About Me

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NSW, Australia
I'm made it past 50! married for over half my life, have 3 kids all grown and I'm loving this part of my life.I was a nurse in my younger days but an unhealthy dose of rheumatoid arthritis put a damper on my career,so I'm at home with the internet.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Becoming Chloes Mum

10 months ago I had 3 kids,2 boys and a girl,now I have 2 girls and a boy.
It's been an interesting journey, one I didn't plan on ,yet here I am.
Here on blogger and in some forums I've been congratualted for being a great parent.If there was a medal though,I think I'd have to give it back. I don't feel like I've done anything extrodinary. I love my children. beginning. middle. end.

I told my kids they could tell me anything.I told my kids they could be anything. Those words came back to haunt me June last year. I had to put my money where my mouth is so to speak. Adn I did. gradually.
At first I did some ostrich mothering,head in the sand and changing the subject as if not listening would make it not real.My son was so excited by what he was about to embark on that it was all he could talk about and I went thrugh the motions for a little while,not really believing. Within a few months though, it was obvious that my son was living a lie and really meant to change his life to her life.

My child was one of the kids that overcompensate with maleness,so that no one would know,so by the time he decided to make the change, apart from long hair and a habit of shaving under his arms, he was very very male. Motorcycle, heavy metal male.
This made it very hard to understand,but inch by inch I got there. I now realise how unhappy my son was,Chloe is really happy,smiles and laughs and it's a joy to see.

The thing that made it extroadinarily hard for me is that I thought I had a very close relationship with all my kids. So..How could I not know? How could my son have been so very unhappy all these years, and I not know? It made me question myself as a mother and his dad had the same feelings as a father. These thoughts make me more sad than any thing else other than the death of my mum so I try not to go there to often.
I have said something I can't take back and that is that had I known when he was say 10 i would have taken him to a pshychiatrist. I've done much reading since then and understand that it is a medical problem not a psych one and just hope Chloe forgives me for that one.
It has been a fascinating journey watching a very male person change like a caterpillar to a butterfly into a young woman. the hormonal changes have softened her face,the laser hair removal has been amazing.My son had a 5 o'clock shadow at about 11am,very hairy!!! chloe has lovely skin and has just a little hair above her Italian hand me down...I have the same,so ahs her sister LOL
Her breasts are not growing quickly enough....a puberty lament lol and she has some dreadful weepy mood swings from the HRT. All the emotion of a 15 yr old girl...glad shes not living at home LOL
At 22 she is making her way into the world at full speed ahead. she was only on HRT about 6 weeks or so when she changed her name to Chloe legally, changed her licence, work and super details and started living full time as Chloe. Brave ,Brave Chloe, but it has gone well,work has been fantastic.Chloe has a growing circle of friends where my son was pretty much a loner.
Her biggest concern now is her voice which is still very manly and she gets very dissapointed if she's reffered to as Sir or Mr.
There have been some tricky moments. I was trying to help chloe get a room and was ringing around and explaining that chloe has a male voice and is in transition(some ppl adveritise for female boarders)Most ppl were great but one asian lady was no no I do not want this ..I want a real girl!.Then there were the ones who answered the ad,which had explained everything but still when Chloe was asked for and she said in her male voice "thats me" she got hung up on.Most of the time she takes this all in stride,but every now and then it gets to her.

If you see someone you think perhaps used to be a guy,err on the side of caution and refer to her as Miss,don't stare obviously trying to figure it out,she is trying so hard to "pass",so make her day and say Miss :) I know it means the world to Chloe.

As I refered to before it hasnt been all peaches and cream. I was loathe to tell my husband that it was all systems go. He was very quiet, I didnt push and let him ask questions when he was ready and then he'd be quiet again for a while. He is now,and this has taken all 8 months, referring to his son as Chloe.For a long time he jsut thought his son was wearing dresses,he didnt get the whole change and the hormones.And then it clicked. He saw a couple of stories on the TV,listened to me read some of the forum posts. He is and advocate of the underdog and when he heard stories of discrimination and parents disowning thier kids he was angry. He has channelled this anger into acceptance and would be chloes biggest advocate if she was discriminated against or picked on,he'd be there. But... and thers a but.. i'm still not sure if he'd go to the movies or shopping with her just yet,he still seems frightened of telling his family as if it has somehow will make him look like a bad father. For fathers especially I think it is hard to get past a sense of wrongness. me, I wish I lived closer and could do more with chloe, I went to visit a few weeks ago and we went out to lunch with her girlfriend and her mum.It was a great day and I finally saw Chloe with out seeing my sons shadow. She is becoming a lovely young woman and i really wish her and Jess the best.

There is a lot more I could write,its where to start lol
perhaps I'll take questions and write about them one at a time.
If I can help anyone who is a parent or in transition in any way,ask away :)


  1. Wow, wonderful. You both are great parents, sorry but I have to insist, hehe! This kind of change is SO hard for parents to accept. Religion and conservative backgrounds make this harder, but ultimately this is the test of a parent, I believe. Mine have failed. I'm always around if they want to take the test again though.

    Voice is so tricky, and it's taken me years. I know you don't know what my voice sounds like, but I don't think it's bad at all. I practiced by singing, believe it or not. Shaina Twain is easy to sing to and not super-high in pitch. I graduated to Kelly Clarkson and Hilary Duff. I'll never be able to do a Mariah Carey squeal, but that's okay with me, lol. Part of it can also be psychological. For years, I could sound SO girly over the phone, but couldn't achieve that pitch when talking face to face.

    Congratulations for being a great parent. All you need is love, and the willingness to try. Why can't all parents realize that?

  2. What a wonderful mother you are and have been. I loved reading your (and Chloe's) story. Trust me when I say that Chloe is so lucky to have grown up in the age of the internet and more open minds than we had 30 years ago.

    The voice can happen, with practice. If a voice coach is not available or affordable, there are some great CD's available on line. I have found that mannerisms and inflection are more important than pitch.

    Keep writing!

    Calie xx

  3. Thanks amy and Calie.
    My only experience with trangender was going to see Les Girls in Sydney when i was 17!
    the show was created by Carlotta back in the early 70's.Carlotta was Australias first bottom surgery recipient.she still runs her show travelling the country. She is the inspiration for the movie Priscilla.funnily enough I read her biography about 12months before Chloe made her change.I have always admired Carlottas attitude to life and was always thinking grrr whenever the snip and tuck jokes were landed at her feet.Myabe I should do a blog on Carlotta :)

  4. Your daughter is very lucky to have you both as as parents.

    I think it takes some learning and getting used to. All parents are going to misunderstand some stuff and say the wrong things. What matters is that you continue to grow and learn.

  5. What a wonderful mother you are - Hugs.

  6. How incredibly loving you and your husband are. I wish all of you, and particularly Chloe, the very, very best.


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