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Preteen comes out

(10 Posts)
MonkeysMum75 Sun 15-Oct-17 21:19:40

I have been a lurker on here for a while but have never posted. Tonight my 11 yr old daughter told me she identifies as "non-binary" and "gender fluid" and I think I messed up. I have known she prefers girls for a while, and I fully accept that. I think hormones and puberty have a lot to answer for so I decided not to make a big deal out of it, in the knowledge that things may change as she gets older. But non-binary has thrown me for a loop! I understand what it means, but she is only 11. The internet has a lot to answer for! We chatted (actually I chatted - no tempers were lost or voices were raised), but I explained that, although I accept she prefers girls, I think she needs a few more years before she can understand what gender fluid is and that how she feels may change daily until her hormones have settled. She was a bit upset (I think because I try to be understanding and it didn't seem to be happening with this topic), but I feel very strongly that she is too young to be even entering into this discussion. Am I wrong? Should I have handled this differently?

MrsPnut Sun 15-Oct-17 21:31:38

I have an 11 yo girl, and my response would probably have been to distract and minimise.
Does your daughter have a lot of acces to the Internet? Because my daughter wouldn’t have the slightest clue about being non binary despite having a much older sister.

I’d be really honest and tell her that it’s all a bit much for you to take in right now and you need to think about it.

MonkeysMum75 Sun 15-Oct-17 21:37:59

Thanks for that - am feeling a bit overwhelmed and I really DO need to have a think about it. Also need a large alcoholic beverage!

Iamagreyhoundhearmeroar Sun 15-Oct-17 21:40:37

She prefers girls? How does this make her gender fluid or non binary? hmm.
Time was an 11 year old would not have heard of either term.

EveryoneTalkAboutPopMusic Wed 18-Oct-17 22:50:45

Coukd you reduce her access to the internet or put up some really robust parental controls?

BubblyCat Wed 18-Oct-17 23:06:37

Agree it’s a tricky situation, but think about it this way - if years down the line, she decides actually she isn’t non-binary or gender fluid, will having supported her through feeling that she was have made a difference? I doubt that supporting her could cause any harm, but not being supportive could definitely effect your relationship

Have that drink OP, and then tomorrow make sure your DD knows you’re there for her no matter what smilewine

Ohyesiam Wed 18-Oct-17 23:20:23

Just tell her that no matter what she labels herself, you will always accept and support her. She's confused, and probably overwhelmed.

Dawn1999 Thu 19-Oct-17 09:59:00

My boy is ten and has decided he likes boys and wants to be a wrestler. I just think they'll be into many ideas and things before they become what they become. As parents we just want him to know we are there for him whatever. He's a loving boy and we just want him to be in a good place and eventually have a nice partner and not in turmoil or a battle. I never thought he would be thinking about wrestling but I think we knew he might like boys. Fine with us. smile

MonkeysMum75 Thu 19-Oct-17 19:21:22

Thank you all so much for your kind words flowers.

I did have a large drink! And a couple of days later we talked about it (without the shock) - apparently there is a girl in her new group of friends (she has just started secondary school) who identifies as non-binary (DD had obviously latched on to this). She is a clever cookie, but not very worldly wise (as to be expected at 11), so when we talked I suggested she not be so quick to put a label on how she was feeling, and that it was ok to just be her. I also told her she was awesome (which she is), sarcastic (which she also is) and smelled funny (that was a lie wink ). Hugs and kisses all round and normal service has been restored for now.

I am sure this conversation or a variation thereof will come up over the next couple of years. I just have to remember to take a breath, take a break and love her smile

BubblyCat Thu 19-Oct-17 19:59:35

MonkeysMum wine you are the cutest! Nicely handled xx

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