Harm Jagerman

Why should that moment of awareness also be there on October 26 in more countries?

In the United States, 26 October is National Transgender Children Day. A day associated with this country. Why should that moment of awareness also be there on 26 October in other countries? Isn’t it time to make this an international day?
For the Dutch part of this website, I keep track of commemorative and special days. In the future, I will also do this in English. Then Transgender Children Day will be included. For now, I made a Dutch version of it, because there is none yet in the country where I live.


The day came into being in 2019 when Jill Rubin decided it was time for this. A parent of a transgender child herself, she felt this day was needed. Without detracting from already existing days for the transgender community. It is also good to mention that right away: the day does not detract from those existing days either. They simply continue to exist. Also in all other cases, also in all other countries.

As a parent of a trans girl and a gender-fluid child, I have my motives you might say. Does this perhaps stem from a particular desire to push my children to the forefront? You may be tempted to think so. Before you react this way, please read on.

The day did not just come to fruition. Rubin had to fight for it. Financially, that is. A GoFundMe campaign made it possible. That laid the foundation for this day, which was to be bipartisan. This brings me straight to the point of whether or not I want to push my children to the fore or not. I don’t.

More than awareness and acceptance

The day is primarily about awareness and acceptance. It is a time to think about prejudice, and fighting hate and discrimination. In addition, the second message of this day is that of the children themselves. A beautiful message. Don’t they deserve a day when they are allowed to shine? Where that is sometimes not possible on other days because of this hatred and discrimination? They should. Reality tells us that this is not the case. No, that is not limited to just my children. That is the harsh reality of transgender children all over the world.

As a counter-argument, you could argue that it is weird to limit that positive attention to just one day. Why one day? Why not just on more days in the year? This has to do with causality. There is a relationship between hatred and discrimination. Indeed, from that hatred and discrimination come terrible things. The first things that come to mind are bullying and violence. It doesn’t stop there.

Also, consider legislation. Children who are restricted or whose gender identity is withheld or taken away thanks to legislation. Then you tend to argue that this happens mostly in the country where Rubin lives (the US). This occurs in certain states. Just remember that through various politicians in other countries, this has now become a reality, not limited to the US. It doesn’t stop there. It is no longer just tied to politics.

Nor is it just tied to bullying at school. Online hate, how about that? Society itself, how it views these children and what steps or measures are expected in some cases. Individuals who shout very loudly draw attention to themselves, thereby pointing out the unreal dangers of or to these children. If they keep doing this just as long, politicians will cave in and start listening. Then people will start giving in.

In those cases, it leads to gender identity being taken away or diminished. Then it leads to exclusion from medical care. Actually to a dehumanisation of persons. Simply based on who they are.

Gender dysphoria in children is a reality

Gender dysphoria in children is a reality, not a myth. Only it doesn’t stop there. A lot of people only think about this. People don’t think beyond that. So people tackle these children, in a harsh and sometimes cruel way. Think of the trans girls and trans boys. They are a threat or they are ‘confused children.’ Besides, no distinction is made between a social transition and a medical transition.

People think they know things. For instance, people think that children can ‘just turn up’ in a hospital. There, a team of surgeons is ready to go to work. The reality is different. There are waiting lists in the Netherlands and other countries. As a parent, I now know that this damn waiting list has risen to 2.5 years.

Politicians in other countries

Meanwhile, politicians in the country I live in also already speak of “gender ideology,” “indoctrination,” “gender madness,” or “gender delusion. Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there. It is not limited to adults. Children and young adults also participate in it. Well-known are the ‘2 gender jokes’ and memes. The harsh expressions on social media are directed at transgender children. No, I don’t share that just because of the unpleasant experiences my children have gone through.

In my memory is the story of the trans boy, who just didn’t want to share everything. Yet everything came out, at the hands of others. At a new school. What consequences did this have on that school and his life? What terrible humiliation and bullying he had to endure. That is degrading. As long as things like this happen, October 26 is a day that may be reserved for the international version of Transgender Children Day. This did not occur in the US. That it happened in the Netherlands is irrelevant. It could not have happened as well in Germany, France or any other country.

Other children

As a counter-argument, you could argue why there are no special days for other children. There are in some cases. The difference is just this: there is already an October 26 dedicated to transgender children. Why shouldn’t that have an international character? The idea that too much attention is already being given is nonsense. A lot of attention is being given and it is certainly not most carefully or positively. Besides a day of awareness, let this be a day when these children are allowed to shine. Not just my children. All children, because they deserve it.

So make a note in your calendar: 26 October. Transgender Children Day.

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