Mother of Trans 7-Year-Old Shares Her Child’s Story

Nicki Sullivan says her 7-year-old child, born a male, has always identified internally as a female. After seeking advice and support from (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network), last Monday Nicki’s son Eli attended school for the very first time as Ella, a 7-year-old little girl.

“She came back Monday as a girl. New teacher, new wardrobe, new backpack, completely changed. She was introduced as a new student, Ella Grace,” explained Nicki Sullivan in an interview with Fox19 News.

Sullivan says over the last week Owen County Elementary School has been more than accommodating to her transgender child by providing her access to a unisex restroom and doing their part to protect her from potential bullying by other students.

“They’ve been supportive. There hasn’t been any issues with the school at all,” says Sullivan.

Although Ella has been chased on the playground and some children have asked her what she thought were mean questions, Sullivan says that school officials have been monitoring Ella’s interactions with the other kids and has been disciplining those children who are acting out against her.

Some of the parents of Ella’s 2nd grade classmates are expressing bigotry regarding the change in Ella’s gender presentation.

Caynah Lindsey, the mother of one of Ella’s classmates, shared her views: “I’ve told my son to be nice when he sees this boy. I’ve told him to never refer to him a girl because that is not what he is.”

Lindsey also insists Ella’s new name and new wardrobe are confusing to other kids who share proximity with her in school.

“To me, a boy who on Friday is a boy, and on Monday decides to be a girl, to me that’s a major distraction. Our kids shouldn’t have to go through that. It’s one thing when they are older or in high school. They are adults. They can make decisions. But we are talking about a 7-year-old child. How does a 7-year-old know what they want?” Lindsey told Fox19 News.

When asked about dealing with the negative reactions of other parents, Nicki Sullivan responded, “People have said they’re going to pull their kids out of the same class, stupid things like that, but I’m not worried about it. She’s the same kid. Different name. Different clothes.”

Sullivan also claims she has received a number of threats via Facebook from others who disagree with the change in her child’s public gender presentation. But, according to Sullivan, this is about empowering Ella to finally be who she has always been inside.

The superintendent of Owen County Schools, Rob Strafford, has not offered any public comments specific to Ella Grace.

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