grace. It’s hard for me to believe that little baby I watched years ago is now a lovely young woman. Bless you all, my friend.

    1. Thank you so much Christy!! The transition is amazing, isn’t it? It was mainly up to Boo whether or not she wanted to share her story and she was gracious enough to agree.

  23. “Just love yourself like no one else”…To Boo!

    I’m “different” but that is what makes me special and the same goes for you!!

    To have a parent like Terresa is a blessing in disguise. I have a 13-year old son. He is my rock and always will be no matter what! (No matter what…could use your advice)

    1. Thank you Melissa!! We all have something in our lives that can make us feel different and unlovable. We should embrace our differences!! And wow, I do not envy you having a young teenager. My youngest is almost 18 and I am so glad those early years are over. They’re way more fun to look back on than when you’re actually going through them, LOL. Email me anytime you need to vent. 🙂

  24. Thank you for sharing your family’s journey with us. Boo is a gorgeous young woman & a real life hero to today’s youth (and probably adults also). I have had the pleasure of working with someone before/after their transition. It takes an amazing amount of courage, determination & faith.

    1. Thank you Pam!! Boo was very worried about what she would look like as a girl, but she is very pretty and we are so proud of her courage.

  25. Hopefully your words will be able to help others! Thank you for sharing your story.

    1. Thank you, Kellie. That was the main reason for writing this post, to hopefully be able to help another family.

  26. She is beautiful! I’m so glad I got to meet her in her early years and now get to follow her as a young adult as she shares on Facebook. Kudos to you parents for rolling with the change so well. That helps her so much!

    1. Thanks, Deb. I’m glad you were there for her formative years. I’m sure you helped give her the self-confidence she needed to come out.

  27. Awesome post. You are a wonderful and understanding parent. A lot of people would never understand what is going on with a trans. That you do is a gift to be proud of and proud of Boo.


    1. Thank you, Jadette. Not sure how wonderful I am, but definitely trying to be understanding. And we are very proud of Boo, especially for agreeing to have her story told.

  28. What a great story of acceptance. I’m glad Boo will be able to make some sense of herself and her life. I wish the best for all of you.

  29. Bravo to you Teressa and to Boo for showing so much courage and for being herself!! That is all any of us can do, be ouselves. I am sure that this post of yours will also help someone and that is a wonderful thing too. Lots of love Auntie D.
    I finally get to see my sister on Friday…..Yeah!!!!

    1. Thanks, Auntie D. I hope that this post will help another family. Glad that you and Mom get a visit. Love ya!!

  30. Oops hit wrong button. Good Job cousin, Especially with a difficult subject. And what strength “Boo” is showing. My prayers for all of you that she continues in stength in completing her transition and the “world” will continue in its acceptance. We love you all.

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