“The literary equivalent of a summer night, a good friend and a gin-and-tonic: Shannon is a deft writer; a natural storyteller with a wicked turn of phrase and frighteningly specific memory...”

Opt-in to the Shannon Colleary Communiqué to have both the Funny & the Wise delivered to your inbox weekly!

The Transgender Child Video That’s Gone Viral

The 1999 film Boys Don’t Cry starring Hilary Swank was my first brush with understanding the transgender community. Prior to that I was probably like a lot of mainstream folk. I thought transgender folk were confused, damaged people who needed therapeutic help.

I’m embarrassed just thinking that sentence, let alone writing it down in black and white. I was ignorant.

Since that film I’ve been drawn to transgender stories again and again. I particularly love Jane Anderson’s 2003 tender, reverent film, Normal, about a man, married for 25 years, confessing to his wife and community that he is a woman and the dignity with which he makes his transition.

And now I’m in love with the video that’s gone viral, already over 4.5 million views, about parents recognizing and supporting their transgender child. If you haven’t seen it, or are on the fence about the transgender community, this is essential.

Dont forget to Like us on Facebook!


Tags assigned to this article:
good parentingtransgendertransgender child


Write a comment
  1. Monica Epstein
    Monica Epstein 3 June, 2014, 16:44

    Thank you, Shannon, for posting this. What good parents Ryland has.

    Reply this comment
  2. Angela
    Angela 7 June, 2014, 16:35

    Shannon, I’m typing this with tears in my eyes, what an amazing family and story. Their unwavering love, acceptance, support and courage is truly inspiring. Thank you so much for sharing this, I will be forwarding it to everyone. I know.

    Reply this comment
    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 7 June, 2014, 17:03

      Hi Angela — I feel the same way you do. I wish some of their parenting could rub off on me.

      Reply this comment
  3. rana
    rana 11 June, 2014, 20:48

    You were right the first time. Transgenderism is homophobic, the new “gay corrective”, reactionary, and when it’s children who are being told by their parents or the parents church that they are a boy if they want to play with trucks, or a girl if they want to wear pink, it’s child abuse. And you know parents who are doing this to their kids and you haven’t called the child abuse hotline?

    Reply this comment
    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 11 June, 2014, 23:27

      Hi Rana – You’ll be unsurprised to hear that I disagree. The parents of this child seem to be incredibly accepting of the child born into their home. They seem to be acting as shepherds for a personality already formed. As a parent of two daughters I can tell you that they came with their personalities and preferences intact and I’m just trying to not mess them up or change who they fundamentally are. It seems to me the parents of this child are a gift. But we can certainly agree to disagree. I’ve never been particularly good at turning people toward my point of view. I tend to preach to the choir more successfully.

      Reply this comment
  4. rana
    rana 11 June, 2014, 21:29

    Teena Brandon was a Lesbian who wasn’t being supported by the homophobes around her. She wasn’t transgender.

    Little girls who play with trucks and play rough and dress for it are not transgender they are little girls who will grow up to have more than what they look like as currency

    Reply this comment
    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 11 June, 2014, 23:24

      Hey Rana — how do you know Teena Brandon was gay and not transgender? I’m genuinely curious.

      Reply this comment
  5. Caroline chuter
    Caroline chuter 15 June, 2014, 16:21

    Hi Just came across u via google 🙂 my keiron is transgender too male to female, age 8, we support our child 110% and be there no matter what 🙂 if only everyone was as understanding as u 🙂 we are coming across a lot of hate 🙁 xxxxxx love ur page too

    Reply this comment
    • Shannon
      Shannon Author 15 June, 2014, 16:49

      Hi Caroline — Glad to hear you are a powerful advocate for your child. Wish people would take a little time to investigate before passing judgment.

      Reply this comment
  6. Traci
    Traci 20 June, 2014, 22:59

    That was a beautiful story. What awesome parents Ryland has. I’m so glad.
    We could all take a lesson from his parents in compassion, acceptance, maturity…unconditional love.

    Reply this comment

Write a Comment

Your e-mail address will not be published.
Required fields are marked*