A nine-year-old who was born a boy is now living as girl after telling her parents she was born in the wrong body at the age of seven.
Autumn Norris, formerly known as Anthony, first told her mum, Fran Norris, that she wanted to be in the girl when she was taking a bath two years ago.
Since then, and with the full backing of her parents and her school, she has transitioned completely – wearing girls’ clothes, make-up, hair extensions and nail varnish and only responding to her female name.
Fran, 36, a tattoo artist from Telford said: “When Autumn first spoke to me, she got out of the bath and said she was not a boy any more, she was a girl.
“If anyone comes out with something so life changing it’s always going to come as a shock, so I just gave Autumn a huge hug and was as open and honest as I could be.
“She said she didn’t like the fact she had a penis and should not have been born with one, but I told her it would be a long time in the future that anything like that could change.”
Fran said that looking back Autumn had always been very feminine even when she was Anthony.
“Her choice of activities and toys were all things that were marketed at young females,” she explained.
“Anthony would ask to have his nails painted or have his make-up done, but I just thought he was curious and experimenting or enjoyed role play – I didn’t think he was gender aware.
“So when Anthony finally approached me, everything fell into place – it all made sense.
The mum-of-four says her and Autumn now do everything any mother and daughter would do together.
“The first thing Autumn wanted to do was go shopping with me, and she loves everything that comes with being female,” she said.
“After having three boys, it’s nice to go shopping with my daughter.”
After being given full support by her school, Autumn can now be herself and the school has formally changed her name and gender on their files.
She is also looking to the future, discussing gender reassignment surgery and becoming a mother one day with her parents.
“When she said she wanted to be a mum someday and I told her she wouldn’t be able to give birth to a baby, she started to well up,” Fran said.
“But after a little cry, she said it’s okay because she would adopt all the children that other people don’t want.
“When it comes to big questions, she was so mature – she has such a lovely way of turning a negative into a positive.”
And overall her parents say Autumn is so much happier now.
“She can be who she wants to be and she loves it, her behaviour has gotten better ever since the change,” she said.
Autumn’s mother is now completing a book about her experience raising a transgender child, set to be released this summer, which she hopes will help break taboos and offer parents going through similar gender issues some support.
“I want other parents to know that if their child is going through this, they’re not alone and it can be a beautiful thing.”