Participants: Max & Ryan; French; Catholic; Transitioning; Trans; Respect
Ryan: Samantha actually this is her first year, she’s in grade two right now and she goes to a French Catholic school. Because that’s the only French school near here.
Tara: Who speaks French in your family? (Max raises his hand)
Tara: Oh okay. Max does.
Ryan: We all kind of do. I took French immersion.
Tara: You use both?
Max: Oh, yeah.
Tara: At home?
Max: As much as I can, I predominantly speak in French to the kids. And Ryan will speak, well he speaks both. It’s dependent on, if asked a question in French, you know, he’ll respond however. But most of the time, it’ll be if I speak to one of the kids in French, I’ll try to get them to respond in French. But it’s just making sure that they hear it all the time and so that’s how - that’s how it goes.
Tara: Great, so back to Samantha. French Catholic School…
Ryan: So, French Catholic School. But this is her first year, being Samantha, because up until this year she was attending school as Zachary our son.
Ryan: And over the summer, she told us that a better fit is Samantha and that from now on, things moving forward, that we’re to address her as Samantha and she’s our daughter. And this is our first year, and she’s the first I guess trans student that not only the school, but the school board has had to uh…
Ryan: For lack of a better word, deal with … I don’t know if that’s …
Ryan: No, but I mean like...
Ryan: To serve I guess.
Max: Yeah serve. That’s a much better word.
Ryan: Yes to acknowledge perhaps and they’ve been wonderful. We met with them before the school year. And they were very relieved actually, once we… after the meeting… I guess they assumed we were going to come in “guns a blazing” demanding rights and accommodations and this kind of stuff. But really the intent of meeting with them was simply just to make sure everyone was on board and everybody’s going to be respected. And everyone knew how we were expected to move forward. And really school has been just like it was last year. You know. There was kind of a week of kids adapting. Kids who previously knew her, as Zachary. are now, you know expected to call her Samantha. And there was a… you know, a couple of - maybe the first day was uncomfortable. And I'm sure there was a probably few more after that Samantha didn’t probably divulge. But, I mean now, all the teachers, all the kids, all her friends, all the other parents, I mean everybody have just jumped on board.
Max: And embraced her. Yeah, just the way she is.
Ryan: And it’s just been really no wavering.