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Q&A: Seven Year Old Transgender?

Q: My 7 year old nephew sees himself as a girl. My sister, a clinical psychologist believes that the only “treatment” for his condition is to accept him as he is and to relate to him as if he were a girl. We are very close with the family, but I have a hard time relating to my nephew as a girl. It seems like a devastating mistake. My sister, however, does not want to discuss it. (They are not Torah observant). What does the Rav advise?


A: Tell your sister that her son’s confusion stems from a stage of repression in which he is currently enmeshed. Unconsciously, he is repressing his masculine identity as part of a defense mechanism against his failure to perceive the difference between reality and imagination.

For more on defense mechanisms in the psyche, see Rabbi Ginsburgh’s recent English Torah lesson, and in the article, “Why Hasn’t Mashiach Come? Three Defense Mechanisms for Dealing with Anxiety.”

Photo by Fachry Zella Devandra on Unsplash

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