Although North Carolina's anti-trans bathroom bill has been replaced with a less restrictive version – which itself is currently under attack from a federal lawsuit – its effects continue to be felt throughout the state, and many people's personal prejudices are imposing additional restrictions on trans people's behavior. Emma Smith, a six-year-old trans girl in North Carolina, for instance, was banned not only from using the girls' bathroom at her school but also from hugging other students, The Daily Mail reports.
"She was told at first that she'd have to use the boys' restroom, but because she was dressed as a girl, she worried about getting picked on or teased so a couple of times, she wet herself instead," her mom Amy Smith told The Daily Mail. "She was even told she wasn't allowed to hug anyone. I told her that of course she could, so long as it was consenting and the other person wanted to be hugged. I've explained to her many times that just because someone is a grown up, it doesn't mean they're right."
Since then, Emma's started at a new school that's much more understanding of her identity, which has made life easier for her, her mother added. But she's still hoping to physically transition, and her family's started a GoFundMe page to raise money for her surgery.
"She is such a brave girl, and she makes me proud every day," Amy Smith wrote on the page. "I was so scared everyday of what lies ahead for her, and most of my fears came true in the way that some adults and even family have treated her. But then I look at how resilient she is and how happy she is being herself, and I just know in my heart that she will rise above all the hate that is so prevalent here in the south."
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