From the very beginning I called Kris my little changeling. There was always something about my middle child that was a mystery to me. Although some of the mystery has been solved, that feeling lingered even throughout his transition. And so it came as no real surprise when Kris texted me that he didn’t want people to think he changed his mind but he was actually non-binary or genderqueer.
Let’s hit the PAUSE button there for a minute—–
While my computer was having its own nervous breakdown, I tried to sort out my thoughts and figure out what I was feeling. Yeah, well, that’s not happening so what’s to follow is just me giving it to you raw and uncensored.
I haven’t done much research into the terms genderqueer and non-binary. While I know what they mean, I don’t feel like I know enough. Not when I have a child who identifies as one or both. It wasn’t a real surprise when Kris told me. As Kerri, he was never a die-hard girly-girl and as Kris he is definitely a unique individual who is not a typical young man. But let’s think about what I said. “Girly-girl” “Macho man” Those are extremes in both instances. And I can honestly say as a woman I do not embrace all things feminine. Growing up although I had all the average girl stuff my mom never dressed me in pink or rarely purple… Really! My other two sons, Michael and Andrew, while both male are as different as night and day. Kris fits right in the middle of them nicely. When he transitioned, there were parts of Kerri that just faded away and there were parts that stayed. Some of those might be things that are attributed more to girls than boys and while I noticed them, they were Kris. So no, this wasn’t news to me at all.
But then different thoughts popped into my head- and these weren’t new thoughts. They were things that peeked out from behind my everyday thoughts and I knew that I had been pushing them aside for months, maybe even the past year, now. For the past year Kris has been very erratic taking his testosterone. He had switched from shots to gel and had given various reasons. And as he has played cat and mouse with T these past few months (unknown to me), I’ve had instances where I was catching glimpses of Kerri. I have to admit it messed with my head more than just a little bit.
Was I imagining things? Did Kris look more feminine? (Not really) Was I really hoping deep down inside for Kerri to come back? Was Kris sending out mixed signals or was he changing his mind? Could I ask him? (NO) It was my imagination, right???
Then 2 weeks ago we went to the doctor and Kris asked that his level of testosterone be lowered. His doctor cautioned him that at such a low dose, it might trigger his period. Kris responded that it did not bother him.
And then the text.
I did tell Kris that I wanted to clarify a few points so I can explain it to a few people, who would want to know- like our very important closest people- his brothers, grandparents,….his dad. And for those other people (relatives) who might not say anything to him but will make comments to me….if they are speaking to me.
We have a starting point.
He prefers his full name and male pronouns. His gender is on the outer edges of male. While this is hard to explain, I do get what he’s saying.
I have to begin doing my homework on all things non-binary and genderqueer and how it all fits or doesn’t.
I know that as he lets his hair grow, he will confuse some people. He already does.
Bring it on!