Childrearing

Trans Teen Makes Own Medical Decisions, Mother Decides To Sue Every Single Person She Can Think Of

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(Via PierreDesrosiers/iStockPhoto)

A Minnesota teenager appears to have really drawn the short straw when it comes to parents, because not only did her mother not support her when she came out as transgender, her mother allegedly told her she wanted nothing to do with her and never to see her again. Then, when the 17-year-old trans teen–who says she was on her own and had received no contact or support from her mother–made medical decisions for herself, her mother suddenly popped back out of the woodwork to sue everybody she could think of.

(Related: This Mother Found a Gorgeous Way to Fix an Old Tattoo of Her Kids When Her Son Came Out as Trans

According to NBC’s Mary Emily O’Hara, Anmarie Calgaro is suing her county health boards, the school district, several local healthcare charities, and her own daughter, because her trans teen was able to declare herself independent and get counseling and hormone treatments without her mother’s consent. Calgaro also insists on referring to her daughter as her “son” throughout, which is probably one of the reasons her daughter doesn’t want anything to do with her.

Calgaro is suing on the grounds that her 14th amendment rights to due process were violated because she wasn’t consulted about her daughter’s treatments.

The unnamed 17-year-old has reportedly not had contact with her mother since at least June 2015, when she filed an emancipation statement with the aid of a legal assistance nonprofit that said her mother had declared she wanted no further contact with her child, that she knew where her child was and had made no attempts to reconcile or get her child back, and that she knew where the girl was and had not notified police or declared her a “runaway.”

Minnesota doesn’t really have legal “emancipation,” but it says that minors who are living on their own and supporting themselves with no parental assistance are allowed to make health care decisions for themselves. The teen’s statement was submitted as her assertion that she was living independently and on her own.

About seven months after the girl’s emancipation statement was filed, in January of this year, a doctor wrote a letter on the teen’s behalf saying that she had received hormone therapy and was living as a woman, so the teen could get new identification documents that identified her as female.

Now, in November, Calgaro is suing everybody she can think of because she thinks her constitutional rights were violated by her estranged daughter being allowed to make her own healthcare choices. This doesn’t sound like a concerned mother trying to care for her child and reestablish a relationship. It sounds like a transphobic mother trying to wrest control away from her child and set precedent to allow other parents of trans kids to do the same.

As if that weren’t awful enough, it looks like Calgaro really lit the Asshole Symbol in the sky over Minnesota, and now a bunch of anti-choice activists have gotten involved as well. Calgaro is getting legal representation from a huge anti-abortion law firm that appears to have decided to help her out in part because the law that allows emancipated minors to make their own medical decisions could be used by minors who want to get abortions without having to tell their parents. (Minnesota requires parental notification for non-independent minors trying to get abortions.)

Calgaro’s lawyers are insisting that this poor teenager was able to get a “life-changing operation” and seems to be trying to imply as heavily as possible that physical surgery was involved, even though NBC’s O’Hare contacted several experts who said there was basically no chance the teen had gotten surgery. She almost certainly just had counseling and hormone therapy, but that doesn’t get the pearl-clutchers in a tizzy as much as the idea of “sex change surgery.”

This whole case is grotesque, and it must be awful for that poor teenage girl who is just trying to get on with her life. In July she’ll be 18, though, and hopefully that means she’ll never have to deal with any of this again.

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