It hardly seems like news: A seven-year-old boy goes to school dressed in boy’s clothes, enrolled with a boy’s name, James.
But after years of headlines about his parents battling in court over custody and whether or not James Younger really thinks he’s a girl, it’s a step in the right direction for him to embrace his male, biological reality.
Because of a recent court decision, James and his twin brother, Jude, now live half the time with their father. And when given the choice of what to wear to school, James chose to attend school as a boy last week. Friends of Mr. Younger posted photos of the boys going to school on Facebook.
Dr. Anne Georgulas, James’ mother, began insisting when he was around three that James identified as a girl. A video of James at three showed him saying, “Mommy says I’m a girl” and talking about the “secret” play with mom where she put him in dresses and painted his nails. Dr. Georgulas sent James to school as “Luna,” in girl’s clothing and makeup – who even sends a real kindergarten girl to school in makeup?
During the latest custody battle, Judge Kim Cooks placed a gag order on Dr. Georgulas and James’ father, Jeffrey Younger, so the video was removed from YouTube. Judge Cooks awarded joint managing conservatorship and joint decision making to both parents, overturning a jury decision giving sole custody to Dr. Georgulas.
In announcing her decision, Cooks read testimony from Dr. Georgulas saying she “may have over-affirmed the child’s [female] identity.” Cooks also chastised Mr. Younger for publicizing the story and for raising funds online, with the help of friends, to cover court costs. A Dallas CBS station reported Cooks saying, “The father finds comfort in public controversy and attention surrounded by his use of unfounded facts and is motivated by financial gain of approximately $139,000, to which he has received at the cost of the protection and privacy of his children.”
The “Save James” website has since been shut down, replaced with a new website, “SJSaveThousands.” It’s now focused more broadly on keeping other children from being “transitioned” to look like the opposite sex with clothes, puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and surgeries.
Cooks also ordered the family to attend therapy because of widespread news coverage of the story.
Meanwhile, the custody battle goes on. Dr. Georgulas filed a motion to overturn Judge Cooks’ decision, giving her complete custody of the boys. She’s also asking Cooks to recuse herself from the case because of comments she made on social media. According to The Dallas Morning News, Cooks shared a story about the case on her own Facebook page and commented on the case, saying, “The Governor nor any legislature had any influence on the Court’s Decision.”
Texas lawmakers, including Governor Greg Abbott, expressed concern about “transitioning” young children who don’t have the capacity to make such life-changing decisions. Still, Georgulas’ attorneys questioned Cooks’ impartiality. They also argue that Cooks ignored the jury decision granting the mother sole custody of the twins.
It would be nice if James were left in peace to accept and embrace being a boy, growing into a solid sense of masculinity. But that doesn’t look like it will happen soon, given the contentious nature of this case.
Resources for individuals and families dealing with transgenderism: