Tag Archives: transgender children

Be Who You Are by Jennifer Carr

aAuthorHouse, 2010.

Transgender – Preschool/Elementary School

Nick has felt like a girl for as long as he can remember. When he tells his parents, they tell him they love him any way he feels. Nick’s parents let him grow his hair, buy him dresses, and when things start getting difficult at school, they talk to his teacher, and take him to a therapist who supports children “who felt like they were born in the wrong body.”

Nick continues to identify as a girl, and tells her parents that she doesn’t want to be called a boy, or be called Nick anymore. They support her decision to change her name to Hope, and when she wants to meet other children like her, they find other families with children like her that she can play with and talk to.

Hope’s little brother, Will, is relieved that they can still share a room, but doesn’t know what it will be like to have a sister instead of a brother. The family goes to the library to check out books about sisters and brothers loving each other, which makes him feel better.

Will has questions for Hope, which she always answers, and he is relieved when she says she is the same person as always and will always love him.


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Filed under **** Highly recommended, 2010s, Infant - Preschool, Soldier Girls and Dancing Boys

The Adventures of Tulip, Birthday Wish Fairy by S. Bear Bergman

aFlamingo Rampant, 2012.

Transgender – Preschool/Elementary School

Tulip, an adorable little fairy with a bow-tie and a top-knot, has a job as a Birthday Wish Fairy. He sorts all the birthday wishes into piles, dealing with the easy ones, for a new doll, or truck, first. He sends wishes for new brothers or sisters upstairs to the department that handles things like that, and for those who wished not to have a new sibling, the wishes are washed into their underlying concern – to still have the love and attention of their parents. Some wishes he can’t do anything about, like making parents recover from illness, or to stop hitting, or to bring more money to the family, but even for these children, Tulip tries to find small ways to brighten their days.

For children who wish they looked different, he devoted a good fifteen minutes of smiling to each, so they would feel better about themselves and realize they weren’t so different from anyone else.

But then a wish that stumped Tulip arrived. A boy named David had wished on his birthday candles to become a girl named Daniela. After thinking for a while about this wish, Tulip consulted the Birthday Wish Fairy Rule Book, and followed the instruction to meet with the Wish Fairy Captain. She explained to Tulip that some children are born into bodies that don’t match who they are inside.

Following the Wish Fairy Captain’s instructions carefully, he granted Daniela the bravery she would need when people didn’t understand her, Clear Sight Sparkles for Daniela’s family so they can see her as she really is, and Teaching Toothpaste for everyone, so they can help Daniela’s teachers and doctors understand her, and lastly, a special Wish Fairy Kiss, so she will know that her dreams will come true if she holds onto them.

Somehow, although it’s not in his job description, Tulip continues to visit Daniela and her family to see how they’re doing and to help them if he can. One day, the Wish Fairy Captain calls him to her office to ask why he’s doing this since it’s no longer Daniela’s birthday. Tulip explains that he thinks Daniela and her family can use some extra help now and then, and the Wish Fairy Captain smiles and offers him the job of Gender Wish Fairy.

While wordy for the youngest audiences, this is a delightful book for families with transgender children.

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Filed under **** Highly recommended, 2010s, Infant - Preschool, Soldier Girls and Dancing Boys

Fox Bunny Funny by Andy Hartzell

fox_bunny_funny_coverTop Shelf Productions, 2007. ISBN: 189183097X

I have to say at the start, that I am not generally a fan of graphic novels, particularly those without words. However, I think Andy Hartzell has taken on a difficult topic and portrayed it metaphorically in an interesting and successful way.

This story features the life of a young fox, who while able to pass as a successful fox, wishes s/he were really a bunny. During childhood, our protagonist is caught cross-dressing as a bunny, and is packed off to fox camp where horrible and soul-destroying activities include target practice on bunnies, harassing and hunting bunnies, and eating them.

Finally our miserable fox friend escapes to a land where foxes and bunnies are friends, and where s/he has surgery to be transformed into the bunny of hir dreams.

Transgender teens will immediately understand the situation of our young fox, and may find this book a useful way to explain their feelings to others.

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Filed under **** Highly recommended, 2000s, Infant - Preschool

10,000 Dresses by Marcus Ewert

10,000 Dresses

10,000 Dresses

Seven Stories Press, 2008 ISBN: 1583228500


Every night young Bailey dreams about dresses, one on each step of an endless staircase, each dress more beautiful than the last. But when she tells her mother, and father, and brother about the dresses, and asks for help in making them, they scold her, saying “Dresses aren’t for boys.” Bailey explains that she doesn’t feel like a boy, but they each respond that she is and “that’s that!” Finally Bailey finds a friend who is also fascinated with dresses and they begin to create some together.

This is the first book depicting the experience of a child who is transgendered, or at least gender-variant. The experiences of the child, and the initial reactions of family members are accurate and realistic, as is the importance of finding an understanding friend. The illustrations are child-friendly and colorful. The story is simple and appropriate for children as young as three or four, inviting discussion between parent and child. Such books are sorely needed, and this one is a real success.

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Filed under ***** Must Read, 2000s