Transgender 6-Year-Old Finally Allowed To Use Girls’ Restroom Because She Is A Girl

Colorado Transgender Girl Coy Mathis Coy Mathis, a 6-year-old transgender girl, will finally be able to use the bathroom at  Eagleside Elementary School in Fountain, Colorado after the Colorado Civil Rights Division decided that the school district was creating an “unnecessary hostile situation” by not allowing Coy to use the girl’s bathroom. From the Denver Channel.com:

Coy was labeled male at birth, but has always known that she is a girl, which she has expressed since she was 18 months old. Since kindergarten, Coy had worn girls’ clothing to school. Her classmates and teachers at Eagleside Elementary School used female pronouns to refer to her, and she used the girls’ bathrooms, just like any other girl in her school.  In mid-December 2012, the Fountain-Fort Carson School District 8 informed Coy’s parents that Coy would be prevented from using the girls’ bathrooms after winter break. The District ordered Coy to use the boys’ bathroom, a staff bathroom, or the nurse’s bathroom.

After Coy’s parents were told of this decision, they removed all of their five children (who are all under eight years old) out of Eagleside Elementary and filed a complaint with the state’s civil right’s division. According to the Fountain-Fort Carson School District 8 told CNN that:

The district “took into account not only Coy, but other students in the building, their parents and the future impact a boy with male genitals using a girls’ bathroom would have as Coy grew older,” a letter the family’s attorney received in December said.

“However, I’m certain you can appreciate that, as Coy grows older and his male genitals develop along with the rest of his body, at least some parents and students are likely to become uncomfortable with his continued use of the girls’ restroom.”

Now Coy gets to return to school and she can use the bathroom with the other girls and even though her parents are happy with the outcome I think this is sort of absurd to begin with. Coy’s passport and state-issued identification recognize her as female. Her classmates and teachers refer to her as female. She is a little girl, so she should be able to pee like a little girl. The sad fact is, Coy is going to face a lot of discrimination and nastiness due to who she is when she gets older, and at age six shouldn’t all kids simply be focused on school and learning, playing and growing instead of dealing with discrimination? According to Coy’s mom:

‘Schools should not discriminate against their students, and we are thrilled that Coy can return to school and put this behind her,’ Kathryn Mathis, Coy’s mother, said in a statement. ‘All we ever wanted was for Coy’s school to treat her the same as other little girls. We are extremely happy that she now will be treated equally.’

It’s a fantastic outcome but I guess I just don’t understand why this was an issue to begin with.  I assume that her parents have talked to her about the fact she has genitalia different from other little girls and how she can best answer any questions about herself if she feels the need to, and if the school board was concerned about how her classmates would react to her using the girl’s room they probably should have looked to the fact that her classmates are accepting her as a she. I have a feeling some concerned parent raised this issue because they wanted to protect their own special snowflake from a student who is “different” from how their own kid is, but it seems pretty silly to me. I’m glad things will be back to normal for this little girl, as they should be.

(Image: twitter)

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    • Michelle

      If the teachers refer to her as a girl then who exactly is making her use the boy’s room? Is an administrator guarding the bathroom and telling the kids who can and can’t enter?

      • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

        I am not sure exactly how it went down, but I assumed some people complained and then they said she couldn’t use the girl’s room.

    • Véronique Houde

      If someone were to discover her genitalia, I’d be more concerned about why that child is peaking under or over the stall ;)

      • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

        Exactly what I was thinking

      • CrazyFor Kate

        Yeah, don’t they realize how women’s washrooms work? For all I know everyone else in the bathroom could have male genitalia. If everyone pees sitting down, there’s absolutely no way to tell.

      • kitten

        except when guys sit down and pee its not as loud…..

    • Athena A

      Wonderful that her parents are so accepting and let her be who she is! I hope she will be allowed to go on hormonal blockers when she reaches teenage years as developing hair in manly places and a deeper voice would be rather scarring, you never lose the deep voice once you have it.
      Great that most people seem so supportive, sadly a lot of people are still extremely prejudiced about transgender people, especially when they’re kids.

    • kitten

      how does a child identify as one sex or the other at 18 months old?

      • Alex Lee

        According to Dr. Alan Greene, by 18 months, the child knows his or her sex (i.e. aware that there are boys and girls, not just “baby”). Typically, between 18 and 24 months, the child starts to comprehend gender – and begins showing preferences for doing “boy” things or “girl” things.

        http://www.parents.com/toddlers-preschoolers/development/behavioral/gender-identity-issues/

        I think this article is a little clearer in the explanation: http://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/gradeschool/pages/Gender-Identity-and-Gender-Confusion-In-Children.aspx

        So, if you give a plus/minus of a couple months, having Cay identify as female at 18 months is acceptable.

        As far as the actual determination, I’m guessing the child psychiatrist has a whole battery of tests to confirm what the child is feeling.

      • SusannahJoy

        i was looking for a link but you beat me to it! its surprising how soon we figure out what gender we are, but it’s clear that it’s an innate quality that can’t be changed.

      • kitten

        interesting, thanks

      • AugustW

        I find this really interesting because I honestly don’t think my three year old daughter could tell you if she’s a girl or a boy. She knows her body parts, she knows her parts match my parts, but she has a speech a cognitive delay that coupled with being on the spectrum…I don’t know if she identifies herself as anything.
        That said, she wears pink, she loves stuffed animals, and trucks, and Elmo, and Minnie, and….a mix of girl and boy stuff.

      • CF

        Interesting first person’s perspective in Act 2 of this:

        http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/374/somewhere-out-there

    • Nichole

      I’m less concerned about where she pees and more concerned about what several people in the groups the mother became quite “famous” in are coming forward to say about her. Apparently Coy is one of three triplets who were concieved using clomid illegally purchased from Mexico, something the mother encourages other mother’s to do in an old blog post.
      Her sister Lily was left with perment severe brain damage after contracting rsv and being brought to an alternative healer. (the mom blogged about this too) For all purposes it seems as though this woman is using her kids to gain notoriety and attention, something that is becoming a disturbing trend, especially since they are often celebrated by the media.
      I can’t imagine the challenges of raising a child that society is automatically going to challenge every step of the way. But I also have a really hard time with locking a child so permanently into a lifestyle this young. I think that there is more going on here than a mother simply fighting for her child.

      • Blueathena623

        Whoa buddy. I looked her up and read some more, and yeah, that is a mess.

    • Sherlock

      Honestly, I could see how this might be a concern for parents if these were teenagers. Then sexual experimentation and questioning might be more of a concern. My transgender friend who is in grad school just uses a unisex bathroom there to prevent any uncomfortable issues with oversensitive people. But for 6 year olds? They don’t even know what sex is! And Coy couldn’t traumatize another child unless they were forced to be naked next to each other (there aren’t shared showers in 1st grade, are there?) Goodness.

    • kitten
    • lin

      Just clicked on the link for more info on the mother and this family. The mother is a despicable c*** and attention whore. Her poor kids. She caused her one child to suffer severe mental retardation and threw this daughter into the public spotlight to get attention. I bet it is the mom who wants her child to be a girl – whatn an awful person and mother.

      • Alex Lee

        Going to avoid the character attacks for the time being.

        “She caused her one child to suffer severe mental retardation”

        Citation needed. If you’re referring to Lily, she has cerebral palsy and is a triplet with Coy. Please describe how you think Kathryn afflicted one fetus out of three with cerebral palsy.

        “I bet it is the mom who wants her child to be a girl”

        From what I’ve briefly read in the past 48 hours regarding gender identification, there’s a lot more to it than just “Mommy says you need to be a boy”. Do you think Coy’s situation is similar to forcing a biological girl into a boy’s gender? If Coy was your child, how would you handle her situation?

        I accept that the distinction between sex and gender is a fairly new concept for a lot of people, but I am encouraged by the fact that these discussions and recognitions are now taking place.

      • lin

        I’m commenting on this very specific case and this very specific mother. Not any other transgendered person. I stated that I read the other links – she is a terrible, terrible mother and I will judge her based on her own words and terrible behaviour. I know that sex and gender are differnent, and completely agree that she should have been allowed tonuse the girls bathroom. Unfortunatey, there is way more going on here.

      • Beth

        No… sorry, but no. I would be willing to accept that if, during the course of some fairly intense psychological counseling, a doctor made the determination that Coy identifies as female. However, no legitimate psychologist is going to make that diagnosis at six years of age… to say nothing of eighteen months.

        The mother is a train wreck, and to me this really appears nothing more than a parent looking for her fifteen minutes of fame and screwing up her child to get it.

      • Alex Lee

        Dr. Diane Ehrensaft, Ph.D is a legitimate psychologist that does make that diagnosis as early as 2 or 3. She bases this on whether the child has language skills and can communicate independently. http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=90229789

        I’m not sure which psychologist was consulted in Coy’s case, but Dr. Ehrensaft is one example.

        Note that it is better to identify this and any conflicts the child is experiencing as soon as possible – there may be harm in waiting until age six or later.

        I’d like more clarification on your phrase “screwing up her child”. Do you think addressing Coy’s gender conflict is “screwing up”?