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'Pregnant Man' Expecting Baby No. 2

Thomas Beatie, the transgender man known around the world as "pregnant man" has told Barbara Walters that he's pregnant with baby No. 2.

Beatie and his wife, Nancy, became parents to baby Susan on June 29 and have lived in near seclusion in their house outside of Portland since then, only just beginning to venture out of the house, Walters reports. Baby no. 2, Beatie says, is due June 12. Wow, that's fast!

Beatie did not go on his male hormone testosterone after Susan's birth so he could have another baby, he told Walters. Nancy is currently breasfeeding Susan. So far, their most difficult battle hasn't been anything to do with raising their newborn. Instead, it's been over how Thomas Beatie is listed on Susan's birth certificate. You see, he wants to be listed as "father," which is proving difficult since he was the one who gave birth.

Clearly, men giving birth is so far outside the realm of normal (unless you're a seahorse), that it seems creepy to many folks. But the Beaties insist they are simply a normal family. Are we fascinated by the pregnant man because the family is so different from all the others we see?

By Stacey Garfinkle |  November 13, 2008; 12:34 PM ET  | Category:  Newsmakers
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Comments


If it were a transgender man and a woman with an adopted baby, it wouldn't be so intriguing. The strange thing to me is that Beatie is more like both genders than a man, yet he doesn't see it. He's so insistent that he's a man, but he's only half living as a man. It's weird, but as long as they're happy and their kids thrive, why does it matter to me?

Before the trolls hit, let me say that sex and gender are 2 different things. Sex is biological, gender is how you identify. There's no doubt this is a person whose sex is female. The gender is bizarre.

Posted by: atb2 | November 13, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I don't really mind any of this one way or the other, it just irks me that Thomas wants to make a big deal about being listed as the officially "father", which would set a very muddying precedent I would think. It's probably important to keep BIOLOGICAL things straight, and since Thomas' fatherhood is technically a biological falsehood, no one should pretend him to be the *biological* father. In effect, the role is perhaps capably filled, so it doesn't matter so much from that standpoint.

This reminds me too much of the whole issue of who Cartman's dad was on South Park :)

Posted by: Comunista | November 13, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

What an abomination. Those kids stand no chance after being born into this freakshow. The new "progressive" America I guess.

Posted by: bcsal | November 13, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

no matter what this person thinks, if there is a u***us then he is a WOMAN therefore a mom

Posted by: nall92 | November 13, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

He's the male parent, therefore the father. A grandmother who gives birth as a surrogate for her daughter should not be listed as "mother" any more than he should be listed as "mother." His wife is the mother. It's not about the biology. If it were, when same-sex couples completed second-parent adoptions birth certificates would not be reissued to list two mothers - which, at least in Maryland, they are.

Posted by: MomSarah | November 13, 2008 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Once again, people want to apply the rules differently to people they consider to be "too" different.

My birth certificate names a "father" who I didn't meet until I was 8 years old. After he married my mother and legally adopted me, I was issued a new birth certificate. It indicates that both he and my mother have blue eyes. Mine are brown --a "biological" impossibility.

There is no requirement that the "parents" listed on a birth certificate be the BIOLOGICAL parents. Think of adopted children, children conceived through IVF and other "artificial" means, and children of surrogates (such as the woman who gave birth to her own grandchildren yesterday).

Admit it: The only reason anyone wants THIS child's birth certificate to be "accurate" is because they're uncomfortable with the idea of a transgendered father.

Posted by: gettingdizzy1 | November 13, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Okay, I learned something new today. I had no idea that new birth certificates are issued when a child is adopted. Wow.

Re: this couple: Thomas is biologically a woman. She has a uterus and no prostate. She has a vagina and no penis. That's a female.

As atb says, "Sex" and "gender" are generally considered different things, and how Thomas wants to self-identify is a different issue. But biologically, Thomas is a woman.

Posted by: ArmyBrat1 | November 13, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Okay, I learned something new today. I had no idea that new birth certificates are issued when a child is adopted. Wow.

Re: this couple: Thomas is biologically a woman. She has a uterus and no prostate. She has a vagina and no penis. That's a female.

As atb says, "Sex" and "gender" are generally considered different things, and how Thomas wants to self-identify is a different issue. But biologically, Thomas is a woman.

the key phrase here is "She has a uterus and no prostate. She has a vagina and no penis. That's a female."

that alone makes her a mother. now if prior to the childs conception/birth the uterus was removed and there was a working penis then.....oh yeah, she wouldn't be a mom, then she would be a he and UNABLE to carry a child to term.

Posted by: nall92 | November 13, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

no matter what this person thinks, if there is a u***us then he is a WOMAN therefore a mom

Posted by: nall92
----

What are you, twelve? Uterus isn't a curse word.

Uterus. Uterus, uterus, uterus.

Posted by: thornwalker1 | November 13, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Who says that sex and gender are two different things? I know the answer... college professors, scientists, etc. Sometimes it takes college to make people stupid. You don't chose your gender or your sex. You're born into it. The whole confusion of so-called transgender people is a myth. When an anorexic person tells their doctor that they see in the mirror a fat person when in fact they are emaciated we know that they're mentally ill. When a different ill person, a woman lets say, looks in the mirror and sees a man, we should know with compassion that the person is indeed suffering from a mental illness.

This is just sad. It's sad because serious mental illnesses like this are not being treated and because it's held up as normal.

Does all this confusion - homosexuality, transgenderism, whatever, does any of this produce anything but more confusion and unhappiness?

Posted by: MarkFoxenberg | November 13, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Ok...maybe i'm too concrete. It seems to me if one still wants to conceive and carry babies, one doesn't really want to be a male, one wants to be a female. Deciding to forego one's male hormones in order to have another child suggests that an individual isn't ready to forego the physical functions of being female. Demanding to be treated as if one has done so sure suggests to me some serious psychological disconnect.

Posted by: las100 | November 13, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

fr bcsal:

>What an abomination. Those kids stand no chance after being born into this freakshow...

There is no "freakshow" in the Beatties' home. Grow UP and get a life.

Posted by: Alex511 | November 13, 2008 2:44 PM | Report abuse

no matter what this person thinks, if there is a u***us then he is a WOMAN therefore a mom

Posted by: nall92
----

What are you, twelve? Uterus isn't a curse word.

Uterus. Uterus, uterus, uterus.

DUH NO JOKE, I THOUGHT IT WOULDN'T GO THROUGH

UTERUS UTERUS PENIS PENIS

there...

Posted by: nall92 | November 13, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Live and let live, people!

The running joke in our household is that we're just like the family in the old "Leave it to Beaver" show - except that I'm Ward, and DH is June. And that works for us, even though most men don't want to spend *all* the years before the kids grow up being the SAHP, and most women aren't *anxious* to get back to WOH as soon as they're physically able.

As for the Beaties, it's none of our business. Anyone who's judging their family or its dynamics from the outside is just too full of themselves. You can't tell whether a family is working (raising happy kids to become successful adults) or not when the first child is only a few months old. Only time will tell what the outcomes will be for the children in this unusual family - and plenty of so-called normal families have produced some profoundly horribly messed-up people. So demanding that this family (or any family) conform to anyone else's standards of normalcy is no guarantee of the success of the family. But interferring in what makes the adults in the family happy is probably going to increase the risks of messing up the children.

As for Oregon's laws regarding what goes on the birth certificate, I doubt anyone here is a judge, lawyer, or legislator in Oregon, and those are the folks I'd consider qualified to comment on the legalities - not us ignorant out-of-state laypersons.

Posted by: SueMc | November 13, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

I have to agree with MarkFoxenberg and nall92. Plus, men/males cannot have babies. What, did they watch that Arnold Schwarzenegger movie or something? Isn't it amazing that they are trying to have their cake and eat it too? The poor children. Creating a lie to live under a lie.

Posted by: phylo7 | November 13, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Just because people want to be something else doesn't mean that they are. In the event of genital ambiguity, there are certain bright-line definitions that push someone more into one gender camp than the other. Mothering a child is definitely one of them--in fact, I would say that trumps any other determining factor. I'm ever so sorry if reality offends your sensibilities, but if you raised a fetus in your womb, you're a mother.

Science doesn't care about bizarro-world political-correctness or your personal feelings about your "gender identity". It is what it is. If you don't like be labeled a mother, take your beef up with Noah Webster. There's nothing morally wrong with WANTING to be a father or acting more like the father, but that's as far as it goes. Beyond that, we're indulging lunacy.

Posted by: ComfortablyDumb | November 13, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Does it strike anyone reading this how silly and patronizing it is to give this sad woman news space? Will the child call her MaPa? She may walk like a man and talk like a man but in the end she is one sadly messed up woman. Barbara, your journalistic reputation has just turned to tabloid tittilation. By the way, did He/She call you? Man bites dog anyone?

Posted by: MITCHS52 | November 13, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

If my wife had a double mastectomy and had taken male hormones before deciding to have a baby, she would be anatomically the same as Thomas Beatie.

Thomas Beatie's gender identity makes the family dynamic different than most same sex couples, but the fact remains that he is still anatomically a woman.

People should be permitted to live the way they want, but the media buy-in that Thomas is a man inflates what is biologically not true. It is not freakish for a post-mastectomy woman to have a child. Give them a break.

Posted by: Roger2 | November 13, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

This "man" is biologically a woman, so why the twisted craziness? "he" was born a girl and "he" has a uterus! "he" is a WOMAN. "He" simply likes to identify "himself" as "man" and "father", so "he" should not have reverted to being the true biological woman that "he" is in order to conceive babies - an exclusive female function - and left that to "his" wife. What a twisted world! I feel sorry for the childrn in this whole affair...children have enough issues to deal with!

Posted by: genevieve2000 | November 13, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

This "man" is biologically a woman, so why the twisted craziness? "he" was born a girl and "he" has a uterus! "he" is a WOMAN. "He" simply likes to identify "himself" as "man" and "father", so "he" should not have reverted to being the true biological woman that "he" is in order to conceive babies - an exclusive female function - and left that to "his" wife. What a twisted world! I feel sorry for the childrn in this whole affair...children have enough issues to deal with!

Posted by: genevieve2000 | November 13, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Aside from the parents' wishes, I feel strongly that all children have the right to know who their biological parents are, whether they were conceived by sperm donation, or in vitro, or their mother/father gave birth to them.

If a parent gives birth to a child, she is the biological mother, regardless of what the legalities are. No one else could labor and deliver that particular person.

Posted by: readerny | November 13, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Where did the sperm for this baby come from? That is who the father is. The egg came from the mother. Whether he is the father or mother doesnt really matter, because it takes TWO parents to make a child (even if they are separated by a lab or an adoption agency).

Posted by: tunatofu | November 13, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Trying for the THIRD time to post this...

Call me old fashioned, but is this person just a publicity whore or totally messed up? I can sort of get my arms around the whole transgender thing (I know that I am not being PC with that, sorry!), but do it all the way or don't do it at all. I may be an outlier with this opinion, but as long as Thomas has a uterus and can conceive and carry a baby to term I would consider "him" to be the mother of the child regardless of whether he considers himself to be a man and this is what should be reflected on the birth certificate.

If Thomas wants to continue to live in some in-between physical gender state I guess that it is his (her?) right, but there is a slippery slope if we start amending laws to account for the different combinations.

This reminds me of a computer application that I was implementing several years ago for a health system in Canada. When we were populating the 'gender' field in the database my colleagues and I were surprised to find far more values than simply 'male' and 'female' and I seem to recall that we ended up with 8 or 10 valid values.

Posted by: skipper7 | November 13, 2008 5:00 PM | Report abuse

An absolute abomination.

Posted by: pwaa | November 13, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

As an physician, I'll have no trouble to identify Beatie as a female and treat her as such. No amount of paperwork will eliminate a need for pap-smear, and ovarian cancer prevention tests. And no interview with Ms.Walters will make me screen Beatie for prostate cancer. It's as simple as that.

Posted by: summernight | November 13, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

I have no comment on their sexual orientation whatsoever, although I peacefully disagree. My only thought in this situation, is about the children. That is my only concern here, reading this article.

I understand they want children, but I can't get past the thought that it is not like going out and buying a puppy simply because "YOU WANT" one. These children will face confusion over this when they reach age of understanding. Attempting to imagine myself born under similar circumstances, growing up, the thoughts are neither pleasant or comforting.

If that is their preference as adults, so be it. I have no comment on that. With concern for the children brought into this world (bless them), I only hope that these adults gave MUCH consideration for how the lives of the children will be affected as a result of their choices and decisions. That's all. I also hope that the children are equally understanding, after learning of the unique situation they have been born into, and are accepting of the conditions. That is my only concern here.

Posted by: Obama2008 | November 13, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

I wish in today's society we could just say that a family is composed of parental units one and two, then we don't have to worry about psychological labels that you associate when people claim to be a father or a mother; people need to back off we are not talking about YOUR mother or your father, but what is necessary to make a family unit. I do think that raising children with 2 parental units or one, either a man, a women or a man who is a woman will allow the children to grow under a lie if the parent is abusive...so all homophobes out there, please don't use the excuse "poor children" when there are thousands of children out there with a "mother" and "father" that abuse them every day.

Posted by: paugil | November 14, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

The reference to male seahorses giving birth to baby seahorses really helped me understand the "father's" point-of-view. I'm not so sure that he should be listed as father on the birh certificate though. I hope he understands that (at least for this species!) the person that provides the egg is the mother.

I'm sure the kids will understand he is their father even though he gave bith to them.

PS-- aren't seahorses amazing? not just the dads giving birth-- the whole way they move and look. Noble and serene. And freaky. But in a good way!

Posted by: captiolhillmom | November 14, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Paugil, well said! DNA alone doesn't make gender, and let's face it...people are sometimes born into the wrong body! It's sad how this Judeo-Christian culture keeps trying to pigeonhole people into strict genders and gender roles, and it doesn't work! And for the record, the reason he kept his uterus was so he and his wife could have kids-after all, she can't since she had a hysterectomy long ago, so this way works for them. He may have been born female, but he's identified with male and sees himself as such.
What truly makes a person a man or a woman, anyway? It's not just genitalia, people! Strict gender roles are stupid anyway. The man who likes to stay home with the kids and tend the home and do all the cooking is just as much a man as the woman who hates "girly" styles, plays sports, wears nothing but pants, and works in a "man's" job is still a woman!
These people are not "freaks!" They are a loving couple whose kids were wanted and are loved by two caring parents! I say congratulations to them and I wish them all the best with Susan and her new brother or sister!

Posted by: dragondancer1814 | November 14, 2008 10:17 AM | Report abuse

No, what is really sad is how perversion and disgusting behavior is sanitized by those who really have no sense of morality or right and wrong.

Posted by: pwaa | November 14, 2008 10:34 AM | Report abuse

I have read a couple dozen of the posted comments, and one thing that strikes me is that we are all poking our noses into one family's privacy here. The idea that someone decided this was newsworthy does not change the fact that this is THEIR private business.

I know from my own experiences in the LGBTQ community that the single best way for any same-sex, transgendered or otherwise non-traditional couple to secure legal parental rights is to 1) establish a biological relationship exists with the child AND 2) have the second parent legally adpot the child.

I applaud the Beaties for doing what they thought was best for their family and I do not see how it is anyone's business which line says "Thomas" on the birth certificate. These people obviously love children and wanted to have them very badly in order to go through such an ordeal. If the children are loved and cared for well, I think we should all just butt OUT.

Posted by: CLBinDC | November 14, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

fr paugil:

>...I do think that raising children with 2 parental units or one, either a man, a women or a man who is a woman will allow the children to grow under a lie if the parent is abusive...so all homophobes out there, please don't use the excuse "poor children" when there are thousands of children out there with a "mother" and "father" that abuse them every day.

Standing, whistling, stamping feet, and applauding WILDLY!!!!!!!!! VERY well-written!

Posted by: Alex511 | November 14, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

I would agree with summernight's posting. Thomas Beatie is a female living the life of a male.

Posted by: la1007 | November 14, 2008 8:34 PM | Report abuse

Where do you get "might" be better? I grew up in DC, and nobody in their right mind would send a child to DC public schools, not if they want them back alive and with all brain cells intact.

Posted by: gaijinsamurai | November 20, 2008 8:16 AM | Report abuse

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