Amie Schofield chose the name Victoria when doctors said her baby would be a girl.
When they said her baby would be a boy, they switched to Victor.
But it turned out that their blue-eyed baby was intersex – with both female and male traits. So they decided to call their baby Victory.
This wasn’t her first intersex child. Around 20 years ago, she also gave birth to another intersex child (with two X chromosomes and a Y chromosome). That time, she agreed to have her kid undergo surgery that tipped the scales of gender to masculine.
However, the operation didn’t solve the gender issue in the child’s mind or secure them from vicious beating years later.
With new baby, Victory, Schofield has been given another chance to try one more time. They want Victory to be accepted and to make the world more accepting of people with both male and female traits.
“What I hope is what every parent hopes for their kid,” Schofield shared. “We don’t want her to look at herself and think there’s something wrong just because she’s different.”
Intersex is an umbrella term for numerous conditions where external or internal sex characteristics are not exactly like normal female or male bodies.
Georgiann Davis, a sociologist at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, said: “I’m convinced every single person on this planet has met someone who’s intersex.”
Dr. Adrian Dobs, director of the Klinefelter Center at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said that some intersex conditions run in families.
Doctors have administered hormones and performed surgery to intersex children to make their bodies more like typical girls and boys.
Schofield took doctors’ advice and raised her first child as a boy after surgery that brought down undescended testicles. However, the onset of puberty brought breasts and hips.
“It’s not something I really thought about until they started making fun of me,” said her eldest. The teen had to wear sports bras and binders, and layers of shirts to prevent bullies from attacking.
Schofield let her child experiment with dresses and nail polish at home. “I wish that we could have been open,” she expressed. “I wish I had understood more so that maybe I could have made it easier.”
After getting in touch with LGBTQ community, they felt exploring femininity publicly seemed possible.
But a man suddenly attacked him when he heard a deep voice that didn’t match the female body. Blood spilled everywhere as he landed powerful punches before he ran away.
Schofield is now determined to protect her second intersex child. “I don’t want her to live that kind of life,” she said.
However, Victory has a separate condition that prevents her body from responding to male hormones. But because of the Y chromosome, they were encouraged to raise Victory as a boy.
They took their baby home and decided to raise Victory without pushing either gender. They have decided to forego confirmation surgery.
Now, Victory is a cheerful 5-year-old with a blond hair and toothy grin. She is mostly deaf but communicates with signs. She hugs a kitten, runs for the bus in a backpack with butterfly wings, and sits next to her great-grandma to read a book.
Schofield’s eldest lives outside the state and managed to recover from the brutal attack. Knowing Victory was born with XXY chromosomes brought a sense of comradeship but also fear for the sibling. “I’m scared of how society will treat her,” the eldest said.
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