Dear Child,

We loved you before we even met you. And once we laid eyes on your chubby cheeks and tiny nose, our hearts pulsed with that love. You have brought us so much joy, even through these rough years, and we know you will continue to do so. 

We will support you in whatever you do and whoever you are and no matter what you identify as. 

We’ve always believed in letting you follow your own path. But to be honest, we thought it would be about who your friends are, to participate in sports or dance, career choices, to get married or not, or to have children.

We never imagined it would be about that you’re neither boy nor girl. 

I will admit we are a little reluctant to fully accept this.

It’s not that we would love you any less or think you are less of a person. We want you to be sure this is you. 

You have a habit of diving headfirst into interests until it consumes you. You soak every aspect of it in until one day, it’s gone. We want to be sure this isn’t one more thing you immerse yourself into, then one day, decide it’s not you. 

RELATED: How My Queer, Christian Daughter Inspired Me to Be a Better Human

We want to make sure you’re not just following your friends. We know a lot of them identify as something other than heterosexual. We have no problem with that. Each one of them is a good person, and we’re glad you found such kind-hearted friends. 

We also know that maybe you have been friends with this group for many years since maybe all of you have felt different and have flocked together as to not feel alone and knowing you all accept each other no matter what.

You have always been our little girl even as you grow taller than me. For years, we watched you play with Barbies, dress up as Elsa and sing along with “Let it Go.” You would change your clothes four times a day to wear another pretty outfit. But now you want to hide under baggy clothes and pull hoodies over your gorgeous hair. 

You don’t want us to refer to you as “her” or “she” anymore. Instead, you want us to say “them” and “they.” Understand why we have an extremely hard time with this. Them and they reference multiple people. It was beaten into our heads by every English teacher we ever had. I’m somewhat of a grammar nerd, so this makes my brain hurt. Even though it seems as teens do suffer from multi-personalities, you are still one person. 

Maybe your generation can come up with new pronouns for those like you. Possibly “shim” or “herm.” Yes, I realize they sound absurd, which is why I will leave it up to your community to address this issue. 

RELATED: To My Teen as I Try to Let Go

You came up with a new name you would like to be called. Please understand how much this hurts our hearts. In the months before you were born, your father and I poured over baby names, made a list, picking the perfect one. We love your name and believe it fits you wonderfully.

We don’t want you to label yourself until you’re a hundred percent sure. And maybe you are. Maybe you’ve been struggling with this for years, and we were too blind to see. But we also know these years can be confusing and overwhelming as you try to find your place in the world. 

As you come into your own, we are trying to understand that how we see you is not how you see yourself. And that is OK. Please be patient with us as we learn to adapt. 

We must allow you to follow who you are for you to find true happiness. And after all, isn’t that what every parent wants for their child?

Love,
Mom and Dad

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

BA Eubank

BA Eubank is a wife and mother of five children. She's been through all the stages from colicky baby to one who has left the nest. She squeezes writing in between playing referee and asking the dog what's in his mouth. Her work has appeared on Her View From Home, Filter Free Parents, Blunt Moms, and Red Tricycle. Follow her at facebook.com/writerpoetdreamer

Dear Daughter, Do Not Be Perfect

In: Child, Journal, Relationships

My child. I don’t want you to be perfect. People will say that you are when you are quiet and sit in your chair without fidgeting.  When you get top marks or come in first.  When you meet their every expectation. But you are not perfect. Do you hear me? You are NOT perfect. And I’ll never expect you to be. Ever. It’s important for you to know this because it’s so easy to believe that THAT is what is expected from you. But it’s not. It’s so important for you to know this because you’re going to mess up....

Keep Reading

I Never Knew I Would Be So Lonely Raising Teenagers

In: Friendship, Motherhood, Teen
Teen girl sitting at table

I’ve always heard about the loneliness that comes while raising teens. Most days, I don’t understand it. I don’t understand it because my life with teenagers seems so full, so loud, so in-my-face 24-hours a day. My schedule is packed with sports meets and dress shopping and book ordering. I constantly shuttle long, lithe bodies across town while stopping at the grocery store every day. Someone always wants me to write them a check or texts me to pick them up or yells down the stairs to say we are going to be late. But in the moments when I’m...

Keep Reading

She Needs You To Love Her Through These Difficult Tween Years

In: Motherhood, Teen, Tween
Tween on dock

My 11-year-old daughter came into my room to show me a selfie she just took of herself.  I studied the picture but didn’t even recognize that girl to be my daughter. Gone were the cute freckles that peppered her nose. The features I found adorable on her were filtered out giving way to an appearance that was more mature and counterfeit. RELATED: Dear Daughter, Do Not Be Perfect I told her exactly what I thought. That I liked her natural beauty better. She looked down at her enhanced selfie and shrugged, “Not me.” Exactly. It was not her. A few...

Keep Reading