Parents of local 7-year-old transgender girl share their story

TEMPERANCE, Mich. (13abc Action News) - Seven-year-old, Drea, is like many other little girls in the second grade.

Her favorite color is pink, she loves to wear dresses and her bedroom is filled with dolls and princesses. But Drea is not your typical little girl. She was born a boy.

"She would say, 'I was suppose to be a girl. I should be a girl.' She would repeat that a lot, " said Krista Bernath-Cannon, Drea's mother.

Bernath-Cannon said she gave birth to a son named Andreas. As a toddler, he would play dress-up in girls clothing and play with girl toys.

"When it first started, we had a check-up and the doctor," said Bernath-Cannon. "She said let it go, but if people start being mean to her and she doesn't stop, you may have a transgender child."

At just 3-years-old, Drea's parents made a difficult decision and allowed their only son to transition from a little boy to a little girl.

"At first it was surprising, because I know people are born how they are, but to me she was just my child," said Bernath-Cannon. "She was still so young, it broke my heart."

"It was tough at first. I didn't understand it. I didn't know what it was about," said Matt, Drea's father. "As soon as I stop realizing what other people would think and realize what would make my child happy, that's when I started to change."

Drea plans to start estrogen treatment before reaching puberty. It essentially blocks any further male development. Until then, she is continuing to live as a girl, even though she has male body parts.

"If people just see Drea, they would never know. I think if they just got to know Drea, they would see the person that she is," said her father.

Drea's parents say they hope that sharing their daughters story, will encourage other parents to be supportive of transgender children.