"Hi, Sharlene. I'm Faline." And so it was that I found myself in the office of the woman who banned me from my son's preschool.

My ex-wife had indicated that he wouldn't be going there next year due to cost, so after I was banned, I decided it was in my son's best interest to keep quiet for this school year. Although it goes against my nature. I saw no good that could come to him by me raising a fuss and pulling him out after had had already started. And he wouldn't be going there in 2011-12, so I felt as OK as I could with it. In the time since I wrote the post I linked to above, I have worked through that anger, and didn't care to dredge it up again.

Well, guess what. H. called me up yesterday and asked me my thoughts on G. attending this school again. "Absolutely not," I said. "I do not want my son attending school in a place where I am not welcome." We went back and forth for a while and I told her that I'd need to get back to her on it, as I needed time to think. "Well, the deadline for applying is tomorrow." Thanks. Thanks for that. Thanks for painting me into a corner.

I thought about it and decided there's no way that I would allow this. I felt my anger rising as I drafted an email to H. explaining why I would not support him re-enrolling, and if she did register him there against my wishes, I would make a loud fuss about it. It felt awful. Decided to sleep on it. I woke up this morning and there was something holding me back from sending the email. I didn't feel like I had done everything I could to avoid this. Maybe, just maybe, I could salvage something out of this train wreck. Perhaps I could keep him there at a place he loves, keep me happy, keep the school administration happy, and pave the way for the next parent like me. So I respectfully emailed Sharlene this morning and requested a meeting in the spirit of cooperation, in person, to see if we might come to an agreement/understanding that would make everyone comfortable with G. returning for another year. I've gotten past the anger I felt back in October when this all happened, and now it was time to put the past in the past and work towards the future.

I was heartened to hear back from her very quickly that she'd be happy to meet with me. We scheduled a meeting for 2 PM. I'd characterize it as a productive and congenial meeting, at times friendly. I felt like we were both making an effort to understand where the other was coming from. I kept things on my son and what's best for him. I did tell her that a place where I'm not welcome isn't the best place for my son, and she somewhat surprisingly agreed with me. After that I tried to work towards what I kept referring to as our common goal of keeping G. at the school next year. I ending up suggesting that I'd be OK with just coming to classroom parties, eschewing things where I'd be "front and center." Pretty much exactly what I did when my daughter attended this school.

Ideal? No. But there are times to wave the blue, white, and pink flag, and this was not one of them. This isn't about my "rights" as a transsexual, as a woman, or even as a parent. It's about what's best for my son, period. What is best, given all the variables, is for him to stay at this school, a school he loves and has a good curriculum, while allowing both of his parents to come and support him. He has enough disruption in his young life so far, being a child of divorce with a transitioning parent. I owe it to him to compromise where it's reasonable. Pulling him out of this school if we can work it out would be cutting off my nose to spite my face, *if* they allow me there. If they don't, he is out of there, do not pass GO, do not collect $200.

I felt like I got her buy-in on my suggestion. The owners of the school are away this week, and we won't know for sure until she has spoken with them, but I think things are going in a good direction. She said she'd speak with them, and give me a call next week. More later...


I hope this works out for your son, Faline (meaning that the school does the right thing). You're right in that this is not about you, but at the same time, your children should not have to attend a school that would not have you as a parent.

I still haven't had to face this as of yet, but it is a situation that is right around the corner for me and I have taken your experiences to heart and mind as we choose the next school for our son. I want the best for him, but I also want to be an active part of his educational life, which means teacher meetings and school activities. If I am not allowed, my son will wonder why his Daddy is not there. He has been taught that there is nothing wrong with what I am doing and it would be sad if the school he went to provided a different lesson.

Do not compromise your ability to be your son's parent and advocate at school.


I know, I know... there's a part of me that wonders if I am giving up too much. But the reality is that me not coming in and reading a book to the class for 15 minutes isn't the end of the world. Me not coming into the class at all, is.

You're very fortunate in that you have a wife who is very supportive of your transition, backing you up every step of the way. I have an ex-wife who registered him for school there next year without consulting me, and would just assume I never come to anything.

It's not easy to balance all this crap. Frankly, it fucking sucks.

The fact is that you give a damn. If H cannot accept that, too bad for her. And it sucks something fierce, but you are doing the right thing the right way. You should be proud of that. I know too many parents who don't give a damn about their kids' educations. There's nothing wrong with caring too much.


Sounds like you did a great job of dealing with a situation that was thrust upon you. You got that principal on your side! At least somewhat. I realize it was a compromise, far from ideal. But you love your son and want the best for him. It sounds like you did right by him without giving up your dignity. And maybe this is the beginning of better things.

The face to face meeting was important, but I wouldn't assume anything by it until they make it clear. Many people in administrative positions are effortlessly two-faced.

And while it's not "about you," there is a lot of "you" that is important to your kids' education. The ability to have TWO involved parents rather than only one can make a tremendous difference. Perhaps more difference than the school itself can make. Something to consider.

You are one good parent. : )

Good luck and I hope this all goes your way, for you and your son. In the future, this may be easier. We can only hope and hope.


So, you are amazing. This entire situation makes me nuts (and angry) as it should have been a non issue all along. You are so....understanding....can I have the name and number of your therapist?

i think you're doing the right thing, teag. i completely agree with you. i don't believe you're giving up too much in this case. if that school is in his best interest, then swallowing your pride in this case is the best thing. However, if she gets back to you and tells you they won't budge, i'd be out. in a hot second. i hope that isn't the case. being patient and non-emotional with these people (like you've been) could be the way to pave the road for others in this situation at this particular school. xoxox

I love to hear you speak of the growth you are experiencing in your transition, it gives me continued hope and inspiration that I'm traveling the road to freedom too.

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