Ken Ballard, whose 14-year-old transgender son had attempted suicide twice, gave an emotional speech about his experience raising a transgender child during Texas’ 85th Legislative Session earlier this year.
Equality Texas recently shared a video of Ballard’s speech about his son Ashur on Facebook as part of its #TransTuesday series.
When Ashur first came out, Ballard struggled with how to approach the situation.
“Was I going to be his bully?” Ballard says. “Was I going to try and put him back into a box that fit the rules of my world at the time or wait it out and see if it would just pass and go back to the way it’d use to be?”
Ballard accepted his son for who he was and Upworthy reports that Ballard wants other parents of transgender children to be more accepting.
“I see comments that too many parents missed out on what could have been an amazing journey for them and their child by not accepting them,” Ballard says. “Be as excited about your kid’s life as you were at the sonogram, when ‘we are having a baby’ was enough.”
Watch Ballard’s speech below.