Confronting the stigma of being transgender in America

Updated On May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST
1 / 10
An American couple has become a lifeline to other parents confronted with their children rejecting sexual identity dictated by their bodies. For months in the Lemay home, the same phrase was repeated over and over by their troubled young child, barely more than a toddler, who showed growing signs of depression.’It is a mistake. I am not a girl, I am a boy.’ That convinced the Lemay family that Mia should become Jacob. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

An American couple has become a lifeline to other parents confronted with their children rejecting sexual identity dictated by their bodies. For months in the Lemay home, the same phrase was repeated over and over by their troubled young child, barely more than a toddler, who showed growing signs of depression.’It is a mistake. I am not a girl, I am a boy.’ That convinced the Lemay family that Mia should become Jacob. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

2 / 10
Mimi and Joe Lemay live in a large home similar to hundreds of others in the fashionable, family-oriented suburb of Melrose, north of Boston. They are parents of two daughters, ages eight and four, and now a seven-year-old boy, born Mia in 2010 but who officially changed his name to Jacob at age four. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

Mimi and Joe Lemay live in a large home similar to hundreds of others in the fashionable, family-oriented suburb of Melrose, north of Boston. They are parents of two daughters, ages eight and four, and now a seven-year-old boy, born Mia in 2010 but who officially changed his name to Jacob at age four. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

3 / 10
Nearly three years have passed since the Lemays accepted Mia would transition. Their circle largely accepts Jacob, but Mimi admits there were ‘some tough moments’ and ‘days of genuine grief’ along the way. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

Nearly three years have passed since the Lemays accepted Mia would transition. Their circle largely accepts Jacob, but Mimi admits there were ‘some tough moments’ and ‘days of genuine grief’ along the way. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

4 / 10
Seven-year-old transgender boy Jacob Lemay poses for photos in the yard of his home in Melrose, Massachusetts. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

Seven-year-old transgender boy Jacob Lemay poses for photos in the yard of his home in Melrose, Massachusetts. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

5 / 10
Jacob’s 40-year-old mother, who was raised in an ultra-Orthodox Jewish community that she left as an adult, says her own rebellion helped her navigate her son’s transition. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

Jacob’s 40-year-old mother, who was raised in an ultra-Orthodox Jewish community that she left as an adult, says her own rebellion helped her navigate her son’s transition. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

6 / 10
After his transition in June 2014, Jacob changed schools and is now accepted as a boy by classmates who have no idea about his previous identity. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

After his transition in June 2014, Jacob changed schools and is now accepted as a boy by classmates who have no idea about his previous identity. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

7 / 10
With the help of the school district, principal Mary Beth Maranto organized training about transgender students and gave teachers an opportunity to ask questions ‘and become more familiar with this new part of our culture.’ (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

With the help of the school district, principal Mary Beth Maranto organized training about transgender students and gave teachers an opportunity to ask questions ‘and become more familiar with this new part of our culture.’ (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

8 / 10
The Lemays don’t know what will happen when Jacob reaches puberty and if he will want to start hormone therapy with a view to having surgery. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

The Lemays don’t know what will happen when Jacob reaches puberty and if he will want to start hormone therapy with a view to having surgery. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

9 / 10
But in the meantime, the couple has become a lifeline to other parents confronted with young children rejecting the sexual identity dictated by their bodies. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

But in the meantime, the couple has become a lifeline to other parents confronted with young children rejecting the sexual identity dictated by their bodies. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

10 / 10
On social networks as in seminars on transgender issues, or in the bosom of LGBT rights groups, they speak frequently about Jacob’s return to happiness. ‘We saw how much hostility there was towards the idea that a child may be transgender,’ says Mimi. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)
Updated on May 19, 2017 10:47 AM IST

On social networks as in seminars on transgender issues, or in the bosom of LGBT rights groups, they speak frequently about Jacob’s return to happiness. ‘We saw how much hostility there was towards the idea that a child may be transgender,’ says Mimi. (JEWEL SAMAD / AFP)

SHARE
Story Saved
×
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
My Offers
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Sunday, September 25, 2022
Start 15 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Register Free and get Exciting Deals