Time Accounting in the World of Gender
Like other parents of a teen caught in the steel grip of gender ideology, my life has been turned upside down. People not familiar with this issue would be stunned about how much time this tragedy can eat up in a day. I can’t speak for every parent stuck in this living nightmare, but I’m betting there are similarities.
First, there’s the inordinate amount of time we spend scrutinizing our kids. We replay our interactions, laser-focused on whether we’ve seen any shift in direction, any sign that they’re inching closer to, or further from, the major decisions that will have grave permanent impacts on their young lives — impacts they are too immature, too naive, too anxious and afraid to understand. This focus requires a level of intensity that leaves little room for other things, like our jobs, or our spouses or partners, or our friends or, oftentimes, our other children. We are too busy processing what they chose to wear or not wear, looking for subtle changes in mood, examining and re-examining what they’ve said, hoping to find openings, places where we can hold them just a little longer before they jump back on their single-minded track.
Then there’s the usual calls and emails to clinicians, begging for a meeting. Or an explanation. There’s the futile searching for an available therapist who won’t give our kids that extra shove off the gender cliff.
We squeeze in a few moments to look for classes and lessons to fill up our kids’ time and brains, distracting them from the poisonous rumination normally overtaking it — classes and lessons that our kid very likely won’t (but just possibly might!) be willing to participate in.
There’s the writing or journaling, documenting this grim, grief-filled slog, either for posterity or some far-off, mythical criminal prosecution for medical negligence.
There’s the time spent trailing our kids on social media, looking for interlopers and enablers.
And then there’s the ultimate time sink, reading and researching, keeping up with any developments, honing our newfound expertise in deciphering the intricacies of scientific studies, reviewing expert testimonies, dissecting the legalese behind the ever-expanding legislation set on eroding our ability to protect our children from their own bad judgement.
On top of all of that, there are the blessed support groups, desperately needed to remind ourselves that we are seeing things as they are, even when those around us aren’t seeing them at all. Reassuring us that we haven’t been transported (for lack of a better word) to some parallel Orwellian universe where the obvious has become unmentionable, and where realities are deemed fantasies, and fantasies are deemed true, and noble, and brave. Where caring for your child has become abuse.
There isn’t much of it, but in my spare time, I obsessively check my phone and computer for anything relevant. I read one support group’s Facebook posts, I check another group’s Team posts, I check Discord, I subject myself to Twitter. Then I catch up on the podcasts. And I check my email. Like constantly.
Some of this is just the normalized bad habits associated with living a digital life plus the need for the hit of neural reward juice I get when something good hits my inbox, but a larger part is likely the same reason other parents of a child (or children) who has latched onto a new gender identity spend their days like I do. I am desperately looking for a sign of hope. Word that the New York Times or the Washington Post, or maybe Rachel Maddow — anyone to balance out Fox News and the Daily Caller — has “broken” some hot “hidden” story about how the medical community has followed up their complete failure of the opioid epidemic with the cosmic-level betrayal of vulnerable, confused children by rescuing them from reality and leading them on the path to sterilization and mutilation.
Or that SOMEONE has figured out a way to reach our unreachable kids, to get through to them that they’re perfect just the way they are, that we love them fiercely, that we would walk barefoot over glass shards to get them real help if only they’d accept it, and that there’s no magic potion that will turn them into more than a cosmetic facsimile of something they are not and will never be.
Or that there has been a great truth-telling online by all of the posers and groomers and the young people who were looking for validation that they hadn’t made a terrible mistake by encouraging others to follow in their footsteps.
That finally the dam was breaking and that our kids were coming back home to us. Maybe terribly, tragically, irrevocably damaged, and maybe needing tremendous support to make things as right as they could be, but home. Finally home.