Thomas Lobel of Berkeley CA, aged 11, is now known as Tammy: He’s in the process of becoming a female. Adopted son of 2 lesbians, The Daily Mail reports that his moms, Pauline Moreno and Debra Lobel, support their decision to allow the child’s gender reassignment claiming that children with identity disorder are more likely to commit suicide.
The couple adopted the boy at age 2, and by age 3, they claim that Thomas told them, in sign language, that he was a girl. Things took a turn for the worse when at 7, the boy threatened to genitally mutilate himself. Moreno and Lobel finally took action. Pauline Moreno recalled their decision to let the boy transition.
Never comfortable in his own skin, she said his spirits were lifted once he was allowed to dress like a girl, wearing bras, headbands, and the like. “He was in his own world just completely detached and that was a problem we always had was getting Thomas to participate in life,” she said. “What we saw emerge when Tammy was allowed to be Tammy is, “Whoa!”… It was an immediate transformation. She was so giggly and she was now interacting she was now making it a point to defend herself.”
What began with cross-dressing, took on a new dimension when Thomas’ mothers agreed to let the boy begin hormone-blocking drugs this summer, designed to prevent the onset of puberty. The Mail states that the hormone-suppressant, implanted in his upper left arm, will postpone the 11-year-old developing broad shoulders, deep voice and facial hair.
Naturally, Moreno and Lobel have come under fire for allowing a child to undergo such a controversial procedure. Moreno said even friends and family disapproved exclaiming, “Everybody was angry with us. ‘How could you be doing this? You might be ruining his whole life!’” But the pair stands by their decision based on a statistic that 50 per cent of transgender youth will have had at least one suicide attempt by their 20th birthday.
Moreno continues, “What is so frightening to me is that you would be willing to say ‘no’ just because you don’t like it – even though your child could lose their life? She adds, “The protocol now is to transition these children as soon as you can make a diagnosis, because otherwise they end up being not one thing or the other… because they experienced puberty.”
Wed in 1990, Lobel and Moreno have 2 older sons, as well as grandchildren. They admit that they struggled to come to their decision – and assert that their sexuality was not a factor in little Tommy/Tammy’s decision. ‘It was odd to us,’ she said. “Even though she has lesbians as parents, this is all new to us in every possible way. We know what it’s like to feel different – we’ve got that one. But to feel like you’re not in the right body was just something we could not put our heads around.”
The Daily Mail provides a brief explanation on how Thomas’ journey to womanhood is to play out:
• Tammy Lobel’s hormones are being blocked by an implant on the inside of the 11-year-old’s upper left arm, which must be replaced once a year.
• Ms Moreno explained: ‘In other words, she will stay as a pre-pubescent boy until she decides and we feel that she can make this decision about surgery.’
• His parents say the hormone treatment will give him time to figure out if he wants to fully transition to being female or go through puberty as a boy.
• By age 14 or 15 the device will need to be removed so that Tammy can go through puberty, Ms Moreno said.
• If he chooses to stop taking the drugs, he will undergo natural male puberty at a later stage and his future fertility would not be impacted.
• Should their son decide to transition to an adult female, he can take female hormones as well, which would raise his voice, allow him to grow breasts and develop other feminine physical characteristics.
Speak on it Clutch. With their lives potentially hanging in the balance, is it wrong for parents to allow children with gender identity issues to take the journey towards reassignment? What’s your view on this matter of controversy?