If I come out soon I will “emotionally abuse my daughter”! Uh, what?!?

I’m afraid I am rather upset today. I had my latest EAP counselling session in Dublin and left it very upset, and partly stunned. Perhaps it is just a reaction over hearing advice that I don’t like.

Anyway, it concerns my daughter, who is nearly 13. Since I last saw the counsellor she has talked to a child psychologist (without me knowing) because she was “disturbed” by one or two things I have said. The comments that the two of them have concluded are that with daughter going through puberty that she is at her most vulnerable, and that I would be much better waiting until she is 16 (ie over THREE years from now) before I come out; this left me both upset and gobsmacked. Also, what upset me most was a comment that I would be “committing emotional abuse” by telling her so soon, and that “I need to remain a father figure for her as I have a legal right as a parent”.

Although daughter will almost certainly be shocked when I come out, who says I can’t be just as good a parent? Personally, I think I have become a better person as Andrea, and surely it is just as important for her as for me that I become emotionally much happier and more stable?

I KNOW I am on a selfish journey, but the thought of having to keep Andrea on a temporary basis for so much longer is not a thought I feel I can entertain.

10 thoughts on “If I come out soon I will “emotionally abuse my daughter”! Uh, what?!?

  1. Hey Andrea, this sounds really hard and very heavy for you, you have ny heart and feelings for you dear .. but let me see if I can understand that; so if she was younger (like 6 to 9) or older (16 to 18) that would have been OK for her ??

  2. Hugs Andrea – that’s awful. When you first saw this counsellor, I remember you saying she admitted that she’d little or no experience of gender identity issues. I think this proves the point, plus I think what she’s done is bordering on professional misconduct as she’s breached confidentiality without your consent. The BACP Code of Practice permits this only when there is a “risk of serious harm” to the client or others. She clearly hasn’t a clue about trans* issues, and also needs to be reminded about the Equality Act 2010. You’ve every right to report her, IMHO.

  3. My heart goes out to you. i waited until my kids got older but when they became adults i still waited because they said if if i transitioned then I would be deserting my wife. Now i am waiting 2 more years to be me full time but i no longer can wait and will be starting hrt ASAP. Please accept my sympathy.

  4. Hi Andrea. Disappointing I could not chat properly to you tonight in the aftermath of both your revelations to your brother and regarding this matter. Anyway I would think that Ruth has a very valid point, and my suggestion is that you seek also a second opinion from a qualified person familiar with trans issues. But yes confidentiality & trust has been broken and I really get the feeling this person is way out of their depth and comfort zone, but I had an inkling when you told me of your previous session with her that this was the case. I hope to be able to chat to you next week.

  5. Oh Andrea, as I said to you privately, this is very unprofessional and clearly shows that neither your counsellor nor her child psychologist friend have the first idea what gender dysphoria is or what it feels like. I’m giving her the benefit of the doubt in saying that her reaction is based on ignorance and not transphobia, although it’s impossible to rule that out as a motivating factor. There’s never a good time to come out so all you can do is manage your transition as best you can to minimise the fallout for your family. If it’s not puberty it’ll be GCSEs, A levels, university, weddings, grandkids and the next thing you’ll be 70 and still Bob.

    Are you going to continue seeing this woman? I think I would find someone else. Have a chat next time you’re at the GIC and see what they think – you aren’t the first trans woman to transition with an adolescent child.


    Kirsty xoxo

  6. I don’t know if it has as much to do with her age as it does with her maturity and stability to process what you’re telling her.

    Plus , coming out can be in stages rather then all at once. I’ve done that with my son who was 15 when I first started. Give it to her in pieces and only as she needs to know.

    I’ve taken my time with my son because of his own emotional struggles and he doesn’t completely understsnd, but at the same time he’s really protective of me.

    I wish you the best.

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