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Son has just found out his girlfriend was born a male...and sort of still is (physically anyway)

(197 Posts)
chchchchchangesusername Fri 04-Oct-13 16:57:38

Right, I am freaking out so please be gentle. I really really thought I was very open minded and tolerant and everything but I am very shaken and tearful. And I'm not completely sure which bit is upsetting me. So bear with me this might be a bit rambling.

My son is 16, he is very much in love with this girl and although they have only been together a month they ARE very smitten. She told him yesterday that she was born a male but since she was 9 she has lived as a girl and been taking meds to...blah blah blah - I cant remember much of the details but it sounded like she knew what she was talking about anyway.

He told me last night. I wasn't much help, much nervous laughter and disbelief on my part. I really thought she was having him on - I even got quite angry and told him if it wasn't true he should dump her for fucking with his head like that.

I asked him how he felt and he said his head was all over the place and that he loved her and didn't want to be without her. So I said ok but this is a massive headfuck and at his age college and his future has to be the most important thing and he needs to keep focussed too.

I am so out of my depth here I cant breathe. I cant think straight. Ultimately I suppose it is up to him...but he does ask for my advice and I really don't know what to say.

I guess I'm worried this might fuck his head up - more than it has already I mean. Now he knows she has a penis ffs, surely that's going to confuse his head. He did cry a bit last night but wants to make it work. It would be easier to get my head around if he was. I don't expect them to last forever but how will it affect his future relationships - I'm over thinking, am I? I don't know.

He is only 16 ffs, this is just too big.

I still cant believe its true. But apparently it is.

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Sun 06-Oct-13 19:19:59

Not particularly Cote, I'm just in an environment where this language is often used so it rolls out quite easily, sexuality isn't my main area but it obviously intersects - Lorde's no single issue lives and all that.

demi- can be used in from of any of the other grouping (demipansexual, demihomosexual, demiheterosexual), but it is still an experience that many feel needs recognition of its own. My main reason for putting that sentence was people kept saying that bisexuals chose homosexual or heterosexual lifestyles, when really there is no such thing as either of those and bisexuality should be recognised in its own right, not as a comparison to others.

Sexuality for many is fluid and professionals shouldn't be gatekeeping sexuality as unanimously "accepted" or "unaccepted" for consenting adults. Professionals don't override people's personal experiences.

CoteDAzur Sun 06-Oct-13 19:08:55

"bisexuals/pansexuals/demisexuals/asexuals are completely different sexualities alongside heterosexual and homosexual and really none should be compared to another"

Ok you have clearly spent about a thousand hours thinking about all this smile but demisexual sounds like many heterosexual women I know and I can't see how that is a different sexual orientation in itself.

I also know quite a few people who have gone through asexual periods in their lives, so does that mean they switched sexualities? In fact, classifying asexuality as a sexual orientation is contested and is by no means accepted unanimously by all professionals.

sonlypuppyfat Sun 06-Oct-13 19:06:16

Oh that's crystal clear....

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Sun 06-Oct-13 19:01:14

Gender binary - in the sentence I used it in, it means outside of the categories of male and female (genderqueer, genderfluid, and so on). As a general term, gender binary is the concept of gender being...well...binary - in two distinct categories. While this concept has become more common through Abrahamic colonization, many cultures and group (and many scientist) would view gender [and sex] to be a spectrum rather than two cateogires.

Retroform - as I showed in a previous link, there is no evidence that intersex people (the term for what you called mixed sex) have any higher rate of being trans* than those who do not have intersex variants that they are aware of.

Retroformica Sun 06-Oct-13 18:49:24

I would have assumed she would have to have been a certain age to convent to a proper sex change - 18?

But maybe she was one of those people born neither a girl or a boy. Mixed sex so to speak and may have been slightly more male initially until medical intervention.

I would let your son make up his own mind. I might ask him if he wants kids in the long term?

sonlypuppyfat Sun 06-Oct-13 16:44:55

Gender binary, what does that mean someone please explain!

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Sun 06-Oct-13 16:35:47

I highly doubt it, that comment comes up often in similar discussions.

However, it isn't about making you feel old, it's about people being able to find people like themselves, being able to have a clarified identity for themselves that is recognized as important enough to be represented and have a term, and having terms people can use in discussion, academics, activism rather than having to spell things out every time a concept is used. Having words is important, words and language and representation have power, and calling it "overboard" and putting your feelings first is quite dismissive of that importance.

Grennie Sun 06-Oct-13 14:48:20

Am I the only one that feels all this labelling has gone overboard? It makes me feel very old.

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Sun 06-Oct-13 14:43:57

I'm just putting point the political argument across to explain why some argue that they chose - it isn't because they have desire or impulse otherwise and choose to ignore that, but that many feel that conversation around debates around sexuality should not centered on the argument of being born with but on consenting adults being able to do as they wish without social or legal problems. It has nothing to do with this girl's situation - she's trans*, that's gender and not sexuality, and trans* political arguments do not include the same rhetoric.

fifi - pansexual is someone who is attracted to people regardless of gender (including those outside of the gender binary), demisexual is someone who only gets sexually interested in a person once they are very romantically involved in a person.

CoteDAzur Sun 06-Oct-13 14:28:05

No, not like a disability but a natural instinct that is cruel and arguably pointless to mess with.

Did the "girl" in the OP choose to feel like a girl in a boy's body?

fifi669 Sun 06-Oct-13 14:27:14

What is a pan sexual or a demi sexual?

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Sun 06-Oct-13 12:20:39

Yes, but those some are of the political opinion that saying people are 'born' gay and thus have no choice is treating it like a disability and that consenting adults should be able to love and live with whoever they want regardless of why without legal or social implications. They say choice because the word choice is powerful and they want to change the frame of the discussion, not because they have any desire to be otherwise.

And bisexuals/pansexuals/demisexuals/asexuals are completely different sexualities alongside heterosexual and homosexual and really none should be compared to another. Bisexuals and Pansexuals do not "choose" heterosexuality or homosexuality anymore than a sexual person chooses to be asexual if they aren't in a physical relationship. Choosing to have a relationship with one individual does not invalidate a sexuality nor does it make it one sexualities lifestyle.

witsalmader Sun 06-Oct-13 07:37:56

Who says they chose to be gay?

Some political lesbians say they choose to be gay.

Grennie Sat 05-Oct-13 23:21:04

Cote - Some gay men and lesbains say they chose to be gay. There is not only one view on this amongst gay and lesbian people. For example, Julie Bindel, and out lesbian and journalist in the UK, says she chose to be a lesbian.

SummerRain Sat 05-Oct-13 22:01:44

Whoops, sorry.... I missed a page before I posted so hadn't seen the OPs update.

She sounds like an amazing young woman OP, and well done to your son for listening to her and accepting her, even though I can imagine how shocked he was.

Good luck to them both flowers

fifi669 Sat 05-Oct-13 21:56:21

I think what was said was bi people can choose to live a gay or straight life.

SummerRain Sat 05-Oct-13 21:56:05

I think a lot of assumptions are being made. I assumed from the OP that the girl was born intersex and had made the decision to live female and has been undergoing treatment to that end.

Whilst it doesn't matter really to the OP's situation I think it's worth remembering that this is a complex situation with many possible reasons and there's really no point in speculating or having arguments about it with the few details here. Whatever the cause this girl has had to go through so much more in her short life than most of us can imagine and she has shown remarkable bravery.

Most teenage boys would have freaked out and then told everyone, I'm not surprised she waited a month to tell him, and it took courage to do so even now as it was no small risk.

CoteDAzur Sat 05-Oct-13 21:36:58

Who says they chose to be gay?

You have been talking about gay people beaten into denying their real urges choosing not to be gay anymore. Not heterosexuals choosing to be gay.

Grennie Sat 05-Oct-13 21:31:35

Of course it is not an illness. And what the church does in running programmes to "cure" gay people, is hideous.

But some people say they were born gay. Some people say they chose it.

CeliaFate Sat 05-Oct-13 21:23:42

"Cured"? Really? Being gay isn't an illness or disease. The Church's involvement in the USA Christian communities is hideous. It's tantamount to kidnap, torture and abuse.

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Sat 05-Oct-13 19:43:38

Just read your latest update. Really lovely smile

GuybrushThreepwoodMP Sat 05-Oct-13 19:38:43

I ink you should be very proud of your son's loving open-mindedness. Other than that just listen and be there for him.

CoteDAzur Sat 05-Oct-13 19:28:44

I might be wrong but my reading of that situation is one of suppressed sexuality. Convinced that they will burn in hell otherwise or some such, these gay men suppress their urges in order to "please God".

The reason why there is so much sympathy for the GF of OP's son is the assumption that sexuality can't just be chosen. If not, "she" is a man who has just chosen to be a woman.

Grennie Sat 05-Oct-13 14:59:35

Cote - The gay men being "cured" is not uncommon in USA Christian communities. I think if you are really gay you can't be cured. But I can see if you are really bi, you could learn to ignore your same sex attraction.

Grennie Sat 05-Oct-13 14:58:09

Most people find out about transgender issues from TV programmes. Sad ly although they can give an understanding of what individuals go through, they also perpetuate many of the stereotypes.

A poster up above said that most relationships don't survive a partner transitioning. This is true. But this is in established relationships where a partner tells an unsuspecting existing partner that they want to transition. It is not surprising that many don't survive when you think about it.

For example a couple married with kids and the Husband tells his wife that he is really a woman and wants to live as one. That would mean that the wife would have to accept being in a relationship with a woman. Most MtoF do have breast implants and take hormones. So a wife who is Hetero and married as she thinks a man, suddenly would have to accept being in a relationship with a woman.

Of course some couples do survive this. But many Hetero partners decide they are not gay and so do not want to be in a relationship with someone of the same gender - no matter how much they might love them.

I do know this is nothing to do with the OP's post though!

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