“If this was YOUR daughter, would you be comfortable sending her into a men’s bathroom?” reads the original caption to a photo posted by Meg Bitton on Facebook.
“Neither would I. Be fair. Be kind. Be empathetic. Treat others how you would like to be treated.”
Since being posted on Tuesday, the image has been shared more than 17,000 times. Its message is strong. The caption goes on to explain that this is Corey Maison and she is transgender. The photo has been edited to reflect the way she would like to be seen.
Though she was born a boy, the 16-year-old has known she was transgender for many years. Even at age two she recalls getting a truck for Christmas while one of her sisters received a Barbie and wanting nothing to do with the truck. She feels like she lived the first decade of her life in a body that didn’t belong to her.
Six months ago, her mother surprised her with a gift of her first dose of hormones.
(Photo: Audrey Woulard Photography/via Facebook)
Bitton’s post describes how Maison has struggled over the years and touches on the abuse many transgender people face – particularly when it comes to something simple like using a public washroom.
“She was born with male anatomy but identifies as a female. Under the new laws, SHE would be forced to use the men’s room,” she says.
Bitton then goes on to speak of the online abuse she’s certain this post will receive.
“It is impossible to moderate this post, try as we may. I want to delete it as badly as I don’t want to delete it. I decided to let Corey’s mother make that call and she asked for it to stay to raise awareness so it will. PLEASE BE ASSURED that I do not in anyway support the trolling insanity I am seeing here and I VERY MUCH appreciate all the positivity around Corey as does she AND her family.”
So far, the post’s 7,000+ messages have been a mix of positive and negative responses – though mostly supportive. Either way, a conversation has been started.
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