Andrew Guy

We speak to our NSW #YourChair winner Andrew Guy about his journey as a trans person #TheProjectTV

Posted by The Project on Monday, September 7, 2015

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Parental Decisions

I've been thinking today about children and adults having been one of both now. And I realise I have a whole new load of unanswerables to a fairly simple ideology ...

In summary, still watching Nip Tuck (up to season 4) in my recovery period, and the scenario presented in the episode (bare with!) is that the plastic surgeon and wife have just had a child with a hand deformity (there is a big proper name for it). As you can appreciate Dad surgeon is gung ho motivated to surgically reconstruct his boy's hands so he can be as normal as possible asap to place him in the position of best opportunity for fulfilment and success in life (for e.g. learning how to play catch, family eating time, less bullying etc etc - please take the metaphor here - could be any age experience we look forward to in child rearing that involves hands!). 

The mother on the other hand is concerned about the trauma of surgery that could "manifest itself into later life issues" as per what 'new age' health suggests. The child is too young to be able to express pain verbally. The nanny is a dwarf (love script writers) who has suggested this point of view to the mother, saying the child's instinctive response to the surgery will be to think it's being killed (aka elicit a fight or flight instinctual response). AND of course she's just also started to have romantic feelings for the nanny (reciprocated) and they 'sensually kiss' (bad wife bad wife!). ANYWAY this has obviously led her to an experiential discovery that 'our child needs to be able to find those who will love him for who he is' (she's crushing on the dwarf) - boom *crowd goes wild*!

SO ... when one starts to reflect on one's own life and thinks back, you have child in the early 80's who is trans, most likely scenario ... 'parents do know on some level but deny it as what do you do in the early 80's - aka not today's medical world or consciousness' ... most likely solution "child will surely grow out of it with our parenting support" ... however on deeper level, different thoughts:

Option A: 'father wants it ignored and suppressed because surely child will be strong enough to have it 'not an issue' and will present better as an adult with greater chance of fulfilment and nourishment anyway from success of career, partnerships, friends, normal society acceptance and popularity, money, yadda yadda'

Option B: 'mother possibly thinks a bit deeper, allows the child to express themselves more truthfully seeing it as possibly more healthy and nourishing. It will of course bring challenges and big societal judgemental projection onto the child, but also attract truer people so the bonds will be really real and nurturing. The challenge is real though, if you allow the child to exist as is, it will grow up in a tougher world around it, with less instinctive acceptance and life path opportunity (debate-able but also yeah 'cut the crap' and it's absolutely true based on real life experience of the world around us!). I guess we can hope the world is slowly really changing, I'm not so sure today (maybe that's just me).

So at this point it's safe to say from personal experience, option A does indeed last for a while, well as long as the child has the strength to endure the pain of a life with an element of falseness to them and huge trauma to deal with that's developed alongside. I lasted 34 years, no idea if that's a good or bad measure (but it certainly brings with it a real chance of the child ending their own life, from too much pain of ignoring the issue, no qualms about it as that external nourishment doesn't last - for me anyway).

Option B: being who you are, does indeed attract truer people to you and a realer existence in life that does provide a deeper nourishment and fulfilment. However it also does have it's daily pain and challenges and own niche painful problems, and rejection that you don't get with the life and opportunities you do with option A. It also leads to a painful life existence BUT with the pure freedom and joy that is not be-known to Option A. If you can do this option along with finding a way to attain the perks of Option A I think that wins. Internal integrity and outer materialistic reality which is deemed 'normal' - definitely possible this day in age I think.

So at this point my only conclusion is; when you have a child, can you be a parent where you can forgo the motivation to 'give your child the best you think you can and parent (direct) them to take and deny the parts of life that give them the better opportunity as per what society dictates? or not ... and do you agree or do you just go for option A and hope for the best. I say this as possibly the side effect of doing is that you are magnifying painful experiences either way and also limiting your child a tad in who they are instinctively at their personal best (not yours or their teacher's etc etc). This too however I'm sure will bring a new set of problems. I have no answers.

End mind discussion today! 

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