Mothers Day 2017-Melissa Ballard-Trans Families-Transgender Universe - Melissa Ballard discusses motherhood, being a surrogate mom for transgender kids, and the stresses of mother’s day in the transgender universe. – Trans Families

My Facebook timeline has been a mixed bag of emotions on this Mother’s Day, more so than any I remember in the recent past. Living in the LGBT world makes you realize so many things about these types of holidays and the struggles people face in their lives. I was blessed to wake up to an early text from one of my “adopted” kids that said, “Happy Mother’s Day mama. Thank you for being a part of my life and making me feel loved. Love you!” This made my heart happy starting my own day off like this but also sad in the realization that this kid’s biological mom is missing out on such a beautiful soul! Throughout the day many posts came across FB honoring the “mama bears” that have adopted so many of these kids whose families have turned them away. While we are all fierce supporters of these kids, we would love to be able to help make their mothers or parents realize what they are missing out on.

“Within the transgender space, there are dads whom have physically birthed children.”

Within the transgender space, there are dads whom have physically birthed children. They are no longer considered mothers to those that have accepted their transition. This particular holiday causes a lot of hurt by those that still consider them to be a mom. Reaching out to a trans man on Mother’s Day and wishing him a Happy Mother’s Day is very off-putting and disrespectful of his transition. Even if you claim it to be “accidental” the misgendering is hurtful and causes more issues for the trans person than most people know or realize. When a person asks you NOT to do something such as wishing them a Happy Mother’s or Father’s Day, or states why doing something is bad for them, this should be enough for anyone if they just listen. Why is this so hard for anyone to respect? There is no need for understanding of a situation in order to offer and show respect. It really is pretty simple, and you make a choice in regards to showing anyone respect for a number of reasons on a daily basis. Whether or not a person is trans should make no difference in this type of choice.

Mother’s Day 2017-Trans Families-Transgender Universe - Melissa Ballard discusses motherhood, being a surrogate mom for transgender kids, and the stresses of mother’s day in the transgender universe. – Trans Families

While Mother’s Day can be a source of stress and tension for many, it can also be a source of sadness and depression for those that have lost their mother or mother figure. While we cannot control these losses, we can reach out and console or lift up those that are dealing with these feelings. Sometimes people need space and need to grieve especially if this is the first holiday they are going through since the loss. It may also be the tenth and just as painful as if it were yesterday. This is ok, too!

“Just knowing someone is there for you and loved for exactly who you are is tremendous.”

While no one can take the place of a mother lost for any reason, I would hope that anyone feeling this loss and displacement is able to find a surrogate [parent]. Just knowing someone is there for you and loved for exactly who you are is tremendous. Knowing that you are the person that makes someone feel this way is amazing. I want people to know they can be loved, are loved, and will be loved. Maybe you can be that person, if even for just one soul that needs to know they are LOVED.

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Melissa Ballard is a native Texan with a wonderful husband, Ken, transgender teenaged son, Ashur, and a quirky daughter named Kennedy. When not struggling with multiple sclerosis or chasing her husband while cycling for Bike MS, she is advocating for trans kids and their rights. In early 2015 a group was formed as a social connection for local transgender kids and their families and soon after www.dfwtkf.com was born. In just under a year, the social group has grown to more than 100 active members including parents and siblings of trans and gender non-conforming kids. Speaking to others and letting them know they are not alone is one of her greatest goals and will continue to be a focus in the future.