Dear Daddy,

  As I listen to you and Mommy try to choose a name for me, I can already tell you're going to be a great dad. I love to hear the stories Mommy tells her friends about you, especially the one where you saved both her and me from a car crash that would have ended in disaster. My absolute favorite thing is when you lay your warm hand on her stomach. I try to stretch my toes out to be able to touch you back.

  In just a few months I will be born, and I will be born a girl. You're going to make a great dad, but I need to ask you for a favor.

  When I am born you will be able to watch me grow. Like a flower, I'll start off small and slowly bloom into something strong and beautiful. I will strive for the impossible.

  You will play and dance with me. And when it's my turn to choose the game and I ask to paint your nails you’ll always be a good sport.

  You will love watching me in little league baseball and come to all my games. But it will break your heart when you see me cry as you break the news that next year I have to play softball instead of baseball because I'm a girl.

  Some days I will come home frustrated and confused because the boys were mean to me at recess, but you’ll cheer me up and tell me it’s because they like me, and that's just what boys do. That's probably what you did as a boy too.

  On the car rides to school you will talk with my friend's Daddy in the front seats while his son and I will sit in the back, listening half asleep and frustrated that we had to roll out of bed that morning. You will laugh and joke, and that is all it will be; just jokes.

  At the age of twelve I will come home and lock myself in my room. You won't know why or what to do, no matter how great of a dad you will be.

  At the age of fifteen I will finally come out to you about when I was raped. I will explain how my flower that was growing to be strong and beautiful, was plucked from its stem and is sitting in a stranger’s vase. You'll blame yourself, even though there was no way you could have known.

  Daddy, in just a few months I will be born, and I will be born a girl. Though we haven't yet met, I need to ask you for a favor:

  From the moment I am born you must teach me that the impossible is possible. You must explain to me that I shouldn't let anyone be mean to me, and that that is no way to show love. You should wait until I am old enough to understand that a joke is solely a joke, before you let me hear ones that shouldn’t be told as anything but. And Daddy, above all, teach me that being born a girl shouldn't be an obstacle.


Dear Daddy,

  Hearing you talk to Mommy about all the plans you have for me, teaching me to bat and throw a ball, gets me excited already. In just a few months I will be born, and I will be born a boy.

  When I am born you will get the chance to feel young again, or at least wish you could. You will keep chasing me around the field just to hear my laugh, no matter how tired you get.

  You will never forget our weekend ritual where you take me to the park to play whichever sport we are in the mood for that day. You will keep coming back, no matter how many times I accidentally hit you in the balls.

  I learn that you're the best guy around when it comes to videogames. And sometimes, you even let me be better.

  Overall, you will be a great dad, but I need to ask you for a favor.

  From the moment I'm born I'll strive to be the best. And above all, I'll strive to meet your expectations.

  I will be taught that the most shameful thing is to cry when anyone is around. So, I will bottle up my emotions. My way of relieving stress will be through a punching bag.

  By the age of fifteen I will develop an addiction to being as ripped as possible, which technically means I'll just be fitting the standard.

 By the time I am seventeen it will be drilled into my brain that I can never hit a girl, no matter the circumstance. But no one will tell the girls that they can't hit me.

 I will be stereotyped as a horny douchebag, and even called a rapist. It won't matter that I'm a virgin.

 At the age of twenty my career will be ruined because I will be accused of rape simply because the next day she felt regret. We were both drunk, but it'll be her word against mine.

 Daddy, don’t take this the wrong way. You will be a great dad, but, I need to ask you for a favor:

 In just a few months, I will be born, and I will be born a boy. From the moment I am born you must teach me that if I am trying my best, I am my best. You must show me that I am human, and that I am allowed to cry. You must understand that even though I am a boy, I am insecure too. You must teach me that I deserve to be treated with respect, and that I deserve to be loved. And Daddy, if all else fails, show me that being born a boy shouldn’t be my greatest challenge.