Please help Dean keep his son
$480 raised
10% of $5k goal
8 contributors
87 Weeks running

This is a long story. It's a love story. It's a story about a parent whose entire world revolves around their child. It's a story about me and my kid who is already an incredible soul at only four years old. We’re being torn apart, and I'm fighting to at least maintain 50/50 custody. 

The short version: I am a transgender man who transitioned after having my kid, and through a series of unfortunate events, am now facing my ex husband suing me for full custody. I am fighting for a minimum 50/50 custody, as our original court document says I should have and at best going for full custody. 

The long version is: I was born female into a home that was extremely religious and incredibly toxic. I was sexually abused as a child, and the environment I was in encouraged me to ignore everything.

Eventually I got married and had a child. The child - my son, Liam - changed me. He broke me and put me back together. He showed me new dimensions of love that I did not think were possible. His birth was the catalyst for change in my life and motivated me to be and do better. 

Eventually I came out as transgender and my then husband (who had become increasingly emotionally abusive) and I divorced. I had been cut off from family and friends and so had virtually no support system. I was alone and depressed and struggling to make the best choices for my child in the long run. 

Eventually I agreed to move in with my parents (who promised to help with my school). They lived in Wyoming at the time which was half way across the country from my Liam who was in Virginia. But if I could get free housing and help with tuition costs it would be worth a short time apart. My ex had promised to help me complete school but had, in the end, put his own career ahead of mine and never allowed me to go back to school like we had agreed upon when we married. 

Ultimately, I got screwed over by my parents who claimed they had only ever offered to help with housing and said there was no money to help. It's been an uphill struggle since then. I've worked hard and been hit with circumstances beyond my control that have set me back repeatedly. 

Through it all, my ex has continued to break and flagrantly disregard the legal custody arrangement that we set in place before I left. On top of that, our son has displayed increasingly concerning symptoms about my ex's household. 

I have gone along with things that were unfair to keep as much peace for my child as possible. Every action I have taken has been in his best interest, to ensure that he is cared for, and shielded as much as possible from toxicity and animosity. 

My ex is now bringing me to court to get full custody, even though he has repeatedly been in violation of the most basic elements of our legal agreement (such as minimal communication with me). 

Liam has always been my priority. He inspired me to be better, to go to therapy, to get on medication, to go back to school, because he deserves the best that I can give. He deserves a parent who is fighting to be healthy and good, and a parent who is doing everything to give him a happy, healthy life. 

Please hear my parental heart.

Currently I am back in Virginia, back in school, and working. The goal that I set is the retainer for an incredible lawyer I spoke with. I am also in the process of contacting legal aid and help elsewhere, and attempting to find anyone willing to take my case at a reduced rate or, ideally, pro bono. Donations are appreciated, as are referrals or contact from lawyers who can help. Should I find a lawyer willing to take my case pro bono, all donations will either be used to help any additional legal fees or will be donated. 

I just want to be in my child's life. I want him to know that he is loved fiercely and fully for who he is. I want him to know that I've never given up on him. I want him to know he's worth fighting for - because, friends - he truly is. Please help me stay with my baby. 

 

*Note* This post was originally on YouCaring and we raised over $3500 in two hours. I was blown away. They took the campaign down due to their policy on not hosting help for legal issues but have allowed me to keep the money raised up until that point. 

I cannot thank you enough. There are no words to express my gratitude. 

I am keeping the campaign open here as the legal battle could be long and others have requested to keep donating to both help with legal costs and general costs for Liam and I to maintain stability throughout this long and difficult process. It is also helpful to keep people updated about the process in one place. 

Thank you again. 

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