Molly is the mother of two children, a 3-year-old boy and a 6-year-old transgender girl. The younger child is the “stereotype of what I thought having a son would be like,” she says. “He loves trucks, cars, construction, superheroes and destroying the house.”
Her first child, also born male, just did not develop in the same way. Rather, from the time her then-son acquired language as a toddler, he continuously protested that he was really a girl.
“It was, ‘I’m a girl. I’m a sister. I’m a daughter. I’m that girl on that show. I’m that girl in that book,” Molly recalls.
So … is there something biological going on here?
"I think we already know that biology definitively affects gender identity,” says Dr. Stephen Rosenthal, medical director of UCSF’s Child and Adolescent Gender Center Clinic. Rosenthal rattled off studies in genetics, endocrinology and neuroanatomy, all suggesting that physiological differences play some role in gender identity development.