JOSIE Romero looks and acts like any other eight-year-old girl – but was born a BOY named Joey.
At FOUR she insisted to her parents: “I am really a girl.” At FIVE she was refusing to have her hair cut. And at SIX she had been diagnosed as transgender.
Now her sex has been legally changed and with the help of drugs and surgery she will grow up to be a woman.
Mum Venessia, 42, said: “As a toddler she wrapped up her army figures and rocked them like a baby.
“As she started to talk, she’d say, ‘I’m a girl’. We used to correct her and say, ‘No you’re a boy’.
“By the time she was four she was insisting, ‘No, I really am a girl’.”
At the time Venessia and hubby Joseph, an engineer in the US airforce, were living on a base in Japan. They adopted a Chinese girl aged two – and Josie loved playing with her AND her toys.
When Josie was 5½ a paediatrician referred her to a gender specialist and the family began accepting her as a girl.
Joseph admitted: “I had mourned the loss of my son. When I came to terms with it, I knew I had gained a daughter.”
But not everything went smoothly – with daily protests outside the base’s school. Since the family returned to Vail, Arizona, last year Josie and her sister Jade have been schooled at home.
Josie’s birth certificate, passport and even her social security number have been changed to show her as a girl.
She will be given drugs to prevent male adolescence and, at 12, get female hormones. And she understands she will need surgery as an adult to become a full woman.
Josie – now a spokesperson for transgender children – said: “I am happy everyone knows I am a real girl, and that I don’t have to pretend to be a boy any more.”
The family are one of several featured at 9pm on Monday in Channel 4’s BodyShock documentary Age 8 And Wanting A Sex Change.
The case echoes that of a boy of 12 in Southern England, revealed last month by The Sun. He returned to school from holidays as a girl after his parents changed his name by deed poll.
Source: The Sun