Family traditions are a way to provide love, service, and value to family members as it strengthens family ties and raises responsible and considerate children. But they can sometimes bring distress and dispute in a family. This mother faced something similar and asked if she was wrong for not giving family heirloom to trans daughter.
A mother of three children: a trans daughter, cis daughter, and cis son had a family tradition to gift a beautiful diamond necklace to the eldest daughter in the family when she turns 18. However, the parents decided to gift it to their cis daughter, even though the trans daughter was the eldest which caused the dispute in the family.
The mother then took the matter to Reddit and asked users if she was wrong to tell her trans daughter that she intended to give the necklace to cis daughter even though she is younger.
She wrote that she had 3 kids Susan (17), Jessica (mtf for 4 years 18), and Matt (21). There was a tradition on her side of the family where the eldest daughter in the family gets a beautiful diamond necklace when she turns 18 years.
One day, while she was having dinner with her family, Susan casually asked her if she could wear the necklace to her junior prom. To which the mother joked that it doesn’t matter because in a year it was going to be hers only. On listening to this Jessica fumed in anger and asked why isn’t she getting it as she is the one who is the eldest.
The mother responded that she always planned on giving it to Susan, but since the circumstances have changed, she was willing to go to a jewelry store with Jessica and get her something equally special. But this didn’t satisfy Jessica and she got rude to her mother which resulted in a fight among Jessica, Susan, and their mother. In the fight, Susan said some very transphobic things to Jessica.
Now, the mother asked the users if she and her husband were wrong in giving the necklace to Susan instead of Jessica.
One of the users said that it was a difficult situation for the family. The trans daughter Jessica feels it is yet another instance of being considered less than a woman. The female born daughter Susan feels it is being unfairly removed from her and she didn’t consider this possibility because who can foresee this. In the user’s opinion, the parents should give the necklace to the daughter who always expected to receive it and explain to the trans daughter how they respected and recognized her as their daughter but this was set in motion before anyone knew.
Another user said that Susan thought the necklace was hers for most of her life as she was the only daughter. It was not fair to take that away from her.
A third user expressed that the parents weren’t purposely excluding Jessica, it just didn’t occur to them because they’d always intended to give it to Susan. They were right, it wouldn’t be fair to change that after she knew she was going to have it her whole life. They proposed a thoughtful compromise and she rejected it. They were in no way being transphobic.
Some other user wrote, “If this necklace is given to the eldest daughter when she turns 18 and Jessica is already 18, why didn’t Jessica bring this up beforehand? It doesn’t sound like she wants the necklace for the traditions. It seems like she wanted it to validate herself as a woman in the face of her little sister getting it. It seems like if Susan had never asked to wear it, Jessica would not have cared, up until the point that Susan was set to receive the heirloom at least. Then I imagine this situation happening at that point in time. Regardless of gender or sexuality, this is wrong in my eyes. Of course, Susan was also wrong for the transphobic comments.”