A UK court has ruled that a transgender man who gave birth must register as the baby’s mother, though the law recognizes him as male.
Freddy McConnell was born female but transitioned in 2018 before giving birth. When he delivered his child, he was legally recognized as a male, according to CNN. Despite that, the Registrar General said McConnell must register as the baby’s mother to comply with British law. McConnell then sued the Court in an attempt to get the decision overturned.
He lost the case last week when Sir Andrew McFarlane, president of the High Court’s family division, stuck with the original decision, ruling that there is a “material difference between a person’s gender and their status as a parent.”
“I’m saddened by the court’s decision not to allow trans men to be recorded as father or parent on their children’s birth certificates,” McConnell tweeted after the decision. “I fear this decision has distressing implications for many kinds of families. I will seek to appeal and give no more interviews at this stage.”
McConnell also spoke to Buzzfeed News about the impact of the court’s recent decision, saying, “It is bigger than us. I will carry on fighting because this is threatening to set things back for LGBT people — as well as for society, gender, and how families are created. This slams the brakes on progress in a way that should scare people.”
McConnell’s journey to parenthood was recently covered in a feature-length documentary called, The Sea Horse: The Man Who Gave Birth.
When I’m not hanging out with my three-year-old and husband in Brooklyn, I’m busy writing stories for Mamas Uncut and managing PR + Marketing for Magnolia Bakery, based in New York City. On weekends, you can usually find me at a local park or playground pushing my daughter on the swings, “researching” the best almond croissants in Park Slope or launching into impromptu family dance parties at home, the sidewalk or, every once in awhile, a restaurant bathroom. I’m still trying to master the whole parenting thing, but I have learned that copious amounts of coffee, humor and humility are involved on a daily basis.