It's about love - not cash

Worcester News: BRAVE: Livvy James (05459601) Buy this photo » BRAVE: Livvy James (05459601)

THE mother of a girl trapped in a boy’s body says she is raising the issue to highlight the plight of transgender people and change public attitudes, not to make money.

Saffy James, mother of 10-year-old Livvy James, dismissed the idea that she was using her daughter’s condition to make money and said the family had not made a penny out of recent publicity.

Livvy took the brave decision to leave behind her past as a boy called Sam to return to school last September as a girl.

Mrs James, aged 37, of Worcester, said: “We’re in this for the cause, not for the money.

"We’re in it so changes can be made to make life better for everyone.

“It’s not about the money. We haven’t asked for money. We haven’t received any money. There has been no money changing hands.

“This is purely done out of love for anyone transgender.”

The story - which was exclusively broken by the Worcester News - has sparked interest across the world with support expressed by the Dallas Transgender Advocates and television appearances on the BBC and an article in the New Statesman.

Mrs James said the family had declined offers of accommodation in London when BBC Breakfast wanted to interview the family because she didn’t want her daughter to miss a day at school.

The family maintain that their reason for co-operating with the national media was to raise the profile of a petition against the use of offensive words to describe transgender people in the media.

The petition criticises the use of terms in the media like “sex swap”, “tranny” and “gender bender” because of the emotional scars it leaves on transgender people.

It argues that people with gender identity issues are being murdered, beaten, threatened, bullied, teased, intimidated, disowned and are prone to suicide and self-harm.

So far the petition, which will be sent eventually to the Press Association, has attracted 1,607 signatures.

She said: “We need all the help we can get so a law is put in place about what papers can and can’t write.

"There are people out there who are working tirelessly for change.

"We just wanted to make other transgender children’s lives better, to make people aware that this is a condition and does need to be treated as such.”

• To sign the petition click here.

Comments (17)

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12:18pm Mon 20 Feb 12

Polly2 says...

Anyone who is in anyway associated with trans issues will know that it is not usually done for the money. Some of the medial outlets treat transgender people very, very badly indeed, to the point of inciting ridicule and hatred.

Comprehensive research (Engendered Penalties) showed that up to one transgender person in three will attempt suicide. That is a price too high to be doing this for the money.

Well done to Livvy...and to Saffy for being such a caring and well informed mother!
Anyone who is in anyway associated with trans issues will know that it is not usually done for the money. Some of the medial outlets treat transgender people very, very badly indeed, to the point of inciting ridicule and hatred. Comprehensive research (Engendered Penalties) showed that up to one transgender person in three will attempt suicide. That is a price too high to be doing this for the money. Well done to Livvy...and to Saffy for being such a caring and well informed mother! Polly2

12:20pm Mon 20 Feb 12

smallscousefox says...

In my opinion,anyone even inferring that Saffy is trying to make money out of this...rather than make her much loved child happy,is the one with issues! Wouldn't any decent,loving parent do the same??? I know I would.Good luck Saffy+ Liv! Ignore the small minded minority who don't take the time to understand or empathise.They are not worth worrying about!
In my opinion,anyone even inferring that Saffy is trying to make money out of this...rather than make her much loved child happy,is the one with issues! Wouldn't any decent,loving parent do the same??? I know I would.Good luck Saffy+ Liv! Ignore the small minded minority who don't take the time to understand or empathise.They are not worth worrying about! smallscousefox

12:48pm Mon 20 Feb 12

outside-edge says...

I don't wish to criticise the work of professional journalists, but who made the allegations of wanting to make money? The Worcester News?

If so, perhaps the petition mentioned above should also encompass 'cheap' and facile 'shots' plus cynical 'spin' by hacks?

The James family are to be commended for their dignity and bravery in highlighting this situation. The story so far has been very enlightening and treated in a mature way.

One gets the impression thay they are a very loving family, and from what has been written so far, that they are NOT in this for money.

The Worcester News on the other hand appears to be capitalising on this in a very big way, a front page story almost everytime to sell more papers?
I don't wish to criticise the work of professional journalists, but who made the allegations of wanting to make money? The Worcester News? If so, perhaps the petition mentioned above should also encompass 'cheap' and facile 'shots' plus cynical 'spin' by hacks? The James family are to be commended for their dignity and bravery in highlighting this situation. The story so far has been very enlightening and treated in a mature way. One gets the impression thay they are a very loving family, and from what has been written so far, that they are NOT in this for money. The Worcester News on the other hand appears to be capitalising on this in a very big way, a front page story almost everytime to sell more papers? outside-edge

5:35pm Mon 20 Feb 12

lizzyloolah says...

Name and shame the maggot who made this horrid accusation!
Name and shame the maggot who made this horrid accusation! lizzyloolah

9:42pm Mon 20 Feb 12

neighbour25 says...

worcester news has difficulty verifying their facts its all one sided
worcester news has difficulty verifying their facts its all one sided neighbour25

11:37am Tue 21 Feb 12

OnAHype says...

completely not natural. 100% against this. I bet his/her mother will expect things to run easy during his/her school life. Although he/she will be subject to endless bullying and if this is the case, his/her mother will obviously sue or something. 'Slurs' such as tranny, shemale etc. are a natural part of life and kids will be kids and use these 'profanities' how can you expect them not to be used anymore? seriously get a grip and stop destroying freedom of speech. Maybe i should start a petition NOT to ban these words?
completely not natural. 100% against this. I bet his/her mother will expect things to run easy during his/her school life. Although he/she will be subject to endless bullying and if this is the case, his/her mother will obviously sue or something. 'Slurs' such as tranny, shemale etc. are a natural part of life and kids will be kids and use these 'profanities' how can you expect them not to be used anymore? seriously get a grip and stop destroying freedom of speech. Maybe i should start a petition NOT to ban these words? OnAHype

1:12pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Vox populi says...

Whilst I agree that your decisions on how to live your life should be treated with respect and dignity as a human being don't you think trying to ban words is a step too far?!?

May I suggest you watch the film Judge Dred where everytime Stallone swears he is issued with a violation and a fine. How we all laughed at the absurdity of it…. This is what you are asking for.

Children and adults will always be labelled, offended and called names, its called life. Why not add: Fat, Fatty, Shorty, Lofty, lanky, chubby, spotty, smelly,snotty….. I could go on for hours… Or do only those who are transgender require this support and a change to the law? Which means you are asking for positive discrimination.
Whilst I agree that your decisions on how to live your life should be treated with respect and dignity as a human being don't you think trying to ban words is a step too far?!? May I suggest you watch the film Judge Dred where everytime Stallone swears he is issued with a violation and a fine. How we all laughed at the absurdity of it…. This is what you are asking for. Children and adults will always be labelled, offended and called names, its called life. Why not add: Fat, Fatty, Shorty, Lofty, lanky, chubby, spotty, smelly,snotty….. I could go on for hours… Or do only those who are transgender require this support and a change to the law? Which means you are asking for positive discrimination. Vox populi

3:49pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Nigel Thornberry says...

"We’re in it so changes can be made to make life better for everyone". Well you're not succeeding then because hardly anyone gives a hoot. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't want the world to know if I was transgender. Attention seeking on a ridiculously blatant level.
"We’re in it so changes can be made to make life better for everyone". Well you're not succeeding then because hardly anyone gives a hoot. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't want the world to know if I was transgender. Attention seeking on a ridiculously blatant level. Nigel Thornberry

4:08pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Polly2 says...

@Nigel Thornberry

What usually happens is that someone outside the family outs them to the press. When that happens, the best way to handle it is to take charge of it.

I think I can promise you that attention seeking is not even on the radar...all people want is to live their lives without being hounded by the gutter press. Most of don't want to world to know either, and that is why it is problem. You might be astonished to discover the lengths to which some papers will go to get a story.

Representations were made to the Leveson Enquiry on the wider topic by Helen Belcher a couple of weeks ago. http://www.transmedi
awatch.org/press_rel
eases.html

We are victims, that is all.
@Nigel Thornberry What usually happens is that someone outside the family outs them to the press. When that happens, the best way to handle it is to take charge of it. I think I can promise you that attention seeking is not even on the radar...all people want is to live their lives without being hounded by the gutter press. Most of don't want to world to know either, and that is why it is problem. You might be astonished to discover the lengths to which some papers will go to get a story. Representations were made to the Leveson Enquiry on the wider topic by Helen Belcher a couple of weeks ago. http://www.transmedi awatch.org/press_rel eases.html We are victims, that is all. Polly2

4:13pm Wed 22 Feb 12

BernarddeCampio says...

If children are not considered to be old enough to make decisions about consensual physical relationships until they are 16 years old, how can anyone argue they are old enough to decide on their gender, surely a far bigger issue, at 10 years old?
If children are not considered to be old enough to make decisions about consensual physical relationships until they are 16 years old, how can anyone argue they are old enough to decide on their gender, surely a far bigger issue, at 10 years old? BernarddeCampio

5:02pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Polly2 says...

Bernard - I can only respond in general terms because I am an outsider looking in and happen to be retired health professional in this field.

The family will have the support of specialist consultants whose field is children just such as Livvy. It happens far more often than most people think and this family was just unlucky that the press got wind of it.

Decisions will have been made in consultation with those specialists and any decisions taken now are entirely reversible if Livvy changes her mind or if the family or any of the consultants think it is wrong for her. Research has shown that children as young as four can experience the perisistent discomfort of having a body of the wrong sex. Many of those children do, indeed, turn out not to have gender issues. And really, that is what this process will be about...making absolutely sure that it is right for Livvy. Nothing will be forced onto her.
Bernard - I can only respond in general terms because I am an outsider looking in and happen to be retired health professional in this field. The family will have the support of specialist consultants whose field is children just such as Livvy. It happens far more often than most people think and this family was just unlucky that the press got wind of it. Decisions will have been made in consultation with those specialists and any decisions taken now are entirely reversible if Livvy changes her mind or if the family or any of the consultants think it is wrong for her. Research has shown that children as young as four can experience the perisistent discomfort of having a body of the wrong sex. Many of those children do, indeed, turn out not to have gender issues. And really, that is what this process will be about...making absolutely sure that it is right for Livvy. Nothing will be forced onto her. Polly2

5:05pm Wed 22 Feb 12

BernarddeCampio says...

Polly2 wrote:
Bernard - I can only respond in general terms because I am an outsider looking in and happen to be retired health professional in this field.

The family will have the support of specialist consultants whose field is children just such as Livvy. It happens far more often than most people think and this family was just unlucky that the press got wind of it.

Decisions will have been made in consultation with those specialists and any decisions taken now are entirely reversible if Livvy changes her mind or if the family or any of the consultants think it is wrong for her. Research has shown that children as young as four can experience the perisistent discomfort of having a body of the wrong sex. Many of those children do, indeed, turn out not to have gender issues. And really, that is what this process will be about...making absolutely sure that it is right for Livvy. Nothing will be forced onto her.
I like your balanced response, and in many ways would have to admit that I am part of the uninformed masses who dont really know much about research in the field.
[quote][p][bold]Polly2[/bold] wrote: Bernard - I can only respond in general terms because I am an outsider looking in and happen to be retired health professional in this field. The family will have the support of specialist consultants whose field is children just such as Livvy. It happens far more often than most people think and this family was just unlucky that the press got wind of it. Decisions will have been made in consultation with those specialists and any decisions taken now are entirely reversible if Livvy changes her mind or if the family or any of the consultants think it is wrong for her. Research has shown that children as young as four can experience the perisistent discomfort of having a body of the wrong sex. Many of those children do, indeed, turn out not to have gender issues. And really, that is what this process will be about...making absolutely sure that it is right for Livvy. Nothing will be forced onto her.[/p][/quote]I like your balanced response, and in many ways would have to admit that I am part of the uninformed masses who dont really know much about research in the field. BernarddeCampio

5:40pm Wed 22 Feb 12

Polly2 says...

It is a difficult field for so many reasons, not least because any story about things being done to children brings out all our protective parental instincts.

It is also incredibly to convey to someone how it feels to have the wrong body, because they have no comparable experience to relate it to.

Thank you for your comments...I appreciate them. :)
It is a difficult field for so many reasons, not least because any story about things being done to children brings out all our protective parental instincts. It is also incredibly to convey to someone how it feels to have the wrong body, because they have no comparable experience to relate it to. Thank you for your comments...I appreciate them. :) Polly2

10:51pm Wed 22 Feb 12

LittleMissAlexa says...

Nigel Thornberry wrote:
"We’re in it so changes can be made to make life better for everyone". Well you're not succeeding then because hardly anyone gives a hoot. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't want the world to know if I was transgender. Attention seeking on a ridiculously blatant level.
Hi Nigel I understand you have very little education and I saw your comment on the sister story and found it a touch ignorant, I am sure if you were able to read evidence you would realise its an inbuilt trait and not unnatural but hey the worst type of ignorance is those not willing to learn
[quote][p][bold]Nigel Thornberry[/bold] wrote: "We’re in it so changes can be made to make life better for everyone". Well you're not succeeding then because hardly anyone gives a hoot. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't want the world to know if I was transgender. Attention seeking on a ridiculously blatant level.[/p][/quote]Hi Nigel I understand you have very little education and I saw your comment on the sister story and found it a touch ignorant, I am sure if you were able to read evidence you would realise its an inbuilt trait and not unnatural but hey the worst type of ignorance is those not willing to learn LittleMissAlexa

9:53am Thu 23 Feb 12

Nigel Thornberry says...

Who's the ignorant one. The one who doesn't agree with the decreasing moral standards in this country, or the one who doesn't like someone's views so resorts to insulting them. My view is that it clearly isn't an inbuilt trate as 90% of people with this kind of condition have very unusual upbrinings. If you can find some examples of where this has happened in a regular family environment, then I may be convinced that it is a genuine natural condition.
Who's the ignorant one. The one who doesn't agree with the decreasing moral standards in this country, or the one who doesn't like someone's views so resorts to insulting them. My view is that it clearly isn't an inbuilt trate as 90% of people with this kind of condition have very unusual upbrinings. If you can find some examples of where this has happened in a regular family environment, then I may be convinced that it is a genuine natural condition. Nigel Thornberry

11:21am Thu 23 Feb 12

Polly2 says...

Nigel Thornberry wrote:
Who's the ignorant one. The one who doesn't agree with the decreasing moral standards in this country, or the one who doesn't like someone's views so resorts to insulting them. My view is that it clearly isn't an inbuilt trate as 90% of people with this kind of condition have very unusual upbrinings. If you can find some examples of where this has happened in a regular family environment, then I may be convinced that it is a genuine natural condition.
Then you shall have it. Me.

I was born in 1953 into a lower middle class conventional family. One father, one mother, one brother, all heterosexual and no gender issues. Church on Sundays, cub scouts, toy soldiers (nothing girly), very respectable family..father a local government officer, mother a receptionist.
All very conventional...excep
t for my parents noticing odd behaviour when I was seven or eight, except for noticing the girls clothes at the back of my wardrobe when I was 16. They saw our GP without telling me...apparently I would grow out of it.

I didn't and had an unhappy life until I finally couldn't handle it any more, 15 years ago. Google Engendered Penalties and read the statistics. And read this http://www.advocate.
com/News/Daily_News/
2012/02/21/Survey_41
_of_Transgender_Peop
le_Attempted_Suicide
/
[quote][p][bold]Nigel Thornberry[/bold] wrote: Who's the ignorant one. The one who doesn't agree with the decreasing moral standards in this country, or the one who doesn't like someone's views so resorts to insulting them. My view is that it clearly isn't an inbuilt trate as 90% of people with this kind of condition have very unusual upbrinings. If you can find some examples of where this has happened in a regular family environment, then I may be convinced that it is a genuine natural condition.[/p][/quote]Then you shall have it. Me. I was born in 1953 into a lower middle class conventional family. One father, one mother, one brother, all heterosexual and no gender issues. Church on Sundays, cub scouts, toy soldiers (nothing girly), very respectable family..father a local government officer, mother a receptionist. All very conventional...excep t for my parents noticing odd behaviour when I was seven or eight, except for noticing the girls clothes at the back of my wardrobe when I was 16. They saw our GP without telling me...apparently I would grow out of it. I didn't and had an unhappy life until I finally couldn't handle it any more, 15 years ago. Google Engendered Penalties and read the statistics. And read this http://www.advocate. com/News/Daily_News/ 2012/02/21/Survey_41 _of_Transgender_Peop le_Attempted_Suicide / Polly2

7:40pm Thu 23 Feb 12

pinkfluff says...

I must have missed something- I have not noticed decreased moral standards.

Nice one Bernarddecampio...ve
ry cool chap, loving your response to Polly2
I must have missed something- I have not noticed decreased moral standards. Nice one Bernarddecampio...ve ry cool chap, loving your response to Polly2 pinkfluff

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