Jeffrey Younger, a Texas father of two boys, has received some crucial attention in the last few months due to his nightmare custody battle with his ex-wife who claims that one of their sons, James, is a transgender girl.
And in a podcast episode earlier this week that updated listeners on his situation, Younger explained his gut-wrenching quandary: "The only way you survive this and get your son through this alive is to calmly allow your son to be tortured right before your eyes and outlast the opposition."
What's the background?
Younger said issues with the way his wife was treating James commenced over three years ago when he complained she would lock him in his room and say things like "the monsters only eat boys."
Since their divorce, Younger said his ex-wife socially transitioned James and gave him a new name — Luna — which his teachers use. James, now 6, also dresses as a girl and uses the girls' restroom at school — and soon may be headed to hormone transitioning.
Thing is, Younger said James told him he isn't a girl and "violently refuses to dress as girl at my house." But regardless, Younger said his ex-wife not only is on the path toward forcing Dad to accept James' transition to female — and pay for things like a transgender-affirming therapist and hormone treatments and other procedures — but also to remove custody rights such as overnight visitation. And all with the blessing of the courts.
"She filed a motion last year to modify [custody]" and "claimed I was refusing to recognize and affirm his female identity," he said during an hourlong interview with Luke Macias, a Texas-based conservative Christian political consultant. Younger added that he now has to "pass transgender education" and only use female pronouns for his son.
"I can never present James as a boy to outside world," Younger added.
Here are a few stirring moments from Younger's podcast interview:
"I want you to imagine having electronic communication with you son on FaceTime, and imagine that your ex-wife has dressed him as a drag queen to talk to you. He has false eyelashes and makeup. His hair has got glitter in it. He's wearing a dress. Now imagine how you would feel seeing what I believe is actual sexual abuse — I believe this is not just emotional abuse but is the very, most fundamental form of sexual abuse, tampering with the sexual identity of a vulnerable boy. Every. Single. Day. You have to see your son sexually abused, and you have to maintain your calm ... because the courts are not going to be fair to you. And the only way you can survive this and get your son through this alive is to calmly allow your son to be tortured right before your eyes and outlast the opposition. That's what it's like."
At this point, Younger said he and his ex-wife are in a custody evaluation period, and the legal proceedings have become "very expensive."
Fortunately, donation sites have been established that have raised about $70,000 for Younger's legal expenses. You can visit them here and here. There are a pair of petitions folks can sign — one at change.org and another for the White House to check out if enough signatures are gathered.
The podcast hosts also noted that about half of the emails that have come in reacting to the online sites have been from those in the LGBT community who support Younger.
Younger remained calm throughout his interview, but a gnawing question continues to eat at him.
"They're asking me to affirm a delusion," he said, adding that "we don't ask it in any other instances. Why on this one issue parents don't have the right ... to educate their children?"