An incredible mom has thrown her 6-year-old transgender daughter Avery her very own gender reveal party. While Zoe Petitt and her husband have always been open-minded and raised their two children with clothes and toys that she assigned no particular gender to, she had no idea how important her willingness to accept and love her kids as-is would help her youngest be her best, truest self.
When they were two years old, Colton asked to wear a princess dress. As Zoe shared on Facebook, she didn’t think twice about getting them the dress. They were always into things that would typically be seen as more “girly,” but that never mattered to Zoe – Colton was just being themselves. “At two my child requested a princess dress and without blinking it was in the shopping cart. Their bedroom was half cars and half baby dolls and princesses. They liked singing and performing so we signed them up for musical theatre and when the teacher said ‘oh the boy costumes are over here!’ They didn’t flinch, pointed to a purple princess dress and said ‘that’s ok I want that one!'” Zoe recalled. “I don’t believe clothes or colors or toys have genders. Cory and I have always made that clear and kept all the choices open.”
It soon became clear that Colton was struggling. In September 2019, Zoe’s husband Cory told her something horrifying: Colton thought they should “stab [themselves] in the throat” because they were different. “While pulling in the car line to pick up my tiny human Cory called me,” she shared. “[He said], ‘Just so you know, this morning, Colton said “my life didn’t turn out the way I planned. I think I should just stab myself in the throat.”‘” Zoe was beside herself that her beautiful child could feel this way.
Zoe immediately sprung into action. She called the pediatrician, a psychologist, and anyone else she could think of to try to get to the bottom of this. How could Colton feel this way? Did she do something wrong? After taking a deep breath, she decided to talk to Colton, and while it took them a while to open up, they eventually let their mom know how they were really feeling. “I was supposed to be a girl but I’m a boy. So I think I should just stab myself in the throat,” Colton repeated.
Admittedly, Zoe wasn’t prepared for this. “As open-minded and knowledgeable and empathetic as I thought I was – as much as I believed in breaking gender roles and stereotypes – I was not prepared. But we drove 30 minutes to the GAP and we went dress shopping. And the whole way there I told her about how she CAN be a girl. That people feel the way she does. That we have friends and family that were born and people thought they were one way but they always felt another,” Zoe wrote. “And I swear there was a little lightbulb of hope that went off in her brain. We went to Barnes and Noble and bought every book I could find (there were unfortunately only 3) and we read them that night. And a week later sitting on my bed, quietly reading one of the stories to herself she said, ‘mom. Thanks so much for teaching me about transgender. It really made me feel like I’m not alone.'”
This wasn’t easy for Zoe at first, but she loves her child more than anything. Zoey admitted that she cried a lot about Colton’s admission as she was somewhat attached to having a son. However, she now has a beautiful daughter named Avery and seeing her happy is more than Zoe could ever ask for. “I cried because I KNOW that my child’s life is going to be so SO much harder than other kids’ lives now. I cried because I know I didn’t understand before and now so many other people who didn’t understand are going to target their lack of understanding at my baby,” she shared. “But then I stopped crying. Because as much as I feel I’ve struggled, it will be so much harder for her. And while we already have a few people in our lives who are vocally unsupportive – we have an INCREDIBLE, AMAZING group of people that have never made her feel more loved.” You go, Avery!
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