How Do You Handle This?

My younger daughter is completing her student teaching this June. Last night she was in tears over a situation one of her fellow student teachers has.

In the class in which this other person is student teaching, one of the boys was gone for a few days to have surgery . . . and came back to school a girl.

This child is in the first grade.

Besides the subject of parents actually allowing this for a child who is obviously far too young to be making such a decision, my daughter is unsure how to handle such a situation if it ever happens to her when she begins teaching full time. Would she have to treat such a child like he’s a she? She says she can’t morally do that. And how in the world would she explain this to the rest of her students?

Any suggestions?

Was there perhaps some surgery to deal with an intersex situation, a chromosomal abnormality?

She should continue to treat the child as a boy because he is a boy. Mutilating his body and stuffing it full of chemical hormones won’t change that.

Unfortunately, if she does decide to live in the real world, she’ll probably be vilified by the poor student’s parents, who have obviously abandoned reality to live in the child’s fantasy. If she persists in calling him a he, she’ll probably be fired for not being sensitive or politically correct.

I know this isn’t very happy advice, and not a happy prognosis, but our society has lost their collective mind. People who live in the real world are vilified, and people who embrace fantasy and irrationality are triumphed over the crowd. My advice to her is to seek a job at an orthodox Catholic school; hopefully if this situation comes up there the school will back her adherence to reality instead of caving in to the irrationality.

As for explaining it to the other students… I have no idea. I can’t think of anything that wouldn’t be unduly cruel to the young boy even though I know it’s not really his fault, it’s his parents’. His parents, rather than actually trying to help their child, decided to give in to his fantasies and irrevocably destroy his body.

Again, I know this all sounds very cruel, but I just cannot fathom a set of parents that would entertain delusions like this…

I don’t know how she would handle telling the other children anything, but she should treat all children as human beings and children of God & not be concerned with gender. That child in particular may need a whole lot of loving and acceptance.

I asked her that. She doesn’t know if the child was androgynous. It’s not her student; it’s one of her peer’s students.

She very much wants to teach in a Catholic school. That is her first choice, although she doesn’t know if she can get a job at one.

The child is in first grade, not an adolescent.

Oops, thanks for the correction, I’ll see if I can still go fix that.

Woot, hadn’t missed my window for editing. Again, thanks for correcting that for me.

If your daughter cannot adjust to this, then your daughter may need to go looking for employment elsewhere.

Several have suggested that the child may have been born intersex. Why surgery would have been delayed until now is anybody’s guess, but since your daughter doesn’t seem to know all the facts of the situation, then she needs to not judge it.

The child is now a girl, for whatever reason. Your daughter can try fighting that, but she may find herself out of work if she’s viewed as a problem.

I would say that she needs to back up the wagon.

You say she can’t “morally treat the child as a girl”.

Why not?

You freely admit that she doesn’t know all the facts, i.e. was there a birth abnormality, other health issues etc.

Judge lest not you be judged. This child deserves the benefit of the doubt until it is established otherwise.

Seems your daughter is jumping the gun in my opinion.

Barring an inter-sex issue, you are incorrect. Genetically, the child remains a boy. Physically, the child remains a boy. The only thing that’s changed is that surgeons have performed plastic surgery on the genital region, and loaded him up with chemical hormones. No amount of surgery or hormones can change the underlying reality that the child was, is, and will for all eternity be, a boy.

That’s a pretty big IF.

We don’t have all the facts nor does the OP’s daughter.

Interesting that (IMHO) the most charitable Christian post before me (which was apparently posted while I was composing mine) was by a pagan.

Dang. You don’t think my reply was charitable or Christian. :frowning:

Where did I go wrong? :rolleyes:

I thought it was. :slight_smile:

Intersexed issues are extremely rare, so it’s natural not to assume them.

I’m in favor of treating the child well, but if the child is a boy then allow them to pretend they’re a girl isn’t treating them well, it’s feeding into their delusion. If they truly are a boy, not inter-sexed, then feeding the delusion is far more damaging than upsetting them by continuing to acknowledge them as a boy.

As others have said, we do not have all the information; but given that inter-sexed issues are significantly less common than delusions of thinking your a different gender, I think it’s perfectly reasonable to respond under the assumption that they are suffering from the delusion rather than the genetic abnormality.

As I said in my post, I’m not trying to be mean; but we also can’t just ignore a significant problem and pretend it doesn’t exist.


Tell her to move to where ever there is an opening … we need all the faithful, orthodox Catholic school teachers we can get :thumbsup:

The fact that teaching in a Catholic School is her first choice, she needs to fine a way to teach in one. We don’t need anymore teachers in Catholic Schools whose first choice is the public school system and teach in a Catholic school because they can’t find a job in the public schools.

I would like to make it clear to everybody that my daughter in NOT this child’s teacher.

The student in question is in another school and being taught by one of my daughter’s peers. My daughter is concerned only with what she should do if the same situation arises for her in the future.

She is determined to follow the teachings of our holy Catholic Church. She has also wanted to be a teacher all her life and is just a couple of months short of getting her B.A. and credential.

I’ve told her that this situation is not likely to arise for her, but she was in tears last night about how to handle it. She wants to be sensitive and loving for such a child but at the same time uphold the teachings of the Church.

Seeing as she is a student teacher, she will probably have to “go along to get along” and complete her degree. After this, she’ll need to set her ambitions on teaching in only Christian schools who do not allow this stuff.

However, after reading the news item

We will not obey’: Christian leaders threaten civil disobedience if Supreme Court legalizes gay marriage
I thought perhaps there might be a lesson for the students about civil disobedience or Conscience Rights, but that would probably not fly.

Hope your dd finds a great job in a Catholic school after this!


My simple opinion is God loves everyone no matter what. So should we. I know it is hard at times, but if you at least have the desire to love everyone, then God can and will work with that.


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