The Keith family in Farmington Hills, Michigan, has made the tough decision to publicly announce their support for their transgender teen’s transition to become a boy. Roz and Richard Keith love their daughter, Olivia, with all their heart, which is why they aim to make the transition into Hunter as smooth as possible.
All too often, stories of transgender teens are reported due to a tragic event, as was the case of Leelah Alcorn. Rather than allow their child to meet the same fate, the Keith’s have chosen to support Olivia as she becomes Hunter, and use the experience to draw the family closer together.
As Olivia grew, they noticed that she was not the most girly of girls. Instead, she chose rougher play like the boys her age, according to Click On Detroit.
“Olivia was definitely not a girly girl. She was very much a tomboy. Really rough and tumble, would much rather jump all over the babysitter and camp counselors and play with Legos or what people would call more traditional boy toys.”
Olivia’s parents did not think too much of it until one night while bathing her. Roz, her mother, was helping Olivia bathe when she said, “Mom, I’m a boy.” Roz and Richard did not think about the comment too much at the time. However, two years later, Olivia approached her mother and shared that she wanted to have a “more masculine look” and admitted to being transgender. From that moment, Olivia had begun the transition into Hunter.
According to the Jewish News, Richard and Roz were not all too shocked at the revelation, but Richard wanted to learn more about the transgender transition that Olivia/Hunter was going to experience. As a result, he attended a two day conference to wrap his head around it.
“I had to wrap my head around it, psychologically and intellectually, but I felt Hunter needed all the support he could get. And we’re not just trying; we’re doing that.”
The Keith family knows that the transition from Olivia to Hunter will be full of roadblocks and met with ridicule and ignorance. However, as a family, they hope to work together to make those instances more bearable and the journey more pleasant overall. All the while, the family hopes to share the experience with the world, giving inspiration to others that are experiencing a similar situation.
Hunter hopes other parents of transgender kids will support their child’s decision to make the change in their lives. For those that are apprehensive or think it is just a phase, Hunter has a final question.
“For the people who say they’ll never accept their kid if they came out to them as transgender. Do you love your child or do you love the image that you had of your child?”
[Photo Courtesy: USA Today]