"First it was parents who accepted their gay children who were shunned by society. Now parents trying to keep life as normal as possible for their transgender children are being called "crazy" ... and worse. But America, the fact is transgender kids are here. Their parents don't need criticism. They need support.

Although exact statistics on how many are slim (in 2002, it was estimated male-to-female transsexualism in the United States was in the range of 1 in 500 to 1 in 2,500; female-to-male stats are even less specific), for every child questioning their gender, there's a parent or two trying to be the best parent they can be.

So The Stir turned to Cris Beam, a mom to a (now adult) gender-variant daughter who she began fostering when the teen had nowhere else to go. Beam spent years working with transgender teens in New York City and is now author of a new young adult novel, I Am J, about a female-to-male transitioning teen. We asked her to share what she's learned being a mom to a trans teen and living in a home with a partner who has transitioned too."