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Parents speak out about how they're raising 7-year-old intersex child who has male-appearing genitalia, two X chromosomes, and refers to herself with female pronouns


Raising a child without surgical intervention

Image source: CNN video screenshot

Eric and Stephani Lohman's 7-year-old daughter is intersex, and they are allowing her to grow up with medical surgical intervention.

Merriam-Webster defines "intersexuality" as "the condition ... of either having both male and female gonadal tissue in one individual or of having the gonads of one sex and external genitalia that is of the other sex or is ambiguous."

What are the details?

The Lohmans' child, Rosie, was born intersex.

Doctors determined that though her external anatomy "appeared more traditionally male," she had two X chromosomes, making her biologically female.

Eric said he was the first to notice the difference, according to CNN.

"The nurse picked her up and showed her to us, and I saw her body right away and noticed that she had what looked like a small penis," he recalled. "I knew that surgeries were common for intersex kids, but I didn't really understand how it would work. And so, my fear at the time was that they were going to take Rosie out of the room, and they were going to suggest doing the surgery [immediately]."

Stephani said that surgeons pressured her to agree to surgery for Rosie.

"When I met with the surgeon the first day, it was an intimidating day and it was overwhelming," she recalled, revealing that doctors brought "photos of a fresh surgical vagina of an infant."

"As if my concern was 'do I think that the surgeon could do a good enough job cutting up my child,'" Stephani added.

Eric and Stephani said after seeing the photo and weighing the risks with the benefits, they decided to let their daughter grow up without any type of surgical interventions.

Rosie said that while she prefers to use female pronouns, she sometimes feels like a boy, but other times, feels nonbinary.

"Because I am both!" she said, the outlet said.

    What else?

    According to CNN, the Lohmans have become activists against such surgeries as a result of their experience.

    Pending legislation in states like New York and California would ban surgeries and require informed consent from the patient before conducting a genital surgery.

    According to the outlet, the California bill faces a committee vote in a hearing Monday, and the New York bill will be introduced in an upcoming legislative session.

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