Family Claims Children, Aged 5 & 7, Are 'Both Transgender'
Parents from Berkeley, California say son and daughter have switched gender
The parents of two children are claiming that both their son and daughter are "transgender," and have "transitioned" from their biological genders at ages five and seven-years-old, according to reports.
Ben and Sara Kaplan, from Berkeley, California, claim their children started "identifying" as "trans kids" from an early age and now live as transgenders after "transitioning" to a different gender.
The family claims that James Kaplan, now 11, who was born a biological girl, decided at the age of seven he had to transition from female to male and started the process at age eight.
Olivia Kaplan, now seven, who was born a biological boy, realized she wanted to switch genders from male to female and begun the "transition" at age five.
The family did not reveal the children's birth names.
The family is now sharing their story, saying they hope to "break the taboo" around changing young children's genders.
Mother Sara told Barcroft TV: "The reaction when people hear that we have two trans kids is shock and awe.
"A lot of people think that it must be a copycat situation where the younger one is just mimicking the older one."
According to the Daily Mail, Sara and Ben check in with their children often, to see if they are happy and confident in the gender they are in, to rule out any kind of wavering.
"We will love and accept them if they come to us tomorrow and say they've changed their mind," Sara said.
"And we will love and accept them if they don't."
For James, being trans is one of the least extraordinary things about them: "Being trans is just a little part of me – there's so much more to me than being trans.'
"I would say we are not different," 7-year-old Olivia continued.
"We shouldn't be treated better or worse."
James was seven years old when he told his parents he wanted to transition from female to male – he was in second grade.
Olivia was four when she said she was transgender – but didn't begin socially transitioning and using female pronouns until she was five years old and entering kindergarten.
In reference to Olivia's transition, Sara said: "It was less shocking because we had just had a child transition – we had educated ourselves about gender.
"We were far more experienced in how to move through the transition as parents," added Ben.
When James was eight, he began socially transitioning.
He had a haircut, shopped for boy's clothes and asked his peers to use male pronouns.
Last year, he changed his name to James legally.
"I have always been a boy," James said.
"Before I transitioned, I had a piece missing and it didn't feel right.
"I was nervous to tell my parents, but when I did, they said they accepted me.
"I was happy because I know a lot of trans kids don't have that, and that's sad."
Olivia, 7, adds: "Being trans means you were born in the gender that you don't feel in your heart – anyone can be whoever they want to be, and it doesn't matter what your opinion is."
When Olivia told James about her transition, he was very proud of how brave she had been.
However, like with most siblings, he admits there was the usual competitiveness.
"I reacted to Olivia transitioning like most older siblings would – even though I'm trans," James explained.
"I was a little confused at first and got a little defensive because I thought it was my thing.
"But after like a day of that, I saw that Olivia is a girl and she always will be."
The first person in America to be legally recognized as #transgender now says he regrets transitioning from his born gender and is campaigning against #SexChange surgeries, laws, and drugs.— Neon Nettle (@NeonNettle) March 13, 2019
READ MORE: https://t.co/FYMcsPk4wG#NonBinary
A month ago, James started hormone-blocking drugs – an implant which prevents him from beginning puberty, notably his menstruation cycle and breast development.
When discussing the decision, James said: "I'm a guy, and if any other guy thought about being a woman, that's uncomfortable."
James is now waiting to begin testosterone, which would be the first permanent action he takes towards transitioning as the process would affect his fertility.
Olivia, however, is too young to have any medical treatment for her transition yet.
Sara explained: "We have lots of time as she's only seven – the first thing would be a hormone blocker and that's not until she would hit the tanner stage two of puberty, so for now, we follow her lead.
"And we parent, for those who think we just follow our children around doing nothing," quipped Ben.
Ben and Sara say they want to educate those who accuse them of imposing an agenda on their kids.
"The reason that we chose to be public at this point is because having two transgender children is not that unique, but it's very difficult to advocate for the second child without it looking like there's a problem in the house," Sara explained.
"It looks like there is an agenda," she said.
"Like the mother is sick, and that's not the case here."
Ben added: "It tends to fall on the mother, and I get feedback that I'm just complicit and just sitting here watching, which is untrue - I am a faithful father, and I love my children dearly."
Naturally, there were times where the process wasn't easy.
"There was a grieving process for me when they transitioned, and it wasn't because I didn't love them anymore," Ben explained.
"We are on the right side of history and we are not going to allow our kids to feel shame or fear based on other people – they deserve to feel loved and accepted."
"We are going about this because we are listening to our children and because are doing a lot of research, which has proven we are doing the right thing," Ben added.