Last edited by Ahalfdozen; 28-07-2016 at 18:13.
I'd be looking at some counselling for him. He's obviously having trouble reconciling it and might need some help to work through it? I agree that it's one thing to be parading around in a dress and loving it, and another thing entirely to be feeling like he should be embarrassed, but doing it anyway.
agree with the counseling. I know he's still very young but I wonder if there are any support groups for transgender kids here (unsure where you live OP but it could be worth googling). I've heard of these kinds of support groups for kids in LA but don't know/have not heard of anything like this in Australia.
As you've noted, the fact he is hiding it, he's embarrassed, he's ashamed etc makes the behaviour something that needs attention from a professional. Poor little guy, I hope counseling helps make him feel better.
I would suggest maybe think of some positive ways you could encourage him to talk about it.
So, if you see him wearing pink tights instead of saying "are you wearing pink tights?" (Because, let's face it, you can see that he is). Maybe say, "those tights look lovely and warm, how do they feel?". Get dad to have some positive talk too "hey cool tights". Just smother him with positivity, make him feel like what he is doing isn't wrong. Maybe have a open conversation about going out together to buy clothes he might feel comfortable in "I see you like wearing Dora undies, instead of taking your sisters, how about we go and buy you some of your own".
Councillors might be good too but it can definitely help if everyone just makes tiny changes to wording.
Even if you're not concerned about him wearing his sisters clothes, he might confuse your concerns about him being secretive, with feeling like your upset that he is wearing them in the first place. So maybe limit questions about "why is he hiding it from you" as that might be too confusing right now. Just keep it really positive for now. It will help so much.
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I agree with everything above, it's not the fact that he dresses up, but that he is struggling with it so much, and felt the need to hide and feel ashamed. If this was my child I would definitely seek out counselling but moosey's advice is also fantastic.
Please let us know how he goes!
Big hugs xx
Haven't read any responses. Why are you subjecting your son to a Spanish Inquisition over what he is wearing? That will make him feel like crap and damage him for god knows how long. Why not compliment him in his pink tights?
Leave him to be. And only seek assistance if he is displaying stress within himself that is not induced by yourself or someone else .
Last edited by VicPark; 27-07-2016 at 21:35.
I hardly see how asking him a few non-accusing questions in order to see how he is feeling is a Spanish Inquisition. How else do you suggest I try to engage with him? It is stressing him. He is so edgy while he is doing it, he's struggling with hiding it, and even today he had friends over and hid in the spare room so he could wear a dress without them seeing. I think a lot more "damage" would be done by not trying to help him open up about it. I want him to know that I am interested and care about what he does. It's not like I sat him down and interrogated him. We asked him some questions, the same way we would if he wasn't eating his lunch or if he was uncharacteristically quiet. We asked questions because we are concerned, because he is clearly stressed. He was stressed before we asked anything, and as I mentioned, he is now happy to talk to me about the undies so my line of concerned questioning seems, to me, to have made him more comfortable.
We have since, offered to buy him things in his own size seeing as he is 6 and his sister is 3 and consequently her clothes are way too small for him. He just pulls back into himself though and doesn't want to talk about it or go shopping etc.
We have always been careful to not ever give off the impression that wearing "girls clothes" is bad for him to do, but I do wonder if maybe a boy at school saw the pink undies and said something.
I think there are some really good suggestions here. Maybe you could just go and buy him some Dora undies and a sparkly dress in his size while he's at school one day, and leave them in his room for him to find when he comes home - then no one is making a big deal of anything but he will know that you are ok with him wearing these things if he wants to.
It might just be a phase, maybe he's transgender or maybe he just likes wearing girls clothes - but if you allow him space to explore that part of himself, don't make a big deal out of it and be there to talk if/when he wants to, then you're handling it as best you can. And it sounds like you're doing this already which is great! As far as seeking professional help, it might be useful but if he's not ready to talk it won't be. He might prefer to talk to someone that's not you or your DH or he might just not want to talk full stop. All you can do is float the possibility and see what he says - and if he says no, let him know the option is still there if he changes his mind.
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